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Are 49-52 chev chassis' the same as 53-54???

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Morgan91, Sep 24, 2011.

  1. Morgan91
    Joined: Sep 12, 2010
    Posts: 560

    Morgan91
    Member
    from Australia

    hi, iv done a search but couldn't find anything, and i need some answers pretty quick because im about to buy a 53 chev with the intention of using the chassis for my 51.

    from the photos it looks the same and im only going from looking at mine from underneath the car (i haven't taken my 51 body off the chassis yet)

    basically the plan is to get the 53 (in pieces) do up the chassis with updated suspension and new power-plant/gearbox/diff etc, then plonk my 51 body on it. this way i dont have to have my 51 off the road for as long as i would if i were to use my stock chassis.

    then the plan was to build up the 53 on my 51 chassis, with a few modern touches and then either keep it or sell it and use it to pay for more stuff for the 51
     
  2. fbama73
    Joined: Jul 12, 2008
    Posts: 989

    fbama73
    Member

    No. They have different GM part numbers. You also get into differences between sedan and hardtop frames. The Bel Air is essentially a convertible with a steel toip welded on.

    As for what exactly is the difference, I do not know for sure. I'm betting it wouldn't take a master fabricator to make the swap you're talking about. I think the difference boils down to body mounts. (As long as you're swapping sedan for sedan or hardtop for hardtop.)
     
  3. Morgan91
    Joined: Sep 12, 2010
    Posts: 560

    Morgan91
    Member
    from Australia

    ah ok, well at this stage they are both 4 door sedans so do you think body mounts will be the same? its not like im looking for a straight bolt on, like il have to change the tunnel and mabey cut the rear floor out but it would be nice if it just bolted straight up to the body mounts to save a bit of time.

    cheers for the quick reply
     
  4. Morgan91
    Joined: Sep 12, 2010
    Posts: 560

    Morgan91
    Member
    from Australia

    Bumpity

    Any more info people?????
     

  5. brewster55
    Joined: Sep 2, 2010
    Posts: 149

    brewster55
    Member



    youre giving misleading info. you say hartop and sedan are different, then you say bel air is a convertible with a roof.

    what if its a 4 door bel air? my bel air is a sedan.

    bel air =/= hardtop/covertible
     
  6. koolkemp
    Joined: May 7, 2004
    Posts: 6,006

    koolkemp
    Member

    I think he meant the Bel Air up till 52...it was only available as a HT or Conv
     
  7. ems customer service
    Joined: Nov 15, 2006
    Posts: 2,608

    ems customer service
    Member

    the frames are basically the same, but the outriggers for the floor braces are different , you can change the outriggers but you will need a complete set. otherwise the bodys will not interchaange.

    somewhere i made a thread about 18 months ago with photos
     
  8. fbama73
    Joined: Jul 12, 2008
    Posts: 989

    fbama73
    Member

    Exactly.
     
  9. IIRC there are some differences in the bumper mounts and the ends of the frame, too, but again if you can fabricate they aren't a big deal.
     
  10. Morgan91
    Joined: Sep 12, 2010
    Posts: 560

    Morgan91
    Member
    from Australia

    So long story short I'm probably better off just using my 51 chassis.
     
  11. Morgan91
    Joined: Sep 12, 2010
    Posts: 560

    Morgan91
    Member
    from Australia

    Plan is to put an up graded front end (hg Holden disk brake front end) and a 9" rear and probably notch the chassis, it might be just as easy to take my 51 body off and use the 51 chassis then just bolt it back together, I'm gonna have to modify the body as well for the brake booster and probably have to cut out the rear floor and modify the fire wall and all that jazz but I just thought I'd save some time by doing the chassis before so I wouldn't have to have it off the road for as long
     
  12. fbama73
    Joined: Jul 12, 2008
    Posts: 989

    fbama73
    Member

    It's not going to be a bolt-on. But, since you're going to be modifying the body anyway to clear the notch, it's not going to be a straight bolt-on, even if you use the '51 Chassis. It might still be your best bet, time-wise. Take a close look at the body mounts on the frames.
     
  13. norton58
    Joined: Dec 14, 2008
    Posts: 128

    norton58
    Member

    Did the same to my '53 many moons ago (HG front, Commodore R&P), after listening to and taking the advice of street rodders (a fatal mistake in anyone's language) This is purely my opinion, but it's not worth the time, effort or money. Lousy turning circle, worse handling, rode like a pig. Never, ever 'felt' right and I started to lose interest in the car from that day on.

    The old adage I now live by: 'the best chassis for a 51 Chev is a 51 Chev chassis'.

    Purely my opinion!!!! Cheers, Matt
     
  14. Whippet
    Joined: Apr 28, 2011
    Posts: 5

    Whippet
    Member

    i was going to to a HG holden front under my "52 but changed my mind and did a HZ frame graft( wanted power steer), turned out good but a shit load of work, in hindsight i would go for a Jag front end, good turning circle and will sit lower than the Hg frontend, and has power steering and better brakes.
     
  15. Morgan91
    Joined: Sep 12, 2010
    Posts: 560

    Morgan91
    Member
    from Australia

    Yeah I'm just looking to get rid of the king pins, iv got a hg front end with hz spindles and hz rotors and calipers. Going for the Holden front end so I can bolt a small block straight to it, (even though I can do that with a jag front end) but Yeah a hz graft sounds like a good idea. Hmmmmmmmm
     
  16. happy hoppy
    Joined: Apr 23, 2001
    Posts: 2,328

    happy hoppy
    Member

    I have a 1954 and a 1950 chevy sedan. my 54 runs, but it will be getting a V8, automatic transmission, mustang II front suspension and open drive rear end. this laves me with a recently rebuilt 54, 235 motor, 3 speed transmission, rebuilt and bagged front and rear suspension from the 54.
    I thought I would just swap frames, install my 1954 chevy 2 door sedan frame under my 1950 chevy 2 door sedan, then use the 50 frame for the 54.
    right?
    NOPE!
    I pulled both bodies off their frames and set the frames side by side and as it turns out they are different.
    from the cowl forward its fine, but from the cowl back, the body mounts are off just enough that you'll need to cut them off and relocate them.
    also the transmission cross members are different 50 to 54 because the transmission cases are different, but the shift linkage is all in the same spot. only the outside of the transmission case is different 50 - 54.
    and 53-54 have side mount motor mounts whereas the 49-52 have front motor mounts.

    to use my 54, 235 motor and 3 speed transmission in my 50 chevy I removed the 54 transmission cross member by drilling out the rivets that hold it in, then I bolted into the 50 frame. I also used my 54 front cross member in the 50 frame, it bolts right up.

    this is a 54 front cross member in a 50 frame. notice there are no front motor mounts on the cross member and no holes in the frame for the side mount motor mounts.

    [​IMG]

    here is the 54 motor in the frame with the 54 side mount motor mounts installed in the 50 frame,
    [​IMG]

    50 transmission cross member,
    [​IMG]

    50 frame with a 54 transmission cross member,

    [​IMG]
    bolted it back in.
    [​IMG]

    now I can bolt in my 54 235 motor and trans into my 50 and it will look right.
     
  17. insane04
    Joined: Oct 10, 2011
    Posts: 6

    insane04
    Member
    from dallas ga

    looking great. any new stuff?
     

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