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Technical Making room for a heart transplant

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by Licensed to kill, Mar 4, 2015.

  1. Licensed to kill
    Joined: Oct 4, 2009
    Posts: 214

    Licensed to kill
    Member
    from Alberta

    I am going to be putting a 348 into a '57 chevy 3100 pick-up. I'm told that the steering box interferes with the exhaust. Does anybody know how much interference has to be overcome?. I'm trying to figure out the best way to make room but to do so I need to know how much room I need to make. I want to keep the straight axle and manual steering. Thanks
     
  2. Use the time honoured method of hanging the engine in the engine bay and see what interferes and take appropriate action.
     
    Licensed to kill likes this.
  3. I've never done this swap but always wanted to. Before you make any changes to the steering box location I would get the engine set in there so you can see what your dealing with. My guess is it's not going to be a problem but if it is, it might be easier to offset the engine and inch or so for clearance.

    The guy you want to hear from is Squirrel. I'll bet he's done this swap and could give you better info.
     
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2015
  4. Licensed to kill
    Joined: Oct 4, 2009
    Posts: 214

    Licensed to kill
    Member
    from Alberta

    I hear ya. However, The truck is pretty much done other than an engine swap and the engine is also detailed and has ceramic coated headers and I would like to avoid/minimize any cosmetic damage to either. I have considered removing the front clip and doing as you suggested but, again, that increases the chance of damaging the paint.
     

  5. Rusty O'Toole
    Joined: Sep 17, 2006
    Posts: 9,522

    Rusty O'Toole
    Member

    Your 57 could have come with a 283 V8 meaning it was designed for a V8, unlike pre 55 models. I don't think you would have any trouble putting in a 348. They were bigger but the bulk was mainly in the head area, which was above the steering box. The 58s were very similar and they could be ordered with a 348.

    Pickup trucks generally have more room under the hood than cars.
     
    Licensed to kill and 40fordtudor like this.
  6. confusing. your trying to put the motor in without taking anything apart?. your best bet is to remove as much as possible to reduce any damage.
     
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  7. borderboy1971
    Joined: Oct 20, 2008
    Posts: 743

    borderboy1971
    Member
    from Canada

    I have a 58/9 Big truck in my yard that has a 348 in it from factory. Only two problems though...1 it's a big truck so I'm not sure if the cab height etc is different. and 2 The truck is covered in snow right now and I wouldn't be able to get you any pictures of the setup for awhile (-27c here this morning)
     
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  8. 302GMC
    Joined: Dec 15, 2005
    Posts: 6,819

    302GMC
    Member
    from Idaho

    Had a '59 Deluxe cab 3100 with a 250 hp '60 348 engine - no closer to a bolt in swap exists.
     
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  9. wvenfield
    Joined: Nov 23, 2006
    Posts: 5,273

    wvenfield
    Member

    You threw in the variable of headers. There are many different headers and no one answer unless one knows what the headers were designed for.
     
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  10. clem
    Joined: Dec 20, 2006
    Posts: 3,358

    clem
    Member

    I read the title and thought you were off to hospital for a major operation....
     
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  11. TomWar
    Joined: Jun 11, 2006
    Posts: 727

    TomWar
    Member

    we did that back in the early 60's, and I don't remember any problems at all.
     
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  12. Gary Addcox
    Joined: Aug 28, 2009
    Posts: 2,417

    Gary Addcox
    Member

    Did your truck begin life with a six cylinder? If so, MAYBE the steering box was mounted differently than in V-8 trucks. These other guys who did the same swap seem to have had no clearance issues. If your headers aren't built for your particular application, they won't fit. Hate to be the bearer of bad news
     
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2015
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  13. Lost in the Fifties
    Joined: Feb 25, 2010
    Posts: 440

    Lost in the Fifties
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    A friend put a 409 (same dimensions) in a 57 pickup in 1965. It was a bolt in, but he used original exhaust manifolds.
     
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  14. donsz
    Joined: Nov 23, 2010
    Posts: 215

    donsz
    Member

    I did this swap last summer. I did get interference. I had to carefully grind the steering box housing a bit. I also ground down the exhaust header where it interfered. I went too far and made a hole in the header. I tried Sanderson "Huggers" but they still had the interference problem. Thinking I had nothing to lose, I welded the hole in the stock header with patch. So far it has held up. See pictures.
    don
    engine_2.JPG engine_3.JPG engine_6.JPG
     
  15. Take the "headers" off and set the engine then see what needs to be done to fit the headers.

    I do know that some of the tri five trucks I have seen with big motors ( W motors, Rockets, nailheads, and etc.) have the engine offset 1-2" to the pass side if that helps any.
     
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  16. Licensed to kill
    Joined: Oct 4, 2009
    Posts: 214

    Licensed to kill
    Member
    from Alberta

    Thanks for all the input. The headers I have are sanderson block huggers. I have the original manifolds if I have to use them but would rather use the headers if I can. I do like the idea of setting the engine in and checking clearances and making adjustments as necessary I just want to go into it with as much info as I can so I don't run into a much bigger problem than anticipated. If I only need an inch then moving the engine over would be the best/easiest solution but if I need to make 3 inches, then the steering will need to be changed and I am hoping to have a heads up on which is the more likely scenario before starting.
     
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  17. 59Apachegail
    Joined: Apr 30, 2011
    Posts: 1,381

    59Apachegail
    Member
    from New York

    Did you ever get this done? If so how did it go?
     
  18. The problem with block hugger headers is that they are a one size fits all and they seldom fit well in anything. If it were me and I wanted headers I would set my engine (off set like I mentioned earlier) and build a set or get a set built for your application. I got a pretty good idea that you can build a set, I build headers for things and I am not the most talented man in the world. ;)
     
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  19. raven
    Joined: Aug 19, 2002
    Posts: 4,614

    raven
    Member

    Either set the engine 1-2" towards the passenger side (driver's weight will offset the weight shift) or go with a GM 525 box up front of the axle and make it a 'cross-steer' . It's a good setup and you can get complete kits to do it.
    r
     
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  20. 59Apachegail
    Joined: Apr 30, 2011
    Posts: 1,381

    59Apachegail
    Member
    from New York

    Not to hijack...

    When adding the space, how do you get the the 1-2" without messing up the geometry between the engine and the trans mount.
     
  21. Not a hijack at all, it is a good question.

    What normally happens is you move everything to one side. so you will have to modify the transmission mount. It is really not that big a deal to do, but it is something that you have to convince yourself that it is not that big a deal to do.
     
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  22. 59Apachegail
    Joined: Apr 30, 2011
    Posts: 1,381

    59Apachegail
    Member
    from New York

    Thanks Benno!!
     
  23. Never a problem I just wish I lived closer or was wealthy enough to travel about helping people with their stuff. :D
     
  24. treb11
    Joined: Jan 21, 2006
    Posts: 3,681

    treb11
    ALLIANCE MEMBER

    Donsz that is a good looking truck? I particularly like the way you routed the fuel lines to the tri-power
     
  25. Truckedup
    Joined: Jul 25, 2006
    Posts: 4,072

    Truckedup
    Member

    A friend had a 57 with a 409...he claimed it was a drop in swap .....
     
  26. Licensed to kill
    Joined: Oct 4, 2009
    Posts: 214

    Licensed to kill
    Member
    from Alberta

    Not yet. However, I have decided that I will do as suggested earlier and strip the front clip off of the truck (I need to paint and detail the firewall and inner fenders anyway) then I can more easily see what I'm doing and can make whatever adjustments necessary. There is a R&P available for these trucks with the straight axle but am seeing mixed reviews on it. Even IF I can get the motor to fit with the stock steering box, I would like to change it as the tire rubs on the drag link when turning hard left. In another thread I found some info on the R&P and one concern mentioned is that there needs to be a slip joint in the steering shaft. I'm not sure I understand the concern as My Peterbilts and Western Stars have a slip joint in the steering shaft. I would like to use the factory front engine and bellhousing mounts but will have to find a V8 bellhousing with the mounting pads. I will be either putting the wifes Model A back together OR doing the engine swap on the '57 this winter so I'm just gathering parts and info for the engine swap so I'm ready if I don't do the "A".
     
  27. Licensed to kill
    Joined: Oct 4, 2009
    Posts: 214

    Licensed to kill
    Member
    from Alberta

    I did some searching for the GM 525 box and it does look like it might work (if I'm understanding what I'm seeing). It appears like it can be mounted on the inside of the frame (much preferred to outside) and (like you suggested) ahead of the axle (also preferred). Will have to go out and have a look at the truck to see where/how it would be mounted. Thanks
     

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