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Will 6 in a row make it go?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by creepyjackalope, Apr 20, 2007.

  1. creepyjackalope
    Joined: Apr 4, 2007
    Posts: 560


    This weekend we will be finishing up the work on the Nova Wagon. We pulled out the old tired 194 and dropped in a fresh rebuild 250 with an Offy intake, Holley 390 and a pair of Langdons cast iron headers. I am leaving the 3spd on the column as is with a new clutch. Anyone else here running anything similar? Im a bit nervous...... the investment was much more than what I could have done with a small block but I didnt want it to be so common. Hope she fires.
  2. jbon64
    Joined: Jul 26, 2006
    Posts: 398


    i've been reading up on the 6's lately . i just bought a 64 nova wagon with the 194 / glide. i was planning a small block swap, but the 194 runs so good i think i'll keep it in a while.
    since you swapped your intake , you may want to make sure you're running heat to the manifold via exhaust heat or water heat.
    langdons has a write up on there website about this , or you can go to and read up on a snot load of stuff there.
    the change's i'm considering are a progressive 2 barrel and a overdrive trans.
  3. pasadenahotrod
    Joined: Feb 13, 2007
    Posts: 11,777

    from Texas

    Heck yeah! It'll go 'til you've worn it out again...and again...and again.
    Joined: Nov 22, 2005
    Posts: 7,594

    from SIDNEY, NY

    In something as light as an early Nova, a warmed up 250 should be fine. You might want to make the (relatively) cheap conversion to a Saginaw four speed, though---in my experience, the extra gear makes a six much more flexible.
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  5. oilslinger53
    Joined: Apr 17, 2007
    Posts: 2,410

    from covina CA

    id keep that 194 around though, 64 novas with stock 6 cyluinder, for some strange reason, recently tripled or quadrupled in value (check around) some restored one are going for 25,000-30,000 bucks!!!
    if you want a different car later(and if your anything like me you will) that nova could be a nice bargaining chip!
  6. bobw
    Joined: Mar 24, 2006
    Posts: 2,218


    Remember, your 6 is a hundred cubic inches less than the most common small block. Don't expect miracles. BTW, I just put a 250 in my current '35 International project with a 4 speed. I expect it will keep up with traffic.
    Joined: Jun 15, 2006
    Posts: 3,187


    I have a couple ( actually three) six cylinder cars and they all run really well.
    We just finished Lindrosses ( My sons) 18 Dodge roadster with a 225 slant six engine, 390 carb , comp camshaft fresh rebuild etc.
    The majic is in the rear axle gears we installed a 3:73 rear and the car will set ya back a bit when punched !!!
    What gear ya running??? Most hp per lb going.......:)
  8. 56sedandelivery
    Joined: Nov 21, 2006
    Posts: 4,388


    Actually, keep that 194 6 cylinder only take the cylinder head, mill it .060, have the valves and guides done, decent springs, pin the studs , and put that head onto the 250 along with a cam change;you'll be surprised as will be a lot of V-8 owners. Had the same setup with a Clifford intake, Holley 2-barrel,Mallory distributor and Clifford headers. The 194 6 cylinder engines had smaller cumbustion chambers so you can use them to raise your compression ration without changing pistons. # 3864883 is the best head to use as it has 60-62 cc chambers.BUTCH
  9. budd
    Joined: Oct 31, 2006
    Posts: 3,479


    i run a 250 in my 45 gmc every day, i bought the engine two years ago for $100 bucks laying under a tree with a tarp over it for a year. the truck is pretty low geared and pulls along no problem. i have talked to some of the old time racers around here and they almost all run a 250 with a 194 head. i have two more 250 all ready to drop in if mine lays down on me, i`m thinking of welding a couple more carb flanges to the intake of one and running 3 carbs.
  10. chopped
    Joined: Dec 9, 2004
    Posts: 1,742


    Duel holley/webbers a 700 r4 and 4;10 gear. Expect to surprise some stock 350"s.
  11. Jalopy Jim
    Joined: Aug 3, 2005
    Posts: 1,868

    Jalopy Jim

    I have a 250 chev inline ; high compression, comp cam, 3-1 set up, headers, ported head, ect. Built it far a Henry J but never ran it. Engine builder figures there is 325 to 350 HP there.
    Hopefully some day it will get used in a project.
  12. Flatdog
    Joined: Jan 31, 2003
    Posts: 1,285

    Member Emeritus

    Vintakes, 292 chevy six used to go 9.70 in the 1/4 mile, They rock ,like we need another asshole 350.
  13. tomslik
    Joined: Mar 3, 2001
    Posts: 2,165


    BACK in the day, i got my ass STOMPED by a 65 nova with a 6 in it.....

    don't know about the 350 but we got plenty of assholes...
  14. Harris
    Joined: Feb 15, 2007
    Posts: 863


    Gonna put a 258 out of a jeep in my '29 A. So far I've collected a head(high compression), an Offy 4 barrel intake, working on headers / cam and a holley 390 - from what I've read I should be over 300 hp (prob more like 350+). The torque should be the same, more than enough power for the street.

    Inlines have great torque curves....
  15. B + M
    Joined: Aug 5, 2006
    Posts: 139

    B + M
    from sacramento

    About 12 years ago I built a 63 nova wagon with a 194". clifford intake with a small holley. clifford tube headers and glasspacks. I added a turbo 350 in place of the powerglide. It wasn't the fastest, but it kept up with traffic and sounded bitchin. I ran with no hood for a long time and always had people looking at it aksing questions. definetly cooler than a small block. almost every day I think about switching the small block in my international to one of those motors.
  16. Sixguns
    Joined: Jan 31, 2007
    Posts: 57


    I built a 64 Nova for my son, he drove it to school daily and also ran it at the local strip in the Hi School drags class. ran consistant mid 13's in street trim. To get there we used the 250, bored to 4" and lots of time spent on the head. The 250 head will out flow the 194 head, drop in some bigger valves,remove the intake boss and install lump ports in the intakes, makes a real strong runner.
  17. Bob K
    Joined: Mar 3, 2001
    Posts: 5,767

    Bob K
    from Antigo Wi.

    I have put 40k on my 52 Chev Convertable in 3 summers and the 292 6 cly has been trouble free. It gets 20mpg if you don't abuse it and has a ton of low end torque.

    The best part is the sound of the Dual Straight Pipes, I never use the radio.


  18. who needs a radio with a split manifold?!?!
  19. Fairlane Dave
    Joined: Mar 23, 2007
    Posts: 634

    Fairlane Dave

    I've had a 223 inline 6 and Fordomatic in my '57 Ford Custom for almost 4 years. I must admit, it's been fun to work on, but it is an absolute dog on the highway and I'm on the highway a lot.

    Recently, it became evident that the tranny would need some work, so I decided I might as well make it a bigger project and try to get some more punch out of the engine, too. I started looking at the fairly limited election of 223 performance parts - mostly Offy intakes and exhaust and then some bigger carbs, etc.. It may be cheaper on the Chevys and more common Ford 6's, but it added up FAST.

    Then, just for giggles, I priced out building a 302HO (carb setup) with an AOD - I already had a rebuildable 302 from a Mustang GT. I know a local tranny builder in Dallas who can build an AOD for next to nothing and 302 parts are cheap and easy to come by. When all was said and done, I could build the 302/AOD for only a little bit more than rebuilding my 223/Fordomatic.

    I know it isn't all about budget on these things and I do hate to pull the original 6 popper just because you don't see them all that much. However, I am building a super cool 302 that will also have my personal touches on it and will be a hell of a lot of fun to drive.

    I love seeing folks who keep the 6's in their cars and build them up. It just made more sense for me to make the swap now since I was going to have to pull the old tranny to rebuild it anyway.

    I may still keep the 223 and build it later on for another car or old Ford truck project 'cause they are a really cool thing to see.
  20. 56sedandelivery
    Joined: Nov 21, 2006
    Posts: 4,388


  21. Flatdog
    Joined: Jan 31, 2003
    Posts: 1,285

    Member Emeritus

    Here is a couple of pic of Vintakes altered.

    Attached Files:

  22. Flatdog
    Joined: Jan 31, 2003
    Posts: 1,285

    Member Emeritus

    2nd shot

    Attached Files:

  23. 1950ChevySuburban
    Joined: Dec 20, 2006
    Posts: 6,210

    Member Emeritus
    from Tucson AZ

    Back in the 80's I was spanking 5.0 Rustangs with my 225 Duster. Now I'm having fun with 250 Chevys!
  24. 1954HCCA
    Joined: Oct 10, 2006
    Posts: 61

    from LA

    I have an 85 cj7 that I ran all cliffords goodies in,with a weber.It will definitely put you back in the seat.I went with the 60 over kit.
  25. I ran a bone stock 250 in my Hup for a tear and a half. I bought it on ebay for $200 mileage unknown. I replaced it last fall with a fresh 292, clifford intake, Holley 390, HEI, Langdon's headers, 200R4 trans and 3.73 rear. It will keep up with and pass anything on the road. 22 mpg highway with a light foot (seldom), 16 mpg around town (lead foot).
  26. This is for the guy building the 258 Rambler engine.

    You may or may not already know most of this, but here are a few bits of hard-learned info I used to pass around long ago.
    You can use this as interesting trivia, or good tips, or UN-interesting info if you'd like.

    1971 and earlier Rambler/AMC/JEEP cyl heads had the largest ports of the factory sixes.
    Whether it comes from a 1965 to 1971 Rambler 199, 232, or the 258 that was pretty new around 1970, the head is the same. After 1971 it was changed into a not-quite-as-good smog head.

    AMC changed the oiling system about the same time they changed from a single rocker shaft (oiled by a passage in the head gasket and a bolt) to the pedestal-type rocker units that were oiled by pushrods.

    (info- AMC changed pushrod lengths a few times over the years. That means you can usually choose the correct length pushrod from stock offerings in parts books without having custom pushrods made) On one of the big-valve hot rod sixes, I had parts combinations from 1965 Rambler, 1977 Pacer, 1983 Eagle, and 71 Gremlin.

    Since those good heads were made before AMC dumped their reliable rocker shafts, I had to run an external oil line from the oil sending unit on the side of the block to the valve cover via a tube going in to the valve cover and into the rocker shaft. I regulated the oil flow by putting a small crushed area in the oil-pipe to allow a dribble of oil instead of a gusher.
    Don't worry about the reliability of doing that. I used it as a daily family car for over a dozen years before trading the car for another rod project.

    I don't remember the sizes of the bigger valves I put in, but I cut the seats in the cyl head as far as I dared, so I had bigger valves than any of the aftermarket hop-ups that came along years later.
    After enlarging the ports in the big-port early heads and grinding the valve bowls to blend everything, I decided to cut down some of those higly advertised Manley Pro-Flow valves that were supposed to be undercut and shaped for extra flow.
    Although I had read that some AMC guys were adapting factory Rambler V8 3/8 stem valves to get big valves in the six, I decided that Chevy smallblock valves were a nicer fit.
    I pressed in some bronze guide liners to reduce the guide diam to Chevy size (.341 was it?)
    That way I could get skinnier stems, plus the undercuts of the Manley valves = less junk in the airflow...

    I called Crane Cams (late 1970's) and told them I had a hopped up Rambler/JEEP engine bored out to 260-something that needed a bigger cam, but still had to be street-civilized for everyday driving. I do not remember the grind they gave me, but I installed it "straight-up" and it worked just great.

    Back in those days, there was NOBODY selling aftermarket electronic igns for Jeep or Rambler 6's, or even the V8's.

    I took a junkyard 1975 HEI distributor from a Chevy INLINE 6 CYL (IF YOU PUT IN A 4 CYL CHEVETTE TRIGGER AND A 4 CYL PONTIAC DIST CAP, YOU CAN ALSO USE THEM IN THE POSTAL JEEPS! I made one for a friend's route car), and put a 1965 Rambler 6 cyl gear on it.
    If you use a gear from a 1965 and similar POINTS-STYLE Rambler distributor, it will have the same .492 shaft as the HEI so you can simply install the gear.
    That ignition alone will give you more HP than almost any other IGN you can use. I sold quite a few of those in the late 70's and early-mid 80's when nobody else was making them.

    Somewhere along the line, I don't know exactly when (late 60's?), AMC started using a .500 shaft, so I had to start putting .500 shafts in the "Rambler/AMC HEIs" to match the available gears.
    Most of the 80's AMC electronics used the .530 shafts, so I couldn't use those anymore. Gears were getting hard to find, so I had to go to MOPAR PERFORMANCE and start buying AMC V8 gears, which also fit. After a time, that ran out also.

    I eventually quit after the bigger companies moved into the small-corner markets and sold for much less than my parts prices.
    You can easily make your own if you know what years' parts fit what....
    The power improvement with an HEI is noticable.

    That engine was so much fun to drive. I liked it much better than the 304 in my almost-new Jeep.

    Just about two decades later, I am told that the same engine I used to hot rod is still around, and was pulled out of an Eagle for someones late 60's Rambler project.

    The funny thing about that engine was that it got 20 MPG no matter what I did.
    When the wife drove it easy- 20 mpg.
    When I drove it very rough = 20 MPG
    When I drove it out to the east coast to tow home another car = 20 mpg LOADED.

    I have always wondered what it would be like if I added a later fuel injection to replace the carb...

    You can like or dislike my approach, but I hope some of this info will help someone's project if they are looking for different ideas to play with.
  27. belair
    Joined: Jul 10, 2006
    Posts: 6,994

    1. H.A.M.B. Chapel

    I'm gonna put that same engine combo in my 48 fleetliner. Using a Mercruiser. Have a a buddy with one in a 50 chevy and he said it will get all over a 261. You did good replacing that 194. Had one in a 66 Elcam and it wouldn't pull a sick woman off the pot.
  28. Just so there is no confusion because of the way my letter above was written...
    for an HEI in a Rambler six, you will need to use the Chevy INLINE 6 cyl trigger and cap. I haven't checked, but just in case the GM V6 (some were called odd-fire V6's) MIGHT have an unevenly spaced firing. It is probaly safest if you avoid using a V-6 trigger set if you are taking the HEI apart.
    You want the evenly spaced firing as used in the Chevy inline 6. That means the Chevy HEI I mentioned above can be left unmodified except fot the gear, for use on the AMC six.
  29. mr5by5
    Joined: Aug 9, 2005
    Posts: 76


    My '55 with original 235 in-line, 2-1bbls on an Offy intake, late model 3-speed, and 3.70 rear performs great! I am pretty sure the 250 is a much stronger engine performance-wise though. I had a '71 Ventura (Poncho Nova) with 250 that was pretty quick! I kept that engine to use in a project myself someday...

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