Can I use big block stands with a 406 in my '68? - Team Camaro Tech
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  #1  
Old Nov 17th, 12, 08:46 PM
Boucher421 Boucher421 is offline
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Default Can I use big block stands with a 406 in my '68?

I appreciate your patience up front. I'm new to the forum, and probably the least experienced guy in here. Figured with YouTube and camaros.net, how hard could rebuilding a camaro be?!?! Now I'm feeling the pain of my ignorance - and lovin every minute of it!

Dropped in a 406 in my '68. Took three guys, four crowbars, and a ratchet strap to get the bolts through the frame stands/mounts. Seemed excessive. Then we noticed the oil pan is resting on the subframe, and the bellhousing is against the drivers side tunnel. Kind of explains the "excessive force".

Tranny mount needed more 'excessive' force to line up the bolts.

Seems to me that if the motor was pushed 1/2" forward and 1/2" towards the passenger side, I'd be in business.

Current frame stands have no markings, approximate measurements:
Passenger - 2 3/16 from frame to bolt hole, 2 13/16 from frame to top
Driver - 2" to bolt hole, 2 5/8 to top
Both 2 5/8" wide.

Based on a post from Nashville Beth, these sound like the proper stands for 68 small block. The measurements are pretty close to part #s 3955183 & 3980938. Surprised that drivers side is shorter than passenger.

Can I use big block stands? The movement forward and towards passenger would help tranny mount and bellhousing issues. Possibly they'd help with oil pan clnc as well.

Thoughts???
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  #2  
Old Nov 17th, 12, 08:57 PM
camarodude67 camarodude67 is offline
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Default Re: Can I use big block stands with a 406 in my '68?

If this is a small block then you need small block frame mounts, maybe this car was a 6 cylinder?

Jeff G.
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  #3  
Old Nov 17th, 12, 09:09 PM
Eric Kammerer Eric Kammerer is offline
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Default Re: Can I use big block stands with a 406 in my '68?

Here's a resource on the different type of mounting systems for the SBC and BBC in 1st gen Camaros: http://pozziracing.com/camaro_engine.htm

Need to know more about the engine (stock oil pan? Aftermarket?), trans, frame brackets (you gave measurements, but are they attached with three bolts each through the frame cradle? We get some here that are welded on, bolted through non-OE bolt holes, etc.) to help figure out what is going on. Pics (host on free site like Photobucket, then paste [IMG] code line into post here, and they appear) would help too.

Also, search "subframe alignment" here; First thing I would do (and did do) was make sure the subframe was installed to factory specs/dimensions.

I am sleepy; will check back in AM.

Oh and welcome to TC!
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  #4  
Old Nov 18th, 12, 12:55 AM
Boucher421 Boucher421 is offline
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Default Re: Can I use big block stands with a 406 in my '68?

I'll try to post pics tomorrow.

M20 transmission with hurst shifter, which I forgot to mention hits the tunnel in 4th gear (VERY slightly).

I think it's a standard $50 oil pan. I'll have to check with the builder this week. He helped with the first part of the install, and was surprised the pan was sitting so close. He said it was just a standard oil pan for a small block.

Engine mounts look like the standard small block 67/68 stands that people have posted in other threads. Three bolt holes. Dog ear hangs over the aft edge of the frame.

I've gone back to David Pozzis site about a dozen times; I don't get a good read if big block stands (and mounts) will work.

Again, I'll post pics of the oil pan clearance and frame stands tomorrow.
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  #5  
Old Nov 18th, 12, 03:40 AM
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Default Re: Can I use big block stands with a 406 in my '68?

Welcome, Boucher.
The only advice I can offer, there are other experts here, Eric is one of them, the trans xmember for a BBC has a five-sided hole for bolt access where the SBC is a four-sided. If you have a SBC trans xmember and BBC engine mounts, yes, it will be a little hard getting the bolts in the trans mount. And, the xmember can be installed on the subframe backwards making trans install more difficult - OE shifter holes, the holes on the edges, go towards the drvr side.

Years ago, I helped a friend install a 396 into a SBC equipped '67 Camaro. Transfusion went well from what I remember. So, with this line of thought, a SBC into a BBC should be relative easy, but not needing four crowbars and a ratchet strap.

One thing is the isolator width, the engine block mount, has to match the frame stand/mount.I would believe it would be ideal if you installed the BBC insolators onto the block and go from there.

Standard OE design oil pan should not hit the frame, IMHO, it should clear.Let us know what you find.
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Old Nov 18th, 12, 08:14 AM
X-77 keith X-77 keith is offline
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Default Re: Can I use big block stands with a 406 in my '68?

Aftermarket pans such as say Summit are a little taller that factory. I have seen people shim between the block and the mount to give clearance. I dont condone this , but have seen it work. You might have the wrong engine side mount. Some are taller than others. You shouldn't have to use crowbars or straps. Something is not matching up. I would fix the oilpan issue first and then like stated before make sure mounts are correct " left is on the left and right is on right " and that the crossmember is corect.
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  #7  
Old Nov 18th, 12, 08:29 AM
TJS69 TJS69 is offline
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Smile Re: Can I use big block stands with a 406 in my '68?

Big Block stands will work IF you also have a big block transmission crossmember. If you don't your engine will sit crooked and you will have other problems.
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  #8  
Old Nov 18th, 12, 09:18 AM
TJS69 TJS69 is offline
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Smile Re: Can I use big block stands with a 406 in my '68?

I think your best solution is to put washers or spacers under the engine mounts to lift the engine. Things to be aware of : This is at a 45 angle so if your washer is only 1/16 thick, it will only raise your engine 1/32 vertical. Also, if the engine is raised too much your header collectors may hit your floorboards.

Aftermarket oil pans and newer stock pans can cause clearance problems on first gen. camaro's.

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  #9  
Old Nov 18th, 12, 10:43 AM
Eric Kammerer Eric Kammerer is offline
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Default Re: Can I use big block stands with a 406 in my '68?

When you say the shifter hits opening slightly, where is that? On passenger side? If so, that would make some sense.

Primary thing to look for regarding 1st gen BBC vs SBC frame stands/bracket, is that, whether the 67-68 style or 69 style, the driver side is taller than passenger side. You can either just measure and post the distance from base/underside of bracket to the center of the mount through bolt. Obviously best done from aft side. Post or include the tape in pics.

If you do end up finding that your frame stands are BBC, and your trans crossmember is the SBC/L6 style, I am amazed the trans mount was even close to fitting. Should end up well forward of mount holes, unless you have one of the factory subframes that has the second set of crossmember mounting holes. Or maybe it is turned around like suggested above. Whatever.

If you do have the "wrong" crossmember but can somehow get it correctly positioned fore/aft, many guys have used the poly Energy Suspension mount that has a third, center bolt hole, and just used that one bolt through the passenger side crossmember hole. It supposedly works fine, not sure i would do it.

Lets get the engine mounting figured out, then we can talk more about the trans. Let's see the pics of what you have right now.
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Old Nov 18th, 12, 01:05 PM
Boucher421 Boucher421 is offline
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Default Re: Can I use big block stands with a 406 in my '68?

TJS - I'd hate to use the washers as a band-aid fix to the problem; I'd guess I'll run into more problems down the road since the other problems exist other than the oil pan clearance.

As promised, here's a bunch of pics - first attempt at upload, so bear with me:

Mounts:
http://i1080.photobucket.com/albums/...1/IMG_7542.jpg
http://i1080.photobucket.com/albums/...1/IMG_7541.jpg

Oil pan:
http://i1080.photobucket.com/albums/...o/IMG_7535.jpg
http://i1080.photobucket.com/albums/...o/IMG_7536.jpg

Shifter:
http://i1080.photobucket.com/albums/...o/IMG_7537.jpg
Left/right offset seems ok. Second gears comes really close to hitting back side of opening. Fourth gear touches, but doesnt prevent dropping into gear. It could stand to move a bit to the right.

Crossmember:
Top and bottom views:
http://i1080.photobucket.com/albums/...1/IMG_7538.jpg
http://i1080.photobucket.com/albums/...1/IMG_7540.jpg
http://i1080.photobucket.com/albums/...1/IMG_7539.jpg
Total length about 31 1/2.

The subframe has three holes to choose from for mounting. Using four bolts only allows for one mounting position. During the install, we had to force the crossmember forward to get the bolts in. Didn't seem right at all, but we (and our ratchet strap) were more stubborn than the steel. I tried turning it 180, which only made the problem worse.

Looks a lot like this one for a big block. Bolt holes don't look offset as I would expect, but heard some manufacturers have made big block crossmembers without an offset? I understand the issue/need for offset with bbc mounts:

http://www.restorationperformance.co...mission/Detail

Before the install, I picked up bbc stands and mounts as my research led me to believe I might have clearance issues with balancer/sway bar. Is the only difference that the bbc setup will move the engine over? I figured the block dimension difference would prevent the ability to mount a small block using bbc stands.
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  #11  
Old Nov 18th, 12, 01:36 PM
TJS69 TJS69 is offline
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Smile Re: Can I use big block stands with a 406 in my '68?

I have never seen a crossmember like that. The crossmember should be two pieces of steel spotwelded together. What you have is only 1 of the pieces needed.

You don't like the washer idea... then get a new oil pan.

New mounts are not going to help you. A big block is 1/2" to the passenger side and 3/4" forward.

A big block crossmember that is not offset is a Pontiac Firebird crossmember.
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  #12  
Old Nov 18th, 12, 01:48 PM
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Default Re: Can I use big block stands with a 406 in my '68?

Crossmember is not OE design, as Tom suggests.
Oil pan is too thick/tall.
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Old Nov 18th, 12, 01:54 PM
TJS69 TJS69 is offline
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Default Re: Can I use big block stands with a 406 in my '68?

Your dimensions are wrong for a SBC or a BBC.




You may have 1 BBC mount and 1 SBC mount.
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Last edited by TJS69; Nov 18th, 12 at 05:28 PM.
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Old Nov 18th, 12, 02:28 PM
TJS69 TJS69 is offline
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Old Nov 18th, 12, 03:31 PM
X-77 keith X-77 keith is offline
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Default Re: Can I use big block stands with a 406 in my '68?

I agree the washer does'nt look very good and I would not do it to my car. Late model small block cars and trucks 87 and up vortech engines and some 4.3 V-6 came with a factory plate under the engine side of the mount. This would make it not so noticable and distribute the load better. Washers will work , just stick out and might draw attention. The cross member is not 67-69 camaro as stated before, poss 70 and up pontiac.

Last edited by X-77 keith; Nov 18th, 12 at 04:03 PM.
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