Need Help Please - Team Camaro Tech
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old Jul 17th, 03, 06:51 AM Thread Starter
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I've just bought a 1980 Camaro with a v6 3800cc Engine and a auo trans. I would like to know what yr/model engine would fir/work the best in this car without changing around alot of things. ANd what parts I would need to change due to the new engine, like is there any electronice i must worry about? (mounts and exhaust are expected) I want to put at least a 350 in it but i doint know what year or car to get it out of, right now im trying to find a cheap camaro with a 350
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old Jul 17th, 03, 11:40 AM
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To be honest...the most economical approach would be to find a nice v-8 camaro and start modifying THAT. You're going to have to change a lot, even though most of the stuff should just bolt right up. It's going to cost you a lot more than finding a nice camaro with a 350 or 305 already in it. Starting with a 3.8L, the engine mounts need changing, the trannie needs changing, the driveshaft needs changing, the cooling system needs changing, the exhaust system needs changing, a lot of the accessories probably need changing.... It's not a simple, pull the engine, change the mounts, drop the new engine back in type of deal (though, once you've got it set up to take a small block chevy, pretty much any small block chevy will bolt right in). There are also emissions issues, depending on where you live, and how big a deal emissions are there.

If you do most of your own repair work, and have been reading about hot-rodding and cars most of your's fairly do-able, but then you'd probably not be asking this question. If you don' could be relatively insurmountable. It's not that difficult a swap - all the factory parts are out there, and, like you said, you can find a donor car and just swap parts from car to car - but if you don't understand how everything works pretty well, it's going to be pretty easy to run into problems that are going to hang you up and make you abandon the project.

If you don't know much about it, or about auto mechanics in general, I'd,

a) find a car that already has the engine and transmission I wanted in it (or at least a v-8, so you could just swap in another small block),

b) make sure I had a friend willing to help, a lot, who DOES know quite a bit about it, or,

c) spend a lot of time learning, reading, and working on what you've got 'til you've got a handle on what you're doing and feel confident you can accomplish it.

It can be just need to figure out what makes the most sense, and whether you have the know-how to pull it off. What you're asking for, if you don't already know kind of what you're in for, is a manual that there really isn't room here to provide - though a lot of the info may be found here, if you do some searching.

Jags That Run ( publishes lots of manuals about v-8 swaps. Most of them are geared toward non-factory swaps...but you could get a lot of info about the issues involved and how to approach it. Their manual on V-8 S10 swaps is going to probably cover most of the pertinent info, even though your swap will be easier than that. Their manual on Datsun 240Z V-8 swaps is also a pretty good resource for swaps in general. If you just find a 1980 V-8 donor camaro, of course you can just take anything different from yours out of the donor and replace the corresponding parts in yours. But it would still help a lot to understand the general V-8 swap issues.

Good luck!

Huck<BR>355 SBC powered '87 Chrysler Conquest TSi - 10.3:1, Vortec heads, XE 268H cam, HEI, eq. length shorties, Performer RPM intake, 750 Edelbrock (1407), T-5 and 3.54:1 posi indep. rear
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old Jul 20th, 03, 10:28 PM
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If you can find a running 75-79 4door Nova with a small-block, you will have all the parts you need in one handy package.
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old Jul 21st, 03, 06:04 PM Thread Starter
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yea but that may run me up in the money, I was thinking maybe an old catillac or an old chevy van maybe..
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