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Old 08-13-2001, 11:32 PM   #1 (permalink)
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What do you guys think of the buick v-6 swaps?? I have found an 82 pickup with a buick v-6 and turbo350. Just wondering what to expect out of that engine. Is it even worth going and looking at? I have heard of it but how does it compare to the 4.3 swap, etc??
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Old 08-14-2001, 06:01 AM   #2 (permalink)
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my opinion ONLY! I pulled a 3.8 and replaced with a 4.3. Hated the 3.8 and wanted Fuel injection. BUT - I've heard of many, many people who are very happy with the 3.8, so don't put too much weight in what I say. <IMG SRC="smilies/smile.gif" border="0">
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Old 08-14-2001, 06:47 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by texaslearner:
<STRONG>What do you guys think of the buick v-6 swaps?? I have found an 82 pickup with a buick v-6 and turbo350. Just wondering what to expect out of that engine. Is it even worth going and looking at? I have heard of it but how does it compare to the 4.3 swap, etc??</STRONG>
I did the 231 V6 / TH350 swap to my '83 p/u many years ago, before the 4.3 was available. These days a FI 4.3 would be a better choice, but there is nothing wrong with the 231, especially if it's already there. I've got a Weiand intake, Holley 4bbl, and Downey headers on mine and it does pretty good. It's a '76 engine with close to 400K on it and it still runs great, and it's emissions exempt. I'm currently in the process of building a new 350 trans for it that will have a lockup converter and 1st and 2nd gears adapted from a 700R4, which have a lower ratio. This will make it a little better on and off road.
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Old 08-14-2001, 09:10 AM   #4 (permalink)
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<font color="yellow">
  • Go here for the MacDaddy Toyota links page - lots of links to engine swap articles.
  • This article is about swapping in a Buick and his impressions of it.
</font>

[ 08-14-2001: Message edited by: MasterYota ]
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Old 08-14-2001, 09:24 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by MasterYota:
<STRONG><font color="yellow">
  • Go here for the MacDaddy Toyota links page - lots of links to engine swap articles.
  • This article is about swapping in a Buick and his impressions of it.
</font>

[ 08-14-2001: Message edited by: MasterYota ]</STRONG>
FYI - Jack never finished that 3.8 Swap. All of his information is correct, and in theory his numbers made sense. I bought the thing but just never got it to run the way I wanted it. But, I think that was more an issue of my lack of carberator experience than anything that Jack did.

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Old 08-14-2001, 10:29 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Question for Fourwd1: Do you think the Downey header is worth the money? Does it appear to be good quality? And lastly, is there a clearance problem with using the stock manifold and starter?

TIA,

Butch
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Old 08-14-2001, 10:42 AM   #7 (permalink)
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The other question I was thinking about is it comes with a turbo 350. But I want a manual tranny. I couldn't live long with automatic. What manual tannies can I use with the 3.8 v6?? Is a 5spd toyota tranny best or should I go with a 4spd american tranny? 420, 435 etc??

[ 08-14-2001: Message edited by: texaslearner ]
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Old 08-14-2001, 10:53 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by SPR:
<STRONG>Question for Fourwd1: Do you think the Downey header is worth the money? Does it appear to be good quality? And lastly, is there a clearance problem with using the stock manifold and starter?TIA,Butch</STRONG>
Well, I don't remember what I paid for it then or how much it is now. Quality? - it's at least 16 yrs old and is just starting to rust, while the rest of the truck is nothing but rust (and is currently under total reconstruction for that reason), so I'd say quality is very good (at least it was back then). Clearance problems - starter: no; manifold (I assume you mean intake): no, how could it? It is kind of tight at the inside of the frame, but it fits.
Did I answer everything? If you've got questions, I've got answers. <IMG SRC="smilies/smile.gif" border="0">
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Old 08-14-2001, 11:54 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I just drove an 85 Runner with the 231/T350 last year, and still kick myself for not getting it ($1500) <IMG SRC="smilies/crybaby2.gif" border="0"> <IMG SRC="smilies/crybaby2.gif" border="0"> I ran a little rough, but had massive torque compared to my 22RE. My bro-in-law is a big Buick fan, and claims that you can suck a lot of power out of those mills.

I also would not have lasted long with an auto though. Would have been the wife's winter ride.
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Old 08-14-2001, 02:32 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Fourwd1,

I was speaking of the exhaust manifold. Are you running the stock starter with the Downey headers - read somewhere that a gear reduction starter?? is necessary to clear the header Also, what carb are you running? I recently pulled a 231 out of an 1985 Buick cutlass supreme with 105K. I doubt that I will use the stock 2Barrel - too many emission items. I'm considering the use of my 32/36 weber but it may not pass enough CFM.


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Old 08-14-2001, 02:45 PM   #11 (permalink)
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[QUOTE]Originally posted by texaslearner:
[QB]The other question I was thinking about is it comes with a turbo 350. But I want a manual tranny. I couldn't live long with automatic. What manual tannies can I use with the 3.8 v6?? Is a 5spd toyota tranny best or should I go with a 4spd american tranny? 420, 435 etc??

Over the past year or so, I helped a buddy of mine drop a 231 into his 86 runner. It came carbed from the donor olds(87), but we junked the carb and replaced it with a Howell(sp) EFI. Increased the $ of his swap by about 2K itself but it runs real smooth now at all altitudes. He got all the swap stuff from some guy for about $500(headers,rad,bellhousing..) His runner is IFS with NO lift, so we had to get a custom oil pan made to clear the IFS diff. That was pricey too!! If it's going in a solid axle or lifted IFS, should have no probs with fitment at all. As for the starter/header question, yes it is very tight on the frame rail area. He's got very little room to pull that starter. The fitment itself is great, small compact block. We did put a 2"BL on for extra clearance though, although it's not necessary. His 231 is mated to the original 5spd yota tranny, and the great thing is his motor mounts lined up great so we did not have to modify a single driveline. He even bought the slide adapter just in case for the t/c but we didn't need it. The tranny has held up fine so far.

He runs 33" BFG at's with stock 4:10's and it's obviously more power than the 4banger that was in there, let's just say that. We also had his engine rebuilt by a great shop here in town, so there is no typical balancing issues because that thing is tight! It'll definately out run my 88 with a tired V6, but after all the $ that it took him to get it in there, he could have had a V8!
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Old 08-14-2001, 05:12 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Colorunner, Please tell me more about the motor mounts on your friend's rig. Such as, did me purchase mounts and bolt or weld them on to the frame or original mounts. Or did he just modify his old mount, if so, how.

I know I'm began,

TIA, Butch
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Old 08-15-2001, 01:15 AM   #13 (permalink)
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I have a 82 Buick 231 HEI Edelbrock Holley 450. It does well except stalling sometimes steep uphill.
It's bolted to a th350 with Marlin 470 to Toy 410 with 36's.
My next rig will have a 4.3 EFI motor.
Screw that carb $%^&*
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Old 08-15-2001, 06:03 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by SPR:
<STRONG>Fourwd1,

I was speaking of the exhaust manifold. Are you running the stock starter with the Downey headers - read somewhere that a gear reduction starter?? is necessary to clear the header Also, what carb are you running? I recently pulled a 231 out of an 1985 Buick cutlass supreme with 105K. I doubt that I will use the stock 2Barrel - too many emission items. I'm considering the use of my 32/36 weber but it may not pass enough CFM.Butch</STRONG>
I must have mis-read, as headers replace the exhaust manifold. Yes, the stock starter fits fine, no problems. I'm using the Holley 390 cfm (model 8007 I think) on a Weiand single plane intake. A dual plane would be much better, but that was the only thing available for a '76 engine. The 2bbl is fine for a stock engine, a 4bbl would be a waste w/o intake, headers, and preferably a cam.
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Old 08-15-2001, 06:47 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by SPR:
<STRONG>Question for Fourwd1: Do you think the Downey header is worth the money? Does it appear to be good quality? And lastly, is there a clearance problem with using the stock manifold and starter?

</STRONG>
The Downey headers are re-badged AA units. No interferance problems with starter or tranny - even clears the slave cylinder if you are using the toyota tranny. I actually have a brand new set still sitting in my garage (non-chrome version) that I bought because I didn't like the chrome downey's - turns out they were the same. If anyone needs a set, let me know.

Personally, I'd say make your own motor mounts and push the engine as close to teh firewall as possible. That's what Jack did and it positioned the engine perfectly.
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Old 08-15-2001, 09:18 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by SPR:
<STRONG>Colorunner, Please tell me more about the motor mounts on your friend's rig. Such as, did me purchase mounts and bolt or weld them on to the frame or original mounts. Or did he just modify his old mount, if so, how.

I know I'm began,

TIA, Butch</STRONG>
Butch- Unfortunately, we don't know what company the mounts came from because he bought a whole bunch of swap stuff from someone who had gotten it second hand and never used the stuff. The mounts though were completely bolt on. We used the original frame mounts welded on the 4runner, bolted on the adapter mounts for the buick and those mounts in turn bolted to the original motor mounts we pulled from the engine. Well, we actually bought new factory buick 231 engine mounts because the ones from the 87 were worn out and one was cracked. The mounts worked great like I said it was 100% bolt on swap for us. We only had to trim small areas around the passenger sid front axle locator to get the bellhousing some clearance, but that was like only .25" and we just used a simple cutoff wheel for that. But if yours is going in a pre ifs, should not have probs there. Just guessing the mounts probably came from Downey or AA. Probably the same mounts in any case. Any other questions...fire away. Hope this helps.
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Old 08-17-2001, 03:50 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Question about oil pans and filter. My rig has about 3" of lift, will the stock pan bump the torque rod or pumpkin? Will the stock oil filter hit the pumpkin?

Rockota, I would like to talk to you about your spare parts.
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Old 08-19-2001, 02:02 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Has anyone put a 700r-4 tranny behind the 3.8 instead of a th350?? Does the 700r-4 just bolt up or do I need an adapter. I just want the overdrive. Would make it nicer on the highway at 75, besides the lower 1st gear.
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Old 08-20-2001, 06:24 AM   #19 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by texaslearner:
<STRONG>Has anyone put a 700r-4 tranny behind the 3.8 instead of a th350?? Does the 700r-4 just bolt up or do I need an adapter. I just want the overdrive. Would make it nicer on the highway at 75, besides the lower 1st gear.</STRONG>
I don't think the 700R4 was ever offered w/the 231, so you would need some sort of adapter for the bellhousing. With the tailhousing removed the length should be the same as the TH350.

Texaslearner, got your e-mail.
The 700R4 1st and 2nd gear mod to the TH350 is not just a parts swap. The 700 parts are machined and modified to fit and work in the 350. A friend of mine works at a racing trans shop that makes and sells the kit, and I've seen someone else advertise it in 4WD mags occaisionally.

I can get more details if you'd like.

Just got a call from another transmission friend, he finally located a 350 lockup core to rebuild <IMG SRC="smilies/smile.gif" border="0">

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Old 08-20-2001, 09:54 AM   #20 (permalink)
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The 200r4 was the 4-speed auto tranny put behind the 3.8. Upgrades are readily available, since that same tranny was in the Grand National and GN/X.
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Old 08-20-2001, 10:08 AM   #21 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by crashinaz:
<STRONG>The 200r4 was the 4-speed auto tranny put behind the 3.8. Upgrades are readily available, since that same tranny was in the Grand National and GN/X.</STRONG>
But the 200R4 doesn't have a removeable tailhousing.
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