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Need Help & Opinions on Engine Swap

lars

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 15, 2003
Messages
209
Location
In my workshop bar in Denver
Corvette
64 Black Roadster; 85 Coupe; 09 G8 GT 4-door Vette
I’m wanting to upgrade my ’64 Vette to be more like a European Sports Car, and what better way to do that than to install a 4-cylinder engine!

The 496-horse engine is just too much, and flaunts the American excess that the World hates us for. We should be more sensitive to other Nations’ feelings. My 4-cylinder swap is a good international gesture in this direction, and will give the car that International Sports Car sound and feel.
So I’ve pulled out the ridiculous V8 and I’m ready to drop in a 2000 cc SOHC Split Port engine from a Ford Escort. The 2-liter engine is the same length as the small block Chevy, and a slightly lower profile. It also has fuel injection, which is very sporty and efficient. The lower profile will allow me to get rid of the ugly hood I have with that big bulge in the middle, and the FI system will allow me to legitimately install the “Fuel Injection” badges on the sides of my fenders. The lower weight will give me almost perfect 50/50 weight distribution. The exhaust coming out the one side of the engine will be an easy hookup to the driver’s side sidepipe. With 96 horsepower, I figure the Vette will run almost as good as an old Miata.

Here’s the small block out of the car compared to the much nicer and more modern Overhead Cam Injected Split Port:
IMG_0680.jpg


The Split Port 2000 should be an easy swap if I can figure out some small details:
IMG_0681.jpg



My questions are:
  • Should I install the engine fore-and-aft for rear wheel drive? If so, does anyone make a transmission for this engine for installation in a Vette with rear wheel drive? Can I attach the front/rear engine mounts to the radiator support and the firewall?
  • I can use the stock transmission and convert the Vette to front wheel drive. Is there a conversion kit to do the front drive conversion on a ’64 with drum brakes?
  • Should I leave both sidepipes on the car, or should I remove the passenger side pipe?
Some opinion and guidance would be appreciated. I’m going to start by cutting the #1 crossmember out of the car so I can install the engine from the bottom – like engines should be installed.
 

BigJimZ16

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 20, 2008
Messages
925
Location
Portage, Indiana
Corvette
2010 Grand Sport Vert JS Blue
Lars, I'm thinking that you either need another cocktail or to quit drinkin' altogether...:chuckle
 

rponfick

Active member
Joined
Oct 12, 2002
Messages
41
Location
Lafayette, CO
Corvette
1969 427-435 roadster
Lars, I'm glad you have finally seen the light. Or, was it too much beer in that new German stein I gave you last weekend.

Ralph.
 

lars

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 15, 2003
Messages
209
Location
In my workshop bar in Denver
Corvette
64 Black Roadster; 85 Coupe; 09 G8 GT 4-door Vette
Ralph -
The beer stein keeps going empty. Now, I'm shaking up another Martini to see if it will help me figure this all out.

BigJim -
I'm taking the option of another cocktail...

:beer
Lars
 

BigJimZ16

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 20, 2008
Messages
925
Location
Portage, Indiana
Corvette
2010 Grand Sport Vert JS Blue
Ralph -
The beer stein keeps going empty. Now, I'm shaking up another Martini to see if it will help me figure this all out.

BigJim -
I'm taking the option of another cocktail...

:beer
Lars

Sounds good to me...:beer
 

Rowdy1

Well-known member
Joined
Mar 26, 2001
Messages
1,180
Location
Lake Hopatcong, NJ
Corvette
1962 CORVETTE-SOLD 2004 Z16 Z06 CE
VERY Good.......

I'm impressed. There aren't enough.....nevermind.:chuckle
I’m wanting to upgrade my ’64 Vette to be more like a European Sports Car, and what better way to do that than to install a 4-cylinder engine!

The 496-horse engine is just too much, and flaunts the American excess that the World hates us for. We should be more sensitive to other Nations’ feelings. My 4-cylinder swap is a good international gesture in this direction, and will give the car that International Sports Car sound and feel.
So I’ve pulled out the ridiculous V8 and I’m ready to drop in a 2000 cc SOHC Split Port engine from a Ford Escort. The 2-liter engine is the same length as the small block Chevy, and a slightly lower profile. It also has fuel injection, which is very sporty and efficient. The lower profile will allow me to get rid of the ugly hood I have with that big bulge in the middle, and the FI system will allow me to legitimately install the “Fuel Injection” badges on the sides of my fenders. The lower weight will give me almost perfect 50/50 weight distribution. The exhaust coming out the one side of the engine will be an easy hookup to the driver’s side sidepipe. With 96 horsepower, I figure the Vette will run almost as good as an old Miata.

Here’s the small block out of the car compared to the much nicer and more modern Overhead Cam Injected Split Port:
IMG_0680.jpg


The Split Port 2000 should be an easy swap if I can figure out some small details:
IMG_0681.jpg



My questions are:
  • Should I install the engine fore-and-aft for rear wheel drive? If so, does anyone make a transmission for this engine for installation in a Vette with rear wheel drive? Can I attach the front/rear engine mounts to the radiator support and the firewall?
  • I can use the stock transmission and convert the Vette to front wheel drive. Is there a conversion kit to do the front drive conversion on a ’64 with drum brakes?
  • Should I leave both sidepipes on the car, or should I remove the passenger side pipe?
Some opinion and guidance would be appreciated. I’m going to start by cutting the #1 crossmember out of the car so I can install the engine from the bottom – like engines should be installed.
 

Tom Bryant

Well-known member
Administrator
Joined
Nov 9, 2000
Messages
7,333
Location
Edgerton, Ohio, United States
Corvette
1959 black 270hp (9/2/69) 1981 Beige L81(10/20/80)
Great idea. Might I also suggest a set of 13" wheels?

Tom
 

navy2kcoupe

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 16, 2006
Messages
799
Location
West Central FL and SE Mass.
Corvette
2000 Navy Blue Coupe A4 Z51
Lars........Get out of the dyno room RIGHT NOW! I think you've been inhaling too
many exhaust fumes! Not quite as many as the folks at Westerbeke in Avon, Mass.
however. The guy that used to live next door to me worked for Westerbeke
in Avon. They build Diesel motors primarily for marine use. He used to bring home
the company F-250 Ford, and it was noisy as hell! I asked him about it, and he
lifted the hood to reveal a Westerbeke 4 cylinder diesel engine. He told me that
the 360 C.I. original motor wore out, and that they fabbed up an adapter plate
and mounted the 4 cylinder in there. LOTS of room to work on the engine, but
my neighbor said that 65 MPH was the top end, and that it took "pretty near
all day" to get there :L. You might want to think about a V6 as the smallest engine
to transplant in there. ;LOL
Andy Anderson :w
 

Highway Man

Well-known member
Joined
Oct 30, 2010
Messages
110
Location
West Plains, MO.
Corvette
1992 Black on Black Coupe
Irrevelant

To me I don't care what the rest of the world thinks and I am not concerned about their sensitivity-boo hoo. The world has been jealous of American ingenuity and innovation for decades and most contries in this world would like to see America fail. Rather than step up to the plate they would rather try and drag America down. If America is such a bad country why not move to another country? A person could always abandon cars altogether and ride a donkey. What you do with your car is definitely your business and that's just another thing that makes America Great!!!!!!!!!
 

Mac

Well-known member
Administrator
Joined
Feb 13, 2003
Messages
5,475
Location
Ottawa, Canuckistan
Corvette
1973 coupe L82 (gone as casualty of divorce)

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