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Old 12-27-2007, 09:17 PM   #1
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1953 Chevy V8 Conversion / Steering Box Clearance...

Say does anyone have any experience with the V8 conversion for the 47-54 Chevrolet trucks? I have the engine in but the clearance between the steering gearbox and the side of the drivers side #7 cylinder plug is extremely close and I havent got my exhaust manifolds on yet, any Ideas? let me know if you have had any luck with these and any pointers if you have any. Thanks Scott-
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Old 12-27-2007, 09:49 PM   #2
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i installed a mustang 2 frount end, that usually fixes the problem... and causes many more.....

1953 chevy 1/2 ton 5 window, lowering spindels mustang 2 frount. ford 9"notched rear, airbags on 4 corners. purchased in 1983 while in high school for $175.00
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Old 12-28-2007, 01:58 AM   #3
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Scott, it depends on what you want out of your V8. If you just want a modern drivetrain with parts available anywhere then a 55 or 56 chevy 265 V8 left exhaust manifold will fit. It is good for an engine that puts out about 225 hp with a good dual exhaust system. If you want big horses then this flat log type manifold won't cut it and it's either move the box or go to an IFS.
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Old 01-14-2012, 09:00 PM   #4
Gtown Larry
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Thumbs up 53 chev truck V8 swap

I'm doing the same swap as you right now. I used the tubular crossmembers from Classic Chevy. The steering box has to be moved outward by 1 1/4-1 1/2 inches. Make a plate, or angle, to weld, or bolt on top of frame to move it outward by this much, keeping the new st. box mounting surface flat w the old surface. Also in an article in an old magazine I have from 1955, doing this same swap, they also moved the box, and had a machine shop mill the flange of the drivers exhaust manifold down by about 1/2", and they didnt have to move steering so far. I'm using block hugger headers, and had to put small ding where adjustment nut is on side of box. You can also move the engine slightly to the left w/o any problems. The steering arm has to be heated, and bent back toward the frame so the drag link is parallel w the frame.
Another alternaive is as a neighbor of mine did with his 53, cut off entire frame under cab, and graft on a Camaro, or Nova subframe, that has P.S, Disc brakes, and V8 mounts. Gtown Larry
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Old 01-16-2012, 05:27 PM   #5
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My 2 cents '48 had a bad steering box, weak springs, tired 6 cyl., and I wanted to install a 283, disc brakes, and so on. Knew I would have to get 265 rear dump manifolds and tubular engine mount to clear the stock box, new springs, disc brake kit, new steering box, etc. I jumped and bought a MII and solved all the problems with that. I was probably going to have $1500 in everything else if I did it with the stock design.
Just got it back on the road and loving it. Rides nice, sits low, stops great, steers sweet, good power with the 283, and of course with the inner fenders on you cannot see any of the front suspension if it matters.
Ps. I used the original column too!
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Old 01-17-2012, 06:56 AM   #6
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Or if ya get the power steering kit it moves the box up front on out side of the frame rail
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Old 01-17-2012, 08:30 PM   #7
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v8 swap

I just recently completed a V8 install into my '51. Re the steeering box, I purchased a heavy piece of angle iron from h-depot, cut a piece about 6 inches long and mounted it outside the frame where the steering box bolts on and matched up the 'top of the frame holes' on top the the angle iron. Then, the 2 bottom bolts on the gear box need a 'round shim' ( I cut two out of 1/2 inch water pipe). Depending upon how far you move the box outward, the pitman arm and connector may hit the front wheel (mind does). Heating it up and bending it inward may be required.
I used the tubular motor-mount crossmember. Speedway motors has a set of exhaust manifolds that I used....their part # 930-0327 - $59.00 each (they are 2 1/2 inch Corvette style...similar to the 'ram horn').
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