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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
So, I just picked up a 1 owner 45,000 mile 1978 Cutlass for my new daily driver. I've always loved the GM G-body style, especially the 442, Hurst/Olds, and of course the Buick Grand National (my brother has a 10 second GN that get 25 mpg). This car is absolutely as new, was owned by an 80 year old customer of mine that died, and his "kids" all live in Georgia, so they were just getting rid of his stuff dirt cheap. Scored this thing for $500 and runs and drives perfectly.....Except it's literally the slowest vehicle I've ever driven, and I've driven some real turds (Chevy LUVs, 2.8L Rangers, Mercury Topaz AWDs, etc.). It's got a 260 Olds V8 rated at 105 (yes, 105) hp, a 165 cfm 2 barrel, and 2.65 rear gears. I'm going to be swapping in a 350 Olds or 455 this summer, as it's only getting 16 mpg despite being in a perfect state of tune, it lumbers so bad trying to break the wind resistance of it's own aerodynamics and speed. There are virtually no performance parts for this as the heads are their own design, with ports that are approximately .75 x .75, and intake valves at 1.51, exhaust are 1.30. You can swap on heads from the bigger 350, then you can put on an intake and 4 barrel, but why bother? This all got me to thinking....What a great engine to do another Engine Master type competition. Each team or builder gets the same 260 Olds V8, or some other anemic engine to start with, and let's see what kind of power the really good guys can pull out of these dogs. Stock block and stock stroke, naturally aspirated, anything else, have at it. On this engine, once you swap the heads (there are a lot of aftermarket Olds heads), intakes will bolt on, headers will work, and small block Olds cams fit.....Like I said, just give the guys in the know something different to work with that wouldn't normally be a performance build, but there are parts that fit, so wouldn't be too much fabbing involved.....just a thought as I was thinking what to do with this engine after I pull it other than use it to power a go kart or something else light enough for it to get out of it's own way. I know it'll never happen, but what do you guys think?

Lucas
 

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I love those g bodies. I have a 1984 grand prix w/ t-tops. It was my first car and I stiil have it. It needs some work but I will never get rid of it. just need to find another 350 for it.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
With that huge engine bay I would just put a 385 ford in it. Cheaper than an 455 and how cool would that be??
It has occurred to me, too. Despite the fact that I'm a Ford guy, I enjoy Olds/Buick/Mopar cars as well, though. I think I'm going to go with a Buick or Olds, because the simplicity of the swap will be cake....Plus I've got my truck and Mach 1 to keep me in all the 385 series play I can handle ;).

Lucas
 

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So, I just picked up a 1 owner 45,000 mile 1978 Cutlass for my new daily driver. I've always loved the GM G-body style, especially the 442, Hurst/Olds, and of course the Buick Grand National (my brother has a 10 second GN that get 25 mpg). This car is absolutely as new, was owned by an 80 year old customer of mine that died, and his "kids" all live in Georgia, so they were just getting rid of his stuff dirt cheap. Scored this thing for $500 and runs and drives perfectly.....Except it's literally the slowest vehicle I've ever driven, and I've driven some real turds (Chevy LUVs, 2.8L Rangers, Mercury Topaz AWDs, etc.). It's got a 260 Olds V8 rated at 105 (yes, 105) hp, a 165 cfm 2 barrel, and 2.65 rear gears. I'm going to be swapping in a 350 Olds or 455 this summer, as it's only getting 16 mpg despite being in a perfect state of tune, it lumbers so bad trying to break the wind resistance of it's own aerodynamics and speed. There are virtually no performance parts for this as the heads are their own design, with ports that are approximately .75 x .75, and intake valves at 1.51, exhaust are 1.30. You can swap on heads from the bigger 350, then you can put on an intake and 4 barrel, but why bother? This all got me to thinking....What a great engine to do another Engine Master type competition. Each team or builder gets the same 260 Olds V8, or some other anemic engine to start with, and let's see what kind of power the really good guys can pull out of these dogs. Stock block and stock stroke, naturally aspirated, anything else, have at it. On this engine, once you swap the heads (there are a lot of aftermarket Olds heads), intakes will bolt on, headers will work, and small block Olds cams fit.....Like I said, just give the guys in the know something different to work with that wouldn't normally be a performance build, but there are parts that fit, so wouldn't be too much fabbing involved.....just a thought as I was thinking what to do with this engine after I pull it other than use it to power a go kart or something else light enough for it to get out of it's own way. I know it'll never happen, but what do you guys think?

Lucas
The 105 HP is of course, rated via the S.A.E. rating with all of the accessories operating. In reality it is probably closer to 165 or so HP.

I would personally put in another Olds engine like a 455 or so due to the resale factor. I.E. the possible buyers that look at these cars are more than likely gm oriented in the first place. The potential buyers would be put off with any engine other than a gm based engine.

I of course, feel the same way on a Ford vehicle that someone puts any other engine in. The Ford guys hate the gm or other engine but love the car. That leads to making a deal on the car body only or a reduced sale price on the car due to the "worthless drivetrain" That typically negates the swaps worth. Unless it was done to elicit a "troll" response.
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
The 105 HP is of course, rated via the S.A.E. rating with all of the accessories operating. In reality it is probably closer to 165 or so HP.

I would personally put in another Olds engine like a 455 or so due to the resale factor. I.E. the possible buyers that look at these cars are more than likely gm oriented in the first place. The potential buyers would be put off with any engine other than a gm based engine.

I of course, feel the same way on a Ford vehicle that someone puts any other engine in. The Ford guys hate the gm or other engine but love the car. That leads to making a deal on the car body only or a reduced sale price on the car due to the "worthless drivetrain" That typically negates the swaps worth. Unless it was done to elicit a "troll" response.
Yessir, I am aware of the SAE rating.....I feel they overrated this thing at that haha....I'm 99% sure I'm going to stick with a small block, unless a screaming deal comes up on a 455. I'm enjoying the hell out of driving this thing on road trips. Comfortable, everything works, and like I said, I've always wanted one. I don't know why, but the late 70s-mid 80s GMs have always had just the right amount of plasticky cheesiness to suit me, especially the G-bodies....Here's an old crappy pic of my 71 Delta 88, it's my favorite other than my Mach 1. Very rare, with the same engine optioned as a W-30 442, less than 400 of them made that way. Love this car to death.

Lucas
 

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Definitely needs an Olds 455 and a B.O.P. 350 trans. How wild you want to go with the build is up to you. I'll be happy to watch.

The only thing Ford I'd put in it is a 9 inch rear. Quick Performance makes a bolt in 9 inch housing for that thing for about $400 bucks. My buddy has a 1977 Ventura with a Pontiac 455 and we put one of Quick Performance's 9 inch rears under his. Works great.

Nice Score!!
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
Definitely needs an Olds 455 and a B.O.P. 350 trans. How wild you want to go with the build is up to you. I'll be happy to watch.

The only thing Ford I'd put in it is a 9 inch rear. Quick Performance makes a bolt in 9 inch housing for that thing for about $400 bucks. My buddy has a 1977 Ventura with a Pontiac 455 and we put one of Quick Performance's 9 inch rears under his. Works great.

Nice Score!!
Thanks, Chris. Already got a 9 inch lined up, but it's in Alaska with the billet TH2004R for my Mach 1's 552. They're old parts out of my brother's Grand National I'm going to get from him eventually (He's stepping up to another custom built 9 and another TH2004R that'll take the power a little better, he should be in that 800 hp range this summer.) Really, really thinking about keeping a small block, about 300 hp, as I've got the Mach 1 to go fast with. I want to swap to an 84 front end on this....The Hurst/Olds cars were sweet, and the front end is much better looking than this one.

I'm flying up to Alaska for Christmas this year. Wonder if the trans and rear would pass as "carry on" luggage for the way back haha.....
 

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Thanks, Chris. Already got a 9 inch lined up, but it's in Alaska with the billet TH2004R for my Mach 1's 552. They're old parts out of my brother's Grand National I'm going to get from him eventually (He's stepping up to another custom built 9 and another TH2004R that'll take the power a little better, he should be in that 800 hp range this summer.) Really, really thinking about keeping a small block, about 300 hp, as I've got the Mach 1 to go fast with. I want to swap to an 84 front end on this....The Hurst/Olds cars were sweet, and the front end is much better looking than this one.

I'm flying up to Alaska for Christmas this year. Wonder if the trans and rear would pass as "carry on" luggage for the way back haha.....
Yep... That TH2004R is the way to go. That is what I should have said. That overdrive will be nice and make it as easy on the gas as it can be.

Good call on the 9 inch rear end.
 

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Forget the 260 Olds....

My suggestion would be to build a Olds 400 or 425. They seem to be somewhat overlooked and forgotten and that equates to cheap. The 400/425 has done well in Engine Masters as the builders have found a decent amount of power/torque from these and it would not detract from the value of your car. To try and make the 260 into a decent performer would be an excersize in futility and a monumental waste of money.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
My suggestion would be to build a Olds 400 or 425. They seem to be somewhat overlooked and forgotten and that equates to cheap. The 400/425 has done well in Engine Masters as the builders have found a decent amount of power/torque from these and it would not detract from the value of your car. To try and make the 260 into a decent performer would be an excersize in futility and a monumental waste of money.
Agreed. Not going to do anything to the 260 (well, I turned the timing up 2 degrees and flipped the air cleaner lid upside down, does that count as modding? haha). Sounds like with a big block in, I'll have hood clearance issues, and it's just going to be my daily driver so don't want to go sinking money into a new hood or doing the bond-on cowl scoop thing....just going to flog the little 260 through the winter and get back to the new engine part in the spring....
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Yep... That TH2004R is the way to go. That is what I should have said. That overdrive will be nice and make it as easy on the gas as it can be.

Good call on the 9 inch rear end.
Yeah, the 2004R is really a overlooked swap, and they can be built to take some serious power. Anything is going to help with the 9 mpg I get down the highway with my 3.90 rear gears haha.....and I do drive the Mustang quite a bit in the summer. I got 3000 miles put on in under 2 months once I finally got the 552 in and running. It's too much fun with the deep gears to pull them out, so an overdrive is the answer for me.

Lucas
 

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This is my first car. still have it but it needs some work. sorry about the crappy pic but its a pic of a pic lol. This was after I painted it & took of some of the trim. It had a 305 in it at the time. It now has a 350 and a ford 9" rear end.

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