Author Topic: motor change feasibility  (Read 667 times)

Offline kkkaiser

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motor change feasibility
« on: June 12, 2017, 07:27:14 PM »
Hi

I was wondering the feasibility of putting a modern engine into 60s or so cadillac.  Not a hot rod or anything, but something more basic, crate engine or whatever they call them.  say, an engine from a 2015 or so, truck or so car.  i have found i really like the rides of these behemoths,,,,but i fret over reliability.  I have to drive to MS from MT twice a year,, would love to take the eldo, but I'm not sure it would make the 30 hours of driving, plus 13 miles a gallon would cost a fortune.   despite having  a reman engine,, (my2005 diesel has one and i sweat it as well, but it has 315k on the transmission),, i have no interesting modernizing the electronic, keep all the old, powered but he new..

I've seen it on a few tv shows, and it seems plausible, and with what seems huge engine compartments, the smaller engines of today seem they would fit.

has anyone thought of such, or done it before,, (not on the eldo,, but one of the 60s sleds)

i just noticed the earlier thread on similar topic,, just wanted to say i am not into the lowering,, or any of that stuff.. just the engine to a more (theoretical) reliable long distance ride, and if trouble comes up, i can get into shop while on the road..

Sincerely

Kim

« Last Edit: June 12, 2017, 07:32:52 PM by kkkaiser »

Offline tturley

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Re: motor change feasibility
« Reply #1 on: June 12, 2017, 07:35:09 PM »
Kim,
There is a clc modified page where posters there do that on a regular basis. I think you will get more help there
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Offline Alan Harris CLC#1513

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Re: motor change feasibility
« Reply #2 on: June 12, 2017, 07:37:17 PM »
These cars in their natural state are extremely reliable.

Offline chrisntam

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Re: motor change feasibility
« Reply #3 on: June 12, 2017, 07:38:24 PM »
You'd have to fabricate the mounts for the engine/trans.  You'd have to interface the new electrical of the engine to the existing harness.  Exhaust, driveshaft, fuel system (tank work).

Too much for me to do and I don't have the financial means to write the check to have someone do it.

Anyone wanna guess the cost?  $40k?  $50k?
1970 Deville Convertible  MTS 507
Dallas, Texas

Offline 35-709

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Re: motor change feasibility
« Reply #4 on: June 12, 2017, 07:45:45 PM »
Yur better off with wat-choo got!  Plus you risk ruining the value of the car.
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Offline The Tassie Devil(le)

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Re: motor change feasibility
« Reply #5 on: June 12, 2017, 07:46:03 PM »
One of the problems with replacing a modern engine is the ride quality does suffer.

My '60 CDV had a 454 and TH400 in it when I purchased the car, and even though the installation wasn't that bad, I wasn't happy with a few things.

I managed to purchase a 1961 390, and a '60 transmission, and after rebuilding both, I began the transplant.

When completed, the ride quality of the car was totally improved, and the performance of the 390 combination as against the 454/TH400 was hard to describe.   BUT, the 390 had superior performance.

The ride quality was improved simply by the added mass of the 390/Hydro held the suspension where it was designed to be, and the performance of the Hydro, being a 4 speed, got the car off the line much smoother.

When the original transplant was made, they didn't bother to change the diff ratio, recalibrate the front springs, and the lighter weight over the front made for a harsher ride.

There is nothing like the low-end torque of these old 390's to get the vehicle moving.

Bruce. >:D
'72 Eldorado Convertible (LHD)
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Offline chrisntam

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Re: motor change feasibility
« Reply #6 on: June 12, 2017, 07:56:30 PM »
These cars in their natural state are extremely reliable.

In general, I agree, but a popular topic here is vapor lock.  Something about todays fuels vs. yesterdays fuels and the need for an electric fuel pump.

What about fuel mileage?  10 to 13 on the highway vs. 25 to 30?  I suppose if you can afford the swap you can also afford the fuel......

It'd be nice to the best of both worlds....
1970 Deville Convertible  MTS 507
Dallas, Texas

Offline The Tassie Devil(le)

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Re: motor change feasibility
« Reply #7 on: June 12, 2017, 08:07:16 PM »
Don't forget that these cars weigh 2 1/4 Tons, and the engines that are being substituted are designed for vehicles weighing half that.   

Fuel economy cannot be gained unless multiple modifications are performed, and one must take into account the cost of the alterations, and work out the actual cost of savings per mile, and you will be surprised just how long it takes to start saving money.

Yes, immediate savings at the petrol pump are there, but it takes many years to cover the actual cost of the modifications.

Bruce. >:D
'72 Eldorado Convertible (LHD)
'70 Ranchero Squire (RHD)
'55 Buick Special Post Coupe (LHD)
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Offline Carl Fielding

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Re: motor change feasibility
« Reply #8 on: June 12, 2017, 10:47:06 PM »
Kim , what year exactly do you propose modifying ?  - Carl

Offline Alex053

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Re: motor change feasibility
« Reply #9 on: June 12, 2017, 11:02:00 PM »
You can do a 6.0 LQ4 from a chevy truck or an LQ9 from an Escalde into about anything for 10 to 12 grand . You could go with a 5.3 or 4.8 LS from a truck as well for a few grand less.   The compete motor with harness and gas pedal are in the $1800 range used. $2500 reconditioned.
1957 Coupe Deville - Mountain Laurel with a white roof

Offline kkkaiser

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Re: motor change feasibility
« Reply #10 on: June 13, 2017, 01:32:39 AM »
well,, i found a 61,, in denver,, it was 4 door,, obviously, it needs some work, but i cant make up the learning curve of 20 - 40 years of car enthusiam and knowledge in one, tow or 5 years.  so, i thought maybe this may be a feasible route,,i really like fins,,,,https://denver.craigslist.org/cto/6164646876.html but a 59 is just out of the question.  the owner sent me a video,, only visible bubbling of rust is on the top next to the passenger window on top,like next to the "gutter" where the door meets the top,, it may be a total dog,,,, i am at a disadvantage, as I have nowhere to work,,i.e., garage...so heavy lifting etc is out of the question....interior a little rough, needs interior work,, but steering wheel is in tact, (no badge in center).  i was thinking about thronging him a offer, like low,, 1k 1.5k..

i like my eldo,, if i knew a way to make it more reliable,, like a 30 hour ride confidence, i would do what is necessary, (oil changes, etc) but  i know i cant make it bullet proof,, all cars break down,,my diesel left me stranded at  midnight between raton pass NM and stateline texas once,, but, there is a certain confidence in 15 year old ( modern) and 40 plus year old. i trailered it back to MS last nov and back again to MT in april.

I'm just not as much a purist,,i like the old look, the old interiors, but the old engines scare me due to my lack of engine mechanics and understanding,, i hate to be ignorant about stuff!!   i understand the weight vs power concept,,, i understand a lot of other peripheral items related to this,, just was wondering from technicians,, was this a better idea or dying to revive an old engine, transmission, not knowing history, etc.. a body i can work with, i can learn and can do labor, but mechanics is a learned art of many years...

Offline Scot Minesinger

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Re: motor change feasibility
« Reply #11 on: June 13, 2017, 07:10:09 AM »
There was a 1968 DeVille with a modern LS1 engine transplant from a V series Cadillac in it at GN 2016, and I talked with owner - he has posted on this forum.  The work that went into the transplant was monumental, and it would be far easier to just rebuild a 472 and be done with it.  Just as an example the modern engine/trans is taller and extensive mods to frame and trans tunnel in body were required.  Then add trans shifter interface, fuel and etc...nightmare. 

There was a thread about how to install a 1978 Cadillac 425 into a 1983 Cadillac RWD that had a 4.1 and it was no picnic.

I have driven my 1970 DVC 40k miles since 2005 now and it is very reliable, and engine power is more than enough to keep up with modern traffic.
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Offline The Tassie Devil(le)

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Re: motor change feasibility
« Reply #12 on: June 13, 2017, 07:45:06 AM »

...... but the old engines scare me due to my lack of engine mechanics and understanding,,
Boy, the old engines are the simplest around when compared with the newer stuff.

Once you get into computer and electronics and the like, it gets very technical.

Bruce. >:D
'72 Eldorado Convertible (LHD)
'70 Ranchero Squire (RHD)
'55 Buick Special Post Coupe (LHD)
'74 Chris Craft Gull Wing RHH
(Past President Modified Chapter)

Offline kkkaiser

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Re: motor change feasibility
« Reply #13 on: June 13, 2017, 01:49:57 PM »
well, y'all have talked me out of that!!

do or would any of you take your 60 -75 year model on a three day 30 hour drive,, ?   

i know you have confidence in your own work, but can these older rigs handle that kind of road time over three days,,, i guess that is what i am trying to get it....


Offline Dan LeBlanc

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Re: motor change feasibility
« Reply #14 on: June 13, 2017, 02:07:59 PM »
That's what they were built for when new!  As long as everything is in good repair, you should be fine.
Dan LeBlanc - CLC # 27657
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Offline Alex053

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Re: motor change feasibility
« Reply #15 on: June 13, 2017, 02:12:15 PM »
Boy, the old engines are the simplest around when compared with the newer stuff.

Once you get into computer and electronics and the like, it gets very technical.

Bruce. >:D

really?  check out my post on my 57 that i cant get to run.  good luck finding anyone that knows how to work on it, correct parts that you can get cheap and easy or any sort of troubleshooting other than "i once knew a guy who had a similar problem and he did this"

versus hook up a scan tool, it tells you what the problem is, buy the part and plug it in.  all while making reliable power, good millage and not having my kids complain they smell like gas anytime we get somewhere.

if i had the money, id have a modern drive train.  i dont so my car sits broke for months at a time while i track down the tools to try and troubleshoot the issue hoping to limp it along until the next leak / breakdown.
1957 Coupe Deville - Mountain Laurel with a white roof

Offline Steve Passmore

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Re: motor change feasibility
« Reply #16 on: June 13, 2017, 03:58:40 PM »
well, y'all have talked me out of that!!

do or would any of you take your 60 -75 year model on a three day 30 hour drive,, ?   

i know you have confidence in your own work, but can these older rigs handle that kind of road time over three days,,, i guess that is what i am trying to get it....

I would take my 1937 60 series flathead V8 on such a trip without giving it a second thought. The only thing that would prevent me is the cost in this country of the fuel and the fact that after 15 hours driving in this country one would fall into the sea ;D
Steve

Offline Carl Fielding

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Re: motor change feasibility
« Reply #17 on: June 13, 2017, 04:20:01 PM »
Kim , you are talking about Cadillacs here. I have had Cadillacs from the '20s , '30s , '40s , '50s , '60s , '70s , '90s , and on into the 21st Century. They have been my daily drivers since my '39 and '49 in high school almost 60 years ago. My friend Steve hung the "Cadillac Carl" handle on me back in '71 or '72 when I drove up in the '57 Eldo Bi'z which I had just purchased for $500 , to take the daily driver spot from the gorgeous '49 fastback which had cost me $250. Just great old used cars back then. The only one which broke my heart was my exquisite 2002 STS. Northstar , 4T80E issues. I overreacted on that one , and misplayed my hand. Turned my back on the then modern Cads , and jumped right out of the pan into the drivers seat of a mighty fire breathing 400 h.p. Mercedes-Benz. That one is .................... Uhhhh , I was,about to say something VERY complimentary about 2007 & 2008 E550s , but CADILLACS here. I really should have fixed the STS. So safe and comfortable. And handle ? I'm here to tell you ! I had rented one of these new (I always like to rent new Cads when I travel - consider it to be a peep into my future - in order to test drive them extensively) , and loved it so much. It was a gut shot when it let me down. No Cadillac had ever failed me before. Uh oh ! I'm running out of time and starting to ramble a bit. The point I will elaborate on , is that all my other Cads went ANYwhere and EVERYwhere you can conceive of , and then some. If I survive the rest of the day , I'll be back to further ease your mind. In the meantime , tell me the years of your Cads , the mileage , and condition in your opinion on a 0 - 10 scale , 0 being a rusted out , stripped down hulk out in the woods , 10 being a brand spanking new one on the showroom floor with 19 miles on it. ALWAYS put your money in the very best old Cadillac you can find. That is if you like to drive them. If you have an enormous amount of money and time , and prefer working on cars to driving them , go get a "bargain" Cadillac at 1/2 or 1/4 the price of a properly maintained low mileage beauty. (In the end you will have 2 - 4 times the money in the former , and it STILL will not be as nice as the latter). Please do not inferr a value judgement here , I know guys who really don't like driving at all (!!!) , but love to save beat-up ugly ducklings I wouldn't even salvage any of their worn-out parts from - I have utmost respect for these guys , if they follow through with the decades of effort and scores of thousands of bucks spent , if they were not experts on the particular car they have spent all of their discretionary time and money on when they began as a relatively young man , now the old wise man will have become one of the world authorities on the particular model. If they start out with unrealistic understanding , they will perform certain tasks multiple times. For example , they may be smart enough to have the radiator rebuilt when they put in the 3rd waterpump , but not go deeper to do the timing chain. 1000 miles later , out it all comes again. And then , after chasing their tail round and round and round and round , they realize they are in it so deep that the engine really must be rebuilt anyway. They finally yank it for an overhaul , and now wiser , they do the trans on the beater at the same time too. On the 0 - 10 scale , some guys buy what appears to be say a 6 , which really has so much neglect and deferred maintenance as , say a 4 , that they may never get it right. A low mileage 7 or 8 will keep you wrenching from time to time , but you will get to drive it a lot. A well sorted 8 or 9 will be the most economical purchase in the long run. You will literally be able to drive that Cadillac around the World. I gather you prefer driving to working on them. Me too. It's a little like fiberglass boats and wooden boats. I love sailing. I love wooden boats. Fiberglass boats keep you busy enough. I love looking at wooden boats. I gaze at them in the boatyard. If I had the fortune I made on the tech bubble on the upside , and Amazon off the bottom where it settled after Monday's bubble burst at $6(!!!) , yes , in at 6 before the recovery started , yeah if I still had that fortune , I would still get no closer to the work , er , I mean wood boats than the boatyard. Some guys really do take pride in their shipwrights skills , though. I prefer sailing them over working on them. Same with my Cadillacs. I really should have hung-up earlier. Bye for now.  - Carl
« Last Edit: June 13, 2017, 04:32:10 PM by Carl Fielding »

Offline Carl Fielding

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Re: motor change feasibility
« Reply #18 on: June 13, 2017, 04:52:58 PM »
Bottom line , Kim , I (we all) really need to know what year(s) , condition , mileage of your intended cruiser(s). Oh , and Alex : a well sorted '57 & '58 is a very reliable Cadillac to this day. Just make sure that subframe crossmember that carries the lower A-arms is already beefed up on these years. They can start developing cracks. Do it if not so improved already.  - Carl

Offline V63

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Re: motor change feasibility
« Reply #19 on: June 13, 2017, 05:17:35 PM »
This is an opportune time and an answer to your concerns.

FUEL INJECTION!

Several companies are now churning out these wonderful FI units! They are self tuning and diagnostics! Your kids won't smell like fuel! One of the major issues limiting older cars is fuel management, it's largely why they were generally wore out by 100k. Look on YouTube and several 4bbl cars roll in 'carbonated' and roll out fuel injected. I have done a couple now myself and one was a a 57 eldorado...HUGE difference and just wonderful to drive!

Price range runs $1,000-$2,000 for a do it yourself weekend project.