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 Post subject: V6 imagineering
PostPosted: Wed Oct 31, 2018 10:06 pm 
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I'm brand new to the forum but I have spent quite a bit of time here. I have a 1980 Luv 4x4 with manual transmission. I have read through a few posts referring to engine swaps but I could find none dedicated to an overall "To v6 or not to v6" discussion. I know that the 80's Buick V6 is a popular swap, but surely that's not the only one.

First, here's my personal truck plans:
I want to make it a super capable 4x4 in that I want to drive it to town on the highway, load the bed with whatever, come home, drop the load down by the pond, without getting stuck if it has rained recently, and maybe not scare away all of the woodland creatures in the process. After that I would like to go out into a pasture and maybe do some power slides, which will surely scare those woodland creatures. If I see a trail through the woods I would like to follow it without being too tall or wide for the trail. In short, I want more agile suspension without a huge lift, I want capable tires without being straight boggers or oversized ATs, and I want an engine that can launch it like a rocket without adding incredible weight or design changes.

For the engine, I have always pictured a 3800 or even 4.3 vortec with a super or turbo charger, like maybe from a late 90's Grand Prix. I don't want a V8 because I really don't think it's right for the design I'm shooting for. Those Buick engines from the Grand Nationals are of course nice, but if unavailable in my area I would like to know other options. I have no interest in keeping an Isuzu 4cyl engine behind my Chevy badge. I know the whole truck is Isuzu, but...well, you know, " 'Merica! ", or whatever. My own Chevy truck project needs a Chevy/GM engine.

I understand there will be modification with any swap, and with any recommendations I would be glad to hear of those and any considerations you already know for it, but I'm not necessarily looking for a how to manual. I simply would like to know suggestions on good V6 U-Pull-It motors to start with before even getting into transmissions and such.

I'll start with asking if anyone has attempted one of those supercharged 3800 Vortecs out of the late 90's GrandPrix...?


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 Post subject: Re: V6 imagineering
PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2018 8:43 am 
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Joined: Wed Sep 06, 2017 6:40 pm
Posts: 142
Location: Bellingham, WA
It's gonna be SOOOO much easier just to lift the body off the frame and put it on a 4.3L Chevy S-10 frame.

ALL of the Isuzu drive train components are going to have to go. This includes the front independent suspended drive axle. The stock tans/xfer are not going to hold up. I killed 3 with a slightly breathed on original engine. A lot of others say the rear axle isn't going to hold up (I never had a problem with mine). And those CV joints on the front barely hold up to a stock engine with a Weber, let alone more than that.

So, by the time you do a solid axle swap on the front, match something to go in the back, and figure all the mounts for the trans, xfer case and engine, it would be a LOT better to just go with something that already has all what you want in it and strap the body onto it.


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 Post subject: Re: V6 imagineering
PostPosted: Thu Nov 01, 2018 5:07 pm 
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I seriously never even considered a swap to an S10 frame but that makes a lot of sense. I see them available for sale cheap enough, often enough, and then I wouldn't be retrofitting every single piece I ever work on. I was already concerned about if the overall truck would be able to handle much more engine without a bunch of upgrades. If I did go this route I can imagine turning what's left of the LUV into some sort of creation that would have some people in awe and some people looking to commit me. Ideas for that will be a whole other thread topic once I get to that point.

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