Small Block to Big Swap
is nothing like opening the hood of a nice Camaro and seeing those fat
valve covers of a big block. There are many advantages to making the
switch from small block to big block power like the monster torque
available under your right foot and that unmistakable rumble
in the Day there was no substitute for cubic inches in any kind of car,
in fact the saying went "Theres no replacement for displacement."The
only thing that kept you from owning a big-block was, much as today,
the wallet-bending dollar. Much of the car-crazy public had to settle
for a small block (307, 327, or 350) . Today, many of those who dreamed
of a 396, 427, or the awe-inspiring 454 are taking that giant leap by
doing what man has done for decades - the engine swap!
small block to big block swap in any Chevy is relatively easy, provided
you have all the necessary tools and parts & some Brains!. When performing this swap
in the Camaro,STEVES CAMAROS has just what the doctor ordered.
Tool-wise you'll need access to an engine hoist, an engine stand, jack
stands, floor jack, 1 or 2 sets of sockets and wrenches, and maybe a
few other common mechanic's tools.
Parts needed will include 2 major items that are critical to this operation: the motor mounts and the engine frame mounts.
engine frame mounts are particular to the big block engine and also
differ between the 67/68 style and the 69 style. The big block-style
mounts pull the engine forward away from the firewall and also tilt the
engine towards the passenger side (RH side) of the car to make up for
the large amount of torque produced by the larger cube engines. Many
people have tried to drop in a big block using small block mounts only
to discover "no room" between the back of the block and the firewall
and the side of the block and the heater core cover - not to mention
only 1/4 to 1/2 normal throttle response. Correct frame mounts cure
this problem. The mounts are available from STEVES CAMAROS (sold as
pairs) under Part Numbers #110560(1967-68), #110570(1969). These mounts
can be used with either original GM or reproduction motor mounts.
your not going HEATER DELETE and you want to keep your heater you'll
also need a new heater core and Big Block Heater cover. On original factory big-block
cars without A/C, Chevrolet put the heater hose outlet very close to
the passenger side fender - versus right next to the engine block like the small block cars. So to KEEP the heater you need both the big-block heater core (Part #
150120 for 67-68 non air and Part#150150 for 69 non/air) and the big
block heater box (Part # 150010)for 67-69 Camaros, and are available from us.
utilizing power steering on your Camaro with a big block, you will need
the correct power steering pump brackets and pulleys. Once a hard part
to find, STEVE'S now makes it easy! On 67-68 cars, order pump cradle
bracket #110650 and adjuster brace #110660. For '69's, use kit #110710
and your problems are solved. 1969 cars used a big block-only power
steering pump, while 67-68's with V8 all used the same pump. Get pulley
#111680 and you'll have that end covered, too.
An often asked question on this swap is: "Why does my engine sit offset 1 inch to the side?" This problem only
seems to arise when the small block frame mounts are used.
To ensure proper alignment of the transmission, unbolt the cross member until after the engine is in place. In some instances,
new alignment holes may have to be drilled, but again, not until after the engine is in.
should also replace your front springs with a stiffer set for the Big
Block to ensure proper steering and load handling (Part #251110)and
don't forget your new radiator or at the very least the B.B. Fan Shroud
(Part #070380 for 67-68 and Part #070390 for 69)
last two items involved with this swap are the exhaust system and
accelerator linkage. These will depend on the set-up you chose (I.E.:
Headers or manifolds; Mechanical or cable linkage) just remember for
your piece of mind, there are no headers for a big block camaro
1967-1969 that will clear the power steering box with out modification.
Aside from minor adjustments and owner-chosen accessories, like radiators, hoses, fan shrouds, Just use your smarts, that pretty much finishes the swap. Remember that almost everything
is available from STEVES CAMAROS.
Also If your car is a manual car(stick shift) you will need to change the Z-bar (part# 260030) and lower push rod (part# 260730) you should be able to reuse your old return spring just leave off the extension!