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  #16  
Old 07-25-2002, 09:01 PM
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Larry,
Tks for the info. I am obviously hoping that I don't have to make such a conversion, but, I would not shy away from the opportunity. Another nice engine is the 3.8 lt Buick. It is the same engine used originally in the Range Rover. It is light and can be tweeked substantially. There is a soon to be scrap 450slc in the next town over that I can get for nearly free. It might be worth the effort to buy it and practice a conversion on it. I don't know if there is any market for such a conversion as there is with the Jag/Chevy. I think the MB owners are probably more brand loyal than Jagers. I am going to start on a new 30x60ft. shop in the pasture behind the house. Once I get a concrete floor under me I might take on such a project.
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  #17  
Old 07-25-2002, 10:08 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2001
Location: Evansville, Indiana
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Kip:

The main reason for the chevy jag is that the V12 jag is a problem engine, unbelievably expensive to work on, and defectively designed (on top of being a VERY tight fit, it overheats due to cooling jacket design problems). Much, much cheaper to get a 350 in there than fix the fried V12.

Ditto for a 350 in a Volvo Diesel when the diesel dies -- rebuild cost is $5000 or so, not including labor, and even the turbodiesel is marginal on power. Great milage, but 105 hp just won't drag it fast enough for most folks.

None of the above applies to a 450slc.

Peter
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1972 220D ?? miles
1988 300E 200,012
1987 300D Turbo killed 9/25/07, 275,000 miles
1985 Volvo 740 GLE Turobodiesel 218,000
1972 280 SE 4.5 165, 000 - It runs!
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  #18  
Old 07-26-2002, 07:23 AM
LarryBible
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kip,

I assume you are talking about the Buick V6. I know nothing about the configuration of the engine as far as sump location, etc., but they are very well thought of engines. The engine was designed for the Buick Special that came out in 1961 or so, so it is probably somewhat compact. The tooling was sold to British Leyland in the seventies and bought back in the eighties. They then reconfigured the crankshaft to have a symmetric firing order (equal number of degrees between engine firings) As a result of this, the crankshaft looks very strange. It looks like the journals were sawed in half, offset and then glued back together. Although it looks strange, it obviously has worked out quite well. The Grand National Buick of the eighties used this as the engine platform and was one of the fastest production cars on the street.

I have been wanting to build a new shop for several years. My shop is only '22 by 40' and doubles as a wood shop. I move woodworking equipment to the side when it comes auto major project time. If I put a few cars in the weather temporarily I can use the shop for both. 30 X 60 with four bays is what I want to build with doors on both sides to get plenty of breeze in the Texas Summer. My current shop has 16' doors on the North and South ends. It gets the prevailing South wind through to help cool it. I'm envious of your shop project, hopefully I can follow suit soon.

Have a great day,
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  #19  
Old 07-26-2002, 01:17 PM
M D Nugent
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Post Mo' pages on swaps

Here's more grist for the mill:
www.carcentric.com/450SLswap.htm
www.geocities.com/benzswap/
and the direction I'm going after deciding against an American V8 swap:
www.carcentric.com/MB2MBswap.htm

For either of the two carcentric.com pages, if you spot errors or have something to add, please email me directly at my350SL@yahoo.com - and thanks!

M D "Doc" Nugent
Renton, WA
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  #20  
Old 07-26-2002, 01:45 PM
LarryBible
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I quickly perused Mr. Nugents link. Another point came out that is in favor of the fit of a small Ford. That is the oil filter on the Chevy interferes with the steering box. The Ford oil filter is on the left front of the motor in a better location for the swap. The Power Steering pump is also in the same spot as the MB's, I would use the Ford pump and simply adapt the hoses.

The Ford alternator is also in a convenient location for wiring. I expect the a/c compressor is also in the correct location. Any of these items can be moved anywhere there is no interference, but is much more easily and cleanly accomplished if they are in the same location.

There may be some GM loyalty here that is disallowing the Ford engine as a possibility in spite of the practicality. I since that because of the 3.8 Buick suggestion. If you're dead set against a Ford V8, speak up and I'll stop pointing out the practicality of it.

Everything else being equal I would prefer an SBC because of the wider availability and interchangability of speed and replacement parts, but the if the fit of a Ford is more practical, the Ford engine is a very good engine. There again, sometimes brand loyalty will prohibit such thinking.

Good luck,
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  #21  
Old 07-26-2002, 02:12 PM
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i believe that rover / buick v8 in question is the all aluminum one that displaces about 3.5L and still in use on rovers. the original design was the buick-olds 215 which has been out of production for some time but i think can still be found. it is a light, compact engine that is a favorite for british car V8 conversions - specifically MG's...
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Last edited by jsmith; 07-26-2002 at 02:20 PM.
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  #22  
Old 07-26-2002, 03:58 PM
LarryBible
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I'm aware of the 215, it was all the rage in the early sixties in the F85. It was turbo charged and water injected. He just said 3.8 and I assumed he was talking about the V6. It was a neat engine.

I remember seeing an article in a magazine several years back about interchangibility of parts and hop up parts for the little V8. I don't think the engine needs to be THAT compact, and I expect stuff would not be very readily available as a small block Ford or Chevy.

Have a great day,
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  #23  
Old 07-27-2002, 10:30 PM
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Location: S. Texas
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There is not any Chevy loyality in particular. I am mostly only loyal to price. I know people that swear by one brand or the other and neither seems to have any better luck than the other. I think brand loyality is mostly what one makes of it. I do all my own repairs so I become loyal to what ever is the easiest to fix. I have 2 Chrysler mini vans with a total of about 325K miles. Aside from the tranmissions they are great cars. I also have 2 20 year old Chevy Diesel trucks. I can't say that I would buy another but I manage to keep both running.
I think your observations about the Ford are as good a reason to look at them as any. As I said in my last post, I am not looking to undertake such a swap, but, given the right situation I would not turn it down.
I spent from 1970 until 1990 overseas so I am quite out of touch with all the new car engines (can tell you what is hot is 20K hp marine engines). A quick scan through one of the many hotrod mags. will really open one's eyes. I remember when the first 327ci./350hp Chevy came out and when Don Garlits ran the first 180 mph quarter. We all thought that that was just about as far an humans could go. Now I see that they are getting 1hp/ci out of a Riobi weed whacker engine converted to a model airplane engine, and 6Khp and 315mph out of a dragster. Will wonders never end.
In regard to the Buick engine I thought that the original aluminum engine was a 3.5 v8 that was later bored out to 3.8, but I may be wrong. I seem to remember that the original engine had a narrower V than the std. V8 which made if a good choice for putting into MGs, Austins and Triumphs. Regardless, there is a bunch of nice little engines that, with the proper tweeking, might make a very interesting conversion into a slc.
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  #24  
Old 07-28-2002, 04:18 AM
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Location: Battle Ground, WA
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Chevy Swap into Mercedes...

Hi Kip,
You might be interested in checking out my web page, which details the conversion of my 1982 Mercedes 300D to a chevy 4.3L V6 with t700R4 transmission. I experienced none of the dramatic problems everyone has implied might happen, and the conversion has been on the road for almost 2 years now with absolutely no problems at all. I've literally not had to change or add anything to this conversion, the only side effect being that the front of the car sits high enough so I wore the tread off the front tires prematurely before I noticed. (I didn't think about alignment until after I replaced the tires!) I made up an exhaust manifold for the drivers side that comes up above the steering box and then down to the crossover pipe - the passenger side worked fine as-is. I used a TBI engine, and installed the fuel pump up on the driver's side fender well, so the pressurized line is less than 2 feet long. (only 13 psi with TBI, so no problem anyway...) The t700R4 transmission works great with the 4.3L V6, and the car gets extremely good mileage and has plenty of power, much more than with the turbo diesel. I am very happy with the conversion, and it drives very well.

The site URL: http://pages.prodigy.net/rwooldridge/mercedes.htm
The total cost of this conversion was under $900.00, and took me about a month of spare time messing around. I got a good deal on the engine I used, and didn't bother to touch it before installing it in the car, a gamble that paid off with no problems afterwards. I'm not sure how much more your car weighs, but suspect it might be in the 300 - 500 lb range. You might consider the 4.3L if you can find one cheap enough! (Mine came out of a Chevy Astrovan.) I'm in my 60's also, and found the conversion an interesting project that paid off handsomely.

Regards, Richard Wooldridge

1982 300D/4.3L Mercedes
1977 XJ6L Jaguar
1977 280Z Datsun 2+2
1985 GMC S15 pickup
1994 Ford Taurus (Wife's car)
1988 Chev Astrovan
1967 Clark Cortez Motorhome!
1986 Kubota DIESEL tractor.... See, I really DO like diesels!
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  #25  
Old 07-28-2002, 04:32 AM
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Location: Battle Ground, WA
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Aluminum engine...

Hi again,
I forgot to mention that that aluminum engine was the 215 ci V8 that GM produced in two versions from 1961 through 1963... I have one in my garage, waiting for some worthy project. They were great little engines, the 1963 Olds engine produced 200 hp at 10,500 rpm stock from the factory, with no turbo, just the 4bbl engine. (That's the one I have.) It only weighs 275 lbs without the exhaust headers. The buick version had different heads and intake manifold, but was basically the same engine. In 1964 Buick came out with a 300CI cast iron block with aluminum heads - if you can find the 1964 heads and install them on a 1963 aluminum block you have a real good starting point for lots of power, as the 1964 heads had much larger valves. With a bit of work, you can also put the 1964 crank in the 1963 engine for a stroker engine. These were very popular with the sand drag folks. GM sold the castings to Rover, and when the gas crunch hit they tried to buy them back, but Rover wouldn't sell... They have added more ci to the engine, and also added fuel injection, but it's still the same basic engine.

Sorry to get off the Mercedes track, but I thought I'd try to clear up the confusion.... The Buick I think people have talked about is indeed the 3.8 V6, it's a fine engine also.

Richard Wooldridge
Etc... - see previous post
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  #26  
Old 07-28-2002, 11:35 PM
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richard,

i enjoyed the pages that detailed your conversion project. also, find it interesting that you actually have a 215. there are a few rebuild kits available for it, even strokers. i think that kip originally was thinking about this v8 as that engine is a well known compact and light design. ...
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1993 300e-2.8
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"Do not adjust your mind, it's reality that's malfunctioning"
http://banners.wunderground.com/bann...L/Key_West.gif
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