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  #1  
Old 06-24-2011, 07:24 PM
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Engine swap 108 280SE to a 4.5.

So we have a really beat up 72 280SE 4.5. We found a 72 280SE on CL and are thinking of buying it and putting our 4.5 in it.

The earlier 108's were a tad narrower and the by 72 they were widened slightly for the V-8. But our question is this:

Are all 108's in 72 the same width?

We don't imagine that there were different widths of 108's. But would like to ask here and be sure.

While we're at it, would I need to swap out the rear end/trans/drive line as well?

Thank you!

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Old 07-10-2011, 04:31 AM
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Well, thanks for the overwhelming response.

Just in case someone searches this in the future, all 108's are the same width in given years.

Your 4.5 will go fine in a 280SE/SEL.
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Old 07-11-2011, 02:17 AM
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As you said, in given years!

I think psfred pointed out (it was years ago so don't kill me if it was someone else) that 108's pre V8 (3.5/4.5/6.3) years had the brake booster closer to the engine compartment, and this can get in the way, and the booster was re-located starting in 1968 for 1969 model year vehicles to accomodate V8 engines.

You won't need to swap the rear end but you really should, unless you want super-high revs. You will need to swap the transmission, the 6-cyl one will not only not bolt up but it won't handle the power of the V8. Basically, anything directly attached to the engine or trans should leave the donor and go into the destination vehicle including fuel plumbing and the pump, ECU / wiring, and the aforementioned items.
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Old 07-13-2011, 01:00 AM
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It's a complete and total waste of time but each to their own. Decent 4.5's can be had and they aren't that rare where you wouldn't be able to find one.
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Old 07-13-2011, 11:18 PM
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I suppose it depends where you live. If I could find a rust-free good-bodied 108 with a bad engine that didn't cost me $1000 to ship from Cali & I bought for say $500, it'd be worth doing the engine swap from mine. But in other areas, that isn't the case. Personally if I were going to go through the effort of swapping an engine & trans I'd probably throw in a 5.0 or 5.6 m117 instead and just swap the 4.5 rear in.
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Old 07-14-2011, 03:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tomguy View Post
I suppose it depends where you live. If I could find a rust-free good-bodied 108 with a bad engine that didn't cost me $1000 to ship from Cali & I bought for say $500, it'd be worth doing the engine swap from mine. But in other areas, that isn't the case. Personally if I were going to go through the effort of swapping an engine & trans I'd probably throw in a 5.0 or 5.6 m117 instead and just swap the 4.5 rear in.
Your response was much nicer than the one I deleted.

We have a pretty beat up 4.5 that is a father/son project. A 280SE of the same year came up for $1000 that had great interior, no rust, and just a blown engine. It would have saved us a lot of money in the long run. Especially since we know our engine, trans, and rear end to be in great condition.

There are not a lot of 108's that come up here...except those that are in marginal condition but the owner is obviously very proud of it judging by the price.

The deal fell through, but would have been worth it. We're not looking for a daily driver from the time the car is bought; we're looking for something to spend time on.

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