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MGB V6 & V8 Conversion FAQ

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Skye Avatar
Skye Webmaster Skye Nott
Vancouver, BC, Canada   CAN
1964 Vespa VNB 125
1966 MG MGB "The Bomber RIP"
1983 Suzuki MC GS750E "Kate"
1986 Merkur XR4Ti "The Rally Car"    & more
Mike Young suggested I start a sticky in this forum to provide some basic info and links to various threads that would cover a lot of the same questions that get asked over and over about big-engine conversions. Please read on below for some great posts covering the basics of MGB engine swaps.



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scotabbott Avatar
scotabbott Scot Abbott
Pittsburgh, Pa 15216, USA   USA
1974 MG MGB "Bee"
What exactly are you asking for?
I read your post and agree a FAQ with links would be great, and I 'd be glad to participate. As I read your post, I didnt understand what you meant by "
If someone wants to write "" .

RSVP
Scot


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What he means is if you wish to contribute to the sticky then you are welcome to write something to appear in the sticky.
I will be sending Skye some of my ideas on what should appear in the sticky.

I have noticed that there have been multiple threads started that ask the same question over and over. What we need here is a basic info as to what options are available to a potential engine swapper. I don't believe that the sticky should discuss costs because individual talents and expertise vary and what works for one will not work for others.

I feel we need:

A list of engine/transmission combinations.
Carb .v. EFI with a simple pro/con
Some reference to various rear end and gearing options.
Uprating brakes and suspension.
Other misc. items like seats, instruments etc etc.

If this site allows, a list of links to the experts and suppliers who are known to assist MG owners in carrying out conversions.

My 2 cents worth.




I defy you to ban me.

1744 Avatar
1744 Gold Member Bill Guzman
CA, USA   USA
1973 MG MGB GT "Renegade I GT"
1974 MG MGB "Renegade"
Michael, that waas more than two cents worth, that is brilliant.
If I can help in any way count me in.

Now, just one suggestion, I think it should be kept simple and to the point.
Also, due to the nature of the "Sticky" I think we should include the spread sheet without any cost to assist the owner with their new swap.

What ever is needed, I will be glad to help.


Member Services:
MG Classic Conversions V6. Wilwood brake dealer.
Here is my draft of the engine/transmission section. There are lots of gaps, please feel free to cut and paste and then re-post, add information as required. Remember keep it simple as this is intended as a guide for raw beginners.
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------

UPGRADING A MGB.

Engine options:

Buick Special/Olds F85/Rover 215 CI Aluminum V8
(Note: Chrome bumper model requires bodywork modifications)
Transmissions:
GM T5
Auto boxes ????
Stock MGB transmission with adapter plate Also requires machining of the flywheel, a MGC clutch assy. and a crankshaft adapter.

Chevrolet S10/Camero 2.8/3.1/3.4 60 degree V6
(Note: FWD transverse models of this engine can be used with modifications)
Transmissions:
GM T5
Auto boxes ????

Check to see if you can use the stock clutch slave cylinder or a HTOB
(Hydraulic Throw Out Bearing)

Ford engines ?????

Transmissions:
?????



Links:

Engine mnts, headers, ignition for GM V6 http://www.classicconversionseng.com/

Transmissions, flywheels, driveshafts etc. http://bmcautos.com/

Buick/Olds/Rover parts http://www.aluminumv8.com/index.htm

Ford ??????






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1744 Avatar
1744 Gold Member Bill Guzman
CA, USA   USA
1973 MG MGB GT "Renegade I GT"
1974 MG MGB "Renegade"
OK ! I will write one on transmissions and final gear ratios.

Can a spread sheet be posted in this Forum? I guess it can, I guess the question do I send it to the web master?


Member Services:
MG Classic Conversions V6. Wilwood brake dealer.
scotabbott Avatar
scotabbott Scot Abbott
Pittsburgh, Pa 15216, USA   USA
1974 MG MGB "Bee"
I recently put together a complete introduction to EFI and retrofitting it to B's. It's in powerpoint at the moment. Where do I submit it?

Bill Young Avatar
Kansas City, MO, USA   USA
1952 MG TD
1959 MG MGA 1500
1973 Lotus Europa
1973 MG Midget "Half Asp Or Frank"    & more
Skye, is this along the lines of what you had in mind?


What To Consider When Selecting An Engine For A Swap


When trying to determine if a given engine is a good potential candidate for a swap into any given car there are several area of concern to consider.

These are:
1. Is the weight compatible with the chassis and suspension?
2. Will the engine physically fit into the existing engine compartment?
3. Are the engine management controls within my realm of expertise?
4. If not then are earlier components available for that engine to convert it to carburetion and standard ignition components?

1. If the weight of the total engine package is within 100 to 150 pounds over the weight of the original engine then you can probably find springs that will accept that extra load and the shocks should be still within their range of operation to control the extra weight. For more weight consider that you will probably need special suspension components as well as increased braking ability. If the package is lighter than the original components then you may have to source lighter springs or modify the coils by lowering their height to maintain adequate ride height.

2. Finding out if the engine will fit the compartment with minimal modifications is fairly easy, just take 4 critical measurements and you will know right away. These are as shown in the diagram,
A. Engine height from crankshaft centerline to top of the induction system.
B. Diameter of the bell housing.
C. Width of the engine from exhaust manifold to exhaust manifold.
D. Length of block from bell housing flange to front of the crank pulley.



Compare these measurements to the available room in the engine bay and you will know right away if any major modifications will be necessary.

3. For a modern engine it will probably have some sort of computer controlled ignition and fuel injection system. You will have to know how to reprogram the original system or at least satisfy the input requirements for things like a vehicle speed sensor, oxygen sensor, and others to get the engine to run well. Aftermarket systems are available, but they will require some programming skills in order to develop a program that is compatible with your car.

4. If the computer controls are a problem then are earlier components available for that engine? In the case of the Rover/Buick V8, the Ford V8, and the GM V6, which are three of the most popular swaps into British cars, the answer is yes. You can go with a carburetor and conventional distributor system if you want. For some other engines such as later designs then that becomes a problem. Some later designs don’t even have mountings for a distributor, using a crank triggered controlled ignition system, so even if you can convert the intake system to carbs the ignition will still require some computer expertise.


Selecting an engine that meets these requirements is the first step towards a successful engine swap with a minimum of hassle and engineering problems. Of course anything can be made to fit, but for the average guy with limited resources staying within these guidelines will go a long way towards seeing your project completed in a timely manner and close to your budget.
Beware of the “free engine” syndrome; that is forcing a swap because the engine was free or came at a very good price. If it’s not a good fit then it’s usually cheaper to sell that engine and start with a better candidate than to force the issue. The compromises that can come in terms of foot room, passenger and driver comfort, overall vehicle balance, and cost can change a dream car into a nightmare.


Bill Young




Bill Young
'73 Midget
'59 MGA

There is a fine line between a 'hobby' and 'mental illness'.


Attachments:
engine dimensions.JPG    15.4 KB
engine dimensions.JPG

scotabbott Avatar
scotabbott Scot Abbott
Pittsburgh, Pa 15216, USA   USA
1974 MG MGB "Bee"
Some additional things to consider when choosing drivetrain:

How much power do I want?
Horsepower and torque define the acceleration capabilities of the car. It is strictly a game of horsepower vs car weight. Try out some cars with various power to weight ratios and find out how much 'pop' you want. Then you can calculate the power you want for your car,

Is this a daily driver or a weekend toy?

Luisma55 Avatar
Luisma55 Luis Velasco
Peru, IN, USA   USA
I want to use a 3.1 or a 3.4 in my conversion. Want it carburated, how I do that. Thanks

Bill Young Avatar
Kansas City, MO, USA   USA
1952 MG TD
1959 MG MGA 1500
1973 Lotus Europa
1973 MG Midget "Half Asp Or Frank"    & more
Luis, first you need a 3.1 or 3.4 with the iron heads. I'm not aware of any intake that will take a carb made for the aluminum head engines. Your best choice for a block would be from a RWD vehicle such as a S10 or Camaro, the FWD blocks don't have bosses for the side motor mounts cast in and therefore need special front covers which incorporate mounts. These are available from British Car Conversions http://www.britishcarconversions.com/component/virtuemart/?page=shop.browse&category=&vmcchk=1 if you want to go that way, but they are really designed for the complete FWD engine package including the EFI. I'd stick to a RWD block. For an intake you can use either a special Edlebrock intake, the stock two barrel intake from an early 2.8 S10 or the lower base section from a 2.8 MPFI with a carb adaptor from Classic Conversion Engineering. All have provisions for a distributor in the rear. The S10 or very early FWD cars used conventional ignition systems with vacuum and mechanical advance. Those are listed by application as the LE2, LH7, or LC1 and LR2 from the RWD vehicles. This information comes from the Wikipedia article on the GM 60 degree V6 engine at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/GM_60-Degree_V6_engine which is a good reference.




Bill Young
'73 Midget
'59 MGA

There is a fine line between a 'hobby' and 'mental illness'.

Bill Young Avatar
Kansas City, MO, USA   USA
1952 MG TD
1959 MG MGA 1500
1973 Lotus Europa
1973 MG Midget "Half Asp Or Frank"    & more
Guys, I think my last post although in answer to Luis' queston not the format Mike was looking for on this forum. We need to take our routine questions out to the other board and make this a place where someone can search the headings and find an answer to their question rather than post it if it's already covered. It can be edited easily enough to fall under a heading of "Carburation for GM V6 engines?" The idea being that someone in the future such as Luis could search this board and find the answer he needs easily without having to search through years of posts on the regular forum.

I should have written the first sentence along these lines.
"To use carburation on the GM 60 degree V6 engines you will need to utilize the iron heads .....etc. " That makes is a resonable statement for a FAQ forum.





Bill Young
'73 Midget
'59 MGA

There is a fine line between a 'hobby' and 'mental illness'.

Yes I agree, Luis's question should have been asked elsewhere, we only want the answers to the generally asked questions in the FAQ.

I see that many threads in the forum degenerate and get away from the basic topic.
The idea of the FAQ thread is a place for "Newbies" to look in first to get answers to their initial questions, then the forums can be used to discuss more detailed questions.

SKYE.....Please Edit your first post in the FAQ and Indicate that users should not ask questions in the FAQ thread. The FAQ is a place for the "Experts" and "Experienced" members to post answers to commonly asked questions.

PS

Definition of an "Expert".......Ex is a has-been and a "Spurt" is a drip under pressure.





I defy you to ban me.

Luisma55 Avatar
Luisma55 Luis Velasco
Peru, IN, USA   USA
I will not boder you any more

Luis,
you did not bother anyone, we welcome your questions at any time.
What we are attempting to do is make up a selection of ready made answers to the common questions that are asked.
Please feel free to ask you your questions in the general forum and avoid the "Sticky"
Mike



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