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1953 322


50ChevyFrank
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Is there any reason to avoid a first year V8?  If buying for a hot rod or custom.  Were improvements or changes made in 54 or later that make a 53 less desirable?

Hypothetical question really, as I’m reconsidering my A D Chevy Truck repower.  The Buick “Nailhead” was designed narrow to fit the 53 frame which was initially designed for an inline engine.  Same thing with the pre-55 Chevy trucks.  Putting most V8s including a SBC in a A D truck requires doing something about the steering box. 

Thanks. 

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If that is an open drive shaft in that truck I believe you'll find a 61 or later 401 v8 to be a much better alternative. 

53 v8s likely turned a dynaflow.  Converting to more modern trans adds to the re- engineering. Not impossible but just extra work.  Otherwise, for 322's only there were changes from 53-54-55 and some bigger changes for 56. As I understand it among the 4 of them, earlier motors wound up using some 56 parts when others were phased out. 

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Torque tube but with a stick shift probably. I am not sure but I believe crankshafts in Buick nailheads with Dynaflows are not drilled for pilot shat bushings.  Another step to climb.

 

Do you have a 53 engine available already? 

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8 hours ago, 50ChevyFrank said:

Before 1955 all Chevy 1/2-ton trucks had torque tube drive.   I don’t know if any part of a Buick torque tube is compatible with a Chevy torque tube.   Probably not.  😞

 

Not compatible.

 

I have at least entertained the thought of combining the two to get more interesting gear ratios. The Chevrolet torque tube acts as a torque arm, holding against engine torque and braking torque. The Buick torque tube does that, but also locates the axle front to rear. The stuff at the back of the transmission where the u-joint lives is completely different, because the Buick must take fore/aft loads. Just looking at pictures of Buick and Chevrolet transmissions online will show you the difference.

 

There have been more that one Chevrolet axle design, and more than one Buick axle design over the years for use with torque tubes. The Buick ones are always different than Chevrolet, and generally bigger. Also, some on some (but not all) Buicks you can remove the torque tube from the differential carrier. On Chevrolet, the torque tube is permanently attached to the carrier.

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  • 8 months later...

Revisiting this old thread.  Nothing has happened relative to this “project” though much has happened in life.  Including my wife’s retirement and selling out and moving from IL to Eastern TN.  Renting a too-small place now with no extra space for another vehicle, or anything else.  

Moving from the Illini Prairie where the roads are laid out in a grid, to the edge of the Smoky Mountains where a straight or level road can’t be found, requires an adjustment.  😎

Someday...

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1 hour ago, 50ChevyFrank said:

Revisiting this old thread.  Nothing has happened relative to this “project” though much has happened in life.  Including my wife’s retirement and selling out and moving from IL to Eastern TN.  Renting a too-small place now with no extra space for another vehicle, or anything else.  

Moving from the Illini Prairie where the roads are laid out in a grid, to the edge of the Smoky Mountains where a straight or level road can’t be found, requires an adjustment.  😎

Someday...

 

TN is a beautiful state.  Even more beautiful around the Smokies.  There is plenty of flat road to  be found there.  Plenty of hills as well! 

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