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65 Riviera engine swap


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FOR GOD'S SAKE!! if you don't have the mechanical ability to make the 401 run, sell the car to someone who can!!!!! <P>If you still want to swap in that 454, which doesn't have the the power the 401 has by the way. Intead you can save some money by just getting a gallon of gas and pouring it on the car and burning it to the ground! It will be a much cheaper way to RUIN that fine car. <P>I'm REALLY gonna BLOW!!!! mad.gifmad.gifmad.gif <P>------------------<BR>buickfam@aol.com<BR>Life long Buick Fan.<BR>1965 Skylark H/T<BR>1965 Gran Sport Convertible<BR>1948 Chevy Pickup with 401 Buick.<BR>"Fan of most anything that moves human beings"

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MARTINSR, mmm... three growley red faces, eh? Check that blood pressure. I feel your pain, though.<BR>Daven, look for another 401 or a 425 from 64-66. You can not go wrong with one of those -no modifications or headaches if you just want a cool car to hop into and drive. It is also a far better engine to look at and work on than a 454. The 454 boatanchor is one of the most overrated engines in history. Do as you wish, but a nailhead is your best choice, save the 454 for a flower planter. Matt

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Guest John Chapman

Daven,<P>As you have probably seen, Chivvy motors into Buicks is a contentious topic on this site. And for good reason. Buick motors are in general a superior product and bastardizing a nice Buick with another brand motor costs a lot in terms of aesthetics, resale value and parts/time to do the swap. I'd say the swap would decrease the resale value of your Rivi by at least 50%, given a well-done installation.<P>Now for the reality of your situation. If'n your hammer's big enough and pockets deep enough, anything will fit... but...<P>The transmission doesn't have the Chivvy bolt pattern. Adaptors are available, but there are likely other clearance, mount and fit problems to contend with. You'd most likely be happier in the long run with a rebuild of the current 401 or finding a sound replacement for rebuild/installation. I've not priced a BBC crate motor, but it's what four grand or so? Man, for half that money you could have a rebuilt, balanced, blueprinted trick screaming 401 with as much HP and torque.<P>Just my peso's worth.<P>JMC<P>------------------<BR>John Chapman<BR>BCA 35894<BR>1965 Skylark Convertible (Some Assembly Required)<BR> jmchapman@aol.com

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I think, most of hear will agree with this. The engine of your car is a part of your car. Replacing a Buick engine with a Chevy, leaves you with half a Buick. It's sort of like taking the front half of a Impala and mating it with the back half of an Electra. You ruin the car, even if it isn't a GS. Other Buicks are worth money too. If you want a car just to drive around, cause it looks cool, and it's old. Then I'd suggest getting a Chevy. Then the 454 would just be updating it. If you want a Buick then keep the whole car Buick. There's enough people cutting up these old cars, and we aren't getting any more.<P><P>------------------<BR>-Keith<P>'87 Lesabre T-type<P>'86 Regal w/350 (still in progress)<P><A HREF="http://members.nbci.com/lesabrettype/index.html" TARGET=_blank>The Lesabre T-type Page</A>

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If your looking to save money and aren't interested in keeping the car original, I would go with the Tech-4. I hear they're great on gas!!!

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Daven, In the long run your best bet would be having the 401 rebuilt. The only easy part of a 454 Chev conversion would be using a chevy short tail turbo hydromatic 400 transmission which would be a direct boltin place of the Buick's TH 400. Beyond that point you are sailing uncharted waters. It is a conversion that just doesn't make logical sense. The Riviera frame system-engine compartment doesn't lend it's self to that kind of conversion. From the questions you ask you sound like a novice and if you are a novice to this you'll have many bumps in the road to create this. 401 Buickswith a fresh rebuild are great engines. Sometimes It's hard enough to restore a car with out trying to over come problems of adapting different componets. This Monday I will take a closer look (I've a junk '65 Riviera without an engine and I have a junk 454 Chev engine on the ground and I'll eyeball the package) Henry

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WELL GEEZ...<P>Sorry to get everybody flaming!<P>I haven't...repeat HAVE NOT...even bought the friggin car, and the swap was just an idea. <P>So please accept my apologies. I'll take everyone's word on the nailhead being better to work with (I am aware that a 425 Nailhead weighs less than its equal-displacement brethren.)<P>And if you're still fuming, then maybe I shouldn't tell you about my GNX that I painted orange... wink.gif

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Hi, I recently found a 65 Riviera that is mechanically and aesthecially excellent except for the 401 Nailhead, which requires a rebuild or replacement.<P>What I would like to consider is installing a crate 454 from GM -- just drop it in and never modify it again. Keeping the car all original internally isn't a priority since it isn't a GS, and this car would only be for fun (no car shows).<P>So my question is would the engine bolt in (do nailheads have different bolt patterns)?<P>Would there be any concerns about the engine not fitting in there (somehow I remember hearing about the alternator location being different on Buicks than Chevys -is this a problem)?<P>If there would be any fabrication/custom work required, how difficult would it be?

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Thanks for being such a good sport Daven. I am a big fan of engine swaps but there has to be a benefit. Swapping a 401 or 425 for a 454 makes no sense. The 454 makes a great amount of HP and Torque when modified but in stock form (outside of the high horse trick big dollar GM motors) there is no comparision with a nailhead. My '65 Gran Sport runs 13.80s in the 1/4 and my Brothers 425 '64 Riv would beat it across an intersection, they REALLY run well and are great road cars. <P>And by the way, out side of a Jaguar XJ6, swapping to save money NEVER works. If you look at all the little things and the devalue of the car.....you loose BIG time.<P>As for painting the GNX orange...sounds cool to me! How many black cars can you look at anyway, and it can be changed back in a week end. Besides it doesn't effect the "soul" of the car (well the GN and GNX owners may argue that point, come on guys lighten up). smile.gif<P>------------------<BR>buickfam@aol.com<BR>Life long Buick Fan.<BR>1965 Skylark H/T<BR>1965 Gran Sport Convertible<BR>1948 Chevy Pickup with 401 Buick.<BR>"Fan of most anything that moves human beings"

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