Big block swapping a 1964 barracuda

Early A-Body Discussions

  1. Natef64cuda

    Natef64cuda Member

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    I have a 1964 Plymouth barracuda and I’m currently swapping a 383 big block into it. I have the engine all ready and I will be getting the conversion motor mounts this Friday. I’m going with a 727 and a 8 3/4 rear end and I believe I can fit a 10 inch slick on the back without cutting anything up. I still have yet to figure out rear end gears but I’d like to do 1/4 mile drag racing and have it not completely unable to drive down the road. It’s probably going to be a while till it’s up and going because being 17 with a gas guzzling 5.2 magnum doesn’t help my financial situation at all but not having to pay bills kinda helps as well. If anyone that’s done a big block swap would like to give me some tips and help I’m all ears

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    • RustyRatRod

      RustyRatRod I was born on a Monday. Not last Monday. FABO Gold Member

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      The low deck is the easier of the two. What do you plan for exhaust? Nobody makes anything. B body and C body HP manifolds can fit pretty easily.
       
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      • Natef64cuda

        Natef64cuda Member

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        I had no idea, I was going to see how some block huggers would fit and if I couldn’t find anything I would either try a log manifold style or just stock manifolds until I can afford some really nice custom set that flows super well
         
      • RustyRatRod

        RustyRatRod I was born on a Monday. Not last Monday. FABO Gold Member

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        Oh and you'll wanna lose that power steering. lol
         
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        • RustyRatRod

          RustyRatRod I was born on a Monday. Not last Monday. FABO Gold Member

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          They won't fit. LOL It's custom all the way for headers.
           
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          • Natef64cuda

            Natef64cuda Member

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            Yea Im gonna pull that off tomorrow and start looking for the car manual steering box since it’s the smallest
             
          • RustyRatRod

            RustyRatRod I was born on a Monday. Not last Monday. FABO Gold Member

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            They aren't hard to find. Put you up an ad in the wanted section. Somebody will have one.
             
          • Natef64cuda

            Natef64cuda Member

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            I’m just over an hour drive from a place called mopar city so I was gonna call tomorrow and see pricing for a manual steering box and the rest of the drivetrain I need, and how big of a tube for the primary tubes? From what the guy I bought the motor said it’s a freshly rebuilt 383 with a unknown spec purple cam
             
          • RustyRatRod

            RustyRatRod I was born on a Monday. Not last Monday. FABO Gold Member

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            I'd go as big as will humanly fit in the thing.
             
          • Natef64cuda

            Natef64cuda Member

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            Also I’m going to either have it dump right behind the front tires on each side or right in front of the rear tires, I like it to be real loud
             
          • Ricks70Duster340

            Ricks70Duster340 Child of the King FABO Gold Member

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            Years ago, I put a 440 into my '68 Valiant and had fenderwell headers. I learned a lot from that project, and it was loud. Did I say it was loud?! The joy of being really loud will wear off quickly as your brain rattles, so plan on what it will take to get nice mellow mufflers with the exhaust fully out the back. You will still have a nice throaty tone without being raspy. Have fun!
             
          • JDMopar

            JDMopar Well-Known Member

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            @abodyjoe used to have a 64-65 Valiant he put a big block in. I'm sure he can give you some tips when he sees this. Have fun with the build!

            :thumbsup:
             
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            • abodyjoe

              abodyjoe Well-Known Member

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              nice.. should be a fun ride.. yea i know you can build big cube small blocks and all but there is nothing like a big block abody...

              i did A 440 in a 64 valiant many years ago.. all the oldheads said it would fit.. screw them, they were wrong.. had to build my own mounts back then as no one was making them.. pretty easy swap using the stock k-frame and all..

              like already stated the exhaust is the hardest.. i had custom headers made since no one even to this day make a header that fits an early abody with a bog block.. to me there is no use in putting a big block in there if using manifolds. waste of time for me...

              make sure you have the V-8 center link.

              i raised the motor a hair instead of notching the k-frame for oil pump clearance..

              i always thought the big block was easier to work on then the 360 i had in the car originally.

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              • Ricks70Duster340

                Ricks70Duster340 Child of the King FABO Gold Member

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                There are so many things I like about the BB engines over the SB's. Distributor in front is a big plus. Oil filter right in front. Water pump is much easier to replace. No need to drain water to change intake. By the way, I seriously considered canceling my BPE small block stroker order (because there is no ETA on out of stock parts) and building a stroker 383. Found SCAT also had their kits backordered until at least late October. Ugh. I have time and no parts. Maybe there is a song in the making about this!
                 
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                • Natef64cuda

                  Natef64cuda Member

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                  That’s super nice, I’d love to eventually get a 440 for it but I got a great deal on a fresh 383. Did you use a electric fan or a belt driven one and should I reuse the original radiator I have or get a bigger one And make it fit?
                   
                • Natef64cuda

                  Natef64cuda Member

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                  I’m using my last day of summer before my senior year of highschool to work on my barracuda. So far I’ve test fit the motor and I’ve found I need to get a rear sump oil pan to clear the k member and I took the seats and carpet out to inspect for rust since the cars been in Illinois for atleast 35 years and I’ve found lots of rust on the driver side and only surface rust on the passenger side. While I was waiting for paint to dry I decided to take all the the under dash stuff out because I don’t plan on ever driving it in the winter so no need for a heater. I have a decent sized sheet of aluminum I’m gonna use to make block off plates to fill the holes in the fire wall from the where the heater core and the lines for it came in

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                • Dartswinger70

                  Dartswinger70 Only thing I ever bought new was a Fender Strat

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                  Dont ya have to cut the firewall corners for headers?
                   
                • Natef64cuda

                  Natef64cuda Member

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                  i think, once I get the Engine sitting in there on the mounts and it’s not resting on anything I’ll start measuring for headers. My other idea was to have a single turbo and run about 4lb of boost and have the driver side cross in front and have the exhaust exit above the roof of the car. If you know cleetus McFarlands single turbo c6 corvette i used that car as a example
                   
                • Dartswinger70

                  Dartswinger70 Only thing I ever bought new was a Fender Strat

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                  Good luck I hear the early A bodies ae challenging fitting things on em like exhaust etc. Not as forgiving as the 67 later body. Not saying it cant be done but there is a certain way to do it .
                   
                • Natef64cuda

                  Natef64cuda Member

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                  Yea it was a pain pulling manifolds off on the 318 small block it had so headers on a big block would be a nightmare. But with a single turbo out of the hood I just need super short ones and then it’s less of a headache with exhaust
                   
                • AJ/FormS

                  AJ/FormS 68 B'cuda fb, Form S clone ... 367/A833/3.55s

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                  About 1976
                  I was offered a free 1964 Barracuda (mint body and triple-black), that a guy had installed a 383 into. The log manifolds were still on it, and they were dumping right onto the steering-column down-rod....... which is why the car was free; the guy was sick and tired of throwing money at it.
                  I was 23 years old and dumb as a sack of hammers as proven by the fact that I passed on that deal. Man if I only had that car today; what a great home it would be for my HO 367.
                   
                • Rapid Robert

                  Rapid Robert Well-Known Member

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                  you'll want to scallop the trans crossmember on the one side like the other side is so that it now has a recess on both sides so your ex doesn't hang down low
                   
                • pishta

                  pishta I know I'm right....

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                  Pro-parts headers...fit with minor mods. Will fit 440 better to get 'em over the steering linkage.
                   
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