New Generation Slant six enthusiasts

Discussion in 'Slant 6 Engines' started by Rainy Day Auto, Jun 14, 2018.

  1. Rainy Day Auto

    Rainy Day Auto Lady and the Scamp FABO Gold Member

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    In doing a lot of research on slant sixes, it seems to me that the most enthusiasm happened in the mid 80s.

    It was then, big names like Doug Dutra and Clifford were heavy in the business of making cool stuff for the hungry slant crowd.

    The 90s came and went and the 2000s is when I personally used to find a lot of slant sixes around but not a lot of enthusiasm. It was during those times I remember sitting at a scrap yard to make buddies with the guys there and they would call me when a slant or something mopar would come across the scales so I could save it......that almost never happens anymore.

    Now 2020 is rapidly approaching and it seems like the slant six enthusiasm is near gone. Clifford doesn't even list a fraction of the cool things available in the past and even slant six rebuild parts are just not around anymore.

    Being born in the mid 80s I wish I had a better shot at hoarding more slant sixes like some did who were of age in the 80s. I wonder what the future is for an engine that you rarely see in pick a part lots or scrap yards anymore.

    Will the mid 80s ever repeat and have some new big names rise and the enthusiasm go up again for a nearly 60 year old engine that people don't often appreciate?

    even still, I absolutely refuse to V8 swap my valiant :)

    just a thought
     
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    • Abodybomber

      Abodybomber Breaking street machines , since 1983.....:)

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      The slant silly six ,is a great engine. Just remember, it's a torque beast.
      Remember: the engine was never a favorite, and product was discontinued , almost 25-30 years ,ago .
      Are you discussing to find new aftermarket information, or just members to learn from ?
       
    • 65 Dartman

      65 Dartman FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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      Seems like some of the Aussie companies are still into slants with various products and acquiring others (like the Dutra exhaust manifold).

      I kind of doubt the enthusiasm will ever be as strong as it was years ago. It was like when people grew up with the Model T then A then 40’s then 50’s cars. As people got older the older stuff just basically faded away as younger people gravitated towards cars and engines they were familiar with. It’s the same with the slant. The only real enthusiasm comes from enthusiasts like found on slant6.org and to a lesser extent here. My 2c.
       
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      • 73 dart custom

        73 dart custom FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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        Every day I have someone comment on mine... yesterday a gentleman at a gas station asked the guy behind me if the car was his, commented what nice shape it was in, how they had /6 motors in them that you couldn't kill... then started guessing what year it was... At which point I informed him it was a 73 and headed out the door. He came out behind me and informed me my car was worth a LOT of money lol. I didn't have the heart to tell him I only gave $1,000 for it.

        I have people ask how much I want for it every day and if I will sell it. A lot of them tell me that they had one like it or a similar one when they were younger. And all say what a wonderful motor the /6 is/was. I purchased the car as a daily driver because of the slant 6 engine in it. I used to have a little Valiant with a /6 back in the early 80s also. Paid $500 for it and found 2 $100 bills under the carpet in that little valiant lol.

        I don't believe mine is worth as much as people around my area seem to think it is... but I am glad they appreciate it. It does surprise me the amount of interest it generates. I thought when I bought it that no one would pay much attention to it as it is pretty much all original, not modified, repainted or anything really done to it at all that I can tell... even had the original plug wires lol. It had set for a couple years with no one wanting to pay what the guy was asking for it before I found it right after he lowered the price. I was lucky in that he agreed to let me have it first!!

        Anyway... I guess what I feel from my experiences with this one, is that there is enthusiasm, just not with the customizing crowd that wants the power and speed. The enthusiasm is from the everyday guy on the street that remembers the quality of the engine!
         
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        • Darter6

          Darter6 FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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          Rainy, Sorry to say you are right. Like anything hobby wise it will have peaks and valleys.Slants were never that popular as far as Hobbiest go.
          Less than 10 years ago we would have as many as 19 cars show for the MATS race in Vegas.This year 2018, 2 cars showed and 1 left early on the second day.
          I raced for years with my Slant Dart.Sold it after 20+ years,built another but sold it after 1 year (dumb mistake on my part but that's another story). Like always times change, life, family wise changes too. I have plans to do another Slant streeter or maybe a drag only but that has been at least 5 years passing now since I started the project.For me it's a money issue.Play money just isn't there and to do something I have to sell something.I sold my 68 Valiant (273 V8) several months ago,was hoping to use that money on the project but it all went to things for the house and home.I will say I have been gathering parts along the way and maybe be able to get back to it this fall..Maybe.
          I will ever remain a Slant fan.I have even considered pulling the HEMI out of my 65 Belvedere and making it a Slant car again that's how much I like them.
          Can't really say if the younger generation will want to(or ever) be involved with Slants. Just recent we were talking about guys in the 60's that were in to the 40 something year old cars from the 30's. I will tell being a teen of the 60's I would have never even looked at a street rod, flathead, bullcrap car back then.
          One more thing that I will address is the east coast guys are in to them more. They have a race coming up in Kentucky this September and looks like the have over 60 cars pre-entered.
          Done with my rant.
           
        • Darter6

          Darter6 FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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          Did I say I love 'um ? All Slants and I miss every one of them.

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          • KosmicKuda

            KosmicKuda Well-Known Member

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            My dad had 4 slant sixes when I was growing up. A used 61 2 door hardtop Valiant 170/auto. A new 63 Dodge 330 225/3 speed manual. A used 67 Valiant 2 door sedan auto but don't remember engine size. Then a 73 Swinger auto. Somehow I convinced him to go for the V8 (318 LA) in the new 67 Dodge Coronet 440 and I even picked the color. The 63, 67 and 73 were my mom's everyday cars. I remember my dad saying if the 61 had the 225 out of the 63 in it that it would be fun.

            So I had to experience the slant for myself. Hence the 64 Val V200 convertible. (I have a complete 340 4 speed drivetrain, radiator to 8-3/4 rearend in the garage and its staying there for now)
            Rebuilt 225 and 3 on the tree. The top went down 3-4 wks ago and it's stayed down! Best part is driving it several times a week. I don't have Historical plates on it because you're not supposed to drive those every day and I knew this was to be a driver. I'm kinda shy and don't pursue attention but sitting at lights with the top down, I get looked down upon by people in their SUVs and crossovers. (Because they're higher) Funny how many times people just start a conversation like talking over the backyard fence. Most come from middle aged or older guys who actually know what it is. Questions are usually what year is that? Does that have the push button shift? Is it a slant six? I didn't know they made a Valiant convertible.

            The main purpose of this car is to have fun and it does a good job doing that.

            My oldest son, Mopar Gearhead, born in 1983 gets it. The picture is of his son, my grandson, standing on the front seat and he gets it.

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            • 66fs

              66fs Well-Known Member

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              Like most Mopar engines, They did everything well. The best thing to do is cam them, double roller timing chain, mill the head, and cc the chambers, OEM factory 2 barrel carb and intake, electronic distributor, 2 1/4 exhaust. They will beat most anything near their size and live forever. 170 for high RPM and 198 or 225 for torque. What more do you want? As for aftermarket, you have to support them, lesser engines need constant upkeep and replacing, so there is a ready supply of parts for them.
               
              Last edited: Jun 15, 2018
            • halfafish

              halfafish 66 Valiant, hot-rod in training FABO Gold Member

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              I agree with all the previous posts. Appreciating the slant is a niche in the automotive (and even Mopar) world, but like the engines themselves that appreciation just keeps chugging along. I had my first slant in a 73 Duster, back in the late 70's. When that one got away from me there was a long drought, but upon retiring and looking for a fun project car I knew it would be a 66 Valiant. When I found one with a slant and 3-on-the-tree in unmolested condition I snapped it up immediately. A year later I rescued an 82 D-150 that spun a timing chain and was headed for the crusher, mostly because it had a slant and A833OD. I can't explain why I like them, I just do. Performance-wise, I know I will never make one into a street terror, but I don't care. Every time I pop the hood and look inside I smile.

              When out for a spin in the 66, I find young folks fascinated by the car and engine. I've had numerous conversations educating these kids on what I'm driving, and why.

              I've not had any issues with lack of parts or support, but I do have to look around to find what I want. FABO and slantsix.org are invaluable for staying in the loop for parts. I've found some very nice stuff and sold nice stuff through these forums. The slant world is very supportive of fellow believers.

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              • Slantsix64

                Slantsix64 Well-Known Member

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                Slant six working mans engine, humble, low maintenance, always ready to run on all six cylinders or two. My first car was a 72 valiant with a slant six bought it 10 years ago cause my skateboard just wasn't cutting it. $850 Never opened the hood never needed too. When I brought it home my mom yelled at me and said that it's going break down in a week. She went through three cars and the valiant is still running. My best friend owns it now, when he passes by my parents know that it's the Blue Bandit because of that slant six tone!
                 
              • barbee6043

                barbee6043 barbee 6043

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                The slant drags back in Ky have been going on quite a while and that is g lot of interest and turnout. Great. I believe everything runs in cycles pretty much. Comes and goes. The Aussies acquired Dutra exhaust and the people there seem pretty active. Shipping gets costly for the US as does shipping anything from US to poor Canada.!!!! Clifford has never had the best rep I will say. Not everyone loves him. I personally have never bought anything there.
                They made a zillion slants and for the most part, people still give them away so they can replace it with a V8.

                Time marches on. Wasn't that many years back that new factory muscle was dead! Look at it today. I simply try choose cars that I enjoy and careless what others think of my stuff. If somewhere along, someone thinks I am a worthwhile person, great.
                 
              • sireland67

                sireland67 Well-Known Member

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                I have had alot of slants over the years, I do not have any now, but I do have a good carb for one, because I know one day, I will find another, and it will need no more than a simple tune up to get it running, and good carbs are hard to find.
                I think this old truck was my favorite, drove it as a daily driver for years, but it lost a battle with black ice.
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                • Deemo

                  Deemo Well-Known Member

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                  Mine sat for 32 years alone. New plugs, battery juice and some fuel and she fired up in under a minute. Have a 360 bored out out in the garage.... but damn. The 170 slant in my valiant has been like a timex watch. Takes a beating and still goes. Why change it out? Well. Now that I’ve driven it daily for almost two years.... I think my slant will stay right where she is. In my daily 65 valiant. Still barking 2nd gear. Guy in a Demon flagged me down and his first words..... got that slant in there? Why yes.....

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                  • barbee6043

                    barbee6043 barbee 6043

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                    I see some simarlarities between the slant crowd and the wide block poly engine people... The poly has always had potential for more power than it came with factory and the CPPA people had the $ and resources to improve upon it..... The slant has always been limited hp wise, but also has a rabid following, Mr. Dutra did a lot for the slant hobby and his wok has been passed on ( to another continent). I see the slant being what it is, an engine with extreme reliability, a unique factor, limited potential due to head, but an engine that can be made to have way more power if someone wants to spend the $ on it on way or another.
                    I see most people simple use it as intended, an long life economical engine, and when people spend $$ it many times goes the easier route, v8 power.

                    I think Rani's question was, is the interest in slants waning?? She might well be right, but I also remember back a few decades ago when hardly anyone wanted a slant, it had to be a high hp model!! Just look at all the interest in the modest A body models today. How many of these grocery getter grandma models have been saved, some kept original, other receiving transplants!
                    Time marches on. Fast forward 20 years, lot of people will be looking for a good restorable 2008 Challenger!???? It will be a "classic" by then ?? And the people today that relate to the slant and our beloved A body will be fewer in number. Not gone, but maybe fewer!????
                    My take on life. We really do not own anything, our Creator simply allows us to enjoy things while on this Earth, be it old cars, land, money, whatever......
                     
                  • BillGrissom

                    BillGrissom Well-Known Member

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                    A company recently prototyped an MPFI manifold for a slant. Haven't heard of production plans or price. The AMC straight six (4.0L) probably has a more loyal following, since the low-end torque works great in a Jeep. I think it goes back even earlier (early 1950's?) and stayed into the fuel injection days, so easier to modernize an old engine. But, seems every old guy heard of the slant six as "most reliable ever", whether they had one or not. Don't show them photos of the ones that threw a rod thru the side of the block, usually cyl 5 for some reason.
                     
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                    • CichliDart

                      CichliDart Well, where is it now?

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                      As another pointed out, the Australian crowd seems to be producing a lot of new parts for the slants.
                      Given the design you can make or modify a lot of things yourself. Pishta and many others have done some amazing modifications that I am envious of. Adding a turbo now a days seems much easier than in the past due to the availability of small inexpensive turbo's that fit this size engine. TorqStorm now has a bolt on supercharger which if available twenty years ago I may have bought one of those as opposed to pulling a slant out for a v8 in one of my cars. Go over to Pinterest and type in slant six and you will find hundreds of pictures of custom slant sixes.
                       
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                      • RussellSullivan

                        RussellSullivan New Member

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                        I've had four Mopars and three have had the slant six. When I was 15 I bought my first car, a 74 Dart Custom. Then a 75 Valiant. Next was a 63 Imperial with a 413 push button. Now I'm 22 and I have an 80 Diplomat coupe with a slant. No lean burn. I am, however, building a 360/A500/8.75 combo for it with manual brakes and steering. When that's done, I'll be rebuilding the slant and A999 tranny. I'm going to see just how much power I can squeeze out of the slant without ruining the daily drivability. I was thinking a small turbo, and maybe a four speed instead of automatic. Anyway, long story short, I'm a young kid who plans on carrying the love of Mopars with me the rest of my life. Slants, small blocks and big blocks alike. No car too big or too small, or too old. Not too many newer ones I'd want.
                         
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                        • Charrlie_S

                          Charrlie_S Well-Known Member

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                          If you notice, most of the slanters on this site and dot org, are "older" folks. The younger generation just doesn't get it. For every three of the oldsters that are no longer slanters (for whatever reason), only one of the younger folks joins.
                           
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                          • Deemo

                            Deemo Well-Known Member

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                            I’m 38. Am I considered a youngster? . Love these slant
                             
                          • Charrlie_S

                            Charrlie_S Well-Known Member

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                            Yep, your one of the youngsters, that will replace three of us old fogies. I'm 76, it will take two of you to replace me. :)
                             
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                            • Ben Drinkin

                              Ben Drinkin Off the Wagon.. FABO Gold Member

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                              I dig my slant. Great engine and great conversation piece. It is currently in my Barracuda which will end up with a 340 4-speed and 3.91s (wanted one since I was 15). But the slant with an OD 4-speed will find a new home, probably an older half ton pick up..
                               
                            • Keystone

                              Keystone FABO Gold Member FABO Gold Member

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                              Thought I'd put a couple pictures here. I had heard that the Slant gets attention, but having just got the orange car on the road a couple months ago, I'm still learning this lesson.


                              So I was at a friend's wedding yesterday and they had designated parking for old cars. Lined up were: Challenger with a 440, Studebaker Hawk, Pontiac Solstice (not sure why that was there), a More-door Dart (he's a member on here), Chevelle, a More-door Fairlane, an Avanti, and my orange '73 with the Slant.

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                              Notice where the crowd was gathered :D

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                              • pishta

                                pishta I know I'm right....

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                                The bowtie 350 is rapidly falling from grace too due to the flood of cheap LS1 (Gen III, IV and V) motors found in everything from trucks to Vettes. Big power, good supply and EFI. But the six was, like the 318, a utilitarian motor: dependable, low maintenance, and inexpensive to maintain. Never really produced for the performance market. My old mechanic buddy had 3 Big Lincoln V12s that were worth pennies on the dollars that he used restoring them as no one wants them. Stuff just falls out of favor. Hold on to them. I dont think the supply will ever completely dry up as these hulks seem to be everywhere in non running states. Its hard for a manufacturer to outlay the capital to invest in a casting for a motor that has about a <1% market share in the hot rod community. Dont wait for the next manufacturer to make something for your slant, YOU make it, or adapt if from some other motor. They are all just pumps, and a BMW straight 6 stripped down to the block and crank is not that different from a slant and look what they are getting out of those. Lets get back to the hot-rod culture of adaptation and fabrication. That's where the fun is.
                                Proud owner of a slant that is: Ford EDIS fired, Toyota turbocharged, MS2 managed, bung- in-head injected, Crane cammed, home made induction fed, Nippondenso started..and its painted International Harvester Red..sitting in a car that came with a 273-4 that has "Formula 6" badges now.
                                 
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                                • /sixchall

                                  /sixchall Well-Known Member

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                                  622DEB6A-8A44-44E5-88C6-682CAB869FBD.png A9D07369-FF06-4ED7-B8D8-746F63ABC4A8.png F0F9A5D5-2B2B-4D8E-B97F-1B51D4CFADF1.png Talk about old slanters and Charrlie_S already gave away his age status. I just moved into my 70’s, so that puts me following DB460D74-2E88-47CA-A436-2A3A0D83F523.png CE976714-04F5-46D9-9EDC-A41D00E9BEBE.png close. In the time period that I’ve been driving, and Mopar has been my mainstay, I guess I’ve had a ongoing love affair with the Slant6. Although I have owned many big blocks and some kick a$$ small blocks I’ve had a soft spot for Chrysler’s six. After going through many Chrysler cars, as I move into my 70’s, I have one car left ( I’ve just pared down to one hobby car). This one not only draws people at the cruises and shows but dropping fuel in it down at the local gas station. This one is my 1970 Dodge Challenger Slant6, in SE trim, talk about an identity crisis, looks like a BB car, but lift the hood and the questions flow. I Dodge dealership purchased it as a trade-in with 40k on it for $1,100. in ‘72. retired it from daily use in 2005 with 562k on it. She’s a right purty car. Go-Mango w/ Black SE interior. Thanks, Al
                                   
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                                  • Abodybomber

                                    Abodybomber Breaking street machines , since 1983.....:)

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                                    Agreement.