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> Subaru conversion from a Buick swap
Darrensells
post Aug 23 2019, 03:19 AM
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I recently purchased a 1970 914 that was converted to a 3.8 Buick in 1982 but only completed to 90% finished. I am almost finished but the engine has to come out due to timing cover gasket leaking. I am considering changing it all out to a Subaru 6cyl and 5speed Subaru transmission. What donor car should I seek to complete this project? Can I use the engine cradle from the 3.8 Buick? Will it be modifiable? Thanks.
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Porschef
post Aug 23 2019, 04:45 AM
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A few guys have done that here, I’m sure they’ll chime in at some point. If all other systems are in and functional and you’re gonna stay water cooled , Subaru is probably your best bet.

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76-914
post Aug 23 2019, 07:47 AM
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I used an EZ30D from a 2003 LL Bean Outback. IIRC, things go to drive by wire in 2005 and CanBus shorty thereafter. Can't help you with the modification of your cradle. Here's how I did it but read it in it's entirity as mistakes were made and corrected. (IMG:style_emoticons/default/beerchug.gif) (IMG:style_emoticons/default/welcome.png) http://www.914world.com/bbs2/index.php?showtopic=201776
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Chi-town
post Aug 23 2019, 10:16 AM
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You will not be able to use anything from the buick swap except the radiator setup.
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Darrensells
post Aug 23 2019, 11:02 AM
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[quote name='Chi-town' date='Aug 23 2019, 11:16 AM' post='2740839']


Can you use the cradle with new motor mounts welded on? If not, who builds them or can it just be custom done locally? Thanks
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Chi-town
post Aug 23 2019, 01:46 PM
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The mounts are in a completely different area and can't be added to the V6/V8 style mount.

Currently only Renegade is making a bolt in cradle at $1k each
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Darrensells
post Aug 23 2019, 01:51 PM
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QUOTE(Chi-town @ Aug 23 2019, 02:46 PM) *

The mounts are in a completely different area and can't be added to the V6/V8 style mount.

Currently only Renegade is making a bolt in cradle at $1k each



My mechanic says since so much has been invested into the Buick 3.8 setup, I should keep it with a 3.8 GM. He makes some good points. It would be cheaper. Just need a newer fuel injected engine. The 77 Regal engine does not have a lot of power and it is carb.
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mepstein
post Aug 23 2019, 02:19 PM
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It just depends what your goals are. There's a reason the suby swaps are popular.


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Chris H.
post Aug 23 2019, 03:11 PM
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QUOTE(Darrensells @ Aug 23 2019, 02:51 PM) *

QUOTE(Chi-town @ Aug 23 2019, 02:46 PM) *

The mounts are in a completely different area and can't be added to the V6/V8 style mount.

Currently only Renegade is making a bolt in cradle at $1k each



My mechanic says since so much has been invested into the Buick 3.8 setup, I should keep it with a 3.8 GM. He makes some good points. It would be cheaper. Just need a newer fuel injected engine. The 77 Regal engine does not have a lot of power and it is carb.


And the Renegade cradle is designed to work with the 901 trans I think...you can't use the Subaru trans unless they have updated it.

There are a couple of great 3.8 Buick V6 cars on the board...check Phoenix-MN and pjhaun. There was also a white 4.3 Vortec floating around a LONG time ago that was very nice. Not a bad idea to stick with the Buick and just find a higher performance engine. Much easier than starting over. The challenge is that it's nearly impossible to find a 5 speed EZ30D Subaru donor, in fact I have never seen one. This means you have to source the trans from one car and the engine/wiring harness/other stuff from another. And the wiring....oh the wiring.... (IMG:style_emoticons/default/headbang.gif) . If you were starting with a bare shell that would be fine, but you have an almost completed swap already. Totally up to you though...the EZ30D is a VERY good engine and the Subaru trans is a significant upgrade.
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Chi-town
post Aug 23 2019, 04:01 PM
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There are no 5 speed EZ30D, Subaru never made one.

I know a local guy with a built 3.8 if you need more power.
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porschetub
post Aug 23 2019, 04:49 PM
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QUOTE(Darrensells @ Aug 24 2019, 07:51 AM) *

QUOTE(Chi-town @ Aug 23 2019, 02:46 PM) *

The mounts are in a completely different area and can't be added to the V6/V8 style mount.

Currently only Renegade is making a bolt in cradle at $1k each



My mechanic says since so much has been invested into the Buick 3.8 setup, I should keep it with a 3.8 GM. He makes some good points. It would be cheaper. Just need a newer fuel injected engine. The 77 Regal engine does not have a lot of power and it is carb.


I would if I ever did this sort of thing the Buick is very good engine,go for a later one with FI,cheap as chips to buy and if late enough they make good power,had an Australian built Holden with Gen 11 3.8 seem to remember it was 220hp,sold it with 460,000kms on it still ran great....bulletproof.
You say 90% done ,you are much closer than moving to a Suby six.
Good luck.
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PatrickB
post Aug 24 2019, 12:38 PM
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My mechanic says since so much has been invested into the Buick 3.8 setup, I should keep it with a 3.8 GM. He makes some good points. It would be cheaper. Just need a newer fuel injected engine. The 77 Regal engine does not have a lot of power and it is carb.
[/quote]

You might have the old odd fire 3.8, tough as nails but not huge horsepower. hard on timing chains... had one a long time ago in a Pontiac Astre wagon with a 5 speed. Car was quick enough because it was light. I'd be happy with your engine freshened up but if you want more power there's lots of bolt in options.
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jb6000
post Aug 25 2019, 09:12 AM
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From a practicality and cost point your mechanic is right. Some of us are twisted and build something difficult and end up with a specific set up that is really not available anywhere.

Lower center of gravity and less weight are probably not his first thoughts.
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914forme
post Aug 25 2019, 11:40 AM
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3.8 GM engine is a fine engine, I would go EFI and supercharged if you want to make something odd and interesting. Stock it is 240HP, a PCM and a pulley swap and you are getting closer to 270 if you think you need it.

240 is a pretty decent number in a 914

Engine is darn near bullet proof, except the latter ones that switched to a plastic water inlet manifold. But most of them have been fixed by now.
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Darrensells
post Aug 25 2019, 11:57 AM
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QUOTE(914forme @ Aug 25 2019, 12:40 PM) *

3.8 GM engine is a fine engine, I would go EFI and supercharged if you want to make something odd and interesting. Stock it is 240HP, a PCM and a pulley swap and you are getting closer to 270 if you think you need it.

240 is a pretty decent number in a 914

Engine is darn near bullet proof, except the latter ones that switched to a plastic water inlet manifold. But most of them have been fixed by now.


Do I need to change over the intake on these fwd 3800 SC engines? What I have read is you need the RWD Camaro upper and lower intake. Thanks. This would be much faster to build and more economical.
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whitetwinturbo
post Dec 2 2019, 11:30 PM
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......research "bad penny" for inspiration!
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