4.6L Northstar in a 1985 Camaro

I currently have a 1985 Camaro. it has a 2.8L currently..been thinking about a V8 swap..but i've read that it is easier to put a bigger V6 in it..if this is true..would i be able to make a simple switch to a 4.6L
Northstar out of the new Caddy's?
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Anything can be done if you have the right amount in your checking account. There is probably enough room to fit a 500ci Caddy motor in the engine bay. I think the transmission, smog equiptment, and computer might be a bit of trouble for your project.
...Ron -- 68' Camaro RS 88' Firebird Formula 00' Mustang GT Vert
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I could be wrong but I'm pretty sure the 4.6 Northstar is a V8. I think there is a 3.6 Northstar though.
--
Leo



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Leo, you are right..the 4.6 is a V8. So is it true that placing a bigger V6 in it would be easier, then putting a V8. I mean if a 4.3 Vortec will fit then i'll go that route. Thanks

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A 4.3 will fit as it has an almost identicle footprint as a small block chevy. It was patterned after one. The mounts might be a different story though since there weren't any used in the third gen cars. Easily remedied though with either a welder or a drill as long as the foot hits the crossmember in a good spot.
...Ron -- 68' Camaro RS 88' Firebird Formula 00' Mustang GT Vert
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snipped-for-privacy@nb.sympatico.ca wrote:

A 4.3L will be a load of pain for nothing. Okay, if you plan on swapping in an SFI 4.3L from an OBD2 truck, go for it. It's a custom job with the whole exhaust, with the work of a 350 swap anyway...
Since that might not be the option you want, I whole-heartedly suggest a 3.4L v6 swap--either the GM crate or find a junked 93-95 F-body.
If I was in the position and had my 95 Camaro 3.4L at least working, I'd pretty much give you that engine--it has the intake off of it right now. I am swapping in (eventually) a FWD 3.4L with the aluminum heads.
Yes, that engine will flip to RWD, but needs minor tweaks for 185hp's/210tq under the hood...
Anyway, the 3.4L is a smooth engine compared to any 90* v6 with a balance shaft in it...go that route.
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I've thought it over and I think..(thinking out loud) that if I make the swap I will go V8..but the kicker is that I may not go fuel injected I may go carb...I'm hunting down a 455 rocket as we speak (think i may have found one 455 out of a poncho..and 1 out of a oldsmobile)..I was talking to a guy yesterday that swapped a v6 for a 5.7 tpi..said if he had it to do again he'd go big block carbed..alot easier..then all you have to worry about fabrication mounts and front suspension..another question I'm trying to figure out is what my stock tranny is in my 85 camaro..I know its a 4 speed auto..but don't know much of anything else..( heard that it might be a 700 R4) but really don't know..not even sure how to tell. I'm looking for big horses..actually bragging rights ( not sure I'll ever grow up)
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You have a 700R4 transmission but the bell housing is different between 2.8L V6 and V8. Radiator and springs are different. Frame side motor mounts are probably different. Exhaust is different. Wiring and fuel system doesn't matter if you go with a carb but it wouldn't be legal.
It's not a complicated swap because all the parts are available. No fabrication needed. But, why not just buy a V8 car?
Interesting you mention a 455. I happen to know that an old Pontiac (350 to 455 ci) will drop right down on the V8 motor mounts for a 3rd gen F-body. Not sure about Oldsmobile blocks.
A mildly built 455 Pontiac, an aftermarket 700R4, and a Buick/Olds/Pontiac to Chevy bellhousing adapter plate would make one wicked car. It'd never be EPA legal, though.
-rev
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I live in Canada..and quite sure that a EPA standards don't apply..so what your saying is that with a little time and money we could have a great street/strip car? I think if I can get ahold of the guy with the motor and he doesn't want an arm and leg for it I might just give it a go...here's another question...would the 700R4 stand up to that much power...I heard that these motor can put out 500ft/lbs of torque. Any ways any comments would surely help..
Thanks, Patrick colford 85 Camaro

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snipped-for-privacy@nb.sympatico.ca wrote:

Well, EPA may not apply, but I'm sure Canada has it's own air polution regulations that are similar. In addition, I highly doubt a 4.6L engine would put out any torque any where near that level. I did a quick search and it looks like the things are a dog in that area, like less that 250 Ft/lbs and less than 250 HP. You just aren't going to get high torque on a small displacement motor without some sort of forced induction (short of nitrous).
--
Cy Welch
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Thanks Cy..but the displacement I was talking about was from a 455ci poncho engine..not the 4.6L. I heard that the 455ci put out 500ft/lb torque. I may be wrong..it's happen before. but thanks Cy for your input. Anyways..I have fabricated a bellhousing plate that should work on my 700R4 to bolt it to the 455. I had a guy tell me that I needed not worry about my tranny holding up..its the rear-end that I have to worry about..any idea how I would tell what the gear ratio is in my existing rear-end? I like I said its a base model 85 Camaro. Thanks again. Patrick Colford 85 Camaro

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snipped-for-privacy@nb.sympatico.ca wrote:

On a stock 700r4 you are likely to be getting really close to the limits if not beyond. I understand that a built up 700r4 can handle up to about 700 HP and around 600 Ft/Lbs, but I understand the stock ones will just barely stand up to a slightly warmed over TPI 350 as well. You might also want to check, because its possible that the internals are lighter duty on a V6 700r4. I would recommend doing a little checking with reputable transmission shops on how much your tranny can take in stock condition, while I'm pretty sure it could take it if built for it, I'm not sure about stock condition.
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Cy Welch
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A stock 700R4 certainly won't handle a 455 but a well built aftermarket one could. If not, use a TH350 or 400. The overdrive would be nice, though.
Presumably the stock rear isn't strong enough. SLP upgraded it in the '92 Firehawk, and it didn't have anywhere near the torque you'd get off a 455. The SLP catalog used to list a bolt-in Dana 44 conversion. It was expensive.
Unless you use drag slicks it'll probably shred tires long before breaking the read end. The windshield will break across the bottom unless you strengthen the body with subframe connectors, roll bar, strut tower brace, etc.
Beware if you're in the market for a Pontiac 455: They are very rare. Most people selling a "455" really have a 350. The block has casting marks for the displacement. Don't believe anyone unless you see the number.
Also, the later ones really didn't have much power. Anything '74 and up will need higher compression heads and a performance cam.
-rev
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Thanks Reverend, I didn't know that stuff..I contacted the guy that has the 455's but he wants way to much for a engine that has to be totally rebuilt..so again I'm on the look..I will find one..I really had no idea about the tranny as you have seen I've heard that the stock 700R4 will hold up..but I do know a guy with a Muncie, so that maybe the easier route to go..anyways thanks again..and please keep the advice coming... thanks, Patrick Colford

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if I can stick a 96 lt1 in a 86 chev truck you can do this..

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