Lady Needs Your Help-Re: Camaro

I have a 1981 Chevy Camaro, which was giving to me by my older brother who is in the Army and doesn't have time to take care of the car anymore. It has a small 267 ( 4.4L ) V8 with almost 150,000 miles on
it. The car has been garaged for the last 5 years, and needs work done to it. My brother already told me that it needs a new rear main seal, because the car leaks about 4 quarts of oil a week!!!
I had it towed to a local mechanic to have them look it over, and they confirmed that yes, it does need a new rear main seal it that would cost $550 dollars. It also needs a complete, full tune up which they wanted $250 for, plus they said the carburetor needs to be rebuilt and that would be another $200 to $300 dollars.
Now my question is, I would like to have a bigger engine with more horsepower, so instead of investing money into this old and tired engine, could someone please give me a rough estimate of how much it would be to replace the 267 with a new or rebuilt 350 or 350 4 bolt engine??
Also, can you tell me if the transmission would have to be changed, and what else might have to be converted, such as the single exhaust to a dual exhaust??
I would like to know what you guys think a rough estimate of what a job like this would cost?? I would like to hear from you experts here first instead of just going to a repair shop and having them give me some outrageous price because they see a woman walking in and jack the price up on me. Any info. would greatly be appreciated!! Thank you!!!
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On Tue, 4 Jan 2005 14:19:04 -0500, snipped-for-privacy@webtv.net (MICHELLE H.) puked:

It would cost more that twice the $1000 they're asking for.
-- lab~rat >:-) The less you care, the more it doesn't matter.
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Now, I've got to say first that I'm in Canada, but those prices seem reasonable to me...at least, in Canadian bucks, anyway...as for US dollars, I can't say with any degree of accuracy.

If you DO swap-out the motor, and the motor you're swapping out is the original one that came with the car...KEEP THE OLD MOTOR!!! It might seem like a lot of space to waste in the garage for something yu're not going to use, but believe me when I say that, if you ever decided to sell it as a collectible car, with that original motor, you'll be able to get 10 times as much money for it as you would without it...even if it needs a complete rebuild to put it back into service by whoever buys it!!!

If you were to put another engine in, you MIGHT be able to stick with the current one, if it's a 350 or 400 Turbo transmission...if it's standard, I'm not sure, and I'll leave that to someone else who knows better.

The pricing you quotred for fixing it up sounds reasonable.
I can say that in Canada at least, a good used tranny will cost you upwards of $600 bucks USED if you swapped out the motor and didn't already have a strong enough tranny to take the load of the new engine.
The motor alone, if you got it used and in good (ie: not needing any MAJOR work to get it running right) will probably run you up to $1200, but would average out at about 800 bucks, (give or take rules applied, here).
My "generalized opinion" about the whole situation is this: Fix what ya got...cheaper for now, and it'll benefit you more in the long run if you ever do intend to sell it at some point down the road. (Pardon the pun. ;)

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I checked again tonight, and the engine is a 4.4L 267 V8. It was the small gas-saver 8 cylinder that they came out with in 1981.
I also checked the Vin numbers, and it is the original factory engine. I would like to keep the original engine in the car because I hear that its worth more that way, but is it possible to get more horsepower out of this engine?? Can you get 300 to 400 horsepower from a 267?? Also, is it possible to convert the single exhaust to a dual exhaust??
Thanks everyone for ALL of your great info. and answers, I really do appreciate it!!!
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First off, I would like to thank everyone for all their great advice, I really do appreciate it. After doing a search on the web, I came across the engine specs. for the 1981 Camaro. The 267 engine was listed as having 115 hp, while the 350 was listed at having 175 hp. This is something I would probably be happy with. I don't know what I was thinking when I said I wanted 300-400 horsepower out of this 267.
I would be willing to keep the original 267 numbers matching engine in the car if I could get the power of a factory 350. Anywhere close to at least 200 hp would be nice so that I don't have to be worried about being passed by my friend in her 1989 4 cylinder Chevy Cavalier!!!!! Which was a true story!!! When I drove the car a few years ago, I took it to work with me, and on the way home I was racing my friend home, because we both were going the sane way, and she past me in her 4 cylinder, 4 door Cavalier!!! The 267 is weak and has no power at all, so I woud love for it to have the power of the 350 engine.
Here is a link to the 1981 Camaros engine specs:
http://www.nastyz28.com/camaro/camaro81.html
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Excellent compromise, Michelle! I wish you the best of luck in all the swearing at your vehicle that you're about to start doing!
One other thing that you might consider is one of the newer-model Camaro V-6's, too...can probably get a good price on one from a wreck at a good salvage yard as well. It might be as expensive as a 350, but I've heard (haven't checked myself, so that comes with instructions to take 2 grains of salt with it...) that the performance is comparable to an 80's-grade 305m while keeping gas mileage within reasonable limits.
Might be something you would want to check into a bit before finalizing your engine swap...
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