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View Full Version : Engine Swap for 1990 Grand Wagoneer?


PA Woody Wagon
03-24-2003, 10:22 AM
Has anyone Swapped a 360 out of their wagoneer for something more fuel efficient? i'm looking at a few things but i wanna know your thought. Thanks

Zac
03-24-2003, 12:08 PM
Wagoneer's are not made to get good gas mileage. If you wanted to swap in a diffrent engine it would cost alot and in the end probably wouldnt save you very much money. These are just my thoughts so dont let them keep you from doing anything. If you found a engine to swap in that was easy and increased mpgs alot, than more power to ya, cause its better than I can do.
Oh yeah and welcome to the best web site for fsj's there is!

Good luck,
Zac

The Anti-Chrysler
03-25-2003, 12:27 AM
The unfortunate reality is that the G-Wag is inherently big, heavy and un-aerodynamic. Anything that you could swap in that would give you decent performance still in that vehicle would likely still yield low fuel economy. :rolleyes:

If you are a good mechanic, I would recommend a good used Chevy 350, '91-'95, with TBI fuel injection, and a TH-700r4 auto O/D tranny. The engine is very easy to wire, custom harnesses are readily available, there are tons of these engines and trannies, and motor mounts are avaliable from Advance Adapters. You would need to research transfer case adapters and driveshaft mods, if necessary. I would think this setup would gain you probably 4 mpg over a stock 360 with a 3 speed auto, and there would be a big performance boost to boot. :D

I'm going to swap in a Vortec 350, '96 to '00, for even better perfomance and economy, although a much more complicated swap. ;)

Unfortunately, what it requires to make a 360 powerful and fuel efficient, would cost as much, if not more, than a good used SBC engine. (Fuel injection retrofit, TFI upgrade, etc etc.)

Crazy_Jeepman
03-25-2003, 12:44 AM
SBC is a common swap. The TBI 350 I have in my Suburban I seen about 14 MPG with it on the highway, I feel it was a way better engine than the AMC 360, power and throttle response is just not even comparable. I am sure the Suburban is heavier than the Wag as well. I do not like the 700R4 though, and doubt with stock gearing would be a good idea, with the ratio's FSJ ran stock OD would not be needed. With my SHORT past experiance with the 700R4 it will never go into anything I own. TBI 350 with the TH400 and NP208 would almost be a natural swap in a pre 80 FSJ, 350/TH400/NP241 I think would be the ticket on the 80 and up FSJ's. I am under the impression that the NP208 and NP241 are the same case except the front driveshaft outputs are opossite each other. I have a NEW not Rebuilt GM TBI 350 with just over 22,000 miles on it, for sale.

The Anti-Chrysler
03-25-2003, 12:59 AM
I've had six vehicles with late model (post '88) 700R-4 trannies, and they never skipped a beat, not one of them. We have a '91 Jimmy with 185k on the original 700r-4, and it still shifts like a dream, with no leaks at all. I would assume Crazy Jeepman got a lousy tranny or an earlier version, which IS junk. Unless the Wag is pulling car carriers, it would be very good.

The 700r-4 would indeed be best if the Wag had 3.31's. It would be perfect. I had a K-1500 for a while that had 265-75R16 (about 32") tires with 3.42 gears and it was great with the O/D. The Wag's stock 225 or 235 tires would work great in this relationship. The first gear in a 700r-4 is much lower than the Th-400, or the 727, regardless of the rear axle ratio.

I think the O/D is key in increasing gas mileage, although otherwise it's not necessary.

The TBI SBC 350 is great, simple, parts are cheap, seals and the such are much improved (read: less oil leaks!), and they're dime a dozen.

mdill
03-25-2003, 01:32 AM
If you are really nuts , (I fit in this catagory but am time and $ limited).

I think the 4.2 or 4.0 (Whatever it is) chey/olds/gmc trailblazer engine
would make a sweet swap, though you would want to have diffy gears
in the 4.00 ish range as that engine like to spin to get some power out
but with overdrive trany and the reduced displacment it should be a
17+ mpg setup.
The idea of a overhead cam I 6 in a wagoneer just brings it back to
its roots, only with more power. (63->65 ?? , all came with the 232
OHC six)

Mike D.

The Anti-Chrysler
03-25-2003, 01:46 AM
A great idea, if it was feasible. The problem is that this engine would cost a fortune (can't be many wrecks yet), and it would have to go with its same tranny (4L-60E, which isn't bad), and all of the rats nest of wiring needed for an OBD equipped engine of this type.

This GM 4.2L I-6 engine puts out about 275 hp, and 270 lb-ft of torque stock, which is great, although the gearing would indeed have to go way up around 4.11 as mentioned to put this engine in its happy rev range.

I can't even begin to imagine all the custom fabrication needed for the swap. Definitely not for the novice.

I do know that GM is starting to offer engines like the 6.0 liter V-8 in a swap in type package from GM Performance Parts. Heeheee..

I mentioned the 350, because it's a relatively straightforward swap with the right tools and know-how. I can get a good engine tranny combo in my area for around $1000, so it's relatively cheap also.

jc turtle
03-25-2003, 02:53 AM
I WOULD THINK THAT IF THE WAG HAS 2.73 GEARS THAT THE OD TRANS WOULD MAKE THE RPM'S OF THE ENGINE TOO LOW. JUST A THOUGHT. JOHN

jeepjake
03-25-2003, 03:14 AM
Originally posted by Crazy_Jeepman:
SBC is a common swap. The TBI 350 I have in my Suburban I seen about 14 MPG with it on the highway, ......Jeez!! That's what I get around TOWN in my GW with 360?? Hwy is 16.8-18.2, depending on how "spirited" I'm driving. Of course, that's with about $6k in an engine made for perf/mileage and EFI, but the 360 is doable and is a little stouter than the chev 350 in my book, just needs to be massaged a bit to wring the power and mileage out of it.

http://cccsc.virtualave.net/images/rockers7.JPG

http://cccsc.virtualave.net/images/engine80.JPG

joe
03-25-2003, 03:15 AM
Originally posted by jc turtle:
I WOULD THINK THAT IF THE WAG HAS 2.73 GEARS THAT THE OD TRANS WOULD MAKE THE RPM'S OF THE ENGINE TOO LOW. JUST A THOUGHT. JOHNIt would. It would contantly be automatically kicked back in 3rd gear so you'd never get any benifit or use from 4th(OD).

olin18
03-25-2003, 04:13 AM
This is kind of out there, but maybe good food for thought. How about a newer 4.0 I6 HO with a blower on it. I see to recall a while ago reading about a blower for this motor in JP mag. It provides good HP and TQ #'s. That would be pretty interesting.

89grand
03-25-2003, 04:28 AM
I just can't ever imagine my Grand without an AMC but that's just me.

The Anti-Chrysler
03-25-2003, 04:39 AM
The unfortunate fact is that the AMC engines require alot of money and work to be what they are capable of. As stated above, jeepjake spent $6,000. The average guy just doesn't have that kind of cash to burn, nor the know-how to assemble such an engine. You can take an off the shelf 350 TBI with a O/D or even non-O/D tranny and bolt in a great engine. I don't think many would dispute that in stock form, the 350 TBI is much better than the 360.

With 2.73 gears, the O/D would be best only for cruising and at highway speeds. The stouter grunt of the 350 combined with a lockup torque converted would make it possible. It would be best to have 3.31's, however, without a single doubt. That can be as easy as an axle swap, and axles for these are cheap, least in my area.

I think it's time to let the creator of this thread post in and tell us what he's driving. We're all assuming he has a post 1980 Wag, but may actually have a '79 or older.

PA Woody Wagon - let us know the details of your rig.

The Anti-Chrysler
03-25-2003, 04:45 AM
I just can't ever imagine my Grand without an AMC but that's just me.

Point taken, however I think the Cherokee and GW were the only FSJ's Jeep produced that didn't have a non-AMC engine option?? :confused:

The Buick 350, the 327, the 230 I-6, etc. :D

I would never swap out the AMC in the case of a "survivor", or a restoration. In most other cases, it may be the most economical route for some.... and what Jeep has always been is a cumulation of parts from the General and F*rd, as we all know. tongue.gif

The Anti-Chrysler
03-25-2003, 04:46 AM
Duh, I forgot the post stated a 1990 Wag!!! Disregard what I said about vehicle info above!!!

Green Giant
03-25-2003, 07:38 AM
Originally posted by The Anti-Chrysler:
</font><blockquote>quote:</font><hr /> I just can't ever imagine my Grand without an AMC but that's just me.

Point taken, however I think the Cherokee and GW were the only FSJ's Jeep produced that didn't have a non-AMC engine option?? :confused:

The Buick 350, the 327, the 230 I-6, etc. :D

I would never swap out the AMC in the case of a "survivor", or a restoration. In most other cases, it may be the most economical route for some.... and what Jeep has always been is a cumulation of parts from the General and F*rd, as we all know. tongue.gif </font>[/QUOTE]The 327 is an AMC engine, but you seem to forget that anything FSJ that is '71 or older is not AMC but Kaiser and even started life as Willys.

Crazy_Jeepman
03-25-2003, 07:45 AM
Originally posted by Green Giant:
The 327 is an AMC engine, but you seem to forget that anything FSJ that is '71 or older is not AMC but Kaiser and even started life as Willys.
[/QB]70 actually, My 70 is AMC. I have to wonder where Jeep Would be if AMC had never bought it. Better off maybe? ;)

PA Woody Wagon
03-25-2003, 08:33 AM
thanks guys for the info. is there any info available on maybe a diesel swap. my dad loves his 6.5 turbo diesel in his K3500 duelly.

mdill
03-25-2003, 10:00 AM
I guess I don't see where if cost is the modivation, that doing a engine swap
is going to be a step in the right direction. A 350 TBI is a nicer setup than a
poorly tuned 360 with a carb, in the same state of tune the edge goes to
the 360 (just a few extra cubes). For a driver there is no sence in doing a
swap to "save money" it aint going to happen ! If you want TBI put it on the
360 (Not a big deal). If you are after mild performance upgrades it will be cheaper
to apply that to the 360 , if you want to get into the real high performance
area then the advantage shifts to a SBC.
The problem in swapping an engine is not getting it in the hole and bolting it to
a trans, it is all the little stuff that eats you alive, all the plumbing, wirring, exhaust
radiator hoses, linkages .. if you want a reliable setup that is what will take the
time to get done in a mannor that will last a long time.

Mike D.

Mikel
03-25-2003, 10:11 AM
IMO with a TBI on your 360 and reasonable gearing, you should be able to get an honest 15MPG. I've heard very good things about TPIGUY's kits (www.customefis.com).
Of course, for REAL economy, there is nothing like a diesel :D

Joe Guilbeau
03-25-2003, 12:59 PM
If I had money to burn here is what I might do, for a powertrain swap.

GM Goodwrench Crate Motor PN 10067353...$1400
Edelbrock MPFI PN EDE-3503..............$2000
Advance Adapters PN 712756..............$ 365
NV 4500 5-Speed w/Overdrive.............$1500
NV 242 2WD/4WD-Hi/Lo Transfer Case......$ 750

Spend about $7000 total to get her setup right and with all the accessories needed, and off you go.

Probably get 17MPG on the highway if your lucky.

Probably smoke all 4 tires in 4WD.

Best thing is you can just buy a brand new mill for $1400, not rebuilt, when the engine goes south.

Or do what I did, and save all that money and find a donor engine like the one I found for $450 dollars, with a 30 day full money back guarantee from a local junk yard, I lucked out, it runs great, seems as if someone had just rebuilt it, and then wrecked the front end.

wordsmith
03-26-2003, 03:01 AM
See the post "a 6 replacing an 8" for some other comments about swapping for economy. Made me rethink my plan, so I'm going to try a 304.

FSJeeper
03-26-2003, 03:17 AM
The most cost effective way to significantly increase fuel mileage in a FSJ is to go diesel.

20 mpg plus very easily. Early diesel Blazers were epa rated at 29 mpg on the highway.

mdill
03-26-2003, 03:18 AM
The $1400 crate motor is not a performance engine, it is as lazy as
a stock mild 360. To even start to get in the game look at the 330 hp
chev crate ~$2400, ($3400 for either of the hotter engines) and your
budget is awfully optimistic on the "little" stuff , exhaust, wirring, radiator
mounts ... if you have all the skills to put it together great, if not there
is a lot more than $1100 in labor and fabrication if it has to be hired out.

Mike D.

FSJeeper
03-26-2003, 03:18 AM
BTW Jeep Jake, superb craftsmanship in your work. Got more pics?

AM Woody
03-26-2003, 03:27 AM
Made me rethink my plan, so I'm going to try a 304. Interesting you should say that. I know a current and a former Jeep engineer. One of them told me the next phase in evolution for the GW was going to be a 304 with EFI, but then production was cancelled. Man, that woulda been sweet...

Andy

key
03-26-2003, 03:22 PM
Well, Here is a deal.
GM Performance 454ci 420hp (7.4L) Engine Two year warranty included. This is a NEW rebuild GM Performance 454 Engine.
Item on ebay, buy it now for 2199.00
Item number 2408933930.
If I was up to it I would by it and put it in mine, if that won't push your Expletive Deleted!Expletive Deleted!Expletive Deleted!Expletive Deleted!Expletive Deleted! down the road nothing will, and it may just smoke all in 4WD !!!

spacefabric
03-26-2003, 05:07 PM
Hey guys! This is a great thread. I am new and thought I would chime in. I am driving my Wag daily on a 150 mile round trip. I know... I am crazy cause I sho'nuff cant afford the gas prices. I just love to drive her and will do what I can to keep her as my daily...(working closer to home is my next step).

I live in Cali, so any swaps are pretty much out of the question. I would have to modify the stock 360. I imagine that a rebuild with increased compression ratio, a hotter cam, some sort of Fuel injection set up and a free flowing intake and exhaust system could really improve power and economy.

As far as swaps there is one motor/trans combo I havent hear yet. That is the LT1/4L60E.

This motor is a multi-port fuel injected motor boasting a reverse cooling system that allows for 10:1 compression and major timing advance. There are 3 levels of LT1 that I know of:

315 hp Corvette (expensive!)
285 hp Camaro/Firebird (expensive!)
265 hp Caprice?Impala SS (Hmm...)

Yes... the 1994-1996 Caprice Classic LTZ and especially the "P" coded (vin) Police package Caprices had the LT1. I know because I used to own one. The car weighs close to 4000 pounds! But the police didnt use them for nothing. I averaged 20 mpg in that puppy and got 25 mpg on a long trip doing 80-90 mph all the way!

Did I mention that that motor is touquey? They came stock with a 3:08 rear end ration but that car would mooooove!

One draw back is that the trans is costly to rebuild but that can be tossed for a better trans i am sure.

A very reliable motor for sure.

The Anti-Chrysler
03-27-2003, 01:29 AM
If one were to go to the extents of swapping in a LT1 engine, then it would be much easier to go the route of a TPI engine. With OBD I or II, no engine driven fan, the cost of the engine, custom fabrication, etc etc, the LT1 is a very expensive and in-depth swap, one I never heard of in a FSJ.

I have a '95 Z-28 Camaro with the LT1, and know of how good the motor is, but I don't think it's a reasonable swap in a FSJ. I had considered a LT1 swap into my '91 Olds Bravada, but after much research, went with a '98 Vortec 5700. It has about 20 - 30 hp. less than the Camaro version, and as much torque, in the more conventional small block format. Plus, they're much cheaper and more plentiful. It's obvious that the Vortec 5700 doesn't have the high end powerband of the LT1, but it's not really necessary for a FSJ.

PA Woody Wagon
03-27-2003, 08:09 AM
So FSJeepster where might i find info on possibly swapping a blazer diesel inot the wagoneer. would i need to change transmissions or just get and adapter? by the way do you know what size those diesel's were? thanks

packard41
03-27-2003, 10:32 AM
Forget engine swap! I had an 88 g-wag I drove 90 miles a day to work.it got 8 miles to a gallon till I put locking hubs on it then it went to 12 mpg with michelin 10.5x 31 tires everything else was stock.

spacefabric
03-27-2003, 04:09 PM
Originally posted by packard41:
Forget engine swap! I had an 88 g-wag I drove 90 miles a day to work.it got 8 miles to a gallon till I put locking hubs on it then it went to 12 mpg with michelin 10.5x 31 tires everything else was stock.What about on an 89? I notice that there is a vacuum switch on the dash to switch between 2 and 4 wheel drive. Is the 88 the same and would I be able to do the same swap???

Crazy_Jeepman
03-27-2003, 04:36 PM
I can guarantee you that Locking hubs will not give you a 4 MPG increase. For the most part it would take forever to pay for the Locking Hubs from the savings in MPG. I been running FSJ's for a long time, Full Time 4X4 and Part Time, there is not 4 MPG differance between any of them, unless you go to a I6 and that spread is not that great.

Joe Guilbeau
03-27-2003, 06:19 PM
There was a 25mpg Cherokee, in the Brookland Series of articles...with the AC blowing, if you can believe that! (not sure that I do...)

Had Air Conditioning, 2.73 Diffs, 258CID, 5 Speed Manual Trans, probably small hard thin tires:&gt;

I have the article somewhere, I am sure some of the bookhounds on the forum have the Brookland stuff, at least I think it was Brookland.

They reprinted a series of Test from various Road and Track, and 4-Wheel Drive articles, by popular magazines and put them together and reprinted in a single binder.

All on the Cherokee and Wagoneers.

packard41
03-28-2003, 12:11 PM
Yes 90 miles a day I drove it! and it did go from 8 to 12 with only that change.

packard41
03-28-2003, 12:15 PM
As for vac switch your still pushhing all the gears and front drive shaft.cost was $58.00 from advance auto parts ordered the for a chevy blazer cause they were'nt in book for g-wag.

Bob Barry
03-28-2003, 01:49 PM
Originally posted by Joe Guilbeau:
There was a 25mpg Cherokee, in the Brookland Series of articles...with the AC blowing, if you can believe that! (not sure that I do...)

Had Air Conditioning, 2.73 Diffs, 258CID, 5 Speed Manual Trans, probably small hard thin tires:&gt;Don't forget, though; those were Australian gallons (equivalent to about 1.25 gallons).

Still, that powertrain would get over 20mpg. I'd love to find that combo someday, and put on a 4.0 head and FI setup for a true 25mpUSg rig. Make it a black Laredo 2-door with the gold-tint side-windows, please! smile.gif

wordsmith
03-28-2003, 11:55 PM
RE: FSJeeper's bit about diesel-ing an FSJ - anybody know a source of info? That was my first choice for repowering my Wag. Most common truck diesel [and in GM FS cars too] is built on the GM 351 block for which I'm sure there are lots of toys you can get for putting that block in a FSJ.

The bug comes in adding all the plumbing & controls for diesel - return lines to the tank [tho' I always thought you could use a vent line for that] glow plug wiring & controls, fuel cut-off, etc etc. It'd be a nice project but would take time and mucho money & a ready, helpful source of d-parts to rummage thru. Any diesel mechanics out there have an expert opinion?

I have a 304 to replace my 360 but I may try a 258 for a bit just for funsies - will make a good mag article, "How to repower your gaz guzzlin' FSJ and lose your mind at the same time".

wordsmith
03-29-2003, 12:02 AM
Also looked into swapping a 4-cyl gas for a 4-cyl diesel in a '88 Ford Ranger and that's where I first found out about all the extra d-controls you need that a gas setup doesn't have. Blocks would change no problem, just the extras kill ya. Canned that idea as well.