Easy said then done.

1971 - 1974 Mopars

  1. Robert Schaad

    Robert Schaad Well-Known Member

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    I read a lot of posts about this and that. How it is easier to do this then that. A lot of good advice but the biggest NON answered question is, What equipment do you have now that others do not. I have a garage, engine picker, floor jacks and manual tools. I have been restoring my car by myself with these few tools and do not have the money or great modern garage to do it in. So as you give ideas and opinions, please remember, not every one has your money or means. I put a 400 BB with transmission in a 76 Aspen from the top in about 45 minutes by myself in a garage with no special equipment or tools. Of course that was the engine and trans with exhaust manifolds on. The rest of course took longer.












    engine Aspen 6.jpg
     
  2. BeepBeepRR

    BeepBeepRR FBBO Gold Member FBBO Gold Member

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    When I put the 440 into this 71 Satellite I jacked the rear of the car up as high as I could get it and put the rear on jackstands. Which, when I did that gave me a super easy angle to put the engine and trans in at the same time. Then I was able to just put a jack under the tailshaft of the trans and lift it enough to put the crossmember in. Then took it off the rear stands and it dropped right in. Done by myself in about an hour. Spent more time securing the ass of the car than it took to stab the engine in. I pretty much have the same stuff you have Although I do have 2 3 ton jacks.
     
  3. #41

    #41 Well-Known Member

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    My buddy and I started running a hobby stock car when we lived in apartments and had no garage, welder, cherry picker, or anything really beyond hand tools. Equipment is great, but will is more important.
     
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    • Photon440

      Photon440 FBBO Gold Member FBBO Gold Member

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      Will is certainly important, but don't forget youth. :) I remember, as a much younger person, laying under a car with a transmission on my chest, grunting and pushing it up into place and holding it with one arm and a knee while starting bolts with the other hand... I wouldn't do that now, and to be honest I really don't think I even could.
       
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      • 440Coronet500

        440Coronet500 Well-Known Member

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        I always say it's much easier to talk about it than actually doing it. The older I get I definitely believe it. I've always had just basic hand tools to do most of the work on my cars. Drive and ambition can take you a long way! 440'
         
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        • T2R9

          T2R9 FBBO Gold Member FBBO Gold Member

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          My first engine swap was on a lawn with a rented cherry picker using cheap plywood so it would roll. I had a tiny shed for the crappy tools I owned at the time. I spent so much time on my back over the years fixing things my body has had enough.
           
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          • Moparfeind

            Moparfeind FBBO Gold Member FBBO Gold Member

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            I once put a 496 and a rock crusher in a 1971 Corvette with just a hammer.
             
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            • Bob Sawyer

              Bob Sawyer FBBO Gold Member FBBO Gold Member

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              Back in 1979 my Mopar bud and I drove from Bluefield, WVA to Indianapolis for a Car Craft car show. Right out of Bluefield the engine rear seal started leaking. (Local repair shop installed the upper half backwards the day before) We kept going, determined to get to Indy and went through 23 quarts of oil. The undercarriage was saturated with oil.
              Anyway, Sunday morning before we headed back home, we found a tool rental store and rented a pitman arm puller. At the hotel, we pulled the car up on the curb, jacked up the other side and placed the spare under that tire and dropped the oil pan. Found the problem and replaced the seal - installed it correctly and buttoned everything up and headed home. No leaks. I don't recall all the details of the repair, but I remember well the experience. I wouldn't try that now with what few hand tools we had back then.
              Good times!
               
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              • Ironbuilt

                Ironbuilt FBBO Gold Member FBBO Gold Member

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                At 17 years old, I pulled a 383 out of a Satellite Sebring Plus with a tree branch and a cum-a-long. The whole time I was cranking the cum-a-long, the branch was creaking and popping. I lived to tell the story and my then girlfriend got a 383 in her 73 Charger SE. Today, I have probably $100,000 in tools and equipment, but I wish I still had the vigor of my youth. With age came wisdom though.
                 
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                • Beekeeper

                  Beekeeper FBBO Gold Member FBBO Gold Member

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                  :lol:
                   
                • Bb70charger500

                  Bb70charger500 FBBO Gold Member FBBO Gold Member

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                  My first eng swap was under a tree with a chain and a pick up pulling away from the car !
                  We didn't die!

                  I had to do some major welding once under my 47 Buick I took car off frame (floor jacks and 4x4's then set up jack stands where I thought it would land! I then rolled it on its side! Got the stands my first try!
                  Again still alive!
                  Pulled motors with seat belts !
                  Changed tires with digging holes!

                  I should probably be dead!
                  But I did it now I have more equipment but less youth
                   
                • BeepBeepRR

                  BeepBeepRR FBBO Gold Member FBBO Gold Member

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                  My brother and I back when I was into the Mazda Rx7 craze... actually you could pick them up for 200.00 all day long. Anyhow we pulled a 12a rotary engine out of the car with our bare hands and dropped it into another car.. While they aren't that heavy they are awkward to carry. I just googled the dry weight... They weigh 347 pounds. I guess thats why my back hurts now.

                  My brother had an Opel Kadet wagon he rolled it over onto its side to yank the trans out.. lol
                   
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                  • JackR

                    JackR FBBO Gold Member FBBO Gold Member

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                    For a long time did every car repair outside...no garage in Buffalo NY....all my tools fit in a grey craftsman tool box except for one hydraulic jack stored in the trunk. Engines, transmissions everything. I must have been much better at it then than now.
                     
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                    • kbfallon

                      kbfallon Well-Known Member

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                      It isn't the Tools as much as it's How You use Them.
                       
                    • MoparDanMan

                      MoparDanMan FBBO Gold Member FBBO Gold Member

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                      The 1st engine I pulled was done in the back yard with a piece of railroad track lashed between two trees and a chain hoist. Good times.
                       
                    • SassyPants

                      SassyPants Well-Known Member

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                      For me, "The older I get the better I was". That is my story and I am sticking with it. :). I "learned" to wrench on old grain trucks and old JD putt-putts. Whatever we had in the tool box was what got used to replace starters and such. There were some cool days in NE, Mo when some of that work got done laying on a seed sack on frozen ground. Ah, "the good old days". NOT.
                       
                    • Tomcat

                      Tomcat Member

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                      My favorite memory is my first engine swap. I had a 73 roadrunner back in high school in 82. Man I thought that 318 was fast!.......till I came across a V8 Vega and got dusted while grenading the little 318. I changed it out with a handful of hand tools. A junk yard special I bought for $75, laying on the ground with snow falling in my face. My pops had quite a streak of fun with me over that, but I'll never forget "my first time" hahaha
                       
                    • Bobby Sixkiller

                      Bobby Sixkiller Well-Known Member

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                      Tree plus come along equals the first cherry picker I had. It sucked. But it was better than walking
                       
                    • Moparmann

                      Moparmann Well-Known Member

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                      Quote "I remember, as a much younger person, laying under a car with a transmission on my chest, grunting and pushing it up into place and holding it with one arm and a knee while starting bolts with the other hand... I wouldn't do that now, and to be honest I really don't think I even could.":thumbsup: Yeah, I remember doing this as well, the second time around, though, I found out that a transmission jack was SO much easier!! As my Dad told me once, "The RIGHT tool makes the job easier, even if you only have to use it ONE time!!":)
                       
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                      • dirrk

                        dirrk Active Member

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                        Yeah man....my first engine replacement was done under a willow tree branch with a borrowed chainfall. It was only a slant 6 in a "62 4 dr Belvedere...my first car..$50... it's the photo in my profile. I raised the car on a bumper jack to get clearance underneath to work w/ chunks of firewood for safety stands..lol. I later replaced the 3 speed using the same safety stands , chest and knees. did most of the work with a Crescent wrench.....Good times. I was 16.
                         
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