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NOHOME
NOHOME UltimaDork
12/5/17 12:42 p.m.
KyAllroad (Jeremy) said:

I just started the reconstruction of the Monster Miata.  Ford 5.0 into a 93 Answer. Swap was already done and after a catastrophic engine failure I picked it up.  If you want the easy button swap I'll sell it along to you.  Literally everything is already done, just needs to be assembled.

I would been on this like Trump on a Ruble!

There is plenty of meat on the bone to still make this Miata "Yours" while saving a bunch of $$$, and it fits your need for a kit based project. Unlike a lot of projects that feel like a bunch of parts traveling in close formation, a V8 Miata feels first and foremost just like a Miata. Until you put your foot down.

 

The fact of the matter is that even though this board is home of the 20XX project, it is really hard to do an engine swapped project car that you WANT to drive, for cheap. Parts to do the drivetrain using all new or rebuilt parts front to rear would have eaten up your budget. Who wants to be driving a collection of junkyard parts when all done?

 

 

Snrub
Snrub Reader
12/5/17 4:26 p.m.

What about an ecotec miata swap?  It's less expensive than the k swap leaving more left over for other parts of the project.  If 180-200rwhp isn't enough you can slap the factory turbo setup from the LNF on the LE5.

penultimeta
penultimeta HalfDork
12/5/17 6:24 p.m.

Having never undertaken an engine swap project, I probably have no idea what I'm talking about, but from what I've gathered over the years, to do an engine swap for 10k, you're probably better off buying an already swapped car that needs work/someone lost interest halfway through and tweaking what needs to be tweaked. 

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
12/5/17 6:36 p.m.
alleykat said:

I swapped a 1.8 into my 90 Miata a few years back. I drove the snot out of it for years. I'm looking for the next level to cut my teeth on. An FC with a V8 sounds fun too. 

Just to set expectations - a 1.8 swap on a Miata is probably the easiest swap in existence other than a few old-school carburetted small block Chevy options.

My MGB swap falls into this price range, but it was a LOT of work. Not a bolt-together. Problem is, if you want a good engine and a good kit, you're going to have to pay someone for their time. That makes the $10k budget a little tight.

alleykat
alleykat Reader
12/5/17 11:19 p.m.

In reply to wearymicrobe :

WTF? Must weigh 1500 lb!

Daylan C
Daylan C SuperDork
12/5/17 11:21 p.m.

In reply to Snrub :

I don't have a Miata, but a friend who does mentioned this idea to me as what he's planning on once his track rat's 1.8 finally gives up. I looked into and it seems like an decent 8/10s option for less money if you're looking at a K swap. 

alleykat
alleykat Reader
12/5/17 11:22 p.m.

In reply to Snrub :

I have looked into the EcoTec swap. I need to drive a couple of Cobalt SS cars and see how that engine feels.

Daylan C
Daylan C SuperDork
12/5/17 11:25 p.m.

In reply to alleykat :

Apparently the people who make the swap kit I looked at recommend the 2.4 LE5 (From say, a not SS Cobalt) to start with and also claim you can safely use the turbo from a later SS on the stock long block and be safe. No idea if i'd trust them as I don't know who they are. Track use probably makes that combo less safe.

alleykat
alleykat Reader
12/5/17 11:34 p.m.
Keith Tanner said:
 a 1.8 swap on a Miata is probably the easiest swap in existence 

 

I have no delusions about the steepness of the learning curve. That is one of the reasons a K24 swap into a mx5 is intriguing. Everything from the flywheel back remains stock. I have a space to work, a hoist, a compressor and some air tools. I have rebuilt the suspension on a few BMW's, and changed several timing belts. I have to learn somehow. I'm eager to get in there and make some mistakes :) 

I have to say I am intrigued by the fc Rx7 swap. If I sold the E36 and the mx5, I could be well on my way finding a good swap candidate and a donor car.

alleykat
alleykat Reader
12/5/17 11:36 p.m.

In reply to Daylan C :

I meant the le5 version of the cobalt. I have the feeling the engine is a bit agricultural. I have never driven a Le5 car.

AwesomeAuto
AwesomeAuto New Reader
12/6/17 7:20 a.m.

My last 4 LS swaps don't add up to 10k. Don't overcomplicated it.

icaneat50eggs
icaneat50eggs Dork
12/6/17 7:29 a.m.
AwesomeAuto said:

My last 4 LS swaps don't add up to 10k. Don't overcomplicated it.

please elaborate, I'd love to see how you did this.

AwesomeAuto
AwesomeAuto New Reader
12/6/17 8:05 a.m.
icaneat50eggs said:
AwesomeAuto said:

My last 4 LS swaps don't add up to 10k. Don't overcomplicated it.

please elaborate, I'd love to see how you did this.

-Start with an iron truck block instead of an aluminum car block (all parts interchange between them).

-Rework your own wiring harness (takes about 6 hours and there are dozens of websites showing pinouts).

-Use truck accessories in cars that have the space, as well as truck intake/cover (truck intake makes more power than car intake).

-$35 Adapter plates allow regular small block chevy mounts to be used, making GM swaps easier and swaps more affordable using SBC kits .

-Don't use the old school mentality that everything has to be replaced to make power. 

---Stock rockers are 1.7 ratio and good to .620 lift.

---Stock pushrods work fine with most aftermarket valve springs.

---Stock internals are still good at extremely high horsepower.

---Stock heads flow as much as most aftermarket SBC heads and with the exception of 99-00 6.0 heads, they are all aluminum.

 

My last 4 swaps:

-Quad Turbo 4.8 controlled by Microsquirt. Total swap cost (including turbo setup and microsquirt: $2500

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3XJy6Onn43k

-5.3 swapped 69 Chevelle. Cam/Springs, long tube headers. Everything else stock (new head gaskets, lifters, oil pan, etc).

Fresh 4L60e. 312whp on Dyno Dynamics (heartbreaker), ~400 HP on engine dyno. Total swap cost (including transmission): $2500

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SP8sAp47ozc

-5.3 swapped 69 Chevelle. BIG Cam/Springs, long tube headers. Everything else stock. (new head gaskets, lifters, oil pan, etc). TH350. Total swap cost: $2200

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E_w0HJqeGJk

-4.8 swapped 85 Cutlass. Cam, springs, long tubes, carb setup. Done on the quick/cheap. Total swap cost: $2000

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K1exMhzpBpA

alleykat
alleykat Reader
12/6/17 8:11 a.m.

In reply to AwesomeAuto :

Those are some kick ass projects. Thy all far exceed my current skills.

AwesomeAuto
AwesomeAuto New Reader
12/6/17 8:36 a.m.

Its really not that difficult to do an LS swap. The engines aren't nearly as big as people claim. Even the smaller 4.8 makes 300+ HP with nothing but a tune. Cam swaps on them to something still mild and streetable often pick up 50+ HP and can be done in 30 minutes with the engine out, and they take boost/nitrous like they were designed to. Parts are ABSURDLY abundant and CHEAP. Oil pans are made to fit everything. Mounts are made to fit everything. You can grab a 4.8/5.3 for $400 complete with harness, PCM, all accessories, etc if you keep a close enough eye on craigslist/facebook.

oldopelguy
oldopelguy UltraDork
12/6/17 8:44 a.m.

If you already own the Miata and it runs, you might want to consider a body swap instead of an engine swap and go Exocet.

Otherwise, $10k should buy you a decent LS1 Camaro organ donor if you need manual, or a 4.8L Express van if automatic is OK and leave you enough for a nice Jag XJS and the swap parts you actually need.

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
12/6/17 9:57 a.m.

AwesomeAuto, you're doing swaps on big cars that often came with a SBC. It's a different matter when you're dealing with small cars. Truck accessories and intakes  are not an option. Using stock trans and rear ends are not an option. The difference between an iron and aluminum block is significant when the car weighs 2300 lbs to start with. So you have to replace more things, the SBC commonality doesn't help at all and you have to use the more expensive parts.  

Furious_E
Furious_E SuperDork
12/6/17 10:11 a.m.

In reply to alleykat :

I don't think I was any further ahead than you are in terms of knowledge and experience prior to starting my project and I never really felt like I was in over my head. It seems intimidating looking at the big picture and scope of all the work as a whole, but break it down into a series smaller problems and focus on tackling them one at a time and it will become much more manageable. You're absolutely right, you have to learn somehow and the only way is to learn by doing. 

If you have any specific questions regarding the FC swap hit me up. I would link you to my build thread, but all the pics are stuck in Photobucket hell and I stopped updating it probably 60% of the way through as a result. I should really fix that sometime. 

AwesomeAuto
AwesomeAuto New Reader
12/6/17 10:21 a.m.
Keith Tanner said:

AwesomeAuto, you're doing swaps on big cars that often came with a SBC. It's a different matter when you're dealing with small cars. Truck accessories and intakes  are not an option. Using stock trans and rear ends are not an option. The difference between an iron and aluminum block is significant when the car weighs 2300 lbs to start with. So you have to replace more things, the SBC commonality doesn't help at all and you have to use the more expensive parts.  

You mean like this one?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NOKWxXv01yk

JBasham
JBasham Reader
12/6/17 10:23 a.m.

I did a V8 E36 and I recommend it.  I was looking to do it for half your budget so I did the Ford 302 instead of the LS.  Plus if God meant me to LS-swap track cars, He wouldn't have created the Corvette C5.

I didn't want another "momentum" car since I have an E21 eurochassis, and the E36 M3 is becoming a middle-of-the-pack car as more and more modern cars with bigger motors start filling the paddock.  I wanted something more in the category of my E92 M3 speed-wise, but a ton cheaper to run, and a bit more 4-N (nimble, neutral, and never numb).

Terry's experience with the LS swaps looks to me like it has led to a great set of swap hardware, backed by solid information on its longer-term use.  To me, that makes it worth what it costs.  There is a very strong likelihood the car will go together easily and work like it should over the years.

With my DIY Ford approach I bet I've spent maybe 15 "open practice" track days sorting out the car.  At $250-$300 a day for track time and consumables, that's a $4,000 nut.  In my mind, it was also $4,000 worth of fun, but it's not for everybody, and I bet you avoid it going with Vorshlag. 

Also - this is just my view, but . . . . I tried the swap with a stripped stock 325is chassis but I found the stock suspension to be a significant limit on the car's potential, and the brakes to be enough of a limit that I'm going to move up to E46 brakes.  I'm not 100% sure yet, but I think single-adjustable dampers and height-adjustable coil springs have been enough of a suspension upgrade to make the car work well.

Furious_E
Furious_E SuperDork
12/6/17 10:26 a.m.

In reply to Keith Tanner :

Beat me to it. F body oil pan, car intake manifold, accessories, custom headers, ect. can quickly eat up much of the difference and then some versus just starting with an f body block in the first place, and keeping the truck parts just isn't an option in any of the applications the OP is considering. Then you get into all the little adapter fittings and nickel and dime stuff needed just to be able to insert GM spec Tab A into Mazda shaped Slot B. Going manual trans is another huge cost driver, as the T56 is really the only reliable option in a lot of cases. 

goingnowherefast
goingnowherefast
12/6/17 11:51 a.m.

Have you thought about a 1.8L VVT swap into a 1994 Miata? They can be done, with quality and brand new parts for less than $2,000. With the correct parts and E85, it will make 150 whp all day with torque to boot. 150 whp in a NA8 Miata is just about right and it would make for a great (and bullitproof reliable) track/autox/street car that will be about as fast as a Fiesta ST or BRZ in a straight line. 

alleykat
alleykat Reader
12/6/17 12:51 p.m.
Furious_E said:

In reply to alleykat :

If you have any specific questions regarding the FC swap hit me up.

Thank you. Are you near Richmond, VA?

alleykat
alleykat Reader
12/6/17 12:53 p.m.

In reply to JBasham :

I would probably go for a set of TC Kline single adjustable if I keep the car. 

alleykat
alleykat Reader
12/6/17 1:02 p.m.
goingnowherefast said:

Have you thought about a 1.8L VVT swap into a 1994 Miata? They can be done, with quality and brand new parts for less than $2,000. With the correct parts and E85, it will make 150 whp all day with torque to boot. 150 whp in a NA8 Miata is just about right and it would make for a great (and bullitproof reliable) track/autox/street car that will be about as fast as a Fiesta ST or BRZ in a straight line. 

I have not really paid attention to Miatas built after 2000. I found the SuperMiata S2 rules regarding engine build. They cap output at 140 rwhp. I assume that is with pump gas. This is an interesting idea too. My old 90 with a 94 1.8 and light flywheel was pretty fun with probably 120 rwhp.

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