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361 to LA 318
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westwoodblue
Posted 2019-01-25 4:45 PM (#577375)
Subject: 361 to LA 318


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Will an later LA series bolt into a 57-59 in place of a 361? Are there any later transmissions that will fit without too much hassle?
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Mopar1
Posted 2019-01-25 6:56 PM (#577380 - in reply to #577375)
Subject: Re: 361 to LA 318



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No bell patterns are different bb vs sb, , + crankflange change 61 vs 62
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Mopar1
Posted 2019-01-25 10:51 PM (#577385 - in reply to #577380)
Subject: Re: 361 to LA 318



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On an LA use a Sb 904 or 727 & something like a Z Gate shifter
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Stroller
Posted 2019-01-26 10:17 AM (#577399 - in reply to #577375)
Subject: Re: 361 to LA 318


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Sure it will fit with lots of work and parts conversions no problem at all. My '60 Fury was born with a poly engine. Now it is set up for a 383-440. Work, re fit and parts, more parts and then a few more parts and re fitting.
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58coupe
Posted 2019-01-26 12:14 PM (#577407 - in reply to #577375)
Subject: Re: 361 to LA 318



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If you use the front motor mounts for a 57-59 poly engine (if you can find them in good shape) these will bolt right up to the LA318 and the engine will fit fine, you may have to watch for oil pan and exhaust manifold clearance. As already mentioned, the problem is you need to use a transmission that will bolt to the newer engine and fabricate the trans. mount. You will also have to have a driveshaft made to work with this trans. There is also the problem of how to shift the newer trans. If none of these issues scare you off then go for it.
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westwoodblue
Posted 2019-01-26 5:17 PM (#577420 - in reply to #577375)
Subject: Re: 361 to LA 318


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Thank you all very much, its definitely scary considering the amount of sh-t that could go wrong. I see a lot of 318s for sale, not many 383s.
Came to mind first from the 318 mileage thread. I'm not sure a 383 vs a 318 would be better for mileage, nobody builds one to save the $
at the pump. I can make one look new and am versed well enough in the detailing/body side, but aside from changing the oil I'm as dumb as
they come knowing engines. Are the 383 and the 318 based on the same series? If the poly mounts work for the poly 318 and la, does that
mean the 361/383/440 mounts are all the same?

I like driving mine everywhere everyday regardless of weather/time of year, and while the 361 in it does decent for the year theres way too many problems
to just say hell with it and ignore it without killing it. It wasn't quite as bad when I started but it leaks like a sieve. Would probably leak less if I drove it with
the drain plug out of it. At the very least I have to pull the motor and put in new gaskets, but I'm not too excited about what I think I'll see with the heads off

So then there's the question of pissing in the wind with what I've got, or to go ahead and take the time/effort to put in something that is a little easier on the
wallet. Itll never be a prius (thank god) but I can't bring myself to throw more money at an aged mill that will still only pull 20 mpg. I already don't have the
money for a full rebuild or the resources to go that route myself. With the miles I'm told on the last, it shouldn't need it, but all the issues show otherwise

There are probably better suited threads dedicated to this, but if one were building the ideal economy fin car, what would you do? Theres another thread on
this I posted in a while back but I won't waste everyone's time in digging it up. I can weld and fabricate, and I'm not opposed to modifying things long as it's
an improvement. I know from the last thread, a taller gear is good. Which block is the best for economy, not too small, not too big? My only hookups are
budget (more time than money), and the pushbuttons. I would really prefer to keep them, but I don't figure there's any way with a newer transmission
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58coupe
Posted 2019-01-26 8:57 PM (#577426 - in reply to #577375)
Subject: Re: 361 to LA 318



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Please tell us exactly what you have. If you have a 361 that has an overhaul in the past but just leaks oil, then the cheapest way is just fix the leaks. They are good engines and used in a lot of cars but are very different from the polys or the La series. The 2 most common places to leak are the valve cover gaskets (easy fix) or rear main seal (harder to fix). If your transmission is working good there is no reason to change it.
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1960fury
Posted 2019-01-27 9:06 AM (#577444 - in reply to #577426)
Subject: Re: 361 to LA 318



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58coupe - 2019-01-26 8:57 PM

Please tell us exactly what you have. If you have a 361 that has an overhaul in the past but just leaks oil, then the cheapest way is just fix the leaks. They are good engines and used in a lot of cars but are very different from the polys or the La series. The 2 most common places to leak are the valve cover gaskets (easy fix) or rear main seal (harder to fix). If your transmission is working good there is no reason to change it.



I second that! Except, the 361s are not good engines, they are EXCELLENT engines. In my book the low deck Mopar big block is the best engine ever put in a regular production car.
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westwoodblue
Posted 2019-01-27 10:03 AM (#577446 - in reply to #577426)
Subject: Re: 361 to LA 318


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58coupe - 2019-01-26 8:57 PM

Please tell us exactly what you have. If you have a 361 that has an overhaul in the past but just leaks oil, then the cheapest way is just fix the leaks. They are good engines and used in a lot of cars but are very different from the polys or the La series. The 2 most common places to leak are the valve cover gaskets (easy fix) or rear main seal (harder to fix). If your transmission is working good there is no reason to change it.


The head gaskets are leaking some but its not as bad as the rear main. When i got it I changed out the oil pan, prepped and cleaned, new gasket on it, so no leaks there. Although i checked the threads and cleaned the drain plug, cleaned and siliconed it still leaks there. The engine leaks aren't as bad as the transmission

ANY time the car is started and then turned off, the transmission dumps all the fluid out, every single time, regardless of weather, how long its been run or how hot. Once in a blue moon it will dump less, less still being 1 or 2 quarts, but in order to drive the car you have to have transmission fluid with to put in it. I cant even take it to the grocery store without putting a fifty aside just for more trans fluid. It was the main reason I had to pull it off the road, not to mention other problems springing up. So I'm hoping to get most of it ironed out in one go

I was told the motor was rebuilt in the late 80s/90s, and the transmission in the early 2000s. Im told theres a valve in the transmission that needs adjusted or replaced which determines when the car is running/not
Reason i wanted to change the tranny is from my experience, more gears = better mileage, if 3 is okay, 4 is good, 5+ even better. If the transmission could be easily fixed and be made into a driver again, I would be more interested in keeping it. It doesnt make sense to me (not like any transmission work is cheap) why the valve wasnt adjusted/replaced then?
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westwoodblue
Posted 2019-01-27 10:10 AM (#577447 - in reply to #577444)
Subject: Re: 361 to LA 318


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1960fury - 2019-01-27 9:06 AM

58coupe - 2019-01-26 8:57 PM

Please tell us exactly what you have. If you have a 361 that has an overhaul in the past but just leaks oil, then the cheapest way is just fix the leaks. They are good engines and used in a lot of cars but are very different from the polys or the La series. The 2 most common places to leak are the valve cover gaskets (easy fix) or rear main seal (harder to fix). If your transmission is working good there is no reason to change it.



I second that! Except, the 361s are not good engines, they are EXCELLENT engines. In my book the low deck Mopar big block is the best engine ever put in a regular production car.


I like the engine a lot, seems to move it around good enough, aside from leaks (age), its real cheap to run. You drive yours a lot, what are some other mods you've done that have increased mpg? You got a 4 spd in yours? Im just at a standstill, I don't mind redoing work when its got time on it, but my goal is to have everything in line mechanical wise and all tidied up/rustproofed by summer
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westwoodblue
Posted 2019-01-27 10:15 AM (#577449 - in reply to #577375)
Subject: Re: 361 to LA 318


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Sorry DUH its a 361, shoulda said that first
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Stroller
Posted 2019-01-27 12:15 PM (#577455 - in reply to #577375)
Subject: Re: 361 to LA 318


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What kind of mileage are seeking? I have 354 Hemi and it gets close to 25 on the highway If I'm not smashing the gas pedal simply because it will do it. Are you talking about just dropping in a running 318 or having it built first? A 318 backed up by a manual shift can get decent mileage so to say. But again what kind of mileage are you talking? My '89 Lemans gets unreal mileage but it doesn't wiegh anything, it's a stick shift and a tiny 4 popper. The 361 is an amazing engine to say the least. I'd have it fixed and make sure the transmission is up to task. A good tune with a well working carb will give good results. If your wanting 20+ mpg around town it is not going to happen, unless the engine is up to it. Even a minor leaking head gasket is problem.

Putting the 383 in my '60 was no light task and it still is not done. It changed from the radiator to the rear tires and it was not done for economy in any sense.
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1960fury
Posted 2019-01-27 3:59 PM (#577466 - in reply to #577447)
Subject: Re: 361 to LA 318



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westwoodblue - 2019-01-27 10:10 AM

1960fury - 2019-01-27 9:06 AM

58coupe - 2019-01-26 8:57 PM

Please tell us exactly what you have. If you have a 361 that has an overhaul in the past but just leaks oil, then the cheapest way is just fix the leaks. They are good engines and used in a lot of cars but are very different from the polys or the La series. The 2 most common places to leak are the valve cover gaskets (easy fix) or rear main seal (harder to fix). If your transmission is working good there is no reason to change it.



I second that! Except, the 361s are not good engines, they are EXCELLENT engines. In my book the low deck Mopar big block is the best engine ever put in a regular production car.


I like the engine a lot, seems to move it around good enough, aside from leaks (age), its real cheap to run. You drive yours a lot, what are some other mods you've done that have increased mpg? You got a 4 spd in yours? Im just at a standstill, I don't mind redoing work when its got time on it, but my goal is to have everything in line mechanical wise and all tidied up/rustproofed by summer


Aside from drastically reducing weight from all the rotating parts (from pulleys to wheels) with lightening or changing to aluminum and titanium parts, the usual hot rod mods, like intake manifold, cold/ram air, carb, windage tray, headers, exhaust, etc. It responded very, very well to these relatively inexpensive mods (inexpensive except for the Wilwood brakes). It is unbelievable what one can easily do with a cheap, almost 60 year old car, to make it run with the best of new cars, 10 times as expensive.
I'm running a stock 61 Imperial Torqueflite that does not quite perform as well as the OE HP T-flite behind the Golden Commando.
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Apollo 61
Posted 2019-01-27 9:38 PM (#577478 - in reply to #577466)
Subject: Re: 361 to LA 318



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Are differences between 61 413 imperial tflights and 61 ply 361 tflights ?
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1960fury
Posted 2019-01-28 9:21 AM (#577496 - in reply to #577478)
Subject: Re: 361 to LA 318



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Apollo 61 - 2019-01-27 9:38 PM

Are differences between 61 413 imperial tflights and 61 ply 361 tflights ?


Yes, if the engines were the HP versions, like Golden Commandos or 300s, regardless of cubic inches. The HP versions had at least different governors for higher shift points at wot.
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1960fury
Posted 2019-01-28 9:30 AM (#577498 - in reply to #577375)
Subject: Re: 361 to LA 318



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Location: northern germany
I once tuned and modified a high mileage low compression 361 in a 61 Desoto coupe, not quite as much as my 383, still with stock ex manifolds. That car went easily to 133 mph in no time at all and smoked cars that should have been faster (60s 327 Impala, etc). Sold the car to my ex girlfriend years ago and it still performs flawlessly. Loved the car.
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westwoodblue
Posted 2019-02-01 1:52 AM (#577685 - in reply to #577455)
Subject: Re: 361 to LA 318


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Stroller - 2019-01-27 12:15 PM

What kind of mileage are seeking? I have 354 Hemi and it gets close to 25 on the highway If I'm not smashing the gas pedal simply because it will do it. Are you talking about just dropping in a running 318 or having it built first? A 318 backed up by a manual shift can get decent mileage so to say. But again what kind of mileage are you talking? My '89 Lemans gets unreal mileage but it doesn't wiegh anything, it's a stick shift and a tiny 4 popper. The 361 is an amazing engine to say the least. I'd have it fixed and make sure the transmission is up to task. A good tune with a well working carb will give good results. If your wanting 20+ mpg around town it is not going to happen, unless the engine is up to it. Even a minor leaking head gasket is problem.

Putting the 383 in my '60 was no light task and it still is not done. It changed from the radiator to the rear tires and it was not done for economy in any sense.


25-30 was the range i was seeking, but 20-25 is probably more realistic keeping it original. though the motor leaks, the transmission is the achilles heel of it. It got so bad that it was undrivable

1960fury - 2019-01-27 9:06 AM

Aside from drastically reducing weight from all the rotating parts (from pulleys to wheels) with lightening or changing to aluminum and titanium parts, the usual hot rod mods, like intake manifold, cold/ram air, carb, windage tray, headers, exhaust, etc. It responded very, very well to these relatively inexpensive mods (inexpensive except for the Wilwood brakes). It is unbelievable what one can easily do with a cheap, almost 60 year old car, to make it run with the best of new cars, 10 times as expensive.
I'm running a stock 61 Imperial Torqueflite that does not quite perform as well as the OE HP T-flite behind the Golden Commando.


smaller mods like that are more in line with my budget and skillset I think than trying to do a full swap, if they work that well I think that's the best option for me
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Stroller
Posted 2019-02-03 10:25 AM (#577753 - in reply to #577375)
Subject: Re: 361 to LA 318


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Have you ever put your car on scales? My '56 probably tilts close to 6,000 lbs. Chrysler stopped making the big blocks and they were pretty much gone by what '77-78? They were replaced by the small blocks 318-360's. Way back when mileage was not the key issue of production cars. Believe I get the want for 25-30 mpg but your fighting wieght. What drives me nuts is when people buy under powered vehicles for mileage and use them for what the higher powered are designed to do. The rebirth of the ram charger was put off because it could not meet the mpg requirements. When I build an engine I build it for what I expect it to do.
For example I built a 360 and only had it bored .020 and went back with the dished pistons. I used a set of J-heads with the .180 valves not the 2.02. Used a mopar performance cam and springs with a lift of 168-172, mopar engines don't really use a center line like ford's and gm's. I degreed the cam shaft 4 degree before TDC so it develops low end torque better and the cam comes to life a little sooner, rather than around 2,500 rpm's. I stuck a vacum secondary Holley 600 on a stock cast iron intake. Non emission exhaust manifolds w/ 2" pipes and glass packs. Rebuilt transmission and went back w/ 5 disk forward clutch and valve body rebuilt so the fluid flows in park with improved more positive shifts. The rear end is a 354 sure grip limited slip.
This is not a hot rod. But it has the power dodge could have put in it now. Stock new it was stated 195hp and maybe 250 ft lbs of torque. This is a full sized 1/2T pick up with dual tanks. Now the hp is well over 300. I built it to haul and tow. Gas milage needs the extra tank.
It is nice to say or dream of 20-25mpg with an old V-8 and automatic even with a 400 cfm 2 barrel. Thing is first find a machine shop and talk to them letting them know what you want to do. Question is are you willing to give up power in echange for more economy.

I agree with have your engine and trans rebuilt, pay some attention to the rear end and make sure everything is working as it should. A well built engine with quality components to make it work the way it should will deliver expected results.
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