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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Greetings all...
Hey, I was looking at a 75 Elky today from underneath as I was trying to figure out a gear ratio on a 10 bolt (see my post in the Tranny Forum). Whilst under there, it was hard not to notice that this is a full frame car with all the goodies - Power steering and brakes, 4 link coil and air shock rear end, decent front end suspension...etc. One fella dropped a 56 4 door wagon on a Caprice frame which kinda inspired this crazy thinking. I think I can get this Elky for $300 bux. Gives a bit of wiggle room to play. Since I know anything is possible if you have a mega-budget, I'd like to know if this swap is rea$$onably possible on a mini-budget. (I can cut and weld) :sign0020: The wheelbase on the 75 Elky is 115". My 57 wagon is 117" (I think). Will these two inches make for a big problem? (no giggling, please). The width of the rig is about the same as my wagon.
Whaddya think?
Kep
 

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RIP: 10-27-2018
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3,279 Posts
Greetings all...
Hey, I was looking at a 75 Elky today from underneath as I was trying to figure out a gear ratio on a 10 bolt (see my post in the Tranny Forum). Whilst under there, it was hard not to notice that this is a full frame car with all the goodies - Power steering and brakes, 4 link coil and air shock rear end, decent front end suspension...etc. One fella dropped a 56 4 door wagon on a Caprice frame which kinda inspired this crazy thinking. I think I can get this Elky for $300 bux. Gives a bit of wiggle room to play. Since I know anything is possible if you have a mega-budget, I'd like to know if this swap is rea$$onably possible on a mini-budget. (I can cut and weld) :sign0020: The wheelbase on the 75 Elky is 115". My 57 wagon is 117" (I think). Will these two inches make for a big problem? (no giggling, please). The width of the rig is about the same as my wagon.
Whaddya think?
Kep
Sorry, but the wheel base of your 57 wagon is 115 inches. I don't know about the relatonship of the body to the kickup in back. (which is why most people do a stub) So its in the ballpark.

Of coarse its doable, but there is more to it than just wheelbase. The body mounts would have to be relocated (and probably fabricated) and for every change you make you create 3 more problems. Which is why I am always in awe of the guy who manages to shoehorn a caddy engine into his ambassador. :sign0020:
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Better to not go with whole frame - how bout front clip?

OK guys, appreciate the candid appraisal of this idea :)thumpdown:) :sign0020:

It was also hard for me to imagine this being anything but a really intensive and expensive proposition but not having done it, I needed some other thinking on it. Thanks for the reality check.

Now what about front clips? What are the favorites to pick up a more up to date front suspension? It seems like one would have to go to a Vette IFS to make a quantum jump from a tri five that is updated with disc brakes, tubular A arms, and 6XX pwr steering (or R&P). What am I missing if anything?

Kep
 

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Measure up a Firebird and or Camaro clip. I think they are a good match up to your frame and would give you good handeling. I forget which one it is but one of them has the steering box up front on the frame and not near the stock tri-5 location. good luck
 

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1956 chevy 210 del rey sedan
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I have an 80 camaro front clip in my car . it was there when i got the car . took some work to make very thing work costom steering ,motot mounts, radiator support ect but it works great and was cheap . :happy0030::happy0030:
 

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As hotrodg726 said, doing a clip or frame like this is going to require a fair amount of fabrication on the inner fenders, radiator support, etc.

A full frame swap like the Elky or Caprice is even more of a problem. It is a perimeter frame, the frame rails are going to be out near the rocker panels. If you set the body down on that kind of frame, the body will sit high and you'll actually be able to see the frame rails. This will look terrible, in addition to the extra height. I have seen some photos posted of this kind of thing, they're not pretty.

What you have to do to make this look right is channel the body over the frame. This will require new custom fabricated outer floors and new body mounts. There is also some question as to how the new floors would interface with the seats, etc. This will be a big fabrication job to do right, with many details to do.

The other thing about this is you don't get any performance benefit that you couldn't get with across the counter parts that are made for 55-57s.
 
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