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Ben, if you want to build a new engine subframe, check out the Phase II in the Articles/Projects forum. I made mine out of 1" X 2" square tubing and it's fairly cheap in 10 foot lengths at Leaf Sales on Main Street in Chula Vista, just east of I-5.
 

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Old Opeler
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Engine Mounts

It may be an idea to adapt the mounts from the motor to your shortened Opel engine cradle - the Opel GT ones are a bit fragile and do fail with just the little old Opel motor. The Nissan ones should be designed to cope with the increased torque and HP from their motor.

It is a quite wide motor too!
 

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Stock?No way,cut N ,chop
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I would definality build a new engine cradle from scratch. After you get the drivetrain mocked up in the car you'll probaly find that it'll have to be modified so much to make work. On my 2.3 swap I also added 2 mounts that also tie the front crossmember to it. There's pics in the photo section to show what I did.
 

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Opeler
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Discussion Starter #24
Thanks guys, I'll definately pull the engine up into place in the car before I finalize my plan for the crossmember. I was a bit leary about using the original opel motor mounts. I wouldn't mind using the nissan mounts, as long as they will work. Would it be a problem if I turned them vertically instead of at an angle like they are supposed to be?
 

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Ben, if you build a new subframe, you can use the mounts as they are bolted to the engine, just adapt the vertical legs of the subframe to match them. If you want you can borrow the engine dolly I made up to set the engine/tranny on, it has both tranny mount holes and the inner holes for the subframe already in place. It's what I used to build the engne mount plates for my subframe.
 

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Opeler
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Discussion Starter #26
Thanks Ron, If I need the dolly I'll let you know. The problem with using the nissan mounts as they are is that with they are too wide for the vertical posts. The engine isn't too wide at that point just the mounts are. I think what I am going to do is remove the manifolds and the gear shifter from the SR20 then slide it under the car and lift it up into the place where I want it. From there I'll layout the crossmember and motor mount modifications and see what sheet metal needs to be changed to make room for the manifolds.
 

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Opeler
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Discussion Starter #31 (Edited)
Sheet metal: Round 1

Here are the first sheet metal cuts that I had to do to make room for the manifolds. I cut a pretty good chunk out of both sides. I figured out tonight that its a lot easier to get the motor past the radiator support if you give it a bit of a twist.(see the 4th pic.) Eventhough the nissan motor is essentially the same length as the opel I can't get it to slide down behind the front suspension. This is because the sump on the oil pan is at the front instead of the back. I think I may need to make a section of the wiper motor area removable so that I can drop the motor straight in instead of at an angle.

Time: 6 Sat, 2 Tues, 2 today
 

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Even though the nissan motor is essentially the same length as the opel I can't get it to slide down behind the front suspension. This is because the sump on the oil pan is at the front instead of the back. I think I may need to make a section of the wiper motor area removable so that I can drop the motor straight in instead of at an angle.

Time: 6 Sat, 2 Tues, 2 today
A couple if things I saw there Ben, You're gonna have to be careful around the steering shaft, engine torque could be a problem there. You may have to reroute your heater pipes too. Is it possible to put the front of the car on jack stands, and install the motor at a steeper angle, like I did on Willit?. It goes in at a 45+ degree angle, of course It's not as long, bu I had the tranny mounted when I installed it. Or is there another oil pan with the sump at the rear in that engine designation?
 

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Opeler
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Discussion Starter #33 (Edited)
I managed to get the engine down in behind the suspension crossmember. Ron, what you said about the oil pan got me thinking. I didn't change it but I pulled the small front section and removed the oil pickup. This bought me a couple of inches which was just enough to slide the engine back in and down. Once it is in there it fits pretty well front to back as well as vertically. I still have to hug the right side to be able to squeeze the turbo in on the driver's side. Right now what looks to be the biggest challenge is the alternator which is below the intake manifold. With the engine shifted to where the turbo will fit the alternator won't, and I can't cut the metal away because the frame section is what is in the way. I think I am going to try and relocate the alternator to the driver's side where the powersteering and airconditioning pumps used to be. There is a lot more room over there.

Time: 1
 

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Yeah Ben, I had to build new accessory mounting plates on Willit? because of that, too. I moved the alternator to the right side above the "frame" rail, and put my AC pump on the left (driver's) side. You may have a problem with the brake shaft/strut brace, unless you can put the alternator under what appears to be the thermostat housing. Building the accesory plates is where the engine dolly came in real handy, lining up the pulleys for the drive belt. Lotsa fun there. Looking good so far, keep the pics coming.
 

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Opeler
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Discussion Starter #35 (Edited)
Underneath the water outlet there is right where I was planning on putting the alternator. I think it will fit in well and still give clearance for the steering shaft. Well, I don't know if I'll get much time to work on the swap tomorrow but I'll definately be heading to the bone yard for some brake components; it's half off day at Ecology so I'm going to try and take advantage of it.

Ron, a while back I asked about the weight of the opel 1.9 and I think I remember you saying something about having shipped one recently. Who was your freight carrier?
 

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Ron, a while back I asked about the weight of the opel 1.9 and I think I remember you saying something about having shipped one recently. Who was your freight carrier?
Sorry, Ben, that wasn't me. My engine and tranny was shipped to me, one from Florida and the other from Kentucky. The tranny came by either UPS or FedEx, I can't remember which. The engine was shipped by a commercial carrier and came in an 18 wheeler to the house. Maybe someone on the site can help.
 

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Discussion Starter #38
Well I lifted the engine back out tonight and did a little more trimming. I also removed the alternator bracket from the right side and then slid the motor back in again. It took me a while to get it leveled out and positioned where I wanted it. Next I tried installing the exhaust manifold and turbo to test how I was doing on the driver's side. Getting that in was a bit tricky. I ended up unbolting the turbo from the manifold and setting it down in the hole first and then putting the manifold on and bolting the turbo back up to the manifold once it. I also had to remove the wastegate actuator from the turbo because the rod was hitting the steering shaft. I think I need to position the engine 1/2 -1" more to the right and move it down and back about the same amount. Next time I work on it I am going to pull the engine and make some adjustments on the right side. Then put it back in and this time slide the transmission in to see how that lines up and how much space there is for working on the bell house bolts.

Question: How much clearance do I need around the engine to accomodate for the torque reaction of the motor?

Time: 3
 

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Ben, from what I see in the pics, you're gonna have some fun with the steering column and gas pedal. Maybe some u-joints added to the column to clear the exhaust and relocate the column. As for torque action and re-action, I used a crowbar on Willit?'s engine to see how far the engine would move with the whole assembly installed and torqued down. With new engine mounts, the car would move before the engine did, so all I needed was about 1/2" clearance all the way around. During decell or rapid off-throttle the engine will torque to the left just a bit, verses torquing to the right under acceleration. HTH.
 
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