All about 1950 and the life of my 1950 Chevy Styleline Sled


Some photos:

Engine not original but is a 1952 block.

I decoded the engine serial number and it is a 1952 216 engine made in Flint. I don’t see any remanufactured tags on it anyhwere so it is unknown if it is an original ’52 block that got transplanted somewhere in the past.

trans. crossmembers and related stuff
Width Year Model
56.50 1969-1977 Maverick 8″
57.00 1974-1978 Mustang II 8″
57.25 1957-1959 Ford, Ranchero, Station Wagon
57.25 1965-1966 Mustang
58.00 1966-1977 Bronco
58.00 1964-1965 Falcon
58.00 1977-1981 Granada/Versailles
58.50 1977-1981 Versailles
59.25 1967-1970 Mustang, Fairlane, Comet, Cougar
60.00 1967 Cougar
60.00 1958-1960 Edsel
61.00 1964-1971 Ford Full Size
61.00 1949-1951 Mercury
61.25 1957-1972 Ford F-100 Pickup
61.25 1960-1964 Ford Full Size
61.25 1971-1973 Mustang
61.25 1967-1973 Torino, Ranchero, Fairlane
63.00 1970-1979 Ranchero & Torino
63.00 1972-1979 Ford Full Size & Intermediate
63.50 1967 Fairlane (Coil Springs)
65.25 1973-1986 Ford F-150 Pickup
65.25 1978-1986 Bronco
65.25 1973-1986 Ford Van 3/4 Ton
68.00 1972 Ford Van 3/4 Ton
69.25 1977-1986 Ford E-150 Van

Width Year Model
54.25 1983-2004 Chevy S10 2WD, GMC S15 2WD
57.75 1962-1964 Chevy II/Nova
57.75 1965-1967 Chevy II/Nova
58.00 1978-1988 Chevy Malibu, Monte Carlo
59.50 1968-1982 Corvette
60.00 1955-1964 Chevy Car
60.00 1967-1969 Camaro
60.25 1968-1979 Chevy II/Nova
60.50 1984-1995 Corvette
60.50 1964-1967 Chevelle
62.00 1955-1959 Chevy Pickup
62.50 1968-1972 Chevelle
62.50 1970-1981 Camaro/Firebird

Width Year Model
55.60 1960-1976 7 1/4 A-body
55.60 1973-1976 8 1/4 A-body
55.60 1966-1972 8 3/4 A-body
55.60 All 8 3/4 A-body
56.00 1932-1934 All Mopars
57.40 1963-1972 7 1/4 A-body
58.54 All 8 1/4 F-body
58.54 All 8 1/4 M-body
58.54 All 8 1/4 J-body
59.00 1935-1936 All Mopars
59.14 1966-1970 9 3/4 B-body
59.20 1962-1970 8 3/4 B-body
60.00 1937-1948 All Mopars
60.70 All 8 3/4 E-body
60.70 All 9 3/4 E-body
62.00 All 8 1/4 B-body
62.00 1971-1974 8 3/4 B-body
62.00 All 9 1/4 B-body
63.40 All 8 1/4 C-body
63.40 1971-1974 8 3/4 B-body S.W.
63.40 All 9 1/4 C-body

More online advice for swaps…

Re: 1966 Nova 250 six-cylinder into a 51 Chevy, will it fit?

Get a rear axle and the drive shaft from any late ’60’s to mid ’90’s Nova, Camaro, Monte Carlo, Cutlass, etc. Call Chassis Engineering for rear springs, engine mounts, trans mount, and anything else you need for this conversion.

I have a 250 in my 50 Sedan along with a TH350. I used a S10 4X4 rear end and a Chassis Eng. spring kit. Their are pics on my photbucket page. Todd

I ran a 250 with a 700R4 and a 3:25 rear and the six didn’t like the overdrive with a torque converter lockout, but if you run a 350 and even 3:08 rear the six will like that, it runs the best between 2100 to 2500 rpm’s, best mileage etc.. Hope this is some help.

big fan of the t-5 235 combo. easier, cheaper, and better than auto. i think i spent 400 total, including a new driveshaft. i heard you can use 70’s gbody and be even cheaper.

Just in case you’re curious, power loss for various auto transmissions:

Powerglide 18 hp
TH350 36 hp
TH400 44 hp
Ford C6 55-60 hp
Ford C4 28 hp
Chrysler A904 25 hp
Chrysler 727 45 hp

Can you spare 36 HP! Check out Tom Langdon’s site for the T-5 swap to your motor. You be happy camper then.

I am restoring a 1951 Chev Skyline DeLuxe, and I am wanting to do a SB 350 motor swap. I found a 1978 Chev Nova 4 Door, I am wondering if anybody knows if the body of my 51 will fit the frame of the Nova? I am excited about it because the person that owns the Nova has put a 350 in it and I’m hopping that everything will fit. It just seems the easiest way to go if it will work… Any knowledge and advice is appreciated.

I clipped mine with Jaguar IFS, real easy and I have it so it bolts to the original frame. Installed a 305 chevy and 700r4, 78 Camaro rear end. Its cheap enough to do, the complete jaguar clip cost $175, my engine and trans came from a camaro that a friend totalled.

T-5 Tranny for 47-54 6cyl trucks

from stovebolt:

I see so many questions on installing S-10 T-5 transmissions into old trucks I thought I’d write down my experience and offer it as tech reference. Instructions are for installing in a Advance Design model truck (’47 to ’53) but I think would be very similar for other years. This is not a straight forward install, particularly the clutch — beginners may not want to tackle this swap.

The tricky parts of this swap are putting together a clutch package and finding the right ratio’s tranny for your purpose. These trannys don’t have a great reputation with muscle car enthusiasts who run them with V-8’s, but they seem to be adequate for a 6. Mine has worked fine for 15 K now behind a 235.

Application sources

The T-5 was used in many applications: from 5.0 Mustangs to Jeeps to Vegas. They have the poorest reputation from the first two applications. The one you want for your truck should be from a 2 WD S-10 as the shifter in these variants is located nearest the front. It’ll make you as happy as finding a great cheap car insurance deal. It will locate the shifter about seven inches behind the stock 4-speed in AD trucks. Other variants will locate the shifter in the bench seat. You can use another variant and change the shifter location by bolting the tail shaft housing from an S-10 to it. The shifter is part of this housing so it will be located in the S-10 position. This seems to be your only option if you want a close ratio box from a V-8.


The close ratio uses a 2.95 first gear and is best if you want performance set up. 2.95 is what the stock three-speed uses for first in the ’50. The info I got from the Chevy dealer shows 2 ratios available from ’85 to ’90 in the S-10 though there may be others: ML2 code in the glove box is 4.03 first and 2.37 second; ML3 is 3.76 first and 2.18 second.

I use an S-10 box with a 4.03 first. 4.03 is great for occasional steep driveways or creeping in a field but I usually start off in 2nd gear, which is 2.37. This will require some slipping the clutch at takeoff but works good for me. However, it will not give you a great launch if you want to do stoplight competition.

Another option is a box with 3.55 first gear. To me, this seems to be in-between the two and a compromise but I have heard some say they like it with a 3.73 rear. I prefer a 3.90 rear which will cruise 65 at 2100 RPM but will also pull hills OK in OD at 50. Also watch your OD ratios. I ended up with one early model box that had a .9 OD ratio. Hardly worth shifting into OD. Most are .72 but best to mark the input and output shafts and count revolutions.

An early box with mechanical speedo is a plus. I hear it’s very expensive to change from electronic to mechanical speedo drive. I find S-10 box’s plentiful for $50 to $100 at swaps, but the V-8 variants with 2.95 first seem to run more, around $200. Junkyards are very expensive places to get these. If time is on your side, shop around. Penny Saver-type papers are also a good source.

Before you install it…

After, or preferably before you purchase, it’s good to take a peak inside before you install. You can’t just pop a cover off to inspect these, you must pull off the tail shaft housing and shifter to get the top cover off. As long as you’re doing this you may as well at least re-shim the end play off the main shaft. They use tapered roller bearings and any end play will result in sloppy bearing clearance as in sideways play. One might consider bearings and synchro’s at this time also. Instructions are in Chilton’s at your local library. Also good time to change the speedo drive gear if necessary. You might not have to do this if you’re using a 3.73 or taller rear but I did with the 3.90. The S-10 used only one drive gear (9 teeth I think) but I found the Camaro T-5 had the right gear. I used GM P/N 14071731 (7 teeth drive gear) and 14077086 (driven gear) for my ratio of 3.90 and tire size of 28.8 inches. This will vary for different applications.

Also remove the C-clip from the rear of the output shaft. I don’t know the purpose of it but found it interfered when I used a particular drive shaft; could not slide it far enough forward to install. Some simple mods will need to be done to the tranny. Ream or drill the 4 mounting holes to open them up from the metric size to half inch. You will notice the input shaft, the pilot part of the shaft and the front bearing retainer are longer than the stock tranny’s. I cut about 1/4 of an inch off the pilot to match the stock one. This still leaves the overall length of the shaft a little long but was not a problem. You can drive the pilot bushing in further if it does interfere. I also cut the bearing retainer to match one from a stock tranny.

And now, the Tricky Part…

I found the tricky part was putting a clutch package together. Notice the splines are shorter than your stock tranny. They are also different size and number. S-10’s are likely 1-inch, 14 teeth, V-8 boxes are fine spline. Mine was 1-inch 14 so I used a 11-inch flywheel and an ’85 Astro Van 11- inch disc with a pressure plate from a small block. Used a throw out bearing from an SB but for a cast iron fork. Use the stock fork and clutch linkage. This setup put me within about .100 of running out of clutch splines on the input shaft. Enough to dis-engage but barely. I think if I ran out of splines I would have ground down the clutch disc hub a little. This is a gray area and I recommend setting everything up without a pressure plate installed so you can see what’s going on for clearance. I found some Astro Van discs very different from others. Any other make disc could work as long as it matches your input shaft and is the right thickness.

The gearbox is a couple inches longer than the stock one so you will need a shorter drive shaft. For my ’50 with the ’55 rear I found an Astro Van shaft fit perfectly with a Napa 348 cross over U joint for the rear. Again, this may vary for your application. Also needed a longer speedo cable. I’ve run the T-5’s and Saginaws with no trans mount several thousand miles with no problems, the trucks mount on the bell housing. It did however make me nervous with aluminum case sticking so far out in space so I fabricated a cross member from the original truck’s cross member. I cut and welded a recessed pocket in it, also cut and welded in tubes where the bolts pass through the vertical part of the cross. I bolted the mount to the tranny first and then slid the cross under it and bolted it on. Again perhaps not necessary but makes me feel better.

Fools the best of ’em

Most people at shows think I have a stock 4 speed. I used a 4-speed shifter welded onto the S-10 shifter. This does make for a long throw but I’ve heard of people reoperating the shifter pivot to address this. I acquired a Hurst after-market shifter with a short throw I plan on installing.

With the T-5 I can cruise 65 mph at 2100 rpm and still pull hills at 50mph without having to shift out of OD. I don’t hesitate to drive to a show or vacation hundreds of miles away. 65 to 70 is about all I feel comfortable doing in the truck and I still prefer a state highway to the interstate. Ratios are a gray area of this article. I make recommendations based on what I like and others may prefer different ratios depending on geographic location, engine, cam, how you plan on driving, towing, importance of gas mileage vs. performance.

Some color combo ideas

This is just like my car!


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