Bill Gardner's

1981 Chevy Bus


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21 December 2005

From Bill:

           I stumbled onto your page while doing research on a project. I found Rusty Hughes' Baby Bus (1957 Chevy Bus) and I thought this guy might have some information that would help me.

           I have an old bus that I’m trying to put a turbo 400 in. Here is a link to some pics. I wondered if Hughes' bus had a small or big block in it? Did it have a standard tranny in it? I have a standard tranny and I am having problems figuring out just how I’m going to mount the new tranny. The engine has a mount at the very front, and the tranny has one at the bell housing.

           The problem is you can’t use the front of a 400 to mount anything to. My options are these as far as I can see:

  1. Put a motor plate between the engine and tranny and then build a crossmember for the rear of the tranny.
  2. Install regular motor mounts at the middle of the engine, then the crossmember at the back of the tranny.

           Other problems are driveshaft connection and parking brake, but I don’t think those will be too hard to figure out. If anyone has dealt with these or other problems, I’d love to hear about them. I know I will need to put a big cooler on it and a tranny temperature gauge to make sure it’s not going to get too hot. I have been told everything from “don’t even think about attempting it” to “I have a similar setup and it works great.” I just haven’t found someone with the exact same setup. It looks like Hughes' is very close. And maybe there are others ??

           Thank you in advance for any information you might be able to give me. ANY advice would be great.

Bill Gardner
Stillwater, Oklahoma



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