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Old 08-24-2012, 12:38 PM
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1980 Chevy Monza

Hey Everyone,I'm 19 really big into working on cars but i dont have the knowledge or the people around to show me anything. I recently bought a 1980 Chevy monza with the stock 151 L4 its a 5 speed manual and i am wanting more horsepower but also decent MPG.I am thinking about buying a 305 but i know a 305 and 350 are the same size. But i still want decent MPG. I need to get it running and drive it back to wisconsin where i live. the car is in WA. I have about 3,000 saved up but i am not going to fix it til i have atleast 6,000-7,000. I have to be able to drive it from WA to my home in WI. its been sitting for the past 5-7 years im not worried about the body and the interior I have that taken care of. It needs new shocks, trany is still good but should i get a newer or rebuilt one? rear end is good at this moment idk what the gear ratio is on it. I want to keep it a manual. if i have anymore questions I'll let ya know. Thanks

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Last edited by Hank_The_Tank15; 08-24-2012 at 12:55 PM. Reason: needed more info on car
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Old 08-24-2012, 01:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hank_The_Tank15 View Post
Hey Everyone,I'm 19 really big into working on cars but i dont have the knowledge or the people around to show me anything. I recently bought a 1980 Chevy monza with the stock 151 L4 its a 5 speed manual and i am wanting more horsepower but also decent MPG.I am thinking about buying a 305 but i know a 305 and 350 are the same size. But i still want decent MPG. I need to get it running and drive it back to wisconsin where i live. the car is in WA. I have about 3,000 saved up but i am not going to fix it til i have atleast 6,000-7,000. I have to be able to drive it from WA to my home in WI. its been sitting for the past 5-7 years im not worried about the body and the interior I have that taken care of. It needs new shocks, trany is still good but should i get a newer or rebuilt one? rear end is good at this moment idk what the gear ratio is on it. I want to keep it a manual. if i have anymore questions I'll let ya know. Thanks
The 5 speed would not be native; an original 1980 with a stick would be the Saginaw 4 speed. The rear axle is the 7.5 inch also used in the S10 so within reason it will tolerate a V8. A V8 option with a 262 (4.3L) inch SBC was available starting in 1975. This is the same external casting as the 305 and 350 so either can be fitted using factory parts. In this light car a T5, if that's what it has, or the OEM Saginaw 4 speed will survive if you don't make burn out starts a regular thing.

This is a well travelled path go see this link GM H-Body V8 Conversion FAQ: By Bob Gumm

Keep in mind that the V8 adds almost 300 pounds on the front end. This isn't a great handling car to start with it doesn't like power added while turning. So you've got to be careful with it as it can get out of control faster than your heart can get to its next beat. It takes a lot of work to get this thing balanced up with weight distribution, suspension and brake mods to handle the V8 swap. The front end can benefit a lot by using an aluminum intake and heads, headers instead of manifolds. This can take 100 pounds off the nose. If it has AC get rid of it that take another 50 pounds off. Lower the suspension about 1.5 inches, use high pressure shocks, install beefy anti-sway bars front and rear, run the fattest wheel and tire that will fit.

Bogie
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Old 08-24-2012, 02:10 PM
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Yeah my parents had one before and i loved it but it is prettty heavy it had a 305 v8 in it but everything else as far as i know was stock.. I'm not planning on goin crazy with this ca I am just wanting enough muscle in it to take it to the track on the weekends and have a little fun in town. How much would you think all of this woujld cost. I can do this in stages. But first i have to get it home. which is about 2,000 miles away in washington state. Just found out that the engine is the 151 L4 staright with a metal block in it. what i am thinking aboutdoingis just fixing that engine and then bring it back home to WI then grab the V8 but idk if i would do the V8 for gas reasons i might do a V6 but if i did what kind of V6 would you prefer?

Last edited by Hank_The_Tank15; 08-24-2012 at 02:34 PM. Reason: more info
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Old 08-24-2012, 02:43 PM
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chevy monza

Im rebuilding my 151 L4 it has a metal block in it everything else is stock. just needing some pointer on what should be added to it for performance not needing alot at this moment just enough to get me from Washington State to Wisconsin. It has a 4 speed manual transmission. should i do anything to the suspension or shocks? I am replacing brake cylinders and all that stuff. but needing to know what else i should at to it. Im new to mechanics but i have been around it all my life but never had the people to show what to do with it. thanks for the comments and wisdom you are sharing with me.
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Old 08-24-2012, 02:50 PM
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If the 4 cylinder is running decent, I would tune it up, change the oil and drive it home....starting to mess with v8s etc when you need the car to travel is going to get you in over your head.
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Old 08-24-2012, 02:55 PM
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its not running the engine has been sitting for a couple years. the engine is in good condition but needs to be rebuilt because of sitting for soo long. the V8 isfor when i get it back home. that'll be my next project after i get it home.
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Old 08-24-2012, 02:57 PM
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Interesting footnote; the Monza was slated at one time to have a Wankel engine in the chassis.

There are plenty of hop up parts around for those 4cyl's. They were used in boats, mini sprints etc. I believe there was also an SCCA class that the Monza raced in and probably in Pony Stocks alongside the Pinto.

V8 Monzas are far more popular; and while a lot of the engine hop ups won't help, perhaps looking at the suspension upgrades used then for something like a "DeKon Phase 1" Lee Dykstra and Horst Kwetch (De Kon) built some killer cars in the late 70s; much like todays KaTech and Lingenfelter LeMans cars.

Cool project, post pics
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Old 08-24-2012, 03:08 PM
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Pics will come dont worry about that My first goal is getting it home which hopefully will be within the next few months. the body has some damage to it. but i can take care of that no problem. when i get more info on engine specs, transmission, rear end stuff i'll be sure to put it on here right away. thanks.
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Old 08-24-2012, 03:15 PM
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Just because an engine has been sitting doesnt necessarily mean it needs to be rebuilt...Do a compression test, that will tell you basically what condition it is in....Might just need plugs, cap, wires, carb rebuilt etc
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Old 08-24-2012, 03:29 PM
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sounds good. thanks for the help. I'llhavemy grandpa look at it for me when he has the chance. The car is in WA and i am in WI and when i have enough money to put it all back together i'll fly out there but I am going to be buying the parts as i have the money for them so when i get there all the pasrtsfor the car will be there. Just a little idea of what it looks like its the hatchback monza but the front grill and bumper is from a 86,87 camora with single head lights on either side and the back end has a 80's rear spoiler to square the back end up. its yellow but it will be repainted i have no idea of what i will paint it but it'll be lookin good.

Should I worry about any type of air intake system for it right now or wait until i put the V8 in it? we have to redo the exhaust so i will fix that but wont go crazy on it. just so it sounds good and helps the performance a lil.
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Old 08-24-2012, 05:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hank_The_Tank15 View Post
sounds good. thanks for the help. I'llhavemy grandpa look at it for me when he has the chance. The car is in WA and i am in WI and when i have enough money to put it all back together i'll fly out there but I am going to be buying the parts as i have the money for them so when i get there all the pasrtsfor the car will be there. Just a little idea of what it looks like its the hatchback monza but the front grill and bumper is from a 86,87 camora with single head lights on either side and the back end has a 80's rear spoiler to square the back end up. its yellow but it will be repainted i have no idea of what i will paint it but it'll be lookin good.

Should I worry about any type of air intake system for it right now or wait until i put the V8 in it? we have to redo the exhaust so i will fix that but wont go crazy on it. just so it sounds good and helps the performance a lil.
If you're doing a swap later, spend absolutely bare minimum now to run the 4 banger.
The parts you would install for the small motor will be useless later after installing the v8.
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Old 08-24-2012, 05:10 PM
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right but i am going to have to drive it for a year or two before i have the money to do the swap. Unless I get a better paying job but i dont think that will happen anytime soon. I am still going to college at the moment and paying out of pocket. I am plannin on puttin about 4-5G's in it right now. its in bad shape but 5G doesnt go a long way no adays
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Old 08-24-2012, 09:46 PM
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if it was me

I would look for a V8 car since it would have all the upgrade parts and pieces. V 8 cars usually have bigger brakes, suspension pieces. I used monza brackets for something when I did an engine swap PS, or alt or something for clearance , keep your DD stock,
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Old 08-24-2012, 10:11 PM
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v-6 vega would be a compromise for economy and power.I wonder if a cobalt 4 cyl could be swapped in there? east west conversions for the northstar are popular.If a cobalt 2.2 could be put in there then ,you would get great mileage and decent power
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Old 08-24-2012, 10:24 PM
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Have you checked into having the car shipped to you. Might not be as expensive as you think, plus no waste of time and money fixing the 4 banger just to swap it out later.

My choice, for a well balanced car, would be a Buick V6, with the 86-87 Grand National Turbo and EFI, great power, very good mpg potential.

Dont forget to reinforce the chassis with subframe connectors, anything more than a stock 305 will start to twist the chassis with any kind of spirited driving.
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