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Old 05-24-2008, 07:30 AM
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54 subframe swap

i have a 54 bel air 4 door just need a little help on cutting my frame and putting a camaro frame back.do i need to just get the suspension out from under my frame and roll the camaro frame under it and try to get the right wheel base and mark where i want to cut and join both frames.or is there another way that is easier.also im putting camaro rear in it to would yall run leafs in rear or the coil spring set up.thanks chris
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Old 05-24-2008, 07:38 AM
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set your frame on the camaro and clamp. adjust wheel base and weld it up. dont slide the 54 into the camaro. the only level place on the camaro is the legs that slide under the body.
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Old 05-24-2008, 07:59 AM
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54frameswap

so do i just cut my frame behind the cross member and get that out of the way and slide the camaro subframe under and adjust and weld. its not going to stick down and look bad that way is it. also if done that way do i need to plate the inside of frame just for strength
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Old 05-24-2008, 08:18 AM
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this is the safest way to do it. if you study the clip the 2 sides dont match. both frame rails are different. i've done many of them with no trouble. i've also cut off clips that were cut and butt so we could redo them right. i have a template to mark the cut like the 56 big window at http://www.streetrodding.com/index.c...r.view/id/1393.

or you can do it like this one.
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Old 05-24-2008, 08:40 AM
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54swap

wow the pics were great. if you sit the frame on top of the other do you split the difference of the frames. what i mean is the 54 frame is narrow and the camaro is wider. when you sit the 54 on top do you just adjust the difference in the width.also got any ideas of the front as for putting back the bumper mounts or just making new ones.
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Old 05-24-2008, 08:54 AM
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center it. you will need to put a new core support mount in. i use a piece of 1x3 . bumpers are just fabbing new mounts. probably the hardest part. take the shocks out and make a fake shock out of 5/8 all thread with a piece from an old shock on bottom. i take the springs out. you can set it at ride hight with the all thread. one nut washer under and one on top. i clamp it and adjust with a heavy hammer. i also set the front end back on to center the wheels.
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Old 05-24-2008, 09:15 AM
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54swap

you said use the all thread to set ride height are you cutting the front springs to make your ride height or is there another way for that. what do i cut first do i cut just behind the old crossmember just to get it out of the way and then go from there measuring and clamping
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Old 05-24-2008, 10:17 AM
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the all thread just supports it because the springs are not there. you can adjust it to have the lower aframes level . cutting springs is never a good idea period. measure back from axle center on the clip to the drop to level. i think it is around 24 in or so. then back from axle center on your frame .that is where you cut your frame . when your done you can piece in the wedge in the front.
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Old 05-24-2008, 12:31 PM
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54 subframe swap

in the pics you have did you cut the frame in front of the first mount next to the firewall or is that the next one. did you cut out all the old trans mounts and all the junk in the way.
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Old 05-24-2008, 12:40 PM
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where you cut your frame is not important as long as it is behind the clip rise. you are going to put the piece back in anyway.
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Old 05-24-2008, 08:08 PM
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54 subframe swap

well i cut the frame and got it mocked back up to the camaro sub frame and it is looking pretty good. i made several measurements from several areas to make sure we were square and straight. everything checks about the same do you have any more pics of the frames that is pretty helpful.did you take off any of the subframe after you got it welded up. camaro frame that is were it sticks out on the inside did you cut that down and make it look like it blends in or did you leave that.thanks
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Old 05-25-2008, 06:02 AM
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it's up to you . the more area that the 2 frames mate the stronger. post a pic of what you have. remember dont go welding until you set the front sheet metal on and get all your mounts made. cutting a spot weld is one thing but if you stitch it up it will be hell to move. i do all the fab work then take it apart and finish welding.
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Old 05-25-2008, 08:02 AM
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54 subframe swap

shine you have been some great help for me.i havent welded anything yet i just have it all clamped up i still have to cut the filler pieces to finish out the frame.i was just wandering though if it is square from corner to corner and wheel base is 115 on both sides we should be right.the 54 frame has alot of bend to it while the camaro is pretty much straight. think ill make me some pieces to stiffin it up a little also i guess we are going to do a 4 link in the rear with a camaro rear end. guess ill coil spring it for now id like air bags but on a budget.
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Old 05-25-2008, 08:44 AM
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i never trust wheel base measurements. i set the front end on every time. the trans cross member will help stiffen it up. i would stick to leaf springs if it is going to be a driver. 4 bars are for 1/4 mile at a time. those joints wear out pretty fast on the street.
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Old 05-26-2008, 09:46 AM
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54subframeswap

shine i was checking out your photo journals and i seen you cut down that car. how hard is it to chop a top on a four door car.also im gonna get you some pics of my progress on my frame and let you check it out and make sure im on the right path.its all looking good and im going to get my front end on and check that out before i start welding we just have it all clamped up now.thanks alot for all the info so far its been very helpful.
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