My 81 Malibu

Bruno

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Jan 31, 2021
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I have a 1981 Malibu coupe. Purchased the car 15 years ago from an elderly woman. It had factory air, 75k on the odometer and radio delete. The car ran great but was hideous to look at it. I had it painted black from the gross factory brown and also I did some minor work to it. My so wanted the car and my generous nature gave it up. Needless to say this didn’t work out well for the car. I got the car back last year and now looking to put a recently acquired 454 I. It. Looking for info on front suspension needs because of the difference in weight from a V6 to a big block, most importantly what headers ? Happy to join the team and any information is much appreciated!!

Bruno
 

melloelky

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Jul 1, 2009
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welcome Bruno.there's a few variables with engine weight.a lot of it comes down to what you're intending to do with the car.race,cruise,etc etc, a/c no a/c,steel hood/glass one,cage,no cage,interior or no interior, the list goes on.cast heads,intake on the v6 vs aluminum headed,intake on the big block. the stock v6 to stock bbc difference is under 300 lbs.what's the plan with it?
 

Bruno

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Jan 31, 2021
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welcome Bruno.there's a few variables with engine weight.a lot of it comes down to what you're intending to do with the car.race,cruise,etc etc, a/c no a/c,steel hood/glass one,cage,no cage,interior or no interior, the list goes on.cast heads,intake on the v6 vs aluminum headed,intake on the big block. the stock v6 to stock bbc difference is under 300 lbs.what's the plan with it?
Only cruising, I’m doing away with the A/C. The 454 has a mild street cam no upgrades planned for performance at this time on the motor. Car will remain a solid steel street piece. Obviously no cage. Seems that weight isn’t much of a factor based on what you stated. What about headers, you have a recommendation? My ultimate goal is to have a little power with good exhaust sound and a clean exterior to go to some local shows and just enjoy my reliable G body.
 
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melloelky

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Jul 1, 2009
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Only cruising, I’m doing away with the A/C. The 454 has a mild street cam no upgrades planned for performance at this time on the motor. Car will remain a solid steel street piece. Obviously no cage. Seems that weight isn’t much of a factor based on what you stated. What about headers, you have a recommendation? My ultimate goal is to have a little power with good exhaust sound and a clean exterior to go to some local shows and just enjoy my reliable G body.
by removing the a/c system in it's entirety you're losing a bit of weight off the nose.if you're gonna replace the springs and have concerns about the rating not being enough,pick a v8 w/the a/c option.that's a spring that will be rated for a little more weight vs the version w/out a/c. keep in mind that a new spring of any kind might put your ride height HIGHER than it is now because they're new.the O.E springs have been in use for 30 plus years so they've sagged a bit over time. if it was me i'd get stock replacements but everyone has difrent tastes and acquired stances.there's not a lot of choices out there for the bbc in these cars but i've heard Hooker's long tubes part # 2241HKR fit well with stock 1978-88 motor mounts and clamshells.
 

Bruno

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Thread starter
Jan 31, 2021
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2
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48
by removing the a/c system in it's entirety you're losing a bit of weight off the nose.if you're gonna replace the springs and have concerns about the rating not being enough,pick a v8 w/the a/c option.that's a spring that will be rated for a little more weight vs the version w/out a/c. keep in mind that a new spring of any kind might put your ride height HIGHER than it is now because they're new.the O.E springs have been in use for 30 plus years so they've sagged a bit over time. if it was me i'd get stock replacements but everyone has difrent tastes and acquired stances.there's not a lot of choices out there for the bbc in these cars but i've heard Hooker's long tubes part # 2241HKR fit well with stock 1978-88 motor mounts and clamshells.
Great info! Thank you
 
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