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Username Post: Motor ideas for 1959        (Topic#363178)
59 Elky 
Posts: 2

Reg: 11-06-20
11-06-20 08:10 AM - Post#2807093    

Just purchased a 1959 El Camino. The body was in good shape, needs paint but it has a locked up motor and no transmission. I am not for sure if it has the 283 or 348 at this time. If it has the 348 I am thinking about trying to bring the motor back to life, not so much if it is the 283.

If I switch out I was thinking about doing a 350 with a Th200 4R tranny. Was wanting to draw on the advice from others that may have went this route and see what advice can be offered. Also, if the 348 would accept this transmission is another thing that I am contemplating.

I am looking forward to learning as much has I can from fellow 1959 and 1st gen owners.


Member #189 Moderator and "19th Year" Platinum Supporting Member
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Age: 79
Loc: Napa, Ca USA
Reg: 04-02-00
11-06-20 12:20 PM - Post#2807120    
    In response to 59 Elky

Here are pictures of 348 versus 283. The 348 was called a W engine, because of the shape of the heads. e-1A4r... ioHvNK...

29-41, 42-48, 49-54 Moderator
1948 Chevy Fleetmaster Coupe Purchased 6/2010. Stock with rebuilt 52 216 installed May 1966.
1965 Chevy II 2 door post 350 3 speed manual
2019 Ford Ranger Lariat Super Crewcab

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Posts: 15192

Loc: Baltimore, MD
Reg: 11-27-04
11-14-20 09:58 AM - Post#2807683    
    In response to Keith_Knox

If it is a 348, have it rebuilt and put it back in. Especially if you find it was the original engine or at least if the Elky had a 348 originally. There aren’t that many of them around anymore and it’s just a cool motor. And very rare in an El Camino. A friend of mine has a ‘59 that originally had a 348, but it has a small block in it now. He wants to put a 348 in it again though. Not sure about automatic transmission options with it, but we live in a great age for things like using old and new stuff together.

Friends don’t let friends drive Fords.

1999 Silverado Z71 4X4 extra-cab short bed
1983 Malibu Fauxmad - tubbed
1978 El Camino Kustomized
1972 Monte Carlo
1957 210 handyman wagon
1957 Nomad sport wagon
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Posts: 3877

Loc: Bedford, Texas, USA
Reg: 11-13-02
11-24-20 12:31 PM - Post#2808524    
    In response to wagonman100

My friend had a 59 with the 348 and I believe a Turboglide.

1983 G20 Van, 350 TPI, Ported 906 Vortecs, Edelbrock 3817 Base, ASM oversize runners. Reed Custom Roller cam, 700r4, 12 bolt with 3.08 gears, Doug Thorley Tri-Y headers, true duals

Posts: 2

Reg: 02-04-21
02-04-21 04:08 PM - Post#2813622    
    In response to Keith_Knox

I am going retro with mine. 350 with 400 + hp with Holley Sniper, Muncie 4 speed, Ridetech air, Ford 9 inch. Plan is drive it as much as possible.


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