229 modifications

Dec 21, 2021
3
1
I own a 78 malibu with a 229 v6 it came with the 200 ci. I like the malibu just to drive around in. the 229 runs great and I am wondering how much performance I would gain from 4.3 heads, intake, and a turbo for the 4.3 all on the 229 block also would the 4.3 vortec heads ported and milled fit the 229?
 

pagrunt

Geezer
Sep 14, 2014
8,059
113
Elderton, Pa
Just like it's big brother, the SBC based 90 degree V6's all interchange. It'll be like putting heads off a 350 on to a 305 (350 & 262 share the same bore as do the 305 & 229). In my opinion a 229 with a turbo will die a glorious death. With the money & effort, I'd work with a Vortec version of the 262 to do a turbo V6. Another thing, outside of what directly can be interchanged between the SBC & V6 there's really not much out there for Chevy V6.
 

ck80

Comic Book Super Hero
Feb 18, 2014
4,547
113
Just like it's big brother, the SBC based 90 degree V6's all interchange. It'll be like putting heads off a 350 on to a 305 (350 & 262 share the same bore as do the 305 & 229). In my opinion a 229 with a turbo will die a glorious death. With the money & effort, I'd work with a Vortec version of the 262 to do a turbo V6. Another thing, outside of what directly can be interchanged between the SBC & V6 there's really not much out there for Chevy V6.
Funny, I have a few minute conversation with a guy today at the swap meet that touched on just that issue.

I brought a spare performer intake for the buick v6 and tossed it on the table just to see what would happen.

Turns out, this guy was involved with racing vehicles that have a 4.3 because it's what was around at the time. We got to discussing how seemingly little of the performance stuff from the GM v6s of the day show up in circulation, obviously excluding the buick turbo versions.

Back to the OPs thread though, I'd say just enjoy it as is if it runs good. The expense you incur doing a turbo setup and head swap would be better going to a sbc V8 in this case, in no small part due to the fact that it's not even an original motor already - so there's no numbers matching argument which, for a v6, borders on silly itself outside LC2 areas.
 
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Ernest

Master Mechanic
Apr 28, 2016
351
63
Texas
Cheaper to go with a SBC conversion, but if you're reall bent on keeping the V6, definately go Vortec 4.3L and do what these guys did.

 

Ugly1

G-Body Guru
Oct 26, 2021
773
63
Lost in the woods of NH
You have to look around (or just go aftermarket) but Chevy did make a 4bbl intake for those motors. Seen one on a truck from 1984 I think it was. Not sure if the truck was crushed or moved to a different spot in the yard I saw it in.
 

Yav8

Master Mechanic
Aug 19, 2014
262
43
Manitowoc wis.
You have to look around (or just go aftermarket) but Chevy did make a 4bbl intake for those motors. Seen one on a truck from 1984 I think it was. Not sure if the truck was crushed or moved to a different spot in the yard I saw it in.
1984 and 85 used a cast iron intake. Both Holly and Edelbrock both made intake for the V6. I found the Holly worked better on my 4.3. The early ones came with out the counter balance shaft. With the latter vortec heads ( Intake from Edelbrock for the vortec heads. These are the ones with the intake bolts straight down are out there.) Comp Cams makes hyd. roller cams for these blocks. Any 350 piston will work but you will need to use the 4.3 rods. Its just a 350 block missing 3 and 6 cylinder. Easy 300 HP with a little planing. My 82 S-10 with a glide and a 4.33 gear set up for brackets ran the best of 13.24 and 104 mph. They make headers for any thing that had a V6 so that stuff is out their. Just bolt up the 4.3 and go to it.
 
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Ugly1

G-Body Guru
Oct 26, 2021
773
63
Lost in the woods of NH
1984 and 85 used a cast iron intake. Both Holly and Edelbrock both made intake for the V6. I found the Holly worked better on my 4.3. The early ones came with out the counter balance shaft. With the latter vortec heads ( Intake from Edelbrock for the vortec heads. These are the ones with the intake bolts straight down are out there.) Comp Cams makes hyd. roller cams for these blocks. Any 350 piston will work but you will need to use the 4.3 rods. Its just a 350 block missing 3 and 6 cylinder. Easy 300 HP with a little planing. My 82 S-10 with a glide and a 4.33 gear set up for brackets ran the best of 13.24 and 104 mph. They make headers for any thing that had a V6 so that stuff is out their. Just bolt up the 4.3 and go to it.
Ah, Chevy. Things change but stay the same. Interchangeably and “cheap “. Then they made improvements and messed with that. 😎
 

stew86MCSS396

Apprentice
Aug 1, 2022
84
18
(808)
I own a 78 malibu with a 229 v6 it came with the 200 ci. I like the malibu just to drive around in. the 229 runs great and I am wondering how much performance I would gain from 4.3 heads, intake, and a turbo for the 4.3 all on the 229 block also would the 4.3 vortec heads ported and milled fit the 229?
In addressing the OPs original question, I'd venture to say the same warnings that apply to using 350 heads on a 305 would apply. You did mention milling the heads but I'm not sure if the intent was to reduce cc to bring the compression back up but would that be a concern when boosted. That along with larger valves that might create valve shrouding in a smaller bore.

Might be a good idea to check out wikipedia Chevy 90 degree V6... The term early and late has been loosely thrown around here. There's 200/229 early, which would make 4.3s late but there's also early 4.3 and late 4.3. There's some differences between the generations/years that may not necessarily allow interchangeability of parts between the V6 and SBCs.
 
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