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Chrysler V6 engines Discussion area for the 3.3 and 3.8 turbo and non-turbo

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post #1 of 9 Old 01-02-2019, 01:33 PM Thread Starter
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Question Any one have these measurements?

Trying to figure out what would be a good combo for some stronger internals for the 3.3/3.8 setups. Does any one have the following measurements for pre-2001 3.3/3.8 engines?

Piston to Valve Clearance
Piston to deck distance


It looks like on of these piston/rod combos would work in a 3.8L, provided I know the valve to piston clearance and the piston to deck distance.

4.8/5.3 Gen III LS Piston

Along with either
Buick GN3.8 Rod
Ford 2.3L EcoBoost Rod
Ford 3.5L EcoBoost Rod

All three of the rods are very similar length to the 3.3/3.8 setup, have the correct or very very close big end width. They would all need the crank ground down, but that's nothing.

The issues would be (All these tied to LS pistons compared to 3.8 rod length):
Buick Rod is .015" longer, tied to the LS piston, it'd make the piston and rod .057" higher in the bore.
2.3L Rod is .07" shorter and with the LS piston would be .032" further down the bore.
3.5L Rod is .066" longer and would put the piston .108" further up.

I know one of these combinations will work when combined with either a piston with shorter compression distance and/or using a 3.3L crank in a 3.8L motor, allowing a longer rod to be used, but once again, would need a lower compression piston.
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post #2 of 9 Old 01-03-2019, 01:06 PM
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Re: Any one have these measurements?

What are you trying to do? What do you have now? What are your goals?
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post #3 of 9 Old 01-03-2019, 01:26 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Any one have these measurements?

Trying to find a cheap semi-bolt combo of parts to drop into a 3.3 or 3.8 Chrysler. Custom parts would be near $1500-2000 - Nothing worth spending on a minivan engine.

The stock engine has shown to handle around 500HP - But idk about reliability. So my idea is to find a combination of engine parts that could be dropped into the engine at a fraction of the cost with a little machine work.

You can look at the document I've been working on:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1...TRD7hN4oyWi1qg

Ryan Hogan has shown interest in tuning it, I'm sure you know him from your Dakota.
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post #4 of 9 Old 01-04-2019, 01:03 PM
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Re: Any one have these measurements?

I know Ryan *very* well...went to college with him! ;)

I have seen newer 3.8's in Jeep's with a supercharger make some more power, but nowhere near 500. The 3.3/3.8 has a fairly weak bottom end. The rumor I heard years ago was that somehow the 3.5L crank can bolt into the 3.3/3.8 (it's a derivative of that engine) and that's what the Shelby CanAm cars used. Since they were sealed engines and I don't know anyone who has taken one apart, I have no verification of this.

What are you doing for a transmission?
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post #5 of 9 Old 01-07-2019, 05:54 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Any one have these measurements?

I'm going off the word of Prodigy Performance who push their turbo 3.8 builds to about 450whp - They say around there the pistons like to grenade. The 3.3/3.8 bottom end should be find as far as I can tell, I have plenty of proof to say the crank is just find handling whatever. And yeah, you can use the 3.5L if you machine it down and have it work (Pushrod vs SOHC), however the snouts will almost always break off. Shelby Can Am engines use a Shelby made crank very similar to the 3.5, custom rods and pistons. Rockers, heads, pushrods, and quite a bit is stock. I talk a lot to the guy who owns two of them and has taken them apart piece by piece.

The transmission I will be using is a stock 41TE until it explodes, then I'll be swapping to a T-850 from a 2.7 R/T (or GTC) transmission.
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post #6 of 9 Old 01-08-2019, 01:03 PM
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Re: Any one have these measurements?

Maybe the newer 3.8's have better bottom ends than the original 3.3's? The story goes that Chrysler was looking into turbocharging the V6 engines. During durability testing the 3.3 spilled its guts all over the brand new dyno room...
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post #7 of 9 Old 01-08-2019, 01:08 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Any one have these measurements?

Yeah.. But you have to take into account.
A. It was a prototype 3.3, not production.
B. The turbo was one off of a 2.2, not sized appropriately.
C. Turbo tuning in 1989 was awful.

Like I said, plenty of instances of the 3.3 or 3.8 doing a fine job on boost. I'm not worried. I just want to figure out a way of doing cheap upgrades in case you want to push it and beyond what stock can do.

This point has been made a few times on here and a few hundred on the LX, LH, and Intrepid forums.
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post #8 of 9 Old 01-09-2019, 01:09 PM
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Re: Any one have these measurements?

I agree that the 3.3 engine used would have been a pre-production unit, but would have used parts intended for production as it was durability testing.

I don't know what size turbo was on the engine, however I did ask. The dyno operator didn't remember. I can for sure tell you that the turbos used on the 3.0 SOHC turbo prototype engines were most definitely NOT one of the options used on the 2.2/2.5 engines. Small-ish for "big" power, sure, but more than adequate for decent power and reaction.

The tuning at the time would have been pretty much the same as the 2.2/2.5 engines. While there's certainly better options today, and different methods of control, it's hardly the same as comparing it to rising rate regulators, extra injectors, etc. that have been used in the past with varying degrees of success. I seriously doubt that the engine control was the issue...especially on a manufacturer's experimental engine on a dyno being used for durability testing. It would have had all kinds of sensors poking all in it for monitoring all aspects. I seriously doubt they would have gotten to that point without making sure the tuning wouldn't scatter it.

It's all moot anyway...the people involved either don't remember all of the details or aren't around anymore. The V6 turbo program got cancelled and it never happened. If you can succeed in doing the manual transmission swap, I think it's worth possibly looking at, but until then, the A604 has a limited life under that strain without a better shift schedule. The only OEM program known to work well is the Prowler, and the way I understand things, you have to have a VIN in order to flash the TCM...IF you can find someone willing to do it that has the stuff...and it's unknown whether the Prowler TCM program will work in a regular A604 without the "slap shift" option. Maybe the LH guys would have an easier time with this, but the FWD TM's we mess with never had that.

Yes, I have seen a few 3.3's and 3.8's with turbo's and superchargers. It does work. For how long? Unknown....
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post #9 of 9 Old 01-09-2019, 01:14 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Any one have these measurements?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Reaper1 View Post
It's all moot anyway...the people involved either don't remember all of the details or aren't around anymore. The V6 turbo program got cancelled and it never happened. If you can succeed in doing the manual transmission swap, I think it's worth possibly looking at, but until then, the A604 has a limited life under that strain without a better shift schedule. The only OEM program known to work well is the Prowler, and the way I understand things, you have to have a VIN in order to flash the TCM...IF you can find someone willing to do it that has the stuff...and it's unknown whether the Prowler TCM program will work in a regular A604 without the "slap shift" option. Maybe the LH guys would have an easier time with this, but the FWD TM's we mess with never had that.

Yes, I have seen a few 3.3's and 3.8's with turbo's and superchargers. It does work. For how long? Unknown....
I do know a few people that can program the TCM for whatever VIN, and since the 41TE from the PT Cruiser uses Autostick, I'm sure there's a way. But like you say, without a good scheduler it'll detonate. That's fine, I think the T-850 would be a great fit. As for the longevity, one strong case I know of is a sandrail that was running a 3.3 with an HX35 on 18psi all the time. One day his wastegate failed and spiked 24psi or something and melted a piston. He sent it to a machine shop and had it bored .060 or so over and slapped GNX 3.8 rods and Ford 3.8 pistons in it. Probably pushing 500HP or so now, or was, haven't talked to him in a year or so.

But the gist is, this isn't well documented and I wanna help with that. If I had these measurements, it'd make upgrades a lot easier.
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3.3 , 3.8 , connecting rod , engine design , ls piston , measurements , specifications

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