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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm considering all sorts of options for my '65 220 with a B20. It currently has a partially locked up M40 (shifts between R, 1st and 2nd only) and I'd like to upgrade to a five or six speed. Considering an engine swap, as well, maybe to a B230f or similar. I know there are M46 overdrives available and have come across a few M47 five speeds. Any bolt ups or easily adapted transmissions I should be looking at? Any thing to stay away from?
 

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If you're not going turbocharged, then the B20 with an M41 will be the easiest swap to do. Only drawback is you might have to rebuild the tranny as they're all old now. They're bulletproof reliable at those power levels.

If you swap to the B230 and don't go turbo, the M46 or M47 will be the easiest choices, or an M90 which will be expensive. The M90 will also handle turbo power.

Anything else will require adapters, if you can find or make the adapter then you have almost unlimited options.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks. Will an M46 or M47 fit a B20 without an adapter? An M41 with the switched overdrive isn't appealing but may have to do. I'd rather shift then press a button. I probably won't go turbo, so that's not an issue. I'm not looking to build a hot rod, just a dependable DD with a little more power than I'll need for mountain and highway driving.
 

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M46 or M47 will not fit a B20 without an adapter because the B21/23/230 is a slant engine while the B20 mounts "straight up." Neither is an integral 5-speed -- both are 4-speed boxes with an added overdrive module. The M46 uses the same (or very similar) electrically activated OD as the M41, while on the M47 it is selected by the shift lever.

The B230 doesn't make more power than a good B20 naturally aspirated.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks, Phil. I'm new to Volvos. That does alter my thinking. I was also thinking FI would be good but maybe not necessary.
 

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The tunnel on those is just big enough for the M40 or M41 transmission. Most 5 speeds require some sheet metal modification to fit.

I was reminded of just how tight things are recently when I got the B20/M41 in my 66 220 then started wiring up the overdrive.
Had to unbolt the cross member and tilt the engine so I could hook up the 4th gear lockout switch.

Keep that in mind if you go with an M41 put the wires on that switch before it's installed. Or at least before everything's all bolted together.

By the way I'm really liking that overdrive ! Every idiots got a 5 speed these days.
Get a Laycock de Normanville and you'll be the only guy in town with one. (chicks dig it)
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
The tunnel on those is just big enough for the M40 or M41 transmission. Most 5 speeds require some sheet metal modification to fit.

I was reminded of just how tight things are recently when I got the B20/M41 in my 66 220 then started wiring up the overdrive.
Had to unbolt the cross member and tilt the engine so I could hook up the 4th gear lockout switch.

Keep that in mind if you go with an M41 put the wires on that switch before it's installed. Or at least before everything's all bolted together.

By the way I'm really liking that overdrive ! Every idiots got a 5 speed these days.
Get a Laycock de Normanville and you'll be the only guy in town with one. (chicks dig it)
Good tips, bobbyz. The fabrication doesn't bother me, just getting the correct functionality.
 

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I'm not super sure on this, but won't a T9 out of like an escort, fit in a factory 122 tunnel? Just something I remember from when I was trying to figure out new drivetrain. I dunno where you would source one from, maybe ebay? but I know its a skinny 5 speed that I think would hold up okay to moderate power. Maybe a t5 if you don't mind a bit of tunnel work. They're both ford trannies so shouldn't be too hard to adapt. Don't know about the t9 but t5's you can pick up for dirt cheap in a bunch of different ratios. Just a thought, Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I'm not super sure on this, but won't a T9 out of like an escort, fit in a factory 122 tunnel? Just something I remember from when I was trying to figure out new drivetrain. I dunno where you would source one from, maybe ebay? but I know its a skinny 5 speed that I think would hold up okay to moderate power. Maybe a t5 if you don't mind a bit of tunnel work. They're both ford trannies so shouldn't be too hard to adapt. Don't know about the t9 but t5's you can pick up for dirt cheap in a bunch of different ratios. Just a thought, Good luck!
I've got a GM T-5 under the bench I could adapt but it's a little heavy. Would require the tunnel work, for sure. The T9 could be an interesting choice, I suppose. I'll look at that. Thanks.
 

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If I rember right from my own searching the T9 isn't to common in the States. Some of the British car guys use Toyota 5 speeds.
But the problem with all the little 5 speeds is all those little cars went to front drive years ago. Here in the rust belt most of them have been crushed already.
I really didn't think I'd find an M41 but I saw one on Turbo Bricks in Kansas for 150 bucks and the gentleman was nice enough to ship it up here.
The shipping was 75 bucks which is cheap considering I ship a guitar amp head to New England and that cost 50 bucks.
 

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I want to look into a Miata 6 speed. I think the first 4 gears are close, but who knows if it would work? Not an easy swap for sure. Would require more than a hacksaw and duct tape. :) Not a bolt up.
Suppose to be a smooth shifting trans.
 

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I want to look into a Miata 6 speed. I think the first 4 gears are close, but who knows if it would work? Not an easy swap for sure. Would require more than a hacksaw and duct tape. :) Not a bolt up.
Suppose to be a smooth shifting trans.
Probably easier to transplant the Miata gearbox avec engine rather than try and graft it onto the back of a B20!
 

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If you decide you want to go with an M41 with a D-type overdrive, I've got one that works. $500, located on the west coast. PM me if interested.

Dan
 

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I did some research and the Miata trannys, both 5 and six speeds should fit in the stock Amazon tunnel. That is as far as I got however, building a house got in the way,

The Miata has an integral bell housing so it would not be easy as making an adapter but having several Miatas I would be real happy to have one of those in my Amazon. I don't see myself having time to work it out, but if someone else does..........:)

Larry
 

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A few guys at work have Miatas but none are apart (shows that they are good cars?) I have a bell housing from an old Amazon parts car, just be interesting to see how far off the bolt patterns are. (only part of the issue of course)
 

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My last street Miata had a 1.2liter intercooled twin screw. Made 257 RWHP, and I beat the daylights out of that car. It ran 86 in the 1/8 and it was an absolute hooligan car. Never had any problem with the five speed in that car. The trannys are a ball to shift, just wrist needed.
 
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