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oldsaw Dork
6/17/10 11:32 a.m.
DukeOfUndersteer wrote:

That's a nice and tidy swap, but I'd hate having to pull an engine for a t-belt change.........

If you're seriously considering a Honda install, I too would recommend the D-series; the weight would be much closer to the original unit and spares/parts are damn near everywhere.

Giant Purple Snorklewacker
Giant Purple Snorklewacker SuperDork
6/17/10 11:33 a.m.

One word: rotary

DukeOfUndersteer SuperDork
6/17/10 12:05 p.m.

In reply to Giant Purple Snorklewacker:

haha, what trans can i mate that to that is transverse? It would be one little screamer!

I am thinking about emailing this guy with the D15B7, getting all that, and Megasquirt. Anyone have any info on a Megasquirted D motor?

4cylndrfury SuperDork
6/17/10 12:09 p.m.

1kCC motorcycle engine...NOW

turboswede GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
6/17/10 12:11 p.m.

BTW, the Fiat 128/X-1/9 axles and outboard cv joints mate up to a Chrysler 2.2/2.5 inboard cv joint. Would also work for a Neon/Stratus/PT Cruiser.

You know just thought I'd throw that out there ;)

DukeOfUndersteer SuperDork
6/17/10 12:37 p.m.

In reply to 4cylndrfury:

yes. How do I get it to work with FWD? Ive been looking at the Mini-Busa swap kits, looks tough... but yes, i do want!

In reply to turboswede:

so if i could find a SRT4 drivetrain, it will fit? Whoa!

Travis_K Dork
6/17/10 12:52 p.m.

I don't think parts for that engine are hard to find though are they? I was going to buy one (until it turned out to be waaaaay too rusty), but i looked at parts availability and cost and it didn't seem that bad. I'm not sure about bearings and stuff like that, but gaskets, timing belt, etc are all pretty easy. I think alot of the parts for the fiat engine are actually alot cheaper than honda stuff too. $25 for a head gasket, $10 for plug wires, $10 for a timing belt,$30 water pump etc. Are there other parts that you needed and couldn't find? I could see the induction system being somewhat expensive, but what about a yugo efi manifold and megasquirt?

Its your car though , if you really dont think you could keep the fiat engine running i guess that would be a good reason to swap it. I haven't ever had one, although my parents had a brand new one for a daily driver. I just think the engine is kinda what makes the 128 interesting, with a honda engine its just a civic thats harder to get parts for.

DukeOfUndersteer SuperDork
6/17/10 1:06 p.m.

well the head gaskets and plug wires and all the maintenance stuff is somewhat easy to find, like Ebay or International Auto Parts, but alot of the stuff is starting to get hard to find. Like i want to do a 5 speed conversion from an X1/9, cant find 1 gearbox anywhere for months now. Was going to replace the rad, nothing available for it. Went to Pep Boys or whatever the close by part store is, told the kid i had a Fiat 128, he was like "what the hell is that?" I have to admit, the Fiat motor is badass. At full song, it sounds like a mini Ferrari. I am just scared the aftermarket for Fiats are getting very slim. I have no idea where Bayless went, ordered an air filter from I.A., just for it to be backordered for 6 months! If i were to keep it, i would love to do a twin cam, dual Webers with a 5 speed...

turboswede GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
6/17/10 1:21 p.m.

The Lampretti designed 128 motor is a screamer and has been used until recently in Fiats in Europe. Most recently they had a DOHC 16-valve variant as well as larger displacements, etc. There was a guy that swapped one of the newer motors in his X-1/9. Had to build his own header, etc.

Yeah, look at some of the 2.2 turbo swaps into X-1/9's to get an idea. The older motor doesn't fit well in a Exxie, but the newer 2.0 might work better. Not sure about the 128 as I've not spent much time around them and their engine bay.

DukeOfUndersteer SuperDork
6/17/10 1:30 p.m.

my 128 bay is pretty narrow. I would go measure it now, but we are having a torrential down pour right now...

EDIT: from Strut mount to strut mount: 33inches. Rad support to firewall: 23inches

turboswede GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
6/17/10 1:47 p.m.

The X-1/9 was the same.

The issue with the older motors wasn't side to side (mine fit pretty well, I just needed to notch the driver's side frame rail to get the transaxle to fit properly) the issue was the big doofus water pump hanging out the front of the block on the 2.2/2.5 Luckily an electric water pump could be used to eliminate that issue without hacking the firewall and forward frame rail out to clear the pulley and belt.

On the newer 2.0/2.4 motors the water pump is driven by the timing belt and is much more tidy along the front of the motor. On the back is the power steering pump and alternator. Where the water pump would be on the older blocks is the A/C compressor.

Some pics of my old X-1/9 and a 2.5 turbo drivetrain: http://www.pnw-sdac.org/gallery/main.php?g2_itemId=634

Travis_K Dork
6/17/10 1:50 p.m.

Hmm, well I see tons of x1/9s in pick and pull here, I imagine a transmission can be found somewhere, just have to be lucky. Have you tried looking for parts just by putting "fiat 128 timing belt" or whatever in google? You get the same stupid spam advertisements, but usually it shows some places that have whatever it is also. I kinda try to avoid IAP, they mostly have stuff for people who like to throw money at a restoration with aftermarket bad quality parts, although they do have a few good things.

DukeOfUndersteer SuperDork
6/17/10 1:54 p.m.

Wow. What did you have to do for motor mounts? You swap is really starting to interest me...

turboswede GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
6/17/10 1:58 p.m.

BTW, Bayless and Midwest X-1/9 joined up:


Might try contacting them.

Also Steve Hoelscher is still one of the best X-1/9 transmission builders around and still peruses the xwebforums, even though he now races an MR2 (he carried his suspension tuning tips over to the MR2 folks as well and they've seen the light)


I also have an EFI 1500 that I'd let you have for the price of shipping. Timing belt is still intact as is the intake and exhaust manifold. I can pallet it up for you and drop it off at a freight place if you're interested.

I didn't get so far as to build the mounts. Once I realized I'd have to cut and weld, I stopped the project as I didn't have the technology or the skills at the time.

My plan for the mounts was to cut the driver's frame, then cut the transmission frame mount from a donor car in the junk yard and combine the two. Similar to the passenger side.

The front mount would be a stock mount, sectioned and welded to work.

The rear transaxle mount was likely to end up being ditched in favor of moving it to the stock Fiat location.

The intake was going to be a DirectConnection over the head intercooler solution on a stock 2.2 turbo bottom end. Basically a stock suck-through intake solution, modified to use an overhead intercooler. The 150hp and 150lb-ft would be plenty in a small car like that as others have had severe wheel spin issues at over 175hp in their 2.2 turbo swapped X's.

Clutch was going to be a hydraulic pull-type slave attached to the front of the transaxle.

Shifter was going to be customized, luckily the 523 I was using is the same as the Neon's and is easier to modify for this situation since it is available from the top of the transaxle. So longer cables and a few brackets later, it would be working as the stock shifter practically dropped into the hole in the interior.

Electrics would have likely been MegaSquirt, if not factory Chrysler electronics, which are pretty simple and adaptable if you have a good understanding how their supposed to work and pay attention the condition of the wiring and connectors.

Of course now that I have some fabrication skills and tools, I want to find another X-1/9 and finish this swap. First though? I need to finish my 924.....

DukeOfUndersteer SuperDork
6/17/10 2:19 p.m.

Damn! That 1500 would be most awesome! How much do you think shipping would be for something like that? If i could get that, Megasquirt, that would be the boobies! Like Travis is saying, just need to keep my eye out at the yank-a-part for a 5 speed box to attach. I know when i do the 5 speed, i need to notch out some of the subframe to get it to fit, but a 1500 EFI 5 speed 128! WOOOAAAHHHH!

turboswede GRM+ Memberand SuperDork
6/17/10 2:29 p.m.

Well, this one was shipped from FL for about $150 I think.....

DukeOfUndersteer SuperDork
6/17/10 2:33 p.m.

PM sent!

carzan Reader
6/17/10 7:38 p.m.

Hehe...the awesome is building.

Jensenman SuperDork
6/17/10 8:29 p.m.

Cool car!

I was going to suggest the 1500 swap. Plenty of aftermarket stuff still available for that one.

I'd start looking for a Strada transaxle. X 1/9's have the shift linkage pointing out of the wrong side of the case, meaning it would be pointing at the radiator. Stradas have the shift linkage on the other side.

mblommel GRM+ Memberand Reader
6/17/10 9:50 p.m.

In reply to Jensenman:

Would a Yugo tranny be the same as the 128 but possibly a 5 speed?

I was wrestling with the idea of swapping my X1/9 to a Honda B16, but I'm pretty much OK with the 1300 that I have. It certainly does make the right noises even if it is slow.

DukeOfUndersteer SuperDork
6/18/10 8:25 a.m.

Ya, i have heard there would be some modifications needed for the shift linkage for the X1/9 box to fit. They say the Yugo GVX will fit like a glove, but how will i find one of those? They say the Strada box uses different axles and hubs, but it is do-able...

8/25/18 3:05 p.m.

In reply to DukeOfUndersteer :


I Hope you see this message Cos i små actually the new owner of your Old Fiat 128, and i would really like to hear some details, and some history og the car :) 

Hope that you Can Help me


EastCoastMojo GRM+ Memberand Mod Squad
8/25/18 4:15 p.m.

I opened this old thread expecting a canoe, but this is pretty cool. Welcome to the forum!  What are your plans for the car?

Mndsm MegaDork
8/25/18 4:26 p.m.
EastCoastMojo said:

I opened this old thread expecting a canoe, but this is pretty cool. Welcome to the forum!  What are your plans for the car?

I saw dukes name pop up and wondered where he was these days. 

EastCoastMojo GRM+ Memberand Mod Squad
8/25/18 4:28 p.m.

Yeah, haven't seen him around in a long time ...

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