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Swapping a B230FT engine into a 240!


Dec 23, 2002
Santa Cruz CA
Over the past few months I've been in the midst of this delightful process [well, I worked on it barely and slowly over 2-3 months than the past 2 weeks I've been tearing away at it pretty good. So I figured I'd make a nice write up on it].

I chose to swap a B230FT into my 240 for multiple reasons. First, the B21FT that had been sitting in the engine bay the prior 330k decided to pop a head gasket, aside from needing some new piston rings real bad. Since I was converting to MS in the near future, and the extra effort of rebuilding a B21FT was not worth it to me, I contacted my local Volvo wrecker [Hirsch Foreign] to see if they had an B230FT's in good shape, preferrably a squirter block [94+ b230fts, I might be mistaken but they could be in 93's, not 100% sure]. They had something right up my alley- a 1995 940 Turbo that got smashed in the rear, with only 90k and it had dealer maitenence records. $500 later and it was all mine.

That was my story. Although I went with the 94+ B230FT, the 89.5-93 B230FT's are still stout engines, but I'll get to a problem with them later. Another nice option to considor is building a +T'ed 94+ B230F. The main reason I chose the 94+ was for the piston oil squirters. Squirters only came in the 94+ B230FT's, and the reason the 94+ blocks are rad is because they have oil squirters that shoot engine oil onto the piston as it draws toward the bottom of its travel, which brings cooling and lubrication to those hotass pistons, and while it can extend the life of the engine [blah who cares going fast is funner] more importantly it can decrease the piston temperatures dramatically, which among other things can assist in keeping you out of detonation. It's been gone over quite a few times, but 89.5-93 [non squirter blocks] tend to generate issues with piston slap over time. It's been shown that most 94+ engines dont have this problem.

Depending on what year B230FT you get, you'll get some different issues fitting it into a 240. These issues can simply be resolved by tearing parts off of your old engine, assuming your old engine is a B21FT like mine was, otherwise I would look at sourcing some of these parts from a junkyard or someone on these boards.. Be sure to keep your old engine near you during the swap. I made the mistake of putting my old engine, complete with a ton of parts i could have used, near a dumpster. It sits there today, buried underneath a few hundred brake rotors and tires.

The follow is a list of things you are going to need to swap over, as well as a further explanation why.

-The oil cooler adaptor from the block on the B21FT, the oil cooler lines and the oil cooler. All these are neccessary, the 94+ used a special oil cooler unit that stabilized temps by routing coolant around the oil. I was going to use this originally, but due to the 940's being more spacious in the engine bay, the 240 downpipe [at least a 3''] will NOT clear the location of the oil filter on the stock 94+ oil cooler setup. I even tried using a remote filter adaptor, which also won't work! It's a pretty tight fit. Also the 240 oil cooler setup bolts right up, sort of. The B21FT has a little pipe fitting into the block which holds the oil cooler sandwich on and runs oil to the filter. Jack that badboy off your old B21FT, work your ass off at the junkyard getting one off [requires removing a bunch of stuff] or goto the dealership and unload $20 for it [like I did, I have the part # somewhere]

-The heater pipe from the water pump to the lower heater hose. Don't use the pipe from a B21FT, it won't work. Find a B230F or a earlier B230FT and jack the pipe off of that. This goes along with what I said above. The 94+ oil cooler setup uses this pipe to get coolant to the cooler unit. Snce your ditching that oil cooler setup, you gotta ditch this pipe

-The coolant "draincock". Jack this off of your B21FT. The 94+ has the draincock on one of the lower pipes that works with that lame oil cooler setup. On the block there should be a fitting with some pipe running off of it. Tear that out and stick the B21FT draincock in, or dodge using the word draincock ever again and find something that'll plug the hole up

-Motor Mount brackets. Obvious one. Take these off your 240's old engine.

-Block mounted distributor. If you are going MSnS, get a LH 2.2 dizzy. If your lazy like me and want to run kjet ignition to get the plain MS running right first, use the B21FT dizzy. The reason for the block mounted dizzy is obvious- ROOM! There is'nt any. Before dropping a B230FT in, get that blasted distributor off the back of the head, and get a freeze plug to plug it the hole in the back of the head. There is a plug in the block on the B230FT where the dizzy needs to go. Pop the bastard out when it comes time to do the next step, which is.....

-Block mounted distributor intermediate shaft. This has the gear drive so you can run the block mounted dizzy. Removing one from the B21FT or any other engine is not too hard. Pull the PCV box off [12 mm bolts], pull out the oil pump drive gear [I used a magnet to lift it out quickly]. Than yank the dizzy [it can be stubborn], remove the timing cover+belt and pull the shaft out.

-Accessories. You can run what you had on your B21FT by mounting the brackets, you can get rid of them all [like me], some of them [run the alternator and power steering using a 240's alt bracket and a non-ac power steering, like how I will eventually] or you can just use how the 940 is setup up. Using stuff from the 940 requires swapping to a power steering pump with an external resevoir, among other things which I am unsure of.

-Square tooth crank/intermediate shaft/cam gears. I'd say this is optional. The late B230FT's ran round tooth gears to keep the bottom end all quiet, but since I like loud bottom ends [not really, I just wanted to run my iPD Adjustable Cam Gear] I swapped mine over to square tooth gears. Make sure when ordering a new belt to get one from an older B230.

-Engine Management. This can be easy, or this can hard. In my case, since I was dumping the B21FT I evicted the Kjet and decided it was time to do Megasquirt. I would say this is the preferrable way. Another way is to swap in all the LH crap, which could be hard or easy depending on if your 240 was originally Kjetted or LH'ed. I say go MS if you are coming from KJet. Check out all the megasquirt information across the rest of the site for more info if you need it. I took the EFI swap as an opportunity to do other things like the Walbro.

-Oil Feed. This one can be a PITA. Next time I would definatly go with braided lines. The feed for my 15g barely fits between the motor mount and the oil cooler adaptor [from the b21ft] on the block. Bending is required to make it fit right. Just run braided lines and save yourself the headache.

Those are the only real issues with *fitting* one of these engines in a 240. Some of them are obvious, some are not. If you are considoring doing this swap, or will be doing this swap, I hope this has helped you. I will be posting pictures to provide some more detail, and if there is anything I forgot I'll make sure to add it in here. Feel free to ask me any questions if you need help, or tell me how rad I am for taking the time to write this.
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guess i will say it...you are totally rad for doing this write up...will help me alot when putting a b230ft in my 85 244 turbo. Thanks again!
Need Pictures

Hey bro,

I'm 18 from malaysia and I recently inherited my dad's 1984 Volvo 240,it has 433000+ kilometres on it and has never been through an overhaul,the engine is tired and need's a change,my earlier options were a Nissan SR20 or a Toyota Supra 1JZ,both these conversations have been done in Malaysia.My other option was of course the B230FT they are many such engines lying around in Kuala Lumpur,i really need pictures though as it can help me with my conversion,Please e-mail at andrew.netto@gmail.com

Thanks man

Andrew Netto
On your note about LH, that can be kinda tough depending on the year of LH stuff you use. The LH 2.2 240's had that Chrysler ignition computer that I don't think is pin compatible with the LH 2.2 turbo ignition computers. And if they are, can you place one (a turbo ignition computer) in the engine bay?

a joke of a swap

this task will be about half as difficult as yours. i'm taking a 1989 940 turbo b230ft and swaping it into my 1989 240, the questions i have are silly,
1. can i use the block mounted distributor from my b230f?
2. can i use my old fuel pump?
3. do i need to know anything about mounting the intercooler?
4.can any muffler shop build the downpipe?
5. what are some cheap things i can do to get alot more power? fuel pump, injectors, ecu upgrade if so which type, any exhaust suggestions.
6. how can i increase booste on this turbo?

anyways there are more where those came from, get back to me if possible
1 You can use the block mount distro, you have to.
2 The fuel pump should work
3 The intercooler mounts like the radiator. Just snipe the brackets off of the 700
4 Some shops could do it. You can also mod the 740 dp.
5 bigger turbo, 3 inch exhaust, boost controller
6 boost controller

One question. The newer style (Bigger!) radiator and intercooler with E-fan and the piping, does that fit in a 240?
This setup in a 240: (pics stolen from griz, hope you don't mind!



Ok, everything can be MADE to fit, but i like the stock look and i hate to cut away a lot of metal to fit these things..
maybe someone knows the size of these things? i can measure the space thats available in the 240 for these parts.
Lord_Athlon said:
it looks like it might if you bolt it up where the stock v6 rad would bolt up
that was what i was thinking too when i saw the extra mounting points for the radiator in my 240. It looks like it can fit. only problem is that the big 940 rad is deeper than a 240 one, so i think a bit of cutting is required.
the problem solved itself, the rad/intercooler in my parts car are the old style. not all newer 940's came with the big rad (only he ones with a/c), big intercooler and e-fan. The smaller rad etc bolts right in in a 240 IIRC..


The mounting points of the 240 for the bigger V6 rad and the air filter box are a the same width of the radiator mounts of a wide 940 rad (60 cm)... Give or take a few mm.. So that should fit... The non turbo 940 rad is the same depth (~45 cm) and thickness (~5 cm, but the 940's N/A core is thinner than a N/A 240 core) as a 240 rad, so if you go turbo (and thus remove the NA air filter box), you can fit a 940 rad in there. Only problem is that the turbo rad is a bit deeper (52-55 cm i think), so either go with a na radiator or just cut a bit out of the sheetmetal supporting the rad and fab a bracket to support it..
i believe the newer intercooler is as wide as the wide rad and the same depth of a normal na radiator.

once i've got all the stuff at home i'll post more info about the sizes..

EDIT 2: http://forums.turbobricks.com/showthread.php?t=40621 => moare info
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in so far as the big 940 radiator goes ...

i am very interested in your results. i have found a rad+fan and intercooler from a '95 940 and i intend to do the same, if i get through it this weekend, then i'll post some pics too.
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Pat, what did you do for fuel lines? My '83 has the fuel filter on the firewall still.

How much of the stock k-jet wiring did you rip out? I'm deciding on that now. I am going MS.
Mine has been done for a few months now, I finally posted a few pics here http://www.ovtuners.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=1871
As to fuel lines I just re-used the existing K-Jet feed and return lines with threaded adapters.
As to wiring from K-jet the 8 wire plug that has oil pressure, starter signal , alternator, exctetera is the only K-jet wiring left in the engine bay (the rest is still there just in case I have/want to go back to stock :lol: )
Most odd parts You might want to remember to get NEW! that are dealer only, turbo oil drain seals upper/lower and the "O" ring for the filter relocation unit. I was doing it as low buck as possible I should have done NEW motor mounts too since both have had to be done since the swap.
I know the first LH block mounted distributor I got did not work correctly, the openings for the hall sensor are spaced differently and would not allow timing to be set properly.
Pat, what did you do for fuel lines? My '83 has the fuel filter on the firewall still.

How much of the stock k-jet wiring did you rip out? I'm deciding on that now. I am going MS.

On one car [my 83] I had to get rid of the main pump [went to a single intank walbro] so I ran new line all the way to the rail from an adaptor where the main pump was [hose coming off the tank is larger].

On the Flathood [which I just LH'ed], I pretty much did what Alex described. Very easy.