Yep, a Straight 8, why not? Don’t need a prop shaft -- straight to the differential!
What’s weird about the engine visible in the foreground on the first photo above is that it’s basically contemporaneous with the van. It’s from a 1948 Chrysler Town and Country. The US had a vibrant industrial economy after the war, and gas was apparently pretty cheap.
The van is still in the wiring, plumbing and like phase. Things are delayed while we’re waiting for some parts to arrive from Japan. Japan? Yes, some of the engine bits are available only NOS from Japan. Luckily Tokyo is closer to Vancouver than London is, or even the eastern-most parts of Canada, so they’re not too expensive to bring over. And for you purists who scoff at the Japanese A-Series engine, please note that I recently blocked off some unneeded section of the intake manifold and guess what those threads were? One-quarter and one-half BSPT, a holdover from the days when Nissan was a licensee of Austin/BMC.
In January Aaron hooked up the rear lights and sent me a photo of them shining at work (included above). You know when you watch those medical programs and the patient is defibrillated back to life? That’s what that was like. In the next few weeks the fuel will be connected, the water plumbing and brake plumbing will be completed and the electrical will be all wired up. The goal is to get the engine running before proceeding to paint and assembly.