ls1 engine swap

Discussion in 'High Tech Retrofits' started by 78rallysport, May 5, 2009.

  1. 7T3LS1

    7T3LS1 Veteran Member

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    Actually the Nova is fairly light with a curb weight of around 3200 lbs which is why so many were drag raced. The curb weight of my Z28 (automatic) was around 3400 lbs. No, the Nova didn't have a T56, it had a 700R4 build by Bowtie Overdrives.

    Everyone has their opinion on their favorite engines and I respect that. I'll stand by my opinion that the LS1 is superior to the best SBC ever made. There is a reason that GM spent all that money and now can make well over 400 HP with the LS series, power that only a BBC used to make. If they could have done that by tinkering with the SBC I suspect they would have gone that way.
     
  2. 1970camaroRS

    1970camaroRS Veteran Member

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    I've crunched the numbers and am in the middle of a build right now. Want power, light weight, low price? Go GenIII.

    480hp LQ4 build with crappy 20 year old cam profile known as the 'hot cam'

    http://www.carcraft.com/projectbuild/116_0704_lq4_short_block/index.html

    Add a real cam and L92 heads and you get 550hp

    http://www.carcraft.com/techarticles/ccrp_0705_chevrolet_ls2_l92_cylinder_heads/index.html

    All for an insanely low price.

    438rwhp LQ9

    http://www.ls1tech.com/forums/dynamometer-results-comparisons/831652-budget-lq9-dyno-results.html

    450rwhp 6.0L with L92 heads and a big cam

    http://www.ls1tech.com/forums/dynam...98-6-0l-l92s-ms4-108lsa-gmpp-daves-elbow.html

    There are even more build ups out there. Basically, a stock LQ4/LQ9 short block with a big cam will push 475-500hp. With cheap L92 heads they will make 525-550+hp.

    I'm currently building a 6.0L with a G5X3 cam, carb intake, msd control box and maybe L92 heads. Using nothing but stock GM parts, or used parts. Will be slighly less than $3,000 into the whole swap and I'll make 500+hp. Try that with a SBC.

    So far, I got my LQ4 in a trade. Grabbed a G5X3 cam, compR lifters, PRC springs with titanium locks and retainers for $500. A gently used MSD 6010 box for $200. Need a ton more, but you can see where I'm going.

    Here's basically what I'm building but with a larger cam...but it's in a Mustang. Oh well.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zE8vkJUWqdw&feature=channel_page

    http://www.ls1tech.com/forums/eastern-members/1086700-cam-only-lq4-l92-n-results.html

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OLuqpKcpEig&NR=1

    Here's a thread of guys bouncing around basic LQ4/L92 ideas.

    http://www.ls1tech.com/forums/gener...gine/1090728-lq4-build-needs-your-advice.html
     
  3. Knuckle Dragger

    Knuckle Dragger Mayor of Simpleton Staff Member Lifetime Gold Member

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    Options are just that, opinions. You want to get pissy because you come into the "High Tech Retrofit" section and find that the posters don't share your opinion on the LSx platform? Everyone here has to chose what their best bang for the buck is, and some don't make choices based solely on money.

    I find it funny when people try to argue opinions, it's all subjective. If the old technology is good enough for you then have a ball, but this section caters to those of us that prefer to look beyond the old stuff and see what the new stuff has to offer. If that ain't your bag why come in and play the role of a troll?
     
    Last edited: May 10, 2009
  4. badazz81z28

    badazz81z28 Veteran Member

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    Whos getting pissy? Im not Im just sharing my experience. I looked into the LS1 and the LQ4...I couldnt find one that was at a decent price. The LQ4 was the cheapest I found at a salvage yard for $2500 with 80K miles on it. I did find an LS1 long block that needed a rebuild for $1000. Your right some people do have money to piss away and dont care what stuff cost...:confused:
     
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  5. jakeshoe

    jakeshoe Veteran Member Lifetime Gold Member

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    What exactly is your experience?

    How many LS swaps have you done?

    How many engines/cars have you built from the ground up?

    Some here are speaking from a vast amount of actual experience, not what they saw on a calculator.

    Go build your Gen I SBC with a roller cam, aluminum heads, long rods, EFI, and buy ALL the components, and keep a record of the cost, then when you also have actually installed an LSx swap, and kept the records on it, come back and tell us which one was cheaper.

    I've been there and done that for both, and helped others do both, the GEN I style engines HUNDREDS of times, and the LS style several times.

    There is a reason I make the recommendation I do and it's not because I've "crunched the numbers".
     
  6. badazz81z28

    badazz81z28 Veteran Member

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    I have plain old home garage mechanic experience. Someone who does this for living could easily say its a piece of cake, but most of us are not profesionals and do not do this for a living. People like me have to dig through salvage yards and search the net for parts. I dont have hook-ups or friends in the business who know how to get things cheaper. I have looked around and added up the prices for all the stuff I would need and its a little out there. Im not bull headed and love to hear your advice. I would really like to do tackle this one day in the future. I just need to find out how to do it cheaper. I am one of those guys that has to play by the mighty $$...
     
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  7. jakeshoe

    jakeshoe Veteran Member Lifetime Gold Member

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    You need to actually add up the cost of a Gen I SBC with the same/similar components and you'll see the cost benefits of the LS engines.

    Especially when you look at the finished product as far as power.
     
  8. Knuckle Dragger

    Knuckle Dragger Mayor of Simpleton Staff Member Lifetime Gold Member

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    You're the one coming into a LS1 thread trying to convince us your right and we are all wrong, not me.

    If you base all your decisions on cost not application and practicality then you are foolish. No one said to piss away your money, but if the short term goal of saving money jacks up the long term goal of satisfaction you've pissed it away anyhow.

    The deals are out there you just have to be patient to find them. Trying to do the swap in a hurry hurts the pocket book every time, ask Ace. Jakeshoe hooks everyone up. If I can find a deal I'm not selfish I'll help you get the same one. I'll post it on this forum. Lots of posts here on where to buy what for the best price, and what to modify instead of spending the money.
     
  9. jakeshoe

    jakeshoe Veteran Member Lifetime Gold Member

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    OK,
    I have some time to elaborate.

    Typical SBC build since we're "crunching numbers".

    350 Core- $100
    Rebuild short block at a machine shop. $800-1000 easily.

    Roller cam- $200
    Roller lifters-$250
    Aluminum heads- $1200 avg. Even if you buy a used set for less you have to figure in rebuild costs.

    Aluminum intake, good used-$75
    Carb- $250

    Distributor- $200

    Total- ~$3200.
    You will still have other expenses, accesories, headers, oil pan, hardware, etc.

    LSx engine-
    $1750 for a complete LQ4, 4L80E setup was the last used one I bought. They can be had cheaper.
    $450 for ready to run fuel tank
    $250 for plumbing to engine
    $700 for cam kit with springs and pushrods.
    $400 for harness mods and reprogram if you can't do it yourself.
    $45 for engine mount adapters
    $200 for oil pan or mods

    Call it $4K for LS engine installed with over 450 HP, overdrive trans, EFI, aluminum heads, and roller cam.

    By the time you add any decent OD trans to the Gen I setup above, you are over $4K and you would be pushing it to make 450 streetable HP from a 350 cube Gen I with $1200 heads or any heads.
    Add a $2000-5000 EFI system on top of the Gen I engine and you can see where this is going.

    I'm a BBC guy, I don't think there is a substitute for streetable HP/dollar than a BBC engine based on a 454 core.
    You can have 450 HP easily with mild compression, OEM heads, flat tappet cam, and you can scrounge the parts from swap meets, salvage yards, etc.

    However,
    You are dealing with 50 yr old technology and 30-45 yr old parts.

    The LS platform is the replacement for both Gen I SBCs and BBC's. You simply cannot beat it for power per dollar, availability of NEW parts, streetability, and modern tech.

    Combos I've done for myself:
    1968 Chevy SWB truck, 307 and later 350 Chevy (1990)
    1971 Camaro, 350 SBC later 402 BBC (1994)
    1980 Malibu drag car, 350 SBC (1996)
    [​IMG]
    1987 S10 4x4 350 SBC EFI conversion (1997)
    1972 Camaro 350 SBC converted to 454/T56 (1998)
    [​IMG]
    1969 Chevelle, 305 converted to 427 BBC (2001)
    1968 Malibu, 400 SBC (2002)
    1978 Z/28 505 BBC, TH400, all roller, heavily worked OEM heads (2005)
    [​IMG]
    1974 Datsun 260Z, 400 SBC with TrickFlow heads (2005)
    [​IMG]

    1955 Chevy 2dr post, 327, TH350 converted to 5.3/4L80E (2004-now), car will be getting one of the 6.0L LY6s crate engines I sell, and a T56. The 5.3/4L80E combo will be going in my '67 Chevy truck project next month.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: May 10, 2009
  10. BonzoHansen

    BonzoHansen Administrator Lifetime Gold Member

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    Do what I did. I bought a body damaged (RH 1/4 wrecked) but otherwise clean & unmolested 99 Z28 for $4500. After taking the LS1, every electrical part in the car (BCM, everything), the brakes and the T56 out, and trading the 4th gen posi for a 2nd gen 3.90 posi, I'm only down around $1000. The cars are out there, it ain't hard. Hell, I even got factory 99 service manuals on ebay for $50.
     

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