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THE MOMENT OF TRUTH!!! SHARE YOUR STORY LS1's

This is a discussion on THE MOMENT OF TRUTH!!! SHARE YOUR STORY LS1's within the Camaro / SS forums, part of the Vehicle Specific category; What up LS1's! OKAY I just finished my install of all engine/braking/suspension components. This was the first time I've ever ...

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    Member jb3golf's Avatar
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    Talking THE MOMENT OF TRUTH!!! SHARE YOUR STORY LS1's

    What up LS1's! OKAY I just finished my install of all engine/braking/suspension components. This was the first time I've ever taken on this type of project and I must say it is CRAZY Y'ALL!!! DUDES the moment when you finally put the key in the ignition after ALL the hard work is stressful! (especially if YOUR the one performing the install by yourself!) Luckily (through much prayer and nervousness!) my car started right up and idled on its own....WHAT A RELIEF...........BUT that moment RIGHT before turning that key over is quite the moment.

    SO, for those who have been through this PLEASE share your experiences and what your results were. ALSO add a video if you recorded YOUR MOMENT OF TRUTH!!! I will try to post a video as soon as I can. Thanks and let's hear it!!!
    Last edited by jb3golf; 01-21-2010 at 01:33 AM.

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    Member FullBlack4thGen's Avatar
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    Ive toyed with my car and truck a few times, feels great when she starts up and goes.

    Anyway, what did you do to your car! You cant just say Engine, brakes, and suspension! I want details, lol.

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    Four Seat Vette 10spokess's Avatar
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    Well when i built up my 2.4 in my old ss cobalt and i did the install of the cam and the tvs supercharger when it finally started up after about 3 different injectors to get it to run right... will be having a new motor in the Camaro soon tho so hopefully there is no big problems there

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    Veteran 0rion's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jb3golf View Post
    What up LS1's! OKAY I just finished my install of all engine/braking/suspension components. This was the first time I've ever taken on this type of project and I must say it is CRAZY Y'ALL!!! DUDES the moment when you finally put the key in the ignition after ALL the hard work is stressful! (especially if YOUR the one performing the install by yourself!) Luckily (through much prayer and nervousness!) my car started right up and idled on its own....WHAT A RELIEF...........BUT that moment RIGHT before turning that key over is quite the moment.

    SO, for those who have been through this PLEASE share your experiences and what your results were. ALSO add a video if you recorded YOUR MOMENT OF TRUTH!!! I will try to post a video as soon as I can. Thanks and let's hear it!!!
    I take it you got your steering rack in?

  5. #5
    Exalted Cyclops 67CamaroRSSS's Avatar
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    2002 Z28 A4 NBM
    Sadly now demodded :(

    Where abouts in AZ are you located? I live in Tempe.

  6. #6
    Member jb3golf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FullBlack4thGen View Post
    Ive toyed with my car and truck a few times, feels great when she starts up and goes.

    Anyway, what did you do to your car! You cant just say Engine, brakes, and suspension! I want details, lol.
    You want details!!!!! OK Well here you go:

    Parts list:


    A. All NEW GM specified gaskets/bolts for a head & cam swap.

    B. Professionally cleaned Stock Heads/blue viton seals.

    C. TSP 224R Camshaft on 114LSA.

    D. TSP Chromoly pushrods (7.350) & Updated LS1 Lifters.

    E. 918 Springs w/ Chromoly Aftermarket Retainers!!! I've heard they are more durable than Titanium BUT lighter than steel.....

    F. SS LT's from Ebay with EGR provisions.

    G. Melling High Volume Oil Pump/LS2 Timing Chain

    H. ARP Rod Bolts

    I. 1LE 32mm Sway Bar & BMR endlinks and bushings.

    J. Hi performance slotted & drilled rotors w/matching HP Ceramic Break pads.

    Oh, about the DETAILS, here goes:

    1. Unplug battery, Remove Air Intake Assembly, Remove custom fuel rail covers, Remove LS1 Intake, Unplug cam sensor and Oil sending Unit (& don't smash/destroy the sending unit!! Lift the intake OVER this!!!)......

    2. Begin uninstalling valve covers (of course on 98's the bolt pattern is different and the rear two bolts on these covers are hard to get to) YOUR BACK BEGINS TO HURT NOW BECAUSE YOUR ALWAYS BENDING OVER because THE CAR IS LOW TO THE GROUND and I AM 6 3"!!!! no pun intended on the bending over part SO don't even go there!!! THEN start working on uninstalling stock exhaust from the heads (in my case pacesetter "shorties" ceramic coated headers) Complain, and yell at the sealing because the bolts connecting the stock Y-pipe TO the header collector have NO clearance to perform such a task!

    3. OK, deep breathe......now begin to uninstall cylinder heads and wires (including the important ground wires that bolt to the rear of each head), then pull the heads towards the front of the car ENOUGH to where I don't break the bolts off unknowingly!!! Then I realize how tough it is to loosen and unbolt the rear bottom bolts because once again, the clearance is like -O and is VERY close to the frame/inner wall!! Then must uninstall power steering pump (of course not totally, just enough to hang/strap it nearby so re-installation is easier and the lines stay intact) BTW the outer 15mm bolt is so time consuming!! (one turn at a time LS1ers!!)

    4. THEN all the coolant splashes and spills out all over the piston/bore area and all my bores are so full you could BREAK and TAKE a swim in them!!! Then, AFTER THE FACT I learn it's wise to DRAIN the heads of coolant BEFORE unbolting the heads!!! ( I hate when i get excited about a car mod and just jump off the cliff without asking the following question (s): how high is the cliff?? Is the ground one foot beneath or 500 ft beneath???lol.....) Oh yeah here's a knee knocker: How long might this take me and do I have a spare car just in case it takes longer than I anticipated??!!!!

    5. THEN I start to engage the idea I need to replace my rod bolts because my car is a 98 and everywhere I read it says the Rod bolts are weak and could break at anytime........and OH BOY this mod/change requires A LOT of patience and work!!(especially if your doing it BY YOURSELF!) OK so anyways I now begin to uninstall the suspension components (namely the motor mount bolts, K-member assembly, Tie Rod Ends (had bad, Brakes, brake lines, Rotors etc.... Starter (although that made it easier to unplug the coolant plug on passenger side), the AC compressor.........la di da da da.......

    6. OK now I need to uninstall water pump and REMOVE the Harmonic Balancer!!! YOU ALL know this takes muscle and a lot of strength to not only get loose, but to turn...turn....turn.....!!! FINALLY got this evil item taken off, now it was time to uninstall the oil pan bolts, the oil pump, the oil pan pick up tube, SO that meant uninstalling the cam assembly, (plate, chain etc...) OH and of course this was all done AFTER I uninstalled my Radiator Assembly!!!...which isn't too bad but a helper would have sufficed nicely here....

    7. NOW I have to play MR. CIRCUS HIMSELF as I JUGGLE the balance of supporting the engine to transmission with additional jack stands as to not put unnecessary pressure on this......etc.....Of course you HAVE to lower the K-MEMBER enough in order to gain clearance to DROP THE OIL PAN DOWN AND OUT OF ITS LOCATION!!

    8. OK....finally I have all the above completed and finally I see my Rotating Assembly. OK got my ARP replacement bolts ready, but about 1/4 of the way into this (meaning the second rod) I begin to round of the ARP BOLTS!! I'm thinking what have I done now????? I'm using the 10mm 12 point socket just as I've read people have done in the past.(of course I ignore this and try to continue the install (yes I'm an idiot)....So I panic and dial up SARGE and get his advice...I even posted a thread on this!!! (thanks ORION for the help bud)

    Finally I realize it's not a 10mm its a 12 point 3/8!!!!!! Luckily i didn't damage any bolt as the 3/8 worked to perfection and I was able to get the 3 passes made of 45 ft/lbs to ALL bolts. And of course every other bolt or so i had to get up and TURN THE ENGINE OVER at the Crank!! Anyways after the drama and adventure, I finally got the ROD BOLTS changed!!!!

    9. Now I make sure I apply sealant to the 4 corners of the Oil pan as specified by GM where it mates with the block AND the timing cover.

    10. For the Cam, I BETTER get my DOTS lined up!!!! After adjusting the gearing cam/chain several times, it finally lined up....gotta love this.

    11. OK now time to re-assemble newly cleaned and freshened cylinder heads. Install went pretty good, but it can be difficult depending on what valve spring compressor you use. Luckily my heads were off/out of the engine so this wasn't too bad. Also installed NGK TR55's......

    12. OK time to install Heads!!! First I need to make sure I bolt the grounded wires that hook up to the rear of each head. OH NO!!!! I just pulled my driver's side head towards the front of the car to see if my connections are tight and SNAP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!There goes one of my grounds broken in half from this, and now I must go to Checker auto parts and match up the right sized ground, splice and make this all work again. OK done, not to difficult.

    Now I must make sure Head bolts are torqued correctly, I bought torque angle meter gauge BUT ended up using the permanent marker method and using the gauge as a guide. Thank God for breaker bars!! This makes this relatively easy outside of the last rear/inner bolts....

    13. Now time to install LT's!!!! BUT WAIT!!!! I purchased Ebay SS LT's (JVT-brand) of which were dirt cheap so I KNEW I would have some issues, and of course here they are: NO header clearance on the driver side, can't bang in the k-member piece that's causing this, so I decide to have some mallet fun and re-shape the part that's rubbing, end up taking this AND the passenger side to exhaust shop to have an additional weld put on for additional reinforcement since I heard so many guys were having problems with the passenger side EGR tube just breaking off under normal driving conditions.

    Then I used Stage 8 locking header bolts for the passenger side SINCE this side is so difficult to access once you button everything back up. Luckily since the engine was still lowered from the Rod Bolt install, this made clearance much better here. BUT I figured out the Driver Side Header was not correctly lined up to match the heads!!! (yes, you get what you pay for-I know) So I have to end up making an adjustment and downsizing to a shorter header bolt that will be short enough to seat and seal the headers but not long enough to the point THAT they wont seat all the way down because of the upward angle........ OK Finished!! BUT WAIT!! What's up with the driver side O2 sensor location?????? I'm talking at the 7 o'clock position!!!! That will hit, bang, and not work on a lowered car. OK done with the headers!!

    14. Now unto Manifold, water pump, power steering pump, A/C compressor and Radiator Assembly. Finally the engine bay is starting to look like........an ENGINE BAY!!!!! Well how about that.


    15. OK. FINALLY THE ENGINE IS DONE!!!!! It took me about 5-7 weeks on and off to get this done.

    16. Now unto the Suspension!!!! First off I have bad bushings on my Tie rod ends so I go to you tube and figure out how to remove and install this. OK got those done, nothing to difficult there. Then it's time to re-assemble suspension assembly and line up the K-Member correctly.....THIS IS A BIG DEAL. Once the K-Member lines up, everything else (A-arm, Tie rod ends, Sway bar end links and everything else lines up and prepares us for the brake system).

    17. OK unto the Brakes. Well, I'm one man (duh!!!!) so I purchase the one man brake bleeder kit...lol And then read up on how to install the brake assembly. Overall pretty cool assembly, and a lot learned about how the braking system works and what is needed to get your brakes ready BEFORE you even start the car!!! (including applying "stop brake squeal
    compound to the OUTER brake pad area to reduce squeaking) Cool......OK done with the brakes and HEY CAN I SAY I'M ALMOST HOME FREE??!!!


    18. SO here we go......BUT WAIT!!! I THINK I NEED TO USE THE BATHROOM!!! I'M JUST TOO NERVOUS!!! OK enough of that......so I turn the key and it hesitates for a second and then BOOM!!!!! The car actually STARTS RIGHT UP AND IDLES RIGHT AT 900 rpms...........The oil psi jumps to 60 within 2 seconds!!!! I CANNOT BELIEVE IT. It's idling at factory specs!!!!! OH did I mention I just woke up my whole neighborhood??!!! (it's 10pm local time and I have open headers!!!!!!)

    How's that for details?
    Last edited by jb3golf; 01-21-2010 at 04:55 PM.

  7. #7
    Member jb3golf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 10spokess View Post
    Well when i built up my 2.4 in my old ss cobalt and i did the install of the cam and the tvs supercharger when it finally started up after about 3 different injectors to get it to run right... will be having a new motor in the Camaro soon tho so hopefully there is no big problems there
    Wow nice to hear man. Big installs there. Glad it worked out for you. BUT I bet your VERY first time doing a big install was crazy nervous at key starting time, right????

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    Member jb3golf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 0rion View Post
    I take it you got your steering rack in?
    YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Finally it went in after arguing with it, I swear this was like a relationship: back and forth, I think I got it, Oh no I don't!!!! Ok I got it!!! NO I don't!!!????? BUT yes it finally lined up and I appreciate the members here. One member told me to uninstall the top bolt and loosen the whole linkage. This proved to give me just enough freedom to line everything up. In fact I drove it yesterday and today and the steering is RIGHT on.......

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    Member jb3golf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 67CamaroRSSS View Post
    Where abouts in AZ are you located? I live in Tempe.
    Cool, I live in Southern Arizona.....think Ritz Carlton/Dove Mountain......or PGA Tour Match Play area. Not quite in THAT neighborhood, but close.......

  10. #10
    Something Diabolical... chuckie669's Avatar
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    Wowzers!!! Your a pro now.

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    Member jb3golf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chuckie669 View Post
    Wowzers!!! Your a pro now.
    Hey Thanks. That's some props I'll gladly take since I now owe my wife like 100 dates for all the long nights I was slaving away!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!lol

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    Four Seat Vette 10spokess's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jb3golf View Post
    Wow nice to hear man. Big installs there. Glad it worked out for you. BUT I bet your VERY first time doing a big install was crazy nervous at key starting time, right????
    Omg cant even say i was nervious... you could say that i would shit myself if my daily driver didnt work and i would have to miss another day of work... it sucked. Thats the last time i work on my daily driver without having a back up car. At least now i just use a crown vic from the station when i work on my ss

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    Member jb3golf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 10spokess View Post
    Omg cant even say i was nervious... you could say that i would shit myself if my daily driver didnt work and i would have to miss another day of work... it sucked. Thats the last time i work on my daily driver without having a back up car. At least now i just use a crown vic from the station when i work on my ss
    Nice!!! Yeah, luckily for me I have a take home vehicle for my job as well so that certainly made this project at least "doable"..........

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    Four Seat Vette 10spokess's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jb3golf View Post
    Nice!!! Yeah, luckily for me I have a take home vehicle for my job as well so that certainly made this project at least "doable"..........
    when you going to put vids up

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    Member bsteff's Avatar
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    I'm in Tucson

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    Exalted Cyclops 67CamaroRSSS's Avatar
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    2002 Z28 A4 NBM
    Sadly now demodded :(

    I notice you had to replace quite a few items. How many miles are on your 98?

    Mine has 180,xxx and runs like a champ.

  17. #17
    Member jb3golf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 10spokess View Post
    when you going to put vids up
    I'm working on it.....meanwhile here's a pic of the semi-finished product (engine bay) let me know your thoughts: http://www.ls1.com/forums/picture.ph...pictureid=1778

  18. #18
    Member jb3golf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 67CamaroRSSS View Post
    I notice you had to replace quite a few items. How many miles are on your 98?

    Mine has 180,xxx and runs like a champ.
    My vehicle has only 62,000 miles on it!!! Not too bad for a 98. I figured since it is 12 years old and I'm into the engine, I might as well replace some parts that are prone to fail. Your in a good place as your vehicle is running strong at 180,000!!?? That's awesome. I hope to have your vehicles longevity. Is YOUR car all stock internals??? If you've made changes, what are they??? How do you drive your vehicle in terms of harshness, oil change intervals etc.....?

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    Member jb3golf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bsteff View Post
    I'm in Tucson
    Cool, what mods have you performed on your vehicle??

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    the picture didnt show

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