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2002 WS56 Mods

This is a discussion on 2002 WS56 Mods within the Firebird / WS6 forums, part of the Vehicle Specific category; Hello folks, I am about to purchase a 2002 WS6. This is my first LS1 and I want to fix ...

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    2002 WS56 Mods

    Hello folks, I am about to purchase a 2002 WS6. This is my first LS1 and I want to fix it up. Just have a couple of questions. What are the best mods to do on these cars? Can someone point me in the right direction as to which upgardes and so forth. The car already comes with a SLP lid, so scratch that off. It is an automatic so I want reinforce it and use a torque converter. Basic bolt ons for now. Eventually have the motor stroked. What is the best stroker Kit to achieve 500hp/500 tq all motor?
    Thanks for the help.

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    '02 WS.6 / '07 Suburban

    Welcome! You can hit 500 h.p. without anything on the lower end with these motors. Trick Flow makes a nice head and cam package that'll get you there. Before you start throwing money under the hood, you'll want to add subframe connectors, lower control arms and say a prayer for the 10 bolt. I run a Performabuilt Level II Pro Race transmission and 3,200 stall rated torque converter in our car. The converter really makes the car move - I dropped around 3-4 tenths at the track just with the new trans and converter.

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    Can the stock tranny hang with 450+ hp/tq? And us your tranny a total different one or reinforced stock?

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    What brand lower control arms, subframes, springs, and shocks/struts do you recommend?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bigshow1977 View Post
    Can the stock tranny hang with 450+ hp/tq? And us your tranny a total different one or reinforced stock?
    It is a built 4L60E, which is the stock transmission in these cars. Stock trans is rated for right around 350 hp, so if you plan on using that extra horsepower and torque you should include an upgrade in you build.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bigshow1977 View Post
    What brand lower control arms, subframes, springs, and shocks/struts do you recommend?
    I always recommend UMI - built right here in PA. Great guys to deal with and their parts look good, fit perfectly and absolutely enhance your car's handling and ability to put the power to the ground.

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    Senior Member raynor139's Avatar
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    UMI is great is stuff. If your on a budget look at Founders Performance they make alot of the basics. Springs look at ones like Strano or BMR that are more performance based then just a lowering kit. Koni covers shocks from basics up to autocross type stuff plus there sale is going on during the summer months.

    I just rebuilt my entire suspension setup this past couple weeks. Used a combination of everything I mentioned except for BMR.
    Mods - Lid, Skip Shift Eliminator, MGW shifter, UMI SFCs, Founders Lower Control Arms, Founders Panhard Bar, Founders Adj. Torque Arm, UMI Torque arm mount, MWC Drive shaft safety loop, KONI Yellows, Strano Springs, Strano Sway bars, UMI Upper and lower A Arms, 160 thermostat, TSP headers and TSP true duals Monster stage 2 clutch, racetronix fuel pump, Strange S60 rear axle and tune by Frost.

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    Quote Originally Posted by raynor139 View Post
    UMI is great is stuff. If your on a budget look at Founders Performance they make alot of the basics. Springs look at ones like Strano or BMR that are more performance based then just a lowering kit. Koni covers shocks from basics up to autocross type stuff plus there sale is going on during the summer months.

    I just rebuilt my entire suspension setup this past couple weeks. Used a combination of everything I mentioned except for BMR.
    Thanks. How much did your car lower?

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    Quote Originally Posted by pajeff02 View Post
    It is a built 4L60E, which is the stock transmission in these cars. Stock trans is rated for right around 350 hp, so if you plan on using that extra horsepower and torque you should include an upgrade in you build.

    So they will send me all day he parts I need to rebuild the tranny?


    I always recommend UMI - built right here in PA. Great guys to deal with and their parts look good, fit perfectly and absolutely enhance your car's handling and ability to put the power to the ground.
    What exhaust do you recommend? Long tubes and true duals to the back?

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    Does performabuilt s nod you all the parts needed for the rebuild?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bigshow1977 View Post
    What exhaust do you recommend? Long tubes and true duals to the back?
    True duals take up a lot of real estate under the car. Long tubes and a cat back are a tried and true combination on these cars. Our car has Kooks LT's and Y, and a Magnaflow catback with an electric cutout installed in the mid-pipe.


    Quote Originally Posted by Bigshow1977 View Post
    Does performabuilt s nod you all the parts needed for the rebuild?
    They build and sell transmissions. I am not sure if they sell parts, however, you can check their website.

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    Senior Member raynor139's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bigshow1977 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by raynor139 View Post
    UMI is great is stuff. If your on a budget look at Founders Performance they make alot of the basics. Springs look at ones like Strano or BMR that are more performance based then just a lowering kit. Koni covers shocks from basics up to autocross type stuff plus there sale is going on during the summer months.

    I just rebuilt my entire suspension setup this past couple weeks. Used a combination of everything I mentioned except for BMR.
    Thanks. How much did your car lower?
    I didn't think to do a before and after but it's probably around 1.5 or slightly more. The s60 rear made the back sit really high before. So it seems it dropped more then the front. But that could be an optical illusion. Front has after market a arms too so that could have caused more of a drop then stock would have also. So far only problem I've had is the exhaust caught a speed bump barely.

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    Kooks true duals are the best fitting 3" system but your gonna be around 2k for headers and exhaust. These still take up alot of room compared to y pipe cat back setups. And needs a piece to modify the location of the panhard bar so you can fit the pipes over the axel.

    The hooker Blackheart system fits just as well as a y-pipe and cat back system. But it's only a 2.5" system and has to be modified to fit longtubes since it was designed around the stock manifolds.

    I have the Texas Speed setup. It's the easiest to fit on the car since it dumps at the rear axel. Also loudest and the cheapest option. But takes up the most room under the car.

    TSP setup was bought at the time because I already had tsp headers and a magnaflow setup. Parts of the magnaflow stuff kept coming apart so I needed something quick and inexpensive since it wasn't a planned purchase. Now that the car is no longer a daily driver a kooks setup is in the plans eventually. But I'm not rushing that got plenty of other stuff to replace and upgrade first.

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    OP, do you have a budget? Or is the sky the limit?
    Lid, Throttle Body, LS6 Intake, Heads, Cam, Magnaflow, LS7 Clutch, SFCs, STB, Panhard Bar, Strano Springs, Hollow Sway Bars, Poly/Roto LCAs, Konis, MGW Shifter

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    ^^ Darn good question. I have invested more in mods than it cost to purchase the car 8 years ago.

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    I am in the same boat. I am a budget person, but I will buy quality items. PaJeff02's first recommendation is spot on. These cars are best when built from the rear axle to the engine. There is a girl local that has a black '02 Firehawk and she killed her transmission recently by doing a few donuts. These machines don't like abuse in stock form. I try and tell myself that but I still take mine to the track when invited, and I like to fish tail it here and there when nobody is looking.

    Focus on the suspension first. Work your way to the engine bit by bit. Better yet, if it needs any maintenance updating, do that first. I want to bleed and upgrade my brakes, and get fresh new coolant in mine. Start there, and be assured your tires are healthy and safe. A lot of folks neglect fun cars which gets fatal and troublesome.

    For suspension, subframe connectors will stabilize the body and reduce flexing, helping keeping things tighter/solid, and reduce age and wear. There are bolt-in options and weld ins, I would go bolt-in as I don't like the idea of welding. Lower control arms, and a torque arm relocated off of the transmission will help with a solid launch and speed. lowering the car with good springs as mentioned will help it handle and look nicer, and feel great when paired with quality shocks. I recently bought 20k old Bilsteins with Eibach ProKit springs because I couldn't fork out the money for Koni shocks and Strano springs ( and I couldn't pass up the deal ). With lowering, you will need adjustable lower control arms and an adjustable panhard bar to align the rear end.

    For exhaust, I have always loved the GMMG catback on these cars. I sourced one on a facebook f-body craigslist page and made it a vacation trip to Atlantic City last summer. Cleaned it up and put quad tips on it, I absolutely love it. Here is a video.


    Search YouTube for the sound/tone that appeals to you. I would recommend Borla, Magnaflow, GMMG/Madhammer, Bassani, and SLP. Stainless steel and direct flowing. With my posted video above, this guy has the longtube header, or/y, and GMMG combo that I want. To me this sounds perfect.


    In the deal I got a new Texas Speed Performance 3" off-road-Y, and QTP stainless longtube headers. I have a gathering list of stuff to do for install day ( spark plugs, wires, poly engine mounts, LS6 intake 'hopefully', EGR and Air Pump delete. And a tune to tie it all in. The extra 25 horse that should put out is more than enough than I want to throw at the 8.2" 10 bolt wreak rear end.

    Happy modding and updating, enjoy your car!
    2000 Trans Am WS.6 M6

    SLP lid & bellow w/ K&N, GMMG catback w/ Corsa Clones, UMI SFC, UMI Adj. Panhard, UMI Adj. TQ arm w/ relocation kit, Eibach prokit, Bilstein HDs, Nitto NT555s, skip shift elim, whiteface overlays, 20% tint, matte black decal/overlays

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    Thanks gentleman, I appreciate the advice. I'm thinking about doing it the way you say, starting from the back to the front. Shocks/struts, springs, and lower control arms. A catback for starters.

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    Good plan. Post pics of your progress, please, and don't hesitate to ask questions.

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    Thanks. I would rather buy the top brands slowly one at a time then lower ones faster. So, what are the best upper and lower control arm, shocks/struts, panhandle, sway bars, and springs? Spare no expense.

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    UMI suspension pieces coupled with Koni shocks and Strano springs.

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    UMI, Koni, and Sprano it is.

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