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Getting ready to deploy and need some advice

This is a discussion on Getting ready to deploy and need some advice within the General Help forums, part of the LSx Technical Help Section category; Hello all, like the title says I am getting ready to deploy (cant say where) and will be gone for ...

  1. #1
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    Getting ready to deploy and need some advice

    Hello all, like the title says I am getting ready to deploy (cant say where) and will be gone for nine months. After the issues I was having with the goat when I first bought it a few months I think it is finally running about where it should be. So some things about the goat. When I bought it it had a replacement LS1 installed. It came with Pacesetter LT without cats and a SLP exhaust and K&N. I also suspect the gears have been changed out. I can tell the rear end cover has been opened but not sure what is in there. So far I really have not done much with the car other than changing the oil with M1 synthetic and Torco gear oil and fixing the timing issue. The car itself has 116k miles on it.

    So with this deployment will come some extra cash to spend on the goat. I know the suspension is shot. When I put it in gear the rear end squats real bad. So these are my goals:

    -replace the suspension. I would like to keep it at about stock height. I will also be adding in the normal things such as RR bushings and new strut mounts

    -add more power. I would like to get into the 450hp relm. I'm not looking to get into high HP numbers. This is a daily driven car and just want to able to keep up/ occasional beat on newer muscle cars.

    -add more stopping power

    I'm going to probably keep the stock rims and have them powder-coated.

    I'm setting a initial goal of staying around 4k to spend. I am good with tools and feel comfortable doing much of the work myself.

    So with these goals in mind any help deciding on parts and route to go would be greatly appreciated. I will be switching out the pacesetters as I noticed they are starting to rust. Thanks and happy holidays.
    Last edited by Trooper182; 12-19-2016 at 04:27 PM.

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    I should also add that because this is a daily driver I would like to keep the ride feel somewhat docile. I know it will not ride as smooth as my SUV but I dont want it to feel like spine is going to snap lol

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    Spaz is My Mentor SMWS6TA's Avatar
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    Do you know what cylinder heads you have?

    You're on the right track in upgrading the suspension.

    Depending on your heads and a decent cam your best bang for the buck will be a stall convertor match to the cam.





    Take care from a fellow Vet.
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    6.0L Block - Forged 403 built, breaking it in , Polluter Stg3 Cam, FAST 102mm Intake, NW102 TB, MSD wires, NGK TR6 plugs, Truck Coil Packs, LS3 Fuel Injectors, CC Pacesetter LT Headers, TS&P ORY, QTP e-Cutout, Magnaflow Muffler, 104mm Air Lid & Line Lock, Catch Can, Stage 2 T56 w/Viper shaft, PRO 5.0 Shifter, Tick MC, Monster Stg 4 Clutch, QT SFI BH, MWC DSL, UMI: SFC, PHB, LCA's, LCA Relocation Brackets & TA, Hotchkis Springs (1" Drop), YR1 Snowflake Wheels wrapped in NT555 tires & Custom Fab Ford 8.8 rear w/4.10 Yukon Gears, WSQ Hood, 3"CM Strange Eng Drive Shaft.

    Horsepower never lies, but is often lied about!

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    Thanks for the reply. Currently it has the 241 heads on it. Was thinking about finding a pair of 243 heads but not sure. Also thinking about adding a cam into the mix but would have to be something not too aggressive. Like I said this is my daily driver. Im not too worried about fuel economy but not really wanting to drop much more than I am currently getting (12-13mpg) in city.

    Did some research and came up with a starting list of parts. Also found out the previous owner replaced the RR bushings with whiteline ones.

    1. LOVELLS POLY STRUT MOUNTS & BEARINGS GTO – 197.82

    2. LOVELLS/WHITELINE RADIUS ROD BUSHINGS-REAR-GTO—26.82

    3. KYB-GTO-FRONT STRUTS-PAIR—235.50

    4. KYB-GTO-REAR SHOCKS-PAIR—113.74

    5. LOVELLS- 350MM REAR SPRINGS-GTO—229.99

    6. LOVELLS 340 MM FRONT SPRINGS-PAIR-GTO—229.99

    7. StopTech Drilled Sport Brake Kit--573.69

    8. GTO XAIR OVER THE RADIATOR INTAKE—385.00

    As far as headers go, I may just ride out these pacesetter one's until they need to be replaced. Also with the brake package I may wait until I replace the suspension components and see how the stopping power feels after. At the moment it just does not feel like it should. feels like it takes more effort to stop the car. Already replaced the pads and had the fluid flushed.

    So any advice on what direction to go in the power adder dept? And thank you for your service. This will be my 4th deployment. Been in the Army 12 years now.

  5. #5
    Spaz is My Mentor SMWS6TA's Avatar
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    I was Army as well and did 16 before I was forced to retire due to a training accident. The day of I was told I was on the E7 list and would have been taking over our Ops section while going back to the sandbox.

    Loved Ft Hood.

    That's a good list. I have Pacesetters and have been happy with them.

    The brake kit looks like it's just pads, rotors and lines. Nothing dealing with the most important thing...the caliber. Look at the 2005/06 GTO brakes or even a C6 kit. There are a few places that have the conversions for C6.


    Regarding CAM - 243's are good to use if you want a bump in HP but not kill the daily drive. A few places will port & polish them (of course for some coin) that will squeeze out a few more HP. You should have a LS6 intake so your fine there. A 228 cam with 243's and a stall will change the feel of your car. I keep talking about a stall because I'm assuming you have an auto. If you have a manual then the LS7 clutch kit is great deal. I ran it when I was stock and with mild bolt ons and had 0 issues. With my 403ci I now have a Monster stg 4

    Now if you're looking for an occasional fun that won't kill the budget with needing a ton of other parts then you can't beat nitrous wet kit. Your internals can handle up to 125 shot before you need to consider better internals like rings, push rods, pistons...you know all the expensive stuff that after install requires more tuning.

    Speaking of tune - with mild bolt ons hit Tune by Frost up. his mail order tunes are great. Now if you do go with heads and a cam as well as a stall you're going to need to get a tune. Try to do all of those at the same time. that way it's only one time at a tune session. They can get expensive, average cost is about $500 for full dynotune.


    A good thing to do is look up any local LS clubs in your area, they should be able to tell you good tuners to use.

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    Wow sorry to hear that. 16 years is a long time to get put out due to an accident. Hopefully you got good ratings. I'm trying to make it to my 20 year and call it a day. Just waiting on this E7 list to finally give me a sequence number. I'm a 13B section chief. Ft. Hood is nice but 1st Cav drains you lol.

    I like the pacesetters just not the rust issue. I was looking at a set of Texas Speed LTs to possibly replace them. Would love a set of kooks but not willing to drop that kind of coin.

    I will look into the 05/06 calipers as far as brakes go. But first I want to get this suspension taken care of. I feel like it may be part of the issue as far as the way it feels when i apply the brakes.

    I do have an auto. Been looking on ebay and have seen a lot of 243 heads lately. Question I do have is if I buy a set do I need to have them port & polished or can I use them as is until I am ready to get the work done? should I change out the springs etc? So with a 228 cam what would be a good stall converter size to go with?

    I did consider going with a shot of giggle gas but not sure. I had it on my 2011 Camaro and it was fun but can get expensive. That and finding shops that sell it. If I did do it again it would be a conservative shot that would only get used occasionally. I kinda like the idea of keeping it all motor. There is a tuner here in Killeen that I was using but I question his ability a little. He is a good guy but when I was having my timing issues he told me there is no way the timing could be off or I would be eating my valves. Well timing was off and I fixed that. Never have tried using a mail order tune. Was considering taking the car to Texas Speed since they are not that far from me.

    Like I said I prefer doing most work myself. I'm not a mechanic but have learned how to do most of the work I have done by using the net. Not sure how confident I am with installing a cam. I know there is a good write up on it but just not sure if I should attempt it or let a shop do that.

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    Spaz is My Mentor SMWS6TA's Avatar
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    I have stock 243 heads on my 403. I got them when it was suppose to be a stock 6.0 Liter build to get back on the road quickly however when I had a rod bolt failure on start up plans changed because the stock crank was FUBAR. So a few thousand later I got a K1 4" Forged Stroker crank and FAST102 intake. My tuner has said (and I knew it at the time) that my biggest hold back is the stock heads, currently at 450 hp/450tq to the rear wheels going thru a custom 8.8 4.10 gears. I had just needed it up and running again and my wife had given me an ultimatum fix or sell. So when I'm done with the rest of the car and can be in a position to "invest" my tuner will spec me out a cam and heads. He said my only decision is how much hp/tq I want mid to high 500's or 600's. The difference is in staying with LS1 style or going over to LS3 style.

    With a 6.0 Liter block you have those options.

    The TS&P LT's are pretty much an exact copy of Pacesetters. I wouldn't trade them as long as they are good. Would love Kooks but like you I want to take care of other stuff 1st.

    Stall - I would check with TS&P, BTR or Martin Smallwood on what stalls would go with what ever cam you pick. So far as I know stock cam and a 228 cam gets great response with a 3200/3600 stall.

    228 cam - with this cam you're good with your 241 & 243 heads and not need to be too worry about PTV with a stock bottom end LS1. You should still check to verify, the tool is only $20 and worth verifying. Check the help threads and you'll find a lot of info on how to build/fixes for our cars. Also a 228 cam won't require a change of injectors. Springs I've hear of guys using LS6 springs and be fine with 228 cam but if you go with a bigger cam you'll need to match the springs to it as well as pushrods. If you pull the heads invest ($100) in LS7 injectors. Your OEM's are ok but might as well put in fresh if you're going to upgrade the rest plus better now then later on and have to tear it all off to get to them. Some Chrome Moly pushrods too.


    I fully understand wanting to do all the work, I did with mine except the transmission internals. That shit is like voodoo. I do clutches and stalls but internals F that. Plus you have the on base car shop that helps a ton.

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    Senior Member Whamhammer's Avatar
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    12-13 mpg in the city sounds a little rough, did you have a tune with the headers'? Is that like long-time stop and go?

    As an option, Trick Flow has an aftermarket set of 13 degree heads and pair a cam with it (and other replacement goodies), I think it's about $3,000 for the kit.
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    well I live about 10 miles from work and most of my commute is on the highway at 65mph. I'm wondering if this car does indeed have different gears in the rear and maybe that is contributing to my low MPG. I dont really get on the car and for the most part drive it fairly conservatively. I am wondering if the car is running at top performance though. Reason being is the last time I had it on the dyno the numbers were not where they should have been for the mods it has. Only made 303hp/325tq.

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    Senior Member Whamhammer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Trooper182 View Post
    well I live about 10 miles from work and most of my commute is on the highway at 65mph. I'm wondering if this car does indeed have different gears in the rear and maybe that is contributing to my low MPG. I dont really get on the car and for the most part drive it fairly conservatively. I am wondering if the car is running at top performance though. Reason being is the last time I had it on the dyno the numbers were not where they should have been for the mods it has. Only made 303hp/325tq.
    Yeah, that sounds like a stock LS1 dyno . With a lid, bellows, LTs, catted Y, Magnaflow and NGK TR55s, I was at 326 hp/ 330-ish tq. Once I got a Dino tune, it was 356 ho and 360 tq.

    I wonder if you have a bad tune/sensor/ something.

  11. #11
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    Auto's have usually have slightly lower dyno numbers than manuals. That might be the difference.


    10-15 mpg is what I'm getting on my 403ci with 8.8 rear running 4.10 gears. You should be closer to low 20's.

    GR will effect it some but plugs, wires and fuel will effect it more. What plugs and wires are you using? How long has it been since you changed them? Fuel filter? What gas are you running? LS engines need at lesat 91-93 octane to run right. 87 will cause knocking.


    This might help you figure out your gr



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    I replaced the plugs with NGK TR6 4177 back in sept. That was what the tuner suggested I run. Currently it has MSD wires that came with the car. I only fill it with 93 octane fuel. As far as the fuel filter goes, im tracking that it is located in the tank and should be changed when the pump is changed. Could be wrong on this. Tomorrow I will try the video to determine the GR.

  13. #13
    Spaz is My Mentor SMWS6TA's Avatar
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    ^^Wow what a stupid idea. So basically you only have a sock and a bucket acting as the filter.






    I found this thread you might be interested in. It's from a member that has since retired from the forum but was very knowledgeable on the technical stuff.


    Fuel Pump Mods

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    So I did like the video stated to try and figure the GR. Rotated the tire one full revolution and watched the axle. It spun just shy of 4 times so it looks like the car has 3.73 gear. Bonus for me and could also help explain the drop in MPG.

    As far as the fuel situation, considering I'll have to pull the tank from the trunk I am just going to wait until after I get back from this deployment and change the pump to a walbro 255 and change the sock then.

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    Spaz is My Mentor SMWS6TA's Avatar
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    Good choice. I would also do the drill mod on the basket like Sarge did in the thread.

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