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Just a cam? or other mods?

This is a discussion on Just a cam? or other mods? within the Internal Engine forums, part of the LSx Technical Help Section category; Can i get away with just a cam and a tune? I have a 98 WS6, its an automatic with ...

  1. #1
    Junior Member hardmanws6's Avatar
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    1998 Trans Am WS6

    Just a cam? or other mods?

    Can i get away with just a cam and a tune?

    I have a 98 WS6, its an automatic with a mild shift kit. I already have a cold air intake, long tube headers and a borla cat back installed. I want to know if i can install a cam, valve springs, and a matching converter, along with a tune and be ok....??

    I want the car to stay fairly street friendly without needing new heads, manifold, throttle body, etc....

    I'm really just looking to wake my LS1 up a little, was told a cam was the way to go. or should I be looking to modify elsewhere? I'd like to stay around a $1500 budget.

    Any advise is appreciated, thanks in advance!

  2. #2
    Spaz is My Mentor SMWS6TA's Avatar
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    Navy Blue Metallic
    98 T/A w/a little mods...

    Yes, a 228 cam will wake up that LS1 with a stall to match and good tuning will give you a good bump but behave well as a DD. You may need new springs but not 100% on which ones. IIRC LS6 springs were good for a 228 cam.

    Your biggest hold black though is the heads on the 98's. You can pick up a stock set of 243's and get better HP, TQ, & more importantly flow over the 98 heads and not break the bank. I picked up my used set for $400. I spent $160 at a machine shop to make sure they were flat, did a valve job and set up my springs. Basically made them a brand new set.

    You being a 98 I highly, no can't emphasis how strongly you need to upgrade the oil pump at this time. 97-99 LS1 oil pumps are know to fail at high rpms and when they get old too (150,000 miles) Go ahead ask me how I know this..... A good replacement is a LS6 or Melling 10295 oil pumps Both ($150-180). Toss in a new LS2 timing chain ($90) as well. You're here doing the work, might as well do that now so you don't repeat later.

    Look for a LS6 intake ($350ish) I know you didn't want to look for one but it will preform so much better over the LS1 that it's worth getting, especially if you're going to get a cam.

    That $1500 was that including tuning? Hate to say it but with doing a cam and a stall a full tuning session will be needed. Those usually go around $500.

    Believe me I understand being on a budget. It took me a year to get all my parts piled up to do my engine and then another 4 months again to replace what broke on start up. my car was on jack stands for almost 3 yrs.
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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, 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.

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  3. #3
    Junior Member hardmanws6's Avatar
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    smws6ta, my budget of $1500 didnt include a tune, i figured that would be $500, so I guess my total budget is $2000.

    I never heard of the oil pump being an issue, my car just turned 75K miles, but I'll have to look into upgrading that while i have the engine apart.

    thanks for the feedback!

  4. #4
    Spaz is My Mentor SMWS6TA's Avatar
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    Navy Blue Metallic
    98 T/A w/a little mods...

    It's what ended up killing my LS1. I was doing a burn out and missed my line lock button to release it and it bounced off the rev limiter twice. I thought I was ok but next morning it started tapping, was praying it was a lifter....not so lucky.

  5. #5
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    Pewter
    There are some mods that are recommended to be upgraded. I would also recommend a good stall before a Cam

    '99 C5 - Full Exhaust, Ported Fast 92, Ported 90 TB, CAI, 85mm MAF, Circle D 4k, 342's... AI 219cc HC Heads & Custom Lunati Cam Coming.

  6. #6
    Moderator Firebirdjones's Avatar
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    I had just a mild Vinci 218 @ .050 cam on a 112 lsa, springs, pushrods, rockers on my wifes 2000 SS. Was a 6 speed car so no converter needed. I tuned it myself with HP tuners. I didn't do the oil pump or any other mods other than headers and off road Y, still stock cat back system. It had 40k miles at the time, when I sold it she had racked up 120,000 miles and it still ran strong. When it had 110,000 miles on it, it made 370 at the rear wheels with a conservative tune and would trap just under 113 mph at the track on stock 275-40-17's with just 3.42 gears in it. I set the rev limiter to 6700 and there were times I couldn't stay off it, lol.

    I liked that baby cam, idled "stockish" and the car still knocked down 26-28 mpg highway.

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