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While I had the motor out, I wish I would have….?

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  1. #1
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    While I had the motor out, I wish I would have….?

    So I’m planning on doing a transplant of a LS1 & 6speed from a 98 z28 (not exactly low millage 140k) to a 63 vette (details on that are for another thread, this one is motor mods specific)

    Car runs great, drove it home 3+ hours with no issues. Transmission will be gone through, but that is a different thread also.

    So I will have the motor out, what should I do to it, while it is out?
    I may not do all these, but wanted to sorta start a list of stuff I should/might do. I’m not going for huge power, but a few bumps in power would be nice, and down the line a 100-150 shot of nitrous may find its way onto the car (I have pretty much everything but the plate laying around)

    So far I have these
    Will do:
    Front and rear main seal
    High volume oil pump
    Lifter trays (heard they were plastic and could be brittle?)
    Some plastic oil plug thing in the back of the motor?
    Check the oil pan gasket/oring
    Head bolt/studs (not sure which)
    Rod bolts


    Might do:
    Heard that some LS6 take off stuff was a good/cheap upgrade? Cam, roller lifters (would I need to change the valve springs also?) and intake?
    Or maybe a trickflow intake?
    Maybe different cam?
    Larger TB (maybe another LS6 thing?)
    Timing chain? Should I? (I assume yes)

    Anything else I should do to the heads? Or to the bottom end? Change any bearings?
    I assume new head gaskets? (I read they could even be reused after pulling the heads, but I’m new to that)

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    Adding to the list. Radiator/coolant flush. Plugs. Wires?

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    Veteran 0rion's Avatar
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    budget at some point has to play in there........some of the stuff you're asking about adds up real quick. I think you have to pick your battles. I mean there's no sense in doing head bolts or gaskets unless you're swapping heads and if you're swapping heads I would do a heads/cam kit which swaps out the heads,cam, and valvetrain. You could do a cam without doing the heads but you would still need to do the valvetrain. Those lifter cups really don't need to be addressed IMO unless you're swapping stuff out. I'm still on my stock cups even after the heads/cam. I mean most of this just boils down to what you want out of the motor and how much you're willing to spend. It gets expensive. Also either way you're going to need a tune so add on another $500-$600 for that depending on where you go.

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    Probably not going to replace the heads. Right now just getting option, and what should I really do now. Like since I have the motor out, and going to need programming, doing a cam is easier and only cost about 200-300 more right? So I don't have to pay for a program again later.
    No huge plans, just nice driver with decent power.
    Mostly looking for things I will kick myself later for not doing now. Like adding a $200 cam starts costing $500 because of reprogramming and more work.

  5. #5
    Veteran 0rion's Avatar
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    you're kinda on the right track there but that cam cost is deceptive......if you do a cam you'll need to do the valvetrain which ends up being in the $600-$700 range for a package from texas speed. It makes perfect sense to do that while the motor is out though and before you get a tune.

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    Spaz is My Mentor SMWS6TA's Avatar
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    I've just finished my motor (for the 2nd time) and I can tell you there's a lot of little things that will bite you in the ass and budget.

    Unless you're buying a used cam (which is seriously NOT recommended) the average cost of a new cam is $375 and for a custom grind $425-$450. Add a set of Cam Bearings as well, another $100.

    Going down your list:

    Front and rear main seal - check good thing to do, but also be prepare for the gaskets for front & rear too.
    High volume oil pump - Recommend a Melling 10295 or LS6 oil pumps for your plan mods, the 10296 Melling OP is a little much for what looks like a refresher build.
    Lifter trays (heard they were plastic and could be brittle?) - Yes they can become brittle, it really is a judgment call. LS2 lifter trays are the stock replacement.
    Some plastic oil plug thing in the back of the motor? Do you mean the Oil Barbell? There is also a galley plug for the front too.
    Check the oil pan gasket/oring - If you get a new pump the o ring will come with it, gasket is a judgement call. Also need to add a dab of RTV in the 4 corners where the front/rear plates meet. It goes between the block/plates and oil pan gaskets.
    Head bolt/studs (not sure which) - like Tim stated wait to do unless you're pulling the heads. If you get ARP studs or bolts I highly recommend 6 point over 12 point. It's a major PITA IMHO dealing with 12 points. Next heads upgrade I'll be switching the nuts over to 6 point.
    Rod bolts - This is mix bag upgrading these. If you do go to ARP rod bolts you'll need to have the rods looked at by a machine shop. It is possible for the new bolts to take it out of round.


    Might do:
    Heard that some LS6 take off stuff was a good/cheap upgrade? Cam, roller lifters (would I need to change the valve springs also?) and intake?
    Or maybe a trickflow intake? LS6 intake (avg price $350) for stock to mild builds is the best intake. FAST intakes are for serious high HP builds. They would be overkill for a stock to mild build.
    Maybe different cam? - The 228 cams are great for a bump in HP/TQ, highly recommended for cruising and DD.
    Larger TB (maybe another LS6 thing?) - Unless you go to a FAST 90 or 102 the stock TB is fine. S2 Performance sells port & polish TB's for $150
    Timing chain? Should I? (I assume yes) - YES, LS2 is perfect for most builds, don't get caught up in double rollers. My 403ci build has the LS2 timing chain.




    Some options and info.:

    You can get a used set of 243 or 799 heads. They are the best heads for stock to mild builds and won't kill the budget. They go for $400-$500 for a set. If you do get a set have a shop look over. Now is a good time to have them freshen up. I paid $180 for new valve guides, slightly mill to have a flat surface, and spring setup for the cam I put in.


    Smart money is to have a machine shop look over the block and rotating assembly. It will make sure the block is in good condition and can handle what your plans are. For the rotating assembly they will be able to tell you if you can use standard size bearings or if a grind and polish is needed. Also they can make sure it is balance.
    My 6 liter block look ok and even showed it was all in spec, however on the #8 cylinder the shop found that it was just within spec. I could have run it but later on it would have worn to the point that it would cause compression failure. So I had it bored to 4.005"


    My engine build thread is in my signature below but here are also a couple of engine builds that can give you an idea of what you're looking at.


    Engine Builds
    http://www.ls1.com/forums/f7/my-6-liter-build-174257/

    http://www.ls1.com/forums/f8/my-8-8-rear-build-165553/

    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!

  7. #7
    Former Mopar Man 2002ssslp's Avatar
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    Are you sure you want to do that to a 63 Vette ?
    My ride is a 2002 Camaro SS SLP #3296 with 30k, LTH, 3" Y, CME, Frost tune, K&N, ported TB, Blackwing lid, Bellows, MSD, Denso Iridium, and 85mm MAF, Bilsteins, Eibach springs, SLP strut brace, Adj. Panhard, TA Girdle, UMI, Pro 5.0, Nitto NT555
    My wife has a 2004 GTO with the rare SAP, 18" wheels, K&N Cold Air System, MSD, Ported TB, Frost tune, Denso Iridium, Flowmaster cat-back, 3200 Yank, 75k

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    Quote Originally Posted by SMWS6TA View Post
    Some plastic oil plug thing in the back of the motor? Do you mean the Oil Barbell? There is also a galley plug for the front too.
    not sure what I mean I just heard there was something plastic that was easier to replace now when the motor was out.

    Quote Originally Posted by SMWS6TA View Post
    Heard that some LS6 take off stuff was a good/cheap upgrade? Cam, roller lifters (would I need to change the valve springs also?) and intake?
    Or maybe a trickflow intake? LS6 intake (avg price $350) for stock to mild builds is the best intake. FAST intakes are for serious high HP builds. They would be overkill for a stock to mild build.
    sounds like an LS6 intake may be in my future... would I want the LS6 TB as well? or maybe look at the S2 Performance sells port & polish TB's you mentioned? (which would be most cost effective for a mild build?)

    Quote Originally Posted by SMWS6TA View Post
    You can get a used set of 243 or 799 heads. They are the best heads for stock to mild builds and won't kill the budget. They go for $400-$500 for a set. If you do get a set have a shop look over. Now is a good time to have them freshen up. I paid $180 for new valve guides, slightly mill to have a flat surface, and spring setup for the cam I put in.
    will keep heads in mind, maybe I will, maybe not...

    Quote Originally Posted by 2002ssslp View Post
    Are you sure you want to do that to a 63 Vette ?
    YES!
    I want a nice driver classic, the dependability, driveablity, improved milage and power. I'm building for me to enjoy the car for a long time. Resale means nothing to me.
    It is also nothing terriby special, the front end is currently in rough shape, and the motor and trans have already been long since replaced. I was first thinking about just adding a fuel injection kit to a normal 350 but found a deal on a whole z28 and LOVE the idea of the hydrolic clutch and a 6 speed.
    Last edited by yzguyfl; 05-04-2015 at 07:54 PM.

  9. #9
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    Just replace the oil pan gasket with a new GM gasket. The stock gasket is riveted in place and will have to be drilled out, if I recall correctly. Careful on reassembly as the front cover, rear cover, and oil pan all have to be properly aligned. There are special tools for aligning the front and rear covers so that they are centered on the crank. Recommend stock GM exhaust gaskets as well with either manifolds or headers. You can swap out to stainless Stage 8 locking header bolts for a worry free installation. I would probably also swap out the stock knock sensors and inspect the harness for corrosion. Again, GM replacements are the way to go.

  10. #10
    Spaz is My Mentor SMWS6TA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by yzguyfl View Post
    not sure what I mean I just heard there was something plastic that was easier to replace now when the motor was out.
    Looks like this:

    Quote Originally Posted by yzguyfl View Post
    sounds like an LS6 intake may be in my future... would I want the LS6 TB as well? or maybe look at the S2 Performance sells port & polish TB's you mentioned? (which would be most cost effective for a mild build?)
    IIRC they are the same. I had one from S2 and was happy with it. If you do go with a new Tb make sure it's cable driven. Drive by Wire (DBW) require some components to make it more and add more electronics to worry over and tune for.


    Quote Originally Posted by yzguyfl View Post
    YES!
    I want a nice driver classic, the dependability, driveablity, improved milage and power. I'm building for me to enjoy the car for a long time. Resale means nothing to me.
    It is also nothing terriby special, the front end is currently in rough shape, and the motor and trans have already been long since replaced. I was first thinking about just adding a fuel injection kit to a normal 350 but found a deal on a whole z28 and LOVE the idea of the hydrolic clutch and a 6 speed.
    I was the same as Keith but if it's not a numbers matching perfect car, I wouldn't be bother to much to do a LSx swap. LSx swaps are becoming just as normal as the 350 SBC swaps used to be. Even more so now that you can build them as carb or fuel injection. As long as it's done right no one should give you any grief. Well maybe the Vette club purest will.

  11. #11
    Spaz is My Mentor SMWS6TA's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pajeff02 View Post
    Just replace the oil pan gasket with a new GM gasket. The stock gasket is riveted in place and will have to be drilled out, if I recall correctly. Careful on reassembly as the front cover, rear cover, and oil pan all have to be properly aligned. There are special tools for aligning the front and rear covers so that they are centered on the crank. Recommend stock GM exhaust gaskets as well with either manifolds or headers. You can swap out to stainless Stage 8 locking header bolts for a worry free installation. I would probably also swap out the stock knock sensors and inspect the harness for corrosion. Again, GM replacements are the way to go.


    Yes they make a tool that when you see it you question why is it so damn expensive. It looks like a flat bar stock with a few holes drilled in it.





    Another way you getting it align right.

    Best when done on a engine stand, a little harder but can be done if in the car.

    Put on the front and rear seals while covers are off.
    Loosely install front and rear covers.
    Dab RTV in the 4 corners where the covers and block meet. You'll see a line.
    Lay the oil pan gasket on then the oil pan.
    Install the bolts.to the pan hand tight.
    Now follow the torque sequence and specs for the oil pan bolts. Remember the 2 long bolts on the back of the oil pan are INLBS NOT FTLBS like the small bolts.
    Now the front and rear covers are aligned to the pan and you can torque them to spec and sequence.

  12. #12
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    Ii
    Quote Originally Posted by SMWS6TA View Post
    Looks like this:
    Click for full size
    He may be talking about oil pressure sending unit behind the intake. It's plastic also and can't get to it unless intake is off or motor out. I would definitely check it after pulling motor, they have a o-ring and can leak.


    Scott, what is that oil barbell and where is it located? Any links to read up on iT? I have a oil leak coming from up on top back of head passenger side maybe valve cover. You can pm me so I'm not tread jacking
    99 Trans Am, SLP Lid, Blackwing filter, smooth bellow, Ported TB, LS6 intake, Ws6 lower ram air box, OBX LT's, Magna Flow cat back, LS7 clutch, Tick MC, Hurst Shifter, Frost Tune, UMI SFC,LAC, STB, PB, Torq Arm, Super Hawk hood, Torq Thrust II, Kee Audio.
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    Wish list.
    Coil overs, Heads & Cam

  13. #13
    Spaz is My Mentor SMWS6TA's Avatar
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    The barbell is located behind the rear plate on the drivers side of the block in the oil galley. Without it you will have 0 oil pressure.


    You leak sounds like the pcv system might be cracked. The hose has a y split behind the intake and once the hose cracks oil can leak from it as well as cause a vacuum leak.

    I truly hate the way the stock system is set up. I changed over to the LS6 valley cover tray and with a catch can and never look back.
    Last edited by SMWS6TA; 05-07-2015 at 01:50 PM.

  14. #14
    Senior Member kingls1's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SMWS6TA View Post
    The barbell is located behind the rear plate on the drivers side of the block in the oil galley. Without it you will have 0 oil pressure.


    You leak sounds like the pcv system might be cracked. The hose has a y split behind the intake and once the hose cracks oil can leak from it as well as cause a vacuum leak.

    I truly hate the way the stock system is set up. I changed over to the LS6 valley cover tray and with a catch can and never look back.
    Yea I did the ls6 valley plate also with a catch can so it can't be that. Back of valve cover look wet. I will pull the coils and look further. Thanks for responding

  15. #15
    Senior Member Naaman's Avatar
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    Might I also recommend an LS7 Clutch?

    I just had mine replaced while the motor was out (104,000 miles) and despite the extra capacity, I detect no difference in the pedal effort. It drives just like a stock car should.

    If all you want is decent power, seems like bolt-ons and the oil pump/timing chain should do just fine.

    Also, FWIW, according to "my guy" (who is highly regarded by the local vets of this forum), the 98 blocks are not good for making too much power. He says that internal modification is not worthwhile on a 98 (he said he wouldn't risk more than 450 horsepower on a 98 - 00 block). Heads and cam with appropriate supporting mods (namely, headers), will put you right around there. My car has heads/cam and some basic induction bolts-ons. It makes 361 at the wheels, which is somewhere around 400 - 425 crank. I don't have headers, though.

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    Maybe. About how much do those cost? And is that just a clutch? Or are there more parts like the slave cylinder that you are referring to? At this point I'm not sure I'm going to pull the heads yet.

    So far maybe ls7 intake & tb, headers and tune might be about it for performance right now. May add more stuff later, but need to get it together first.

  17. #17
    Senior Member kingls1's Avatar
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    Here are some links
    GM Slave Cylinder & Throwout Bearing for 98-02 Camaro & Firebird (LS1) - Tick Performance, Inc.
    GM LS7 Clutch & Flywheel Package for ALL LSx Applications - Tick Performance, Inc.
    Tick also makes a bad ass master cylinder but probably not for your vette you would have to check with them.
    I got mine from gmpartsdirect.com for $418 few years back part # pkc6ls7 but nothing coming up on that now! Maybe you can contact them however their S/H is high so probably be a wash with tick performance
    ARP bolts flywheel and pressure plate from summit racing

  18. #18
    Senior Member Naaman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by yzguyfl View Post
    Maybe. About how much do those cost? And is that just a clutch? Or are there more parts like the slave cylinder that you are referring to? At this point I'm not sure I'm going to pull the heads yet.

    So far maybe ls7 intake & tb, headers and tune might be about it for performance right now. May add more stuff later, but need to get it together first.
    The LS7 kit I bought was just under $500 for the clutch pressure plates and flywheel.
    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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