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Building a motor for a turbo

This is a discussion on Building a motor for a turbo within the Forced Induction forums, part of the LSx Technical Help Section category; I'm planning on rebuilding my motor this winter (130,000 miles) and want to add the STS turbo kit at some ...

  1. #1
    Member 1986camarojoe's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    99 Z28 04 Corvette

    Building a motor for a turbo

    I'm planning on rebuilding my motor this winter (130,000 miles) and want to add the STS turbo kit at some point. I'm new to turbos so I have a few questions, but mainly I need to know how to build a motor for a turbo, like compression ratios, which heads, cam. Since I can't afford going thru the motor and adding the turbo all at the same time, I want to know if it's possible to build a badass N/A motor and still have the option to add a turbo down the road while keeping the setup the same internally.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Redphoenix1998's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    San Jose

    1998 Pontiac Trans Am

    As far as a good turbo motor goes, you want to look into strengthening and lowering your CR on the bottom while having a top end that breathes real nicely. To be honest it's hard to get a badass high HP NA motor with a low compression but if you don't want to lose to much but later down the road, boost a good amount but nothing too high, then stick around a 9:5 CR. Get a good set of pistons preferably with a reverse dome, Good connecting rods with ARP rod bolts as well as billet main caps for more strength down low. You can get a custom grind turbo cam from Thunder Racing so take a look through their site, one of the sponsors. With a setup like that you should boost about 10 lbs or so safely and make some nice power without sacrifing too much NA without the Turbo.

  3. #3
    Ultimate nothing
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Fenton, MI

    2000 Trans Am

    Are you going to be doing a heads and cam at the same time? You could build a pretty strong NA engine with some small chambered heads then change over to some 317 castings when you go turbo. The connecting rod bolts are one of the weaker links on the bottom end. Good pistons and rods are essential, stock crank seems to hold up to quite a bit. I would save the money on the billet main caps unless you are pushing some serious power and then even if you were going for broke I'd go with a block girdle. Iron block is always a nice option for strength, and used fairly often.

    There are plenty of ways you can go, you just need to decide what your budget is and make a plan. You'll probably change the plan 10 times as you swim through the forums, but lots of folks do that. Just do what makes you happy.

  4. #4
    Twin Turbo Terror anarchy99's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Memphis, TN

    00 WS6 Trans Am

    Better pistons, better rods, Z06 cam, new pushrods, new oil pump, new injectors, new fuel pump, boost gauge, fuel pressure gauge, turbo setup, boost controller, heads, etc.. etc... Stuff adds up quickly. The best way to do it would be to save all your money and buy it all at once, but like I found out in my build, it's the little things that will kill you when it goes to turbos. Engine assembly, block prep, misc. tools you needed, etc, and while that all seems small, the little stuff adds up quickly. Good luck.

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