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Old 27-06-2017, 11:53 AM
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D4RKSIDE D4RKSIDE is offline
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Question LS or not to LS

So, the time has come to take a serious look at what direction Iím going to take with a replacement engine/gearbox.

Option 1:
For $5500 I can get a complete L98/6 speed package from the wreckers. That sounds hard to pass up, but with all the other parts required Iím not sure if it would be the best performance per $ option.

Option 2:
Build an SBC myself. 4 bolt Iron block, high CC alloy heads, preferably forged rotating assembly but cast crank ok for my application.

Iím going to do a full spreadsheet comparison but it could just come down to timing or availability of good parts.

Anyone who wants offer advice in direction, and/or parts I might be interested in, letís get talking below..
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  #2  
Old 27-06-2017, 02:59 PM
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it is always easy to spend someone else's money, so go twin turbo ls for sh!ts and giggles.......
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Old 27-06-2017, 04:08 PM
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I'm big in favour of the LS route. None of it's necessarily difficult, but it does come at a financial cost.

Unlike swapping in another SBC, you'll have to replace a lot of things.

- Just for the engine itself, you'll need to replace the oil pan, and likely the front accessory drives will need to be raised with relocation brackets (the low hanging A/C compressor and Alternator usually hit the crossmember).

- That 6 speed will need a new rear tailshaft as its made for a car with IRS. A solid axle car will need a slip yoke. You can get one from Mal Wood. You can alternately buy a T56 Magnum, but both options bump the price up considerably.

- Headers will need to be swapped out, with cats added. You might be able to salvage a portion of your current exhaust. Pending size and setup.

- Fuel System. Going to Electronic fuel pump.

- Thermo fans

Fortunately for you, everything for your model car has been sorted and is available on the aftermarket. It will just come down to money.
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Old 27-06-2017, 04:31 PM
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Big Block
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Old 27-06-2017, 04:49 PM
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Will you keep efi on the LS?
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  #6  
Old 27-06-2017, 05:12 PM
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Big Block
Big Blocks are for Cavemen

The OP(metrosexual), should probably swing the way of LS, it's what all the well groomed badboyz are running



OP, If you've got the cash for the generation upgrade.....do it.
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  #7  
Old 27-06-2017, 06:31 PM
SBC-68-FIREBIRD SBC-68-FIREBIRD is offline
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The way you say cast is okay for your application sounds to me like you are not after lots of power.

I would be building up a decent 383/406, easily make 500HP & be able to run 11's all day long, not worry about all of the stuff associated with going LS plus have a good looking engine in there
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Old 27-06-2017, 07:56 PM
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The LS is an awesome platform if you want a reliable engine that is cheap to buy out of a doner and makes good power.
But, it depends on what you want. In all honesty, when I'm at a show and I see a retrofitted LS, I'm immediately bored with it.
Firstly.. All those coil packs and fuel rails are just busy and ugly.
Secondly. It looks like the guy who put the car together just took the easy and unimaginative way out on powering his muscle car.
That's just my, perhaps narrow-minded opinion.
Big Blocks.. I love them, but they have been done to death.
Personally, I would BUILD a small block solid flat tappet and killer aftermarket heads, and that can be done so easy today.
All the parts like engine mounts and accessory brackets fit and it would at least have my respect.
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Old 27-06-2017, 08:04 PM
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Big Blocks.. I love them, but they have been done to death.
Wash your mouth out........Turncoat
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Old 27-06-2017, 08:18 PM
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turbo diesel Tom
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  #11  
Old 27-06-2017, 09:15 PM
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smiles per $, hot sbc will win by a mile

Keeping your current accessories, exhaust and bolt-ons will buy you a lot of fuel money
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  #12  
Old 27-06-2017, 11:46 PM
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While its hard to beat the sound of a nicely worked Small Block or even LS, its even harder to beat the fun of a fuel injected big block! caveman or not!

I have a heavily worked small block in the PV and a stock Ramjet EFI 502 BBC in the Camaro.....the Small block sounds awesome and goes hard but it can be a real effort to drive sometimes.

The thing I love about the Ramjet 502 is that I could just jump in and drive it to the shops without an issue but when you want the power its there instantly (I would never park in a shopping centre but you get the point), it pretty much stock (no internal mods) and is putting out approx. 560-580hp/800nm but if you want more then its very easy to get...

In saying that, an LSA is certainly something I would consider for a future build though

The first question you need to answer is what do you want to do with the car? and then what are the 3 things that are most important to get out of the change over...answer those and you will have a pretty good indication of the best option
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Old 28-06-2017, 12:45 AM
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Budget should never get in the way of car emotion ... the LSA at the show got you thinking huh??

Stroker SBC vs LS swap will probably work out similar $$ - bigger SBC HP will need stronger/better components .. LS 2nd hand is unknown and may need some hybrid components ... LS is a better all round platform in my eyes .. I tried to fight off those bloody LS boys with my BBC for years, but as soon as corners are involved

L98 = great std heads .. plus LS have big cam journals allowing big lift numbers to be taken advantage of .. Don't need exotic fuel pump - each V8 Commodore runs a ZL1 spec pump .. may need hybrid wiring .. TR6060 needs tunnel cut

probably easier to pop round with some beers and I'll give you the guided tour
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Old 28-06-2017, 06:25 AM
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How much do you plan on driving honestly? If like Chris your going to do some serious k's I would go LS. If it's just a weekend cruiser I'd stick with the small block.
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Old 28-06-2017, 11:28 AM
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D4RKSIDE D4RKSIDE is offline
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Such good reading, thanks guys.

Too many responses to reply to so I'll try summarise up a bit.

No BBC as I don't want an anchor at the front. I'm enjoying being able to turn the car .
Chasing around 450-500hp and after some reading last night I realise that's the limit of a cast crank (SBC), I don't like the thought of being at the limit and ceiling of performance (for future upgrades) So I guess forged is the go if taking the SBC route (bugger, more $$$).
I don't drive to work in it, but I still love that I can currently jump in, start it right up and make it to my destination, no matter the weather. So that's up on my priority list.
Also up on the priority is kicking a Mustang off it's Apocalaps perch.
Visually I know the LS is the least attractive, but this is on the lower end of my concerns. It's not a show car and I'd much prefer driving than cleaning.

I'll check with Adam about the tunnel as he did the commo driveline conversion and from memory he didn't have to change accessories or tunnel, I think.
I found a slip yoke conversion for the TR6060 but it's $2k! I would hope the drive shaft be cheaper than that.

Twin turbos? Hopefully one day.. Before we all go electric (I just vomited a little)

Any tips on what to consider with the chev blocks themselves? 400 have water issues? standard GM blocks have enough wall? etc.
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