Which LS engine is the easiest swap? Accessory combination

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Which LS engine is the easiest swap? Accessory combination

Postby spyderhunter » Mon Nov 06, 2017 10:00 pm

I have looked at a dozen or more swap ideas and I am FRIED!!!! Are the corvette engines easier than say GTO's? or the Pontiac G8? I want so bad to put an engine in my Mirage this winter,but can't make up my mind which makes more sense finically and time wise.(other than putting back the 'ol 350.) Still really want fuel injection... Thanks for any other information that you guys have given to me in the past, and any help that will get me to make up my mind would make my wife happier to not hear my ramblings about the whole swap. Thanks again.
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Re: Which LS engine is the easiest swap? Accessory combinati

Postby Kenova » Tue Nov 07, 2017 10:38 pm

Any of the Gen III and IV LS engines will require the same effort to install. I believe all Gen IVs are drive by wire. The big difference is in the accessory drive hanging off of the front of the engine but can be swapped from one engine to another, just remember that the damper has to be changed too. There are three different offsets; truck, F-body, and Corvette.
The Corvette accessory drive is the shortest, the truck drive sticks out the furthest, and the F-body is in between. I'm not sure about the CTSV and GTO drives. The A/C compressor almost never fits in it's original position in a swap. Anything with variable cam timing will also push the water pump out another 1 2/3 to 2 inches.
The truck drive alternator sits the highest but uses the most common alternator. The Corvette drive has the alternator sitting lower than the truck but also hangs off to the side a little further but dosen't seem to be a problem in most cases. The Corvette however uses a dedicated alternator housing making it a little more expensive than the truck and F-body alt.
Another common interference problem is the power steering pulley making contact with the frame, body, or suspension but can usually be replaced with a smaller diameter pulley.

The combo I intend to use is a Gen IV aluminum block 5.3 from a truck with a Corvette accessory drive and a LS2 intake manifold to accommodate the drive by wire throttle body. I am also eliminating the VVT and using a LS3 water pump. This shaves almost two inches off of the front end of the engine. Power steering will have to wait.

Ken
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Re: Which LS engine is the easiest swap? Accessory combinati

Postby Monza Harry » Tue Nov 07, 2017 10:44 pm

Spyder, Now this is coming from some one who decided on "Old School" for Money already spent and your reasons [lots of unknowns], but if I changed ships mid stream I would find the best engine I could [be it whatever your choice/reasoning] and then deal with the front drive second. Then that will require making friends with one or all the successful H-Body convertors here and abroad. You Mentioned the Corvette and GTO but don't forget there were F-Body's with these as well as many trucks. Trailblazer/Envoy Rainier(SP?) etc. all with cramped engine bays that may surrender parts to your H-Body's cause. Print out pic's of your engine [in the car] and bring a camera to an auto "Recycler" with a tape measure and have fun! [I have no real explanation why, but I love walking through all that "Junk"] I am sure you will find "Joy" sooner and easier than you think. My LS of choice is the 400+HP LS6 just for the light weight and that HP number is what I think will be all my finished car could handle, I have these counter productive rules and all, Yep own worst enemy! What I am saying [the same as Ken posted while I typed slowly] is no off the shelf [out of vehicle] set-up is near likely to fit, so accept that changes/choices will have to be made! Harry
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Re: Which LS engine is the easiest swap? Accessory combinati

Postby spencerforhire » Wed Nov 08, 2017 7:42 am

I haven't put an LS in an H-body(maybe someday when I use up my massive collection of SBC's), but a local shop that has done a few oddball LS swaps- Pontiac Solstice, Mazda RX7 and Nissan 240 and their go-to accessory drive setup is F-body for tight spaces. Reasonably inexpensive and readily available from junkyards or even new from RockAuto. They even sell a reproduction Camaro low profile intake from Dorman that is way cheaper than anything aftermarket.
The "fleet"-
77 Vega Estate wagon- project(someday)will have TPI305/T-5, S-10 spindles/axles
72 Vega HB Drag Car -383/'Glide/9"(9.35@146.19)(5.94@117.28 1/8th)
76 Vega GT- 400/4spd/9" retired from active duty(rusty)
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Note- the very act of listing all of these has made me realize I have some kind of problem.....

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Re: Which LS engine is the easiest swap? Accessory combinati

Postby spyderhunter » Fri Nov 10, 2017 8:22 pm

I had been looking at the genV 5.3 with the corvette intake, and accessories also. New harness from Standalone Harnesses ($1000) With a tune and the vet intake it should push close to 400 hp. The long blocks with low mileage are affordable, but getting the front drive and harness could cost 2-2500 new. Ouch! Do you think keeping the VVT will cause clearance problems? Without the old fan blade in the way, I thought it wouldn't be an issue, but I haven't measured anything either.
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Re: Which LS engine is the easiest swap? Accessory combinati

Postby Kenova » Sat Nov 11, 2017 11:01 am

spyderhunter wrote: Do you think keeping the VVT will cause clearance problems? Without the old fan blade in the way, I thought it wouldn't be an issue, but I haven't measured anything either.


I haven't actually done any measuring either, but after seeing so many fight for rad and fan clearance I just decided to make the engine assembly as short as possible before trying to stuff it in the engine bay.

Ken
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Re: Which LS engine is the easiest swap? Accessory combinati

Postby RobR » Sun Nov 12, 2017 7:06 pm

Don't forget the LS4 accessory layout. Along with the G8. Might be options
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