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 Ls swap or build lt1???

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bowmanator89



Posts : 18
Join date : 2019-04-08

Ls swap or build lt1??? Empty
PostSubject: Ls swap or build lt1???   Ls swap or build lt1??? Icon_minitimeFri May 31, 2019 7:52 pm

Hey everyone so ive had my wagon for a few months now havent touched it while I was saving up for more power. Now that I'm setting on 3-5k to spend on her I'm having a debate. Theres really no problems with the motor but the trans is starting to clunk from 2nd to 3rd. Part of the biggest debate I'm having is in currently living in an apartment in Charlotte so no garage to work on car myself.

Option 1: have 4l60e rebuilt with go fast parts. Swap ported heads and intake on. Order headers to finish off.

Option 2: junk yard LQ4 with 4l80e trans freshed up and put in.

Found a guy local that will do full swap minus tuning for $2,500. Found a motor trans with 138k miles for $2,000.

Motor swap would leave me spending almost max and praying nothing happens to motor or trans over the next few months while building play money back up.

Building LT1 will leave me with my 178k lower end but a rebuilt trans. After headers will come out to right about the same as motor swap.

Whats everyones thoughts thats either played with the LT1 or done the LS swap???
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94Woody

94Woody

Posts : 1685
Join date : 2008-12-02
Age : 44
Location : Belleview,FL

Ls swap or build lt1??? Empty
PostSubject: Re: Ls swap or build lt1???   Ls swap or build lt1??? Icon_minitimeFri May 31, 2019 8:10 pm

Results vary but most times when a brand new top end is slapped onto a worn out bottom end the bottom end doesn't last very long.

Taking a 6.0 out of a van and slapping it into your wagon isn't going to be much better than your current LT1. [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]

Fully rebuild your LT1 and trans. If you want an LS go buy one of the many cars that have one in them already. The latter is something that I will be doing soon.
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Fred Kiehl

Fred Kiehl

Posts : 5196
Join date : 2009-11-13
Age : 70
Location : Largo, FL 33774

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PostSubject: Re: Ls swap or build lt1???   Ls swap or build lt1??? Icon_minitimeFri May 31, 2019 11:26 pm

Putting an LQ4 in your car will give you more opportunities for adding power in the future, and you can drive it without a "tune" if you use the original wiring harness, and computer for the LQ4. The LQ4 is a very reliable, and long lasting engine. With a slight refresh on the engine, and a cam, it will give you a substantial increase in power. Once you start modding the car, you will never stop. The changes may come quickly, or slowly, but you will always be thinking of little things that make the car "yours". I started with a 91 OCC, with a 305 with single exhaust, that had been lowered, and smoothed. I now have the car that is in my signature, with a cammed up .030 over 454, duals with Magnaflows, bucket seats, hydroboost brakes, and now a custom, one of a kind carbon fiber hood. I have done a lot of little touches, that no one notices as well. It has taken over ten years of mostly little things, but has culminated in a very singularly recognizable wagon. It is almost a disease that overtakes you when you start modding these cars. Paint will be done in a couple of weeks, and the seats reupholstered not long after that. Pics will follow.
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bowmanator89



Posts : 18
Join date : 2019-04-08

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PostSubject: Re: Ls swap or build lt1???   Ls swap or build lt1??? Icon_minitimeFri May 31, 2019 11:31 pm

Thats my biggest thought at this point. I want to havw future possibilities with my build but I'm loosing trust in my trans. I wanted to wait tell I could build a LQ4 woth heads cam intake from the start. But I would rathwr take her off the road on my terms then wait tell the trans goes out and I have to get her towed,then hate her and sell all in the samw weekend
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94Woody

94Woody

Posts : 1685
Join date : 2008-12-02
Age : 44
Location : Belleview,FL

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PostSubject: Re: Ls swap or build lt1???   Ls swap or build lt1??? Icon_minitimeSat Jun 01, 2019 11:36 am

bowmanator89 wrote:
Thats my biggest thought at this point.  I want to havw future possibilities with my build but I'm loosing trust in my trans.  I wanted to wait tell I could build a LQ4 woth heads cam intake from the start.  But I would rathwr take her off the road on my terms then wait tell the trans goes out and I have to get her towed,then hate her and sell all in the samw weekend

I know that feeling all too well.

I'm on the opposite end. I've sunk a bunch of money into it over the last two years and it still needs more dumped into it. I don't really want to dump it and will most likely be selling it soon.

I keep telling myself that I am going to get one and just leave it alone but always ignore myself. I bought a pile of them hoping to leave one alone but they all ended up being massive piles of crap that needed tons of work so off they went. That is a theme that runs through these old wagons in general. Previous owners fail to maintain/care for them and they go downhill fast.
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Fred Kiehl

Fred Kiehl

Posts : 5196
Join date : 2009-11-13
Age : 70
Location : Largo, FL 33774

Ls swap or build lt1??? Empty
PostSubject: Re: Ls swap or build lt1???   Ls swap or build lt1??? Icon_minitimeSat Jun 01, 2019 2:35 pm

I am not sure if a 4L80e will fit in the tunnel without a little modification to the tunnel, and the crossmember. You will find out when you go to install it.
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PatDTN



Posts : 42
Join date : 2010-07-28
Age : 63
Location : East TN

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PostSubject: Re: Ls swap or build lt1???   Ls swap or build lt1??? Icon_minitimeSun Jun 02, 2019 7:32 pm

When I sold my '96 RMW I bought a 2009 Tahoe. The Tahoe came with a 5.3 and 6 speed automatic. I usually average between 18 and 19 mpg over the course of a tank of gas. I love the way it drives but I keep thinking how a RMW would do with that drivetrain. Just tossing that out there...
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http://www.patdonahue.com
sherlock9c1



Posts : 2111
Join date : 2009-05-28
Location : Huntsville, AL

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PostSubject: Re: Ls swap or build lt1???   Ls swap or build lt1??? Icon_minitimeWed Jun 12, 2019 11:59 am

There's another option - join LT1 Nation on FB and buy a built motor from one of the F-body guys, then put a more torque-oriented cam in it.  Or buy a built LT1 from a guy doing an LS swap.  That's what I did and got a great deal on a very well documented motor.

For 4L60Es... I've got $800 parts and $250 in tools into rebuilding one right now that will handle 400 fwhp no problem.  Learn how on Youtube.  Or buy one from an F-body guy who's doing an LS swap.  Make sure you get a documented one because otherwise you can't tell what's in it unless you disassemble it. Have the valvebody gone through by a shop who's purchased all the Sonnax test tools and reamers; you'll spend over a grand on that stuff and then have to sell it all after you're done. I had mine gone through by [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] and though I'm still reassembling the transmission so I haven't tested it yet, it was a good experience dealing with them so far.


Last edited by sherlock9c1 on Wed Jun 12, 2019 12:23 pm; edited 1 time in total
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bowmanator89



Posts : 18
Join date : 2019-04-08

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PostSubject: Re: Ls swap or build lt1???   Ls swap or build lt1??? Icon_minitimeWed Jun 12, 2019 12:03 pm

Yeah thats a thought of mine too. I found a mild built LT4 for sale about 4 hours from me ive been putting some thought into.

Just got back from an out of town job moved my wagon and had some oil under it :/ so my time frame might be moved up
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sherlock9c1



Posts : 2111
Join date : 2009-05-28
Location : Huntsville, AL

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PostSubject: Re: Ls swap or build lt1???   Ls swap or build lt1??? Icon_minitimeWed Jun 12, 2019 12:24 pm

Oil leaks are part of dealing with 25 year old seals. I wouldn't accelerate the timeline just because of that.
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bowmanator89



Posts : 18
Join date : 2019-04-08

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PostSubject: Re: Ls swap or build lt1???   Ls swap or build lt1??? Icon_minitimeWed Jun 12, 2019 1:21 pm

500 miles since my oil change and the oil light is on. So at this rate its a pretty good oil leak. Im going to get under it this weekend to see if i cant locate the leak
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bowmanator89



Posts : 18
Join date : 2019-04-08

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PostSubject: Re: Ls swap or build lt1???   Ls swap or build lt1??? Icon_minitimeWed Jun 12, 2019 1:22 pm

I have a few cars 10+ years older than the wagon so to me the car being 25+ yeara old is not an excuse to be leaking anything.
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