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Jonesin'

LS variation help

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I’m looking to go with an LS in the next couple years.  Actually LS engines that come out of different vehicles that are completely different from one another but, are still stamped  5.3 and 5.7. I’m looking at using an LS4 out of the FWD V-8 cars (Impala and Monte Carlo SS).  They are so plentiful  and can be found for dirt cheap. Has anyone used one of these? 

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Posted (edited)

The crank is different, but biggest problem is the different belhousing bolt pattern on ls4.  LS1 and 5.3's are pretty cheap or you can to lq4/lq9 block.

Edited by 1newbie
update

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Definitely! LS 5.3L is your entry level to low end power on demand. I did an Ebay LS1 at 2k delivered years ago. 

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I had an L33 but regret selling it now

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Is there an adapter available for the LS4?

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Just checked Kennedy’s website, there is an adapter for the ls4 and front wheel drive 5.3’s 

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Also checked car-part dot com and they are available under 1000 bucks. I don’t think it would be an issue but there are some differences in the accessories on these vs a rwd engine, mainly the water pump. 

953683CD-A160-4C0C-8A32-CDDDF7A8EC91.png

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Not all ls series are aluminum block though. For a buggy I'd prefer an aluminum block for the weight savings. 

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I’d like to have aluminum also. I’d much rather use an RWD aluminum as my first choice

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This is an interesting topic.  I might be upgrading soon. 

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Posted (edited)

Just use any salvage yard 5.3 (not an LS4) you wont notice the weight difference when you are using the car, your wallet will think you for it. The aluminum LSs are getting spendy and harder to find. They are out there you just have to pay more for them. 

Edited by fortyfour

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37 minutes ago, fortyfour said:

Just use any salvage yard 5.3 (not an LS4) you wont notice the weight difference when you are using the car, your wallet will think you for it. The aluminum LSs are getting spendy and harder to find. They are out there you just have to pay more for them. 

If I can find an aluminum I’ll get it. If not, I’ll get an iron block

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the blazer had the aluminum 5.3 they run about $1000

typically we pick these motors up, new pump new timing chain, change the oil pan to a car style,  change the intake to a car style, change balancer water pump, and add a factory harness, we always use the 24, for drive by wire,

typically motor with harness adapter clutch and headers looking like a car motor is about $3600,  

these blocks can be bored to a 5.7 and then a 383,

this is also what we use for our 454 Darton sleeve builds  

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On 3/10/2019 at 8:23 PM, J Alper said:

the blazer had the aluminum 5.3 they run about $1000

typically we pick these motors up, new pump new timing chain, change the oil pan to a car style,  change the intake to a car style, change balancer water pump, and add a factory harness, we always use the 24, for drive by wire,

typically motor with harness adapter clutch and headers looking like a car motor is about $3600,  

these blocks can be bored to a 5.7 and then a 383,

this is also what we use for our 454 Darton sleeve builds  

What are the good heads to use?

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Largely depends what you are building? If it's staying a 5.3 I wouldn't waste money on heads, if it's a 5.7  ported 243's will be the best. If your a 6.0 a 4 inch bore can fit ls3 heads and if the bore pops up around 4.125 you can start looking at ls7 heads. 

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1 hour ago, Jonesin' said:

What are the good heads to use?

the motor size make a difference, if you stick with the 5.3 the 243 is a good head but it needs to be the NON ls2 head needs to be the 243 made for the truck,

this is due to the combustion chamber size,

if you are changing the pistons it does not matter,

but if you change the pistons, then the 5.3 block we bore to a 5.7 then add the 4.00 crank

the 5.3 block we talked about on the phone makes good power, if you want some more then a mild camshaft under .600 lift with the 5.3 pistons will help out allot, try to stick to .583 or less with the flat top pistons, you can do a .600 but the pushrod length should be no more than .035 plung

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On 3/10/2019 at 6:23 PM, J Alper said:

the blazer had the aluminum 5.3 they run about $1000

typically we pick these motors up, new pump new timing chain, change the oil pan to a car style,  change the intake to a car style, change balancer water pump, and add a factory harness, we always use the 24, for drive by wire,

typically motor with harness adapter clutch and headers looking like a car motor is about $3600,  

these blocks can be bored to a 5.7 and then a 383,

this is also what we use for our 454 Darton sleeve builds  

$3600 gets you a 5.3, ready to drop in a buggy? 

Power steering?

Thanks 

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3 hours ago, aboveall1 said:

$3600 gets you a 5.3, ready to drop in a buggy? 

Power steering?

Thanks 

$3600 correct with power steering all billet pulleys and factory ecm unlocked ready to start, 

New - oil pan fbody, new alternator - new balancer f body - new water pump F body - new power steering pump, new adapter plate - new timing chain

Used flywheel and adapter plates while they last,

Used Ls1 intakes

for $3900 it would come with new bearings and rings and new lifter trays, with head studs and new head gaskets

 

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 Thanks for the info guys! Most likely I’ll just stick with a stock 5.3 for a season after I change the transmission and then have it gone through in the off-season.

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Posted (edited)

I have a stock 5.3l Iron Block  (2002ish) with truck intake with a 2D and it is great. Plenty of power especially to start off with.  A little Grey paint makes it look like analuminum block !!!!

 

IMG_6023.thumb.jpg.1ce387a1173b235fd65d4d4aebeb7feb.jpg

Edited by OneTime12
add photo

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On 3/13/2019 at 12:12 AM, J Alper said:

$3600 correct with power steering all billet pulleys and factory ecm unlocked ready to start, 

New - oil pan fbody, new alternator - new balancer f body - new water pump F body - new power steering pump, new adapter plate - new timing chain

Used flywheel and adapter plates while they last,

Used Ls1 intakes

for $3900 it would come with new bearings and rings and new lifter trays, with head studs and new head gaskets

 

JApler,  new rings, do hone the cylinders? or leave them as is. Just curious. Old school, was hone. If the bore is good, new rings have layer to wear into bore? 

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This would be a used motor with some maintenance like oil pump and chain 

then the parts to make it look like a ls1 

we do not build stock motors 

if we go through a motor it gets rods pistons springs valves ect 

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On 3/13/2019 at 12:12 AM, J Alper said:

$3600 correct with power steering all billet pulleys and factory ecm unlocked ready to start, 

New - oil pan fbody, new alternator - new balancer f body - new water pump F body - new power steering pump, new adapter plate - new timing chain

Used flywheel and adapter plates while they last,

Used Ls1 intakes

for $3900 it would come with new bearings and rings and new lifter trays, with head studs and new head gaskets

 

That's a deal right there!

~jw

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7 hours ago, steinberg55 said:

JApler,  new rings, do hone the cylinders? or leave them as is. Just curious. Old school, was hone. If the bore is good, new rings have layer to wear into bore? 

if you want new rings, bearings ect it is a total rebuild

that would be, New Rods, New pistons with rings, power hone around .005-.010 over, gasket, studs much more,

if you read the other post, for the budget build guy, I get a used motor, check one bearing on the main two bearings on the rod, and add oil pump, and new timing chain, set of wires and plugs

change the pan, to LS car style, new water pump ls car style and all the brackets, add factory computer that you can take to the tuner, adapter plate is new, and I will add a used clutch setup if one is laying around

 

I will not add a cam to a budget build,   some will, I will not,    when we do a cam,  

it gets, new EX valves SS,  new cam bearings, dual springs new seals, new lifters, new head gaskets, head studs, trunnion upgrade, chromoly pushrods,   

just putting in a cam is hit or miss,    we just don't have the extra time to put a cam in then cross our fingers that it will not come back,

the budget 5.3 aluminum is a great budget motor over a V6 or 4cl turbo motor,  really reliable, and plenty of torque

 

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Thanks for the help! Picking this up tomorrow morning. Can’t wait to get it back to the shop!

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EA802B5C-2BA3-4C76-8913-9D3B9AC74A19.jpeg

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