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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Also chronicled on the 3rd generation forum, but I'll go ahead and summarize it here as well since it qualifies.

This, of course, would be the "other woman" to the "namesake". My wife doesn't mind, because she knows if I'm spending time with the car, she knows where she can find me. The '57 has proven to be very tolerant about this "open relationship" as well.

It actually started in 2007 with my wife asking, "What would your dream car be?" Well, several things went through my mind, but what I determined to be common factors were LSx engine and manual transmission. Vettes? Too cliche. '04-'06 GTO? That seemed to hold more promise, but they are heavy and a bit pricey. 4th gen f-body? Maybe. Well, I thought, why not just put an LS1/T56 in my Berlinetta? So, that was agreed, and a drop-out from a 2000 Camaro SS was located and purchased.

After it arrived and occupied the garage stall previously owned by my wife's Buick Century, I started having misgivings about taking apart the Camaro, especially since my son used it for his drag racing car, and it was my DD. So, I ran the possibility of finding another body to put the LS1/T56 in up to the flagpole, and that was saluted. Long story short, this 2nd '82 Berlinetta was found on eBay in the California east Bay area, and brought home. Mostly rebuilt - probably isn't fair to call it "restored", since the interior isn't factory materials - but it was nicely done, and not having to do interior or bodywork was very attractive. The price was probably less than what it would cost to have it painted.



(That is actually a recent photo, but is the best I have available to post to show its overall appearance and condition).

The original, 304k mile LG4 305 and TH200C 3-speed automatic transmission were pulled in Feb '08. The "plan" was to have it ready for a stick shift class at the track for the start of the season in April, but that proved ridiculous. I had a pretty long grocery list made out - LS1/T56, obviously, but it was an original auto trans car, so needed clutch pedal and hydraulics installed. UMI subframe connectors and Wonder Bar, disk brake rear with new Eaton posi, 4.10 aftermarket gears and 28-spline axles, aluminum support cover. Unique G-Force "ladder bar" conversion rear suspension to eliminate the torque arm (mostly to free up room for dual exhaust). Long tube 1-3/4" primary headers w/2-1/2" collectors ceramic coated. LS6 intake manifold. LS7 clutch assembly from sdparts.com. Front engine swap mounts from Spohn, tranny crossmember from Skulte Performance that accommodates routing exhaust under it without sacrificing ground clearance. LS1 f-body plastic tank and pickup/pump (which meant running new fuel lines, especially since the car was originally carb'd with engine mounted mechanical pump). A Covan instrument panel was procured with aftermarket gauges.



With work travel, illness in the extended family, and racing, work progressed slowly. The K-member had to be notched for AC compressor and oil pan clearance. Pedals mounted, holes cut in the firewall for clutch MC, fuel lines routed.





 

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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
Finally, a year after the original engine and transmission were pulled, the day we all waited finally arrived:





Still, a lot of work remained. None of the wiring had been started yet. I didn't have the fuse/relay center from the donor car, but found a nice swap unit on eBay that took the place of the original vapor canister (the LS1 tank has the vapor system built into it):



I had to suspend work after March to get the '57 ready for the '09 racing season. I did some work in May and November, but it pretty much sat neglected until Jan '10. After that, things started to come together fairly well (cold weather and cold garage notwithstanding). With the chassis wiring completed, the PCM was mounted under the dash on the passenger side, requiring new holes in the firewall.



Can you find the PCM harness?



After that was done, the instrument panel was assembled. I chose to go with an electronic speedometer and programmable fuel gauge, which weren't available in the same brand as the others that came with the panel.



Chassis and PCM wires were located and routed to the instrument panel, and it was starting to look like a car again.

 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Finally, in the middle of March, that blessed day arrived. No cooling system, air intake just cobbled together, but we just couldn't wait:




The final details were tackled in the following weeks - cooling system installed, power steering hooked up, air intake fashioned, interior reassembled.










The car was loaded up on a borrowed trailer for transport to a shop for mandrel bent duals with Magnaflow spun cats and Aero Turbine mufflers.



When it is done (probably next week some time), it will have the cooling system and crankcase flushed, race-worthy fluids installed, brakes re-bled, and a few other small things addressed (like calibrate the speedometer and fuel gauge). The plan is to start driving it to work, and on April 25th, start a new chapter in my racing life - the Stick Shift class. . .

I'll try to get pics of the undercarriage when the shop is done with the exhaust, and provide other updates as data becomes available.
 

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That project or what you call the second wife turned out awesome man. Under the hood looks like GM intended it to be there aside from the long tubes of course, but overall outstanding job man. I'm gathering parts for an LS swap into my S10 that I currently have a TBI injected V8 in right now. I think I may do a right up like yours on it if anyone is interested that is.
 

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I love all 3rd gens but a 3rd gen with a lsx swap is a happy marriage I plan on doing a ls3 in one of mine looks real clean
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I'm gathering parts for an LS swap into my S10 that I currently have a TBI injected V8 in right now.
My son has a '96 S10 and was talking about putting a Vortec 350 in it. I'm thinking a 5.3l LM7 would be sweet. We'll see, it'll probably have to wait until he's done with college, anyway.

The car is at the shop waiting for a gap to open on the lift. I'm chompin' on the bit, wanting to start driving this thing!
 

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Discussion Starter #10
I've always liked them as well.

I've gotten a lot of complements on this one, even from Ford guys. And it hasn't even been "out there" yet.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Well, the exhaust didn't happen (rescheduled for next month). So, brought it home, then took it out for a Sunday afternoon drive:



I really like the new number assigned to me by the track:



Launch and shifting need to improve, but not too disappointed for the first time out (the hand writing on the bottom of the first one is the track scale, including driver and full tank of gas):





Best ET translates to a 12.60 at sea level, and best MPH to 112.7.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Yeah, the first pass was the first time I tried "launching" the car, first time I ever floored it for that matter. I knew it would take some RPMs to launch, but with new clutch, new everything, I kept launch RPMs down around 2000 and just dumped it. It bogged, bucked violently a couple of times, then took off. I wasn't watching the tach, it bounced off the rev limiter before I shifted to 2nd, then I missed third and bounced off the rev limiter again - overall, a pretty humiliating run. But, it was still over 100 MPH. . .

The rest of the runs were launched at 3500-4000 RPMs. It slipped off the line (but I had tire pressure up, wasn't trying to "optimize" it on this outing). I missed shifts on two other runs as well.

I'll get better (I hope) with more seat time.
 

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Awesome car! I love the thirdgens and I miss my old 87 sports coupe. Looked just like yours except t top and red with the lower black body stripe. Are you a member at thirgen.org? I think i remember seeing some posts from you back when i had my old car
 

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Discussion Starter #15

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Discussion Starter #16
I really need to learn how to drive this poor car. Went out to the track again last night for test & tune, track prep was a little weak with all the front wheel drive street tires in the groove, but that's no excuse. 1st pass, spinning the tires off the line, hitting the rev limiter before remembering to shift to 2nd, still ran a 13.54 @ 104 with 2.09 60'. Next pass better 60', but completely missed 2nd gear. Rained out after that (perhaps mercifully).
 

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good job on your project..
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I didn't have my weather station out there that day, but it was probably around 8000'.
 

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Nice build enjoy!
 
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