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New to the corvette club. I had a 1995 camaro z28 LT1 6 speed t56 that I pulled the engine out of and started to rebuild. When the machine shops receipts started to pile up I just could not see putting so much money into that camaro. I decided it was time to part it out and a good decision that was made over 2k in just parts. So now I was left with a fresh LT1 .030 bore and forged internals and a good T56 transmission. I looked around on the corvette forums and saw the many people who have done the LT1 swap with a c3. I was sold! I started my search for a C3. I found a 1980 corvette with a running 400 small block and an auto tranny. The body is great shape. It has some rusty floor pans but that will be another project. I started pulling the transmission today and the engine comes tomorrow. I will post as I go along. I would love to here any input anyone has. I have read the many write ups on these swaps but could use some help.
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I am in south Fl. Vero its about one hour south of orlando. Pulling the engine today. Then its time to prep the engine comp. Lots of work ahead of me. Kind of overwhelming. Pictures later
 

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These sites will be helpful

http://www.lt1swap.com/93lt1a4.htm
http://shbox.com/1/schematics_wiring.html

You will need different engine mounts, the LT1 mounts are completely different. The stock engine mounts from your old SB engine should work, but I would recommended just getting new ones as they are cheap. Bolt the engine mounts as far forward on the block as possible. Your a/c compressor will most likely hit the passenger side suspension since you have the f-body accessories. This can possibly be replaced with a pulley, or solved permanently by using corvette lt1 accessories.

Remove your transmission crossmember, as you will most likely have to modify it anyway. I'd bolt the engine in place first using the mounts, then measure to see how you will need to modify your crossmember if you need to.

Once you get it bolted in, if you wire it up like the above sites say, you should have it running perfectly since I assume you kept the computer. If it runs for a second or two then stops, you have VATS issues.

I just finished this swap and it runs like a charm. If you have any questions just ask.
 

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Thank you! That clears up alot. I do have a clutch question(if you have a standard tranny). I have been thinking alot about how to use a hydraulic clutch in my car. I would first need to find a pedal set because mine is an automatic. Then comes the project of mounting the master and slave cylinder. If anyone has any information on how to install the pedals and hydraulic clutch please help and go into detail as my transmission skills are limited. Also being that I live in florida I NEED A/C!! My car has A/C and I know hooking it up will be somewhat straight forward. My question is if I buy th corvette LT1 bracket will I be able to mount my compressor? Thanks in advance
 

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I wouldn't follow my design because it's too off the wall (bubba as most on here would call it). I used the brake and clutch pedals from a 94 camaro and welded them in to fit what I needed, because it's what I had at the time. If I had to do it again, I'd buy a set of manual pedals from a C3 that would fit. Only the brake and clutch though, the gas is the same.

For the clutch master, I drilled a hole in my firewall so that when mounted, the clutch master was angled in such a way that it was inline to the travel motion of the clutch pedal pin. There are two issues that I had to check 1) Pedal travel (Would I have enough travel to build up enough pressure to fully disengage the clutch) and 2) Hydraulic line length (Mine barely reaches). Once I determined the correct placement I welded a bracket to the steering support bracket, and mounted it there. Mount the reservoir above the master cylinder on the firewall and you should be fine.

The slave cylinder bolts into the transmission, so no problems there.

I don't know anything about a/c other than my car won't have it, sorry.
 

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thanks for the advice. I will try mounting the master cylinder like you said. Did you use the same one from the camaro as well? Got the engine out today and confirmed what the previous owner told me that the engine was a chevy 400 (should be worth something for resale). If anyone has anything to add that might make my project a little easier please speak up. Thanks
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Should be a cool project!:thumbsup:
 

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Welcome:cheers:
I hope you enjoy your project as much as I have mine.
From looking at your pictures I would suggest taking a look at your bird cage and inspect the windshield frame. Also take a look at the chassis frame. I thought mine was in good shape but found places that were rusted and in need of repair not nothing I could not repair but needed to be done before a engine install. I am in the middle of it now and am having a blast working on it. You will find that an effort to seal and insulate the engine bay will help cool the passenger compartment during the hot summer months. These cars are bad about heat entering the inside and making it not so fun to drive in the hot summer time. Lots of good info on here about this subject. Good luck and you have come to the wright place for advice.
:cheers:Mark
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks for the feedback. I will look to seal the engine comp. I hqve heard that from a few people. The bird cage is in great shape. That is one of the reason I bought the car because of the minimal rust ( except the floor pans ). It was perfect for this project. Little rust, great body and decent interior. Please keep me updated to any issues you have with your swap so I know what I will expect to run into. Thanks
 

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Anyone know if 77 vette standard pedals will bolt into my 80 vette? Got the engine bay prepped today. I have a vacuum nightmare under the hood. Ripped everything out and starting from scratch. Should be alot easier then sorting through a rats nest of wires and hoses. Has anyone used the electric headlight motors? Might make my vacuum harness less time consuming.
 

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Anyone know if 77 vette standard pedals will bolt into my 80 vette? Got the engine bay prepped today. I have a vacuum nightmare under the hood. Ripped everything out and starting from scratch. Should be alot easier then sorting through a rats nest of wires and hoses. Has anyone used the electric headlight motors? Might make my vacuum harness less time consuming.

Pedals - I'm pretty sure the pedals changed in 1980. Now that doesn't mean '77 pedals won't fit or couldn't be 'made' to fit. Might just take a little bit of creativity.

There are quite a few guys that have don electric conversions. There are some kits that cab be bought, and some have info on making the parts you need along with sourcing the components from the C4s.

As far as vacuum, the system is really not that complicated if you step back and look at the headlight portion. Do you have a good diagram?
 

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Does anyone have any easy pedal conversion? Yes I looked up the vacuum diagram once I eliminate my emissions I think it will be pretty straight forward Thanks
 

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I want to start by saying thank you to everyone on here for all the good feedback I have been getting on my questions. That being said I have alot more. I have a 400 chevy small block engine that came out of the vette. I am replacing it with a lt1 350. Can I use the 400 v belt system on the the lt1? I would like to keep the original alt, p/s, and a/c on the car. Possible?? Also does anyone know the best way to use 77 pedals on my 80 vette or another alternative to putting in manual pedals? What size how long does the new driveshaft need to be? (would like to have it made before transmission goes in) thanks again
 

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The LT1 is completely different from the Gen1 400 you have.

I believe you'll have to use serpentine accessory drive systems that were in place on the various LT1 engines used in different models.

You'll also need a computer and harness to run the engine.

This was a swap I was considering LONG ago. In fact I was going to modify some LT1 heads so I could put them on a SBC 400, and build an LT1 Gen1.

The difficulty was so great, along with the cost of everything, I scrapped the idea in favor of something else. I kept the 400 though, it just isn't an LT1.
 

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I have the computer and harness along with everything else that came with the engine from a donor car. The vbelt would save me alot of time and money if it works. Guess I will just have to pull it off and check. Should know something tomorrow
 

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I have the computer and harness along with everything else that came with the engine from a donor car. The vbelt would save me alot of time and money if it works. Guess I will just have to pull it off and check. Should know something tomorrow




I did the the exact same swap into a 69 chevelle. Your going you have to cut out the transmission tunnle the T56 is 2 inches longer and 3 inches taller than any older gm transmission., Shorten the drive shaft.

Call summit racing and order a PCM for less VATS bypass module if you need help wireing it message me im a pro at thats stuff.

go to t56kit.com. they sell a bracket that bolts in behind the booster to allow you install a clutch master and slaver cylinder for the clutch. All you have to do is take the stock clutch pedal and drill a hole in it to make the camaros master cylinder work.

all of this soudns like allot but its not....and as far as rebuilding the tunnle for the trans , go to autozone and get fiberglass resin and go on ebay and get fiberglass cloth use chicken wire to shape the new tunnle and lay the cloth over it mix the harderner and resin.....wohlah new tunnle.

Also get a 155 gph fuel pump I believe and an aeromotive fuel pressure regulator no matter what anyone tells you the stock pressure regulator with an aftermarket pump wont work. when i did my swap the fuel pressure was so high i cracked two starters trying to get the damn thing started.


hope this helps.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Thats some great information. Thanks for taking the time to help. Very nice chevelle! I have already bypassed the vats. The clutch bracket will save me some time. Any idea if I can use the existing fuel tank? Need to mount my new pedals. Not sure how the zbar works or mounts anyone have a reference?
 
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