Corvette Forum : DigitalCorvettes.com Corvette Forums banner

1 - 20 of 491 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
316 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
NOTE: I lost my old image hosting server in early 2017, so unfortunately most of my images are now missing from this thread. :nuts:
************************************************

It's about time I started documenting the world's longest LS1 swap into a C3. My goal is to show everything that it takes to transform a tired C3 into a modern super car. I welcome any comments or suggestions and I plan to ask for a lot of help in this thread as I finally get started on the engine swap portion of this build-up.

I started this project 2 years ago when I talked my dad into letting me take his '69 that he's had since new. He had a new C6 Z51 Vette and the yellow '69 had become a "shelf" on the other side of his garage. Here's a pic of what it looked like when I picked it up:



We installed an Optima Red Top battery and put some air in the tires and it actually started on the second try. It has a 350 with a TH400 auto trans. More pics once it was out of the garage:




I drove it about 45 minutes to my house and gave her a bath:



Here's an interior shot:



The car was originally Daytona yellow. In '71 it got hit in the front and that is when my dad went with the flares as well as a color change to black. Then in the 80's it was maroon for awhile before going back to yellow. I have a ton of old pics that I will scan and include in another post sometime.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
316 Posts
Discussion Starter #2
The first thing I did was to take the Vette to my local speed shop to get it weighed so I could compare once the swap is completed.



Here are all the parts that made up "Phase 1". I originally had the whole project broken into 5 distinct phases until a leaky gas tank forced me into committing to a whole lot more at one time! I went with the VB&P Performance Plus suspension, a new 3:55 rear diff and Van Steel offset rear trailing arms. I still have the original 3:08 rear diff if anyone is interested.



Here is how it has been sitting ever since September of '07!!

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
316 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
I started with the rear suspension. As you can see, the car was daily driven for over 30 years and all of the bushings were toast.



Once I had gutted the entire rear suspension, I coated everything in POR15 black. The stuff is amazing and really made a big difference in the looks under there. Pics to come...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,497 Posts
Congrats its a sweet looking car. I already have the VBP performanc plus its a awsome suspension will lighten her up alot to You may very well be at 3k even after its all done.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
316 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
3,000 lbs is my goal, however, the 18" Intro Retro wheels and 36lb McLeod SFI bellhousing I just bought are going to hurt me a little. I'm hoping to make up a little with lighter brakes up front but I haven't decided which ones to get yet.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,497 Posts
3,000 lbs is my goal, however, the 18" Intro Retro wheels and 36lb McLeod SFI bellhousing I just bought are going to hurt me a little. I'm hoping to make up a little with lighter brakes up front but I haven't decided which ones to get yet.

If you go with wilwood D8 calipers that are a direct replacment for C3s you will shave off a amazing 44 pounds.

also if you have not already, lose the spare tire and spare tire parts associated with it. Newer c4 or 5 or aftermarket seats can shave off TONS as well.

I hope I am in the 3k Range after my LSswap also, but a 82 has alot more crap that needs to come off of it to.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
316 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for the tip on the D8 calipers. I bought o-ringed replacement calipers from VB&P a long time ago, but I'm sure I can sell them since they haven't been used.

The spare was out when it was weighed, but the holder and everything was still on. I have since removed it and sold it on ebay.

The current seats are from an 80's C3 Vette. They may still be heavy. I will probably go with some Recaro or Bride seats, but that's still a couple years in the future. Gotta get her rolling again first.

I love the '82 Vettes! You will have an awesome ride once you go LS1.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,497 Posts
Thanks for the tip on the D8 calipers. I bought o-ringed replacement calipers from VB&P a long time ago, but I'm sure I can sell them since they haven't been used.

The spare was out when it was weighed, but the holder and everything was still on. I have since removed it and sold it on ebay.

The current seats are from an 80's C3 Vette. They may still be heavy. I will probably go with some Recaro or Bride seats, but that's still a couple years in the future. Gotta get her rolling again first.

I love the '82 Vettes! You will have an awesome ride once you go LS1.
I would trade my 82 for your 69 any day with cash to boot.

I am probably farther ahead than you on it right now. I already have the drive train, and about to have all parts ordered. Should be complete sometime in november.

My downfalls will be still having the aluminun rar with its 2.68 gear ratio or whatever it is, and no brake, wheel upgrade to go with all that new found power and weight reduction. that will come sometime next year.

Also next year in october the LS1 will be replaced with a Stroked LS2 block;)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,038 Posts
3,000 lbs is my goal, however, the 18" Intro Retro wheels and 36lb McLeod SFI bellhousing I just bought are going to hurt me a little. I'm hoping to make up a little with lighter brakes up front but I haven't decided which ones to get yet.
3000 should be easily attainable. Im at 2936 with 1/2 tank and tops on (no driver though).
I have the VBP kit too, but I still have an alu. head sbc.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
316 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
I already have all my parts. I just started the thread tonight from the beginning so I could document everything I've done to the car. My LS1/T56 is from a 2002 Trans Am with 49K on it. I have gone through the engine and replaced all the seals, the rod bolts and all the front accessories. I have all the parts now to complete the swap. I got most of my stuff from Josh (SuperPowers). Speartech did my harness and I got the radiator from Dewitt's that is made for the LS swap into a C3. I went with the coated Speedhound longtube headers. I hope to get all my pics caught up by this weekend so the thread will be up to date.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
316 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
vette427,
I wonder what has my car 270 pounds heavier than yours? Mine also has Edelbrock aluminum heads and was weighed without driver. I'll be happy as long as I can shave some weight in the long run. The LS1 should help and I definitely think I'll be going with the red D8 calipers 82CEtuner mentioned.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
706 Posts
I would trade my 82 for your 69 any day with cash to boot.
You don't have any money left, I am spending it all! :rolling:

I am probably farther ahead than you on it right now. I already have the drive train, and about to have all parts ordered. Should be complete sometime in november.
I am hoping to get it done in October. :whip:


Also next year in october the LS1 will be replaced with a Stroked LS2 block;)
You change your mind on the motor like every 5 minutes, yesterday it was a 383. :lookinup: Just give the LS1 a chance. Then focus on the brakes and rear end. You will be lucky if stuff doesn't break with the motor that I am installing.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,038 Posts
Well, I dont have flares like you, meaning my wheels and tires probably weigh a good amount less too. No vacuum system, no spare tire/carrier, and no power windows/locks/brakes/steering or A/C.

The alum. block from the LS1 should make up the weight gained from the t56 and scattershield. If you are going to look at upgrading the brakes, I would look into something the gives you more of a performance upgrade. There has been quite a few brake upgrade threads recently, specifically mentioning the wilwood SL4 calipers.
BTW... since you are saying you want to make your car into a modern super car, look into a rack and pinion kit. I made one for my car and it totally transformed the way it drives (in a good way :D ) There are mixed opinions on the rack vs a rebuilt stock box or jeep box, but my opinion is to go for the R&P. Looks like you will have a seriously bad ass vette when its all done :partyon:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
706 Posts
I definitely think I'll be going with the red D8 calipers 82CEtuner mentioned.
I am going to put some new Z06 calipers on mine. :surprised I can't wait to get my car painted. So I can start the next round of mods. The list is getting big.

And your car is not the longest running swap project. I have been on mine for over 3 years. :surprised I guess that it doesn't help that I decided to do a frame off right in the middle of the swap, and I have changed engines and changed my mind on about everything. I have finally decided to finish with what I have and then I will start changing things. You think that what I have done now is cool wait till you see what is coming.

Now I will stop with the thread jack. Back to you. You should post some pics of the swap kit when you get a chance so people can see your goodies.
 

·
DC Pit Crew
Joined
·
10,260 Posts
sounds like a sweet project. I think I remember you posting pics of it when you first took it over from your dad. Pretty sweet ride, and it's only going to get sweeter. Keep us updated :thumbsup:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
316 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
Well, I dont have flares like you, meaning my wheels and tires probably weigh a good amount less too. No vacuum system, no spare tire/carrier, and no power windows/locks/brakes/steering or A/C.

The alum. block from the LS1 should make up the weight gained from the t56 and scattershield. If you are going to look at upgrading the brakes, I would look into something the gives you more of a performance upgrade. There has been quite a few brake upgrade threads recently, specifically mentioning the wilwood SL4 calipers.
BTW... since you are saying you want to make your car into a modern super car, look into a rack and pinion kit. I made one for my car and it totally transformed the way it drives (in a good way :D ) There are mixed opinions on the rack vs a rebuilt stock box or jeep box, but my opinion is to go for the R&P. Looks like you will have a seriously bad ass vette when its all done :partyon:
I do have flares, vacuum, power brakes and A/C. I guess that could make up the difference. I already have the VB&P Rack Attack steering kit (not installed yet). I remember how bad the steering was when I drove the car home. Felt like I could turn the wheel a quarter turn in either direction without changing the direction of the car at all. My previous car was a '95 BMW M3 with coilovers. If I can reach that level of handling and steering precision I will be very happy. The extra 100 hp should make the Vette much more enjoyable! :partyon:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
316 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
Now I will stop with the thread jack. Back to you. You should post some pics of the swap kit when you get a chance so people can see your goodies.
I will definitely be posting pics of everything either tonight or sometime this weekend. I will also make a list of all the parts I have used at the top of the thread so anyone interested can see exactly what it takes to complete this swap.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
316 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
sounds like a sweet project. I think I remember you posting pics of it when you first took it over from your dad. Pretty sweet ride, and it's only going to get sweeter. Keep us updated :thumbsup:
Thanks lsejlowe! You are right, I did post back in '07 when I first got the car. Now that I have all the parts needed, I hope to make much faster progress. :cheers:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
706 Posts
Have you decided what you are going to do about the exhaust from the Speedhound headers back?

Right now I have 3" dual but I am not happy with how low it is, and I have it tucked almost right against the floor board. I think that I am going to convert my car to side pipes. We will see.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
316 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
I was planning to go 2.5" with an X somewhere. No emissions here in Alabama so I am free to do whatever. I love some sidepipes! If you build the kit to go from longtubes to side pipes, I will buy it!!
 
1 - 20 of 491 Posts
Top