Tuning A '96 4.3 V6 Vortec Engine - Help & Pointers Needed. - S-10 Forum
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Tuning A '96 4.3 V6 Vortec Engine - Help & Pointers Needed.

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Old 07-31-2011, 10:40 PM   #1
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Tuning A '96 4.3 V6 Vortec Engine - Help & Pointers Needed.

Hi guys.

I know that tuning the 4.3 V6 Vortec engine isn't considered cost affective but due to my location it really is my best/only option. Please bear with me as I am going to give you as much information as possible so this will probably be a lengthy post.

The van in question is a '96 TMC conversion fitted with the Vortec "W" engine.

The RPO code says GU6 and the code on the rear axle is VCC. I know both codes match so the van has the 7.625", 3.42 open.

The numbers & letters on the ECU sticker are;

SERV. NO. 16244210.
BKCX
*86BKCX966115QLNH*
16200785

The current tyres on the van are 235/60/R15 and it is running on stock wheels.

The van is used as a daily driver and for driving from the Uk throughout Europe as far down as Spain & Morocco. At the moment pretty much everything is standard. I don't mind loosing a little top end if I can gain better acceleration/torque from a standing start.

My only modifications to the van are a K&N panel filter, Magnaflow cat and Gibson exhaust.

I am looking to modify the heads with larger valves (2.02" x 1.60") and port the inlet & outlet whilst sticking with a standard bottom end as dropping the block out to modify isn't an option I can consider at the moment. If anyone point me in the right direction of a company/individual who can help it would be appreciated.

I have seen various type of cam kits available and would like to stay away from a lumpy cams. I have been told that Comp Cams #249-K09-420-8 is a great kit and is perfect for what I want but I wondered if there are any other options available?

Am I limited with what I do to the Vortec heads when it comes to porting, fitting larger valves and a cam kit?


So far my parts list looks like this;

3.73 ring, pinion set & master install kit.

Trucool transmission cooler.

Corvette servo.

Maybe a HD-2 shift kit.

A modified Edelbrock 2114 intake manifold. Unfortunately I don't have the tools or know how to do this but have read that Mike at Boosted Thrills or someone called Sam Steeb who works out of the Kansas City area can help. Does anyone know who they are or how to contact them or any other company/individual who can undertake this work?

Last but not least I'm looking to get the PCM flashed by tunercat.com

Thanks for your time

Ben
Old 07-31-2011, 11:24 PM   #2
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Re: Tuning A '96 4.3 V6 Vortec Engine - Help & Pointers Needed.

Start looking through the blowers and bottles section and you'll learn a lot about these motors and tuning aspects. As for the vortec heads you can put in 2.02 and 1.60 valves in them fairly easy and get a valve job done on them as well as do some bowl blend work on them all at once. As for a cheaper intake manifold option you can also use a marine intake manifold off of a 4.3 mercruiser boat engine. These manifolds are very easy to find on ebay brand new with fuel rails, injectors, throttlebody with tps and iac already in it and map sensor. I got my marine intake from an ebay seller greatlakesskipper for $200 shipped brand new. As for getting a good tune on it if you are going to go ahead and do heads and cam work I would avoid at all costs a mail order tune for something that modified, I would go ahead and re-wire in a 0411 pcm out of the 2001-2002 s10's blazers, sonoma's, astro's and many other donor vehicles such as ls1 f-bodies and then get a custom tune. You can contact lextech1 on here via PM and he can probably get you an excel file on the pinouts in order to do the re-wire.
Old 08-01-2011, 03:58 AM   #3
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Re: Tuning A '96 4.3 V6 Vortec Engine - Help & Pointers Needed.

Quote: Originally Posted by Geoff
Start looking through the blowers and bottles section
I'm not interested in Turbos, Superchargers or Nitrous, N/A tuning thanks for the info tho.

Quote: Originally Posted by Geoff
As for the vortec heads you can put in 2.02 and 1.60 valves in them fairly easy and get a valve job done on them as well as do some bowl blend work on them all at once
If you can advise me on a trustworthy & reliable company who can undertake this it would be appreciated as I can't find a soul in the Uk with the knowledge to do this as they only seem to be interested in Japanese performance motors!

Quote: Originally Posted by Geoff
As for getting a good tune on it if you are going to go ahead and do heads and cam work I would avoid at all costs a mail order tune for something that modified
I assume you are talking about re-flashing the PCM? Again due to my location (Uk) I can't find anyone with the knowledge to do this.

Quote: Originally Posted by Geoff
I would go ahead and re-wire in a 0411 pcm out of the 2001-2002 s10's blazers, sonoma's, astro's and many other donor vehicles such as ls1 f-bodies and then get a custom tune. You can contact lextech1 on here via PM and he can probably get you an excel file on the pinouts in order to do the re-wire.
So if I follow this route I could then go for "a mail order tune"?
Old 08-01-2011, 01:47 PM   #4
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Re: Tuning A '96 4.3 V6 Vortec Engine - Help & Pointers Needed.

The reason to look through the blowers and bottles section is that this is where the most info is available for modifying these motors, the 262ci section seems mainly just a place to diagnose misfires and other odd problems, not much on the performance side like cam/head work. As for having head work done, almost any reputable shop in the U.S. I guess, I had a guy that has a machine shop in his garage do my head work for, installed 2.02 and 1.60 valves did bowl blend work and valve job. Then I picked them up from him and put them back on. And do not get a mail order tune, they are not going to be ideal for the head cam setup you will have, its best to swap in the 0411 and then have a tuner use hptuners or efi live to hook up to your pcm and scan it and data log then go ahead and make the adjustments necessary.
Old 08-04-2011, 01:25 PM   #5
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Re: Tuning A '96 4.3 V6 Vortec Engine - Help & Pointers Needed.

Great thank you for the info, sorry I got the wrong end of the stick!

I'm trying to find contact details of someone called Sam Steeb who works out of the Kansas City area, he modified Dogsofjune's Edelbrock 2114 intake and I have been really impressed with the workmanship.
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