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Discussion Starter #1
Hello,

So I've been lurking here for off and on for a few years. Collecting all the parts I needed to get this party started. A lot of good info here that "hopefully" will help this swap go smoothly.
First a little info on my truck. I bought it 4yrs ago and it has been my DD and it has been from Indiana to Florida 6 times. Great Runner just lacking a bit of power on the interstate. also these 4.3 are not very fuel efficient at 70+ mph. So I figured a ls swap would improve power and hopefully efficiency. at least if the fuel economy don't go up the power will be worth it.

2003 Extreme Ext cab. 4.3 v6. 4L65E tranny with tow package. 3.73 Posi rear end. ZQ8 suspension package. Fully loaded interior. Who ever ordered this truck checked all the boxes available. I even still have the window sticker. 176,xxx miles on her now. Bought it with 136,xxx
I got a rust free 3rd door while I was in Florida as well as a tailgate. Other than that its body was rest free.
I also replaced the Extreme wheels with ZQ8 wheels. I've always loved these wheels on an S10.

The motor I got is a Frankenstein machine I bought from a buddy of mine who decided to do a twin turbo set up and wanted an iron block.
The motor is in boxes so as to show inside is in good shape. Looks like new!

2012 5.3 Block with 12k on it
DOD Delete done
04 Z06 Cam and lifters "new"
806 heads with the yellow springs and valve job done new valve seals. (I know these aren't the best heads but they are what I got in the deal, and they have been gone thru)
LS1 intake and injectors
CPW Harness
Corvette accessory drive kit complete with alt. and power steering pump
04 Corvette MAF sensor "New acdelco"
CPW A/C relocation brackets and compressor
CPW motor mounts
Stainless Works long tube headers
GPlus 92mm Throttle body
I've replace all sensors except Map sensor already seemed to look new
2 New O2 sensors. All new gaskets and head bolts. New corvette Balancer and Crank bolt
New corvette water pump
Lingenfelter converter box to convert 58x to 24x

I started pulling my little truck apart last weekend. And the anxiety started. First came out the tranny. Lots of crusty bolts made the job take longer. Then out came the motor harness and all in one shot. Did a little wire wheeling and painting in the engine bay and in went the motor. A little heads up that I never thought of if you are going to run the older perimeter bolt valve cover heads, it makes taking the valve covers off a pain because the back corner bolts are so close to the A/C box and brake booster it is tough. LOL

I was planning on the tranny going in this weekend but I think i'm going to order a larger stall converter. I don't think the factory 12" is going to make me happy. I think this thing will be a lot happier with a 2800-3000 stall converter. which means i'll have to wait till next weekend to put the tranny in. I guess i'll work on the fuel filter connections and gas lines.
 

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Looking good, Hooker makes a steering shaft for swaps that eliminates the orange rubber and adds a ujoint to the the base of the shaft. I used it on my swap, the header started to melt the orange rubber that surrounds the shaft. Good luck with the swap looking forward to seeing future updates.
 

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time to get cereal
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Does it replace the upper tulip joint as well? Wouldn't be worth it unless it did IMO.
 

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they have one available for the shafts with both joints it was noted to fit up to 93 not sure on that one tho, but i know i melted some of that rubber on my headers after on my swap, so the one on my 95 i only did the lower part of the steering shaft. all i really needed for clearance
 

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I've got a Z06 cam for my L33, so I'll be interested in how it does in the 5.3 engine. I have no practical experience with the LS engine but I'm picking up some good info on putting my project together here. I don't think there is a bad LS head it's just some are better than others. Your engine should make plenty of power unless you're planning on racing it. Good luck with your build.
 

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You can probably pick up a set of 799 heads fairly 'cheap', from a pick n pull. I believe every 5.3 starting in '07 or '08 had them.

Which oil pan are you using? Looks like the LH8 pan but difficult to see clearly.

Where in Indiana are you?
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Looking good, Hooker makes a steering shaft for swaps that eliminates the orange rubber and adds a ujoint to the the base of the shaft. I used it on my swap, the header started to melt the orange rubber that surrounds the shaft. Good luck with the swap looking forward to seeing future updates.
I think I might take the rubber off. I have plenty of room around it but I was thinking that the heat might melt it and make a mess. I think it is for insulation against heat boiling the grease in the shaft. So i'm not sure if I should. A little more research before I act.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I've got a Z06 cam for my L33, so I'll be interested in how it does in the 5.3 engine. I have no practical experience with the LS engine but I'm picking up some good info on putting my project together here. I don't think there is a bad LS head it's just some are better than others. Your engine should make plenty of power unless you're planning on racing it. Good luck with your build.
Thanx EZA,

My first experience with LS engines myself. Heard this cam is a good upgrade and still daily reliable and cheap to pick up. Not planning on racing it just fun daily that needs to get me to and from Florida a couple times a year.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
You can probably pick up a set of 799 heads fairly 'cheap', from a pick n pull. I believe every 5.3 starting in '07 or '08 had them.

Which oil pan are you using? Looks like the LH8 pan but difficult to see clearly.

Where in Indiana are you?
Hey Art I'm in Merrillville NWI

Thanx for your advice but these Heads have already been gone thru. No need to spend more money on unknown heads. Plus all new TTY Head bolts, not going to rebuy all that for a little increase in flow for a daily not a race truck.

Using the Hummer H3 pan
 

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Old Fart
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I think I might take the rubber off. I have plenty of room around it but I was thinking that the heat might melt it and make a mess. I think it is for insulation against heat boiling the grease in the shaft. So i'm not sure if I should. A little more research before I act.
Here is a link to the Hooker shaft.


https://www.holley.com/products/ls_power/ls_swap_systems/1982-04_gm_s-10_sonoma_2wd_ls_swap_components/swap_accessories/parts/71223021HKR


I have an 03 just like yours that I just got an L33 for. I'm going to get all my parts bought before I start my swap, so far all I have bought is a Corvette water pump next will be the crank pulley. I will be following your build closely. Please use postimage.org or similar to post full-size pics so us older guys can see the details.
 

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Old Fart
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I've got a Z06 cam for my L33, so I'll be interested in how it does in the 5.3 engine. I have no practical experience with the LS engine but I'm picking up some good info on putting my project together here. I don't think there is a bad LS head it's just some are better than others. Your engine should make plenty of power unless you're planning on racing it. Good luck with your build.
If you want to know what to expect from your LS6 cam read this.


https://www.hotrod.com/articles/ls-cam-test-comparison/
 

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Discussion Starter #15
So a little frustrating progress today. The stainless works headers claim that the pass side goes in from below. Not even a snowballs chance in **** is that happening. So I had to pull the motor to try and get it in while lowering the motor in. Not an easy chore when your doing this by yourself. I had already clearanced the floors on both sides before installing. Weellll…. I guess the pass side needs quit a bit more. So needless to say I called it quits for this weekend. I'm going to have to pull the motor one more time to make some more room for that header. :frown2:
I did get a summit 3k stall converter and a new flex plate ordered. So once I get the header set in I can start on installing the tranny.

On a side note: This truck came with a 4L65E and after a little research to get the converter I found out the tranny had been replaced at some point with a 4L60E :censor:
Oh well i'm rolling with it.

So I might be off of work for the Holiday starting Wed. My summit order should be here Wed. So maybe I can get a good bit done. Fingers crossed things go a bit smoother.
 

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I've seen the headers set in place in the engine bay, the motor dropped in, then the headers bolted on. The engine would not fit with the headers installed. Hopefully this works for me too
 

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Hate to disagree with you, but the original trans in your 03 Xtreme with a 4.3 was a 4L60E.
The 4L65e uses a 7" depth bellhousing, a 300mm input shaft and a converter all designed designed for LS applications only.
Some of only the full sized trucks after 99 had a 4L60E in that configuration adapted to the 4.3. A 4L65E was never installed behind a 4.3.
They were never put behind a S-series 4.3 because they simply wouldn't bolt up. There are adapters available to accomplish this, but GM never installed the 4L65E that way. To use your 4.3 4L60E behind your 5.3 you'll need the reverse adapters for bolting an LS engine to an old style transmission.
I'd recommend looking for an LS style 4L60e or even better a 4L65E from a later vehicle. Then you won't have to mess with adapters.
The only way externally to ID a 4l65E is by the broadcast code tag on the upper front of the case. The first number of the 4 characters is the year. 4 would be 1994 or 2004 The 2nd is the vehicle series. C is 2wd K is 4wd. The 3rd, if it is a Z is a 4L65E. Any other letter is a 4L60E. ie, 6KZD from an 06 4x4 is a 4L65E. The 4th letter is always a D and indicates the 4L6xx transmission series.

Most common 4L65E applications
Applications:

Cadillac Escalade
Cadillac Escalade EXT
Chevrolet Silverado SS
GMC Sierra Denali
GMC Yukon Denali
Hummer H2

As you can see most were 4wd. You might want to consider having a 4L60E updated to 4L65E or 4L70E specs.
Avoid, run don't walk, from Monster Transmissions or any other builder that runs lots of ads on the interweb. They're scammers.
Take your money and ship junk built from worn out parts.
The good shops capable of building them right are so busy they don't need to advertise. Look for a local builder on Craigslist and go meet the guy.
 

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time to get cereal
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Old Fart
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That doesn't look to be collapsible like the factory shaft, in case you care about such things. The orange boot protects the plastic part that is designed to break and allow the shaft to slide into itself in a frontal collision.
I don't know about any plastic piece but the shaft still slides up into the collum in a collision. Instructions say to grease it well so it can slide into the shaft. The biggest difference is no more rag joint.
 

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time to get cereal
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The stock shaft is a two pieces fused together with some kind of plastic. It by itself is collapsible.



 
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