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eastsideTim PowerDork
11/20/16 7:13 p.m.

EDIT:  The truck build has pivoted to doing an LS Swap, and gearing up for way more power (or just selling it and buying something already put together).  If you want to skip forward to that part go to Page 14.

Pulling the engine from the donor:  Page 16

Pulling the 305 out of the S10:  Page 18

Prepping and installing the LQ4 into the S10:  Page 19

Working on wiring, and trying to route intake and coolant hoses:  Page 21



Just picked up a low rust 1992 Chevrolet S10 from FL, and hauled it back to Ohio last weekend. I've competed in multiple GRM Challenges in the past, but have not been since 2012. Always been a mid-pack contender or backmarker, and that probably won't change, but its time to compete again Here it is: Shortbed, standard cab, 4.3/700R4 with a bad trans, and an engine that probably hasn't been run in 2 years. Not that it matters, as it'll probably get a V8 swap. I don't have visions of glorious victory here, just a small set of goals (in order from highest to lowest priority): 1. Don't wreck its usability as a truck. I don't mind losing some weight capacity, but after the event, I want to be able to haul some lumber, or toss a motor scooter in the bed. 2. Make it to the $2017 Challenge. Even if it means being a near last place finisher, I intend to bring the car to the GRM Challenge in $2017, no delaying it for a year, like I did with my last build. 3. Finish the GRM Challenge. Simply put, I want it to make a successful autocross pass, a successful drag pass, and show up (with the required documentation) for the concours. To that end, I am willing to sacrifice ultimate performance for reliability. 4. Make a sub 14 second drag run. I've never owned something fast enough to run into the 13s, so I'm hoping to pull this off. Part of the reason its been so long since my last challenge build, is the quandary of what to do with the car afterward. I'm not really a fan of autocrossing, and while I enjoy car shows, I'm more of a spectator for that. I do enjoy drag racing to some extent, and have been wanting a street cruiser, but my budget is not too big right now. So, I decided to stop caring about trying to do well overall in the competition, and focus on my own goal - building a fun street truck that can hold its own on a drag strip. I won't worry too much about concours, except engineering cheap solutions to problems that come up and making it look like I want it to look, and its autocross performance will probably be dismal. After the challenge it'll be time to refine it, and add more speed

eastsidemav SuperDork
11/20/16 7:23 p.m.

Spent most of last week traveling for work, but I did manage to get half a trash can's worth of leaves and branches out of the bed, and washed the truck before my trip. After getting back in town, I stopped in to a junkyard to pick up a couple of wheels to put on the driver's side, as the two tires on that side won't hold air:

They're 15X7 wheels off a 2nd gen S10, and may get drag radials tossed on them if I can't find a cheaper option. Up here in the rust belt, RWD GM cars are getting rare in the yards, so I couldn't get any steel 15" wheels.

There was only one 1st gen S10 in the junkyard, and thankfully, it had an intact passenger side window. As I was removing it, I noticed something funny. It has paint marker markings from this junkyard. It had been bought from there a little over 5 years ago, and now I'm buying it again. The circle of life for used car parts, I guess...

That's pretty much it for now. I need to clean up the bed box, and get it put up for sale to recoup some costs, and start looking for a drivetrain donor. I figure I have 2-2.5 months to look before beater prices start going up as people get their income tax refunds.

Dusterbd13 PowerDork
11/20/16 8:28 p.m.


dropstep Dork
11/20/16 9:06 p.m.

A friend and his dad have built 12 v8 s10's. Even with a stock 350 there a blast. Cheap platform for drag racing. Traction bars really help with wheelhop issues.

eastsidemav SuperDork
11/21/16 9:47 a.m.

I'll have to check that link out.

I've already planned on some sort of traction aid - it'll depend on budget, I think slapper bars if I don't have a lot of room, caltrac-style bars if I have a bit more space in the budget.

Ashyukun SuperDork
11/21/16 2:55 p.m.

I wish I'd managed to track down a set of S-10 lowering spindles for the Elky, I imagine they'd have served you pretty well. I need to try and figure out whether the lowering springs I have are front or rear- if they're front springs, they should also fit your S-10...

JohnRW1621 MegaDork
11/21/16 3:16 p.m.

Your style goals put me at 10th place overall for $2015 with the Infiniti Q45.

I have been in the presence of your truck there at Avery Motors. Fun stuff comes from there. Best of luck. See you in Gainesville!

Here is some advice on one more goal:
Be memorable, make an impact.

I'll leave you to interpret that in your own way.

whiskey_business New Reader
11/21/16 9:28 p.m.

Definitely going to follow this build, I'm contemplating doing the exact same thing for a daily driver. Usable pick up + reasonable power to weight should be fun. Best of luck.

chrispy HalfDork
11/22/16 12:12 p.m.

I love when these builds/ideas come up. Good luck!

eastsidemav SuperDork
11/24/16 3:16 p.m.

In reply to Dusterbd13:

Read your thread on the S10 forum. Thanks for the link.

eastsidemav SuperDork
11/24/16 3:41 p.m.

Sitting here a thousand miles away from the truck, recovering from eating too much, so I'm pondering swap options.

From a complexity standpoint, it seem to go from least to most in the order:

TBI -> TPI -> Carb -> Vortec -> LT1 -> LS whatever.

TBI: Lowest overall output stock. There are some simple mods to improve power somewhat, but there's a pretty low limit. If I find a donor with a 700R4 instead of a 4L60E, minimal wiring work. Exhaust manifolds from a 3rd gen F body can be used if I can't budget for headers.

TPI: A lot of the same as above, only more overhead for power. A little hard to find a deal around here, though. People seem to think even non-running fuel injected 3rd gens are worth over a grand.

Carb: Not likely to find a stock carb'd donor for cheap anymore. May also come with a TH350, which isn't bad, and would be cheaper to build up than a 700R4, but driving all the way to Gainesville w/o overdrive would not be fun. Only a little more wiring work, so not a difficult swap, and lots of potential for upping the power, if the budget allows.

Vortec: Still bolts up the same, and I think I can still use the same accessories, since it's a Gen 1 engine. Wiring gets more advanced, and a donor is going to have a 4L60E.

LT1: Even more wiring, may be more need to mix and match accessories to get it to fit. It's an orphan engine, too, not likely to get a lot of hop up parts.

LS: Great for power, but even more work to wire up, and will require a lot of scrounging to get the needed accessories to make it fit. Not to mention, I'd probably have to hit the northern part of the state to get a deal.

I'm not a great deal maker, and my work/travel schedule keeps me from being able to get those deals that pop up and get sold within minutes. Frankly, I also work a little slow in the garage.

I'm leaning towards TBI, just to get it up and running fast, preferably from a Roadmonster or Custom Cruiser when they still had a 700R4. After that, Vortec seems like a possibility, due to how many are out there, and the fact that even a Vortec 305 makes alright power. After that, carb seems the next best option, if I can find the right deal.

A TBI swap should help me meet goals 1-3 easily, and allow lots of room for suspension, wheels, etc in the budget.

I'll do some more pondering, and hopefully get a little time this weekend to look over the truck more thoroughly when I get home.

dropstep Dork
11/24/16 6:05 p.m.

They can clear a pretty tall tire so if you get a deal on a carb/th350 combo you can run a 3.08 gear or so and just travel on a tall tire. Thats just the simplest combo as far as i know.

Ovid_and_Flem Reader
11/26/16 9:53 a.m.

In reply to eastsidemav:

I'll likely be removing the entire TPI system from the C4 Corvette that we ran at the 2016 challenge. If you want to go to PPI I'll let it go to a Challenger for challenge friendly money. It's fully operational and sortid. Will be removing everything including distributor, ECU, ECM, it cetera. We have removed all the smog components from the system. Let me know if you're interested

Dusterbd13 PowerDork
11/26/16 10:06 a.m.

Additionally, i have a motorvation stage 2 chip, 7727 ecm, and painless harnesses for the tpi for challenge friendly money if you want or need it.

bentwrench Dork
11/26/16 10:08 a.m.
dropstep wrote: They can clear a pretty tall tire so if you get a deal on a carb/th350 combo you can run a 3.08 gear or so and just travel on a tall tire. Thats just the simplest combo as far as i know.

Texas overdrive!

But has minus points towards the cool factor.

Plus more points in that it screams DORK and provides a psychological advantage!

bentwrench Dork
11/26/16 10:10 a.m.
Ovid_and_Flem wrote: In reply to eastsidemav: I'll likely be removing the entire TPI system from the C4 Corvette that we ran at the 2016 challenge. If you want to go to PPI I'll let it go to a Challenger for challenge friendly money. It's fully operational and sortid. Will be removing everything including distributor, ECU, ECM, it cetera. We have removed all the smog components from the system. Let me know if you're interested

TPI will deliver more torque, and provide excellent fuel distribution.

eastsidemav SuperDork
11/27/16 3:46 p.m.

Been a bit under the weather since I got home, but did manage t o make it out to a junkyard for a straight front bumper. Not sure I'll use it during the challenge, but it may get used to make a mold for a fiberglass bumper.

eastsidemav SuperDork
11/29/16 4:32 p.m.

Weather was warm, and I had about an hour before it got too dark (and I had to make dinner), so I pulled the broken window out of the passenger door. Took a lot of vacuuming to get as many little pieces of glass out as possible, but as always, there will be broken glass in that door for as long as the truck exists.

Which takes me to a minor quandary. When I got the replacement window, I noticed it had two holes in it, but didn't know why. I do now. There are little guides at the front and rear of the door. I need to remove them, as they are going to be in the way of getting the new glass in. It'd be nice to put them on the new glass, so I'd rather not mangle them. They seem to be locked in on a rail, though. Anyone got experience taking these out without having to pull the weatherstripping (which will probably fall apart after 24 years in the Florida sun)? If I have to tear them up, I suppose I can, too, since the truck I pulled the glass from must not have had them.

Dusterbd13 PowerDork
11/29/16 7:22 p.m.

I had no luck removing and reinstalling the window clips. Ultimately i found good weatherstrip and bought new clips.

Your mileage may vary.

eastsidemav SuperDork
12/3/16 7:19 p.m.

Met up with Ashyukun at the junkyard today, so he could pull Patriot parts, and I could search for swap pieces. Struck out looking for an 8.5" rear end and f-body exhaust manifolds, but did get a steering shaft from a Jeep Cherokee, and lucked into finding an S10 with a manual steering box, so we snagged that. It may not make it on for the challenge, but probably will at some point.

eastsidemav SuperDork
12/5/16 4:36 p.m.

Hooked up a good battery to the car on Sunday, and did not get anything at all. No lights, not gauges, nothing. Will have to figure out what's wrong with the wiring later, but this is pushing me more towards buying a complete donor vehicle.

On Monday, between the sun setting early, and the cold, I didn't get much time, but I set out to clean out the truck box in the half hour or so I had before it got too dark to work. It was nasty:

Did manage to salvage a few tools, and some other hardware from it, but most of what was in there was pretty much done for, as there was a bunch of oily crud at the bottom. I just winterized my pressure washer, but it'll be coming back out to finish the job when next time it's warm enough, and I have the time. There's no key on the lock for it, but it was pretty easy to remove the lock, so I'm thinking of buying a cheap replacement before selling it, as I'm guessing the price difference between a truck box with and without a working lock will be worth it.

Tomorrow, wae is planning on stopping over with his van, and is going to push the S10 into the garage! This will help a lot. I'm going to try to rapidly pull the 4.3 and sell it on CL, just to get it out of the garage. With as little space as I have to work with, I think once I get a donor vehicle, we'll try to pull the engine and trans from it, and drop it into the S10 all in one day. At least with the pickup, I'll be able to toss stuff in the bed...

wae Dork
12/5/16 5:27 p.m.

Push it real good!

pimpm3 Dork
12/5/16 5:38 p.m.

Great to see some progress...

eastsidemav SuperDork
12/5/16 8:55 p.m.

In reply to pimpm3:

Thanks! Progress is a little slow, and may continue that way for a while, but I'll have time. Being in the rust belt, once it goes in the garage, it likely won't go back on the road until the road salt is washed away in the spring.

JohnRW1621 MegaDork
12/6/16 12:26 a.m.

Oooh, baby, baby…

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