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Tim Suddard
Tim Suddard Publisher
1/25/13 11:17 a.m.

Sitting at LAX, my home away from home, waiting to get a flight to Daytona, so I can join the festivities.

I just went to the MPMC SEMA media conference. As you can imagine, everyone has LS fever.

All right, even as a Ford guy, I am in. Discussions on this board and discussions with manufacturers, and then the recent conversation about us needing another Ro-Spit level project have me convinced we need to drop an LS into something.

I don't want to do what's been done before or ordinary. Ie. I know there are kits to put one in a Boxster or RX-7. We need something crazier.

I think I have the ultimate idea figured out, but I want to hear from you. Chances are, as wacked as I am, my idea might be too far out there.

Thoughts?

alfadriver
alfadriver PowerDork
1/25/13 11:24 a.m.

Two birds with one LS- a Locost.

ransom
ransom SuperDork
1/25/13 11:26 a.m.

the Ro-Spit was awesome. And even if the end result wasn't everything you might have hoped, the Berzerkely was a riveting project to follow... So I don't know how far out there you are, but I'd love to find out...

My own thoughts? I always come back to combining classic looks with updated underpinnings, and while I certainly lean Fordward, it's hard to find fault with an LS...

Jensen Healey, MGB, Porsche 914, or '62-'65 Falcon (either of those body styles works for me...). Any of these will need a lot of work to make sense with LS power, somewhere between beefing up what's there and starting from scratch in the suspension departments.

Strip the Falcon to nothing, and use big box sections to make a stiff platform for LS at the front and Corvette transaxle at the rear without having to revisit the cages-in-street-and-autocross-cars worries...

Okay, I'm shutting up now before I really over-ramble. I'm dying to hear where you're going to go with this, and I look forward very much to reading the installments when they start...

Javelin
Javelin MegaDork
1/25/13 11:29 a.m.

Meh. The LS1 is ooooooold news now. In fact, there's already an entire magazine devoted just to swapping those in (PHR). At this point it's rarer to see a car that came with an LS stock at a show than it is to see swapped ones. Seriously.

If you really want to catch some attention, call up GM and get one of the new LT1's and tell us how we can swap that in, complete with the DI, VVT, and dry-sump. There's going to be some serious hurdles with all that tech that the home swappers of today aren't equipped to solve... yet.

As to what to put it in? Well another 1-dimensional autocross car wouldn't be fun to read. Needs moar mud. So something that can rally. How about that 818 on stilts ala the rally-x 911 thread?

Swank Force One
Swank Force One MegaDork
1/25/13 11:30 a.m.

I'm thinking an LS1 into.... a Toyota Crown. Pro Touring style.

fastEddie
fastEddie SuperDork
1/25/13 11:37 a.m.

RX-8

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
1/25/13 11:43 a.m.
Javelin wrote: Meh. The LS1 is ooooooold news now. In fact, there's already an entire magazine devoted just to swapping those in (PHR). At this point it's rarer to see a car that came with an LS stock at a show than it is to see swapped ones. Seriously. If you really want to catch some attention, call up GM and get one of the new LT1's and tell us how we can swap that in, complete with the DI, VVT, and dry-sump. There's going to be some serious hurdles with all that tech that the home swappers of today aren't equipped to solve... yet. As to what to put it in? Well another 1-dimensional autocross car wouldn't be fun to read. Needs moar mud. So something that can rally. How about that 818 on stilts ala the rally-x 911 thread?

Of course the Gen-III LS1 is old news, that engine's been gone for years The LS3 and LS7, on the other hand, are still relevant.

The dry sump (or, as it's known in some circles, the "damp sump") is easily converted to a wet sump with off-the-shelf parts. Otherwise, it's just a matter of packaging. DI shouldn't be a big deal, it's all on the engine. Same with VVT and cylinder deactivation. Just get the appropriate controller from GM and plug it in. The only questions I have about the LT1 is the mount points. If the motor mounts and accessory packages line up with the Gen-IV stuff, then there's nothing much to write about. Besides, I'm sure Car Craft will have a big writeup about it.

So, different just to be different? How about a LBC like an MGB GT? You could even graft in the suspension from a Miata to make it handle. Oh, wait...

My personal next step would be a Class-1 style buggy. But that's because I live where I could use one. If I lived in Florida, I'd be building a swamp buggy or an airboat

petegossett
petegossett UltraDork
1/25/13 11:43 a.m.
alfadriver wrote: Two birds with one LS- a Locost.

A local guy has one. With a sprint car wing on top of the cage.

While I have nothing against a relatively cheap/easy engine like the LSx for a swap, as a magazine, I think you'd draw more readers with an article that showed less known swaps that offer a better HP/$ or have some unique feature, etc.

Be different - it's what GRM is great at!

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
1/25/13 11:43 a.m.
fastEddie wrote: RX-8

I have the subframe for that right here. Want one?

HP/$ and packaging is exactly why the LS swaps are so popular.

Teh E36 M3
Teh E36 M3 Dork
1/25/13 11:50 a.m.

What about a relatively exotic car with a relatively expensive engine that is blown? There have to be Aston's, XK8's, XJR's etc that need this treatment. I'm not totally against a boat with this engine, and by boat, I mean land yacht, although thinking about it, I'm not opposed to a real boat either.

And yes, I agree. You need something as ambitious as Ro-Spit. That was what got me hooked. What could handle the power, but be fun to drive (that hasn't been done much)?

EDIT: I've got it: TVR 2500M. Or Lotus Esprit.

Damn.

Or do you just need more cow bell?

oldtin
oldtin UltraDork
1/25/13 11:51 a.m.

Ooh, the LT1 info sounds interesting. Even though the LSx is the 500 lb gorilla, it is kinda old news on swaps (maybe that's too jaded from hanging around here). I definitely like the thought of bringing the high-tech, sophisticated stuff into the realm of the build it home guys - especially the wiring/computer implications.

As for ideas: saab 900 (or 99), rwd or awd, v8 rally car. Or throw it in old subie - think of those wide, wide chassis rails. Lot's of dead maserati biturbos available on the cheap, alfa 75/milanos. Mess with the ford people, stick it in a mustang or a mercur or other more obscur stuff. Maybe a track day special - e36 m3 chassis with 450 hp done on the cheap.

Also - want to know more about the fab work/tricks for things like conversion adaptors - opening up the world of different engine/transmission combinations rather than being stuck with the old LSx/t56 combo. Granted it's good, but nothing to learn there.

Tim Suddard
Tim Suddard Publisher
1/25/13 11:52 a.m.

You guys are on the right track. I do have two beater MG, a GT and a roadster. We ran through that idea and while they offer good looks, cheap donor cars and probably room to fit he engine, they are bit antique and would need suspension and brake work.

Tim Suddard
Tim Suddard Publisher
1/25/13 11:53 a.m.

Miata suspension is compelling. I need to look underneath my Miata to see how easy it would be to install in something else.

Javelin
Javelin MegaDork
1/25/13 11:53 a.m.

In reply to oldtin:

PHR swapped an LS1 into a Mustang five years ago.

I'm liking LT1 into an Espirit though!

hobiercr
hobiercr HalfDork
1/25/13 12:01 p.m.

I've got a line on an '85 Merkur that has all the suspension bits done and I want the drivetrain that is in it. BOOM, great handling and stiff chassis just waiting for an LS1.

Bobzilla
Bobzilla UltraDork
1/25/13 12:02 p.m.

LS9 into a B-body wagon.... with a cage.

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
1/25/13 12:07 p.m.

Tim - I know a guy who put Miata front suspension and an LS1/T56 combo in an MGB. Final weight was unchanged, in large part due to the massive weight of some of the MG suspension parts. It was a bit like building a ship in a bottle, but it does fit. Just in case you have any questions

Miata suspension is pretty modular and easy enough to install in a different vehicle. Plus you can get a bolt-in subframe with LS motor mounts. Again, I know a guy who might be able to help with info and maybe parts.

So, not antique. But not a BRZ, it'll have to be something with an inexpensive buy-in. Esprit would be awesome to see, especially the super-clean pre-turbo design. Bonus points for making it into a submarine.

I like 911. Find one with a dead engine (or buy a vetted perfect one and pull the engine out a few months later) and stuff the LS in the rear. Bonus points for making a Rothmans Dakar car out of it.

Merkur isn't a bad idea. That platform does have some history in competition for sure.

How about if Chevy decided to build a modern Renault 5 Turbo? Mid-engined transverse mount LS in the back of an Aveo.

Apexcarver
Apexcarver UberDork
1/25/13 12:11 p.m.

I agree with the Esprit or something of that ilk.

The Subie engine into a Ferrari thread really has my noodle cooking.

The Ferrari is plain awesome because its underpinnings are a tube frame.

What is a really awesome exotic car that is avoided for its engine being just too big of a pain?

Also something like the always linked PPC Rolls Royce would be awesome.

Probably too common, but LS swap a Jag and gut / track prep it?

Or I can throw in some of the GRM Forum Weirdness...

Lotus Eclat!

Tr7 (with suspension build using circle track parts?)

My mind keeps coming back to the Eclat. Those things are practically worthless and finding an incomplete one is easy-peasy. Makes a good basis for a track build where you care NOT about originality. Where stock won't do, visit a junk yard or circle track catalog.

Swank Force One
Swank Force One MegaDork
1/25/13 12:13 p.m.
Keith Tanner wrote: How about if Chevy decided to build a modern Renault 5 Turbo? Mid-engined transverse mount LS in the back of an Aveo.

ROFL.

THIS. OMGTHIS.

Swank Force One
Swank Force One MegaDork
1/25/13 12:14 p.m.
Apexcarver wrote: What is a really awesome exotic car that is avoided for its engine being just too big of a pain?

Any Maserati found on Craigslist.

LS1 BiTurbo. Make it so.

In order to be able to keep the "BiTurbo" badges on it, install two turbos.

foxtrapper
foxtrapper PowerDork
1/25/13 12:18 p.m.

Still have your Manx?

Build your own Boss Hoss?

Tell Margie you're giving her Corvair a tune-up?

RossD
RossD UberDork
1/25/13 12:19 p.m.

What about a Mercedes Benz W110 190D? Add a LSx/LT1 with a manual transmission. Maybe something that costs less than a T56 but will still take the power/torque. A 4 speed maybe what we are talking about, I don't know, but it would fit a 60's car. Then make the MB into a DTM style car.

This car:

But with this livery:

Gasoline
Gasoline Dork
1/25/13 12:28 p.m.

I'm bringing a 5.3l LS '55 Morris Minor with rear mount twin turbos to the $2013.

Sonic
Sonic SuperDork
1/25/13 12:31 p.m.

Jaguar XJS or XK8, make an awesome GT car, cheap buy in with a blown motor. Bonus points for using a non corvette/f-body version of the motor from a more pedestrian source, and extra bonus points for a manual transmission.

As a German alternative, a 6 series BMW.

Ranger50
Ranger50 UberDork
1/25/13 12:34 p.m.
Sonic wrote: Jaguar XJS or XK8, make an awesome GT car, cheap buy in with a blown motor. Bonus points for using a non corvette/f-body version of the motor from a more pedestrian source, and extra bonus points for a manual transmission.

This.

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