388bu's LQ4 swap thread - Its alive!

388bu

Top Fueler
May 27, 2003
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Huntley, il
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Found a motor. '04 LQ4 from a van. 48k on the clock. $1500 with everything. Coil packs, accessories, ECM, harness, DBW pedal and MAF. Looks like im picking up the motor Wednesday. I budgeted $1500 for the motor and this is exactly what I was looking for. Low mileage DBW motor.

Not sure what problems the van accessories will present, but im really considering just going with f-body accessories anyway. Planning on doing DBW, but there's still a few unknowns as to how that will play out. Intake/TB choices, accessory clearance issues, etc.

Planning on the BRP 1-3/4" long tubes and an f-body pan and notching the k-member.

More updates/pics to come...

Heres the quick overview of how I did the swap:

Mounts
Carshop inc standard mounts and re-drilled the frame after positioning the motor exactly where I wanted it. It is set back about 3/4 - 1".

Headers
BRP Hotrods 1-7/8" LT's. They fit great. My car is lowered a bit so I wouldnt mind them being tucked up a bit more, but they are a very nice header!

Harness/ECM
Jesse @ Wait4meperformance did it. Great work for the price and it made the wiring portion of the job pretty easy.

Accessories/Pulleys
Switched to brand new F-body stuff. I didnt want the hassles of pulley interference, etc down the road when I switch intakes.

Intake
Stock truck intake with returnless fuel rail. Used a stock 2000 vette FPR mounted near the tank and the russel quick disconnect adapters, etc. Drive by cable TB.

Drivetrain
Aftermarket T56 with a Mcleod bell. I only mention this to let people know that it works with my setup. I thought the headers wouldnt clear, but they do just fine. The only thing that really sucks about this config is that I have to yank the bellhousing to pull the starter!!! Needless to say, I installed a new starter off the bat!

Oil pan
CTS-V pan FTMFW!!! Unless your car is REALLY low, then this is the pan to use! My headers will scrape before the pan does. It hangs about 3/4" below the front crossmember.
 

StreetBu

MalibuRacing Junkie
Mar 21, 2004
4,162
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Upstate NY
Re: 388bu's LQ4 swap thread

With the way your car you built your car already, I can't wait to see it with the LSX!
 

388bu

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May 27, 2003
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Re: 388bu's LQ4 swap thread

Brought the motor home today.

Turns out this one was a drive by cable. I guess they kept the vans drive by cable, at least in '04 anyways. That is fine by me since I changed my mind and decided to go drive by cable. Seems like you have more flexibility and more aftermarket support, etc.

I was pleasantly surprised to find that the motor did NOT have the extended oil fill tube and dipstick. I figured coming from a van that it would.

The harness ended up being damaged in the van so they grabbed a harness and ECM from an '02 Silverado. The MAF plug was different and I THINK he said the oil pressure sender plug was as well, so they pulled that stuff from the '02. Other than that, I am not expecting any issues from mixing and matching.

If you are looking for a great place to get one of these motors in Wisconsin, go to Rhine Auto parts in Plymouth. Its about 60 miles north of Milwaukee. These guys are thorough. They caught the MAF plug issue and oil sender plug issue...I didnt expect them to hook the harness up and check all the plugs, but they did.
 

Doober

Moderator
Jun 2, 2003
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Catalina, AZ
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Re: 388bu's LQ4 swap thread

I was gonna say about the only major issue you'd probably have to worry about interchange-wise would be the reluctor ring they changed one year for the crank trigger. I don't like drive by wire either, I like the cable more just because of the feel. I remember my dad's '03 feeling completely different than his '99 because it's DBW, seems quite sensetive to pressure compared to the cable TB.

So where are the pics??? shrug.gif ;)
 

MY FYN 79

Frequent Racer
Oct 31, 2003
487
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N/E WI
www.cardomain.com
Re: 388bu's LQ4 swap thread

Awesome Craig, glad Rhine hooked you up!

But yah, where are those pictures?? :)
 

388bu

Top Fueler
May 27, 2003
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Re: 388bu's LQ4 swap thread

Doober said:
I was gonna say about the only major issue you'd probably have to worry about interchange-wise would be the reluctor ring they changed one year for the crank trigger. I don't like drive by wire either, I like the cable more just because of the feel. I remember my dad's '03 feeling completely different than his '99 because it's DBW, seems quite sensetive to pressure compared to the cable TB.

So where are the pics??? shrug.gif ;)
I was wondering about the reluctor. Do you have any more information on that? I couldnt find anything on ls1tech.com for sure, other than a lot of LS1 owners that need to change theirs.

Looking on gmpartsdirect.com, its showing the same part number for the 6.0 for all years...assuming im looking at the right part. They are calling it a crankshaft timing gear...its got to be it.

I think im good there. Ill snap a few pics today and throw em up on flickr with a link. :)
 

Doober

Moderator
Jun 2, 2003
14,704
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Catalina, AZ
www.cardomain.com
Re: 388bu's LQ4 swap thread

I don't know many details about it, just that they went from something like 52 to 58. I remember reading about it in an article, I'll see if I can't find it somewhere... might be the article Car Craft did on swapping a Gen III into an A-Body (They put one in a '64??? Elky).
 

388bu

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May 27, 2003
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Re: 388bu's LQ4 swap thread

Small update.

Bolted my old bell and the T56 up to this sucker today to very that the transmission input shaft extended far enough into the crankshaft and it does! Woo-hoo! I ordered a McCleod flywheel that is .400 inches thicker so that brings the flywheel surface back to where this aftermarket T56 is expecting it. I also ordered a McCleod adapter pilot bushing as its made to sit in the very end of the crank which is about a 2" opening instead of the 1" or so standard SBC opening.

So I dropped her in to see where my shifter ended up. It is 1.25" forward of where it needs to be. I am not sure how I will solve this. Maybe some slotted LS1 to S10 mounts or the transdapt 1" setback mounts. P/N 4575.

Miraculously, this swap is getting cheaper than I thought the further I get into it. I swear, its like Rod Serling is gunna be in my living room any minute now. lol

And an obligatory pic...

 

Marco2

Weekend Racer
Jul 19, 2007
99
0
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oceanside,ca
Re: 388bu's LQ4 swap thread

The reluctor wheels changed only between the gen III and gen IV platforms. Gen II was 5something and GenIV is 2something.
 

388bu

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May 27, 2003
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Re: 388bu's LQ4 swap thread

Another small update...

I went ahead and ordered everything to swap over to F-body accessories. This really hurt the wallet, but its going to be all new stuff. I know that I will be fighting the truck accessories down the road when I want to switch to a car intake. So I figured I need to make the switch now instead of buying stuff twice. (New alternator, etc)

I also did some work on the fuel system to account for the returnless fuel rail. I used a 2000 Vette FPR/Filter combo back near the tank. Pics are up on Flickr. Check the link in my sig.

I ordered the BRP 1-7/8" headers. I was going to go with the 1-3/4", but I was talking to a guy there and he said if I do L92 heads, the ports are bigger and wont work with the smaller headers. I was considering the 1-7/8" anyways because they just sound badass. I know ill lose some torque down low, but hopefully they will shine when I get the L92's and a big cam.

I had to notch my A/C box a good bit to clear the valve cover. I have the motor set back pretty far to keep the T56 in the same place it was before. I REALLY didnt want to move the shifter location and buy a new driveshaft so I think this was the lesser of two evils.

Shooting to have this thing running in about 3 weeks. Waiting on parts is slowing me down.
 

388bu

Top Fueler
May 27, 2003
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Huntley, il
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Re: 388bu's LQ4 swap thread

Like a glove! The motor is sitting nice between the fenders now.

So I decided to move my motor forward about 3/4" from where I originally planned to put it. This puts the T56 3/4" further forward from where it was with the SBC. My driveshaft was border line too long anyways, so this works out OK. The passenger valve cover was just too close to the A/C box for my liking before. So as the motor sits now, its about 3/4" back from the position it would be in if you took the transdapt 4592 mounts and just bolted everything up like stock.

Since I moved the motor forward, the f-body pan wouldnt work any longer. I ordered a CTS-V pan and it came in today. This damn pan is, in my opinion, THE pan for a g-body swap. I have about 1" between the sump area and the crossmember under the engine. It hangs down about 1/2" max below the crossmember, thats it.

The f-body alternator is close to the P/S pump, but still plenty of room. New pics at http://flickr.com/photos/388bu/sets/72157607400245239/

Now if my McCleod flywheel would arrive, I can start buttoning this thing up.
 

Marco2

Weekend Racer
Jul 19, 2007
99
0
0
oceanside,ca
Re: 388bu's LQ4 swap thread

Looks like it coming along perfectly. You still have tons of room between the firewall and the rear of the engine.
 

388bu

Top Fueler
May 27, 2003
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Huntley, il
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Re: 388bu's LQ4 swap thread

Worked on the wiring tonight and laying out the harness/ecm location along with the necessary relay's and fuses. I had decided to mount the ECM about where the windshield washer bottle used to be, but decided it cluttered up the engine bay too much.

The ECM will live under the glove box along with two relays and a 3 spot fuse block now. Should have the wiring pretty much all done within a couple of days or so.

Few new pics at the link in my sig.