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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I ended up going through some unfortunate life events that led to the selling of my ‘57 Bel Air 2 Door Hardtop and ‘57 Bel Air 4 Door Sedan projects a year ago. However, I have found another ‘57 - a 210 2 Door post car, that I may be picking up to get back into the Tri-5 world.

At this point, I would like to do the bare minimum to get it moving under its own power with an LS swap. I have done some research and I think I have a “package” that can get the car going without spending a fortune. Let’s see what everyone here thinks:

Engine: 99-07 Truck engine, including accessory drive (no A/C), and intake. I believe both the accessory drive and intake will fit without issue. Power steering pump will be removed until a new steering box is required.

Transmission: 4L60E. Should provide good fitment and drivability while keeping simplicity.

Mounts: Speedway LS specific engine mounts and transmission crossmember kit. I’ve looked at several kits and I like these the most. I feel they have the strongest design and like the fact that they are non-permanent. The included adapters appear to have the ability to move the engine if needed by swapping them side to side.

Exhaust: 2010+ Camaro SS stock manifolds and downpipes/cats. I have a set of these already, and found a post showing 2” cut from the flange will allow the entire assembly to fit like factory.

Steering box: Unknown. I would like to convert to power steering in the future, but I want to ensure the swap will accommodate this in the future. I’ve seen posts stating Camaro manifolds range from being close but acceptable, to interfering with 500 series boxes. Are there other boxes that guarantee clearance?

Oil Pan: The Holley 302-1 seems to be the large consensus. I haven’t found any reported fitment issues with this pan.
 

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skip the speedway crap mounts get the Earl Williams mounts, they allow the shifting to the right some for better fitment. get his trans cross member too. you can use the camaro manifolds but the prices have started to climb on those. I would consider getting a set of header instead. also you WILL need to swap out the oil pan for the holley one or a less expensive copy of it. avoid the gmpp/hummer pan it hangs way too low and the stock truck pan is not even an option as it hangs even lower.
 
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I’m not a fan of Earl mounts for two reasons - I don’t want to weld mounts to my frame as I tend to only do non-permanent modifications, and the bushings have far less support area to eliminate NVH and are proprietary compared to the OE style mount that Speedway uses.

I already have a full set of 2010+ Camaro manifolds and downpipes/cats, so I would like to use these if possible. I’d rather not buy headers if these will fit just fine.
 

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the speedway may or may not fit. their stuff is inconsistent and the rubber parts are uber cheapo and fail soon. If you go with this mount setup consider getting a better quality rubber or urethane mount. Honestly every rubber part I have ever used form them has failed in a reasonably short amount of time. after doing a few jobs twice I just use the stuff that doesn't fail. I have some seriously picky customers and never had a complaint about vibration with the Williams stuff, with the camaro manifolds you probably will wish you had the ability to shift the engine to the right too. done more than 1 of these swaps , just sayin. Also LS engines don't have vibration issues unless there is something drastically wrong, they are way smoother than a small or big block chevy
 

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another thing not addressed here is the gas tank and fuel pump. hands down the Tanks Inc. setup is the best bang for the buck. it has internal baffle tray and you can pick your poison on the pump, I only use the walbro 255 in my builds. and is a direct bolt in. use a 01-06 corvette fuel filter/pressure/regulator mounted by the tank and you don't even have to run a return line back from the engine. super simple and affordable.
 

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LSA manifolds fix the clearance issue with a CPP500 steering box. The second 'runner' is tighter to the block and provides plenty of clearance with the engine 'centered'. If you hunt around exhaust shops you'll find one that has the LSA manifolds laying around and will let them go cheap. It just takes a bit of leg work. A new set on ebay is $300.00.

Mounts; I used bolt in ones similar to this; 1955 1956 1957 Chevy Car Motor Mount Kit Small & Big Block Engine Bel Air Tri 5 | eBay. I understand that they are not the ones preferred by many, but I found that they had one handy advantage. The rubbers that they came with had the consistency of stone (as I suspect many mounts do), and the NVH was horrible. I just went down to the local rubber shop and picked up some softer ones and fitted them. They made a huge difference. Doing it again, I think that I would use the hydraulic mounts that came with the engine and fit them.

Tanks inc and the corvette filter/pressure/regulator is what I have. My filter/regulator is mounted on the outside of the chassis rail behind the rearmost body support.

I purchased a pull out 6.0 LS that had a 6L80 attached. I liked the idea of the 6L80 because the box is strong enough, had two extra gears, didn't need a rebuild, and the controller is internal. It seemed like a no brainer to me, but you hear story after story about how you have to butcher the tunnel, and the sky will fall lol. All that is required is raising the tunnel 0.75" towards the seat end. Seat has full movement, and the original carpet is reused, no one has yet picked it. With a 308 rear, the car betters 30mpg.

336821


Unless you drive like a great (great great) grandmother you will need a posi. Mine was hopeless to drive until I fitted one. I've done lots of hard launches over the lest 3 years, no problems other than leaking wheel bearings (58-64 bearings and a 1/8" spacer fixes that).

Intake; a bit of exhaust tubing, a couple of (truck shop intake) rubber bends and a filter and you can get a great cold air intake. Easy to male a splash shield (flat aluminium sheet, bent, mount one end on the underside of inner fender and the other on the bumper bracket), It fits under the fresh air tubes no problem.

336822
 

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If you are running the early truck intake you will need to run a return line to the gas tank. (Pre '04 truck - people correct me if I'm wrong). You can find a new sending unit from the usual Tri-5 vendors that has a hookup for the return line. That way you can avoid the cost of a new tank.

You also didn't mention instrumentation - aftermarket gauges for engine management stuff is easy and cheap enough but the speedo will need to be addressed. Couple of options here as well.
 

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If you are running the early truck intake you will need to run a return line to the gas tank. (Pre '04 truck - people correct me if I'm wrong). You can find a new sending unit from the usual Tri-5 vendors that has a hookup for the return line. That way you can avoid the cost of a new tank.
Absolutely not true, you CAN run return-less on early systems works just like the others, just cap off the return on the fuel rails.
having done both in tank and frame rail mounted with stock tank, I would never do frame rail mounted again. the baffle or tray I the tank is invaluable when low on gas and going around a corner, stalling the engine from fuel starvation is hazardous and bad for the pump. At the very least consider a holley intank conversion setup. it has a built in regulator, is totally return-less and has a small hydromat to keep the pump in fluid and it just works. at the end of the day the Tanks inc setup is still the best bang for the buck.
 

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I stand corrected then.

Though, I am running the frame mounted pump and have never starved the engine or pump of fuel. The one thing I will say about the frame mounted pump is that it is LOUD.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks guys. For now, the most important thing is simply to get the car running. I will be going the Vermont title route, and one of the local Alaska title change requirements will be that the car must be “roadworthy”, I.E., run, have functional brakes, and satisfy safety requirements such as windshield, headlights, taillights, brake lights, etc. While technically it’s supposed to be a complete vehicle, the way the inspection process is worded allows for some....creativity. I’ll keep the build thread I made updated on this process.
 

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I have some seriously picky customers and never had a complaint about vibration with the Williams stuff, with the camaro manifolds you probably will wish you had the ability to shift the engine to the right too
^^^ This.
I have both, the Camaro manifolds, and the Williams mounts.
I currently have the engine about 1/2" offset right. Probably enough room at the 600 box, to use the oem heat shields.
As for headers: I had a set of Headman mid length headers made for a 67 GTO/LS combo. A perfect fit.
1967 PONTIAC GTO Hedman Hedders 45186 Hedman Husler LS Engine Swap Headers | Summit Racing
 
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