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Old 09-04-2011, 06:11 PM   #1
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Default 5.3 vs 5.7 vs 6.0

Next dumb question...Sorry, plenty more of these to come.

I may have a chance to pick up a 5.3 long block for my carbureted LS build in my '67 Camaro. I'd like to build something in the 500hp range (needs to be reliable and streetable), and would be swapping intake and cam already, and quite likely heads as well.

Cost wise, how much more expensive is it going to be to get to 500hp with a 5.3 vs a 5.7 or 6.0 block? If it's a great deal, is it worthwhile? Should I just shop for a short block? Will it be less streetable if I start with a smaller motor (i.e. would the cam have to be that much more radical?) Are the 5.3's strong enough? Any/all info is appreciated here.

I'm just weighing my options. Nothing from my current 350 sbc/4 speed setup will stay, so in the end I will be looking at all new from oil pan to intake, and tranny as well. Would I be better off looking for a low mileage ls dropout with tranny included? Just a long block? Just a short block? Thanks guys.
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Old 09-04-2011, 06:35 PM   #2
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I am assuming you are talking about 500 crank horsepower? With a 6.0 you can do it with a small cam and good heads or a big cam. As the motor gets smaller, you will need more RPM, steeper gears and bigger stall converter to make it all work. But, any of those 3 motors will do it. The 6.0 will just be a lot more driveable and have better torque.
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Old 09-04-2011, 07:25 PM   #3
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i'd buy a ls3 and not do heads and just buy a cam. Or buy a 6.0L truck engine and a set of heads if you like, or big cam and 243 heads, all up to your budget.
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Old 09-05-2011, 06:56 AM   #4
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I am assuming you are talking about 500 crank horsepower? With a 6.0 you can do it with a small cam and good heads or a big cam. As the motor gets smaller, you will need more RPM, steeper gears and bigger stall converter to make it all work. But, any of those 3 motors will do it. The 6.0 will just be a lot more driveable and have better torque.
No stall converter, this will be a manual setup.

Yes, 500hp at the crank is my goal, but a nice torqy (sp?) motor is really what I want.
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Old 09-05-2011, 07:07 AM   #5
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i'd buy a ls3 and not do heads and just buy a cam. Or buy a 6.0L truck engine and a set of heads if you like, or big cam and 243 heads, all up to your budget.
I'm assuming the ls3's heads are already big enough and a cam will get me where I want. Is there an advantage to an ls3 over a 6.0 truck engine or vice versa?

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all up to your budget.
Ain't that the truth. I'm not really sure what the budget is to be honest. Originally I was thinking $5000 for the engine and another $2500 for the transmission when I was looking at non ls engines. But that can increase, it would just take a little longer to get there. I'd rather wait a little longer and not sacrifice on quality. I'd also like something that I can build on in the future if/when I get the hp itch again.
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Old 09-05-2011, 08:54 AM   #6
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No stall converter, this will be a manual setup.

Yes, 500hp at the crank is my goal, but a nice torqy (sp?) motor is really what I want.
Sounds like you should have a look at 3Pedals set up. In his signature he says L92 heads, baby cam and low 11 second quarter miles. Could it get any better than that?
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Old 09-08-2011, 08:29 AM   #7
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i have to agree that the 6.0 will be the most streetable at that hp range the cam will not have to be crazy a good set of l92 heads and beehive springs, Texas speed and performance cam (personal favorite Texas Speed 228R 228/228 .588"/.588" Camshaft) and your right there add a shot if your so inclined(around 125-150) and your moving into the 500 plus neighborhood on a low buck budget that your wife can live with and so can your neighbors. If you can buy a 5.3 you can buy a 6.0 just wait a week or a month who cares. The advantages of using the 4.00 bore with the better rectangular head better cam selection for less mods far out way the savings on the initial motor purchase.
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Old 09-08-2011, 11:58 AM   #8
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If you run the L92/LS3 heads, make sure you get a cam that is designed for them. They prefer a wider split pattern than the cathedral port LS1/LS2/LS6 heads.
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Old 09-08-2011, 12:25 PM   #9
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I found a LY6 code 6.0L from a 2500 truck in the junkyard for 1500, I removed the vvt, added a comp 227/235 114+4 cam and a set of good dual valvesprings, and no other engine changes it has run a best of 11.39 @ 120 in the 1/4. In the heat of the summer, it goes 11.5x`s at 119, that works out to around 430ish rwhp. Any oldschool std trans can be used, you just need a couple small things to make it work.
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Old 09-08-2011, 12:28 PM   #10
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I found a LY6 code 6.0L from a 2500 truck in the junkyard for 1500, I removed the vvt, added a comp 227/235 114+4 cam and a set of good dual valvesprings, and no other engine changes it has run a best of 11.39 @ 120 in the 1/4. In the heat of the summer, it goes 11.5x`s at 119, that works out to around 430ish rwhp. Any oldschool std trans can be used, you just need a couple small things to make it work.
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At what RPM are you shifting?
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Old 09-08-2011, 12:31 PM   #11
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at what rpm are you shifting?
7000rpm
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Old 09-08-2011, 03:09 PM   #12
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i dont think a 5.3 will make 500 hp at the crank n/a,, unless spinning to the moon.. get a 6.0,, i have ly6 ,with mild cam..thing absoulty moves.. selling the carb stuff..going back efi..with a 76mm turbo.. thats a whole nother world. .. You'll be happy with a cammed 6.0,, for now..
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Old 09-09-2011, 06:49 AM   #13
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Ok, thanks again guys. I have all winter to look for a deal on a motor and 6.0 sounds like the way to go.

Any advantage of a Gen III vs Gen IV? Cost/availability of parts? Strength of block, etc? Is an aluminum block worth the extra cost? It won't be a track car, so weight savings isn't crucial, if that money could be better spent on other parts.

If I can find a drop out motor with the transmission, are the stock manual tranny's worth having, or am I better off going with a T56 or TKO setup?
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Old 09-09-2011, 11:49 AM   #14
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My car at 3450 pounds, stock LQ4 with a Trex cam goes 7.1 all day in the 1/8th mile, so a set of heads and it might be nailing 6.8-6.9, that is 10 second territory for the 1/4 mile and i got the motor for 700$ from the scrap yard.

I have the 6.0 that is a GEN III, the 4.8 and 5.3 i have are GEN IV. When swapping a cam in a GEN IV you need to swap timing gears if using a 3 bolt cam that is easier to find.

Otherwise, the GEN IV have the newer rods that are said to be stronger, i run my 5.3 and older 6.0 to 7200 RPM, so either way.
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Old 09-09-2011, 11:55 AM   #15
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lQ9 with ls6 heads eps 236/248 .617 lift. 453 rwhp through a 3800 stall turbo 400 and moser 9". 91 mustang 10.50@128.88 so far.
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Old 09-09-2011, 08:51 PM   #16
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My car at 3450 pounds, stock LQ4 with a Trex cam goes 7.1 all day in the 1/8th mile, so a set of heads and it might be nailing 6.8-6.9, that is 10 second territory for the 1/4 mile and i got the motor for 700$ from the scrap yard.

I have the 6.0 that is a GEN III, the 4.8 and 5.3 i have are GEN IV. When swapping a cam in a GEN IV you need to swap timing gears if using a 3 bolt cam that is easier to find.

Otherwise, the GEN IV have the newer rods that are said to be stronger, i run my 5.3 and older 6.0 to 7200 RPM, so either way.
I dont get why my 6.0 is way slower than everyone elses. 12.68@109.
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Old 09-10-2011, 12:21 AM   #17
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I dont get why my 6.0 is way slower than everyone elses. 12.68@109.
1. Your car is heavy.
2. Are you running slicks?
3. Do you have a stock cam? (I bet you do)
4. Are your heads ported? (per your MPH, not likely).

Most of the guys here the run a 6.0L have a large cam or ported heads or both. A stock 6.0 in a heavy car I would expect to run mid to high 12s after being converted to carb and using long tubes.

*edit*

I see you're running a Comp 269HR cam. That's not much bigger than the LS6 cam. And with 243 heads, I bet you're not making more than 450hp. That and your heavy car and no slicks = not really fast...yet not really slow either. I bet it drives nice.
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Old 09-10-2011, 01:30 AM   #18
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I dont get why my 6.0 is way slower than everyone elses. 12.68@109.
12.68 is still fun, and quicker than just about everything driving up the highway.
109 mph tells me that you are making at least 420hp, which means that your car is not 60-foot'ing well at all.

***edit: uh...err...well, just a few misread weight numbers by me....realistically more in the 360-380hp range ***


Your car is slower because you spec'ed out and purchased the parts for a nicely running 12.68 combo!

You installed a tight converter, highway gearing, and a very mild cam.
- If you are wanting to go faster, you will need to address these issues.

Looser Torque Converter
Deeper Rear gear
Bigger Cam

Last edited by topbrent; 09-11-2011 at 04:08 AM..
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Old 09-10-2011, 08:10 AM   #19
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12.68 is still fun, and quicker than just about everything driving up the highway.
109 mph tells me that you are making at least 420hp
According to the popular drag race calculator formulas, he is making 362 hp.
http://www.hotrodpitstop.com/tools.html#0

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Your car is slower because you spec'ed out and purchased the parts for a nicely running 12.68 combo!

You installed a tight converter, highway gearing, mild cam and a small carb.
- If you are wanting to go faster, you will need to address these issues.
Pretty much what I told Gjestico in his thread:
Chevelle 6.0
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Old 09-10-2011, 02:39 PM   #20
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My internet calculator can beat up your internet calculator.....

I used his MPH to figure the relative HP, as his ET isn't representing the theoretical power production at all.

3950lbs, 109mph ***EDIT: should read 3590lbs ***

http://www.wallaceracing.com/et-hp-mph.php

Gear and converter are the biggest issues holding back the potential of his present combo.
Car would probably pick up close to a half second with an optomized converter and gear change, as the HP is already there.

Last edited by topbrent; 09-11-2011 at 04:09 AM..
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Old 09-10-2011, 02:39 PM
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