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Old 08-16-2004, 11:52 PM   #1
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Default LS1/M6 in 55 chevy

Hey everyone, I am wondering if anyone has done this swap in a tri-5 chevy. I already have the motor mounts figured out, but I'm not sure how to setup the clutch hydraulics! Any help is greatly appreciated!
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Old 08-17-2004, 09:31 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 55LS1
Hey everyone, I am wondering if anyone has done this swap in a tri-5 chevy. I already have the motor mounts figured out, but I'm not sure how to setup the clutch hydraulics! Any help is greatly appreciated!
55ls1:

I am putting a the same combo in my '56 Nomad. It looks like all you have to do is to mount the master cylinder at the hole in the firewall where the old clutch rod passed through. Then just drill a hole in the clutch pedal at the appropriate spot and install a pin. I got the pedal assembly out of the F-body when I got the drivetrain, but those pedals look way too small in the '56. I mounted the pedals to a wooden fixture I made to check out the geometry, and it doesnt look hard to do.

I had heard this on the Chevytalk '55-'57 modified forum, and it looks right to me. Check them out at http://www.chevytalk.org/threads/ubbthreads.php. These are the most knowledgeable guys for tri-fives that exist.

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Old 08-17-2004, 09:50 AM   #3
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I'm glad to see some other tri-5's on the board. I'm putting the same combo in my 55. I haven't started on the pedals yet but I was going to try to use the 3 pedal assembly I got from a f-body.
As far as the front motor-mounts, I purchased Street and Performance's adapter and mounts. It moves the engine forward about 3 inches to clear the firewall. I reused my th350 conversion kit for the bellhousing mounts and rear transmission mount. I had to extend the belhousing mount since the motor moved forward.
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Old 08-17-2004, 11:49 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 55chevy
I'm glad to see some other tri-5's on the board. I'm putting the same combo in my 55. I haven't started on the pedals yet but I was going to try to use the 3 pedal assembly I got from a f-body.
As far as the front motor-mounts, I purchased Street and Performance's adapter and mounts. It moves the engine forward about 3 inches to clear the firewall. I reused my th350 conversion kit for the bellhousing mounts and rear transmission mount. I had to extend the belhousing mount since the motor moved forward.
55Chevy:

I was going to try to use the f-body pedals, but they just didn't look right in there, and it looked easier (to me anyway) to just use the existing pedal assembly.

I assume that you had to move the engine forward in order to clear the firewall rather than anything else. I did too, although I had some other things to consider since I am using a custom front clip that incorporates C4 Vette suspension. The engine would fit in the cradle fine, but I had to move it forward to clear the firewall, but not so much that it would hit the steering rack. Next I'll have to work the steering around the headers. Well, as my wife says, it keeps me off the street!

By the way, did you have issues with the M6 and your trans tunnel? I'm wondering about that, but I'll know more when I stick the engine in this week on the mount stands I just finished making.

You can check my build at www.picturetrail.com/t0neking. I havent' updated it with the engine in yet, but I will soon.

Paul
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Old 08-17-2004, 12:29 PM   #5
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Hey guys, I am in the process of building my LS1 right now, so I haven't had a chance to test fit it. I had a 383 SBC with a aftermarket T56 in my 55 for awhile, it worked great, but I had it hooked up with mechanical linkage. The tranny cleared the trans tunnel, but I had to use a sawzall, and clearance the lip where the tunnel and firewall meet. I have earl williams side motormounts and tranny crossmember. The side mounts move the engine 3/4" forward. I want something a little cleaner, and more reliable. That sounds like a good idea to use the exisiting hole for the rod for the master cyl, are you using a factory f-body or aftermarket like wilwood, etc? I want to stick with the factory pedals, (although I bought a lokar gas pedal for converting to a throttle cable) Its cool to hear you guys are doing the same swap! I can't wait to get mine on the road!
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Old 08-17-2004, 01:18 PM   #6
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My car was an auto so I didn't have much to work with on the pedals.

With the S&P mounts, I cleared my manual steering box about a 1/4 inch using '01 fbody manifolds. I believe the tunnel clearance is ok but I haven't put any wiring, sensors, or mechanical connects to the tranny yet.

What exhaust manifolds or headers are y'all using?
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Old 08-17-2004, 01:25 PM   #7
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I got a set of Kooks header flanges, and am going to get a custom set of long tube headers made.
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Old 08-17-2004, 01:55 PM   #8
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ls14me, I just looked at your new engine pictures. You got the whole chi-bang. That's the way to do it. I started out with only an engine w/o accessories and I'm buying it a piece at a time. I am also in the middle of a frame off restore so I'll be forever getting back on the road. The exhaust manifolds on your engine look like the same ones I'm using.
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Old 08-17-2004, 02:10 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 55chevy
ls14me, I just looked at your new engine pictures. You got the whole chi-bang. That's the way to do it. I started out with only an engine w/o accessories and I'm buying it a piece at a time. I am also in the middle of a frame off restore so I'll be forever getting back on the road. The exhaust manifolds on your engine look like the same ones I'm using.
55Chevy:

I purposely shopped for a complete setup like that. I spent a little more money up front, but I got everything you can imagine, up to and including the fuel lines that run from the tank to the engine, the fuel tank, and the vacuum pump out of the car. At least that's what I think that is. This way I will end up saving money. I can use the radiator and condenser and fans in the Nomad, and that alone will save me over $1k. I don't feel like I need one of those fancy Be-Cool radiators or anything like that. I just want to keep it clean and simple.

As for exhaust, I'm not sure the F-body manifolds will work in my situation, but in any case I want headers. S+P sellls a ls1 3/4 header for a C4 corvette that I'm pretty sure will fit. They even offered to sell me a set for cheaper that are just tack-welded. That way I can move the tubes around if I have to, and then finish them myself. I really want full length headers though, because I've heard that LS1s really respond to that. So I may have to make my own. Oh well, my fabbing skills have gotten way better with this Corvette suspension conversion, so I guess I can make some headers.

Are you guys planning to put the PCM in the interior, or in the engine compartment? I'd like to put it under the dash if I can find room, so as to keep the engine bay simple.

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Old 08-17-2004, 02:36 PM   #10
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I bought the extended Painless wiring harness with intentions of locating it out of site but I haven't figured out where. I may get Vintage air later so I want to keep the pcm out of the way. If either of you have air, I'd like to know if you can fit the pcm in under the dash.
55ls1, don't let me steal your thread. jump back in.
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Old 08-17-2004, 03:28 PM   #11
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Did you guys see this car that sold on ebay last week? It is awesome. The bidding ended early so someone forked out some serious cash...
http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/eB...&category=6160
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Old 08-17-2004, 05:49 PM   #12
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That is a sweet car! At this point, I'm thinking it would look cleaner to have an aftermarket type master-cylinder mounted next to the brake master cylinder. What do you guys think about that? I also want to install the PCM inside the car. I was thinking about fabbing up a place to mount it where the pass side vent is in the kick panel. (I'm not using my vents) I am also in the process of a frame off resto, so its going to be a while before I get this thing on the road.
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Old 08-17-2004, 07:04 PM   #13
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That is a nice car! I'm curious how someone would build an entire car and sell it less engine and trans, though. I don't know if I've ever seen that before.

My car is in tolerably good shape, so I'm going to do all the mechanics, and drive it for a year or so to get it all sorted out, then spend a year doing the frame-off. I will be going with Vintage Air and the Pacific Raingear wipers as well.

I know there isn't much room under the dash of one of these things, so I was also thinking of incorporating it into the right side kick panel. That's where GM put them in the 81-87 G bodies anyway.

I'm weighing my options for a wiring harness right now, although I've got to finish the welding on my front clip, get the headers built and the steering installed for my Corvette suspension, so I'm not real close to wiring it yet. Also, since I plan on doing some serious mods to the engine, I think I will go with a Hydroboost setup rather than a vacuum brake booster.

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Old 08-17-2004, 08:17 PM   #14
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Have you test fit the engine? Will the factory f-body oil pan clear the steering, etc? This is one area I wish GMPP would step up to and offer a "muscle car" type pan with a matching pickup. I am building a 422 stroker for my 55 and feel a little uncomfortable even using a S&P oil pan kit with a welded pickup. Thats all I need is a ridge of weld going around the inside of the pickup tube, blocking oil flow @ 6800 rpm!!!
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Old 08-17-2004, 08:55 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 55LS1
Have you test fit the engine? Will the factory f-body oil pan clear the steering, etc? This is one area I wish GMPP would step up to and offer a "muscle car" type pan with a matching pickup. I am building a 422 stroker for my 55 and feel a little uncomfortable even using a S&P oil pan kit with a welded pickup. Thats all I need is a ridge of weld going around the inside of the pickup tube, blocking oil flow @ 6800 rpm!!!
55LS1:

I don't know if you were asking me the question or not. My car has a custom front clip that incorporates a C4 engine cradle. Since the engine fits in it higher relative to a stock Vette, I don't have any clearance issues. C5 Corvette oil pans have a shorter profile with "wings" on either side to give you the oil capacity. I don't know if that will fit in a stock 55 frame or not. Also, the truck LS1s use even a different pan. I don't know what exactly is different about them, but I could look under my '01 Silverado if you want.

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Old 08-17-2004, 09:30 PM   #16
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ls14me, so you actually have a c4 front clip grafted onto your chassis, and you are using the vette "batwing" oil pan? Thanks. Armen
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Old 08-18-2004, 07:11 AM   #17
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Quote:
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ls14me, so you actually have a c4 front clip grafted onto your chassis, and you are using the vette "batwing" oil pan? Thanks. Armen
Armen:

What I am actually using is a C4 engine cradle that is the centerpiece of a front clip that is built around the cradle using a factory '55-'57 frame jig. Since the engine sits a couple of inches higher in the cradle in the '56 than it would in a C4 Vette, the F-body oil pan clears OK. Also, I believe only C5's came with the LS1, so a C4 cradle might be a little roomier anyway.

You can see pics of the clip before I attached it to the car on my website.

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Old 08-18-2004, 09:04 AM   #18
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My engine came with the bat wing vette pan and it wouldn't fit with the S&P motor mounts that brought the engine forward. So, I got a f-body pan and pick-up tube and sent it to S&P for their mod. It fits now with the stock steering. Their welding doesn't look very good and I'm not tickled with the loss of oil capacity either but I didn't see any other options at the time.
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Old 08-18-2004, 12:35 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 55chevy
My engine came with the bat wing vette pan and it wouldn't fit with the S&P motor mounts that brought the engine forward. So, I got a f-body pan and pick-up tube and sent it to S&P for their mod. It fits now with the stock steering. Their welding doesn't look very good and I'm not tickled with the loss of oil capacity either but I didn't see any other options at the time.
How did the modified pickup tube look? Can you see if there is any debris in the tube from welding?
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Old 08-18-2004, 01:35 PM   #20
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I didn't look at it very close but I need to take it back off soon since I screwed up the install. I installed the pan with the engine hanging from the hoist and I don't feel comfortable with the install.
Steve
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Old 08-18-2004, 01:35 PM
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