View Full Version : What oil pan for LS6 road race/HPDE?


jmarsa
08-04-2011, 01:15 PM
I have a 2004 CTS-V LS6 which is going into a tube chassis car with race rubber. I can pick any pan and would prefer a cast/OEM pan based on sealing/strength, although I can be persuaded if there's a fool proof solution for the LS6.

I want to take reasonable and cost effective measures without going full dry sump since I only have about 4K in the used engine.

What oil pan protects from oil starvation in the long sweepers better?

The C5 [edit] batwing:

http://i2.photobucket.com/albums/y20/PerthPurplePenguin/car%20parts/oil_pans.jpg

or the Corvette LS2:

http://image.gmhightechperformance.com/f/8905498/0405htp_ls2_09_z.jpg

Would a pan baffle help as well? I think an Accusump to augment the set-up would the the final band-aid.

Sort of related, it looks as if making sure the pan uses a PF48 filter (either OEM or through the use of an adapter) as this filter is not "dry" and holds oil to prevent a dry start up.


Thank in advance,

--JMarsa

SIK02SS
08-04-2011, 01:38 PM
IIRC, the ls2 has its own bat wing version. If so I would say that or the ls6 bat wing. Also there's a so.cal based company called aviaid that can build road race application baffles for near any pan. They have one for the bat wing ls6 if you call (it was used to dyno my last race motor). Skip the accusump, it really won't help with anything. Get a melling high flow race pump (make sure its the race version, Vengeance is the only seller here I know of).

LS6s really don't have oiling issues like the 2/3/7s. Youll be fine with about any pan with baffling and the race oil pump.

jmarsa
08-04-2011, 02:07 PM
Based on my research here and on the 'Vette sites, the LS2 'Vette pan (pictured above) has internal baffles that (according to GM) were supposed to be better than the batwing design. But one needs to keep in mind that the LS6 is a gen III motor while the LS2 is a gen IV, one of the differences is that the gen IV motors have an additional bolt hole on the pan rail.

SIK02SS, I see you have a lot of track time so I appreciate your input.

I also just found a post from Tony Mamo @ AFR who gives the nod for the batwing:

Unfortunately the original "batwing" pan is far superior to the LS2/LS3 style pan when your discussing oil control and windage losses. If your drag or road racing especially the batwing pan is the way to go....probably has 3X the amount of oil control and better baffling.

The batwing pan also holds 1 QT more = higher capcity.

So far, I'm leaning to the batwing...

--JMarsa

kmspruill242
08-04-2011, 02:44 PM
I'm not sure if Improved racing sells a baffle system for any other pan than the Fbody pan. So if you can get a Fbody pan, Improved Racing sells a very nice trap door baffle for 299. This is the setup I'm using in my build.

1981TA
08-06-2011, 08:44 PM
I went with an LS1 two-piece Batwing in my 2nd gen TA. Fits pretty well, but had to add a second oil drain plug (yellow arrow), because the original (red arrow) would dump oil onto my frame. Auto trans (pictured) has been removed to make space for a LS1 T56. Road racing will begin next season.

http://www.silverblade.net/images/car/oilpan.jpg

AsEpSiS
08-07-2011, 12:03 AM
How about a Moroso 21150 oil pan with oil filter relocation kit? Im currently building a H/C/I Ls6 for RR and AX and thats the route I went with. It was expensive as hell, so I hope it's worth it! lol
Does anyone have any feedback, or know anyone that used this oil pan set up?......I'm not trying to steal this thread.....just tying to add to it.

lubelizard
08-12-2011, 10:29 AM
I must respectfully disagree with running a high volume oil pump. High pressure perhaps. Precisionoilpumps.com blueprints LS style pumps. I've used their pumps in Ford and LS engines.

SIK02SS
08-12-2011, 11:38 AM
In regards to an oil pump, what's the difference between a high volume and high pressure? Think about it...if it's the same size and type of pump, but one is higher pressure, doesn't that mean it is flowing a higher volume...? The only way a oil pump can read a higher pressure is if it's flowing more volume ;)

A Melling 10296 is the pump you want..NOT the 10295

lubelizard
08-16-2011, 09:31 PM
In regards to an oil pump, what's the difference between a high volume and high pressure? Think about it...if it's the same size and type of pump, but one is higher pressure, doesn't that mean it is flowing a higher volume...? The only way a oil pump can read a higher pressure is if it's flowing more volume ;)

A Melling 10296 is the pump you want..NOT the 10295

If an engine is already receiving the volume of oil it needs to run properly or the maximum volume of oil that it can circulate through the system, then a high volume pump is ONLY going to unnecessarily heat the oil, cause more parasitic power loss, and accelerate wear on the components used to drive the pump. An engine in proper running condition with standard bearing clearances does not need a high volume pump. If an engine needs more oil flow, then there is leakage in the system, in the form of loose bearing clearances, a leaking seal somewhere, or the like. Some racing engines are built with clearances looser than OEM specs, so a higher volume pump may be applicable. However, for the gross majority of us, the standard volume pump is more than adequate.

In addition, a properly sized Accusump most definitely has value in a car destined for the road course. It may be just a crutch for a wet sump system that needs improved oil return and pan, but it is at a minimum an effective crutch nontheless.

SIK02SS
08-17-2011, 04:17 PM
Again explain to me how you get higher oil pressure out of a pump without having a higher volume pump?

Oil pressure is a result of two things: 1) oil flow volume from the pump 2) and resistance to flow throughout the engine. Smaller oil flow passages provide more resistance to flow, and therefore higher system pressure. Larger passages provide less resistance, resulting in lower system pressure.


I'll say it again, LS6 motors don't have oil pressure issues like LS2,3, and 7's do. If you want to be safe and you are running a thinner oil on track, get a Melling hi-flow and keep good pressure throughout the RPM band. An Accusump as stated IS a crutch, and not necessarily an effective one. Plus it adds weight in added equipment and fluid.

lubelizard
08-17-2011, 05:29 PM
Perhaps we're thinking on different concepts.

An oil pump has a relief valve with a spring that puts a prescribed pressure on the valve. Once oil pressure builds up beyond the prescribed pressure of the spring, it opens. The LS oil pump runs with the relief valve open at all but idle and low rpm. The higher the rpm, the more oil the pump is moving through the engine, the more the pressure, the more the relief valve opens. If you want more oil pressure with a stock volume pump, shim the pressure relief spring. If you see an oil pressure drop as rpms increase, then the pump volume is too low for the application. High volume pumps inherently push more oil through the same passages that were formerly fed by the stock volume pump, so the pressure increases because more oil is trying to be forced through the same passages.

Don't listen to me, listen to Lou Gigliotti, who told me in another forum "the stock pump is MORE than ample with a .060 shim. You do not need the melling piece on the road course."

SIK02SS
08-17-2011, 06:39 PM
The Melling 10296 (this is the only pump I am talking about) for the most part does the same as a shimmed and ported LS6 pump (I have used both). The volume flow rates aren't vastly greater to cause issues of over oiling (or draining the oil pan). If you are talking the M365 or 355..then yes possibly depending on your motors needs

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v503/Pumbajr/LSOilPumpSpecs.jpg

Melling states on their website that at most you're getting ~18% more volume (and this isn't 100% of the time) and is also higher pressure via a spring change. The Melling 10296 is not going to over-oil your motor..

and a true track car is going to have an oil cooler if the heat is your concern ;)

SIK02SS
08-18-2011, 11:29 AM
Also as a side note, depending on the oil people run (mobil 1 10w-30, royal purple etc), they are often not suited for high heat that is inherent in HPDE and road racing. These 2 brands in particular (for their over the counter consumer line) break down with the heat and thin out (which also lowers pressure), having the extra volume and pressure in that instance is also not a bad idea.

yooperLS6
09-19-2011, 09:33 PM
Any comments on Amsoil 15W50 in LS6 w/o cats?
What is the advantage of a Blueprinted oil pump such as Katechs on a stock LS6?

Thanks
Also as a side note, depending on the oil people run (mobil 1 10w-30, royal purple etc), they are often not suited for high heat that is inherent in HPDE and road racing. These 2 brands in particular (for their over the counter consumer line) break down with the heat and thin out (which also lowers pressure), having the extra volume and pressure in that instance is also not a bad idea.

SIK02SS
09-19-2011, 10:06 PM
I've never ran Amsoil nor looked into it much. I know a lot of people use it and race on it. A stock oil pump is working off factory tolerances which are acceptable for a street car. a blueprinted pump like Katechs has been gone through and minor adjustments have been made to make it is more suitable for track use so it is consistent in pumping throughout the whole RPM band and not just part of it. I don't know exactly what the process is, but I'm sure they'd be happy to explain over the phone. Our stock pumps suck.

FASTFATBOY
09-29-2011, 05:57 PM
Pressure goes up ......volume goes down and vice versa.

This is a fluid property, think of a water hose that's on with nothing on the end, high volume low pressure. Now put your thumb over the end to spray water like to rinse a car off.......low volume and high pressure.

I grew up in a hydraulic shop lol.

BTW, SLP makes a shim for the oil pump spring to increase pressure. It's a little aluminum button.

lubelizard
09-29-2011, 06:45 PM
You've got it, fluid dynamics.

Katech blueprints their pumps in much the same way as the other vendor I previously stated. The ports are massaged for smoother flow, the internal components are matched properly, and perhaps dry film coated. The pressure spring may also be changed or shimmed a bit. You wind up with a pump that will flow more oil more efficiently, meaning less parasitic drag and less heat generated. Oh wait, let's just add a larger oil cooler to compensate for a crappy idea.

SouthernSon
10-09-2011, 10:55 AM
LS6 batwing, ported and shimmed pump, and accusump. Everyone with whom I run at the track has the same, I believe. Also, install catch can. Great success for several years by many using the same.

240dan
10-15-2011, 01:38 AM
LS6 batwing, ported and shimmed pump, and accusump. Everyone with whom I run at the track has the same, I believe. Also, install catch can. Great success for several years by many using the same.


Southernson, are you running Dot Rs or slicks?

dtfastbear
10-17-2011, 12:29 PM
I'm going to have to disagree with you on the accusump recommendation, Chris. I know that this is often a "religious" issue with the LSx crowd, but my own on-track testing with an LS1 shows that the ONLY way to keep adequate oil pressure in sustained high-g (>~1.25G) left hand turns is with some sort of external assistance (i.e. dry sump or accusump). I have an override switch on my electronically controlled accusump and can easily go through T2 at Thunderhill with the accusump active or inactive. If it's inactive, the oil pressure (with properly baffled pan, slighly overfilled, etc. etc.) will drop well below 25psi. With the accusump active, the pressure will only drop to whatever pressure I've set the accusump to open (about 35psi). I have an adjustable pressure switch.

Given those results, I'll take the extra weight and complexity every day. :)

Just one guy's opinion and observation.

Cheers,

Dean

metros
10-18-2011, 08:18 PM
^^^Is that with stock oil pump or aftermarket?

Just came over to FD with LS1, switching from an s2000. Looking to see the requirements to make this car reliable on track.

dtfastbear
10-18-2011, 09:17 PM
That's stock oil pump and aftermarket oil cooler. I use the lingenfelter adapter right above the stock filter location to plumb the whole thing.

pkincy
10-25-2011, 12:39 AM
Whatever solution you pick you need one. My last 2 track days each cost me a crank and rods in the first 20 minute session. I suppose I should have thought of an oiling problem the first time when I scored the crank and spun the bearings but it wasn't until after I repaired it and it happened again that I realized it is a design problem (at least on hot asphalt with good suspension and race rubber) in a high G situation.

Now I run a digital Oil Pressure guage set to flash at 25 psi and it is about my eye level on the A pillar.

Perry

Scott@GMHTP
11-10-2011, 04:08 PM
Our STI Killer currently runs a stock LS6 (oil pump, cam, etc) with the Improved Racing baffle in an F-body oil pan. To my knowledge there are no issues with oil pressure, consumption or starvation. Those who are familiar with the car can attest it lives a hard life making high-G turns on our test track and Sebring using our BMR suspension and Toyo R888s. We usually run Amsoil 10W30 or Mobil 1 5W30. Should we make some valvetrain upgrades, though, the plan was to go with a blueprinted LS6 oil pump.

http://www.gmhightechperformance.com/tech/lsx_engine/1004gmhtp_ls6_engine_oil_pan_headers_throttle_body _upgrades/index.html

dtfastbear
11-10-2011, 04:23 PM
Sebring has no sustained left hand turns. What about your test track? I've never seen an issue in rights, only long 180 degree LEFT hand fast sweepers.

pkincy
11-10-2011, 04:29 PM
Precisely right. It is left handers that cause the problem.

The Carousel at Sears Point (hint: I am old), many places at California Speedway, Turn 2 at Thunderhill, Talladega Turn when running CCW at Buttonwillow, end of the drag strip on Firebird Main in Phoenix, etc.

Perry

Fb0dy0nly
11-25-2011, 09:33 PM
No one has talked about this setup really here, any thoughts?
http://www.improvedracing.com/product_info.php?products_id=30

Or there is this one too that is suppose to work well..
http://www.mastmotorsports.com/2010/product-view.php?cat=Oil%20Pans&id=160

From what scott says above, seems like the issue is with the pan and baffle system on stock ls pans. If that is the case, these should help resolve oiling issues without the need for coolers or even possibly accusump depening on how much you are thrashing the car in the corners:drive:

dtfastbear
11-28-2011, 11:44 AM
I've used the Improved Racing baffle in a stock F-body pan. I've also used the V8Roadsters pan (my LS1 is in a miata, so there are some swap-specific parts) which has its own baffling. Both are very well made pieces and both work well at keeping the oil in the pan around the pickup. But I believe the real problems with G's are up inside the motor/heads and that the oil doesn't drain down quickly enough. The pan baffles solve part of the problem but not the entire problem. At least that's what my experience has demonstrated. I'm no expert on the cause, but I've got plenty of evidence on the results/outcomes.

Again, I only see the issue on very long, high G (much higher than street applications) left hand corners. YMMV.

Cheers,

Dean

pkincy
11-28-2011, 12:20 PM
Many folks solve or mitigate the problem with a pretty large overfill of the pan.

On the LS1 pan it can hold 7 qts without getting in the way of the baffle or crank apparently.

dtfastbear
11-28-2011, 12:30 PM
What has never been clear to me is exactly what is happening inside the engine that allows the pressure to drop in long lefts...

If enough oil is being trapped up in the motor and not draining back such that the oil pickup starts to scavenge for oil, then a combination of oil pan baffles, lifter tray mods and overfill should absolutely work to eliminate the pressure dip.

If the problem is that the G's somehow cause an interruption in the flow of oil that the oil pump cannot overcome but an Accusump somehow helps (it provides pressure from a slightly different point in the engine), then any amount of overfill or baffles won't rectify the problem. Would a higher pressure oil pump, in that case?

Or, is the problem NOT one of these two simplified options?

Seems like a lot of speculation, but I've yet to see a concrete explanation.

Thoughts?

Cheers,

Dean

Andy1
11-28-2011, 04:01 PM
I've read a lot of discussion on this forum in this regard. I'll speculate it's probably a combination of a couple of things going on in combination, so resolving one of them is not the lone answer, and both would likely be required to fix the problem (or perhaps there's more?).

So baffling the pan is, in my estimation, necessary to control oil sloshing around to prevent or minimize exposing the oil pick up. However, if the volume of oil in the pan is insufficient due to oil being trapped in the heads, the baffled pan is rendered useless. Thus, returning the oil back to the pan where the baffled pan can do its' thing seems like the potential solution.

Oil getting trapped in the heads is not an issue isolated only to the LSx, but it seems to be more prevelant. Employing external oil drain back lines is not a new idea. I have seen where the Arias LSx hemi heads incorporate them, so perhaps they've learned something that many here have speculated on; it's an oil drain back issue. I've also seen external oil drain back lines on SBC's in roadrace applications even when using dry sump. External drain backs are a somewhat un-tidey solution for an occasional track/HPDE car. Perhaps someone has found an effective way to do it internally. Some have said that drilling the plastic pushrod guides helps, but it's not clear how effective that really is in a roadrace application. Thoughts?

Andy1