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1998 z28 Street Beast Build - "VENOM"

Old 10-29-2017, 03:46 PM
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Default 1998 z28 Street Beast Build - "VENOM"

Hi guys, I recently became the owner of a 98 z28 and I'm trying to turn it into a street beast that still can be a daily driver, but that I can also take to the track to show off when I want. Trying to more or less be like a hellcat with the reliability and power in one package, but better. This will be sort of a budget build, but I will put more money in where it is needed. I'm looking to get around 1000 to the crank, while still being able to be streetable and can be a DD. MPGs for me is not a big deal, if I can get around 13-17 and be happy with it. I torn between what engine to build, I've been told that a modern LS motor will literally bolt in and work so I'm thinking of going that route. I'm planning right now to go fully forged 5.3 and supercharge it. Will this be a reliable build to get to my goal? I'm pretty new to the LS scene and just trying to get 1000 to the crank, but it also not be too much on the pocket. I also have a chance at either a 5.3 block to build, a 6.0 and a old school 454. Which one do you guys think would do better? Also looking for a nice automatic trans that can handle the power and still give snappy, firm shifts. I know this kind of horsepower will cost money and I'm willing to spend that, but not trying to overspend on unnecessary stuff that I could have went without. Also its a shell and already has a cage installed, which I'm actually pleased with because I get to fully build it around the cage. I'm looking to do nice interior nothing too fancy, racing bucket seats that are still comfortable to sit in and be in for a while. Also looking to do a nice dash in the car whether that be aftermarket or stock. I'm looking for some nice interior,Any help, words of wisdom, guidance, builds, knowledge is welcome. Thank you guys in advance.
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Old 10-30-2017, 09:35 AM
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Ok, I'm probably going to come off sounding like a bit of an *******, but trust me when I say it comes from a nice place. So..... here we go: I don't think you have an obtainable goal. I will highlight some areas of your post that led me to this conclusion:

Originally Posted by Chantro View Post
Hi guys, I recently became the owner of a 98 z28 and I'm trying to turn it into a street beast that still can be a daily driver, but that I can also take to the track to show off when I want. Trying to more or less be like a hellcat with the reliability and power in one package, but better. This will be sort of a budget build, but I will put more money in where it is needed. I'm looking to get around 1000 to the crank, while still being able to be streetable and can be a DD. MPGs for me is not a big deal, if I can get around 13-17 and be happy with it. I torn between what engine to build, I've been told that a modern LS motor will literally bolt in and work so I'm thinking of going that route. I'm planning right now to go fully forged 5.3 and supercharge it. Will this be a reliable build to get to my goal? I'm pretty new to the LS scene and just trying to get 1000 to the crank, but it also not be too much on the pocket. I also have a chance at either a 5.3 block to build, a 6.0 and a old school 454. Which one do you guys think would do better? Also looking for a nice automatic trans that can handle the power and still give snappy, firm shifts. I know this kind of horsepower will cost money and I'm willing to spend that, but not trying to overspend on unnecessary stuff that I could have went without. Also its a shell and already has a cage installed, which I'm actually pleased with because I get to fully build it around the cage. I'm looking to do nice interior nothing too fancy, racing bucket seats that are still comfortable to sit in and be in for a while. Also looking to do a nice dash in the car whether that be aftermarket or stock. I'm looking for some nice interior,Any help, words of wisdom, guidance, builds, knowledge is welcome. Thank you guys in advance.
Your entire post is full of conflicting statements. I honestly do not think you truly understand how much it takes to not only build a 1,000hp car, but to make it perform reliably and operate consistently, day after day, in all weather conditions for years on end. It's not cheap. Add to that fact that you're also wanting to do a nice interior in a shell that has already been stripped..... Yea, nothing about your build is feasible if you're being budget minded. A new Hellcat is $60k, you will not be able to build your car to meet or exceed the Hellcat on every point by spending less than that on your 98 Z28 shell. Can you make 1,000hp with less than $60k? Yes, you can. Can you make 1,000hp with a comfy enough interior to DD, fully built suspension that can handle that power and plant it on the street to make it useful, fully plumbed fuel system to feed your engine, fully built transmission to handle the power, fully thought out and executed cooling system for engine/trans/power steering systems to keep them cool so you can use them in daily driven conditions, fully built engine and power adder set up that is of a high enough grade to perform consistently and reliably every day in all conditions for $60k? No. Not unless you have excellent fabrication skills, mini machine shop, interior know how, and the knowledge / skill to put it all together and do it all yourself. Even then you'd probably be pretty hard pressed to do it for that kind of budget.

Look, if you want to even get remotely close to your vision of a fourth gen F-Body Hellcat slayer, your best bet would be to wait until one of the guys on here is selling their fully built car that they dropped $40k-$50k in for $30k. Then it will have the suspension fully built, fuel system plumbed, interior there and in good shape with a rollcage installed, and a good engine / trans to start with or sell to fund your new build for more power. Even then, you'll be knocking on that $60k threshold pretty quick. The Hellcat is a lot of car for the money and that's one of the reasons it has sold so well. You just can't do what Dodge did for that cheap and have it tick off all the boxes from power to comfort to reliability. That's the power of a big corporation, they can afford to lose money on the Hellcat because the buzz generated by the Hellcat interested people to go look at and buy other Challenger models (which will make Dodge money) that they may not have previously.

Like I said earlier, I'm not meaning for this to come off as me being an *******. I'm not trying to be. I just think you should really rethink some aspects of your build and try to bring your expectations into alignment with reality. Good luck with your project and keep us updated on any progress you make with it.
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Old 10-30-2017, 10:18 AM
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Don't know if a 5.3 or a 454 is the better choice? Keep dreaming kiddo.
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Old 10-30-2017, 12:15 PM
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hahahahaha I did a budget build.......I have 12k in just the motor. quality fast and cheap .......you can only have 2.

Not to discourage, but listen to what is being said here. If this is your goal, set out a plan with enough time and money anything is possible. You just need a plan...preferably one that makes sense. Id also add dont get stuck on a HP number, thats what I did and for a street car you reach a point where it becomes useless power especially if you are gonna daily it.

450HP in an fbody with a good suspension setup is gonna be a really fun car. Relatively easy to achieve and give you a much better feel for what is involved in the goal you described above. Id recomend learning more about the fbody rather than jumping all in on your first go around.
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Old 10-30-2017, 12:48 PM
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Originally Posted by TechCam97 View Post
Ok, I'm probably going to come off sounding like a bit of an *******, but trust me when I say it comes from a nice place. So..... here we go: I don't think you have an obtainable goal. I will highlight some areas of your post that led me to this conclusion:



Your entire post is full of conflicting statements. I honestly do not think you truly understand how much it takes to not only build a 1,000hp car, but to make it perform reliably and operate consistently, day after day, in all weather conditions for years on end. It's not cheap. Add to that fact that you're also wanting to do a nice interior in a shell that has already been stripped..... Yea, nothing about your build is feasible if you're being budget minded. A new Hellcat is $60k, you will not be able to build your car to meet or exceed the Hellcat on every point by spending less than that on your 98 Z28 shell. Can you make 1,000hp with less than $60k? Yes, you can. Can you make 1,000hp with a comfy enough interior to DD, fully built suspension that can handle that power and plant it on the street to make it useful, fully plumbed fuel system to feed your engine, fully built transmission to handle the power, fully thought out and executed cooling system for engine/trans/power steering systems to keep them cool so you can use them in daily driven conditions, fully built engine and power adder set up that is of a high enough grade to perform consistently and reliably every day in all conditions for $60k? No. Not unless you have excellent fabrication skills, mini machine shop, interior know how, and the knowledge / skill to put it all together and do it all yourself. Even then you'd probably be pretty hard pressed to do it for that kind of budget.

Look, if you want to even get remotely close to your vision of a fourth gen F-Body Hellcat slayer, your best bet would be to wait until one of the guys on here is selling their fully built car that they dropped $40k-$50k in for $30k. Then it will have the suspension fully built, fuel system plumbed, interior there and in good shape with a rollcage installed, and a good engine / trans to start with or sell to fund your new build for more power. Even then, you'll be knocking on that $60k threshold pretty quick. The Hellcat is a lot of car for the money and that's one of the reasons it has sold so well. You just can't do what Dodge did for that cheap and have it tick off all the boxes from power to comfort to reliability. That's the power of a big corporation, they can afford to lose money on the Hellcat because the buzz generated by the Hellcat interested people to go look at and buy other Challenger models (which will make Dodge money) that they may not have previously.

Like I said earlier, I'm not meaning for this to come off as me being an *******. I'm not trying to be. I just think you should really rethink some aspects of your build and try to bring your expectations into alignment with reality. Good luck with your project and keep us updated on any progress you make with it.
You didn't come off as ******* man lol. That's why I posted it here and that's for feedback. My thoughts and plans right now are more or less just an outline our brainstorm if you will. I'm not looking for it to be a hellcat slayer that's what my Scat Pack is for, I'm just looking to build a nice street beast. The car itself isn't fully stripped. It still has everything that it originally came with stock except there isn't a rear seat anymore and there's been a cage installed. As far as sinking money into it, good knows I know that aspect, this isn't my first build and I don't expect for this to be any different than any of my other builds. This build is going to take time and money and I have no problem with that at all. I'm just trying to get all the thoughts together to envision the car complete now so the road to completion can be a little smoother. I won't need much fabrication at all since majority of everything is there. The biggest fabrication is probably going to be the suspension, mainly the rear which myself and friends can do in my buddies shop. The next biggest piece after that will be the sound system which I can do mostly by myself. Right now I'm just building up a set gamelan that will carry me in the right direction.
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Old 10-30-2017, 12:51 PM
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Originally Posted by AnotherWs6 View Post
Don't know if a 5.3 or a 454 is the better choice? Keep dreaming kiddo.
Oh, thank you captain wisdom smh .
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Old 10-30-2017, 01:00 PM
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Originally Posted by blackbyrd View Post
hahahahaha I did a budget build.......I have 12k in just the motor. quality fast and cheap .......you can only have 2.

Not to discourage, but listen to what is being said here. If this is your goal, set out a plan with enough time and money anything is possible. You just need a plan...preferably one that makes sense. Id also add dont get stuck on a HP number, thats what I did and for a street car you reach a point where it becomes useless power especially if you are gonna daily it.

450HP in an fbody with a good suspension setup is gonna be a really fun car. Relatively easy to achieve and give you a much better feel for what is involved in the goal you described above. Id recomend learning more about the fbody rather than jumping all in on your first go around.
Lol of course it's not going to be cheap. I don't know why when you guys see budget build and think I'm trying to just spend a couple hundred soon and have the car, of course not. Also I do know a good bit about the f-body just thought I would come to this site to see how others have went about their builds. Time, money, and patient are definitely needed for every build and I know that. This isn't my first go-around and that's exactly what I'm doing. I'm just getting a build sheet and a gameplan ready so when I do start building the car, there will be minimal hiccups. And 12k in the motor is basically where I'm going with this motor as well but it helps when you know where to get parts that are quality and also well priced so that should help my pocket some lol. And I need more my daily already has 500 so I'm doing something bigger. Of course as you plan to go up on HP the streetability goes down and the price goes up of course that's to be expected and I'm planning that note so later when building it's almost painless.
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Old 10-30-2017, 01:28 PM
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in that case 6.0 iron block and boosted would probably be the most streetable/reliable application, done right would be pretty mild mannered on the low end . That kind of power all motor would not make for a great daily.

id look into redline interior for some of their stuff, unless you want to go full custom. Wrapping the stock parts does a huge service to making the interior not feel like cheap plastic. I dont have a back seat either I made an amp rack and wrapped it in ebony leather. not super complex just slopes from teh trunk deck down the the lower seat mount.

it wasnt the part about a budget that red flagged as much as the stream of consciousness description of the project. out of context and just in text, it came across as someone who didnt know a whole lot about automotive and seeing it was your first post...... you know assumptions and all.

Last edited by blackbyrd; 10-30-2017 at 01:36 PM.
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Old 10-30-2017, 03:34 PM
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Originally Posted by blackbyrd View Post
in that case 6.0 iron block and boosted would probably be the most streetable/reliable application, done right would be pretty mild mannered on the low end . That kind of power all motor would not make for a great daily.

id look into redline interior for some of their stuff, unless you want to go full custom. Wrapping the stock parts does a huge service to making the interior not feel like cheap plastic. I dont have a back seat either I made an amp rack and wrapped it in ebony leather. not super complex just slopes from teh trunk deck down the the lower seat mount.

it wasnt the part about a budget that red flagged as much as the stream of consciousness description of the project. out of context and just in text, it came across as someone who didnt know a whole lot about automotive and seeing it was your first post...... you know assumptions and all.
No doubt man and yeah I know I'm new to the site and of course majority of newbies are noobs when it comes to cars in general but thankfully I know a good little bit. As far as interior I'm probably gonna go nice after market racing seats, but as far as that the rest of the interior will be stock granted I may put a sound system in there. That amp rack sounds nice man I've been thinking about that idea as well. Oh and yeah the reason I asked that question about the engines is because as far as ease I'm pretty sure a 5.3 will bolt in no problem and a 6.0 will be a little harder but not much but a old school 454 is unknown, uncharted territory for me so I'm not sure how that would bolt up. Yeah I was ultimately thinking of a nice forged and supercharged 6.0.
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Old 10-30-2017, 04:47 PM
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externally the 5.3 6.0 and ls1 and ls2 to a degree are no different. all you would need is the fbody oil pan and accessories, you can play with that arrangement a bit depending on if you are keeping AC or not. Trucks have a hi ram style intake though so you would need to convert to the ls low profile type. Well thats not absolutely true you could do a holly hi ram I cant remember if the fast intake is suitable for boosted applications or not. My plan was always to be NA so I never considered boost. The blocks them selves though no difference, my setup is a 6.0 block. one bolt hole will need to be drilled and tapped on the driver side for one of the alternator bolts to use the fbody serp configuration though.

one thing that will need to be considered is ECM/ wiring harness. It can run the older 5.3 and 6.0 just fine. You will need to do some digging on the newer ones though as DOD comes into the equation, it can be removed just need be aware of it if you pick up a pull out motor.

There is actually a build thread where a guy put in an old school 455 in im not sure what all was involved but yeah completely different animals plus bigblock vs small block. looked neat as hell though do a search in the firebird section for 455 pontiac it should pop up.
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Old 10-30-2017, 06:47 PM
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Originally Posted by blackbyrd View Post
externally the 5.3 6.0 and ls1 and ls2 to a degree are no different. all you would need is the fbody oil pan and accessories, you can play with that arrangement a bit depending on if you are keeping AC or not. Trucks have a hi ram style intake though so you would need to convert to the ls low profile type. Well thats not absolutely true you could do a holly hi ram I cant remember if the fast intake is suitable for boosted applications or not. My plan was always to be NA so I never considered boost. The blocks them selves though no difference, my setup is a 6.0 block. one bolt hole will need to be drilled and tapped on the driver side for one of the alternator bolts to use the fbody serp configuration though.

one thing that will need to be considered is ECM/ wiring harness. It can run the older 5.3 and 6.0 just fine. You will need to do some digging on the newer ones though as DOD comes into the equation, it can be removed just need be aware of it if you pick up a pull out motor.

There is actually a build thread where a guy put in an old school 455 in im not sure what all was involved but yeah completely different animals plus bigblock vs small block. looked neat as hell though do a search in the firebird section for 455 pontiac it should pop up.
Cool, I definitely look that build up. Also, think you for the information and the plan right now is to just pick up a buildable block. I've seen that they are generally less-expensive than a full, pulled engine. I'm probably going to keep AC, which I already know throws a wrench in the process, but I'll figure that out when I come to that stage. Yeah I'm probably going to go with a more updated engine that ran DOD, but even though I'm going newer engine I'm still going to just get it removed. That's my ideal setup though, a fully forged and boosted 6.0, with a Ford 9' rear and built suspension.
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Old 10-30-2017, 08:16 PM
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I'm more or less going to pretty much replica this build. I'm going to tweak and upgrade parts as necessary to support and handle 800-1000 hp. Is it a stretch? Yeah maybe. Is it doable? Most likely. I will find out soon lol.

http://www.trucktrend.com/how-to/eng...-engine-build/
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Old 10-31-2017, 12:18 AM
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Well I'll say this, I don't think you have ever had a ride in a 1000hp fbody let alone drive one. Also if your looking for "hellcat type speed and power" a 600hp fbody will destroy a fatcat so I'd say build for 6-650 and see how you like it. With a goal of 600 you can do a stock 5.3 with a turbo then focus the rest of your funds on suspension, wheels, and interior.
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Old 10-31-2017, 12:23 AM
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Originally Posted by Chantro
I'm more or less going to pretty much replica this build. I'm going to tweak and upgrade parts as necessary to support and handle 800-1000 hp. Is it a stretch? Yeah maybe. Is it doable? Most likely. I will find out soon lol.

http://www.trucktrend.com/how-to/eng...-engine-build/
That article is laughable, seems like a pretty generous dyno since they made 671hp with 50lb injectors. That blowed won't support your goals either so just make a new plan.
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Old 10-31-2017, 08:01 PM
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Go on Craigslist and get a built 6.0 ls engine that was built for turbo, then your going to have to buy your own turbo and all that goes with it, and like someone said above your going to need a transmission that can handle the power... You can get the engine and turbo for maybe 5000-6000 MAYBE!!!!!! BUT YOUR TRANSMISSION WILL COST THAT BY ITSELF. at least. Rear end ECT..... And rigidity becomes a factor and that's not cheap unless you can do it yourself and programming and fuel management will be more money you might be able to get 600hp for around 10K $ and it be drivable. And that's looking everywhere for the best deal on parts. Probably nothing new as far as parts go. I'm trying to build a 1998 Z28 Camaro also but I'm going N/A, and I'll hoping to get this LS7 for 1700$ re-buildable core. Then I'm going to save up and every eventually buy a pair of mercury racing SB4 VVT heads. Google mercury racing SB4 and you'll see what I'm talking about and why I want it. It's capable of close to 800 HP @ 8000rpm. WOW.. but you may want to shop for an already built car. You might find what your looking for 4 less than it costs to build yourself.
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Old 11-01-2017, 11:30 AM
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Engine, Trans, and rear will be a decent amount of money to reliably hold that power. All the little stuff though is where the cost really add up. I just built my car stroker 408 iron block with a single turbo and the little stuff is what really blind sides you.
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Old 11-07-2017, 08:23 AM
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I'm new to the LS camp as well. I'm not looking to get into anything crazy and big as of yet. but you can find an SS for an example that is already turn key street ready making in the 500hp range. prices may vary but I've seen them going for 12k. I paid 5k for mine and its 100% stock. now I also have an 03 cobra that I had a Boss 5.0 built for it. just like you I wanted a motor that can handle close to 900rwhp. the motor alone was 13k. not including the Whipple charger, fuel system etc etc lol. You will find the weak links in your car real quick once you start romping on it or in my case having it tuned and finding out the fuel system wasn't up to the task lol. basically what we are all saying is don't plan on a budget
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Old 11-07-2017, 10:28 AM
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Originally Posted by krunkcat View Post
Go on Craigslist and get a built 6.0 ls engine that was built for turbo, then your going to have to buy your own turbo and all that goes with it, and like someone said above your going to need a transmission that can handle the power... You can get the engine and turbo for maybe 5000-6000 MAYBE!!!!!! BUT YOUR TRANSMISSION WILL COST THAT BY ITSELF. at least. Rear end ECT..... And rigidity becomes a factor and that's not cheap unless you can do it yourself and programming and fuel management will be more money you might be able to get 600hp for around 10K $ and it be drivable. And that's looking everywhere for the best deal on parts. Probably nothing new as far as parts go. I'm trying to build a 1998 Z28 Camaro also but I'm going N/A, and I'll hoping to get this LS7 for 1700$ re-buildable core. Then I'm going to save up and every eventually buy a pair of mercury racing SB4 VVT heads. Google mercury racing SB4 and you'll see what I'm talking about and why I want it. It's capable of close to 800 HP @ 8000rpm. WOW.. but you may want to shop for an already built car. You might find what your looking for 4 less than it costs to build yourself.
I thought about buying an already built car, but that's no fun. I'm going the DIY route and just building one myself. I also am going to build the engine myself so I know exactly what is going in the engine and what it should be capable of. I've already picked up a 5.3 bare block for $100 and I'm just going to do a supercharged and forged 383 stroker. I'm going supercharged because its just more independent to me and doesn't need a extra amount of stuff to function. I know this is going to cost money and that's fine with me, I have no problem with this costing money. As far as the programming, fuel management, etc I'm still looking for a shop to do it in my area, but I already have a generalized quote so I already know what to expect with that. The transmission is isn't going to cost me that much, but I would say it will push me about 3-4000 depending on how I go about getting a trans. Thank you for that idea, never heard of Mercury Racing, but I see they actually are pretty top notch and have a couple parts I might can use. Thank you
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Old 11-07-2017, 10:47 AM
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Originally Posted by KyleLanter View Post
Engine, Trans, and rear will be a decent amount of money to reliably hold that power. All the little stuff though is where the cost really add up. I just built my car stroker 408 iron block with a single turbo and the little stuff is what really blind sides you.
Definitely the little stuff. This isn't my first build, its just my first "full, it needs just about everything" build. The big stuff I know what to expect, it's always those little pieces that eat the budget. Your build sounds like a monster, what are you putting down?
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Old 11-07-2017, 10:54 AM
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Originally Posted by trixieSS View Post
I'm new to the LS camp as well. I'm not looking to get into anything crazy and big as of yet. but you can find an SS for an example that is already turn key street ready making in the 500hp range. prices may vary but I've seen them going for 12k. I paid 5k for mine and its 100% stock. now I also have an 03 cobra that I had a Boss 5.0 built for it. just like you I wanted a motor that can handle close to 900rwhp. the motor alone was 13k. not including the Whipple charger, fuel system etc etc lol. You will find the weak links in your car real quick once you start romping on it or in my case having it tuned and finding out the fuel system wasn't up to the task lol. basically what we are all saying is don't plan on a budget
Dropping 12K all at once isn't a real option for me right now so that's why I'm building the 98. Plus I've already had a camaro and I'm good on those, this model camaro is secretly my favorite dream car and that's really why I'm building it myself. As far as the motor goes, of course that's going to be expensive lol. 13k though isn't that bad, I'm probably going to give about 20k of the budget towards just the engine alone. I've already said that this build will take awhile whether it be months or years, all that really matters to me is that I finish it. That definitely sounds like me lmao; I'm definitely trying to crackdown on all the weak spots and I'm honestly changing 95% of car to new or better parts. The supercharger will definitely be one of the biggest eaters to the budget, but I'm prepared for how my banks statements are going to look lol.
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