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Impala Wagon Swap build.

 
Old 08-21-2018, 04:53 PM
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Default Impala Wagon Swap build.



Got most of the big parts, so might as well start a build thread for it.

Car: 1978 Impala Wagon. It big, Its ugly, but it is cool. Currently a Roller. Fairly solid for a car from the Rust belt. Needs its TLC for sure, has some rust but nothing terminal.

Engine: 2005 LQ4. Bone stock truck 6.0., will be backed by a 4l80e most likely.

Plan: Engine will be pretty simple. Swapping some 5.3 heads on for a nice compression bump along with a custom cam trying to keep power in the usable range. Not going for a drag car, just a nice cruiser with plenty of power to make it fun to drive and motivate it nicely down the road. Car will be pretty stock. upgraded sway bars so it doesn't handle as much like a boat, nice wheel/tire combo. eventually painted and made to look respectable. Just want something to take on vacations/road trips. could possibly end my being my DD


Last edited by underpowered; 01-22-2019 at 06:22 PM.
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Old 08-21-2018, 07:02 PM
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THAT'S gonna be a fun car! It WILL take a few by surprise too! LQ4/4L80E.... oh yeah!
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Old 08-21-2018, 07:13 PM
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Originally Posted by G Atsma View Post
THAT'S gonna be a fun car! It WILL take a few by surprise too! LQ4/4L80E.... oh yeah!
that is the plan. Not looking to set the world on fire with it, but it will hopefully surprise a few at a stoplight.
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Old 10-14-2018, 07:57 PM
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Small update. No actual work yet but parts have been ordered to start the engine build. And Might be a trans change in the works as well. try to aquire a T56 for it instead of a boring old auto
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Old 10-14-2018, 08:12 PM
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Originally Posted by underpowered View Post
And Might be a trans change in the works as well. try to aquire a T56 for it instead of a boring old auto
If you get the T56 installed, you'll love it, I run a T56 in the wagon in my sig. They're a little more work to install, but well worth it.
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Old 10-15-2018, 05:58 AM
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Originally Posted by CattleAc View Post
If you get the T56 installed, you'll love it, I run a T56 in the wagon in my sig. They're a little more work to install, but well worth it.
the idea was originally discounted due to cost of a T56, but I have a line on a pretty cheap one that may just work out for the best. Your wagon is awesome BTW, that body style would have been my first choice for a build.
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Old 10-16-2018, 11:38 PM
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Originally Posted by underpowered View Post
the idea was originally discounted due to cost of a T56, but I have a line on a pretty cheap one that may just work out for the best.......
I would install at least some 3.73 gears to go with that transmission.

But hell.....that's just me.

KW
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Old 10-17-2018, 12:10 AM
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Originally Posted by KW Baraka View Post
I would install at least some 3.73 gears to go with that transmission.

But hell.....that's just me.

KW

I run 3.73's in my wagon...they work great as far as I'm concerned...
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Old 10-17-2018, 05:53 AM
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Originally Posted by KW Baraka View Post
I would install at least some 3.73 gears to go with that transmission.

But hell.....that's just me.

KW
a re-gear was planned for sure, most likely along with an upgrade to a 12b or 9" as well. was thinking either 3.73 for the auto, if i do end up with the T56, might go as deep as 4.11 for it.

Originally Posted by CattleAc View Post
I run 3.73's in my wagon...they work great as far as I'm concerned...
Good to know. i was messing around with a gearing calculator yesterday some, with the stock rear, was told it was 2.73 but have not checked myself, the T56 6th gear would be utterly useless. was planning on a regear later, but If i go manual, it will have to come sooner rather than later.
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Old 10-17-2018, 06:57 AM
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I love wagons. Will definately be following this.
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Old 10-17-2018, 09:20 AM
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yea NA 6.0 with a t56 and 2.73 gears would be hilariously long winded and not enjoyable.

1st would go to like 78mph.
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Old 10-17-2018, 10:51 PM
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I run the 2006 GTO T56 (TUET-2066)...it has the 2.97 low gear ratio. This makes for quite spirited low gear blasts with the 3.73's. I don't think I'd go any lower than 4.10's unless your going to spend a lot of time at the strip. (The Camaro/ Firebird T56 has a 2.66 low gear)

With a 28" tire, I'm running about 1900 rpm at 75 mph.
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Old 10-17-2018, 11:01 PM
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Originally Posted by dan95gst View Post
yea NA 6.0 with a t56 and 2.73 gears 1st would go to like 78mph.
With a 2.66 low, that would only be 6800 rpm...
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Old 10-18-2018, 06:10 AM
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Originally Posted by CattleAc View Post
I run the 2006 GTO T56 (TUET-2066)...it has the 2.97 low gear ratio. This makes for quite spirited low gear blasts with the 3.73's. I don't think I'd go any lower than 4.10's unless your going to spend a lot of time at the strip. (The Camaro/ Firebird T56 has a 2.66 low gear)

With a 28" tire, I'm running about 1900 rpm at 75 mph.
Yeah, 4.11 is the lowest i'd go. This car will hit the strip a few times just to see what it will run, but most likely will only do just that. Just gonna be a cruiser. even so, a 28" tire and a .5 6th gear on 4.11's keeps highway RPM in check. 4.11's will put me in the same ballbark as you with the GTO's .56 6th gear and 3.73's (77 MPH at 1900 RPM for the Fbody T56 and 4.11's)

Originally Posted by CattleAc View Post
With a 2.66 low, that would only be 6800 rpm...
Don't plan on spinning it any faster than that, the way i am building the 6.0, power will be for sure on the down slope at 6800 RPM.
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Old 10-18-2018, 10:18 AM
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Honestly, if I was starting with a T56, I would definitely go with the 4.11's. I had installed the 3.73's when I originally had the 4l60e..

I would even consider the 4.30's if it was me....

That BIG beautiful bitch will feel nasty either way.

Good luck on the build, keep posting.
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Old 10-18-2018, 04:43 PM
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Hoping to get the engine home to my house to work on it at my leisure this weekend. Nice having a large garage to work out of, just sucks it is 30 minutes from my house. So home it comes. Placed the order for the Cam/lifters/springs/pushrods just a few minutes ago from Cam Motion. gonna wait to order gaskets till I get it all pulled apart to see just how far i need to take it, see if it needs cam bearings or rods/mains instead of just doing a top end kit. Cam Motion suggested a custom cam. 220/228 .595 lift 109+2

Harness will come off to be taken to a buddy and have him cut it down for me. Doing a little work trade for it. Engine will be built over the winter. Just have to fully sort out if i am going auto or T56.
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Old 10-18-2018, 08:27 PM
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Any kinda wagon with a manual is badass especially a big *** boat like that one
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Old 10-22-2018, 09:09 PM
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Cam shows some wear, but otherwise the engine is seeming to be pretty clean. Have not pulled the heads yet, as i have not pulled the balancer due to lack of proper tools at this time and figured a bit of compression would assist with that. Cam is due to ship thursday, Hopefully ordering the rest of the gaskets by the end of the week as well.

T56 is still up in the air. Little bro is up in the air as to what he wants to build, which leave my build up in the air as well. His choice is between LS1/T56 swap a Volvo 240 wagon or build up his 2012 PPV caprice.
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Old 10-22-2018, 09:44 PM
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Default Wagon

Hi Underpowered
What a cool project!! I also am wanting to do a similar swap. I have a 94 caprice wagon.
Would like to do a LS3 or 6.2L but they still get gold for those around here. We will see.
Anyway I am looking forward to your project!!

My 94 Caprice.
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Old 10-23-2018, 05:39 AM
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Originally Posted by chevydarrell View Post
Hi Underpowered
What a cool project!! I also am wanting to do a similar swap. I have a 94 caprice wagon.
Would like to do a LS3 or 6.2L but they still get gold for those around here. We will see.
Anyway I am looking forward to your project!!

My 94 Caprice.

Just gotta keep an eye out for a deal. I wanted a 6.0 but assumed i would have to settle for a 5.3 due to my budget. But after a bit of looking, bought the 6.0 from a friend for $1200, but sold the Trans and T-case that came with it for $800. Ended up with only $500 in the complete 6.0 with full harness and ECU.

Dropping of the harness to be cut down tonight and picking up a a few tools to help with disassembly as well. Hopefully it will be down to the short block by the weekend.
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