LM4 LS swapped 78 Longbed

Discussion in '1976-1983 Build-Up/Project Threads' started by Markus Vandevender, Jan 7, 2020.

  1. Markus Vandevender

    Markus Vandevender Member

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    Ive been wanting to build this truck for a long time now, and I finally had the time and money to do it, so here we go. I started on 9/1/2019, so its been just over 4 months now. Heres the progress ive made so far. Ill be going through step by step of everything ive done and will do to this truck, it might take awhile to get everything posted so stick around.[​IMG] [​IMG]I will post a spreadsheet of all part numbers once I compile everything i have if anyone is interested.[​IMG] [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jan 7, 2020
  2. Markus Vandevender

    Markus Vandevender Member

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    So the motor in question is a 5.3L LM4 Aluminum block LS. I pulled it out of a 2004 GMC envoy at pick pull, payed around $200 for the complete longblock. That night i yanked out the factory 20R and sold it and the 5 speed, and got this motor on the stand. It was grimy and nasty, I had to clean the entire thing, soaked the heads in simple green and water. On inspection the motor was perfect, im unsure of the mileage as it was a digital dash, but it looked great. I ordered headstuds and new headgaskets, and some universal motor mounts from ebay for cheap.[​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  3. Markus Vandevender

    Markus Vandevender Member

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    The motor mounts were fairly straight forward, just simple bushing style, the motor side was already welded, i had to plate the frame side and weld the tabs in myself. I mocked up these mounts with dimensions of an oil pan i had on order from JEGS, its their cheapest steel rear sump they had. I tacked everything in place until I received the pan and was able to modify it to fit. I went a little bit overboard on the weld size, I just really didnt want them to come out or break![​IMG][​IMG]
    [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  4. Markus Vandevender

    Markus Vandevender Member

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    The oil pan was a little complicated, I had to cut the sump off and have a buddy of mine TIG it back on 3.5in forward to get it to fit between the steering linkage and the front crossmember. By doing this i was able to get the motor super low in the chassis. I modified the oil pickup as well to match. Its quite a tight fit as you can see. For this pan to work i also have to run a remote oil filter, which we will get to later.
    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  5. Markus Vandevender

    Markus Vandevender Member

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    The next part of the process was figuring out which transmission i wanted to use. I really had my heart set on a manual, its just more fun in my opinion. I would have really liked to get a T56 but unfortunately it was not in the budget. I ended up going with an NV3500 from a 98 Chevy S10. Using the chevy 4.8 clutch kit, this trans bolts directly up to the 5.3 with no bearing changes. Being from a 98 the shifter is also back on the tailshaft and not on the top of the case, which puts the shifter in almost stock location. I ended up having to cut quite a bit more of the floorpan out than I wanted to, I have a plan to make a new one though. I was able to reuse the factory crossmember by cutting out the center of it, plating in the sides, extending the mount a few inches back and bracing everything in. Turned out a little better than i expected![​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  6. Markus Vandevender

    Markus Vandevender Member

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    Now i really couldnt figure out what fuel system i wanted to run, everyone always runs turbos, cuz well....they work. I went a slightly different path with mine though. I ended up going with the Edelbrock Pro Flo 4 XT kit. If yall havent heard about this, this kit is amazing. It comes with the intake and throttle body, fuel rails, injectors, full wiring harness, wideband o2 sensor, standalone ECU, Bluetooth tablet for tuning and probably some other things im missing right now. But the nice part is from JEGS its only $1500 shipped. For full on-the-fly tuning, no shutting the truck off to load a new tune, its instant. And i mean how can you say no to this badass intake??[​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  7. Markus Vandevender

    Markus Vandevender Member

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    I also dropped a really nasty cam in while i was at it, I had a chat with the guys over at Brian Tooley Racing, even though this is technically a truck motor, because it was going in such a light vehicle, they suggested i run Their stage 2 LS3 cam with these Specs: 225/238 .612"/.585" 113+3. At the same time I installed their dual valve spring kit, titanium retainers and chromoly pushrods. With any luck all of it in combination will add an extra 80-100hp
    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  8. Markus Vandevender

    Markus Vandevender Member

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    I picked a night and had a buddy come over to help me install the clutch, drop the motor in and bolt up the trans. i had to bend out the floor pan a bit more to get the trans to bolt up with the clutch on the motor now. In the next few days I wired everything up, Installed the ECU and the switch panel in the dash. I am running a true keyless push-button, but there are some fancy security measures in place ;)[​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  9. Markus Vandevender

    Markus Vandevender Member

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    Also as an add in, i also found something pretty neat, i ordered a billet gas pedal from jegs, and it just so happens to fit in the factory bracket![​IMG]
     
  10. jetas

    jetas Grand Toyotaholic

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    Damn you got that thing to fit pretty good in there! Good work bro
     
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  11. Markus Vandevender

    Markus Vandevender Member

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    Now i had to figure out how to cool this damn thing. There is little to no room at all in the front, and I really didnt want to shell out the cash for a corvette accessory drive. I begrudgingly cut out the core support and modified it to fit the radiator. The radiator is a Griffin, The part number will be on the spreadsheet i post later.[​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  12. Markus Vandevender

    Markus Vandevender Member

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    Thanks man, its been quite an adventure! haha
     
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  13. Markus Vandevender

    Markus Vandevender Member

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    The headers were a challenge to tackle, being as that the steering box is directly below the brake booster, with as low as I put the motor, going down and back was not an option unless i wanted to make some crazy custom headers. so i got some cheap up and forward turbo headers and some exhaust tubing. i was able to cut off the vbands and weld them back onto the ends of some 90s that i welded onto the headers, only way these were going was down and out now. There are 2 9in bullet mufflers going down.[​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  14. Markus Vandevender

    Markus Vandevender Member

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    Originally when i started dropping this motor in i was hoping to use the factory tank as i know the fuel pump outlet on later toyota pickups is 5/16. However on these trucks its only a 1/4in fuel pump outlet, which is fine if i wanna run out of fuel by 3000rpm. I ended up doing a 25 gal fuel cell mounted behind the rear axle and running a MSD fuel pump and C7 filter/regulator. spent a day making brackets and tabs and getting it situated. (dont mind the nearly ripped off shock, thats getting plated over when i c-notch later this month)[​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  15. Markus Vandevender

    Markus Vandevender Member

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    Ended up finding some awesome seats on facebook marketplace. I think theyre originally JEGS seats but i got the pair for $100.[​IMG]
     
  16. Markus Vandevender

    Markus Vandevender Member

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    I ended up getting really lucky and not having to modify my steering, where my remote oil filter lines come down the AN fittings come REALLY close to my steering linkage when i turn lock to lock. I had to run the lines around the motor and back to the drivers side because if turned them straight towards the front my tie rod ends hit.[​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  17. Markus Vandevender

    Markus Vandevender Member

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    Now onto the current projects, Im working on installing a shortened explorer 8.8 in the rear. Its a 3.73 limited slip, i pulled it from the junkyard and swapped a short side axle into the long side. when i got it home i cut off the long side perch, and cut out 2 7/8 from it. beveled the tube down to a 1/32 flat, used 2 pieces of c channel to square the tube up to itself and welded it up alternating sides after 1in passes. also welded the tubes in at the same time, preheating and post heating. Havent gotten around to cutting off all the rest of the perches yet with christmas rolling around and such. itll be done in the next few days though. Gotta get it all setup so i can see how tall i need to make my c-notch.[​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
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  18. Markus Vandevender

    Markus Vandevender Member

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  19. jetas

    jetas Grand Toyotaholic

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    Sounds really healthy! Whats the plan for braking?
     
  20. KS.ID

    KS.ID Enthusiast

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    Welcome to ToyotaMini's! I'm glad you started this thread, I've seen a couple posts on IG but this is much more in depth.
     
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