MonteCarloSS.com
MonteCarloSS.com

CELEBRATING 20 YEARS!

Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
Page 3 of 3 1 2 3
#1064004 - 11/03/19 08:54 PM Re: Breathials' '87 MCSS Build- Cheap Street Driver [Re: Breathial]  
Joined: Jun 2018
Posts: 38
Breathial Offline
Member
Breathial  Offline
Member

Joined: Jun 2018
Posts: 38
Chester Springs, PA
A tricky aspect was the TV cable for the 200r4 transmission. They're very picky about location to get proper shifting, as it turns out.

I'd bought a retaining nut and wrench for my Makita 90-degree 4" grinder, as my old nut was missing. The tip of the wrench happened to be about the right thickness and hole I needed, so I snipped off the end of it, shaped it to fit the stocker throttle-body, and just had to make sure it got welded in the exactly correct location.

[Linked Image]

Then, moving on to finish the cold-air induction, I bought another 90-degree elbow off EBay, trimmed up the aluminum tube I had, and came up with the following:

[Linked Image]

I used the stock throttle-cable bracket, bolted directly to the modified intake at approximately the right angle. The throttle cable and TV cable were "replacement" items offered on Amazon for ~$40 each. The catch was to measure the actual length, cross-reference cable lengths to OEM applications, and then use Amazon prime. Easy-peasy. The $200+ "kits" to adapt the TV cable to the throttle-body, custom throttle-cables and like, IMHO, are nothing short of robbery. It ticked me off, looking at the "offerings."

Moving on to accessories, they're ALL truck accessories, with no exceptions. The truck power steering pump was a little tight, but worked without having to buy any extra "stuff"... it just bolted up. Same for the alternator, water pump, etc. Sorry, I forgot to take a pic of what hose I used for the uppper... basically I went into the back of the local Pep-Boys (who I spend WAY too much money at), and dug around until I found something to work.

After all this, I filled the cooling system. If you don't know, there's a special process for this compared to "old-school," so be sure to look it up.

#1064005 - 11/03/19 09:08 PM Re: Breathials' '87 MCSS Build- Cheap Street Driver [Re: Breathial]  
Joined: Jun 2018
Posts: 38
Breathial Offline
Member
Breathial  Offline
Member

Joined: Jun 2018
Posts: 38
Chester Springs, PA
At this point, the engine pics basically end. But it's NOT the finish to the story, not by a LONG shot....

For starters, the work to modify the harness to properly fit the car, took me... I'd say 40-50 hours of time. I wanted it CLEAN, so I pulled all the un-necessary wiring. Next, you have to route the wires exactly where they'll be in the final iteration, and either shorten or lengthen them so they're routed properly, without kinks or breaks. Next, you'll have to do continuity checks of every wire up through the sensor plug. Finally, there WILL be wires that are colored wrong, or sensor plugs that are broken or otherwise unusable. It takes a lot of time to make the install clean.

If I was bucks-up, I would have taken the easy way out, and bought a "pre-built" harness. And that would have been a mistake.

WHY?

First of all, for the harness to properly fit wherever you want it, there's no WAY you can route the wires to be the exact length required. And with wire bundles, the lengths have to accommodate bends for proper routing, again making a good fit unlikely.

Next, if you build the harness yourself, you'll be educated on it for troubleshooting any time in the future.

So, while I spent many an evening grumbling about how a big-block Chevy would have been easier, I was stuck with what I had. No turning back now...

#1064006 - 11/03/19 09:18 PM Re: Breathials' '87 MCSS Build- Cheap Street Driver [Re: Breathial]  
Joined: Jun 2018
Posts: 38
Breathial Offline
Member
Breathial  Offline
Member

Joined: Jun 2018
Posts: 38
Chester Springs, PA
When I got to where I thought I was ready to turn the key for the first time... I was pretty nervous. NOTHING was stock on this, I'd touched every wire in the harness, was running a "mail-order" tune... A LOT of things could go wrong.

A handly little device was given to me, from a guy I gave my old 6.0 pistons and rods (they were disgustingly filthy, but otherwise serviceable). He gave me an ELM327 bluetooth adapter... They can be bought for ~$10 on Amazon, and there's an app at the Google Play store called "Torque Lite," available for FREE. A quickie intro is here:

[video:youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GMYZNal9Wpk[/video]

I download the app, and now I can read nearly all my sensors. I'm monitoring the computer through the Torque app, as I turn the key for the first time... and it STARTS.

And then it dies. Won't stay running.

Using the Torque app, I go through the sensors, find I wired the throttle position sensor backwards... I correct the flaw, and now it runs without issue.

So with a $10 adapter (which was given), plus a free app, I was able to diagnose a problem that could have taken me days or WEEKS to find... Not a bad first day of the car being alive... wink

#1064008 - 11/03/19 09:41 PM Re: Breathials' '87 MCSS Build- Cheap Street Driver [Re: Breathial]  
Joined: Jun 2018
Posts: 38
Breathial Offline
Member
Breathial  Offline
Member

Joined: Jun 2018
Posts: 38
Chester Springs, PA
So now I try running the engine, to at least get it warm, and verify operation of the fans, 165F T-stat, check to make sure everything holds when the engine is warmed up, and so on.

I discover that the fans will NOT come on, no matter what. I check the wiring three separate times, and the conclusion is that there's no signal from the PCM to trigger the fans. The tuner who programmed the PCM said, in effect, "duh, it's from a truck, you didn't say you wanted fans..." I'm like, WTF? I'd spent $150 for him to do the tune, and now I blow another $80 for him to alter the programming to start the fans. Another annoyance, the factory tach doesn't read the engine RPMs, so it's basically dead.

Two weeks go by, and now I have the PCM again.... and the fans STILL won't start... and the tach is still dead.

At this point, I discover that the 2003-2007 PCMs don't interchange with the 1999-2002 units. And the 2003+ PCMs use very different protocols, using a 1 mB processor vs. the 512kB processor in the older units. Newer ones (with a few exceptions) are drive-by-wire, not drive-by-cable as my car is... and there's no hardware inside to drive the idle-air controller... so basically, at this point, I'm hosed, with regard to the PCM. It's just NOT compatible for my configuration, and my "tuner" wasn't sharp enough to know it. pissed

After burning somewhere are $230 for a "tuner," I'm right back at zero. I'm NOT gonna' pay someone else to do this again; I could screw it up that bad for FREE, right?

There HAD to be another way to do this, without paying EFILive or HPTuners ~$300 (plus vehicle "credits") to get a functional PCM that would run my car...

Enter www.tunerpro.net.

It turns out there've been a group of guys working on building open-source software, to allow a person to do exactly that, with GM computers. The software is free to download, the required adapter is $50-60, and you now have the ability to program your own PCM without having to go to some "tuner" who may know nothing... LOTS of information available, both on blogs, videos, etc., on how to use the gear, what to do, etc.

Bottom line: for $200, I have TWO PCMs to play with, and all the gear to program them as I see fit.

I've now got my car running very smooth, still have some work to do on the idle air controller (which I suspect has either a loose connection or I simply wired incorrectly- the original IAC plug was destroyed, I had to use a spare). Other than that, it flat-out hauls xxxx . I've suddenly found the 18" wheels and tires to be a bit inadequate when I stomp on the gas pedal. And the trans is clearly not configured to handle an engine that can REALLY pull past 6000, like the fresh 6.2 can... so I'm a little worried about putting it on a dyno, as the trans may not survive...

So I'm happy to just cruise in it for now. I'm still working on getting good data logging, but at least I'm getting a handle one what's happening with my engine, instead of relying on some knucklehead in a different state to get useful information...

I haven't tallied up the expenses for all of this.... but my guess is around $5k, all-in, including the programming gear... I'll try to figure it out later, and post it. But for now...? Hope this gives everyone something useful.

#1064016 - 11/04/19 01:39 AM Re: Breathials' '87 MCSS Build- Cheap Street Driver [Re: Breathial]  
Joined: Jan 2000
Posts: 4,498
mmc427ss Offline
15+ Year
mmc427ss  Offline
15+ Year
Member

Joined: Jan 2000
Posts: 4,498
Pottstown, Pa
You know it's only been a little over a year since you started this project, turned a nice stocker into something special. I've followed the build, the setbacks and got to hand it to you, you are persistent.

One of these days we need to meet at WAWA for coffee.
Bob

#1064017 - 11/04/19 01:48 AM Re: Breathials' '87 MCSS Build- Cheap Street Driver [Re: mmc427ss]  
Joined: Jun 2018
Posts: 38
Breathial Offline
Member
Breathial  Offline
Member

Joined: Jun 2018
Posts: 38
Chester Springs, PA
Originally Posted by mmc427ss
You know it's only been a little over a year since you started this project, turned a nice stocker into something special. I've followed the build, the setbacks and got to hand it to you, you are persistent.

One of these days we need to meet at WAWA for coffee.
Bob


It would be a pleasure. smile

Still working on idle air... determined wiring is correct, no vacuum leaks... so it's got to be something in software configuration... a parameter, something DUMB that I'm missing... LOL

It never ends.

Send me a PM when you're of a mood to have some java. wink

#1064025 - 11/05/19 01:04 AM Re: Breathials' '87 MCSS Build- Cheap Street Driver [Re: Breathial]  
Joined: Jun 2018
Posts: 38
Breathial Offline
Member
Breathial  Offline
Member

Joined: Jun 2018
Posts: 38
Chester Springs, PA

So here's the cost breakdown of this build. Parts prices were shopped aggressively online via Ebay, Amazon, Rockauto.com, etc., with the goal of getting reasonably good quality items for the very best price possible. As always, YMMV.

core engine with fresh heads $800.00
LS-7 Roller lifters plus 4 guides (EBay) $108.99
Blue GM Beehive LS springs (EBay) $65.00
Another short-block 6.0 LS $500.00
Valve Stem-seals (beehive style) $18.99
Valve locks $9.52
Machine shop- disassemble, hot-tank, polish crank, check-hone cylinders $380.00
LS3 pistons $120.00
2nd Intake with computer and full harness $100.00
Enginetech bearings (buy) $48.34
Moly piston rings (Enginetech) $86.99
gasket set ( Enginetech) $221.33
Timing Chain set (Enginetech) $54.86
Chinesium exhaust manifolds $175.90
Computer reprogram (Ebay seller AMSRACING) $70.00
Rocker Trunion Kit $90.00
GM LS Push Rods (Set of 16) $34.99
Harmonic Damper bolt (OEM style replacement $8.07
Replacement Knock Sensors (2) $19.34
LS Cylinder head alignment dowels $9.99
Oil flow restrictor $13.99
Truck LS intake manifold bolt kit $16.99
LS Engine Swap M16 1.5 Adapter to 1/8 NPT $9.99
1/8" NPT Steam Port Adapter to Top Radiator Hose LS Swap $14.99
EDGE INDUSTRIAL 1/4" Hose ID to 1/8" Male NPT MNPT 90 Degree Elbow $8.90
MSD 3301 Spark Plug Wire Boot & Terminal (2) $10.91
MSD 3304 Spark Plug Wire Boot & Terminal, (2) $14.19
Waterproof Relay Fuse Block w/7 Relays, 10 Fuses $32.99
OBD2 Dash Port/Wire Pigtail Connector Plug In $11.99
4" Performance Cold Air Intake Kit With Filter $62.98
LS Water Pump & Thermostat Bolt Kit $10.99
Teckpak USA GM 200-4R & 700-R4 Detent Cable 1978-1992 $18.99
Air Flow Sensor Meter MAF 25318411 $29.66
TRUPARTS Oxygen Sensor O2 SG277 (2) $32.59
Motorad 379-160 Thermostat $22.57
IACV IAC Idle Air Control Valve 17113598 $19.99
ACDelco 213-912 GM TPS $32.51
200R4 Chrome Flexible Stainless Transmission Dipstick $51.94
4" Inch 102mm 90 Degree Elbow Silicone Hose $12.24
75-81 CAMARO FACTORY UPPER RAD SUPPORT (Used, Ebay) $45.00
1998-1999 CAMARO LS1 ACCELERATOR CABLE W/O TRACTION CONTROL GM 12565559 $30.68
Dorman Help 41040 Control Cable Retainer $11.01
Edelbrock 8018 1968-Up GM TH350 Transmission Kickdown Stud $6.95
LS1 PCM ECM ECU Mounting Bracket 15995679 $15.00
LS1 Swap Fuel Filter Regulator Fuel Pump & Fitting Kit MSD $199.99
LS1 Conversion 1" Set Back Motor Mount Plates $36.00
Serpentine belt, tensioner and idler kit (Pep Boys) $65.00
Radiator hoses (approximate cost) $40.00
Oil, filter, spark plugs, other misc. crap $80.00

total $3,881.34

There were several other costs not listed- fresh water pump, a serpentine tensioner/pulley assembly, another radiator when my trans cooler line threads came out, and so on... Of coure, there were also a few minor pieces-parts that I didn't use for whatever reason, and $270 worth of exhaust manifolds I can't friggin' get RID of. So an honest number would be... right at $4000 for a fresh engine, with all the tools to tune it myself, and dial it in as my knowledge grows.

Now, the problem is that there are a few special tools to make this work, that you simply can't do the job without....

engine stand (Advance Auto) 84.99
books (Amazon, free shipping) 39.74
Coil spring compresser 19.99
Piston ring compressor (special 6.2 item) 70.00
Engine Hoist (HF, Craigslist) 100.00
Torque-angle wrench (2, since 1st broke) 25.00

Tools, bondo, paint for intake manifold 100.00
OTC 4681 Power Steering Pump/Alternator Remover/Installer Tool 37.26
12V 2A Power Supply Wall Plug Adapter 7.99
OBDLink MX 69.99
ECM pigtails 54.98
2 0411 PCMs 169.42
Cost of Tools 779.36

You can clearly save on some, borrow and beg on others, or (as I did) have to buy them outright. Again, YMMV.

All-in, from soup to nuts... about $5K, no BS.

Last edited by Breathial; 11/23/19 01:21 AM.
#1064337 - 12/02/19 02:57 PM Re: Breathials' '87 MCSS Build- Cheap Street Driver [Re: Breathial]  
Joined: Dec 1999
Posts: 12,231
PB86SS/87LS Offline
Administrator
20+ Year
PB86SS/87LS  Offline
Administrator
20+ Year

Member

Joined: Dec 1999
Posts: 12,231
New Berlin, WI
Just catching up on this, nice when these builds are updated/documented like this, helps others out. Nice job following through and sticking with it, seems like you did it all in pretty good time considering the normal "life" things that are priority, little things like work, family, etc. laugh . Looks good and appears to run really good too, beer .


-86'SS 383 CCC QJet- BRF 2004r-8.5" 3.42 -313/344@RW - 13.35 @103
-87'LS 350 MAF/SD TPI- CRF 2004r-7.5" 3.42 -248/340@RW - 14.55 @ 96
-81'Grand LeMans Safari Wagon 3.8 2bbl/200C/2.73
-07'TBSS Stockish daily driver
[Linked Image]
Page 3 of 3 1 2 3

Random Images
500/thumbs/iphone_217.JPG
by Joe b.
500/thumbs/sig2.jpg
by 1984Monte
500/thumbs/22_1.jpg
by bigal
1026/thumbs/P5150190.jpg
by 1KOOL86
500/thumbs/DCFC0011.JPG
by madmax74
Help MonteCarloSS.com


Recent Contributors
dns87ss
Authorized Vendors
Tell them you saw it
on MonteCarloSS.com!


CustomMonteSSParts.com
Dixie Monte Carlo Depot
GSI Interiors
HRpartsNstuff
Mikes Montes
Savitske Classic & Custom
Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.6.0