Jump to content
HybridZ
Guest speedmon

Will a Z with an LS Engine turn?

Recommended Posts

Guest speedmon

OK,

 

I have the seen the posts with the LS1 engines in the Z and it looks like a good fit. Having a Z06, I know the power and reliability of those engines and I'm thinking about doing a conversion and I have 1 major concern...TURNS.

 

My car is a track club racer so it has to turn! And I've just tuned the suspension where its the way I like it......just a little loose.

 

Currently the car is about 2100 lbs and I like that weight. From my calculation an LS1 with a T56 is going to add at least 200 lbs not counting structural stuff.

 

So my question is, does anybody out there regulary "road track" their LS Z car and what adjustments had to made to keep the car from understeering off the track?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here's something to chew on. The traditional sbc weighs about 40# heavier than the Datsun L6 Motor, IF the SBC has aluminum heads, intake and water pump. An LS1 motor weighs 90, that is N-I-N-T-Y pounds less than the traditional SBC. The LS1 sits pretty low in the engine bay and it sits further back since it doesn't have a distributor to contend with sitting against the firewall. :shock: I don't know where you're getting the 200# figure for your added weight. You'll pick up about 20# on the flywheel/ clutch assembly, and you'll pick up about 50# from the T56 tranny. But you're starting out with a motor that is about 50# lighter than the L6. :shock:

 

Simply put, a well sorted install of an LS1 BONE stock will get you somewhere in the area of 300-320HP with no mods or tuning. That's WHEEL HP, And torque will be higher, 330-360 range. :shock:

 

Personally, there's only two other motors I'd swap into a Zcar right now, and they are WAY down the list below the LSX based Chevy motor.

 

And for the record, I'm concerned ONLY with road race/ track day applications, so turning, stopping and going fast around corners are priority#1 with me. I can't help but think you'd be far ahead of the game with an LS1 tucked into the engine bay, based on the info above. :2thumbs:

 

Mark Icard (Mark on this board) was running an LT1 in his Yellow 240Z. He is now building a full track car and is installing an LS1/T56 combo in it. He should have it on the track by late spring. I'm sure a full report will follow.

Mike :cool:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I had 2 track days with my 240Z before I did the LS1 swap and 2 track days after the swap.

 

My car is set up for street and track. I have coilovers on all 4 corners with eibach springs, tokiko 5 way adj inserts, camber plates, ST sway bars and strut tower bars front and rear. I ran the same tires for all 4 track days.

 

 

When I did the LS1 swap, I added subframe connectors from front to rear. No other changes were made.

 

I really didn't notice much of a change in the way the car handles before and after. The things I did notice were that before I used to set the tokikos on 4 in the front and 3 in the rear and now I set them on 3 in the front and 4 in the rear. No extra understeer is noticed an now I have the power to add additional throttle steer that i didn't have before.

 

As for weight, I never weighed it before but it now weighs 2540 pounds in full street trim with full interior, soundproofing, stereo, full tank of gas.

 

Mine puts down 317/365 to the wheels and is a blast to drive. I am so glad i didn't go with the ZZ4 crate motor I was going to buy.

 

LS power is the best.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest speedmon

As far as the weight calcs go, I got them from this site from the thread entitled "engine weights table".

 

I think it stated that the L28 and 5 speed was 523lbs and

the LS1 motor was 503 lbs and the T56 was 140lbs. I was adding some slop yes, I guess technically it's only 120 lbs......which is less than the weight of most passengers.....which is why its an attactive option. But I could see the differential exceeding 300 with cross members and structural stuff.

 

What other parts do I need, does someone have a list?

Where did you mount the PCM? and the OBD2 port?

Are you running the 02 sensors so the PCM can learn and make A/F adjustments?

 

When this engine blows there is definitely an LS in this cars future.

I have a pretty good salvage connection, but should I budget another $3K-$4K in conversion parts?

 

And does anyone in SoCal have a LS converted Z I can take a look at?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Based on my own research, there is a ton of support for this swap. You'd need to get the JTR headers and the John's cars mounts, along with a complete LS1/2/6 and wiring harness/ ecu. Mount the ECU in the footwell sidewall like the stock ECU was un the 75-78 Z or in the passenger side passenger area against the firewall. You'd need a new driveshaft, and you'd need the MASS and plumbing for an air filter setup, but this is cake.

 

I bet I could do an LS1 Swap into a Zcar in two weekends, from start to sending it to the exhaust shop for pipes.

 

As to that weight table info, I have no idea how they came up with the weights, but that info is flawed a bit. The LS1 Shortblock assembly is absolutely 85-ish pounds lighter than a fourbolt main shortblock. Beyond that, there is certainly a weight gain on the tranny parts, but that isn't a bad thing, since that weight is carried more towards the center and lower in the car. Not to mention the 15 or so nissan transmissions I killed throughout the 80s and 90s. The newer Tremec TKO 5 speeds and B/W T56s are MUCH more durable than anything Nissan offered to the us buying public.

 

Mike :2thumbs:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I weighed my car on certified scales before and after the conversion. I started with a '77 280Z that was 1,400 lbs on the nose and 1,400 lbs on the tail with 3/4 tank of gasoline. This is a street car with all the equipment right down to the AC system. When I was done, with front and rear strut tower braces, the car weighed 2,830 lbs with all the additional weight on the rear. The LS1 sits low enough and far enough back that it is almost a "midships" mount. Only the water pump and accessories are forward of the front axle. The T56 is the culprit that adds the weight but again it is low and very centrally mounted in the car. If you want to keep the weight down then look at a 4 or 5 spd that is set up for the particular tracks you run. I don't track my car much but in over 20,000 miles of driving the only difference in handling that I have noticed is the ability to throttle oversteer that I didn't used to have.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I bet I could do an LS1 Swap into a Zcar in two weekends' date=' from start to sending it to the exhaust shop for pipes.

 

Mike :2thumbs:[/quote']

 

Does that include upgrading the fuel tank (240Z), replacing the fuel lines (old 240Z), rerouting the brake lines, clutch hydraulics, all instrumentation working, AC and PS accessory removal, recored radiator and reprogramming the ECU to eliminate VATS and the second O2?

 

If you can do it in two weekends, then with basic tools, experience and lacking a shed full of old Z car/chevy parts, would you say a Hybrid virgin should have a reasonable chance of success working weekends over a 2 month period? While I’m at it won’t be an issue the first time through because I know everything will come back out next winter for paint (yeah, I hear you guys laughing…)

 

What is the consensus on John’s car’s kit? I don't like the idea of adding a second cross member, but if John's kit gets the engine in right the first time, then for me that would go a long way to ensuring a successful swap. How much trial and error is involved with engine placement with that kit?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Pop, I'd say yes, you could do it in that amount of time. To answer the other questions about the OTHER changes to brake lines, fuel tank and such, that answer is YEs. I'd enlist Doug Carrow, Pete P. And Jamie T. in the build process, and I've got a lot more tools and parts than the average bear. The true key is to make sure you have ALL parts in house before you start. I'd bet two months of weekends would get it done with ease.

 

As to the Johns cars mounts, I was very impressed with David's car when he brought it down for the last cook out. The mounts look awesome and are truly top shelf parts.

 

Mike

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes, a V8 powerd 240Z can be made to turn but I have yet to see one on a track keep up with a SCCA ITS prepared 200 hp 240Z. That has nothing to do with the potential of a V8 240Z and everything to do with the desired goals of folks doing V8 swaps. It takes a lot of money and time to properly prepare, setup, and tune a dedicated track car and very few people want to build a single purpose car.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Yes, a V8 powerd 240Z can be made to turn but I have yet to see one on a track keep up with a SCCA ITS prepared 200 hp 240Z. That has nothing to do with the potential of a V8 240Z and everything to do with the desired goals of folks doing V8 swaps. It takes a lot of money and time to properly prepare, setup, and tune a dedicated track car and very few people want to build a single purpose car.

 

 

John,

 

I'm doing just that, a dedicated ls-1 powered track car. You are right about the time and money part. Also right about the V-8 Z car and an IT car. I could not match lap times at CMP in my street driven lt-1 240Z that the IT Z cars were running there. I hope to be able to say differently this year.

 

Ever come to the east coast? I would love to have you to set up this car but unfortunatly I can't get out there. I have saved most of your suggestions on suspension set up. Time will tell if IT Z cars still best any time I can post.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My car was the prototype for the Johns Cars 'kit'. He had the car for 11 months and, from the 30+ trips I made to discuss things with him, I can vouch for the thought and design efforts that went into the kit. The engine and transmission mounts put them where they need to be to line up properly with the rear end of the car plus provide clearance for headers and steering linkage.

The list of other "modifications" that are required is determined by personal preference. If you buy either a cableX converter box or chzasnge the tailshaft on the T56 to a mechanical speedometer output you don't need to change the speedometer. The tach can also be modified and the other gauges can have their senders incorporated into the LS1 installation. If the shell is a 280Z the tank doesn't need to be changed but the fuel lines will need to be rerouted in the engine bay. The pump and pressure regulator can be external models that mount where the stock pump mounts. This keeps the original instruments in place and a significant part of the fuel system.

 

Any work to the suspension or brakes would be things that you would do whether you were running an LS1 or an L28 so they should be considered an issue somewhat separate of an LS1 install.

 

Jphn Radevich (Johns Cars) estimated that an averege wrench could do the mechanical work on the install in about 40 hours. Probably close to the same for electrical - depending on how you approach it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
posted by johnc

Yes, a V8 powerd 240Z can be made to turn but I have yet to see one on a track keep up with a SCCA ITS prepared 200 hp 240Z.

 

The ITS record for CMP is 1:51.842. This link is from 02, but a friend who runs a ITS 240Z says it still stands, the pavement was fresh then.

 

http://www.ccrscca.com/modules.php?name=Content&pa=showpage&pid=39

 

I'm confident Mark's car is faster than that, because 1) The last time we ran together at CMP I couldn't keep up with him; and 2)At the 04 THSCC time trial I turned a 1:47.630, in the same trim as running with Mark.

 

http://www.thscc.com/timetrial/events/results/2004/results_cmp.htm

 

Both our cars are on V700's, full interior, street legal, except the mufflers on mine are iffy.

 

John

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So Basically John took his V8Zcar and bested the ITS time by OVER 4 seconds. That's on a 2.3 mile road course, so four seconds isn't a small matter.

 

This is one such reason that I've changed direction on building my Zcar and am now building it as a dedicated HPDE car. Mark Icard was a true force to be reconned with when we were at VIR last February with THCC. He was clearly one of the fastest in the advanced group and was cutting 2:13-2:15 second laps. A number of us were very impressed watching him do battle with some serious hardware.

 

Mike

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
The ITS record for CMP is 1:51.842. This link is from 02' date=' but a friend who runs a ITS 240Z says it still stands, the pavement was fresh then.

 

http://www.ccrscca.com/modules.php?name=Content&pa=showpage&pid=39

 

I'm confident Mark's car is faster than that, because 1) The last time we ran together at CMP I couldn't keep up with him; and 2)At the 04 THSCC time trial I turned a 1:47.630, in the same trim as running with Mark.

 

http://www.thscc.com/timetrial/events/results/2004/results_cmp.htm

 

Both our cars are on V700's, full interior, street legal, except the mufflers on mine are iffy.

 

John[/quote']

 

John

 

I feel much better. I thought it was 1:41 at CMP. I was banging my head against the wall trying to knock off a few more seconds. Hot lap timer confirms laps in the mid to upper 14X's pretty consistantly on fresh tires.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Mark Icard was a true force to be reconned with when we were at VIR last February with THCC. He was clearly one of the fastest in the advanced group and was cutting 2:13-2:15 second laps. A number of us were very impressed watching him do battle with some serious hardware.

 

Mike

 

 

I'm blushing. :lmao:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Mike et al

 

This is a great thread especially that applies to the eastern tracks. I have raced at VIR and SUMMit with a z. I am now in the process of building a dedicated track car V8 SBC.

 

If anyone has any set up tips could we make a sticky? in the motorsports section or other appropriate section.

 

also as we go to track if we could post times and challenges there i would be great as well.

 

does it warrant its own forum?

 

V8 S30-31 road course?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes, we can actually start another thread and maybe move some of the text from here... However, I'd like to suggest also that we maybe start planning now and schedule a weekend around NEXT YEARs Triangle Zcar Club/ THSCC event at VIR to maybe get John out on a trip east for the HPDE weekend. I'm sure between us, we could get his ticket paid for and get him put up somewhere local to the track for the weekend... That is if John is interested, of course.

 

There are a number of guys on the east coast who are driving their V8 built track Zcars successfully on large road courses. I think it is important to show the potential of these cars. John brings a lot to the table when it comes to the total package, so it would be of huge value to have him come out.

 

Mike

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
maybe get John out on a trip east for the HPDE weekend. I'm sure between us' date=' we could get his ticket paid for and get him put up somewhere local to the track for the weekend... That is if John is interested, of course.

 

Mike[/quote']

 

 

Count me in

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest speedmon

Thanks for the input!

Assuming I am not losing any weight advantage and only gaining a huge HP/TQ advantage (and more upward potential) I would need to define the parts needed for a minimum conversion to get the car mechanically operational.

From this thread and other I've been able to piece together this list. It does not assume getting all the gauges operational, not yet anyway.

If this list exists already I apologize, but please point me to it.

 

Parts from Donor:

 

LS1 Donor: 2000+ Camaro to include:

 

engine, (definitely upgrade the heads and cam while engine is out)

 

T-56 transmission,

 

PCM with harness (or ECU),

 

Air Intake assembly (an easy fab, but need MAF)

 

?Do we use the camaro clutch assembly?

?What else should be scavenged from the donor...maybe the gauges?

 

Parts needed to buy (and I’d rather buy than fabricate):

 

John’s car mounts (where do these come from?)

 

JTR Headers (has anybody tried the stock Z06 manifolds)

 

Engine crossmember?

 

Transmission crossmember?

 

Fuel pump & lines (Do we need a pressure regulator?)

 

Fuel tank (I have a fuel cell, but does the stock tank need to be replaced?)

 

Radiator (anything special?)

 

?What else?

 

 

Parts need fabricate (this is the list that will drive me crazy):

 

Drive shaft (from T56 to rear end of choice)

 

Exhaust system (no biggie)

 

Brakelines (do they need to be re-routed?, someone said that)

 

Sub-frame connectors (can these be bought?)

 

?What else?

 

 

I know the PCM will need to be re-flashed for tuning and turning many sensors off, but that is part of tuning process, after all the mechanicals are in place.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

YOu'd want the clutch assembly as well as the flywheel and the clutch hydraulics, although you won't use them, get them anyway to make sure you get it all. Your best bet is to find a 2002 model Car. They make Crazy power bonestock. We're talking well over 310 at the wheels (little brother made 319/333 to the wheels last weekend on his otherwise stock setup) with factory cast steel manifolds. Go ahead and get the drive shaft with it and use the front yoke from that.

 

You'll also want to grab the gastank if possible. Others here can give you a MUCH more detailed list of parts, but the Johns cars mount kit and the JTR headers would be on my list.

 

Mike :cool:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now


×