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Old 12-23-2013, 02:24 PM   #1
tlorber
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S10 Frame Swap w/ AD and LS motor

I'm just a the beginning stages of this swap and I'm in the process of gathering parts. I wanted to document progress (slow though it may be) so that I can post obstacles that I encounter, and to solicit input. I have found the existing threads to be extremely helpful and I hope to be able to contribute back.

Here is what I am starting with:
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My truck is a '54 GMC 150, which is a 3/4 ton. It is too stiff and large to be practical street vehicle, even after installing a T5 and 4.10 gears. My plan is to make it comfortable enough to drive that my wife will want to use it occasionally, and to get 2 kids into safely (my leash gets much longer as long as I have the kids with me).

The donor is a standard cab long bed, and the motor is a 2005 LM7 similar to the pic, from a Silverado that rolled (73,000 miles with heads that were replaced under warranty in 2012). Tranny is the 4L60e from the same truck, and I have all the harnesses, PCM and throttle controls from the same truck as well.

I have also acquired a rear end from a '76ish Camaro. This measures appx. 61inches from wheel mounting surface to wheel mounting surface, which compares with 62.5 inches for my stock 150, and it has 3.43 gears. The good news is that I was able to swap the stock S10 straight across for the Camaro one.

I will most likely be purchasing cab mounts from AD Engineering. Thanks to the discovery of BlueJeep's thread, I realized that I can use the stock S10 bed, (with some cutting required). Therefore I will not need the bed supports, so the AD parts will be in the $550 range. I want my truck to be usable as a pickup for occasional hauling, so I will probably rhino guard the bottom, and for showing purposes I may cut and finish some veneered plywood w/metal strips that I can just lay on top of the bed to look like the original wood planks.

I am slowly selling the S10 parts I don't need to fund the new parts.

This swap will require me sectioning about 8-10 inches from my bed sides (in front of the rear fender) to fit the new frame. I believe this will look better proportioned and more balanced than my current stock bed. Due to the "embossing" of the bed sides and front on the '54 and 55 1's, raising the bed height relative to the sides is not really an option that I considered viable. Therefore, lowering will be accomplished via 2" drop spindles and 3" lowering blocks in the rear. I don't think I'll need to go lower than that.

Anyhow, thanks for reading. I hope to make some forward progress over the holidays.

Last edited by tlorber; 12-23-2013 at 02:35 PM.
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Old 12-23-2013, 04:43 PM   #2
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Re: S10 Frame Swap w/ AD and LS motor

I'll tag along for the build...Jim
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Old 01-15-2014, 03:58 PM   #3
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Re: S10 Frame Swap w/ AD and LS motor

Finally making a little progress. I have the truck stripped down to the frame, and have been selling parts to fund new ones.

I mocked up the Camaro rear w/3" lowering blocks and I've begun removing bushings from the rear leafs to replace with urethane.
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In the past on some other cars I've had to drill out/burn out the rubber bushings. In this case, once I drilled about 8-9 holes in the rubber I was able to wiggle and pound out the inner sleeve. The rubber came out with it so no flame was required. For the leaf spring bushing I made a couple cuts in the outer sleeve and hammered out the outer sleeve. Once I clean up the bores the urethane will go in. Wish I had more progress to report.
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Old 01-15-2014, 11:16 PM   #4
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Re: S10 Frame Swap w/ AD and LS motor

Looking like a good pile of parts!

I'm glad I could help provide some ideas, looking forward to seeing how you put it together.
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Old 03-04-2014, 12:51 PM   #5
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Re: S10 Frame Swap w/ AD and LS motor

Guys, I'm slowly making progress on preparing the frame. I have replaced control arm bushings and reinstalled the spring on one side. Now I realize that if I am to use the frame side of the stock motor mount, getting the nuts installed from underneath will be difficult (though probably not impossible) due to the spring and lower arm being in the way. I still have the driver's side apart so installing that will not be an issue.

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So, my question for those of you putting an LS motor into an S10 is...should I plan on using this mount, or will I just be welding a new plate onto the frame at a later point?

By the way, the frame now looks better than in the picture. I have most of it painted with POR 15. The degreasing has taken more time than anything else.

Thanks for any advice you can pass on.
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Old 03-04-2014, 06:50 PM   #6
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Re: S10 Frame Swap w/ AD and LS motor

Nice start, I'll be following along since I plan on doing just about the same thing with my truck.
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Old 03-04-2014, 08:45 PM   #7
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Re: S10 Frame Swap w/ AD and LS motor

Quote:
Originally Posted by tlorber View Post
So, my question for those of you putting an LS motor into an S10 is...should I plan on using this mount, or will I just be welding a new plate onto the frame at a later point?
I'd just weld it on where you want it. trying to bolt it in the stock location just cantilevers it off and requires a bunch more material to make it strong in my opinion.

Here's mine:


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Old 03-05-2014, 12:56 PM   #8
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Re: S10 Frame Swap w/ AD and LS motor

Thanks, Blue Jeep. That's the kind of input I was looking for. I may be hitting you up for more pics down the road. Did you cut away at the frame to fit the cylinder in? I couldn't quite tell from the second picture.
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Old 03-05-2014, 08:21 PM   #9
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Re: S10 Frame Swap w/ AD and LS motor

Nope, didn't cut the frame at all, just cleaned off the paint where I needed to weld.
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Old 03-18-2014, 02:03 PM   #10
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Re: S10 Frame Swap w/ AD and LS motor

Limping Forward. I've only been getting about 2-3 hours per week done so progress has been slow, but I degreased and Por 15'd the chassis. Suspension bushings are in and I have to get one spring back in to close up the driver's side control arms. Then it will be on to mocking up the motor and tranny.
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Old 03-18-2014, 02:58 PM   #11
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Re: S10 Frame Swap w/ AD and LS motor

Frame looks very nice.
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Old 03-31-2014, 12:42 PM   #12
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Re: S10 Frame Swap w/ AD and LS motor

Made a bit of progress last week. Got my motor mounts and installed them.

Attachment 1235409

Attachment 1235410

Attachment 1235411

Then I had to drill and cut the frame to get a wrench on the back. Eventually I will burn these mounts in, when everything is finalized.
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So, at least for the time being, the eagle has landed.

Attachment 1235412



I now need to set the motor and tranny at the correct angle and fabricate a tranny crossmember.

Last edited by tlorber; 03-31-2014 at 12:52 PM.
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Old 04-25-2014, 12:58 PM   #13
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Re: S10 Frame Swap w/ AD and LS motor

I finally got my tranny crossmember fabricated and installed.
The welds aren't pretty, but hopefully they'll hold.

Attachment 1246363

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Now on to the cab mounts.
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Old 04-25-2014, 04:13 PM   #14
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Re: S10 Frame Swap w/ AD and LS motor

Really nice progress man, that's going to be a killer truck.
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Old 07-18-2014, 12:38 PM   #15
tlorber
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Re: S10 Frame Swap w/ AD and LS motor

Finally a bit of forward progress to report. This is the new cab mount system that AD Engineering has put together. I bought the prototype from Robert and got it installed. His goal was to make it a complete bolt in, but I will be burning in certain areas in order to reinforce.

He made this so that the cab can be installed for stock height or lowered by about 3". Since I am using drop spindles in front and lowering blocks in rear I am using the "stock" setting.

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Old 09-15-2014, 03:35 PM   #16
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Re: S10 Frame Swap w/ AD and LS motor

Well, progress has been embarrassingly slow. However, I did get the front sheet metal off this weekend. Now that the truck is officially not drivable I will be dismantling the interior of the cab to get it ready to transfer.

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After 60 years of running the truck looked a bit sad.
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Old 09-23-2014, 03:29 PM   #17
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Header Question

I received my headers and put them in for a mockup. They look like they're well built, and they should fit the frame well. However, they do get close to the spark plug wires and the dipstick.

What are your thoughts on this?

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Old 09-28-2014, 07:45 PM   #18
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Re: S10 Frame Swap w/ AD and LS motor

the new ad kit look pretty good. do you have any pics of radiator mount and bed mounts? It almost looks like that kit would allow you to mount cab as high or low as you wanted by drilling new holes.
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Old 09-29-2014, 01:37 PM   #19
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Re: S10 Frame Swap w/ AD and LS motor

I have the radiator mount still in the box. I hope to do the preliminary cab swap in the next couple weeks, and then I can mock it up. He designed the support to mount to the front sway bar holes. He says you need to cut the bottom of the core support, but that it will take an original AD radiator and still clear the steering box.

As far as the bed goes, I am using the corrugated metal bed from the S 10, so the bed support locations will be per the original ones, though I'll probably have to add some at the front most point.

The entire cab mount is indeed adjustable, and new holes can be drilled. However, once I know where everything will sit, I will be welding things in, after which it will no longer be movable.

I will post pictures when I get the work done.
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Old 09-29-2014, 01:51 PM   #20
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Re: S10 Frame Swap w/ AD and LS motor

By the way, within a 1/2 hour of removing the running boards, I had hit my shins on them 3 times. So I engineered, designed and fabricated this hi tech system to avoid future shin collisions.

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If anyone needs plans please let me know
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Old 09-29-2014, 07:03 PM   #21
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Re: S10 Frame Swap w/ AD and LS motor

That's kind of HI-TECH, don't know if I can handle that...Jim
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Old 09-29-2014, 11:06 PM   #22
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Re: S10 Frame Swap w/ AD and LS motor

subscribing, cool truck. yup I make my running board brackets bolt on for that very reason. You asked about the headers being close to the plug wires? I'd say put some heat boots on them. the v8 s10 headers for ex are terrible for clearances, so I run boots on the wires, mainly on pass side.
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Old 10-01-2014, 12:49 PM   #23
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Re: S10 Frame Swap w/ AD and LS motor

Thanks,99. I will look into heat boots.
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Old 10-01-2014, 04:07 PM   #24
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Re: S10 Frame Swap w/ AD and LS motor

cool, hard to tell by pics but is the flange causing problems too? maybe trim them up a bit.
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51' 3100 s-10 frame lowered,bias whitewalls, 355,5speed, patina, done, baggin it now!
http://67-72chevytrucks.com/vboard/s...d.php?t=382481

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52' 3100 Slowly in progress, will be painted two toned, have 235 with a t-5, lowered OG frame

Other projects, 49' farmuse 3100, 53' COE


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Old 10-01-2014, 09:43 PM   #25
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Re: S10 Frame Swap w/ AD and LS motor

Quote:
Originally Posted by oldman3 View Post
That's kind of HI-TECH, don't know if I can handle that...Jim
That is high tech I can understand.... great idea. Really good build and I will be following along. Love an LS in an AD truck!
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