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Old 10-07-2017, 04:13 PM   #1
Racie
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Just got a 85 GMC SWB are the LS swaps that hard?

Just wondering...if I can do a traditional setup BBC or SMC pretty much in a wknd taking my time with my uncle or a couple of friends. (installed and up and running.) I mean if you have the motor mounts and cross-member how much difference is it? I mean I understand getting your wire harness done which I would get somebody who knows what they are doing. Other than cleaning up the install to look good how hard is it? These guys in Dallas are charging $7500-$15000 lmao...I'm like seriously guys it's a motor and tranny and maybe a cam swap and tune. I have a very clean GMC one owner and actually have my ZZ502 sitting on a pallet assembled and ready to go that I removed from my 68' because I went 572 seriously thinking about saying screw LS and drop it in with an overdrive tranny and add EFI to it. WHat are you guys thoughts? Oh and those prices are with my motor and tranny already removed 😂
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Old 10-07-2017, 04:59 PM   #2
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Re: Just got a 85 GMC SWB are the LS swaps that hard?

VERY nice truck....those prices are unreal....I did my own ls swap and have to say I was impressed with how simple it was...but like with anything there's going to be hiccups along the way...I didn't have the knowledge of a site like this to help, me aling so most of my info was word of mouth...I wouldn't try to do it in a weekend..don't rush it..read read read...I worked on mine in my spare time and was done in 3-4 weeks...some things you'll have to wait on like driveshaft and such
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Old 10-07-2017, 06:44 PM   #3
Racie
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Re: Just got a 85 GMC SWB are the LS swaps that hard?

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VERY nice truck....those prices are unreal....I did my own ls swap and have to say I was impressed with how simple it was...but like with anything there's going to be hiccups along the way...I didn't have the knowledge of a site like this to help, me aling so most of my info was word of mouth...I wouldn't try to do it in a weekend..don't rush it..read read read...I worked on mine in my spare time and was done in 3-4 weeks...some things you'll have to wait on like driveshaft and such
Thanks for the kind words on the truck. She is clean as the board of health I actually found her from an original owner and GM factory worker about to be retired. So it was all original and any replacement part was original NOS.
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Old 10-07-2017, 07:09 PM   #4
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Re: Just got a 85 GMC SWB are the LS swaps that hard?

Well I will not comment on the price ranges you stated-but I will say theres a huge difference between trucks with an obvious LS swap vs trucks with one that is so clean it appears factory-nobody seems to appreciate a really well done LS conversion. Now, if the install looks shabby AND you paid those install prices, then yes I'd say they are crazy. But keep in mind shops have to pay for their employees and I dont think you'd want some knuckle dragger working on your clean truck half assing everything right? Its always going to be probably half as much or better doing it all yourself-but thats how it is with everything. The days of a $500 motor/trans swap are long gone lol (sad to say)
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Old 10-07-2017, 07:21 PM   #5
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Re: Just got a 85 GMC SWB are the LS swaps that hard?

If you know anything about LS motors, the swap is very easy. Biggest headache is dealing with fuel supply
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Old 10-07-2017, 07:28 PM   #6
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Re: Just got a 85 GMC SWB are the LS swaps that hard?

fuel delivery is no issue either. ...all you need is a walbro 255 and a vett filter/reg....easy peasy..
from a mpg and power standpoint its hard not to like it...all grins every time I stand on mine
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Old 10-07-2017, 07:40 PM   #7
Racie
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Re: Just got a 85 GMC SWB are the LS swaps that hard?

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Well I will not comment on the price ranges you stated-but I will say theres a huge difference between trucks with an obvious LS swap vs trucks with one that is so clean it appears factory-nobody seems to appreciate a really well done LS conversion. Now, if the install looks shabby AND you paid those install prices, then yes I'd say they are crazy. But keep in mind shops have to pay for their employees and I dont think you'd want some knuckle dragger working on your clean truck half assing everything right? Its always going to be probably half as much or better doing it all yourself-but thats how it is with everything. The days of a $500 motor/trans swap are long gone lol (sad to say)
That's a fair comment I'd say...
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Old 10-07-2017, 07:52 PM   #8
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Re: Just got a 85 GMC SWB are the LS swaps that hard?

That thing is a cream puff, keep it the correct vintage.
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Old 10-07-2017, 08:32 PM   #9
Racie
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Re: Just got a 85 GMC SWB are the LS swaps that hard?

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That thing is a cream puff, keep it the correct vintage.
Man that's asking a lot I've never kept anything I've had untouched. I just promised my self on this one I would drive it and enjoy it. I went to far with my 68 C10 and I know it will only be used for shows, and coffee/donut runs with my girls. I'm gonna daily drive this one.
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Old 10-09-2017, 03:18 PM   #10
1957 Chief
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Re: Just got a 85 GMC SWB are the LS swaps that hard?

LS swaps are cake...with icing on em. Like was mentioned before me, you will encounter hiccups, and you will wish you had done something different after you have finished the install. Word of caution tho...If you plan on dropping that truck around a 4/6 drop, DO NOT use the truck LS pan.

Hang out in the LS forum and you will learn a lot, plus there is a FAQ section.

And of course all of us, if asked, will be glad to call and talk to you or send you more detailed pics if you have problems.

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Old 10-10-2017, 12:07 AM   #11
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Re: Just got a 85 GMC SWB are the LS swaps that hard?

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LS swaps are cake...with icing on em. Like was mentioned before me, you will encounter hiccups, and you will wish you had done something different after you have finished the install. Word of caution tho...If you plan on dropping that truck around a 4/6 drop, DO NOT use the truck LS pan.

Hang out in the LS forum and you will learn a lot, plus there is a FAQ section.

And of course all of us, if asked, will be glad to call and talk to you or send you more detailed pics if you have problems.

Bubba
Iím running the LS truck pan on mine
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Old 10-10-2017, 10:02 AM   #12
1957 Chief
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Re: Just got a 85 GMC SWB are the LS swaps that hard?

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Iím running the LS truck pan on mine
Nice truck BTW.

I ran the pan too, it was real low. That was a public service announcement. If he doesn't want to worry about knocking off the pan, then id switch.

Bubba
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Old 10-10-2017, 10:58 AM   #13
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Re: Just got a 85 GMC SWB are the LS swaps that hard?

Quote:
Originally Posted by gmachinz View Post
Well I will not comment on the price ranges you stated-but I will say theres a huge difference between trucks with an obvious LS swap vs trucks with one that is so clean it appears factory-nobody seems to appreciate a really well done LS conversion. Now, if the install looks shabby AND you paid those install prices, then yes I'd say they are crazy. But keep in mind shops have to pay for their employees and I dont think you'd want some knuckle dragger working on your clean truck half assing everything right? Its always going to be probably half as much or better doing it all yourself-but thats how it is with everything. The days of a $500 motor/trans swap are long gone lol (sad to say)
/\...Well said. My 1961 Apache was my first swap, most of it was done at a close friends shop. Just a rough guess but I'd bet after you secure an engine and tranny and fixed or depinned harness you may be looking at around 1500-2800 in parts and tuning at a minimum and if your really meticulous you could probably make it look ok but if your going to do AC flush the firewall, hide all the wiring, do nice looking billet pieces, and really go for esthetics then your looking at quite a bit more!
And those guys are right.... if its going to be low, change the pan!
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Old 10-10-2017, 10:59 AM   #14
Racie
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Re: Just got a 85 GMC SWB are the LS swaps that hard?

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Originally Posted by 1957 Chief View Post
LS swaps are cake...with icing on em. Like was mentioned before me, you will encounter hiccups, and you will wish you had done something different after you have finished the install. Word of caution tho...If you plan on dropping that truck around a 4/6 drop, DO NOT use the truck LS pan.

Hang out in the LS forum and you will learn a lot, plus there is a FAQ section.

And of course all of us, if asked, will be glad to call and talk to you or send you more detailed pics if you have problems.

Bubba
Bubba Iím definitely doing a drop can you tell me what pan you used? Oh and thanks for the advice I think Iím gonna keep the 502 for later use....
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Old 10-10-2017, 03:07 PM   #15
1957 Chief
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Re: Just got a 85 GMC SWB are the LS swaps that hard?

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Bubba Iím definitely doing a drop can you tell me what pan you used? Oh and thanks for the advice I think Iím gonna keep the 502 for later use....
Well I started off with the truck pan, and that hung down about an inch below the crossmember. Now that I am putting in the 6.2, I chose the CTS-V pan. I was thinking of the Corvette C-6 pan, or the F-body pan...but the C-6 pan didn't have enough capacity for what I wanted (5 quarts) and the F-body pan most likely would have needed some modifications around the front crossmember.

You can rack your brain trying to decide which way to go...esp with all the different motor mounts and engine placement. Lots of threads out there on what pan people have used.

I have the stock motor pads on the truck frame and I made my own mounts using the template on the LS faq thread.

Old suspension did have a 5/7 drop, couple that with a 26 inch tall tire and it made it close. I raised the truck 1/2 inch with a different spindle, but it was still too close for me.

Holler back if you have any questions.

Bubba
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Old 10-10-2017, 03:36 PM   #16
UKNOWME
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Re: Just got a 85 GMC SWB are the LS swaps that hard?

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Nice truck BTW.

I ran the pan too, it was real low. That was a public service announcement. If he doesn't want to worry about knocking off the pan, then id switch.

Bubba
I think it all depends on the mounts that are used. I shouldíve specified I used Tejas Steelworks mounts that are specifically designed to run the truck pan.
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Old 10-15-2017, 07:17 AM   #17
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Re: Just got a 85 GMC SWB are the LS swaps that hard?

My buddie does LS swap for a living. On a truck like this he would charge 600 dollars for labor alone plus your parts/motor. My advice bring all you want.... your engine, motor mounts etc. If interested ill be glad to assist you. I live in Mississippi but you'll steal come out not spending 5000 dollars. That's outrageous. Anyway his number is 6625888837. Wade Shepard is his name.
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