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 Post subject: '80 Camaro - OS65
 Post Posted: May 27th, 2016, 7:41 pm 
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Joined: May 27th, 2016, 8:47 am
Posts: 37
Location: Wisbech(ish)
Righto, projects... change of plan from the twin turbo small block idea as an LQ motor turned up at the swap meet a couple of months back.

I can't leave anything alone, so even though my Camaro had only been on the road for a year I wasn't really happy with how quick it was. Fell a long way short of expectations.

I've built a really strong 4L80E for it ready to put some serious horsepower through the chassis. When I rebuilt the car I did it with a similar thing in mind. Substantial subframe connectors, solid body bushings, extra bracing on the front subframe as well. I also fitted a 12 bolt in the back, with Moroso Brute strength posi and 32 spline steel shafts.

I sill have a lot more to do yet, but I'm stopping short of fitting any sort of roll cage, for now. As it's predominantly a road car.

So this is what it looked like 18 months ago. Was powered by a strong 360 SBC putting out around 425hp.

It had multi-point EFI and wasted spark ignition (crank triggered) with Megasquirt II ECU.

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So in the quest for more horsepower I'm building an LQ (iron block LS) motor for this now with the intention of making around 550=600hp NA. With scope for forced induction or N2O in the future.

I saw this LQ9 at a swap meet for a £300 ($450). It's all brand new but the block had some minor damage on the lower left corner. I also had a spare head that I experimented with before I started on the real thing.

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You can buy an LS swap sump kit, but I wasn't paying $200 plus $100 shipping for the privilege of that... So I modified the oil pan for the LQ motor. The original truck pan is 8" deep, way too much for the Camaro. So I've cut nearly 2" out of it. Trouble is it's lost a bit of capacity as a result, but I extended it...

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Got some 4mm sheet and made an extension for the bottom section, this will regain the capacity lost by cutting down the depth. It gives the pan more or less the same dimensions as the Cadillac CTS-V pan.

I bolted the pan to the block before fully welding it to minimise distortion.

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We're a bit stuck for head options in the UK, and splashing out on some very expensive CNC heads would just about bankrupt me I think! So as I had these stock heads here I thought I would make use of them. Not my first porting job by a long stretch, but it is the first set of LS heads I've done.

5 hours in and I got one head roughed out with the carbide cutter. Just need to finish it off with cartridge rolls and give the exhaust ports a polish.

I've since had them skimmed so I just need to clean up the chambers and unshroud the valves as well.

I had a scrap head here as well, so decided to drill the ports in a few places to find out how thick the walls were as I wanted to remove quite a bit of material, especially around the exhaust ports.

Started off by marking out the inlet ports on the face so they were all the same size.

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And here's a stock inlet port/valve throat, there's a big step where the cast runner meets the seat insert which you might not be able to see in the photos.

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First thing I did was dive in with a big carbide cutter and blend the seat into the throat

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Then in with a smaller ball cutter and worked on the area around the guide. I did think about cutting the guide back, but I can't see any huge benefits from doing so?

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I didn't really touch the rest of the port apart from cleaning up a few casting marks. I just need to run a cartridge roll all the way through the port to finish it off

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Inlet ports all squared up and equally sized

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Next the exhaust ports - these were even worse where the seat meets the cast runner - but the port was a long way behind the seat insert, so all I could really do was clean it up a bit and blend it as best possible.

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The main work on the exhaust side was at the port exit. They seem very small at the manifold, so I marked them out and then cut quite a lot of material out of the ports including on the top and bottom of the runners so as to make the port the same size all the way through.

Here's a side by side comparison
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And all done

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Did the trunion upgrade to the rockers, takes ages but worth it.

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I took drastic measures and turned my long truck crank into a short one... but left the center boss long so I can use a normal (old style) 4L80 converter with a dished flex plate to save me having to then fit an extension.

As I've already got a dished SFI flex plate, and I'll need to drill that for the 11.5" converter bolts as well. Why did Chevy decide to change all of this after the best part of 60 years?

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Next up a fabricated inlet manifold complete with fuel rails and all the fittings. I'll be able to fit my 72lb injectors to this one as well. It's 3" taller than the stock LS1/6 plastic inlet, but should still fit under my hood with the large scoop on it. It takes a 102mm throttle body too. The plenum is made of 3mm sheet.

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Right then... motor assembly

First up, the cam bearings pulled into their bores and checked the alignment. All OK there.

Then I cleaned and installed the crank, checked the bearing clearances and final fitted it. Rotates nice and smoothly.

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After that I had to do some disassembly to drill and tap the block to fit an LS2 cam chain damper as my block didn't have the necessary holes as it originally had the LS3 style tensioner which are notoriously unreliable.

Then I fitted the oil pump only to find something was binding up. Stripped the brand new pump to find a chunk of swarf inside... Not great for a new part from a respectable manufacturer (Melling!).

Then on to fitting DSS forged pistons to the LS2 rods with ARP bolts. Had the big ends honed 0.002" oversize to round them up for the new special OD bearings.

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_________________
Sera OS-65

80 Camaro, 6.0 LQ9, forged pistons, LS2 rods, 236/242, .621/.612, flowed and milled 317 heads. MS3X, 4L80e, FTI 4000 stall converter, 12 bolt, 4.11, Moroso brute strength posi, Subframe connectors, g-braces, carbon hood and bumper.


Last edited by gothicsera on June 11th, 2016, 10:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: '80 Camaro
 Post Posted: May 27th, 2016, 7:55 pm 
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Joined: May 27th, 2016, 8:47 am
Posts: 37
Location: Wisbech(ish)
Assembled the oil baffle, pick up pipe and front cover onto the engine. I did think about polishing the timing cover, but decided it was too much effort for something you can't really see once the whole engine is built.

After that I cleaned the oil pan out and fitted that.

Next up made a start on the assembly of the heads. Checked all the valves were straight as I knew there was a high likely hood of at least one being bent. Turned out there were 4 bent ones. Just as well I had some spares. What was a bit unexpected was finding a broken intake valve guide. So I made myself a new one...

I marked out the combustion chambers to see how much material I could remove to un-shroud the valves. Turned out more on the exhaust side, but generally not very much. So it didn't take long to get that seen to on both the heads.

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After all that I did have enough parts to get one head fully cleaned and assembled.

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After that I soaked the lifters in a tub of oil and then fitted them to their retainers and into the block.

Then made myself a valley cover. I didn't have one with my engine parts and it only took 30 mins to make one.

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I found a piece of cast iron to machine a valve guide from. I did consider making a bronze one, as I have some, but it seemed a bit pointless unless I made 16 new ones, which I wasn't about to do! It took about an hour to machine one up, pleased with the result... spot the home-made one.

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This was the extent of the chamber work, unshrouding the valves a bit. Don't want to remove too much material, this was about 3mm blended back toward the valve seat.

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Next thing was to fit the crank damper and then find true TDC, shouldn't need it, but it's always handy for troubleshooting later on

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Assembled the other head

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Popped it on the block, torqued it down and then installed the steam pipes

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Finally the inlet manifold and throttle body. Thankfully it still fits fine after skimming 0.050" off each head - bolts were a little tight in the holes, but it seems to work. 102mm throttle body fitted to the front, should flow ok...

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Next up, getting the accessory drive sorted.

The LS Camaro uses a low mount alternator to help with hood clearance. But the LQ block isn't drilled and tapped for the mounts, so I did that first. I also discovered that the Blazer alternator uses identical mounts to the LS one. And I have a spare one, and it only needs 2 wires to make it work.

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Worked in an idler to help with belt wrap too. It was a new one I had laying around, should be fine.

Using a steering pump from a late model V6 Camaro modified the original feed hose so that it will work properly. The remote tank will mount on the inner fender, after a quick measure up.

I also got the injectors and fuel rails installed. I'm using the 72lb/hr injectors that I had fitted on my injected SBC. They should be more than adequate and fit perfectly.

Lastly some permanent loctite to the screws on the throttle blade. It was either this or peening the ends to retain them. It's one of the things that I wanted to do to the Chinese throttle body. Other than that and a few sharp edges I can't really fault it for <$100...

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Onto fitting the motor in the car then....

I had to make a small adjustment to the idler arm and now have around 3/8" steering clearance! Yay!

Helped by a number of things, including moving the engine as far back as it will go on the mounts. I followed other peoples advice initially and set it in the 1" forward position. But I think it works nicely in the stock position.... this is using Dougs adapter plates.

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After that I got the transmission crossmember installed, this confirmed the transmission is in the same place as it was with the small block. If anything it's 1/4" further back...

The the driveshaft and a few other bits were hooked up.

The oil pan that I modified hangs just below the crossmember - I made this to the same height as the CTS-V pan knowing that this would happen. I don't run the car too low anyway, so it should be fine.

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Next up I fitted the water pump and power steering pump, no real dramas there. The alternator is very close to the sub-frame but there is enough clearance for everything to work.

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Last job was to refit the hood and chop a bit out to clear the intake

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I'm using Megasquirt 3x so I can run sequential fuel and spark. It's got more features than I need but it's future proof. It will also communicate directly with my Megashift transmission controller via CAN so it keeps things simple.

Take one bare board

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Do a bit of electrical witchcraft

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It took me a full day to wire the engine completely.

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Next I got the core support cleaned up and painted - 2k epoxy primer and then satin black top coat. Looks much better now. Let it bake in the sun for a few hours and then refitted it.

Dropped the radiator back in and worked out the hoses for it. Loads of clearance to the underside of the hood and it all worked out quite neat.

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Mounted the new fuel pump. I thought an upgrade would be beneficial with the new engine. The new one being an AEM 380lph pump. Enough to support my HP goals with some to spare...

Cut a stainless plate which bolted to the mounts I'd previously welded to my tank when I fitted my original pump, fitted a decent sized pre-filter, just need to finish the fuel lines off and I can stick some fuel in it and see if it leaks.

Ignore the low hanging mufflers, nothing connected the other side at this point...

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Next up, some fabrication...

Was never happy with the g-braces I made the first time around, it was a rush job and they clashed with the hood hinges. So I cut them up and remade them - this time I didn't have the brake booster to worry about as I now have hydroboost. I'll get them powder coated this week I expect.

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You have to love a friendly powder coater.

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Last job was to fit the exhaust and reconnect the rest of the system

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_________________
Sera OS-65

80 Camaro, 6.0 LQ9, forged pistons, LS2 rods, 236/242, .621/.612, flowed and milled 317 heads. MS3X, 4L80e, FTI 4000 stall converter, 12 bolt, 4.11, Moroso brute strength posi, Subframe connectors, g-braces, carbon hood and bumper.


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 Post subject: Re: '80 Camaro
 Post Posted: May 28th, 2016, 1:44 am 
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Joined: December 12th, 2009, 12:47 am
Posts: 704
Location: not on an oblate spheroid.
Wow, that is very impressive 8-) 8-)

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 Post subject: Re: '80 Camaro
 Post Posted: May 30th, 2016, 6:40 pm 
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Joined: May 27th, 2016, 8:47 am
Posts: 37
Location: Wisbech(ish)
Thanks :) I like to get my hands dirty...

Been at it again today... :shock: ;)

Noticed that I was getting fuel starvation at less than 1/3rd tank fuel - not ideal.... So I decided to modify my spare fuel tank with a larger rear facing sump. Just need to weld in the AN10 fitting and then leak test, paint and fit.

Hopefully another problem solved, now I just need to sort out those 1/4 times...

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_________________
Sera OS-65

80 Camaro, 6.0 LQ9, forged pistons, LS2 rods, 236/242, .621/.612, flowed and milled 317 heads. MS3X, 4L80e, FTI 4000 stall converter, 12 bolt, 4.11, Moroso brute strength posi, Subframe connectors, g-braces, carbon hood and bumper.


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 Post subject: Re: '80 Camaro
 Post Posted: May 31st, 2016, 6:38 am 
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Joined: February 17th, 2010, 8:12 am
Posts: 948
Location: Wisbekistan, Cambs.
Nothing else to say but WOW.incredible work.

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If it's got tits or tyres it's gonna be trouble.


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 Post subject: Re: '80 Camaro
 Post Posted: May 31st, 2016, 4:46 pm 
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Joined: December 12th, 2009, 7:36 am
Posts: 972
Location: Wanstead, London.
Saw the motor at the weekend, credit too you, job well done 8-)


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 Post subject: Re: '80 Camaro
 Post Posted: June 2nd, 2016, 7:14 pm 
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Joined: May 27th, 2016, 8:47 am
Posts: 37
Location: Wisbech(ish)
Thanks guys :)

See you all again soon...

New torque converter is on the way (I hope) which should perk it up a bit. Also got a few other mods and tweaks on the way...

_________________
Sera OS-65

80 Camaro, 6.0 LQ9, forged pistons, LS2 rods, 236/242, .621/.612, flowed and milled 317 heads. MS3X, 4L80e, FTI 4000 stall converter, 12 bolt, 4.11, Moroso brute strength posi, Subframe connectors, g-braces, carbon hood and bumper.


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 Post subject: Re: '80 Camaro - OS65
 Post Posted: June 11th, 2016, 10:31 pm 
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Joined: May 27th, 2016, 8:47 am
Posts: 37
Location: Wisbech(ish)
Been having a few issues so the car's been off the road for a week or so.

Fuel starvation at high RPM - so I've reworked the whole fuel system with a 1/2" feed done in Aeroquip AQP hose and 3/8" return which is hardlined.

I've also replaced the tank with a modified one which should help with the feed and return. I've also swapped the fuel pump for my spare.

The last thing I need to do is actually clip the new feed line in, but the clips I ordered haven't arrived so I haven't been able to just yet.

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I also pulled out the old 5/16" return line just to keep it tidy under there :lol:

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I also found out why my rear left tire kept going down...dammit.

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But I have some new ones to go on - new ones are 275/40/17 rather than the 255/55/17 that I currently have. I like the 28" diameter as they fit the car well, but trying to find good quality ones in that sort of diameter is actually quite difficult in the UK... I have matching fronts to fit as well.

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_________________
Sera OS-65

80 Camaro, 6.0 LQ9, forged pistons, LS2 rods, 236/242, .621/.612, flowed and milled 317 heads. MS3X, 4L80e, FTI 4000 stall converter, 12 bolt, 4.11, Moroso brute strength posi, Subframe connectors, g-braces, carbon hood and bumper.


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 Post subject: Re: '80 Camaro - OS65
 Post Posted: June 17th, 2016, 8:40 pm 
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Joined: May 27th, 2016, 8:47 am
Posts: 37
Location: Wisbech(ish)
Well, it's in bits again....

My new FTI converter arrived this afternoon so I've started to to get ready to drop the transmission out. 2 more bolts and then hoping it will drop low enough to get the converter off without having to remove one of the headers.

New converter is an FTI SRLT48082, 9.5", 4000rpm hard hit, billet front cover, lock up.

Hopefully that will wake it up a bit!

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_________________
Sera OS-65

80 Camaro, 6.0 LQ9, forged pistons, LS2 rods, 236/242, .621/.612, flowed and milled 317 heads. MS3X, 4L80e, FTI 4000 stall converter, 12 bolt, 4.11, Moroso brute strength posi, Subframe connectors, g-braces, carbon hood and bumper.


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 Post subject: Re: '80 Camaro - OS65
 Post Posted: June 18th, 2016, 8:59 pm 
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Joined: May 27th, 2016, 8:47 am
Posts: 37
Location: Wisbech(ish)
New converter is in... bloody hell what a difference.

Even with the new tyres I have a serious traction problem... :lol: :roll:

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_________________
Sera OS-65

80 Camaro, 6.0 LQ9, forged pistons, LS2 rods, 236/242, .621/.612, flowed and milled 317 heads. MS3X, 4L80e, FTI 4000 stall converter, 12 bolt, 4.11, Moroso brute strength posi, Subframe connectors, g-braces, carbon hood and bumper.


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