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Hello everyone,
I have an 04 auto with 87k miles. Only mods are k&n cold air and corsa catback.
I want to build the engine to be stronger, eventually I want to stroke it and swap the intake and tb and build the heads and drop a cam in it and dyno tune it, but I want to start with brakes, transmission, wheel and tires, and rear end so I dont immediately destroy them.
I need suggestions on whether just running slotted rotors and performance ceramic pads will do, or if I need to actually upgrade the brakes and what you guys suggest.
Same with the rear end, what do you guys suggest doing with that other than swapping a ford 9 inch in it, and what gears are good for daily driving but still able to put it down.

And finally I have found a couple different websites and an article which briefly described how to swap the internals from a 4l65e to a 4l60e so that it literally becomes a 4l65e and can handle more power.
Just wondering if anyone knows exactly what all is needed. All I can remember is the input shaft, the planetary I believe had 5 pinions instead of 4 or something like that, and obviously either a tune or a 4l65e tcm. They also talked about the clutch packs and upgrading all that. Just wondering what you guys would recommend doing with this transmission so it can hold at least 600hp, which I doubt I'll ever get it to, but that way if I do it will be able to hold it.
Thanks in advance and I look forward to hearing from you guys!
 

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calling kfxguy...

...anyway, apart from the guts, it's basically the same trans. I think the input shaft IS the same with LS applications, just not with other 4l60e applications. You should just be able to swap in a 4l65e.

That being said, you'd be better off having a 4l60e or 4l65e built right than swapping in a stock 4l65e.
 

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Alrighty, so I found the article and reread it.
They replaced the fourth gear servo with a sonnax billet servo, used a red eagle red oxide clutch kit for 1-2 and z pack clutch kit for 3-4, a beast sunshell, the 5 pinion carrier, a high-intensity band, and an ATI torque converter along with getting a trans-go reprogrammer.
Another question I have is if I take the transmission out and rebuild it myself (I am currently in school for automotive and the instructor let's us bring our own projects to learn real scenarios and such. So I have the tools and shop to do the work) should I replace the torque converter then? And if so am I able to upgrade the torque converter before upgrading the cam? Same question for am I able to rebuild my head and have it ported and polished and upgrade the valve train before upgrading the cam as well? Or would these have negative consequences? I want to take this in stages and it is my daily car, but I want to make it more badass and strippable. I wanted to t56 swap it but it just seems like that isn't in my budget with the cost of those trannys. And auto is fine with me I just want to make sure the car can handle the upgraded engine. If anyone knows of any kits or reputable places to order these parts i would greatly appreciate it. I am looking at Monster in a box kits but i don't know if they contain the right things id need.. i know more about ac systems and engines than i do anything else on cars. And I probably know the least about automatic transmissions, so any advice would be extremely helpful. Thanks again in advance.

(Eventually I want to install long tube headers, port and polish the heads, swap a ls3 or ls6 intake whichever I can find local, have the cylinders either cleaned up to I believe 4.060 bore and stroke the motor, or bore it further and sleeve it and stroke the motor, read articles on 454 ls1s pushing 700hp NA and that sounds like fun and all but I think i would rather throw in a 4.125 stroke 427 stroker kit and keep the cylinder bores in a Safe spot, and finally a good thumping ass cam that sounds good and performs well. But preparing the car for that power comes first lol)
 

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Discussion Starter #4
calling kfxguy...

...anyway, apart from the guts, it's basically the same trans. I think the input shaft IS the same with LS applications, just not with other 4l60e applications. You should just be able to swap in a 4l65e.

That being said, you'd be better off having a 4l60e or 4l65e built right than swapping in a stock 4l65e.
Yes thats exactly what I think, spending a grand to make the one I got better is better to me than dropping several thousand to just get a better one.
The main issue I have is not knowing where to get parts, and exactly what parts I need.
 

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I found this kit that looks pretty awesome, has the red eagle clutch packs and everything else for a full rebuild, I think the only thing I'll need is to still get an upgraded sun shell, the 5 pinion planetary, the reprogrammer, and the torque converter. I work at oreillys and im unable to get any of these through them so I'm not sure where to look. Would summit
 

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If you have a builder Dana from pro built automatics is THE man to go to in regards to kits for 4L60s in my opinion.
Hes been doing GM transmissions for 40 years. Make sure you call, not email.
 

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Interesting on timing. I'm doing most of what you are talking about. There is a lot to learn about what comes first and what you can and can't do with the engine and trans. I've been reading LS engine books and canvassed the internet when it comes to A4 mods and the different places that upgrade the trans.

You're getting on track with the trans upgrades. I will post mine later as I'm at work. I had mine done locally and went through Certified Transmissions. Headquartered out of Nebraska, they are nation wide and carry a 3 year 100k warranty. Remanufactured Auto Transmissions - Industry Best Warranty

I also had the rear diff rebuilt by Charles Ready of Ready Motorsports. He takes the referrals from Gforce Engineering which is where I bought all my parts and then shipped the diff and parts to him. He does the work for $400 plus shipping. That's a good deal and he's rebuilt dozens of the Dana 44 and other differentials. I have the Eaton Truetrac diff carrier, Motive ring and pinion gears at 3.70 ratio and a full seal and bearing rebuild. Charles claimed should be good for under 800 rwhp. I don't intend to make more than 500 rwhp when done. You can reprogram the ECU with axle gear ratio and tire size to correct the speedo.

Regarding the engine, stock LS1 5.7 has a 3.898" bore and with aluminum block and cast sleeves you can only hone bore it to 3.910 I believe. The older SBC could only go to 3.905" So you will have to go to an iron block or something other than the Gen III aluminum block for a larger bore. You can stroke it as I've learned there are plenty of stroker rotating assemblies out there. Heads you can go LS1 (241) or LS2 or LS6. LS6 were on Corvettes and other and flowed much better than the LS1's. Those are what I'm planning on for my winter heads, cam, intake and fuel mods. The cam is the last thing you should be planning so you have compression, CFM, intake and exhaust planned out beforehand. Learn as much as you can about cams. There are a lot of parameters: lift, duration, LSA and other to know so you can spec you cam correctly. You might consider calling and talking with some of the cam mfr's to get an idea.

I have no change on intake except K&N filter. Exhaust is Kooks long tube headers with Cats and Corsa 3" exhaust.

Regarding brakes, I upgraded to the 05 / 06 front and rear calipers. The front will fit with the 12mm bolts with sleeves (05 / 06 are 14mm. The rear is a different rotor with stock caliper. They are a big improvement over stock 04 brakes.

Running Gforce engineering 3.5" driveshaft. The adapter flange provided is made to fit 04 or 05/06 pinion flange.
 

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For learning about engines and rebuild I'm reading How to Rebuild GM LS-Series Engines by Chris Werner and read How to Build and Modify GM LS-Series Engines by Joseph Potak.

On youtube I've watched Pete's Garage, Myvintageiron and other vids on engine stuff incl cam, LS teardown and rebuild, lot's of good stuff. Talk to machine shops about your plans and get their input. Many are well seasoned and can help you make a decision about which direction to go. I thought I was going to do a full rebuild and then decided to just do the top end. The crank and bottom end is good to close to 600 hp. Your best bet is to take your time and learn about all the ins and outs of engines, trans, diff and other components.
 

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Interesting on timing. I'm doing most of what you are talking about. There is a lot to learn about what comes first and what you can and can't do with the engine and trans. I've been reading LS engine books and canvassed the internet when it comes to A4 mods and the different places that upgrade the trans.

You're getting on track with the trans upgrades. I will post mine later as I'm at work. I had mine done locally and went through Certified Transmissions. Headquartered out of Nebraska, they are nation wide and carry a 3 year 100k warranty. Remanufactured Auto Transmissions - Industry Best Warranty

I also had the rear diff rebuilt by Charles Ready of Ready Motorsports. He takes the referrals from Gforce Engineering which is where I bought all my parts and then shipped the diff and parts to him. He does the work for $400 plus shipping. That's a good deal and he's rebuilt dozens of the Dana 44 and other differentials. I have the Eaton Truetrac diff carrier, Motive ring and pinion gears at 3.70 ratio and a full seal and bearing rebuild. Charles claimed should be good for under 800 rwhp. I don't intend to make more than 500 rwhp when done. You can reprogram the ECU with axle gear ratio and tire size to correct the speedo.

Regarding the engine, stock LS1 5.7 has a 3.898" bore and with aluminum block and cast sleeves you can only hone bore it to 3.910 I believe. The older SBC could only go to 3.905" So you will have to go to an iron block or something other than the Gen III aluminum block for a larger bore. You can stroke it as I've learned there are plenty of stroker rotating assemblies out there. Heads you can go LS1 (241) or LS2 or LS6. LS6 were on Corvettes and other and flowed much better than the LS1's. Those are what I'm planning on for my winter heads, cam, intake and fuel mods. The cam is the last thing you should be planning so you have compression, CFM, intake and exhaust planned out beforehand. Learn as much as you can about cams. There are a lot of parameters: lift, duration, LSA and other to know so you can spec you cam correctly. You might consider calling and talking with some of the cam mfr's to get an idea.

I have no change on intake except K&N filter. Exhaust is Kooks long tube headers with Cats and Corsa 3" exhaust.

Regarding brakes, I upgraded to the 05 / 06 front and rear calipers. The front will fit with the 12mm bolts with sleeves (05 / 06 are 14mm. The rear is a different rotor with stock caliper. They are a big improvement over stock 04 brakes.

Running Gforce engineering 3.5" driveshaft. The adapter flange provided is made to fit 04 or 05/06 pinion flange.
Thanks for all the great advice! I will probably start with the 05/06 brake swap, my front left caliper is clunking and feels like its going out so I want to go ahead and do that, I work at oreillys so I can get the oem parts cheap cheap, so I will probably buy the stock 05/06 front calipers rotors and ceramic brake pads from oreillys and do that first. Probably look for wheels and tires too and do all of that at once. I would like to get the kit for poly bushings and replace all the bushings too to help stiffen it up. While in the wheel well ill check the tie rods and such and replace those if needed so the underside is good to go. But I will take my time with the rest. I need to research what cam I want, whether I'm going to stroke and if so which kit, and if im going to bore and sleeve the cylinders or just hone it so theyre clean walls. I read somewhere else that the maximum bore of the ls1 was 4.060, but I guess I read that wrong. I could always bore and sleeve it at 4.125 and stroke it with a 4.25 crank for 454ci :LOL: make probably 600 hp with heads cam and tune. Read an article on a crew that did this and it was a monster.
But the transmission and read end come first to me so I dont break them. No fun having a big motor that has nothing to turn. And I would like to do the work myself so I save some money and learn at the same time.
 

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You won't find the PBR (OEM) calipers through any autoparts store. Those come from Australia and are hard to find. I'd have to look my source up at home, but I did find one new one (driver side I think) and a used on in good shape on ebay. No or few new ones available for passenger side as I recall. I may have gotten sides swapped above, but you'll figure it out. I'd look for good used ones that were on cars wrecked with the lowest mileage you can verify.

You can make about 600 hp with the LS1 and likely under $5k. Hawk motorsports has a kit with 5.3 heads, cam, FAST intake, fuel rail and injectors claimed to make 450-470 rwhp which puts the crank at close to 600, no bottom end work.
 

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You won't find the PBR (OEM) calipers through any autoparts store. Those come from Australia and are hard to find. I'd have to look my source up at home, but I did find one new one (driver side I think) and a used on in good shape on ebay. No or few new ones available for passenger side as I recall. I may have gotten sides swapped above, but you'll figure it out. I'd look for good used ones that were on cars wrecked with the lowest mileage you can verify.

You can make about 600 hp with the LS1 and likely under $5k. Hawk motorsports has a kit with 5.3 heads, cam, FAST intake, fuel rail and injectors claimed to make 450-470 rwhp which puts the crank at close to 600, no bottom end work.
I'm pretty sure they're available through oreillys, I may be wrong though. We have a company that remans them.
And ill look into that kit though, that sounds awesome. Would those 5.3 heads be better than if I ported the ls1 heads? I'm sure it would be cheaper to find used 5.3 heads and just rebuild them right?
 

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Amazing things can be done with the 241 castings. 243 castings are also still plentiful.

What limits the 706/862 heads is the valve size, although the come with some of the smallest LS combustion chambers pn a factory head. Castech 706's also have porosity/cracking issues by the head bolt bosses/oil returns that generally need to be fixed. 706/862 heads work very well on 5.3 engines because of the compression ratio. You might want to up the valve size on them if you want to use them on a 5.7l

Send in what you can get a hold of to a reputable shop that does the work. 241, 243, or 706/862 heads can all be made to perform well.
 

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Interesting on timing. I'm doing most of what you are talking about. There is a lot to learn about what comes first and what you can and can't do with the engine and trans. I've been reading LS engine books and canvassed the internet when it comes to A4 mods and the different places that upgrade the trans.

You're getting on track with the trans upgrades. I will post mine later as I'm at work. I had mine done locally and went through Certified Transmissions. Headquartered out of Nebraska, they are nation wide and carry a 3 year 100k warranty. Remanufactured Auto Transmissions - Industry Best Warranty

I also had the rear diff rebuilt by Charles Ready of Ready Motorsports. He takes the referrals from Gforce Engineering which is where I bought all my parts and then shipped the diff and parts to him. He does the work for $400 plus shipping. That's a good deal and he's rebuilt dozens of the Dana 44 and other differentials. I have the Eaton Truetrac diff carrier, Motive ring and pinion gears at 3.70 ratio and a full seal and bearing rebuild. Charles claimed should be good for under 800 rwhp. I don't intend to make more than 500 rwhp when done. You can reprogram the ECU with axle gear ratio and tire size to correct the speedo.

Regarding the engine, stock LS1 5.7 has a 3.898" bore and with aluminum block and cast sleeves you can only hone bore it to 3.910 I believe. The older SBC could only go to 3.905" So you will have to go to an iron block or something other than the Gen III aluminum block for a larger bore. You can stroke it as I've learned there are plenty of stroker rotating assemblies out there. Heads you can go LS1 (241) or LS2 or LS6. LS6 were on Corvettes and other and flowed much better than the LS1's. Those are what I'm planning on for my winter heads, cam, intake and fuel mods. The cam is the last thing you should be planning so you have compression, CFM, intake and exhaust planned out beforehand. Learn as much as you can about cams. There are a lot of parameters: lift, duration, LSA and other to know so you can spec you cam correctly. You might consider calling and talking with some of the cam mfr's to get an idea.

I have no change on intake except K&N filter. Exhaust is Kooks long tube headers with Cats and Corsa 3" exhaust.

Regarding brakes, I upgraded to the 05 / 06 front and rear calipers. The front will fit with the 12mm bolts with sleeves (05 / 06 are 14mm. The rear is a different rotor with stock caliper. They are a big improvement over stock 04 brakes.

Running Gforce engineering 3.5" driveshaft. The adapter flange provided is made to fit 04 or 05/06 pinion flange.
Not really sure i would agree with planning a cam last. I think it would be better to figure out everything as a whole then making a cam "fit" what you already have.

Find a reputable shop and tell them what you want the engine to do. They should be able to spec everything.
 

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No idea why you would spend money to buy stock heads then mail them out to get worked. By time you spend all that with all the shipping included you could by a set of aftermarket castings thatll out perform them. With cyber Monday coming up TSP will likely have a sale in PRCs.

Also an OTR intake is going to out perform a drop in k&n.

There is no ls1 making 470whp with that hawk kit. There's also a ton more you'll need and SHOULD do with that kit including lifters, oil pump, timing kit, trunking upgrade, gaskets, and bolts. There's another $1k on your build in additional parts. 450whp is not where near 600 crank, and talking about crank HP is like measuring your dick from behind your balls.

Anytime you THINK you know what a build will cost, add a couple grand more.
 

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I'm pretty sure they're available through oreillys, I may be wrong though. We have a company that remans them.
And ill look into that kit though, that sounds awesome. Would those 5.3 heads be better than if I ported the ls1 heads? I'm sure it would be cheaper to find used 5.3 heads and just rebuild them right?
If you're interested, I have the old calipers and rotors off my 05 - front and back. Everything was working great when removed. Message me if you have questions.
You should be fine with the 4l65e. The only difference in the 60 and 65 is the front and rear planets. Just make sure all the internals are in good shape. And make sure those planet gears have no play in them. Most replacement parts are cheap but foreign made.
Typically the aluminum blocks are only good for .010" oversize. At least the LS2s. Speaking of LS2, have you thought of finding a core and building that instead? Just a thought.
 

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If you're interested, I have the old calipers and rotors off my 05 - front and back. Everything was working great when removed. Message me if you have questions.
You should be fine with the 4l65e. The only difference in the 60 and 65 is the front and rear planets. Just make sure all the internals are in good shape. And make sure those planet gears have no play in them. Most replacement parts are cheap but foreign made.
Typically the aluminum blocks are only good for .010" oversize. At least the LS2s. Speaking of LS2, have you thought of finding a core and building that instead? Just a thought.
I may have to take you up on those calipers.
And ive thought about it but I already have this engine and transmission and I feel it would be cheaper to build these up and port the heads i have than to buy a whole other block or transmission or heads. Again, im not building this for a race car, I just want to make it perform better and have some more spunk. A stroker with cam would do that as well as making it sound awesome, which is why I suggested those. So I guess I need to do some research on cams. I honestly don't know much about cams at all.
Another question though, would I be better off building this 4l60 up or getting a t56? I got a local guy with an lt t56 I can get for around 1300, just have to replace the input shaft and a few other parts and get the tail housing and bell housing and then the pedal, clutch, flywheel and the hydraulic system to make it work. But thats several thousand compared to 1k for a rebuild kit to make the 4l60 hold 500hp.
I. Would love the 6 speed but it would be better to just buy a 6 speed car lol.
 

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if you do a stroker, i would suggest building a separate engine to the specs you want and swapping, just for ease. no sense in car downtime.

there are many LS builders out there that can help you with the specs you will need to achieve the goals you want.

you could also consider forced induction. that might get you to your power goals a little easier.
 
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