Author Topic: 5.3 swap  (Read 1610 times)

Offline Zac.richardson1

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5.3 swap
« on: June 05, 2017, 09:01:51 PM »
Im looking to put a 5.3 out of a newer truck into my 85 k10. Im wondering what all i would have to buy besides the 5.3 motor and wiring harness. If possible could anyone give me an estimate on how much all this stuff will end up costing me? Im going for bone stock 5.3 motor. I understand that with a new bellhousing the 5.3 will bolt up to my 700r4 tranny is this correct? Just looking for some help thanks

Offline roundhouse

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5.3 swap
« Reply #1 on: June 06, 2017, 10:44:10 PM »
We paid $650 for the engine with harness and computer

$400 for computer and harness modifications

about another $1000 for small stuff
Like

gas tank from a 1987
Sender for 87 tank
Late model pump
New lines and filter and lots of fittings
Adapter fitting for PS pump
Motor mounts
Camaro exhaust manifolds
Adapters for temp and oil pressure gauges


There's threads out there on the internet that some people detail and itemize every little thing required



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« Last Edit: June 09, 2017, 12:28:00 AM by roundhouse »

Offline Zac.richardson1

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Re: 5.3 swap
« Reply #2 on: June 07, 2017, 06:59:37 PM »
Yea ive been researching and the problem i find is that everyone goes into TOO MUCH detail. I feel that alot of the stuff theyre expecting me to buy are not needed and wanted a source that i can ask questions. Realistically i just need a list of everything i absolutely need. I dont want to get suckered into buying a bunch of nonsense i dont need.

Offline roundhouse

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5.3 swap
« Reply #3 on: June 08, 2017, 11:59:27 PM »
I listed the big stuff

We also installed a steering box brace while the engine was out
And we had to put a one inch spacer between  the engine mounts and the frame to get the oil pan  to clear the frame

You'll spend the most time messing with the fuel pump and lines

If you have room in your driveway , get a complete donor vehicle ,

We did the harness ourselves  and  sent the computer to
"Team208Motorsports"

He will do the harness  also
And next time we do a LS swap , I will send him the harness too

He modifies the harness and adds a fusebox and wires
So you have three wires to hook up , to the battery and ignition switch and you're ready to run

We used the upper rad hose from the donor truck and also the lower too I think

You need to add a small rubber hose from the thermostat housing to the radatior

Just read as much as you can find and start wrenching

Don't spend too much time researching  it
Just enough to feel sort of comfortable getting started and get to work.

If you have questions , ask em .
Once you get started you will understand what you need to do

You do have to have the computer modified to remove anti theft stuff and if your truck doesn't have to be emission tested then the computer programmer can remove the rear oxygen sensors and if you're using a manual transmission they can remove the "torque management " that keeps the engine from making full power because even though GM one of the largest automakers in the world , they are not able to design and manufacture an automatic transmission that won't self destruct behind a V-8 engine at full throttle


We used Dirty Dingo engine mounts
They bolt to the LS and then to the stock clamshell mounts

Depending on the year of your 700r it may have some electronic stuff or not

I'd probably use the Trans  from the donor, easier that  way  to just leave em bolted together and let the LS  computer control the Trans

My swap was 4wd and we swapped in a five speed from a 2007 Silverado and that required us ing a NP208 transfer case from behind a TH 400 transmission , new driveshafts etc

Swapped from A mechanical clutch pedal to hydraulic clutch pedal etc

Every swap will be different so it's hard to say exactly what you need to buy and do
And you are correct , a lot of swappers buy all kinds of stuff that you may not need
And may not can afford
We were on a budget , trying to do the engine swap for less than $1500 , we went a little over but not much
To save money I fabbed the exhaust myself from the Camaro downpipes
I smashed the insides from the cats , and cut the pipes and rotated them to fit and welded them back on
I reused the radatior hoses
I did install new oil pan and valve cover gaskets and intake manifold gasket
And water pump since it was so much easier with the engine out

I modified and reused the air intake hose from the donor truck






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« Last Edit: June 09, 2017, 12:26:50 AM by roundhouse »

Offline roundhouse

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5.3 swap
« Reply #4 on: June 09, 2017, 12:30:00 AM »

Shows how I used the Camaro manifolds and downpipes

Yes those are old license plates being used as heat shields to help keep the heat from the fuel lines

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« Last Edit: June 09, 2017, 12:32:32 AM by roundhouse »

Offline roundhouse

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Re: 5.3 swap
« Reply #5 on: June 09, 2017, 12:36:56 AM »


Throttle cable from donor truck

It's too long inside the cab
I made a loop to take up the extra

Not shown in the picture but I used a bolt and nut trapped inside the loop to keep the loop from collapsing




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Offline Zac.richardson1

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Re: 5.3 swap
« Reply #6 on: June 11, 2017, 04:03:05 PM »
gotcha thanks for the help. Im buying the motor thursday and gonna get it put in very soon. Ill let you know if i have any complications.

Offline roundhouse

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5.3 swap
« Reply #7 on: June 11, 2017, 10:29:25 PM »
Make sure whoever takes it out does NOT cut any wires
And get the entire harness from the fusebox under the hood to the O2 sensors

Make them UNPLUG the wires and tell them any cut wires or any connectors with BROKEN TABS  will be a deal killer
They like breaking the locking tabs on the connectors and cutting wires

take some masking tape and label the O2 plugs driver and passenger side

If the motor is already been pulled
Check it over very closely with a bright flashlight
Check the valve covers and oil pan and all the bolt on stuff for damage
Make sure you get the starter and alternator air intake hose , throttle cable uncut etc

Get the fuel lines back to the tank of you can

There's a lot of fittings and stuff  you can use

Most places have a gorilla with a sawzall and bolt cutters  remove the engine

Get the down pipes with the 02 sensors
A lot of places want to sell all that stuff separate because they get more money that way

If they try to pull that trick just take your money and leave

Run a carfax on  the VIN of the donor vehicle to see if it was built with a  a 5.3 or if its a 4.8

Lot of places will lie and say it's a 5.3 because it's worth more money
They will also lie and say it has 125k miles on it and when you pull out your smartphone and plug the VIN into carfax , the carfax report will say it has 275k miles

And make sure the engine , harness and computer are all from the same vehicle

And if it has the drive by wire gas pedal , usually 2003 or newer , get the pedal assembly and the module from the same donor vehicle

If you get it from a different vehicle it won't work
Unless you're gonna swap it to a drive by cable

Can you tell what I learned when I bought my 5.3 ?
Unless you personally know the seller , just assume everything they say is a lie and verify it yourself before you hand over any money

Take a bright flashlight and carefully examine the engine and harness and computer
And if there's anything that's damaged or from a different donor vehicle , just walk away

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« Last Edit: June 11, 2017, 10:36:27 PM by roundhouse »

Offline cornerstoneengin

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Re: 5.3 swap
« Reply #8 on: June 13, 2017, 01:56:41 PM »
In the middle of a couple ls swaps. I'm going with FiTech fuel injection. For $800, you get brand new self tuning ecm, wiring harness, and handheld controller. Its $1000 with trans control option. And if you want a custom intake manifold. They'll sell you a complete intake manifold with injectors, rails, throttle body, and all sensors needed with their ecm, harness and controller for $1700. Its ready to bolt on and run. They have easy install fuel systems too. Text me if you need anymore help. Kevin 281-460-8462

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