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Anyone with a 5.3 in a 73-87

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by silveradoreb, Mar 18, 2007.

  1. silveradoreb

    silveradoreb 1/2 ton status

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    I have an 84 CUCV. The guy who owned it before swapped in a 350 from a 78 van. Well it is very old and tired and i loved my 5.3 in my z71. I was looking at a crossmember from pacific fab and one of their motors. How much work is really going to be involved, they say only 5 wires. Also will it bolt right up with my TH400? And gauges- hyroboost? seems like there could be alot of small issues.
     
  2. 4X4HIGH

    4X4HIGH 1 ton status Premium Member GMOTM Winner

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    You need to talk with Ryan at Pacific Fab. He has swapped into his blazer a 6.0 but i'm pretty sure he has also done the 5.3 swap. He is the man with all your answers. Not sure how much info you will get for free since that is what their shop does for a living but it can't hurt to ask.
     
  3. Russell

    Russell LB7 Tahoe Status Premium Member GMOTM Winner

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    You can bolt the TH400 straight up, but you need a special flexplate to do so. The 5.3L's flywheel sits about .4" recessed as compared to the old Gen I & II small blocks.

    Gauges are fairly easy too, there is a little adapter bolted onto the engine just above the oil filter that can be drilled and tapped for a stock sending unit, and there is a plug on the rear of the passenger side head that can pulled, then using an adapter that S&P sells, bolt a stock sending unit straight in for the temp gauge.

    Engine mounts are just a matter of bolting on the adapter plates, and dropping it in.

    Hydroboost shouldn't be too tough either. You may even be able to bolt your old power steering pump straight up! If not, just look for one from a 6.0L, or a 6.6L, both came with hydroboost factory. The pump still uses the same fittings as your 84 does.

    You will need to get yourself an F-body exhaust manifold for the passenger side, as the truck manifold sits too far from the block and hits the frame. The driver's side fits just fine. Exhaust shouldn't be much different than a regular exhaust system.

    If you don't want an emissions install you can eliminate the rear O2 sensors, cats, EGR and EVAP canister in the prom when you get VATS disabled. Unfortunately, PCM flashing is like 350 bucks minimum, and all they have to do is uncheck a few checkboxes on their computer screen, and spend 10 seconds re-flashing your PCM.

    Fuel system shouldn't be half bad, need an inline pump that can produce at least 60 PSI of fuel (walbro 255lph would be fine), and a high pressure filter. There are adapters available to convert the factory fuel lines from their press on fit to a typical -6AN fitting, then just run braided down to your frame, and run that all the way back to your tank. You can also buy in-tank pumps capable of running the proper pressures / volumes, and use factory TBI lines, less the filter all the way up to the fuel rail, then buy a set of Saginaw to -6AN fittings from aeroquip to hook up to the -6AN fittings that hook to the fuel rail lines.

    It will be easiest to install the radiator from one of the newer trucks, since it has a couple extra nipples on it for steam lines and such, but it is possible to use an older one, and return the steam lines to the water pump and such. The stock 3 cores provide plenty of cooling capability.

    You can try and run the stock engine driven fan, or get a set of windstar / taurus fans to run electric.

    If you get a 99-01ish engine, they are still cable driven, and the cable can bolt straight up to your stock pedal by slightly enlarging the hole for it on the firewall.

    I think that is most everything... Might be forgetting a thing or two...

    I'm expecting to have about 2500 into my swap when all is said in done, including the cost of the engine (800)
     
  4. noahrob

    noahrob 1/2 ton status Author

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    Do It Do It Do It Do It...
     
  5. silveradoreb

    silveradoreb 1/2 ton status

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    Thanks for the great information, when I do it I will start a build thread for everyone to see
     
  6. Russell

    Russell LB7 Tahoe Status Premium Member GMOTM Winner

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    I'll be doing a full write-up when I get the parts collected for mine :)
     

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