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Old 07-01-2013, 03:22 PM   #1
OldCarGuy
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Default LS Engine Mounts for Original C2 Chassis

Wondering if anyone would like to share their experiences or opinions about the reliability and suitability of the LS-type engine mounts on the market that enable the installation of a LS-type engine onto an original C2 chassis. Additionally, what challenges come with this type of conversion, e.g. A/C compressor location/relocation, oil pan, transmission mount alignment, etc. Thanks
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Old 07-01-2013, 04:07 PM   #2
John McGraw
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You do not use LS style mounts, you use adapter plates to install original C2 style mounts on a Ls engine. Everybody sells these adapter plates. These plates allow the engine and trans mount to land on the original locations on the C2 chassis. There are way too many possible serpentine drive setups to even begin to comment on what fits and what does not, but it is not a problem finding brackets to mount all the accessories. I find the OEM C5 Corvette accessory drive setup to be about the best choice, but you will have to buy an aftermarket bracket to mount the A/C compressor, depending on which compressor you are using.


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Old 07-01-2013, 05:31 PM   #3
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All good to know, thanks. My question was really centered on the array of adapter plates out there, understand original-style motor mounts are being used.
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Old 07-01-2013, 08:13 PM   #4
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there are basically only 2 types of adapters.. you can look at the hole patterns to know which is which.. one type locates the engine 1" further forward than the other. The type that sits further back, puts the rear of the LS within 1/4" of the original Gen I block rear, so the trans will line up best and you will have a little more room in the front to work with accessories and air intake. But you can make either style work.
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Old 07-01-2013, 08:15 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John McGraw View Post
You do not use LS style mounts, you use adapter plates to install original C2 style mounts on a Ls engine. Everybody sells these adapter plates. These plates allow the engine and trans mount to land on the original locations on the C2 chassis. There are way too many possible serpentine drive setups to even begin to comment on what fits and what does not, but it is not a problem finding brackets to mount all the accessories. I find the OEM C5 Corvette accessory drive setup to be about the best choice, but you will have to buy an aftermarket bracket to mount the A/C compressor, depending on which compressor you are using.


Regards, John McGraw
John,
Question on using the C5 OEM accessory drive.. does the power steering pump clear the original C2 frame and control arms? I didn't think it did.. thus the 4th Gen Camaro accessory drive was a good choice if you want p/s.
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Old 07-01-2013, 08:22 PM   #6
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As John said, there are many options on these conversions. If you tell us what accessories you want to run, what suspension mods, which trans, etc you're thinking of using, then we can offer more advice.

I used a 4th gen Camaro oil pan, modified the water pump to clear the original control arm on the passenger side, and only run a/c and alternator. TKO600 for a trans. Everybody has some odd ball config or unique parts that really no two are exactly alike. And I'm sure we'd all do something different if we started over knowing what we know now.
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Old 07-02-2013, 12:18 PM   #7
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Corvette birdcage:
Like John mentions, there are tons of folks making the adapter plates, some work well, some don't.
If their aluminum and 3/8" thick, the engine will likely sit higher than you want. I switched over to 'Vetteworks adapters which are steel, and thinner and that helped a bunch.
Regarding pulleys, A/C, etc: if you're running a stock frame you'll give yourself a LOT more room if you trash the stock A-arms. Savitske Classic and Customs sells SPC adjustable A-arms with tall ball joints that not only improve your car's camber, but make more space for pulleys, and even for radiator fan clearance.
Stock Corvette LS6/LS1 brackets and pulleys can be made to work, but the A/C won't fit into a stock frame. You'll need to talk to Street and Performance about a smaller than stock P/S puley, and you'll need to press the pulley on, with the mounting bolts already on the pump, since there's no clearance to install them afterwards.
You'll also need to change out the water pump outlets, but that's pretty well documented.
As far as the oil pan, just use an f-body (Camaro) pan. It's snug dropping the motor into place, but it JUST clears the power steering. Installing a new pan on an LS motor is super simple.
Assuming you run a 5 speed, the Keisler kit fits pretty well, but like everything else it takes work and patience.
Street and Performance also have shorty headers that will work with the stock Z-bar, if you choose to go that route. I'd stongly suggest you have them tack weld the headers and send them to you like that for a fit-check before you have S&P final welded and ceramic coated.
I'm running an LS6 in my '65. If you need any pictures I can send them to you.
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Old 07-02-2013, 07:51 PM   #8
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Rick, Thanks much for the input. That's the kind of detail I was hoping for. I would very much invite all pics you would like to send (vette4u@earthlink.net). I take it you added PS too? Thanks
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Old 07-03-2013, 02:39 AM   #9
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My car already had power steering, so I just used the stock LS6 brackets and pump/reservoir and then once I had the smaller pulley (to clear the A-arms) I had custom hoses to match the new P/S pump to the steering unit.
I have pictures here:
http://livesofrickandlisa.9f.com/photo_4.html

I can send more detailed shots if you need, but there are a few there already that show some of the problems you'll run into.
And just to clarify, I'm guessing you can find a pulley system that'll work with A/C. I'm going to wait until I have time/money to transfer over onto an SR III frame, which I believe will allow use of the stock A/C mounting brackets and compressor. I wanted to use stock brackets for the P/S and alternator for simplicity and reliability.
I lack the space, money, and talent to do the whole rebuild at once, so I broke the project into more manageable phases and just got the car running with the drivetrain, wiring, gauges, etc.
I'm just gonna enjoy it for a year or so and then do the chassis swap and paint when I'm ready. It's a ton of work, especially if you're marginally talented like me, but the LS motors are awesome. I used a Speartech wiring harness which simplified things greatly.
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Old 07-03-2013, 07:38 AM   #10
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Rick, excellent job on the '65! Thanks much for your insight and pics.
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Old 07-03-2013, 09:58 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rick piras View Post
Corvette birdcage:
Like John mentions, there are tons of folks making the adapter plates, some work well, some don't.
If their aluminum and 3/8" thick, the engine will likely sit higher than you want. I switched over to 'Vetteworks adapters which are steel, and thinner and that helped a bunch.
Regarding pulleys, A/C, etc: if you're running a stock frame you'll give yourself a LOT more room if you trash the stock A-arms. Savitske Classic and Customs sells SPC adjustable A-arms with tall ball joints that not only improve your car's camber, but make more space for pulleys, and even for radiator fan clearance.
Stock Corvette LS6/LS1 brackets and pulleys can be made to work, but the A/C won't fit into a stock frame. You'll need to talk to Street and Performance about a smaller than stock P/S puley, and you'll need to press the pulley on, with the mounting bolts already on the pump, since there's no clearance to install them afterwards.
You'll also need to change out the water pump outlets, but that's pretty well documented.
As far as the oil pan, just use an f-body (Camaro) pan. It's snug dropping the motor into place, but it JUST clears the power steering. Installing a new pan on an LS motor is super simple.
Assuming you run a 5 speed, the Keisler kit fits pretty well, but like everything else it takes work and patience.
Street and Performance also have shorty headers that will work with the stock Z-bar, if you choose to go that route. I'd stongly suggest you have them tack weld the headers and send them to you like that for a fit-check before you have S&P final welded and ceramic coated.
I'm running an LS6 in my '65. If you need any pictures I can send them to you.
Holley and Qwik sell brackets to mount a Sanden Compressor high which the C3 guys have used. A Vintage air front runner is also an option. Running hoses to the water pump looks to be a little tricky too.

Another thing to consider is if you are running a manual, you need either a hydraulic clutch conversion or mounting a pivot ball for the z bar which must also line up with the mounts.

Rick, great swap
Which seats are you running?
Did you get the pivot ball and adaptors from Vetteworks?


Last edited by 93Polo; 07-03-2013 at 10:04 AM.
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Old 07-03-2013, 10:59 AM   #12
rick piras
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I used the Z-bar adapter (pivot ball) from the Street Shop. It was a nicely designed/machined piece. I also started out with their adapter plates which were really bad, and ridiculously priced. Too thick for the engine to sit correctly in the cradle, and none of the holes lined up.
The seats are out of a Fiero, and I'm very happy with them. They only required some small, simple plates welded to the Fiero sliders to work and attach at the stock seat mounting positions.

Good luck with your project.
Rick
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Old 07-03-2013, 10:59 AM
 
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