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Old 05-14-2018, 01:47 PM   #1
Pillow
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Default Pillows LS swap into 960 build v-log - the shade tree conversion bible

This conversion has been a longtime in the making. Thanks for the information and support of the TB members and LS1Tech Hybrid conversions along the way that have provided guidance and motivation.

Most all updates will be in text and/or video blogs on YouTube. With Photobucket gone, I have been lazy on transitioning to a different picture hosting service. YouTube integrates well on my phone, which helps post information quickly and easily. Links will be provided as progress moves along. Note that I do not edit my videos or add any bling whatsoever, sorry if they are dry but at the same time they are short and zero rambletron to waste your time. I hate watching 15 minutes of blather for no real information at all.

The victim is a 1992 Volvo 960 wagon named Savage Wagon. Nothing yet is Savage about it at all... When backs up 400ish HP then the 960 will be pretty Savage ;)

I know there are multiple ways to setup and install a LS powerplant in your Volvo swap. The goal is to retain all factory functionality with dash gauges and A/C. Basically a stock looking and functioning swap that you would be proud to daily. There are numerous swaps that have been completed that do not account for A/C, dash gauges, and any real efforts to make the car whole again as a real driver. Which is okay, but to get all the electronics right does require extra time and expense over a junkyard swap and burnouts. It really depends on what your goals are as to what you will gain out of this build thread.

All parts to make this conversion will be listed with sources and prices. Links provided to manufactures of custom parts and honest reviews of what works and what does not.

Other sites and places are dedicated to LS engine building and transmission selection. I will not bore you with drivetrain details unless someone asks. Basically it is a 5.3 truck LS engine with LS7 cam mated to a hydraulic Gen4 T5 transmission. The length and dimensions are very similar to that of a T56 and installation is basically the same. I know I have a mutant setup, it should work for me, but choose as you feel fit for your needs.

Basics:
- 2003 Silverado 5.3 engine modified with LS7 cam and supporting upgrades
- Gen4 T5 manual transmission - built up properly
- Hot Rod Works adapter plate
- SBC Truck bellhousing
- Speedway GM Hydraulic TO bearing
- 940T clutch and pedal set
- 940T Clutch Master Cylinder (M12x1.0 output)
- STS LS conversion mounts

960 engine harness will be modified to use:
- temperature sensor
- starter signal
- voltage regulation
- oil pressure gauge
- coolant temperature gauge
- power functions to control the LS ECU

ECU will be programmed by LT1SWAP.com. You can choose your functions depending on the way you pin out the loom. I plan on DBW throttle control and using the Fuel Composition Sensor for E85. Spreadsheet to follow on that detail. Note that once the car is up and running, a proper tune will need performed on the engine to optimize power and fueling.

The tunnel was pounded out per JTR 740 specifications. See their website for the PDF download... Bring a sledgehammer and move the metal quickly. Really, you will be there all day with a 3lb mini sledge.
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1971 Chevy C-10 w 5.3 LS (LS2 cam) & GM T5 trans
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Old 05-15-2018, 07:41 PM   #2
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Initial walk around after tearout.

https://youtu.be/ikW_HnJ00MA

Drivetrain quick walk through.

https://youtu.be/TDxiKeW2eGw

Last edited by Pillow; 05-15-2018 at 07:51 PM..
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Old 05-15-2018, 10:48 PM   #3
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STS Machine LS swap mounts review...
https://youtu.be/LaFk0OQgVvI

Quality kit overall, but the description is 100% wrong. Many people have called BS on this before and they were right.

Plan on LS1 or LS6 (read low) intake manifold with matching throttle body.
Also you will need an alternator and power steering pump relocation bracket kit. I just purchased the ICT Billet kit as it will relocate the truck accessories without having to purchase LS1 specific parts.
Add to this you will need a LS1 water pump and standoff spacers. Again I purchased ICT Billet spacers and an AC Delco water pump.

I had an LS1 intake and TB on hand #hoarder and swapped it in. The hood will close properly with this setup. The truck DBW TB is too high. A Truck DBC will fit, but not the direction I was going. Oh yeah, the LS1 TB wiring is different, IDK what I am going to do there yet.

So for an extra ~$400 you can close the hood and not have to cut a hole in it.

Next up, headers. The C5 Z06 or trunk exhaust manifolds do not fit. More to come there.
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Old 05-16-2018, 11:16 AM   #4
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Accessory drive part numbers from ICT Billet:

Item # Description Qty
551778 LS Truck Saginaw Power Steering Pump & Alternator Bracket Kit LSX LQ4 5.3L 6.0L 1
551445 LS Truck Block - Drill Template 1
551690-71 (LS1 Camaro to Truck) Water Pump Spacer .7" Adapter Swap kit LSX LS LS2 LQ4 GTO 1

and

ACDelco 252-846 Professional Water Pump Kit
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Old 05-16-2018, 06:36 PM   #5
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I just purchased a set of new take-off LS3 exhaust manifolds. Lets see if those fit.... Wait for it... Wait for it... Seriously probably a week delay at this point.
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Old 05-20-2018, 08:35 AM   #6
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A friend of mine designed and sells LS mounts for 700/900, he said there is no way to get the LS low enough in the chassis for a truck manifold and accessories to clear the hood. His quick and dirty solution was to cut out the center of the hood and make it into a cowl hood. Obviously not a solution for everyone.
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Old 05-20-2018, 05:34 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pillow View Post
I just purchased a set of new take-off LS3 exhaust manifolds. Lets see if those fit.... Wait for it... Wait for it... Seriously probably a week delay at this point.
The versions that come on a new crate LS3 (Camaro style) won't fit in a 240; you'll give us the verdict on the 900....
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Old 05-30-2018, 01:33 PM   #8
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Updates and depression.

Some of the parts for the Alt and PS pump relocation have come in, but I need a different idler pulley for the F body water pump and alternator. Good news is that the water pump and PS pump are in... Everything else is a PITA money pit.

The 2010+ Camaro SS exhaust manifolds did not fit as they poke out into the frame rails. I am on the lookout for a C6 corvette setup now. More time and expense.

Again be patient and eventually this will become a really good how-to with part numbers! And a depressing speadsheet with costs!
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Old 06-03-2018, 05:12 PM   #9
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Rambletron over F Body pulleys and fitment. Pardon the slow ramble, I just wasn't on the speaking coherently train that day.
https://youtu.be/sQPzvnt_oBA

Good news is that the pulleys are done. Belt K060680 has been ordered.
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Old 06-03-2018, 06:38 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pillow View Post
Belt K060680 has been ordered.
Good for you. I bought 6 belts from O'Reilly's before I got the right one. Turns out accurately measuring for that was tougher than I thought... They don't mind the returns though.
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Old 06-18-2018, 12:56 PM   #11
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Ok, I finally have the exhaust setup.

Passenger Side: LS3 crate style with center dump.

Drivers Side: Block Hugger header - Flowtech 11706FLT
https://www.jegs.com/i/Flowtech/387/11706/10002/-1
Very well made! I am impressed.

Now I need to pull the motor for some more fabrication work.
- Beat up firewall some more.
- Fuel lines.
- Throttle cable hole for Lokar cable. The stock Volvo is too big with the rubber grommet.

Progress, slow and steady
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Old 06-25-2018, 07:05 PM   #12
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A couple of quick notes based on my experience, if it helps.

Throttle cable hole--you can use some cut silicone rubber in between properly sized 1" fender washers, like stainless, sandwiched.

Look up CSF 2718 radiator on Autoplicity.com, if this fits in 96X, it's a decent cheap 2 row all-metal drop-in radiator. Works for my L33 even in the summer.

There's a temperature sensor that you can plug into one of the head spots, and wire into stock 9XX harness to give temp gauge.

What else...

ECU can obviously drive the hi/lo relay of the stock 96X fan, but the fan might have to be adapted to fit w/ the V8 accessory drive.. ECU should be able to take the A/C request from the 96X harness but I haven't quite gotten there yet myself. Not sure if the tach output for the ECU will need to be modded, on mine the 94X was 4 cylinder which matched the GM ECU output, so just plugged it up no problem. 96X should hopefully have VSS in the diff, so no need to modify that. HTH, if you were needing any.
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Old 06-26-2018, 03:08 PM   #13
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Slooow, but getting there. TY RallyDallas! I may hit you up where I get stuck.

I'm tearing into the 960 engine wiring harness now. I have the Green book (off Ebay used) plus this: http://www.autoelectric.ru/auto/volv...993/960-93.htm

But, yes, the way I see it with proper wiring the dash and all accessory functions should be ok or have a work around between the LS and 960 harness. It is just slow going. FWIW the ECU is unlocked and LS harness are ready for the swap per: http://lt1swap.com/wiringharness.htm

More to come in video, it has been so wet here lately that outside production came to a halt!
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Old 06-26-2018, 03:25 PM   #14
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*
too much talk with no pictures
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Don’t bother, I would literally rather throw them away than give you the pleasure. I will never sell to you.
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Old 07-10-2018, 05:10 PM   #15
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SLOW progress. #WorldCup

Engine is back out to make more dents in the firewall. With the truck bellhousing you need a TH400 hole for the motor to sit back enough to clear the fan and allow the shifter to line up.

Fuel pump is out... The replacement of course did not work as the filter did not match the pump. KIT means this ish should match and work!
I'm ordering a 9-201-1000 - DeatschWerks Universal In-Tank Fuel Pump as it has good reviews here on TB. Walbro fakes scare me as I want something that I know is real and works.
http://deatschwerks.rpmware.com/deat.../i-527436.aspx

Bits for the clutch pedal are ordered. The pedal cluster should be swapped shortly once said parts arrive.

Fuel lines will be swapped out as well. I'll post a video on that once under way.

A good 960 swap story... Of course they blow through all the details like its nothing. Nice overview but does not chronicle the real swap details. I was let down to see they did not integrate the dash wiring. I found that lazy considering the level of effort put into the other parts.
http://drivewerks.co/?s=volvo
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Old 07-10-2018, 05:47 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pillow View Post
STS Machine LS swap mounts review...
https://youtu.be/LaFk0OQgVvI

Quality kit overall, but the description is 100% wrong. Many people have called BS on this before and they were right.
SNIP
What are the isolators are mounted to? Did you cut down the tops of the stock 960 mounts? Or...?

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Old 07-10-2018, 06:17 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rallydallas View Post
What are the isolators are mounted to? Did you cut down the tops of the stock 960 mounts? Or...?

The bases are 960 as they lay flat on the perches. The Redblock mounts are at an angle and will not work for the application.

I am using the STS kit which uses the BMW 3 series engine isolators on top of the 960 bases. The BMW isolators also give an advantage as they can rotate to adjust the engine forward or back by twisting them as the bolts are offset like a camber adjustment bolt.

Again the STS kits sits very high and honestly I think a truck oil pan would fit just fine. But you are forced to change to a F body low profile intake manifold (LS1 LS6) and F body accessories.

The kit is very nice overall, but the description on fitment is dead wrong.

PM me your number and I can text some pictures your way.
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Old 07-11-2018, 10:42 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pillow View Post
The bases are 960 as they lay flat on the perches. The Redblock mounts are at an angle and will not work for the application.

I am using the STS kit which uses the BMW 3 series engine isolators on top of the 960 bases. The BMW isolators also give an advantage as they can rotate to adjust the engine forward or back by twisting them as the bolts are offset like a camber adjustment bolt.

Again the STS kits sits very high and honestly I think a truck oil pan would fit just fine. But you are forced to change to a F body low profile intake manifold (LS1 LS6) and F body accessories.

The kit is very nice overall, but the description on fitment is dead wrong.

PM me your number and I can text some pictures your way.
Oh, I see. I found the wrong picture (see attached.) What you're saying makes sense; sorry for my confusion. I'm guessing 94X cars can use the same mounts (I custom made mine.)
Attached Images
File Type: jpg pic.jpg (25.4 KB, 68 views)
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Old 07-11-2018, 01:39 PM   #19
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You had it right for a 960 in the #16 post graphic. The 960 mounts can bolt right into any 7/9. Effectively replacing the angled B230 engine mounts.
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