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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Mission Viejo, CA
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    Country Flag: United States

    1973 Pontiac Grand Am LS7 Swap

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    This is a new thread I am starting to document my LS7 swap into my PT 1973 Pontiac Grand Am.

    Part of the build includes re-doing the entire frame. When I originally restored the car, I had done a body off. Frame powder coated and all the rest that goes with it. Unfortunately after that I was always chasing a mild lean towards the driver side. Had a local frame shop check it, and found it to be lower on that side?? Hard to figure why considering the I am the second owner since 1989 and the original owner was 80 years old when he sold it to me. The car never had the lean before I restored it. As luck would have it, I located a 1973 LeMans at a local specialty wrecking yard a few months ago. I decided the best way to approach this was to get the other frame and swap everything over. Last week I pulled it all apart. It took 3.5 hours and none of the bolts stripped or were rusted solid. I know.....we California guys are spoiled. Dont hate me. I decided to take the frame to Rob MacGregor at No Limit Engineering in San Bernardino, Ca. The plan is to have Rob re-weld all the factory welds, box the entire frame, add cross bracing in critical areas, and true the frame. I will powder coat the frame medium/dark gunmetal grey metallic when it's finished. Rob told me they took preliminary measurement of the frame and it was only 1/8 out which he said was very good compared to others he has worked on. He pointed out all of the areas of the frame that need to be improved. He said all of the factory welds on this particular frame were better than most, but will all be re-welded. It would be nice to step up to the plate and buy a custom frame, but I just dont have that kind of money, so this is the best alternative. I did tell him I want to go to a rear coil over set up. I will be bringing him the rear diff next week in order for him to mount it to the frame to get everything squared up for the coil set up. Since I already have a complete Global West front and rear suspension on the car, I will be swapping those parts back to the new frame. ERL called me today. The short block is being machined now, and will be finished by the end of next week. As soon as I know what the piston to deck height is, I am ordering the heads in order to get the compression ratio between 11-11.5:1. I had initially intended on ordering WCCH Brodix castings, but I have recently went to Dr. J's Performance and spoke with Bryce regarding his Air Wolf CNC ported heads. They are very impressive. I have not decided yet which ones I will get. I received the cam from Geoff at EPS and the MAST oil pan. Shaun at SMC Performance has supplied me with a lot of parts as well. The intake is a factory LS7 ported by LS2 Portworks. The cam specs are .633/.640 lift, 226/242 @.050 on a 115+3 LSA. I inserted a picture of some of the parts I have so far. I will continue to post the entire build as it progresses. Thanks.
    1973 Hurst Edition Pontiac Grand Am: 430 CI of ERL built LS7, Tremec Magnum T-56 6-speed, Global West / Speedtech Suspension, Custom rear coil-over suspension, QA1 double adjustable shocks, Wilwood 6/4 piston disc brakes, Modulare C1 19" concave wheels. Shooting for 625 HP and 20 MPG!


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    2,380
    Country Flag: United States
    I knew it! When I saw your new engine go up for sale I figured this was going to become a badazz LS project.

    Planning on duplicating this build on the PY forum? Hope you're wearing armor-plated underwear. LOL!

    This thing is going to be awesome. Good luck.

    EDIT: See you already did start it on PY, and with positive feedback too. Pontiac crowd must be warming up to these swaps finally.
    Red Forman: "The Mustang's front end is problematic; get yourself a Firebird."

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Posts
    661
    Country Flag: United States
    fvgbhnj

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Birmingham, AL
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    This is gonna be awesome. Keep us posted on the progress.
    Stephen

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Mission Viejo, CA
    Posts
    610
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    Yeah, I had to sell off all of the Pontiac engine parts in order to finance this. Thanks for the feedback. I am pretty excited about this. The PY guys can be brutal, so we will see. I will be posting all the build on PY and Pro-Touring as well. Today the rear diff comes out. Thanks.

    Sean
    1973 Hurst Edition Pontiac Grand Am: 430 CI of ERL built LS7, Tremec Magnum T-56 6-speed, Global West / Speedtech Suspension, Custom rear coil-over suspension, QA1 double adjustable shocks, Wilwood 6/4 piston disc brakes, Modulare C1 19" concave wheels. Shooting for 625 HP and 20 MPG!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
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    1,607
    Country Flag: United States
    Hey Sean - Badazz for sure. I'm curious how you picked your cam before you selected heads? Wouldn't flow affect your decision? The cam you have is a little beefier than the one I'm putting in my LS7, although I'm hunting torque. Are you running a 1.8 or 1.7 rocker ratio?

    Edit - Richard @ WCCH would be my choice!
    Ron in SoCal
    69 Camaro in progress
    http://www.lateral-g.net/forums/showthread.php4?t=31246

    Used to be known as flash911

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Mission Viejo, CA
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    610
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    Ron,
    I know that I will be running ported LS7 heads regardless of which ones I pick, but I knew the flow numbers were going to be in the 375-390 range either way. The only reason I have not bought them is that I am still waiting for the piston to deck height clearance values so that I can set up the chamber size correctly for the CR I want. I am running the standard 1.8 LS7 rockers on this set up.
    1973 Hurst Edition Pontiac Grand Am: 430 CI of ERL built LS7, Tremec Magnum T-56 6-speed, Global West / Speedtech Suspension, Custom rear coil-over suspension, QA1 double adjustable shocks, Wilwood 6/4 piston disc brakes, Modulare C1 19" concave wheels. Shooting for 625 HP and 20 MPG!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Mission Viejo, CA
    Posts
    610
    Country Flag: United States

    LS7 Swap Progress

    Well I decided to work on the car today. Here is the progress. The two dolly's really help when your doing it by yourself. Now it's off to the rear end shop to have them inspect everything. After that it goes to No Limit for the coil over mock up.Attachment 49970
    1973 Hurst Edition Pontiac Grand Am: 430 CI of ERL built LS7, Tremec Magnum T-56 6-speed, Global West / Speedtech Suspension, Custom rear coil-over suspension, QA1 double adjustable shocks, Wilwood 6/4 piston disc brakes, Modulare C1 19" concave wheels. Shooting for 625 HP and 20 MPG!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Posts
    58
    Country Flag: Canada
    this is going to be a great build! I had a 73 GTO that I build to duplicate the 73 SD 455 4spd ascot silver. it was a great car, but got bored of just showing it at car shows, sold it and am working on a pr-toured 69 Firebird with a 418 LS, after this am thinking of doing a 77 Can Am pro tour with an LS, I will be watching your build!
    Imran

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Mission Viejo, CA
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    610
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    Thanks Blackgoat.
    1973 Hurst Edition Pontiac Grand Am: 430 CI of ERL built LS7, Tremec Magnum T-56 6-speed, Global West / Speedtech Suspension, Custom rear coil-over suspension, QA1 double adjustable shocks, Wilwood 6/4 piston disc brakes, Modulare C1 19" concave wheels. Shooting for 625 HP and 20 MPG!

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Birmingham, AL
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    Do you have any pics before the tear down?
    Stephen

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Mission Viejo, CA
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    Attachment 50003Attachment 50002

    If you meant the whole car, here are two pictures.
    1973 Hurst Edition Pontiac Grand Am: 430 CI of ERL built LS7, Tremec Magnum T-56 6-speed, Global West / Speedtech Suspension, Custom rear coil-over suspension, QA1 double adjustable shocks, Wilwood 6/4 piston disc brakes, Modulare C1 19" concave wheels. Shooting for 625 HP and 20 MPG!

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Central NJ
    Posts
    794
    This is going to be awesome... I'll get my pen and paper ready for notes... Good Luck with the upgrade!

    -Sean

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Lombard, IL
    Posts
    545
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    Very cool.
    My sister had a really cool (and fast) triple black 73 Grand Am when I was in high school. I always like the lines of that car. Yours looks great.
    Can't wait to see your latest iteration come together.
    Dan
    1971 Chevelle Maliboo Convertible 496/4L80E
    1956 210 2 door Sedan 8-71 blown 468/T400

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Mission Viejo, CA
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    610
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    Thanks Sean....nice to see another '73-'77 A-body member taking interest. I like your Bad Buzz name. I need to think of a name for this project?? I'm open to ideas.
    1973 Hurst Edition Pontiac Grand Am: 430 CI of ERL built LS7, Tremec Magnum T-56 6-speed, Global West / Speedtech Suspension, Custom rear coil-over suspension, QA1 double adjustable shocks, Wilwood 6/4 piston disc brakes, Modulare C1 19" concave wheels. Shooting for 625 HP and 20 MPG!

  16. #16
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Austin, Tx.
    Posts
    1,539
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    VERY cool project!

    That car has an awesome looking grill/front end on it!
    Ray
    FEW FRILLS, just BIG CHILLS!!!
    1972 VW Bug (427LS/T56 Magnum/9"-3.70 gears)
    18"x10-1/2" (315/30/18) Front, 18x12" (335/30/18) Rear
    https://www.pro-touring.com/showthre...-Lady-Bug-quot

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Houston, TX
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    192
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    DUDE!!! My favorite ride of all time! I'm gonna be watching this for sure.
    Asa Walker
    Houston, TX

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Mission Viejo, CA
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    610
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    Cool guys. Thanks for the positive comments.
    1973 Hurst Edition Pontiac Grand Am: 430 CI of ERL built LS7, Tremec Magnum T-56 6-speed, Global West / Speedtech Suspension, Custom rear coil-over suspension, QA1 double adjustable shocks, Wilwood 6/4 piston disc brakes, Modulare C1 19" concave wheels. Shooting for 625 HP and 20 MPG!

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Sydney, Australia
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    1,896
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    Very nice...I love the 73 A body Pontiacs...great lines.
    Regards,
    Leigh

    Sydney, Australia
    1971 Firebird 455

    https://www.pro-touring.com/showthre...Project/page27

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Nashville/ Tampa
    Posts
    672
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    Interesting car. Honestly don't think I've ever seen one before.
    https://www.instagram.com/gen_v_lt1_chevelle/


    Do not buy anything from Frankie's Used Auto Parts. Ever.
    Chevelle ̶a̶l̶m̶o̶s̶t̶ ̶f̶i̶n̶i̶s̶h̶e̶d̶ L92/200-4r now Gen V LT1 and T56- https://ls1tech.com/forums/conversio...nvertible.html

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