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Thread: So it begins.......

  1. #1
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    So it begins.......

    I'd like to introduce myself, My name is Brent and I've secretly lurked on this site for almost a year. I've owned Camaros most of my life and my last car was a heavily modded C6 so I guess it was only a matter of time before I stumbled across the GTM. I read several build threads and watched fast things videos logs out of curiosity, which grew into a uncontrollable desire to build one myself ,mixed with a healthy fear of the huge task at hand. Ignoring Friends and wife planting seeds of doubt " do you know how to wire a car from the ground up", " have you ever done any body work", " do you know what you're doing"? Well the answer to all these questions are no, but I bought the car anyway haha. I've worked on cars my whole life being a gear head but truth be told most of the work was minor repairs and bolt ons. This forum and its appetite to help each other out is literally what gave me the confidence to build my own super car, but first things first, where do you build a car like this? In the same garage you share a mini van and a toy armada of pink scooters, bikes and trikes from 3 little girls? No, this project calls for a special place, a sanctuary of testosterone and solitude. So my thread begins with this, the build....... Not the car build, not yet...... The build before that, the garage build. Luckily for you guys I've already finished it so you don't really have to see updates of a slow weekend garage build.

  2. #2
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    Of course there's a tree in the middle of where the city tells me I need to build it.



    Last edited by tucker298; 12-22-2015 at 01:09 PM.

  3. #3
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    Making progress





    Last edited by tucker298; 12-22-2015 at 01:14 PM.

  4. #4
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    Red face

    My wife calls it my YouTube garage because I've never built something of this scale but I had no issues each step of the way thanks to YouTube videos







    Last edited by tucker298; 12-22-2015 at 01:15 PM.

  5. #5
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    She's home



    Last edited by tucker298; 12-22-2015 at 01:06 PM.

  6. #6
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    Tucker,

    Welcome to the GTM community! Indeed it is a great group of folks. Always there to help. Congratulations on the garage .... I waited until I was two years into my GTM build before I built a new garage. It was easier to do bodywork and painting in a stand-alone garage since my wife can detect dust and solvent smells from three miles away. Good luck on the build!

    -Michael

    GTM #327 - Completed November 2013. Lots of cool add-ons from Shane, Crash, Ted, Thomas, and Mike.
    Not-up-to-date-build-site: http://rumrunnergtm.weebly.com

  7. #7
    Senior Member Presto51's Avatar
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    Welcome Tucker,

    Yes we are all here to help. With the combined knowledge from the members you will get-er-done. Just don't be a stranger and keep the updates coming with pictures and video.

    What's your build plan?

    Ron
    "May you be in heaven a full half hour before the Devil knows you're dead"

  8. #8
    Congrats, love your GTM's new home. Good luck with the build. The harder it is, the bigger the pay off.

  9. #9
    Welcome to the forum and congratulations on your new build.
    Doug
    Built FFR5196 MKII in 2003, 427w
    Building FFR0058HR, Edlebrock 347-AOD

  10. #10
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    So the car came with an LS1 mated to a freshly rebuilt G50.03 which I'm sure is plenty fast for a 2,300 lb car but you only get one chance to build your dream car and I came across a slightly used LS3 and pulled the trigger on before doing much research on here. Now I'm in need of a new wiring harness, PCM and throttle body. There's probably more things that I'm not thinking of right off the bat but in the long term it's what I truly wanted so I'll gladly deal with the swap. Besides the motor accessories I'm tracking a couple of other minor issues through searching the forum, please let me know if I'm missing something.

    An LS1 water pump needs to be used
    A slight modification on one of the motor mount brackets needs to be done
    The valley cover needs modding to turn the intake around
    It's my understanding that the stock oil pan can be used and is being done by a current member even though it's close
    I'm using stock exhaust manifolds so I'll be using stock motor mounts

    What am I missing? Or misunderstanding?

    Thanks so much for your help

    Last edited by tucker298; 12-22-2015 at 01:04 PM.

  11. #11
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    Ron,

    The build plan is the LS3 power plant with a mild cam, mated withe the G50.03 to complete the power train. The electronics will be run completely by an infinity box hooked to an iPad. The removable iPad will control the windows, Ac and music etc. I know I want to get a cable linkage, some door poppers and a few things from crash as well but the LS3 and iPad controlled car were my two must haves. im very interested in lukin4troubles digital dash system he just released but even though I have a rough over all plan I'm just focused on getting the LS3 fired up. When I think too far down the road I get overwhelmed ha. What I really need is for work to keep me home long enough to get some momentum going on the project! I'm stationed at Ft Bragg NC so the units there tend to deploy fairly often.

  12. #12
    Brent,
    Congratulations on starting your build.
    Looks like you are off to a great start with plenty of room to lay out your project.
    Cheers,
    Dave

    GTM # 294 Build Start Date 10/12/2009,
    2000 C5 Donor, LS-1 Twin Turbo, AC/Heat, G50-20.02 6 speed, Brandwood Cable shifter
    Build site. http://s679.photobucket.com/albums/vv153/dfraser/

  13. #13
    Welcome! Gotta say, I love the man-cave motif! Molon Labe!

    Sounds like you have a plan for a very nice GTM in the end. Good luck!
    Shane Vacek
    VRaptor SpeedWorks, LLC
    www.vraptorspeedworks.com
    Turn-key GTM, SL-C & Ultima GTR Built to Your Specs!
    Offering a full line of GTM Upgrades and Custom Parts

  14. #14
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    And this is how all projects go! So I was happy with just putting in the LS3, my friend shames me into doing at least a cam swap, which is turning into a cam, some head work and a ported intake AND THATS IT! ��

    I'll be waiting on my laundry list of parts to come in now,
    LS3 custom harness, PCM and MAF from spear tech
    Brian Tooley stage 2 cam kit
    Brandwood cable shifter
    LS1 water pump

    And the heads to get done

  15. #15
    Tucker,
    I come to Fayetteville all the time. Next time I could through I would love to see the car. I'll let you know next time I a, in town.

    Sean

  16. #16
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    Sean,

    Absolutely! I live on the southern pines side of Bragg. Next time you come through I'd love to show the project off to you.

  17. #17
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    Sorry I haven't updated my post in awhile, I knew as soon as I started this project I would get a call to deploy and that's exactly what happened lol but I'm back now and I can't wait to get this thing fired up! But first I need some parts and I have some questions about my wiring harness and was hoping you guys could shed some light on it for me, how long of a tail do I need for the harness? And when it comes to "emissions equipment removal" what do I need romoved? Thanks for the help! Below is the email from spear tech so you can see exactly what he asked from me

    Hi Brent,

    Yes, the E38 would be the preferred ECM for your setup. We are running around 2 weeks on lead time at the moment.

    On the GTM's we usually build the harness for a reverse mounted intake manifold, so let me know if that's what you are planning too.

    We can provide the harness only for $950 or as a package including the ECM, throttle pedal, MAF sensor with tube, and front O2 sensors.

    Here's an overview of what we offer:

    This package was specifically developed for the LS2/LS3/LS7 crate engines with the 58X crankshaft sensor. The complete LSx/T56 custom stand alone wiring harness and computer package sells for $1495.00.

    The package includes the following:

    A new stand-alone LSx/T56 wiring harness. The harness includes a check engine light, diagnostic connector, fuel pump relay, fuse block, and labeled wires for easy hookup to the battery, ignition switch, and fuel pump. Wires are also included for tach, speed, electric fan relays, and A/C functions where applicable. These custom stand alone harnesses are built for full function, closed loop control, and designed for non-emissions use (no post-cat O2's, purge canister, or fuel tank evap interface). The standard length of our new harnesses is 3.5'. This length is measured from the back of the engine (where the harness forms a single trunk line), to the location of the ECM, and is typically designed for mounting the ECM inside the cabin area.


    The package comes with the GM E38 ECM fully programmed for your application including: VATS (vehicle anti-theft system) removal, emissions equipment removal (whatever you don’t need or are not using on your swap such as: catalytic converters, rear O2 sensors, fuel tank pressure, EVAP), torque management removal, etc.

    The reprogramming lets your engine run properly without the “check engine” light being on unless there is a problem with the engine that needs to be addressed.

    Since the LSx is an Electronic Throttle Control (ETC) engine, the electronic pedal is also included in the package.

    As with all Speartech packages our systems can be serviced with any late model diagnostic equipment designed for GM vehicles.

    Options available:

    Sensor package (includes correct front O2 sensors and MAF sensor for one-stop shopping): $400.00

    Emissions package (wiring for rear O2 sensors and charcoal canister control): $100.00


    All wiring harnesses and PCM's are fully tested on a running engine/transmission test stand at our facility before shipping.

    Let me know if you have any questions.

    Good luck and stay safe wherever you are deployed!

    Thanks,



    John
    Speartech Fuel Injection Systems, Inc.
    3574 E. State Road 236
    Anderson, Indiana 46017
    (765) 378-4908
    (765) 378-4981 (FAX)
    www.speartech.com

  18. #18
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    No input from anyone?

  19. #19
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    Brent,

    The guys at Speartech know what they are doing. I believe they have built several harnesses for GTMs.

    If you plan on mounting the ECM in the "normal" GTM location (passenger side engine bay) then 3.5' should be plenty long. You definitely want it set up for a reversed intake manifold. I'd also get the sensor package at minimum, since you'll need the front O2 sensors and MAF no matter what.

    As for the emissions control equipment, many GTMs (including mine) are registered as exempt from emissions regulations. It really depends on what state you live in and how you register the vehicle. Since I didn't need to pass emissions in Maryland, I don't have typical emissions control parts in my setup (no rear O2 sensors, no purge canister, no evap control). I still run catalytic converters, though I don't have to. I suspect most GTM owners delete the emission equipment as well.

    You may want to compare prices for the harness/ECM/sensors with Shaun Carter at SMC Performance. Shaun did the harness for my GTM and provided all the parts and help when I needed it.

    http://www.smcperformance.com

    Hope that helps. Any questions, PM me.

    -Michael

    GTM #327, Completed November 2013. Not-up-to-date build site: http://rumrunnergtm.weebly.com/

  20. #20
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    Appreciate the info! That's what I thought, but I just wanted to make sure before I pulled the trigger on a several thousand dollar purchase, and I plan on registering it as a kit car here in NC and that means I am emmisions exempt. (According to the dmv website)

  21. #21
    Senior Member VD2021's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tucker298 View Post
    Ron,

    The build plan is the LS3 power plant with a mild cam, mated withe the G50.03 to complete the power train. The electronics will be run completely by an infinity box hooked to an iPad. The removable iPad will control the windows, Ac and music etc. I know I want to get a cable linkage, some door poppers and a few things from crash as well but the LS3 and iPad controlled car were my two must haves. im very interested in lukin4troubles digital dash system he just released but even though I have a rough over all plan I'm just focused on getting the LS3 fired up. When I think too far down the road I get overwhelmed ha. What I really need is for work to keep me home long enough to get some momentum going on the project! I'm stationed at Ft Bragg NC so the units there tend to deploy fairly often.
    Congrats and I here you.

    I've been off active duty since 2010, but my current job has called for many, many TDYs and long days lately.
    R/s
    Vidal
    CURRENT STATUS: Interior Rework and Bodywork.
    GenII GTM #331. Delivered (23/9/10)
    BUILD LOG AND WEBSITE:
    http://gtmbuild.weebly.com/ .

  22. #22
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    Hey Vidal, I'm actually from central Florida, born and raised. Even served in the Florida National Guard before going active. Grew up in Sanford, my wife's family still lives there and we visit about twice a year, will probably come down thanksgiving or Christmas, would love to see your car and pick your brain about the build process!

    Speaking of the build process, I ordered up some parts, a Brian Tooley stage II cam, the Speartech wiring harness with computer and MAF and the header tank kit/heater bypass valve. Looking to get this project rollingx
    Last edited by tucker298; 11-12-2015 at 02:30 PM.

  23. #23
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    So I'm taking some time in between putting up Christmas lights to sneak into the garag and pull the heads off so I can drop them off at the machine shop then swap the cams so I can finally get to putting her back together! also need to get that sensor plugged so I can get the manifold turned around and do a little more research to make sure I know what it takes to get this LS3 to work.







    Last edited by tucker298; 12-22-2015 at 01:19 PM.

  24. #24
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    Brent,

    I noticed you have the gold-blade throttle body on your engine. I found out the hard way that the GMPP crate-engine ECU requires the silver-blade version. Here's the link to my experience:

    http://www.ffcars.com/forums/42-fact...-not-gold.html


    Good Luck!

    -Michael

  25. #25
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    Thanks ALOT for the heads up!

  26. #26
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    The packages keep on rolling in!



    Last edited by tucker298; 12-22-2015 at 01:01 PM.

  27. #27
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    Got the heads back from the machine, had them put the springs in, a 3 angle valve job and freshen them up. They look great and hopefully with the Brian Tooley cam ill have a very tame 500 hp car or close to it ( ironic statement of the day, tame 500 hp 2350 lb car) just got done pulling everything off and cleaning off the block of the residue, it's ready to go back together tomorrow night! Can't wait to at least get the motor together and back in the car so I can clean and reorganize my garage. The welding of the oil valley cover came out good, first time welding pot metal.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Last edited by tucker298; 12-20-2015 at 05:43 PM.

  28. #28
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    Motor is back together! ...... Almost, need to put some of the accessories on and get the belt on. BUT for sneaking in and out of the garage in between holiday parties and events I'm just glad to have tangible evidence of progress ha

    FYI The MLS head gaskets are sharp! Although I'm sure everyone already knew that lol went to wipe out the cylinder with the gasket on and it cut my knuckle wide open and it stayed open ..... I will now add band aids to the build list lol
    Last edited by tucker298; 12-22-2015 at 12:59 PM.

  29. #29
    If you're using Band Aids you're doing it wrong! Paper towel and duct tape work much better!
    www.myraceshop.com

    GTM solution kits
    Corvette and Race parts

  30. #30
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    Well she's ready to drop in, I know I'll have to take some of those accessories off to drop it in but I want to fit them to make sure everything went on ok and I'm glad I did! One of the holes for the alternator bracket didn't quite line up so I had to open that up a bit and the the idler pulley was about a 1/4 in too far out and had to cut the spacer down to fix that. Soooo I think I'm finally ready to drop this things in! Will be nice just to free up all the space around the car the engine, engine stand and the engine hoist take up.



    Last edited by tucker298; 12-22-2015 at 12:55 PM.

  31. #31
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    The motor is finally in! I'm alittle surprised at how hard it was being I was simply dropping a motor into a bare frame .....if I could do it over again, I would do it with the water pump removed. That would've cleared a lot of space and I ended up having to remove it anyway to move the motor forward enough to get the compressor bolts in. When I removed it, in about 1min with the belt on it, I wondered to myself why I left it on to begin with. So I made it more difficult than it had to be. I was excited though at how easy the custom wiring harnes went on. all the connectors were labeled and I was feeling like a pro knowing where everything was and going so fast until.......the alternator sensor was too short! Sooo I'll have to extend that tomorrow, all in all it was a good day and I'm motivated again after seeing the motor in!










  32. #32
    Excellent Pictures ...keep em coming.

  33. #33
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    Soooo par for the course so far..... I was excited about keeping my momentum going into the garage today and installing the transmission! Buuuuut as I started to collect my thoughts I looked around for the first thing to come to mind and that was the pilot bearing, well I bought the car from another forum member who had just started the car but he had put an LS1 in the car which I pulled out and sold...... And probably with the pilot bearing still attached. Not that I would re use it but had I seen it I would've remembered to order one to replace it! So anyway I called KEP today and ordered one (26 dollars) at what I thought was a great price for a custom made piece. So I'll wait till the part gets in.

  34. #34
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    So I dropped the motor in before I left for Florida and now now that I'm back ( and have the pilot bearing) I couldn't wait to put the transaxle in. The wife even came out to help me move the transaxle around and help get it in place! I was a little nervous about the clutch fork part of the install but I just taped it up and it stayed in place ......the second time ..... And the install actually went pretty smooth






    I ordered a cable system that should get here next week so I'll use this week to do a few of the smaller things like buttoning up the pcv system and the heater bypass valve system. Then I'll start to wrap my head around the fuel system and the Evap part of it. I'm slowly getting closer to firing her up! I can't wait.

  35. #35
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    Shane's brackets came in today! So I was able to quickly get my gas pedal and ECU put in the car, will use his shift mounting bracket when my cables come in and use the ISIS (infinity box ) cell mounts when I get around to electrical. Theses fixes are so simple but would be so hard for me to figure out and make on my own lol so thanks for supplying these products Vraptor speedworks!

    The other photo is just me showing off my new color coordinated shop items lol

  36. #36
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    Still waiting on my shift cables to come in, went ahead and ordered the infinity box set up for the car to include: the 20 circuit kit, in motion, battery reserve, In touch net,in dash max and I wanted to order the in vironment module to control the vintage air and he wanted to know if it was a gen 4 vintage air. I'm not home so I couldn't go into the garage and see if it's labeled right on it so hopefully it is. If it's not easily labeled gen 4 kit, how will I be able to tell what generation ac kit I have?

    Also I think I read that people were going with a Toyota Corolla shifter to use with the cable system? If so what years will work so I can get that ordered up, or what shifters are you guys using ?

  37. #37
    Keep up the posting. I'm really enjoying seeing you make progress on your car.

    I bought my GTM right before Christmas, and I still haven't had the opportunity to get to working on it.

  38. #38
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    Thanks Aceflo, I'm out of town this weekend but I'm really hoping this month and February are going to be big months for progress for the go kart phase!

  39. #39
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    Are you looking for a picture filled update on a pretty easy step that most people can figure out on their own? Lol well look no further!

    My CAI came in this week and I really wanted to get it in the car so I could install the MAF sensor and check off that all the connectors are connected from my wiring harness and get the fresh air line hooked up so I can cross off the PCV system on my list.

    First thing I did was hook up the first few pieces, thanks to rum runner, I knew I had to make a bracket to hold up the weight of the CAI system and where to mount it but I didn't know exactly I was going to do, all in all pretty simple, I just bought a 3/4 " aluminum strip of metal and used very simple tools to get it done



    After choosing which bolt I was going to use to run the bracket off of I needed to know roughly how long my piece of metal needed to be, so I used this rubber hose to figure that out and added a couple inches because I could always trim it



    Then I just measured how far away the bolt was from the tubing so I knew where to make my next bend to start going around the tubing, I just used two pliers for that bend



    Then using some clamps I just bent the metal strip around the tubing



    When I completed the bend all the way around the tubing I made one more bend in the strip and drilled a hole through both layers so I could run a bolt through to clamp the bracket down on the tubing

    Last edited by tucker298; 01-16-2016 at 11:44 PM.

  40. #40
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    Now I just needed to remove the MAF sensor from the tube that speartech sent me


    I cut it out in a small square



    After finding the right place on my new CAI to install the MAF sensor I cut out a slightly smaller square



    I then put JB weld under the larger square piece ( MAF sensor) and set it on top of the smaller square I just cut out, ensuring their was a good seal all the way around





    Then with the "vacuum kit" ( PCV intake) from spectre I just drilled a hole on the under side, put the rubber grommet in and place the plastics piece in it and connected it to the intake on the valve cover for the fresh air portion of the PCV system, all in all it was a fun afternoon with the car, got to check a couple things off the list and better yet it LOOKS like I got something accomplished lol



    Little man approves

    Last edited by tucker298; 01-17-2016 at 12:01 AM.

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