"Tow Pig" build

clinebarger

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Oddly fascinated with this project - any updates?

How does one match parts together for something like this? (Lifters, heads, even gaskets, etc). I'm guessing the harness / brain box is a nightmare.

I get that there is a lot of skill involved - but is there a community of engine builders who share what works with what? (Genuine question from someone who can barely figure out a stock engine).

Intended usage & power/torque goals is a good place to start......The only engines I custom build are LSx engines & I'm very familiar with them.
For this one......
*Texas Speed & Performance put the stroker kit together for me & everything was perfect, I just told them how much dish I needed in the piston to obtain the 10:1 CR.
*Cylinder Heads choice was easy, I need low RPM torque production, Pretty big Chamber size to avoid having the pistons down in the hole thus ruining Quench. These 317's will probably run out of steam at @ 5,500 RPM, Which is fine for this build. If higher RPM is required......A set of CNC ported LS3 heads would be needed.
*Lifters.....Like I said, I've had great luck with LS7 lifters & were the best GM had to offer 'till the Bowtie lifters came out.
*I use OE GM head gaskets on all my builds, Mild to Wild!
*Camshaft selection is VERY important & will Make Or Break a build. Cam Motion helps me with that!

I build custom wiring harnesses & modify OE harnesses in house, I have all the GM Packard/Delphi Crimpers required for this., This particular build won't require as many modifications as one would think.......
*I'll start with a '03-'07 4.8L/5.3L/6.0L truck harness & remove all the 4L60E/4L80E transmission control circuits.
*I'll take the 8.1L/Allison 1000 Harness & separate the 2....Not difficult as they are almost separate from the factory.
*Will be using the factory 8.1L PCM & will be custom tuned on a chassis dyno to get the AFR dialed in & the base tune built. Then road tested & tweaked for roughly 500 miles. Then the trailer & Skid Steer will be hooked up to the truck for some HARD shake down runs to assure the engine doesn't Lean-Out or have any drivability problems.
*Transmission shift points will also be custom calibrated.....Normal & Tow Haul Modes.
 
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There are high horsepower engine builds all over the net. However, there are rather few low RPM, high torque severe service types of builds such as this. I personally find this much more interesting, and I am excited to learn more. Great thread!
 
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There are high horsepower engine builds all over the net. However, there are rather few low RPM, high torque severe service types of builds such as this. I personally find this much more interesting, and I am excited to learn more. Great thread!


Same here. For some reason I like the thought of a motor grunting it out constantly under heavy load. Like when TFL takes a truck up the Ike foot to the floor for 8 miles, for some reason that interests me more than someone running 1000hp for 1/4 mile.
 
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Same here. For some reason I like the thought of a motor grunting it out constantly under heavy load. Like when TFL takes a truck up the Ike foot to the floor for 8 miles, for some reason that interests me more than someone running 1000hp for 1/4 mile.
It is one of the reasons I took interest to the LS series of engines many years ago. Apparently, during development, they were run in high RPM, high load situations for days on end. Talk about "grunting it out"!

 
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Same here. For some reason I like the thought of a motor grunting it out constantly under heavy load. Like when TFL takes a truck up the Ike foot to the floor for 8 miles, for some reason that interests me more than someone running 1000hp for 1/4 mile.

They have done it once with an older truck , but I'd like to see it more with older trucks! I think it would be fun to ship mine out there and see how long it holds up towing a 10k trailer up that hill , foot to the floor at 4500 for 9 miles straight!

I'm willing to bet it would scatter parts everywhere.
 

clinebarger

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Updates.....

Got the Windage Tray, Pick-up Tube, Front & Rear Covers installed.....
*The Windage Tray has to be spaced down a little to clear the rods & counterweights of the 4" stroke crank, Which also requires some massaging of the Pick-up Tube hold downs to get in to sit level on the Oil Pump.
*Stock Gen III front & rear covers using alignment tools I machined myself.
*Gen IV oil pan, Which is a little deeper than a Gen III pan & allows a full 7 quart oil capacity, Will mark the dipstick accordingly. AFM relief valve removed & plugged with a 1/4" pipe plug.

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They have done it once with an older truck , but I'd like to see it more with older trucks! I think it would be fun to ship mine out there and see how long it holds up towing a 10k trailer up that hill , foot to the floor at 4500 for 9 miles straight!

I'm willing to bet it would scatter parts everywhere.

Naah. The 5.4 Modular will spin 4500 forever. Saw a V10 go 500,000+ in an F-550, and that was a repo truck...with 5.30 gears.
 
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Naah. The 5.4 Modular will spin 4500 forever. Saw a V10 go 500,000+ in an F-550, and that was a repo truck...with 5.30 gears.
They definitely like it! Mine has some piston slap but it gets whisper silent after a hard pull up a 14% grade towing my jeep at 4000+rpm for a minute or two.
 
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No sir, 5,500 is about fast as you can spin a Allison 1000. Cubic Inches gobble up Cam Duration.....But the LSA is pretty wide, It will have plenty of low end torque!

I don't agree with that statement. Low end torque is made by narrowing the LSA, not widening it. Choosing LSA for a towing mule should be made as narrow as possible while still maintaining idle quality and idle vacuum.

here are a couple examples



I'm not trying to knock your build at all because I have dreamed of making a towing beast of an engine myself. I saw that your cam has quite a bit of lift at .591. How many miles does this guy plan on putting on? I'm afraid you might be knocking on the door of valve train and valve spring durability in the long run with those kind of lift numbers.

Have you ever looked into BTR's truck cams? They are made for towing and low end torque. They have LSA's around 110.
 

clinebarger

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Those dyno's can't test down low, They start at what.....3500 RPM? And a chassis dyno might read low as 2500 RPM. Can't have this thing bucking against the torque converter. The 114 LSA cam in my Camaro makes a ton of low end torque & I can't imagine a 116 LSA being soggy.

There isn't many budget options with Allison 1000 gas torque converters, And you can imagine what a tight LSA would feel like against a 1600 RPM converter.

I'm running to of the line BTR springs & I believe lower RPM will allow them to live longer.
 
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Those dyno's can't test down low, They start at what.....3500 RPM? And a chassis dyno might read low as 2500 RPM. Can't have this thing bucking against the torque converter. The 114 LSA cam in my Camaro makes a ton of low end torque & I can't imagine a 116 LSA being soggy.

There isn't many budget options with Allison 1000 gas torque converters, And you can imagine what a tight LSA would feel like against a 1600 RPM converter.

I'm running to of the line BTR springs & I believe lower RPM will allow them to live longer.
That's definitely a good point about not wanting to have this thing buck down low, the 116 will definitely keep that in check and its probably better to err on the side of caution, just seemed a tad wide is all. Like anything spec'ing a cam is a big compromise, the wide lsa will make that thing want to sing up top where you don't want to be running with the allison.

Granted the engine in my camaro is a different platform but I run a 226/234 on a 108 LSA and with the M6 it does get a tad jerky at times at low rpm and light load, but surprisingly it will run smooth and not lug or buck at 1300 rpm in 6th gear.
 
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