LS550 Swap Parts + Project Progress

A lot of ground is covered in our latest Forum Build Thread update on the S550 Mustang LS V8 swap / race car project we’re calling #Trigger. The final engine and T56 Magnum XL are installed, the 2018 front conversion is complete, and much more.

We have used this salvage chassis 2015 GT to develop our 10th unique chassis LS swap. The #LS550 kit joins many different BMWs, 86/FRS/BRZ, 1st gen Mustang, 1st gen Camaro, and Miata LS swaps we have performed. We have been in the LS swap game since 2002 and have sold many hundreds of kits – triggering some purists from each model we have “saved”. But that’s ok, sometimes you have to break the rules to fix all the problems on a given chassis.

We weighed so many items in this Forum Build Thread update the International Bureau of Weights and Measures called us and said “slow down, you’re making us all look bad!” But that won’t stop us from sharing the tech and spreading the gospel that LIGHTER IS BETTER!

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Frankenstein 1995/2007 Subaru STI Swap – Updated After 6 Year Hiatus!

Long time readers of the Vorshlag forum will remember this FrankenSubie project, which we started documenting in 2009. A friend of the shop Paul bought this 1995 Impreza “L” FWD 2 door automatic back then. It was merged with a wrecked 2007 STI’s full AWD drivetrain swap. Then a built 2004 STi 2.5L turbo motor, custom flares, remote reservoir monotubes, big tires, custom interior mods (2007 dash, 1999 RS doors), and more.

Our last update on this Forum Build Thread was in 2014, when the car left Vorshlag’s North Plano shop (3 shops ago!) after we had fabricated some items and installed the coolers and oil plumbing to this GC. The latest update covers the work after it went to COBB Tuning Plano, then back to Vorshlag, then to Paul’s home garage for the next steps. It was “finished” enough to run at a few autocross / Pro Solo events in 2016-17, then went back under the knife for some updates before it would be finished enough for paint…

Some time passed and “life got in the way”, but in 2020 with the help of some friends, was resumed again, and we have documented the latest updates to the suspension (drop spindles and custom rear subframe), gutted the doors (partially), and more in this forum post. We will continue to push to make sure this lightweight, 2 door GC Subaru gets back on track and to an autocross course soon. Stay tuned for more, but you can read the “6 year catch up post” starting here.

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Project Update for 2016 Mustang #LS550 Swap

We have a huge forum build thread update (starting here) on our 2015 Mustang GT project we have dubbed #Trigger. This car is being built to develop an LS V8 + T56 Magnum XL swap kit as well as to continue testing we started 3 years ago on our 2018 GT “S550” chassis Mustang.

In this round of work we spend time removing items (and weighing them), replacing bent or broken items (and weighing them), and installing more race-worthy parts (and weighing them). Did we mention this build thread update has a lot of pictures of parts being weighed??

As we build up this gutted salvage titled wreck into a proper race car once again we are uncovering little tidbits of tech, tricks and tips we share along the way. We cover a subjects including: OEM vs full chassis rewire; all aspects of the braking system; lightening the interior and doors, subframes, & bumper beams; GT350 axles vs GT axles; S550 carbon fiber hood, trunk and doors; pedals, steering rack, firewall plates, and steering columns; and the roll bar and seat installs.

Last up is the most controversial subject of all – the BM LS V8 swap into a Ford chassis. We cover the development steps for the engine mounts, transmission crossmember, long tube headers, and driveshaft. You can read all of this with 100+ pictures starting here. Thanks for reading!

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’67 Mustang 427″ Track Rat Updates

We have made major progress on our customer’s 1967 Mustang coupe. It was already a track car, but now it is becoming a much faster, higher grip, and safer track weapon. We have updated the car to modern S197 Mustang front suspension and brakes, added 18×11″ wheels / 315mm tires, and more.

The addition of an FIA fuel cell adds safety, as does a full roll cage. The 427″ dry sump LS7 crate engine fits nicely underhood with the AJE tubular crossmember. All of this is shown in detail on the forum thread.

There is so much more that you can read in the latest 3 part forum build thread update – lots of pictures of the disassembly, mockup, design, and fabrication that is going into this 1967 Mustang. The same build thread is cross-posted on Vorshlag, Track Mustangs Online, Lateral-G, and S197forums. Enjoy!

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’69 Camaro Track Car Update

It has been a while since we updated the Forum Build Thread on this tube framed ’69 Camaro, but now that it is driving under its own power, it was time for a big “catch-up” update, which you can read here.

Wiring, plumbing, EFI harness and computer, interior panels, and the false floor panels were discussed in this round of updates – most of which happened in 2019.

If you have been following this build please take a chance and catch up with work starting here. We have much more work completed to share next time. Thanks for reading!

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New Project: Cadillac CTS-V Endurance Racer!

We brought a new customer project into the shop in late March and have already dug into a number of punch list items on this 2004 CTS-V endurance road race car. You can read all about it in this new Forum Build Thread.

We didn’t waste any time and yanked the worn out aluminum 5.3L LS V8 to be rebuilt and upgraded heavily at HorsePower Research, down the road from Vorshlag. The replacement engine will be bigger displacement, more reliable, and hopefully around double the output of the 5.3L.

We have also created a new tubular bumper beam, rolled radiator, and other custom work that should help make this more reliable, run cooler, and crash through crowds better! Read more about this Caddy starting here.

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Two Project Updates – AKA: New Reading Material!

As a large chunk of the planet is stuck in isolation, we decided to publish two forum build thread updates on two of our in-house projects – our #TeamVorshlag BMW E46 LS V8 swap project we are building for Endurance racing events -and- our GMT800 shop truck development thread.

These two projects couldn’t seem more different. One is a dedicated wheel to wheel race car build that will be run in 8-12-24 hour races. The other is our work horse truck that we use to haul parts around town. Complete opposites!

They do have a lot of things in common, however. They both: are around 20 years old, utilize custom 4 wheel disc brake brake setups, both have upgraded rear axles with limited slip differentials, are equipped with remote reservoir monotube dampers, and both have long tube headers making beautiful noises from their LS V8 engines!

Both forum posts have a lot of step-by-step pictures on dozens of projects within each build. Many challenges and solutions, like we always share.

So check these two build thread updates out, especially if you need something to keep your mind off other matters. We are writing more updates for a number of other project build threads – stay tuned, and stay safe!

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Coyote Swap into 2010 Mustang GT

Vorshlag has been working on another V8 swap in our shop – a Gen II Coyote V8 going into a 2010 Mustang. This car previously competed in NASA Spec Iron class, but the owner wanted more power to be able to run American Iron class, which has a higher horsepower limit. The 4.6 3V engine that came in the 2005-10 model Mustang GT isn’t exactly known for making easy power, so a Gen II Coyote crate motor was purchased along with a Tremec T56 Magnum XL.

Our annual “Wear your helmet to work day” picture was with this 2010 GT!

In this Forum Build Thread update we show the many steps needed to swap to this 2015-17 version of the 5.0L Coyote V8. In typical Vorshlag fashion we show weights of everything related to the powertrain, detailed pictures of the engine+trans install, the Ford Controls Pack wiring harness installation, brackets we needed to buy or build, accessory drives, motor mounts, clutch and hydraulic TOB installation, firewall clearance for the intake manifold, fire system repairs, and more.

In an effort to improve cooling and aero efficiency we “rolled the radiator”, taking the OEM-sized aluminum unit from straight up to a 19 degree roll. We show the steps from mockup, finding more clearance, custom mounting brackets, adding the fan, making radiator hoses, and more.

The last thing we talk about in this forum update are the CAI and exhaust header selection and installation. Together with a custom dyno tune we should be able to reach 450 whp, then with a restricted tune dial it back to the ~370 whp that this car will need for AI class racing. With a wheel/tire change and a new tune uploaded the car should be able to run in NASA ST2 competitively as well. Two classes are better than one!

In the next round of forum updates we will show other work that has been completed, such as an oil cooler, remote oil filter housing, ducted front grill, the 2011-14 “3 bolt” EPAS steering rack install into the 2 bolt crossmember, and much more. Stay tuned!

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Final 2019 #LS550 Forum Build Thread Update

We have one last round of updates to show on our newest shop project, the LS V8 swapped 2015 Mustang GT that has aptly been named #Trigger – for the instantaneous reaction some “brand purists” get when they see it. In this round we try to better explain why we wanted to tackle this swap, and how this totally fits in with the last 2 decades of Vorshlag history (we’ve been upsetting brand purists in our pursuit of economical race car builds and track records for a long, long time!) We also briefly recap our other 3 shop owned projects that are continuing into 2020.

The meat of this massive 4 part Forum Build Thread update goes over many aspects of the updates, upgrades, and weights of parts we have removed or installed in the last 4 weeks. It doesn’t seem like a lot of time, but we completed a large number of sub-tasks, like: the 2018+ front bumper cover end mock-up, front frame stub repair, and a surprise gift of parts that led to a front subframe and bumper beam replacement.

Another big round of work was completed out back after finding that the rear subframe that came with our car was both incorrectly installed and had all of the wrong brakes and axles. We upgraded every aspect of the rear subframe after adding our 4.09 geared / Auburn Pro equipped aluminum super 8.8″ diff housing, GT350 axles, vented GT rear brakes, and new #Whiteline poly diff and subframe mount bushings. The removal of the stock bushings was a *massive pain* but the new Whiteline bits went in beautifully.

Lots of interior bits were removed and weighed while the LS / T56 swap crossmember and LS swap long tube headers for this S550 Mustang chassis were designed, installed, and completed. We *almost* have the LS swap motor mounts done as well, just need another few days. All of the brake parts that were missing on this S550 chassis – including several upgrades – were installed in this round, like: the PP1 master cylinder, brake booster, pedal assembly, ABS block, rear GT rotors/calipers, Ford Racing hubs at all 4 corners, and more. Big progress!

In the last segment we talk about “total rewire” jobs on race cars and explain what we have planned for this car – and show potential weight differences just in wiring. You can read all of this starting here.

Thanks for coming along on this “build thread” journey in 2019 – see you in 2020! #ThanksForTheMemes

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Updates on our 86 / BRZ / FRS Development!

We have an update to our long running (since 2012!) 86 chassis development Forum Build Thread with this massive three part post. This time we show some new products for this chassis (like a new seat bracket kit, new seat options, oil pan options) as well as updates to some of our existing products (production LS swap long tube headers! updated LS / T56 crossmember design, new trans mount bushing, new tubular bumper beam, and more).

There are a lot of pictures showing the work to our shop LS swapped 86 – like the tubular front bumper beam we have added. We did this to allow for a bigger radiator which is mounted at a steeply rolled angle, which gives us a lot of extra room in front of the engine and allows for a cooling via hood venting. We show the steps to mounting a custom radiator, including the upper and lower mounting brackets and isolators.

After seeing some new “Tuner” series of seats from Sparco we bought a few, weighed them, and tested them in a number of cars – including our 86. We picked a pair that we will use for street and track use in our shop 86. Tilt back seats are much more practical that fixed back seats for the street, but still allow for 6-point belts to be used. This seat test led us to develop our production seat brackets for this 86 chassis, using a mount style we have developed on chassis like the R8, S197 and S550 Mustangs. So we have a pair of seats mounted in our shop 86 now.

Picking an oil pan for our shop car took some research, which we share in this post. We also show the new transmission crossmember and our LS/T56 Magnum XL drivetrain going into our shop car, as well as the front accessory drives we recommend for this swap. Then we show in detail the steps we went through to build new prototype long tube headers, then how the pre-production CNC bent units were installed, then finally the production batch after they arrived.

We show where the “Alpha” 86 LS build is today (above), and even supplied the new owner of this car with the 18×11″ wheels shown. That car has gone through a lot of updates and is racing in both NASA and Gridlife events. Lastly we show the next steps for our shop 86 build, including CAN integrated wiring harness, the Tilton clutch, oil cooler, and more. You can read the latest forum build thread entries starting here.

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