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I've wrenched on a few LSx swaps. Honestly? The cheapest and easiest way to get your engine? Buy a Tahoe / Suburban / GM truck on Craigslist / facebook marketplace. Search terms like "bad transmission" etc etc. Buddy of mine scored a 6.0 setup in a running 2500 work truck that was BEAT TO SHIT....trans was broke, but it ran great. After pulling drivetrain and the entire harness - he parted out the rest. He actually has ZERO in his drivetrain because of this.

Bonus? You get to HEAR / SEE the engine run and you get all the "little" stuff that you have to go hunting for otherwise.
 

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Addicted to Junk
85 Bronco, 309ci I6 w/4bbl, np435, 4" lift, 37" Irok NDs, 4.56 w/ Detroit Locker and tru trac
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11,137 Posts
A parts truck is ALWAYS a good idea. I bought an 88 f250 for 1700 for just the zf5. I literally drove it home, 25 miles. Got all the small stuff, and have a running 351w withba pickup wrapped around it. Has a toolbox, carr steps, headache rack, longtube headers, and some other little goodies.
 

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I am interested in to seeing how this plays out. I have had the same thoughts of swapping in a LS as well. My tired old 351w has a lot of the O L.D disease. Every time I use it is something else shows its age.

My thoughts are go LQ4 / 4l80E / Np261
Aftermarket engine and trans controler and new custom drive shafts.
Logic is 6.0L is stout all motor in stock form. 4L80E Is good piece as well. NP261 came behind 4L80 in HD trucks. Use the aftermarket computer for engine/trans control.
 

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Well, if somebody figures out how to do this to a Bronco, and does a kickass writeup on how to and how much, cool. Do what you want, but for trading dollars for time, you would probably be better off with a stroked SBF.
 

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Bronco Master
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578 Posts
Discussion Starter #25
I went to the junkyard this weekend looking for engines and found a unicorn that has eluded me for over 20 years. I found a small block wide ratio 4x4 ZF5 transmission in a 1989 F-250 with the 300-6 engine. Needless to say, I had to get it. I was thinking that this would submarine my LS swap idea and I’d have to stick with a Ford engine, but in looking online this evening I found a company in Australia that makes a bellhousing adapter for the LS and ZF5 to mate up. Assuming I can get the parts from Australia or find a manufacturer in the US, this should actually simplify my swap because I can use the ford OE clutch hydraulics in the ZF5. This should be easier and possibly cheaper than buying $1200 worth of adapters for the LS to T-18. We’ll see where this goes.
 

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Bronco Master
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578 Posts
Discussion Starter #26
Finally got the Aussie company to respond and let me order the LS to ZF adapter plate. Total cost shipped was $546, I’m not sure how soon I’ll see it but it should be on it’s way Monday. My buddy cleaned up the trans with a power washer last weekend, everything looks good. I need to find the shift tower ($150 on eBay) and order the rebuild/reseal kit for the trans. I’m still looking for the right LS engine.
 

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95 Bronco, 351W, E4OD, 4.56 gears, 35x12.50x15 Patagonia MTs.
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Not hating on the ls swap as they are great engines and would be a solid choice but just curious if you considered a 408w build with something like a Holley, edelbrock or megasquirt setup. Then it would be a bolt in. No adapters needed, no new transmission or transfer case compatability problems.

A 408w with good parts will make similar power per liter and similar power band to an ls based engine.

If you go down the ls road I'm sure it will end up great though. Can't really go wrong, it just seems like a lot more work for not much gain.
The blueprint 408 is very similar to a stock LS3. Is it as reliable? Who knows. I'm in a similar boat and plan to continue upgrading my 351W setup until AEM finally releases their EV motor controller and then I'll look into putting in some tesla junk. :)
 

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Bronco Master
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Discussion Starter #28
The blokes at Dellow Conversions in Australia set a world speed record for shipping parts. They shipped the LS adapter plate two day Express from Australia to Arizona! The part looks to be great quality.

IMG_20200221_231239.jpg
 

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Dude, welcome back to FSB! Been a long time. It's not quite the same rib poking crowd it used to be, but we still have some fun. And steve83 is gone...
Why is Steve83 gone?
I'm still new on this forum but his helpful info pops up on nearly every thread I've read when researching things here.
 
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