Water pump, throttle body

Okay, finally I made some good progress last night.  I’m tired of fighting parts issues…stupid oil pump and stupid intake (stupid owner who didn’t do his research).

I started with the water pump.  Here is a picture of the pump itself:

And the pump it replaces.  Note it doesn’t have the U-tube hose coming out fo the upper right; originally, I believe that went to the Throttle Body (TB) heater manifold, which will be deleted in the new system.  In the original design, the TB manifold was fed from the steam tube return from the back of the heads (more on that soon); I’m going to return it directly to either the heater loop or to the water pump outlet to the radiator line.  Old pump:

Check the chromie that came off the old water pump!  That’s ONE part I’ll be salvaging for sure, after a little NeverDull work.

I’m going to start with the factory 180F thermostat that came with the new waterpump, although I will likely change to the 160F once break in is complete.  Getting to normal operating temperature is important for break in, and there’s no need to slow it down with the lower TStat setting.  I currently am running a Flex-a-Lite electric fan with contact pyrometer adjustment; I don’t know if I’ll be able to get this accurate enough for the TStat to help or not.  I may have to convert back to twin electric fans, which is how the camaros and corvettes ran it.  They’re controlled by the PCM.

For installation, first you install the splined gear drive coupler to the gear, after greasing:

Then just get the water pump driveshaft aligned to the coupler, and install!  No problemo.

Then I realized I was out of parts to work on for the block, so I did a bunch of side projects.  I cleaned up a whole BUNCH of sensors:  Coolant Temperature Sensor (CTS, for the water pump; I installed it as well, lower driver’s side of pump), Engine Coolant Temperature (ECT) sensor which goes into the head, Oil Pressure Sensor (OPS) which goes into the back of the block, and will need to be installed piecemeal after the intake manifold is on (I may leave it off to facilitate priming, since you can’t spin the oil pump through the distributor hole in the back of the engine…since there isn’t one!  The other option is to use an oil accumulator into the OPS hole to press oil into the galleries…that, or just pour it down into the heads and rockers and pushrods themselves.),

Then I pulled the throttle bodies out and worked on them.  Here’s the old one:

And the new one in comparison!  Check out the SIZE difference!

Obviously, I moved the Throttle Body heater manifold to the new TB (on the right in the below picture), which houses the Idle Air Control (IAC) valve.  I also cleaned this guy up and reinstalled.  Then I cleaned the Throttle Position Sensor (TPS) and moved it over to the new TB.  This TB has a blank plate on top, but I’ll probably replace it with an LT1 badge or something.  It’d be awesome if I could get an S10 badge made for it cheaply, but I doubt that’ll happen.  Maybe the model shop here at work can do something for me.

The LT1 is an externally balanced engine, normally using a neutrally balanced torsion dampener and counterweights on the flywheel or flexplate.  I was unsure about the flywheel I bought since there’s a lot of argument about this on the internet.  But last night I pulled the new flywheel and the old flexplate, and it looks to me like the flywheel has the appropriate weights similar to (and in the same location) as the flexplate on the old auto that it came with.

Closeup of the weights inset into the flywheel:

Then I made sure i didn’t have anything left in the old parts that I’d need for the new engine.  That’s what made me remember the CTS out of the water pump.  I pulled a couple things, including disassembling the old fuel pressure regulator from the fuel rails and refamiliarizing myself with the fuel and vacuum setups.  I may have some creative hosework to do on the new fuel pressure regulator, depending on mounting location.  Also, the fuel lines are an unknown at this point, since I’m CERTAIN the existing lines in the truck are not what I need.  I’ll know more once I get the old engine out of the pickup; this will be one of the time killers during engine installation, since I’ll probably have to learn how to flare fuel lines.

I also cleaned up the steam tube return line and banjo bolts.  On the LT1, since the heads are cooled first, they are the high point in the coolant system.  With the coolant flowing front to back, bubbles may form at the back of the heads, causing local hot spots.  GM fixed this by installing two banjo bolts connected to a hardline that vented the steam back to the radiator in early models, and to the throttle body heater in the later ones.  I’ll be bypassing the TB, so I’ll need to return this line to the radiator or heater hoses.  I’ve ordered four new washers for these banjo bolts.

After cleaning and installing the CTS, I remembered that most vehicles (GM at least) have two coolant sensors, one for the computer (and therefore, the fans, if they’re computer controlled) and one for the dashboard gauge.  I remembered that I had a temp sensor in my spare parts pile, so I went looking.  Sure enough, there it was, lying on the bench.  So I cleaned that up, and looked for where it went.  Here are the old heads:

You can see in the nearer head where the ECT (engine coolant temperature sensor) goes, in the back between the two exhaust manifold bolts.  I checked, and my new heads don’t have this port, so I’m not sure how that’s going to work out yet.  Also, I see that there’s a plug in the other head in the same location, and it’s fitting is square.  Most plugs like this fit a 3/8″ ratchet, but this is somewhere between 3/8″ and 1/4″; never seen anything like it before.   Luckily, I don’t know of a place that needs that plug on the new heads, so maybe I’ll just leave it.  Closeup:

And now, for the payoff.  The engine with the water pump attached:

And my favorite of last night:

Things I’m still working on, waiting on, or mulling over (if you have thoughts or comments or advice, please let me know!):

Intake manifold, Oil pump pickup installation tool, steam vent washers

How to prime the engine with oil before start up?

Where does the ECT go if not into the new heads?  Can I run without it, or tap into the other one?

Confirm the flywheel is the right one for this engine

How much of the ignition system do I need to replace?  Coil, ignition module, aftermarket ignition components?

What should I do about fan setpoints?

The old engine came with EGR block off plates; can I run this thing without an EGR system?  What are the emissions, computer, and emissions inspection repercussions?

Order PCM (ebay), order wiring harness (Current Performance Wiring)

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