In this interview, Brent tells us about his 1982 Corvette that he did a LS1, that’s right LS1, swap in. This is the best of mixing the old with the new!
What’s your real name? (What’s your online screen name?)
Brent B or MNBrent on most forums
Where do you live?
Ramsey, a suburb NW of Minneapolis
What do you do for a living?
Application Engineer in Semiconductor Industry (electronics degree)
What originally attracted you to the Corvette? What keeps you going today?
I had a few Gen2 F-bodies and an 86 IROC Camaro previously. I was looking for something more sport car oriented and fell for the lines of the C3 Corvette. This is the only car I have ever owned this long and I never tire of the body lines. The aftermarket support is amazing for all generation Corvettes, and that’s part of what keeps me hooked as well.
Your Corvette has a LS1 swap in it. What made you tackle this project?
The 82 Corvette with the CFI motor was a “gentlemans cruiser”. I had updated all other items to the car and the motor was the last item left. Although I had no issues with the CFI for reliability, I needed more power. I did not want carburetion, and the LS swap has been proven very successful in many types of cars, even C3s. So to me the power, weight, and drivability of the LS powertrain put me over the edge. The costs to do this are relatively low, and the results are stellar!! The car is now a blvd screamer!!
What was the easiest part of the LS1 swap? The hardest part?
The 82 Corvette has an EFI fuel system that already has an in-tank fuel pump, making the fuel system conversion part of the swap very simple. The available motor mount adapter plates makes mounting the engine in place almost child’s play. The existing transmission crossmember is setup for a 700R4. The 4L60E has the same external dimensions as a 700R4, so only slightly elongating of the mount holes required to bolt up the 4L60E tranny. It did require a 1 inch longer driveshaft.
The hardest parts were figuring out the wiring, which involved intermixing the LS system wiring to the existing CFI computer wiring and finding an air intake setup that fits in the tight underhood space. The wiring took the most time of any single task and LS1Tech forum has lots of info with plenty of experienced people to let you get this correct on the first pass.
What are your goals for your Corvette and how close are you to achieving them?
My goal has been to build a lightweight performance oriented street car. The LS1 swap, AC delete, C5-Z06 seats, and removing the rear spare tire have probably dropped close to 200lbs from the curb weight of the car. You can really feel this in the overall feel of the car. The LS1 swap made a considerable difference in acceleration, especially from the 3K+ RPM level!! The Hydroboost brake system has taken the braking of the car and put it into a new level for the street. The control is far superior to the original vacuum assist and has to be experienced. Next items for me would be more modern rubber and possibility of a big brake kit for even greater braking control.
Have a favorite story to tell about your Corvette?
When I bought it, I had it delivered from Anaheim Ca to Mpls Mn on a car hauler. The brakes were bad, so I got a great price on it. Turned out after all the hardware was replaced with no luck by the previous owner, it all came down to just one more component, the only item he did not replace, which was the vacuum power booster. Great brakes after replacing that!!
Who has helped you the most along the way with the car? Any mentors?
I can’t really say I have a single mentor, but there have been many folks along the way that have been inspirational to me keeping the car and effectively upgrading it for real performance. Those folks are mostly Corvetteforum members going back to 2001.
What’s the best part about being a Corvette owner? The most challenging?
Love the feel of driving the C3. Something about the front fenders riding high up and the feel of the torque coming up through the chassis. There is also frequently looks, stares, and positive comments made about the car that let you know you have something special.
The most challenging thing is trying to keep the car nice when I’m driving it so much!!
The memorable items are:
LS1-4L60E swap, 3.07 rear gears, AC Delete
C5 Shorty headers, 2.5inch dual exhaust with C6 Corvette X-pipe, Pacesetter Monza style mufflers
Torque Thrust II wheels with 3.75 inch backspace for ½ inch total wider track front/rear, Dunlop 255-60-R15s.
VBP “Rack Attack” rack and pinion kit with a C3 version Lecarra steering wheel
VBP O-ring brake calipers, braided SS Teflon brake flex lines, 94 Astrovan Hydroboost power booster conversion
100% rebuilt front/rear suspensions, poly bushings, Moog components, Bilstein Sport shocks, lowered 1.5 to 2 inches, VBP Spreader bar linking the upper control arms mounts together
PCM controlled Lincoln Mark VIII fan, 4 core Big Block radiator
All new interior changed from Camel to Black color, C5-Z06 Corvette seats, Chrome shifter hardware, Redline extra tall leather shift boot, Subwoofered stereo
Repaint to Black by previous owner from code 59 Gold, FormulaOne Pinnacle window tint
Are you on Twitter? Facebook? How can people find you online?
Facebook and you can usually find me on the Corvette Forum in the C3 section.