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1988 Astro sleeper.

1308 Views 9 Replies 7 Participants Last post by  backinabox
I’d like to share some of the stuff I learned, figured out, cobbled whatever you want to call it when I did my LS swap in my van. I didn’t take a large amount of pictures for the project but I will insert them as it makes sense. A little background on the unit.
Tire Wheel Car Land vehicle Vehicle

Here is the day I brought it home. Killer marketplace find. $500. 105,000 miles. I’m 2nd owner. Old guy I bought it from bought it new and used it for his auto glass business. Never drove in the winter and stored inside as long as it wasn’t out on a job. The 4.3 was knocking And down a cylinder but it started and drove itself on the trailer. Everybody laughed about my grandpa van, they just couldn’t see the big picture. The plan was a 6.0 with a 400 in it. When I was in high school I swapped an old 305 into my 87 Astro and never had issues with the rear end so I figured I would leave this one stock too, it already had the G80 with 3.42’s in it. We’ll I’ll get into that later….
First I collected parts. I’ll try and list manufacturers and parts as i go.
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Automotive tire Automotive exterior Motor vehicle Bumper Gas

Automotive tire Wood Gas Automotive wheel system Rolling

Automotive tire Wood Bumper Tread Gas

Audio equipment Symmetry Pattern Metal Engineering
The trans is a 400 turbo i sourced out of a 1977 motorhome. It was built with a TCI reverse manual trans brake valve body, raybestos clutches, upgraded planetaries and other misc upgrades. It’s running a Transmission Specialties 3500-3800 8” converter with ballon plate. The engine was a 6.0 I pulled out of my s-10. It was knocking so it needed freshened up. When I disassembled it I found it has some stiff wrist pins. I ended up horse trading for a low mile 6.2 rotating assembly. Sent the block in to get bored .065 to fit the new slugs and have a 24 tooth reluctor wheel installed. Picked up a comp cams low rpm cam, a set of new 823 squareport heads, complete head kit, GM performance LS7 lifters, file fit moly rings, chromoly pushrods, rocker arm bushing upgrade kit, king bearings and all ARP fastners. I’m running 67 Chevy truck direct fit 2.5” shorty headers. The dump on them is almost a perfect fit in the Astro. I found a deal on a LS3 intake and throttle body so I grabbed that and started assembling the engine.
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