Chevy Astro and GMC Safari Forum banner

1988 Astro sleeper.

1264 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.
See less See more
1 - 1 of 10 Posts
Wow... GREAT find!
Perfect for you project!
AND a great price too.

I'm familiar with much of what you're doing. I also have several TH400 transmissions.. ran them behind my big blocks. Sadly not much use for them now. I cruise the highways.. so overdrive (and lockup) is now very important to me. My 700R4 is a good fit.. but going to need a little love if it's going to play with my V8. I've got a nice tight low-mileage modded TH350 (with Holeshot converter) doing temporary duty. The wife loves chirping the tires when she drives it.

I've also run TCI converters (with anti-balloon plates). I found out quickly how important and neccessary those extra balloon plates were. Mine was 10" 3000-3500 stall (behind a full race big-block engine). In my opinion however, you may be running WAY too much converter (with 3500-3800 stall).. considering your "low rpm Comp cam". It all depends on your objective though. Burning rubber will not be a problem.. lol.

I bought a lot of "Comp Cams" in my day.. always my favorite brand. Wish I had a "more tame" cam now... as good mid range toque is all that is really necessary for these vans. My A/C and my current race-cam don't get along (at idle and at traffic lights.. lol).. but it sure sounds good. For computer controlled throttle body and FI... the right cam is certainly important.

I too am still running stock rear in my 92 behind my healthy V8.
It's got well over 300K on it and it's never even been cracked open.
Still running stock springs too.
I guess I'm really just pushing things back there.. lol

The motor assembly looks AWESOME!!! For someone who is not taking "too many" photos, you sure took some great photos! Keep them coming. The 6.0 is going to be incredible! I've bored a few engines myself, and familiar with performance goodies. Excellent job with excellent parts and assembly. LOVE THIS!!

I've had to re-read your posts a couple times.. you put in a LOT of information.
Like to know more about your planned dual header exhaust system.

The GEN 1 shorty is the PERFECT V8 HOT-ROD SLEEPER!!!
And it seems you couldn't have found a better find!
I have my suspicions that this is going to evolve nicely.
I want to stay on your "mailing list" of updates.. LOL

You seem to be quite knowledgeable and already know what you want and need... which is quite refreshing. I have a feeling this is not your first time. Looking forward to your project build with great enthusiasm.

See less See more
1 - 1 of 10 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.