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Engine Tech Technical discussion related to all relevant engines such as KA, SR, RB, CA, 2JZ , L24/26/28, VG, VQ, and LSx series.


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Old 03-06-2017, 12:39 PM   #1
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1uz vs. LS

So I have been looking around at swap ideas for a while now and been wanting to do Ls/v8. I have normally not paid any attention to or looked into 1uz swaps until recently and was wondering if are any people that have done the swap and have an opinion on to do the swap or not. The only reason I'm looking into 1uz is because its dirt cheap and I could most likely get it into the 350ish horsepower range without spending a large sum of money. I am also new to this forum so if there is already a thread where this is discussed a link to it would be greatly appreciated, thanks.
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Old 03-06-2017, 12:57 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by TJ74_ View Post
So I have been looking around at swap ideas for a while now and been wanting to do Ls/v8. I have normally not paid any attention to or looked into 1uz swaps until recently and was wondering if are any people that have done the swap and have an opinion on to do the swap or not. The only reason I'm looking into 1uz is because its dirt cheap and I could most likely get it into the 350ish horsepower range without spending a large sum of money. I am also new to this forum so if there is already a thread where this is discussed a link to it would be greatly appreciated, thanks.
The issue with the 1UZ, though its a very reliable engine with decent power, the aftermarket is still very limited. The only way to not spend oodles of money making that much power is forced induction. If you plan to stay NA, you will quickly realize that your bank account will suffer greatly. 1st gen 1UZs have the thickest con rods but has the lowest power outputs. Last gen introduced VVTI which boosted power and MPGs, but also added challenges of wiring and such. This engine is abundant and cheap and is a really good choice for stock power.

The LS motors are animals. You don't have to throw gobbs of money at them to make power. They are also abundant and everyone knows how to tune them. The initial cost of say an LS1/T56 is a turn off to me (purely opinion) so when deciding to do an engine swap... I decided to not use that base engine. If I were going the LS route, I'd stick with the 5.3L (LM7) as a base as they are cheap and everywhere. But I would try to source an LM4 block as they are aluminum and save some weight. The LS will always win the power output as compared to the 1UZ. They are also a much smaller package as compared to the 1UZ.

All this being said, I am choosing to go the 1UZ route. Most likely with VVTI and will swap in 1st gen con rods. I am not looking to make a lot of power as I'd like to make the car as balanced as possible regarding suspension/tires/weight vs power.
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Old 03-06-2017, 01:34 PM   #3
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ruby said it best, I was very close to going 1uz (even bought an engine) but by the time it was in and running then a small turbo build itd cost the same as an ls
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Old 03-06-2017, 01:35 PM   #4
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Ya I completely have faith in the Ls platform, I've driven ls swapped cars and love the power, but the 5.3 motors are slowly getting more expensive and the T56 is very expensive. I was considering the 1uz because i can buy a motor for around $200 and can use the 350z 6 speed with it and be pretty set
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Old 03-06-2017, 01:41 PM   #5
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Speaking of 350 trans, ISR just made bellhousing adapters that mate ls to 350 transmissions making it more affordable compared to a t56
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Old 03-06-2017, 03:32 PM   #6
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It makes it a bit more affordable but the swap adapter is still $700 or so and with the rest of the swap stuff it's not a ridiculous amount more affordable that just looking for a cheaper t56 in my opinion
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Old 03-07-2017, 12:01 PM   #7
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1uz vs LS

I have two friends that have gone the 1uz route (both of whom had their cars impounded and neither of them got a ref ticket). One of them had multiple LS swaps previously and both of his LS motors had issues. He has had his 1uz swap for years. It starts up every time and he beats the piss out of it. He uses a stock K tranny, which means both motor replacement and tranny replacement would be cheap. RubyS14 said it best when it comes to adding power to the 1uz, though. If you aren't satisfied with the stock power output of a 1uz you're probably better off going LS and starting with a cheaper iron block to help keep costs down. I'm pretty sure you need a stand alone to tune a 1uz and good luck finding someone who knows what they're doing tuning it whereas with an LS you'll start out with more power and have cheaper tuning options. It's a cost and reliability vs. power decision really. Also, I believe header routing is easier with a 1uz.
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Old 03-07-2017, 12:25 PM   #8
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Speaking of 350 trans, ISR just made bellhousing adapters that mate ls to 350 transmissions making it more affordable compared to a t56
They copied LOJ Conversions swap kit. Just Loj uses everything made in the USA and a quality clutch masters flywheel. This is the kit that I run on my ls1-cd009 and works perfect. I did run the Serial9 shifter though. Also using this setup you use a 350/g clutch and you don't have to switch out clutch masters to match the slave since 350z/g are the same size of 240sx clutch masters. It ends up being about the same price compared to a cheap t56, but you don't have to use a garb t56 and replacing a trans when it goes to shit is cheaper.
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Old 03-07-2017, 12:36 PM   #9
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Sorry to thread jack but what was your experience like with the CD009? Hated my T56 setup even with a fresh rebuild and some upgrades.

Any used engine has the risk of having issues and as noted above you can use other GM motors other than the high cost LS1, LS2, LS3 etc. GM engines are known to be stout even with high mileage. Know enough folks with 200k plus miles beating the piss ot of them with zero issues. My uncles 2002 was one with 280k miles and mild upgrades with no motor issues but the trans blew twice.

I like both setups for different reasons but its hard to beat the availability of GM parts and the aftermarket support for them.
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Old 03-07-2017, 01:12 PM   #10
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Sorry to thread jack but what was your experience like with the CD009? Hated my T56 setup even with a fresh rebuild and some upgrades.

Any used engine has the risk of having issues and as noted above you can use other GM motors other than the high cost LS1, LS2, LS3 etc. GM engines are known to be stout even with high mileage. Know enough folks with 200k plus miles beating the piss ot of them with zero issues. My uncles 2002 was one with 280k miles and mild upgrades with no motor issues but the trans blew twice.

I like both setups for different reasons but its hard to beat the availability of GM parts and the aftermarket support for them.


I love the cd009, the only down grade about it is it sits a little low in the back and the gearing is not hwy friendly like a t56. I am switching to a z/g diff to run the 3.3 and 3.5 rearends. the 4.08 was 3250 rpm @70 which isn't fun, but should be around 2500 rpm or lower with the 3.3. I would recommend this all day, the shifter feels amazing unlike a t56 and you can shift super fast with the serial9 shifter. cd009's are super stout and I have not had any issues with it. I am only running a clutch masters fx350 with a HD pressure plate and it feels and engages like stock and doesn't have a problem holding 365whp and 350 tq
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Old 03-07-2017, 01:33 PM   #11
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Go LS you wont look back.
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Old 03-07-2017, 01:42 PM   #12
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@Travon...awesome man thanks for the feedback. Wont be jumping into another swap anytime soon but the T56 would not be on my list for my next swap. I sound like an old fart but I have really bad knees and the T56 was not fun to drive in traffic.

I have heard the gearing in the CD009 isnt really highway friendly so I would be going with the Q45 3.54 diff or Armada/Z diff setup anyway. The T56 was cruising at about 2000 rpm on the highway in 6th which was nice.

Not too concerned about the trans sitting low as my car will not be dumped.

Last edited by 2muchboost; 03-07-2017 at 04:03 PM..
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Old 03-07-2017, 02:34 PM   #13
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@Travon...awesome man thanks for the feedback. Wont be jumping into another swap anytime soon but the T56 would not be on my list for my next swap. I sound like an old fart but I have really bad knees and the T56 was not fun to drive in traffic.

I have heard the gearing in the CD009 isnt really highway friendly so I would be going with the Q45 3.54 diff or Armada/Z diff setup anyway. The T56 was cruising at about 2200 rpm on the highway in 6th which was nice.

Not too concerned about the trans sitting low as my car will not be dumped.


Yeah as long as you pair it with a lower geared rearend you will be good to go. My clutch is suuuuper linear and light with perfect feel, your knees do not suffer. I couldn't be happier with clutch master products. If you ever have other questions feel free to PM here or on instagram @bust3dmobile
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Old 03-07-2017, 03:49 PM   #14
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I prefer the $700-$900 LSx 5.3L engines, Turbocharge it the way it comes and you have 500~rwhp in a reliable daily driver, with a drivetrain that only costs $1500~

Use the 4l80e trans and a HD2 trans-go shift kit.

My biggest word of advice before buying an engine:
1. compression test every cylinder, look for 155 to 170psi across the board. I tested 8 engines before I found one with good compression.
2. check that you can loosen all of the exhaust manifold studs. If any are broken, you will likely need to pull the head off and have a machine shop remove them, they are tricky [email protected](*@#)(*@ers. Luckily the heads for those engines are cheap, You can get 2x rebuilt OEM heads (862 casting number is typical) from ebay for $300 shipped, and send them back your old nasty heads with broken studs as a core.
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Old 03-08-2017, 08:16 AM   #15
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Dont get me wrong going Auto has a ton of advantages over Manual but I just cant bring myself to going Auto personally. This is even with my attention focused more on straight line fun then drifting...which I know benefits tremendously from a solid Auto setup. Love the feeling of controlling the shifts even if it presents itself with a butt load of human error and chance for things to go wrong.

+1 on the advise Kingtalon.
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