Our frozen SLC January update on Project “Grifter”


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Straight up for reals player, it’s damn cold in our home state of Minnesota. We’ve seen temps well below zero and not having a garage heater has frankly gotten in the way of making decent progress on the car.

We’ve resorted to finding things to bring into the basement and shuttling tools one at a time from the garage. It’s not all that efficient and frankly, slow work. Regardless, we’ve been trying our best with a small space heater and finding other projects to do. Our motto through this whole build is:

It’s all gotta get done, so any work, even not %100 on task gets us closer to a finished product

Our opening shot is of Jim Hall who works at TPIS in Chaska. He helped us get the motor to and from his shop.

10407589_10155021470180235_4614827572967183435_n copyThe dyno went pretty well all things considered. If you missed our dyno video, it can be seen below.

Our motor made the “as advertised” 525hp on the dot and 461 ft-lbs of torque. No fiddling, no adjustments, no “corrections” to the tune or anything. It was spot on. No complaints from us! We will dyno the motor again once it’s in the car and running so we can make some tuning adjustments with a load on the tires.

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Next up, we started to attack the interior. We mocked up the dash board to see what needed trimming and what needed to be done. The more stuff we put on the better it gets! We then opted and purchased a new steering wheel and adapter. The one that comes with the kit isn’t bad, it’s just that in planning ahead, we noticed that we would have to weld the stock shaft onto the steering column which didn’t allow us much wiggle room down the road. The NRG steering adapter/wheel/quick release combo will allow to swap steering wheels down the road or remove items if the time comes.

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We did finish up some little piddly bits such as the door latches and a couple turnbuckles for the front splitter. We installed the inner door latches too, but still have to figure out how to attach them all together. That said, we are going to wait to see how the body lines up before installing the door strikers.

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This could be called “before and after”. This is a job we were able to do while it was -35* outside. Think I’m joking? I sadly am not.We trimmed the vents and cut out the holes, it’s an odd shape so it took some doing to get it just right. We opted to pop-rivet them in place rather than graft them in because it’s quite possible that they will break from a rock or something stupid, we do want to be able to fix them easily in the future.

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If the padding on the seat pictured above looks familiar, it’s probably because we stole our wife’s yoga mat and cut it up to make some padding for our seats. It made a world of difference. The AC pump is low and on the passenger side. Since there’s no power steering the belt routing for the alternator, water pump and AC pump are pretty basic. Our friend Eric H. helped us build this small turnbuckle for the AC pump, it not only locates the compressor but also tightens the dedicated belt to tension.


This is the engine configuration that comes with the additional kit from RCR for our SLC. It comes with the AC bracket, two brackets the alternator, some bolts, a tensioner, a belt and an idler pulley. We’ll see if that’s enough belt wrap for the alternator, we will ad a pulley later if it’s not sufficient. The alternator is a stock GM 105amp unit with the stock number of 8247. These come on Tahoe’s, Silverado’s and GM trucks with the 5.3L engine in the mid 2000’s. You’ll need a couple 1/2″ spacers and 2 – 90mm 10×1.50 bolts to finish it up.

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The motor was put into place, despite the cold weather we soldered on. There are a couple brackets that will need drilled through the frame to make sure the engine stays put. All in all, that’s where we stopped. It’s cold and frankly, we’re tired.

Catch’ya on the flip side!



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