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  1. #1
    Jr. Apprentice
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Madison Lake, MN

    Default Any advice for 96 4.3L with 4L60 into a 77 Pontiac

    So I had an engine fire in my 1977 Pontiac Phoenix last summer the main damage was the wire harness and the carbuerator. Soon after I found a good running 96 C1500 with a 4.3L for below scrap price. My thought was "if I have to rewire it, why not have fuel injection and overdrive trans", expecially since it wont cost me much since I can get my $ back in the scraps.

    What I am looking for is any advice on installing a SFI engine into a vehicle with no computer controls at all. I plan to pull the engine, trans, rear end, driveshaft, fuse block, relay center, wire harnesses, and pcm and I would like to know if there is anything else that I will need to keep form the truck.

    Hopefully some one here has done something similar and is willing to share some hard earned wisdom. Thanks

  2. #2


    If I was doing this a 4.3 wouldnt be my first choice, but sometimes ya gotta work with what ya got.
    Look at the GM parts website, specifically the crate engine section, they have stand alone computers designed just for these type applications.
    I recently put a Hydra-matic 6L80 6 speed automatic behind the 327 in my 70 Nova SS using a GM parts stand alone computer and a little bit of fabrication to make the new trans mounts.

  3. #3


    Your main problem will be the tcm setup. The engine should be predictable. One thing is the passkey ignition is it has it, need the ignition cyclinder and wires and figure out the resistance and wire a resistor in. Also its obd2 so you have emissions to hookup to run right or get downstream o2 simulators. Keeps the truck until your finished because i know on mid 90s gm alot of anti theft ran through the cluster on the cars so i would hook up everything and start removing extra after it runs so you can ser what is needed and wars extra.
    01' 1500 LT Z71 ECSB 5.3L
    line-x'd front brush guard with KC Daylighters, 6000k HID lows and highs, rewired highbeams, Trans-go mild shift kit, custom stainless duals, 3500 dually OEM taillights, K&N CAI. Still have OEM fender flairs and leveling kit in boxes waiting for time.

  4. #4
    Jr. Engineer
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    eas' bum fuk, maine


    if this were me, and in my opinion only. i would part the truck out for cash. i feel motor and trans alone should give you enough money to by a carbed v8 that would be a much nicer swap as far as wiring and overall availablity. if you wanted to get tricky you could fine a Fuel injected v8 if you were insistant on having FI.

    just belive me. the 4.3 sounds nice but your going to do it... then try and try and try to find ways to get more power out of it once you get bored.
    "i dont think you got the picture. i got a beautiful picture. this baby happens to have an extra turn of speed, which is the only thing i care about. you dont understnad what happens do you? they make cars. they make 'em exactly the same way. one or two of 'em turn out to be something special. nobody knows why. i know why. i may be kiddin' myself, but i think i can make somethin' out of that sad little bucket of bolts." ~ Tennessee Steinmetz

  5. #5
    Jr. Mechanic
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Los Angeles, CA


    Good luck! Sounds like it could be a fun project! You can bypass the passkey system easily. I had to get the VATS bypassed on my 5.3 swap by flashing the PCM. Just pay attention to your wiring, and don't get discouraged if you need to fabricate motor mount brackets and other stuff. It's true, 4.3 would not be my first choice, but like tbplus said, you play with the cards you have. Have wiring diagrams handy and keep your engine and trans wiring harnesses intact. What goes to the body module can either be ignored, or bypassed. Either plugging in some sort of bypass, or by reflashing the ECM. Have fun with it!!
    '88 Jimmy 4X4
    5.3l L59/ 4L60E Tuned by Tad
    4" Lift 33" BFG. Custom Brush Guard, KCs, outside spare, Oil pan guard etc.

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