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Discussion Starter #21
At the time we were already selling AEV products. Dan already had some Hemi's out there and AEV took theirs to Sema. I seriously considered putting a Hemi in my JK but I was helping a few guys out with Hemi JK's at the time and they were having problems. Overheating here in Vegas was a problem, plus (as Dave at AEV agreed) the size and weight of the Hemi was simply not ideal for the JK.

With my background in engine conversions, and being a G2 level State emission inspector I wanted something better. I looked at the options out there and it always came back to the LS. Well supported in the aftermarket, compact, light, powerful, new technology transmissions and emissions compliant.

I purchased a used 2008 JKUX and threw a 2009 LH6 5.3 in it, it was awesome. Quiet, economical, enough power to cruise at 80 mph and on. To this day my wife drives that 2008 X, it has over 130,000 miles on it.

Next I stepped it up to a 400+ HP 6.2 in my Rubicon, again I loved it and drive it to this day. My JK went from something I hated to drive to something that puts a smile on my face. We drove that same Rubi to New York twice after the first trip. I cruise in the 80 mph zones with ease, it is a entirely different vehicle, we loved it on road trips. My wife started to drive it as a DD but I took it away when she got a little aggressive with the vertical pedal and I heard her chip the tires around every turn; so she's happy with the 5.3 now.

So to make a short story long I realized there were a lot of guys just like me, loved their JK but hated the engine and wanted an alternative to the Hemi. I feel my prediction was correct as you look at the market, the SC and Hemi guys are migrating towards donig LS swaps, and it's only getting better.

In the swap business it's all about production efficiency to survive. Making and purchasing products for economies of scale. Doing one off builds with the amount of fabrication involved will run you out of business unless you are Foose or Icon. So I identified a vehicle, the Wrangler JK, hundreds of thousands were being built. I identified the market, guys like me who love off roading, have a few dollars and want a proper engine(demand). I saw no one out there doing LS swaps properly(Supply), so I decided to specialze in JK's. This is not a matter of us getting into other vehicles, they have alwas been there, even before the JK. This is a matter of specializing in LS JK's for economies so we can offer an affordable swap.

I really feel we have rationalized the Gen IV LS JK swap about as much as we can. Compared to the old days it is simple now with maximum functionality.

Our Gen III MT module and kit have brought all the advantages you mention. We now support OE accessory drives, mostly plug and play wiring and have added many new features. We stayedtrue to leave the systems independent and pure, non can bus contamination and a safe limp home mode. Until now it has been difficult to keep up with demand, and that's not good, having a customer wait 8-12 weeks for product.

Until the Gen III electronics I considered our swap a builders kit, not plug and play and it mainly intended for our installers. Many customers had install issues because it was not plug and play with stereo instructions so I had to make a decision. Supporting kits is costly and not as profitable as in house swaps. We could have dropped supporting kits but rather I chose not to advertise nor push them in the market. I kept a low profile on the forums and to this day have done no advertising. Guys that wanted kits would have to wait and deal with the open source nature of it. We sold a lot of kits, and it is interesting, some guys did the entire install without a single call to me. The read the forums and used common sense. Other guys needed help just about every day of their build.

Now we have a larger shop, we are purchasing parts in larger quantities. With the electronics virtually rationalized we can focus on production and proper instructions. Mitch and Joey(wiring guys) are putting together video and paper instructions. Using the GM accessory drive has saved a lot of time, but I will say we purchased several large CNC machines and are about to introduce new brackets for the Jeep accessories. It's not worth running the Pentstar accessories, they are odd, expensive and hard to find unlike the GM accessories.

We have done dozens of Pentstar swaps now, and we fully support the Automatic AC mode as well as the Pentstar rpm interface. All the steering wheel functions and bumpshift remains functional on the Pentstar swaps.

We are redesigning our website LSWrangler.com we are adding an interactive "Build your JK" feature so you can get pricing right off the site without a builder form sent in. We will still want a VID(vehicle identification form) because this tells us about your JK. Skid plates, Spod, SC and other issues we can set up for. We have different mounts for the ECM and Bussman depending if you JK is an 11' or a 12', if it has a single or dual Spod, if it has a brake booster attached Air Compressor, etc.. We have seen about every configuration there is and can help you with it.

So to answer your question yes we can provide a consumer level lit for your JK. As you can see we are gearing up for exactly that. The instructions are in the works and when available we will add the kit to the website. Our goal is to ruduce the install time and be virtually plug and play. This not only saves you time and grief it does the same for me.

BTW the LS3 is an excellent engine, I have delivered several in the last few weeks and can say every time I drive one I get a little bit jealous.

Visit the website, you will see many new announcements. I also want to say we have got almost caught up on kits, we were as far back as 16-18 weeks but Brian(office manager), Cory(fabrication) and Mitch(electrical) have really stepped up the game to be proactive and have parts on the shelf rather than the other way around. Mitch's has saved many hours by streamlining the wiring, reducing the connectors and wire count. Our current installs look OE, no redundant sensors or wires. It took guys with talent like Mitch to allow me to do more R&D that you refer too. We would never jeperdize the development or support for the JK because it is our bread and butter, we only want to make it better. But we are at a point it is very very good so any improvement is small and incremental vs the old days. Adding the new Gen V engine has to happen. We want to offer new vehicle builds and California requires us to run the new engines.

We also have a few other JK developments in the works I hope to see, a possible diesel that makes sense and a low cost V6 swap, They are in the early stages and will follow the Gen V powertrain in development.
 

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Mitch-
Sounds like your harnesses are better than OEM quality. Its nice to know that you offer some options for those who might be worried about water-proofing.

Robbie-
I like the sounds of a diesel option that makes sense. Coming form the military and OTR trucking diesels have a spot in my heart. But for a JK the price/power/weight of a diesel swap right now just doesn't make sense. A 4.8L LS would currently make more sense with the swap kits on the market now.
 

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Robbie

Does the Gen 3 kit also includes auto shifter programming through gauge cluster,

It would be ideal for some solid instructions for upgarde from Gen 1 to latest

Love to use GM assessories drive kit, upgarde wiring harness, remove what and leave what instructions, auto shifter and GM AC
 

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The programming is accomplished through the Motech module button. We can provide instructions as well as phone support.


Robbie

Does the Gen 3 kit also includes auto shifter programming through gauge cluster,

It would be ideal for some solid instructions for upgarde from Gen 1 to latest

Love to use GM assessories drive kit, upgarde wiring harness, remove what and leave what instructions, auto shifter and GM AC
 

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Discussion Starter #25
Robbie

Does the Gen 3 kit also includes auto shifter programming through gauge cluster,

It would be ideal for some solid instructions for upgarde from Gen 1 to latest

Love to use GM assessories drive kit, upgarde wiring harness, remove what and leave what instructions, auto shifter and GM AC
Zak, the manual JK uses a different cluster and PCM. The PRNDL driver is in the C4 connector of the automatic PCM. The manual PCM does not have the C4(transmission) connector.

The PRNDL input is essentially a 7 segment driver which the MoTech module is programmable for. Let me do some testing, normally we do not use the PRNDL on manual swaps. There are also aftermarket PRNDL's available.

Swapping the accessory drive out is easy.

Going from a Gen II kit to Gen III is easy, going from Gen I to III will require a new harness. We have done many RHD JK's now so we can make it easier for you.
 

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Until the Gen III electronics I considered our swap a builders kit, not plug and play and it mainly intended for our installers. Many customers had install issues because it was not plug and play with stereo instructions so I had to make a decision. Supporting kits is costly and not as profitable as in house swaps. We could have dropped supporting kits but rather I chose not to advertise nor push them in the market. I kept a low profile on the forums and to this day have done no advertising. Guys that wanted kits would have to wait and deal with the open source nature of it. We sold a lot of kits, and it is interesting, some guys did the entire install without a single call to me. The read the forums and used common sense. Other guys needed help just about every day of their build.
Thanks for being candid about the past and current state of the kits. The few threads I have read it seemed like the DYI crowd was having a fair amount of challenges. I don't mind a good challenge, but I don't want my jeep laying in pieces for weeks or months as that becomes problematic on a number of fronts.

Now we have a larger shop, we are purchasing parts in larger quantities. With the electronics virtually rationalized we can focus on production and proper instructions. Mitch and Joey(wiring guys) are putting together video and paper instructions.
While I am not a technical writer nor do I have a training background, I am not sure I would use video as a good way to provide the necessary detail needed for such a complex undertaking. I think written instructions that include photos with graphics overlay can be just as or even more effective. Video is good for showing motion. The instructions need to show current state and / or desired state. In addition, kits will continue to evolve, parts change, therefore the instructions have to change. A written document is far easier to edit. Doing another video just because of a minor, but important change in a part would be a waste of resources. But that is just my $.02.






We are redesigning our website LSWrangler.com we are adding an interactive "Build your JK" feature so you can get pricing right off the site without a builder form sent in. .
I did go to the website before I wrote my diatribe. I found a lot of the material to be dated and somewhat hard to follow. An update would be good, but just another "to do" that may or may not get in the way of developing a consumer level kit.

So to answer your question yes we can provide a consumer level lit for your JK. As you can see we are gearing up for exactly that. The instructions are in the works and when available we will add the kit to the website. Our goal is to ruduce the install time and be virtually plug and play. This not only saves you time and grief it does the same for me.

I have zero doubt that you CAN provide a great conversion kit. The question is really when. I am not going to ask for a timeframe. After nearly 2 years of waiting, well it will happen when it happens. I just have to decide what I am going to do. I could drop in a 6.4 hemi. Sure its heavy, but it hauls ass. And given that I have already helped on a couple of 6.4 conversions, it would be very straight forward for me. As for the overheating concerns, I never had any issues with my 5.7 conversion even at high speed at altitude in the summer on long grades. Mine ran perfect.

Or maybe I will wait and see if the new JK with the AL body and 8 speed transmission is a little more lively. The transmission might be a game changer for the Pentacrap motor.

Or maybe leave the jeep alone and focus on putting a blower on my Gen V. That might be interesting.............

Glad to see that things at Motech are progressing. However, I think the ideal situation would be if a customer could drop off a Jeep on Monday and pick it up complete on the following Friday. If my friend and I can do a hemi conversion in a garage (with a two post lift) in a week, it stands to reason a professional shop should be able to do an LS conversion in week also. That would mitigate some of my concerns about having an in shop conversion done.
 

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I did my DIY customer installed Motech kit with a 6.0 & 6L80 a couple of months ago. I actually thought it was rather easy with a 2 post lift and a little support from Robbie and Mitch. I would like to think I didn't bother them too much!! Videos were very helpful?
My JK is much more fun to drive!!


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter #29
Here's some pictures of the gen V 6.2 before we drop the body. you can see the belt driven vacuum pump which should give us good braking even at idle. Looks like we may be able to use the full size truck exhaust manifolds.


 

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Looks good! If you dont mind me asking, what did you pick up that 6.2 for? In it a pullout engine and trans or a crate engine?
 

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Discussion Starter #31
Looks good! If you dont mind me asking, what did you pick up that 6.2 for? In it a pullout engine and trans or a crate engine?
Were seeing about $4-5k for a L83 5.3 with transmission and all the extras right now. The 6.2's are running about $2k more; but that is about $2k less than last year. I think the prices will drop as there is more supply.
 

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Were seeing about $4-5k for a L83 5.3 with transmission and all the extras right now. The 6.2's are running about $2k more; but that is about $2k less than last year. I think the prices will drop as there is more supply.
OK! So we are still talking about $20k all in. Higher for me with a manual and a 2016.

I can wait til next year and supply catches up a bit.

Any downside to the 6.2? My armored up Jeep is officially a pig and I figure if you are going to do it, do it right.

My Jeep will look great in your shop... Red Jeep. Red rocks.

Are you going to be out at SEMA? Would like to chat if you had a moment.
 

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Discussion Starter #33
OK! So we are still talking about $20k all in. Higher for me with a manual and a 2016.

I can wait til next year and supply catches up a bit.

Any downside to the 6.2? My armored up Jeep is officially a pig and I figure if you are going to do it, do it right.

My Jeep will look great in your shop... Red Jeep. Red rocks.

Are you going to be out at SEMA? Would like to chat if you had a moment.
Here's a picture of the Gen V engine with body on, we should be driving this one soon.


Anyone interested in a Gen IV swap please pm me, we are going to offer discounted install prices for forum members due to the economies from our Gen III kit. We have several 6.0 and 6.2 engines in inventory that are ready to go.

The economies will also apply to the Gen V swaps. The Gen V powertrains are a little more expensive currently but will come down. PM me your email address and I will send you an ID form to fill out for a quote. We hope to have an interactive price guide up on our website soon, it will allow you to build your JK and get a build cost without contacting us.

The advantages of the 6.2 are over 400 HP, all aluminum and lots of torque. The downside to the 6.2 is the higher cost. When talking Gen IV engine the 6.0 is a bargain, performance of a VVT Hemi on regular gas at a very affordable price.
 

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I REALLY wish I had the cash to do a 6.0 and 6l80 swap right now! The 6.0's that you have in inventory, are they used or new?
 

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Discussion Starter #35
I REALLY wish I had the cash to do a 6.0 and 6l80 swap right now! The 6.0's that you have in inventory, are they used or new?
All the 6.0's we have are low mileage. GM stopped production on most Gen IV V8's when the Gen V engine was introduced so getting new crate 6.0's and 6.2 truck engines is difficult. There is still new production on the 6.2 LS3 and 5.3 LC9 engines because GM sells a lot of E-Rod packages and LS3's in general.

The 6.0 is a very strong engine and capable of 300,000 miles so even if you get one with 50,000 miles it still has a long way to go.
 

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Discussion Starter #36
Man does this thing sound aggressive:) With Direct Injection and CVVT it has throttle response like a 1/4 mile car. At the same time it purr's at idle like a stocker.

With our Gen III electronics this install has no redundancies. The Jeep C100 harness has been removed and there is a simple plug in from the LS harness into the JK PCM.

This LS is entirely stand alone, fan control, charging, etc... This makes it as reliable as it can be. Were running all OE GM wiring for reliability, functionality and economics. In addition full emission compliance and factory calibrations in the engine and transmission.

I hope to be driving it next week.

 

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Discussion Starter #38
I thought you might want to see a peak at our new billet aluminum accessory drive brackets. They require no alignment and have been thoroughly tested. We have the truck drive about complete, the LS3 is in the works. For now were running the stock accessory drive on the Gen V engines with the exception of the PS pump which Gen V engines do not run. I'll start a proper thread when we are running these brackets on our machines.
View attachment TRUCK POWER STEERING BRACKET.PDF
 

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I would also like to swap back to the GM accessory drive as well as a heavy duty radiator and pentastar fan.

I can't remember which version kit I used but I finished it a couple of years ago using a 2013 LC9 truck engine in my 2007 JK. I tow my dirt bike trailer with a few bikes on it and powerwise I'm fine but it gets pretty hot on the steep hills. I see it's around $1500 for the rad and fan, now is that possible to fit on my set-up?

As well, when you say it's "easy" to convert back to the GM drive, is that easy for you, or does that mean a hack like myself could do it? And if you don't mind maybe a brief explanation as to how I could go about doing this. My a/c compressor seems to be on it's way out even after a fresh charge.

Thanks for keeping us up to date,
Sean
 

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Discussion Starter #40
I would also like to swap back to the GM accessory drive as well as a heavy duty radiator and pentastar fan.

I can't remember which version kit I used but I finished it a couple of years ago using a 2013 LC9 truck engine in my 2007 JK. I tow my dirt bike trailer with a few bikes on it and powerwise I'm fine but it gets pretty hot on the steep hills. I see it's around $1500 for the rad and fan, now is that possible to fit on my set-up?

As well, when you say it's "easy" to convert back to the GM drive, is that easy for you, or does that mean a hack like myself could do it? And if you don't mind maybe a brief explanation as to how I could go about doing this. My a/c compressor seems to be on it's way out even after a fresh charge.

Thanks for keeping us up to date,
Sean
It's easy to go from one drive to the other, we will need to supply new hoses and lines.

The Pentstar fan is enough for most applications even with light towing.

Keep an eye out for some extreme cooling options soon.
 
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