Choosing The Perfect Oil Pan For Your LS Swap

When performing an LS swap on a vehicle, you will be faced with several challenges along the way. Since GM did not build these engines for older model cars, you’ll need to figure out the best accessory drive, fuel system, and motor mounts for your specific application. Another area of concern is the oil pan. In some cases, the factory pans will work. But most of the time, they will not, due to a lack of clearance around the frame or steering linkage. But don’t worry, the aftermarket has plenty of options that will allow you to shoehorn an LS engine into the tightest of places. 

Chevrolet Performance

Chevrolet Performance knows the LS swap’s popularity and has been offering LS and LT crate engines for a few years now. They also provide their own LS Muscle Car Oil Pan Kit (PN 19212593). Chevrolet states that this pan fits virtually all 1955-1995 GM front-engine rear-wheel-drive V8 cars, and includes bolts, gaskets, pickup tube, nuts, windage tray, oil pan, and dipstick. This oil pan has a 5-quart capacity and can accept a max stroke of 3.620-inches.

Holley 

Holley is known for its development in the LS swap game and offers several different oil pan solutions. Its GM LS Swap Oil Pan (PN VK090000) is designed to fit most 1955-87 GM classic cars and trucks. This unit is comparable to the GM Muscle Car Oil Pan Kit, but it offers a lower profile for added ground clearance. This kit includes a cast oil pan (PN 302-1), dipstick tube, sump baffle, pickup tube, sump plug, bolts, gasket, oil filter stud, silicone RTV, and oil passage cover. This 5.5-quart oil pan will also accept a maximum crankshaft stroke of 4.25-inches. 

You can see how much lower the GM Muscle Car Pan hangs down versus Holley’s 302-1. If you have a lowered vehicle, the Holley pan is a great choice.

If you need more clearance from the front of the oil pan, Holley has a couple of more options with PN 302-2 and PN 302-3, which offer even more clearance and includes two 1/2-inch national pipe thread (NPT) oil bosses for those running turbocharged LS combinations. Holley notes that the 302-3 is perfect for 1967-1969 Camaro/Firebird, 1968-1974 Nova/Apollo/Ventura/Omega, 1982-1992 F-body, 1978-1987 G-body, and 1964-1972 A-body applications. The pan will also work with 1979-2004 Mustang and 1979-1986 Capri Fox bodies. The 302-3 oil pan will also clear a 4.00-inch stroke crankshaft for those running additional cubic-inches. 

You can see how much more clearance Holley’s 302-2 pan has in the front when compared to their 302-1 pan.

 

Holley’s 302-3 pan offers even more front clearance than the 302-2with the addition of 1/2-NPT ports for an oil return used on turbocharged vehicles.

Moroso

If you’re looking for an LS oil pan for a specific application like street/strip, road racing, drag racing, or even circle track, Moroso has several applications. Unlike the GM Performance and Holley units, these pans are not cast aluminum. Instead, Moroso fabricates and builds theirs out of sheet metal. According to Moroso, its steel road race oil pan (PN 20142) has a 7-quart capacity and is six-inches deep. This unit will fit 1968-72 Novas, 65-72 Chevelles, 1967-2015 Camaros and Firebirds, 1953-96 Corvettes, 1978-88 G-body, and S10/S15 truck and blazer. These pans also incorporate a race-proven diamond shape four trap door assembly and anti-slosh baffle that keeps oil in the oil pump pick-up area during road racing and drag racing.

Moroso’s oil pans are made of sheet metal and incorporate a trap door assembly with an anti-slosh baffle that keeps oil in the oil pump pick-up area during road racing and drag racing.

Custom Oil Pans

While these three manufactures will cover around 90-percent of the oil pans needed for a swap, there are a few instances where you need something special. You might have to find an experienced welder to modify one of the oil pans mentioned above for your specific application. However, there are companies out there like Sikky Manufacturing and LOJ Conversion that specialize in specific applications like Infiniti, Nissan, Toyotas, and BMWs and offer a wide array of custom oil pans. 

With the LS-swap’s popularity, the odds are pretty good that someone has already built something similar to your project. So do some research and take good measurements before purchasing your new oil pan. You will be glad you did.

Article Sources

About the author

Brian Havins

A gearhead for life, Brian is obsessed with all things fast. Banging gears, turning wrenches, and praying while spraying are just a few of his favorite things.
Read My Articles

Late Model LS Power in your inbox.

Build your own custom newsletter with the content you love from LSX Magazine, directly to your inbox, absolutely FREE!

Free WordPress Themes
LSX Magazine NEWSLETTER - SIGN UP FREE!

We will safeguard your e-mail and only send content you request.

LSX Magazine - The Late Model GM Magazine for Camaro

We'll send you the most interesting LSX Magazine articles, news, car features, and videos every week.

LSX Magazine - The Late Model GM Magazine for Camaro

LSX Magazine NEWSLETTER - SIGN UP FREE!

We will safeguard your e-mail and only send content you request.

LSX Magazine - The Late Model GM Magazine for Camaro

Thank you for your subscription.

Subscribe to more FREE Online Magazines!

We think you might like...



Classic Chevy Magazine

Drag Racing

Engine Tech

LSX Magazine - The Late Model GM Magazine for Camaro

Thank you for your subscription.

Subscribe to more FREE Online Magazines!

We think you might like...

  • Classic Chevy Magazine
  • Drag Racing
  • Engine Tech

LSX Magazine - The Late Model GM Magazine for Camaro

Thank you for your subscription.

Thank you for your subscription.

LSX Magazine - The Late Model GM Magazine for Camaro

Thank you for your subscription.

Thank you for your subscription.

Loading