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BUILD Broke EF turbo LS SC400 Build


Staff member
TCG Blue
May 23, 2007
Avondale, AZ
Yeah,... and what keeps fucking with me is what caused it? Was it too much amp draw, was it ambient heat, was it a combination of both? I am going to run a larger power wire, and to a different loaction, but still just want to know.

Hopefully you get it worked out. For me, electrics/wiring is like trying to learn another language :ROFLMAO:

Broke EF

TCG Elite Member
Dec 8, 2017
The sticks
Another day, and just a bit more progress. I started off by trying to get my streeing fixed. I had the wheel basically straight last year, but the quick connect was turned to the side. A mintor thing that alwats bugged me, so I figired I may as well fix that befoe I put the engine back in.

Step one was re-assebling the disconnect, extension, and wheel.


Next up I had to disconnect undo all the steering stuff so I could re-index the shaft on the rack. There was a bunch of fucking around before that point, but thats the short story.


Its MAYBE 1 spline off, but its a pain in the ass to take it all apart to try and get it that perfect. It also needs an alignment and that small amount could be corrected then anyway. SO moving on then!

After that I cleaned up some and got ready to move the car. You know its getting serious when the pushbar is hooked up!!

Lets just get into the good stuff

Back in, easy peasy!

Decided to get the radiator and fans together, and back in the car so I can stop tripping over them

Then I took the front apart again so I could get the intercooler back on. All back together.

And here is where I stopped for the day. The wife and I had some running around to do, and we grabbed some dinner. Some of you eagle eyed viewers may notice the turbo is missing. I have no idea why, but I decided to take it out today, and thats when I found some leaks.


That bolt has never been installed BTW. I am gonna fix that before it goes back in. New gasket, probably some RTV for safe measuere, and actually all bolted together correctly this time. I also found that the 3" v-band is leaking pretty bad as well.

I dont think any of the 2.5" v-bands are leaking, but I will look a bit closer at them when I put the hotside back on. I know they make gaskets for them, but I dont know if they are worth it or not.

Tomorrow the main job is getting the car up on the lift so I can get the trans in. Then I can just keep plugging away at putting everything together. Dpending on how some things go, I could probably fire it tomorrow or Sunday.

Broke EF

TCG Elite Member
Dec 8, 2017
The sticks
misaligned steering wheel....



All the rest tho :love:
If it makes you feel better, this was the starting point today. Wheels are straight....


So the end resutlt is pretty good I'd say. Plus the rest of the car is a POS, cant have this being too nice now!

Broke EF

TCG Elite Member
Dec 8, 2017
The sticks
Made some progress today, but not nearly as much as I should have. I ended up standing around most of the morning waiting on a buddy to come by and help me move the cars around. I really wanted to get that done yesterday, but I couldnt rope anyone in to help so I had to wait. Anyway once that was done I was finally ready to procrastinate some!


Looks like everything is still there, so thats something. I started by cleaninig and doing the thermal barrier.

Not my finest work, but it was kind of a pain to do such a large piece on my own. The stuff is super nice though, we will see how it holds up and how much it helps. I also took some pices I cut off and put them in the wheel well near where the downpipe runs. I dont think that was an issue, but figured why not.

The plan was to put the trans in next, so I had some work to do first. I needed to remake the line for the vent. Last year I had it running to a catch can I made, and then when I finsihed the exhaust I had to ditch that so I just looped the long line around. All fixed now.

It was around then that I again rememberd that this block was missing the dowel pins for the trans. I ordered them yesterday, but they wont be here till Sunday, so I decided to wait. I did check the converter on the flexplate, and then installed it in the trans. It dropped right in first shot. I spent a while double checking it because it literally went straight on.

I took a bit of brake and had some dinner, and then headed back out later.

I got the manifolds on, and the crossover. It went together pretty well actually!

I also did plugs and got the wires on, just took the pic before I did the wires for some reason. Next up was tackling the turbo flange.

One came out really easy. One probably fucked up the treads some, and those two are now part of the flange forever. I didnt feel like fucking with it anymore so I called it a night. I have some ideas for how to deal with it, and Ill dive into it in the morning. Thats all for now, thanks for following along!

Broke EF

TCG Elite Member
Dec 8, 2017
The sticks
Well started the say by breaking the two bolts in the flange

With that out of the way I had my morning coffee and some breakfast before moving on to bigger and better projects.

Finally decided to chage the oil on this thing. I checked it this morning, and it was off the stick so it seemed like a good time LOL. Once that was done I filled her up and cut the grass.

While I was mowing the dowel pins got delivered. So it really seemed like I was out of excuses to not put the trans in.

After MANY hours of fucking around, and getting annoyed, and questioning my entire life I fianlly got it in with some help from my neighbor.

I figured thats good enough for today so I went and hung out at the neighbors after that. I still need to connect the linkage, and actually bolt in the crossmember. Then I get to wrestle with the driveshaft/driveshaft loop.

I am gonna head by my buddy in the morning to fix up the flange, and do some other running around. I need to get gas for the welder for one. Then I can finish up the car and probably fire it Tuesday morning. Maybe tomorrow night depending how long I fuck around for.

Broke EF

TCG Elite Member
Dec 8, 2017
The sticks
WHEW what a LONG DAY!! I got up and faught traffic to go by my buddies shop to fix the flange. Saw this rig when I pulled up

With that excitement over, my buddy Lou got right to work. He just tossed it in a Bridgeport and started drilling out the two bolts.

He was able to get the one out without too much trouble. He did say that it was very hard metal and had to go slow or he would stop up the bits.

The second one faught him a bit more, and he had to mill it down flush first before drilling it out. He then drilled all 4 holes to accept a 3/8" bolt. He also flattened out the mating surfaces to help it seal better. It was pretty warped, but ist nice and flat now!

Then I did a bunch more running around while I was out, and then when I got home I started by assembling the turbo again. You can see here how bad the gasket was leaking.

I cleaned that up before I put it all back together. Now its got RTV on both sides of a gasket, and 4 bolts fully tightened down!



Ole girl is gonna get a beating this season, thats for sure :D WIth that done I got back under the car and started finishing up everything down there. Trans tighened up, crossmember in and tight, driveshaft in and tight, loop put back in.

I totally forgot about my converter bolts being short.

These are the 1.25" long ARP bolts. I ordered up some new bolts, but I did re-install these for now because the new ones wont be here till Thursday and I want to start it tomorrow. I finished up everything under the car that I can think of, and then got the turbo fully installed.

It doesnt look like a ton of progress, but it was a very late start to the day. We also had to stop by the neighbor to give thier kid a birthday gift. I am trying to take my time and do everything as nice as I can this go around. I am trying to make sure everything is fitting together tight like it should, making adjustments etc. Its still a pile of shit, but it should be better than it has been before. Maybe good enough to survive Sick Summer even :D

Broke EF

TCG Elite Member
Dec 8, 2017
The sticks
Another day full of working on this pile. Lots of small things, a few struggles, but in the end its ready to go test.

Putting in some break in oil because I still couldnt find the orings.

I cleaned up for a while, and wasnt able to find those damn orings so I went on the hunt. I tried every parts store in town, nobody had anything. So I came back and got back to work, and found 1 oring! So I wanted to see what the intercooler looked like with piping on both sides.

Ill have to get a better shot of that tomorrow when I get the car outside before I put the bumper back on. After that I finally got around to installing the intake manifold, and getting all the plumbing back in.

Random shot of it up on the lift :D

I then started on getting the wiring back in, and all the other various things.

I moved the ECU again, this works better for the wiring which is still a mess.

Aslo, I fucking hate the dashboard :( I have ideas for what I want to do later, but I wont do anything until I redo the roll cage so it fits the car much tighter.

ANYWAY, got the wiring all done for now. I will tidy it all up soon (maybe tomorrow actually) and then finished everything under the hood. I need to rewrap the exhaust, so that is going to stay off for testing.

Thats all for now. I am going to have the tuner remote in tomorrow morning to check everything over and make some small changes since its got more compression and a new cam. I am still planning on going to GLD tomorrow to see what all this time, and work, and money was for. Hopefully I dont have to immediately light it on fire! Since the track isnt open till 5, I will probably spend most of the day doing little things. Maybe I will tackle the passenger window regulator which is something I have been putting off for a year now LOL.

Broke EF

TCG Elite Member
Dec 8, 2017
The sticks
Man, another LONG ASS DAY working on this pile of shit. It started off pretty good, got on the phone with the tuner, he remoted in and checked over everything, updated the software etc. Then I tried to fire and it sputtered and died. No crank signal, fuck. So I swapped in a spare I had. No dice. I ran to the parts store and got a new one, threw it in and it had no cam signal. Just to get it going he turned off the cam sensor, and wha lah it fired up!

We let it mostly get up to temp, and then did some setup on the boost controller. Once that was done I ran to go get another cam sensor. Before I called him back I got the boost controller hooked up, and wired the dome pressure sensor. Something still isnt right with that, but I will mess with it tomorrow. Anyway he made some changes, and I also figured out that I just didnt plug in the cam sensor DUH!!! So once that was plugged in, and everything was ready I fired her up again. It came to life on the frst hit and ran like butter.

Once it got up to temp he suggested I take it for a spin and make sure everything was good. I ended up buttoning up some small things and then backed her out. I needed to add trans fluid, but once that was done I went down the street and back. I havent changed the wastegate spring setup since last time I drove it. I think its a 17lb stack, maybe more, but it only made something like 9lbs the last time out. Today, it shot to 21-22 basically instantly!! He had a hard cut at 21lbs so it kept hitting that on me, but DAMN! Shes an animal now!

I got back home and let it cool off some. Then I started it back up to add more trans fluid. While I was doing that, it burped out trans fluid (probably just an air bubble) before I got the dipstick back in. As soon as that happened It started making a terrible grinding noise, so I reached in and killed the ignition. The engine was still turning though, and I was like what the fuck?! I was thinking maybe it was just inertia but that made no sense. I then ran to the back and killed the power and it all stopped. Turns out the starter was stuck on, strange.... Its a brand new starter BTW. I then put the car up in the air and saw a decent amount of water under it. Also weird because it wasnt leaking before, and I also could not see where it was coming from. More on that mystery later. I checked the starter and the bendix was not engaged, so its not fucked. I then assume (somewhat rightly) that its the wire from the relay to the starter. This is the same wire that burned up on the fan. I changed that out, same result.

I then start investigating the relay, the wiring, etc. I determine that its the relay, great. I am using the MSD solid state relay pack, and that one is also controlling my fan. Well remember that water from before... I am pretty sure it was condensatuon in the down pipe that found a way out and onto the NOT waterproof relay board and fried it. Mind you this all took a ton of time to figure out. I was able to temp in a starter relay, and get that going. I had hoped that the fan would still work, but no dice on that. I will have to deal with that in the morning I guess.

In the morning I am going to change the oil. Then run and get a relay so I can get my one fan working for now. I am actually waiting on a relay board from Leash for the fans, which makes this even more annoying than it already is. I want to swap out my headlights, and rewire the main power for them as well. Then get the bumper on, wash it and load up for the track. I am also going to have the tuner look over the boost stuff make sure its 100% and get me a baseline set up. I am also having an issue with the trans brake I want to resolve even though I probably wont even use it tomorrow.

Well thats all for todays saga. Sorry for the boring long winded post. I fucking hate this car.

Broke EF

TCG Elite Member
Dec 8, 2017
The sticks
Today was the day! It was not an easy day, but overall I am happy. This morning I started by changing the oil. 100% should have waremed it up some, cause it took FOREVER to drain!


This is what I was draining out for anyone interested.

And puttin in the good stuff

You may notice the downpipe not where the downpipe goes. That was because I had to fix the fan wiring. I wonrt show the nightmare fuel inside the car, but here is the end result in the bay.

After it was all back together I got on the phone with my tuner and we did some work on the trans brake and bump. Something wasnt set right and it was causing me issues. So we got that worked out and I wamed up the car to get a baseline set for the bump. While it was warming up I got the trailer hooked up and ready to go!

We had to tweak the bunp a few times to get it to work how it should. The first time it was close (actually moved) the car started spraying someing and smoking. So I hung up and jumed out to see...

To be honest those caps were always temporary, and I am glad it happened in my driveway vs on the track. I decied to load her up and fix it at the track.

By this point I am pretty fucking beat. I do not do well in the heat (what am I doing drag racing), and I had been at it non stop since 8AM. This was probably around 4 or 4:30. I tried to cool off a bit and drink some water and then I hit the road.

Once I got to the track I fixed the cap, I repaced both with ones that are much better. I am still going to do something better about that, but its good for now and I have spares. I then warmed it up and added more trans fluid. For anyone keeping track I am up to 2.5 gallons or 10 quarts. I went to tech where they litteraly did not even look at anything. I handed him my card, he goes "you already have a number, so you're all set" and that was it! I checked the trans fluid again and then went to staging to bake for a while.

When I finally got up there, I did a decent burnout, probably lined up out of the grove, bumped in and waited for a bit before realizing that I wasnt bumped QUITE far enough (lights were flickering) so I bumped again and let her go.

I am car 39, left hand lane. I feel like it spun pretty much all the way though first and a bit of second. Then I think it was breaking up some in second and thrid. I havent even pulled the logs to see what it all looks like. Regardless the car felt WAY better than last year. This was only on wastegate pressure, I saw about 14lbs on the screen, but I will know more when I check the log. My one big worry was that at the end of the track I shut it all down to take off my gear. When I went to pull away the trans screached pretty badly. That and the breaking up didnt really inspire much confidence to run again. If I went with some people I 100% would have, but the thought of loading a broken car by myself with no winch, hard pass. Plus I was feeling really fucking terrible by this point. I really barely made it home, and even had to pull over once to make sure I was OK.

I made it home safe and sound, and the car was driven off the trailer and back into the garage.

So all in all a sucessful first outing. I want to make sure the trans is OK (I really hope I dont have to pull it out), and just go over the car. Obviously I want to get the front end back together, and something is coming for that tomorrow. So maybe I will have an update this weekend. Also shout out to Boostie Boostie and P PJx5x for lending me the -8AN wrench and cheering me on. Sorry I didnt hang out more, I just felt like crap and wanted to get back home.