Jan 8, 2020 update to the Chevrolet Corvette Z06 project car

Project Z06: Adding a Dry Sump

Those following our social media may have seen pictures of our Corvette’s entire driveline separated from the body of the car. As we get ready to install our LS3 into the chassis, we figured this was the perfect time to address one of the big supposed shortcomings of the LS architecture: oil control. LS engines are notorious for drying out the oil pickup during hard cornering, starving the engine of the slippery juice, and, as a result, going kablooey.

We were in no mood for kablooey.

Our solution was to convert to a dry sump system, specifically a three-stage external pump setup from Aviaid. This configuration uses a single pump with a  “pressure” stage, which sucks oil out of the remotely located holding tank and squirts it into the engine under pressure, and two “scavenge” stages which vacuum oil from the bottom of the engine and keep that tank full and ready to provide an uninterrupted oil flow to the pressure stage.

This pump simply replaces the a/c compressor, and while Aviaid will happily provide a pump which will mount elsewhere and allow you to retain a/c, we decided it was time to simplify the plumbing under the hood and admit to ourselves that going fast was more important that not sweating in grid.

The Aviaid “LS-C” kit includes much of what you need to get up and running, which means you get the pump, a custom-made bracket, a drive system using a cogged, timing belt-style drive, a 10-quart sump tank, remote filter and inlet adapter. 

We had already installed a 10% underdrive ATI Superdamper balancer, and Aviaid even has a custom drive hub built for direct use with this damper. 

Installation of the hard parts while the engine is out of the car is fairly straightforward. This three-stage pump requires removal of the stock oil pump, which can be easily accessed behind the timing cover once the balancer is removed. With the new balancer in place, you simply need to install the pump using the custom bracket, install the supplied oil pan, and the inlet adapter and the motor is ready to plumb. That will be next on our list.

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AlcantaraFTW
AlcantaraFTW New Reader
1/8/20 9:49 a.m.

It's generally recommended to avoid any crank pulleys that have different dampening or drive than OEM in the Subaru community, is that not the case here? I'd imagine that an LS3 V8 would have a lot better inherent balance than an EJ257.

Papabear
Papabear New Reader
1/8/20 10:34 a.m.

How deep is the front of that pan? Looks thinner than when I looked last. They don't have dimension drawings on there site.

JG Pasterjak
JG Pasterjak Production/Art Director
1/8/20 11:09 a.m.
Papabear said:

How deep is the front of that pan? Looks thinner than when I looked last. They don't have dimension drawings on there site.

I'll measure it for you when I get to the shop.

Olemiss540
Olemiss540 New Reader
1/8/20 3:59 p.m.

What are you planning to do with PVC/vapor control? Cap it all of and run breather on the tank (allowing aviad to pull vacuum) or run back to intake through catch cans to use manifold vacuum?

Interested as we are tracking a similar setup and are at the stage we are considering capping it all off to reduce oil injection with that seems like high vacuum causing leaks/etc..... HELP!

Patientzero
Patientzero Reader
1/8/20 4:40 p.m.

In reply to Olemiss540 :

You just need to vent the tank to atmosphere.  Crankcase "vacuum" is a good thing.  It not only increases horsepower but it helps prevent oil pushing out of seals.  When you make positive crankcase pressures that's when you start having oil leaks.

Olemiss540
Olemiss540 New Reader
1/8/20 4:49 p.m.
Patientzero said:

In reply to Olemiss540 :

You just need to vent the tank to atmosphere.  Crankcase "vacuum" is a good thing.  It not only increases horsepower but it helps prevent oil pushing out of seals.  When you make positive crankcase pressures that's when you start having oil leaks.

We are just not finding much luck with regards to the amount of vacuum a 3 stage pump draws, as most common are the 4/5 stage pump it seemed. Does the 3 stage provide sufficient vacuum to ensure the rings get the vacuum needed without having times of positive pressure that may cause leaks?

I am lost since 3 stage is not as common a drysump setup and it seems every pro we contact has the opposite opinion of the last pro we purchased fancy catch can setups from. Frustrated. 

Patientzero
Patientzero Reader
1/8/20 5:10 p.m.

We used this exact kit on this car with good results.

http://www.superchevy.com/features/1704-extracting-corner-carving-potential-from-a-2001-corvette-z06

 

There are compromises made to this kit to make it "bolt on" and able to fit it in the factory AC compressor location. This setup doesn't even pull from the heads. A 4 or 5 stage pump would absolutely reduce crankcase pressure more than this kit but it's not going to clear the headers/exhaust manifold.  This is more of a fix to keep the sump from running dry than all the benefits of a true dry sump.  I look at this as the next step up from an Accusump but not on the level of a 5 stage Dailey system or something similiar.

I would recommend you vent the valve covers to the dry sump tank and vent the tank to atmosphere via a catch can.

wearymicrobe
wearymicrobe UberDork
1/8/20 5:16 p.m.

Are you mounting lower in the engine bay as well?

 

If not a swinging oil pan works wonders in the Viper world and at 25% the cost I would imagine. 

JG Pasterjak
JG Pasterjak Production/Art Director
1/8/20 5:44 p.m.
Patientzero said:

We used this exact kit on this car with good results.

http://www.superchevy.com/features/1704-extracting-corner-carving-potential-from-a-2001-corvette-z06

 

There are compromises made to this kit to make it "bolt on" and able to fit it in the factory AC compressor location. This setup doesn't even pull from the heads. A 4 or 5 stage pump would absolutely reduce crankcase pressure more than this kit but it's not going to clear the headers/exhaust manifold.  This is more of a fix to keep the sump from running dry than all the benefits of a true dry sump.  I look at this as the next step up from an Accusump but not on the level of a 5 stage Dailey system or something similiar.

I would recommend you vent the valve covers to the dry sump tank and vent the tank to atmosphere via a catch can.

Nice to hear someone else had success with it.

Where did you guys mount the sump tank? Looks like it will fit in the space vacated by the battery if we trim the mount for the fusebox off the frame, but I'm wondering if it wouldn't be easier to just put the thing in the trunk where there's plenty of room and you pick up even more oil capacity with a longer hose.

Patientzero
Patientzero Reader
1/8/20 5:48 p.m.

In reply to JG Pasterjak :

In the factory battery location.

 

On a '71 Camaro we did with a LS9 we put the dry sump tank in the trunk and ran stainless hardlines under the car with AN hoses at the ends for the connections.  This was on a show car though, not a track car.

JG Pasterjak
JG Pasterjak Production/Art Director
1/8/20 5:54 p.m.

In reply to Patientzero :

So, how do you feel about a trunk mount in a C5, using -16 from the tank outlet to the pump? It's still an aggregate downhill run from the tank to the pump in that configuration. If we went that way, we were going to run the lines along the right side sill and through the firewall.

Patientzero
Patientzero Reader
1/8/20 6:00 p.m.

In reply to JG Pasterjak :

I don't think you'd have a problem.  Just mount the tank as high as possible so gravity helps keep the pump primed.

JG Pasterjak
JG Pasterjak Production/Art Director
1/8/20 6:10 p.m.
Patientzero said:

In reply to JG Pasterjak :

I don't think you'd have a problem.  Just mount the tank as high as possible so gravity helps keep the pump primed.

Cool. Yeah by our math the main feed will have to travel uphill a few inches from the outlet of the pump to the floor of the main part of the car, but it never rises above where the top of the oil level would be. The top of the tank is a good 18 vertical inches above the level of the pump.

KentF
KentF Reader
1/8/20 9:41 p.m.

Can you run a dry (or damp?) sump system on a stock oil pan? No one makes a dry sump pan for my engine (Ford 3.8). What would be the disadvantages? Any examples?

z31maniac
z31maniac MegaDork
1/9/20 6:58 a.m.
AlcantaraFTW said:

It's generally recommended to avoid any crank pulleys that have different dampening or drive than OEM in the Subaru community, is that not the case here? I'd imagine that an LS3 V8 would have a lot better inherent balance than an EJ257.

That's the kids who put lightweight pulleys on the engine that don't have a damper. 

This is different.

Olemiss540
Olemiss540 New Reader
1/10/20 8:41 a.m.

Actually, LS blocks are known to be very sensitive to dampener systems which is why its ATI or stock ONLY.

JG,

Hope you updated your timing chain setup to a c5r chain as we have lost 2 engines due to snapped chains road racing. Lost one due to oil viscosity (I believe) from running too thin of oil.

 

 

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