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  1. #1
    Bald Tire
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    Outside-the-Box Power Options

    From what all I've been able to find over the last year, I think I realize how few our options are... but why not just ask anyway?

    My wife's got an 09 5speed non-Adventure. Still stock-ish with the exception of a resonator delete, Gibson cat-back, Hurst shifter, and 34" Coopers (285/75-17). She uses it as a daily driver with some occasional mountain trail riding every few weeks. After driving my built 5.3 Sierra for 14yrs followed by my current 6.7 Cummins, we both agree the LLR 5cyl is anemic at best for this truck's size (especially at our elevation: 3400'-6500') & have spent the last year looking into the best ways to get some more oomph out of it.

    Our original plan when we bought it was to swap in a lightly-cammed LH8 5.3 since I've been tinkering with vehicles for 20+yrs & did my own v6 -> 5.3 swap in the GMC... but the more I dug into it highlighted it'd still be too much headache & money to be worth jumping through all the hoops required to make it work with the AR5 (and no other transmissions work). I've read through all the threads here & on hummerforum - particularly regarding the two trucks that were successful in doing it.

    Being plenty familiar with forced induction, I then looked into blowers & turbo kits: all of which seem to have went the way of the Dodo on account of being serial engine killers (though it's unclear whether people were greedy with the boost or the engines really are that finicky considering the truck's weight).

    Not to be deterred - I even pondered the LL8 straight 6 (same engine + one cylinder)... and saw a total of one less-than-impressive, half-finished swap that didn't fully convince me of its validity due to the 4200's length & custom parts/electronics it'd still require.

    All that said: are we seriously stuck with the generic "intake, exhaust, tune" blandness to get more from these awesome trucks? It looks like the OTTP header might still be available; the rest seem to be out of production. And before anyone starts with the "just trade it for an Alpha" rhetoric... automatic transmission simply won't cut it - even for her.

    Thanks for any additional insight y'all have.

  2. #2
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    I wonder if there'd be a way to make this modded TR6060 fit?

    http://www.rsgear.com/products/off-r...-transmissions

    Might be worth getting in touch with them to see how the major measurements compare to the Aisin.

  3. #3
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    Well... start with the rest of the bolt ons first. If that doesn't satisfy your want, then you could always manual tranny swap an alpha. There's a guy on here that has done it before.

    Other than that, it's probably not worth pumping up a 5-cylinder because of the cost. I doubt anybody makes cams for them. If you rebuilt the engine with higher compression, that would help but would it be worth it? hmmm meh.
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    >>The Duke H3T Alpha Build Thread<<

    '09 Hummer H3T Alpha - "The Duke"

    - Rancho 4" Lift Kit, Texas Speed 212/218 111 LSA Camshaft, ECP 2" Aluminum Radiator, SuperModulation Dual eFans, HID Projector Headlights, 32 Gallon Auxiliary Gas Tank, Matte Black "312" Method Race Wheels, Firestone Rear Airbags, LS3 Swap in Progress...


    SOLD --- '09 White H3 - "Lil' Sparta"
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  4. #4
    Super Swamper
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    I agree with manual swapping an Alpha

    Sent from my SM-G960F using Tapatalk
    06 H3, Birch White, Lux , Cooper AT3 35s, Borla Performance Cat-back, Bilsteins front w/ 1/2" extended stops, Hunner sleeve, Air Doc w/ K&N filter, Oem Roof lights, 55W HID Headlights and 35W Fog lights.

    09 H3 V8, Arctic Silver, LS376/480 Conversion, 3000 stall, Custom E-fans, 37" KM3 tires, XD Rockstar Wheels 17x9, OEM Sliders, 40K External Trans Cooler, Bilstein 5160s front 5100 rear, O.D. Steering Bracket, 2" Body Lift, Custom Exhaust, Custom intake pipe & K&N filter, Custom PCM tune, Pioneer DVD unit, Aurora 40" LED Light Bar, 50 W HID Headlights

  5. #5
    NERD!!!

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    I went down this rabbit hole myself for a while. I loved having a manual transmission. I was able to find a few donor trucks back east that had the V8/Manual/4x4 magic combo that could carry over. They are few and far in between. Since I had a 2006 model, I would need to keep the donor in 2006-2007 or would need to perform the rewire like 06H3 did with his swap. I also looked into forced induction but feared that the Atlas engine would not be able to handle it for long.
    2017 Honda HR-V
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  6. #6
    Bald Tire
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    Has anyone looked into the older GM 4.2 V6, as found in the mid '90s S15 Jimmys/S10 Blazers? It should be short enough, and no wider that the 5.3 its based on.

  7. #7
    NERD!!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by BC backroader View Post
    Has anyone looked into the older GM 4.2 V6, as found in the mid '90s S15 Jimmys/S10 Blazers? It should be short enough, and no wider that the 5.3 its based on.
    I thought about it but I needed to keep my rig in California. I also wanted to maintain my original wire harness for the rest of the vehicle.
    2017 Honda HR-V
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  8. #8
    Street Tire
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    Stuffing a V8 into an I5 H3 is, as you have found, difficult and expensive. Hummer didn't just add the 5.3 into the existing H3 platform; there was significantly more to it than that. They actually redesigned the firewall to narrow the distance between it and the dash to get a couple more inches of space in order to fit the 5.3. The front frame rails were also modified, a new oil pan was developed, a cast iron front diff to handle the additional torque, and a new steering system was added. New engine mounts were created (of course), and unique front suspension springs and shocks were introduced to hold the weight...

    IMO, you would be better off simply keeping an eye out for an Alpha.
    Last edited by 650Hawk; 11-17-2020 at 12:44 PM.
    We don't stop playing because we grow old... We grow old because we stop playing.

  9. #9
    Bald Tire
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    i appreciate that suggestion, but swapping an auto for a manual is worse than swapping an i5 for a v8 and still leaves the same frankenstein adapter problems... while also having to change the center console, gauge cluster, and brake/clutch pedals; add hydraulics; reprogram the BCM; and probably screwing up cruise control & hill assist.

    Quote Originally Posted by BC backroader View Post
    Has anyone looked into the older GM 4.2 V6, as found in the mid '90s S15 Jimmys/S10 Blazers? It should be short enough, and no wider that the 5.3 its based on.
    for v6s, i believe you're thinking of the 4.3 that was based on the SBC 350 (a GenI engine) as opposed to the 5.3 (GenIII). both will easily fit in the engine bay.
    either way, the 09s are based on GenIV architecture, which is much more than a plug & play job with non-LS engines to get everything working like stock.

    Quote Originally Posted by 650Hawk View Post
    Stuffing a V8 into an I5 H3 is, as you have found, difficult and expensive. Hummer didn't just add the 5.3 into the existing H3 platform; there was significantly more to it than that. They actually redesigned the firewall to narrow the distance between it and the dash to get a couple more inches of space in order to fit the 5.3. The front frame rails were also modified, a new oil pan was developed, a cast iron front diff to handle the additional torque, and a new steering system was added. New engine mounts were created (of course), and unique front suspension springs and shocks were introduced to hold the weight...

    IMO, you would be better off simply keeping an eye out for an Alpha.
    yeah, i know the LH8 & LH9 were specific to the mid-size truck platform. as for H3 structural modifications, i believe the 08+ or 09+ models all had them (too expensive to make two different bodies for a low-volume vehicle), so using factory components to set a v8 under the hood is the easy part... it's physically mating it to the trans & tricking a ECM into not looking for a TCM that complicates matters & drives the budget beyond what's worth the hassle.

    for reference, the 5.3 swap in my 99 GMC was as simple as pulling the 4.3 out, swapping the engine mounts, using some braided hose to adapt the fuel lines to the rail, changing the engine harness/computer, and using a v8 clutch. everything bolted right up, worked like stock, and almost looked like a factory job. not the case with H3s.

    the problem with using one of the real truck transmissions is the fact that the shifters all mount in the wrong place to feasibly work with, they have 32spline outputs, and they use the SBC/BBC/LS bellhousing bolt pattern.
    Last edited by zebra; 11-18-2020 at 12:23 AM.

  10. #10
    Bald Tire
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    and we just ain't tuned it yet on account of wanting to solidify our plans first (otherwise, it's a waste of money/time).
    otherwise, a header's all that'd be left... if it was really even worth it.

    that said, i know y'all tout PCM of NC around here... do they do live scan tunes or just the generic canned guess? and what kinds of real gains have y'all seen from them?
    i ask because Blackbear's been tuning my stuff for over 10yrs and doing a great job with his datalogging tunes... he just ain't done that many H3s (especially stick-shift Atlas models).

  11. #11
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    The headers isnt much an improvement in an H3, unless you regularly shift above 4500 rpms.
    Most people here dont, me included. Torque down low is what we would need, not hp high up. Keep in minf headers will get rid of one of the cats, causing emission and sound issues

    Sent from my SM-G960F using Tapatalk
    06 H3, Birch White, Lux , Cooper AT3 35s, Borla Performance Cat-back, Bilsteins front w/ 1/2" extended stops, Hunner sleeve, Air Doc w/ K&N filter, Oem Roof lights, 55W HID Headlights and 35W Fog lights.

    09 H3 V8, Arctic Silver, LS376/480 Conversion, 3000 stall, Custom E-fans, 37" KM3 tires, XD Rockstar Wheels 17x9, OEM Sliders, 40K External Trans Cooler, Bilstein 5160s front 5100 rear, O.D. Steering Bracket, 2" Body Lift, Custom Exhaust, Custom intake pipe & K&N filter, Custom PCM tune, Pioneer DVD unit, Aurora 40" LED Light Bar, 50 W HID Headlights

  12. #12
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    This might be of interest to you.

    https://www.topspeed.com/cars/car-ne...-ar174949.html
    http://www.trucktrend.com/truck-revi...zer-twin-turbo

    GM built a prototype twin turbo 4.2L for the Trailblazer SS before they decided to go with the V8. You might be able to carry some of that knowledge over to the 3.7L.

    As an alternative, downsize to an EcoTec turbo 4 from the Solstice GXP. They used the same AR5 transmission we have, and seem to have a pretty good aftermarket.

  13. #13
    Baja
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    The new baby diesel in a box swap would work very nicely. They already provide adapters for manual trans and it has all its own stand alone system.

    In case you are unfamiliar with the 2.5r just look it up. New motor mounts, different manual trans and bob's your uncle.
    Last edited by Happy Hummer; 11-18-2020 at 01:48 AM.

  14. #14
    Super Swamper
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    Buick V6 turbo from an 80s Grand National. Compact, gobs of torque, injected, works with a manual trans.

  15. #15
    a.k.a. "The Jackal"

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    Id just swap a 5.3,6.0,6.2 into it and keep the manual trans. It has been done before. Easiest and most reliable route IMO, your truck is already setup for the manual.
    Squeaky3: 06 H3 ALPHA D70 front/Eaton HO72 rear 5.13 gears, custom crossmember for long arms, lockers, 4:1 T-case, v8 swap, hybrid cage, Warn 12k Custom bumpers....do it all vehicle

    "H3 front axles are like drunk cheerleaders....just use em until they get mouthy...then toss em and get another." -anonymous



 

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