This 5.3 is about to be given a full inspection. First we drain the oil. The fact that it has oil is a good sign for things to come. (Image/Tom Tharp)

In this update, we’re breaking this junkyard 5.3L V8 down to see what we’re working with and start the process of breathing new life into this trusty old workhorse.

This is an important step of the build, as tearing apart this oily beast gives us the opportunity to inspect everything and determine whether this engine is suitable for our upcoming modifications and upgrades.

After stripping this mill down to the long block, we’ll start the job of cleaning the deck surfaces and other related parts. This process also allows us to nail down which parts we can reuse, like the cylinder heads, which will be given a good once-over by a local machine shop. If everything checks out, this engine will be ready for its shiny new Summit Racing Pro LS goodies and a future blast of turbocharged fury!

I wasn’t sure what I’d find when pulling off these stock cylinder heads. (Image/Tom Tharp)
Dirty on the outside, dirty on the inside! (Image/Tom Tharp)
Pulling the factory oil pump. (Image/Tom Tharp)
Out comes the stock camshaft to make way for some future go-fast goodies. (Image/Tom Tharp)
Watch the engine teardown and preparations for the future performance upgrades.
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Author: Tom Tharp