97 chevy Tahoe 5 speed, axles and more swapped from 97 k1500 z71

CMartin87

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Feb 26, 2016
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NY
#1
Last week I bought a 97 Chevy Tahoe. The engine tranny and transfer case were all recently rebuilt I got it cheap only 800 dollars because its got frame problems but I got a welder and can fix that. I absolutely hate chevy auto trannys I have had a lot of them give out on me. so even tho it's got a rebuilt tranny, I went on Craigslist that night and the next day bought a 97 k1500 z71 5 speed truck with a snapped frame for 400 dollars. I have done a lot of standard tranny swaps on 70s and 80s cars and trucks but never anything from the 90s with the hydraulic clutch and all the electronics from the 4l60e I am unsure about alot of things on this project i started a thread on tahoe Yukon forum but haven't got a lot of reply from that site so I am hoping people on this forum will be more willing and able to help answer some of my questions.

tahoeyukonforum.com/threads/97-tahoe-5-speed-swap.78960/

I don't know how to post pictures on this site yet but I out pictures on the other thread can anyone tell from them pictures if I have a nv4500 or nv3500? Also how do I identify what size axle I got and what gear ratio I got? Also will using the trucks computer in the Tahoe keep the check engine light from coming on? also anyone got any info or links about converting the 4wd to floor shift? I don't trust the push button system and I got the parts to do it on the donor truck just not sure about the wiring part of it. Any help or info is greatly appreciated.
 
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CMartin87

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Feb 26, 2016
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NY
#2
Re: 97 chevy Tahoe 5 speed, axles and more swapped from 97 k1500 z71

Does anybody know if the z71s fuel tank will fit in the Tahoe? The guy i bought the Tahoe from said the filler neck was bad and he bought one but didn't install it. it's sitting on the seat still. and he said he thought it got moisture in it or something because he had replaced the fuel filter 3 or 4 times in last couple of months and the Tahoe is acting like the filter is plugged again. If there is sludge or anything in the tank plugging the filter that much I might want to change tanks if it will fit. If it won't fit I will just change the filter again and deal with it. I don't got money to buy a tank rite now.
 
May 8, 2014
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"The triad", NC
#3
Re: 97 chevy Tahoe 5 speed, axles and more swapped from 97 k1500 z71

Does anybody know if the z71s fuel tank will fit in the Tahoe? The guy i bought the Tahoe from said the filler neck was bad and he bought one but didn't install it. it's sitting on the seat still. and he said he thought it got moisture in it or something because he had replaced the fuel filter 3 or 4 times in last couple of months and the Tahoe is acting like the filter is plugged again. If there is sludge or anything in the tank plugging the filter that much I might want to change tanks if it will fit. If it won't fit I will just change the filter again and deal with it. I don't got money to buy a tank rite now.
Drop the tank, fill it with a little kerosene or gas and buy a couple of boxes of cheap copper-clad BB's. Roll that tank around in your lap until your arms are sore and then dump the contents. Rinse with isopropal alcohol or straight moonshine, doesn't matter. Install and enjoy your "new" gas tank.
 

CMartin87

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Feb 26, 2016
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NY
#4
Re: 97 chevy Tahoe 5 speed, axles and more swapped from 97 k1500 z71

I will have to try that. Changing the filter alot would be annoying hopefully that will clear out what ever is in there.
 

CMartin87

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Feb 26, 2016
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#5
Re: 97 chevy Tahoe 5 speed, axles and more swapped from 97 k1500 z71

Crazy idea here. The 80s square bodies single cab short bed trucks had the same 117.5 inch wheelbase. They have solid axles and I know of atleast 2 sitting in peices in family members yards. Has anyone ever heard of anybody putting a 90s tahoe on a k10 frame? With the rust and damage to my frame I am wondering if swapping the body onto a k10 and welding up custom body mounts would be easier? And it would give me a solid axle like I want. The motor mounts will work but I will probably have to make a tranny cross member? My rear drive shaft will work but idk bout front drive shaft? I tried searching bout this kind of frame swap but could only find people putting square body's on 90s frames not other way around. I will look into people putting 5 speeds into 80s trucks next to see if I can get answers or ideas about the tranny cross member and front drive shaft. Any opinions on if I should try to do that? 1 other question. The Tahoe has a sway bar when I put the z71 axle on should I cut the sway bar brackets off stock axle and weld onto the z71 axle or just lose the sway bar?
 

CMartin87

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Feb 26, 2016
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NY
#6
Re: 97 chevy Tahoe 5 speed, axles and more swapped from 97 k1500 z71

Square body's had passenger side drop transfer cases rite? So if I do end up using a 80s frame I would have to find a passenger side drop transfer case. Could I use the transfer case from an 80s truck with the z71s transmission? The transmission has a 32 spline output how hard is it to change the input of the transfer case? Would i be ableableuse the z71s transfer case input in a 80s passenger drop transfer case?
 

CMartin87

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Feb 26, 2016
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NY
#7
Re: 97 chevy Tahoe 5 speed, axles and more swapped from 97 k1500 z71

Weather has been ****ty snowy windy and freezing so haven't been able to do much but I started pulling small parts off the inside of the z71 today. In hooked the shifter almost got the 4wd shifter out but the bottom bolt is being stubborn turns easy most of the way but locks up tight when it's almost all the way out. I left it to soak in pb blaster then pulled dash bezel and gauge cluster then the steering column started pulling the clutch pedal out but there's one bolt that is being blocked by the wiring harness and still trying to figure out how to unhook the harness so I can move it and get that bolt out not much progress but it's atleast a start. didn't get any pictures using the phone as a flashlight to see under the dash killed the battery.
 

CMartin87

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Feb 26, 2016
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#8
Re: 97 chevy Tahoe 5 speed, axles and more swapped from 97 k1500 z71

Can't wait till warm weather so I can get more done on this project. Hopefully the weather idiots are right and next week will be in the 60s. Till then I keep doing little things on it. Changed the computer to the z71s computer changed the gauge cluster so it no longer says prnd321. And changed the steering column. Also removed the electric 4wd buttons from the dash.



After I changed the computer and gauge cluster I started it and let it run for a while before I changed the column. Only thing I did after that is change the column. After I changed the column it won't start it's got power to everything and everything else works but it won't crank over. My best guess is there was a safety switch in the old column that used to tell it the truck is in Park or neutral to let it crank. And by switching columns it's not getting that signal? Does that make sense or could it be something else? If that is the problem should I figure out what wires are causing it to do that and hook them to the clutch pedal switch or neutral safety switch? The automatic steering column had a little box with a rod that connected it to the shifter and had two wires that go into the main plug. Is that the park/neutral safety switch or the reverse light switch?
 

CMartin87

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Feb 26, 2016
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NY
#9
Re: 97 chevy Tahoe 5 speed, axles and more swapped from 97 k1500 z71

And I know it all needs to be cleaned I will do that later lol
 

CMartin87

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Feb 26, 2016
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#10
Re: 97 chevy Tahoe 5 speed, axles and more swapped from 97 k1500 z71

Now that I figured out how to get pictures to work on this site here is some of the Tahoe and the donor z71 starting with the nv3500













 

CMartin87

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Feb 26, 2016
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#11
Re: 97 chevy Tahoe 5 speed, axles and more swapped from 97 k1500 z71

I have been searching online that thing on the column that connects to the shifter is the interlock that makes it so you can't shift out of park without hitting the brake pedal. And without that and the column shifter hooked up the 4l60e won't lock into Park so it was in reverse. TheThe 4l60e has a gear position sensor the left side of the tranny by the shift linkage and that is also it's neutral safety switch and with it basically in reverse the switch wouldn't let it crank over. I pulled it out 1 click so it's now in neutral and it started right up. I will wire the reverse light switch and neutral safety switch from the nv3500 to the wiring that goes to that gear indicator switch when it comes time to wire this project. Still got to figure out how to wire the cruise control kill on the clutch pedal everything I read says to just do it in series with the brakes cruise control kill wiring. So that's what I will try first.
 

CMartin87

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Feb 26, 2016
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NY
#12
Re: 97 chevy Tahoe 5 speed, axles and more swapped from 97 k1500 z71

Made some progress today. We got the nv3500 out of the z71 and cut the z71's floor out to use as a template so i know exactly were to cut the Tahoe floor.




 

CMartin87

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Feb 26, 2016
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#13
Re: 97 chevy Tahoe 5 speed, axles and more swapped from 97 k1500 z71



That is the wiring pinout for the 4l60e range selector / neutral safety switchs 7 wire connector. There's also a 4 wire connector but none of those wires are needed. For a 5 speed conversion we need pins C E F and G on the seven wire connector. Pins G and E are for the neutral safety switch or clutch pedal start switch you can either connect some wire to them and run it into the cab and connect it to the clutch pedal switch or pull them back out of the loom then thru the firewall and connect to clutch pedal switch. I plan to do it the second way to lessen the number of splices. Pins C and F are the reverse switch wires the reverse switch is on the left side of the nv3500 mines wires are the same colors green and pink cut the wires off the 4l60e range selector plug and connect them to the nv3500 reverse switch plug. The second picture is wrong according to the pinout picture the reverse wires use the other green wire between the neutral safety wires. but the pinout might be wrong and this might be wright I will post which one is rite when i wire mine up.That's what of the wiring i have figured out so far. Still got to figure out if the wires on the transfer case are the same or if they are different. On the transfer case is the vss sensor for the speedometer and a 4wd indicator sensor that tells the front diff to engage and turns on the 4wd indicator lights in the cab telling you its in 4wd. I am hoping the plugs will be the same between transfer cases but if not i will post what i have to do to get them hooked up.
 
Jun 29, 2008
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Harviell, MO
#14
Re: 97 chevy Tahoe 5 speed, axles and more swapped from 97 k1500 z71

Nice, I am looking forward to seeing this completed. I love a 5 speed.

I sought out a 5 speed Z71 because my last one was automatic and it left me stranded.