More Drifting Trailblazer SS Episodes

Carcass Featured Projects

Carcass Builds

Parts Used In This Episode

Summit Racing
DeatschWerks Fuel Injectors
Summit Racing
Electronic Exhaust Cutout System
Summit Racing
OMP Racing TRS-E Racing Seats
Summit Racing
Vortech Complete Supercharger Kit
Summit Racing
Vortech Power Adder
Summit Racing
Wilwood Hand Brake Lever Assemblies
American Powertrain Systems
Tremec Magnum 6-Speed Manual Transmission
Continental Tire
General Tire G-MAX RS Tires
Ceramic Boot Wires
Holley Terminator X Max
Street Fire Coil Packs
Matco Tools
MATCO Tools are the Official Tool Supplier to PowerNation
PowerTrain Products
Chevy 6.0 LQ9 Stage 2 LS Engine
The Industrial Depot
Tools, Hardware, Shop Supplies
Tom Wood's Custom Drive Shafts
Custom Driveshaft

Episode Transcript

(Jeremy)>> You're watching Powernation!

(Jimmy)>> Today on Carcass we're ripping through the clipping points.

(Jeremy)>> But before we can do that we're adding some go fast goodies to push us past the 500 horsepower threshold.

(Narrator)>> When you want to build something different you turn to Carcass. They transform cars and trucks into one of a kind builds. From street to mud, if you dream it they can build it. This is Carcass, a non-traditional speed shop. [ MUSIC ]

(Jimmy)>> Our burnout king is getting into the final stages of this build, and this 4 door drifting Trailblazer is almost ready to meet the clipping points, but it's been a long journey to get to this stage.

(Jeremy)>> This project began as a four door stock Trailblazer SS. A very capable vehicle from the factory, but we made some tweaks to make it drift ready. We started by shedding some weight and adding a roll cage that will protect up to four passengers.

(Jimmy)>> The dash, or lack thereof, looked interesting at this point but we made some mods to fit the original dash back in the vehicle. We followed this up with some proper racing seats we got at Summit Racing and a custom center console we fabbed up.

(Jeremy)>> Now every drift car, or in our case truck, needs a hand brake. So we added one we ordered from Summit Racing to the center console and plumbed it to the rear brakes. At this point we were almost done with our interior.

(Jimmy)>> That's right, to get it buttoned up we needed to make some changes to our drivetrain. So we swapped our tired 230,000 mile engine for a beefed up LQ-9 from Powertrain Products. This was paired with a Tremec Magnum 6 speed manual transmission from American Powertrain.

(Jeremy)>> And since this is a manual conversion Summit Racing sent over a clutch pedal for the cab, and we built the one off shifter that we're pretty proud of.

(Jimmy)>> A driveshaft from Tom Woods custom driveshafts finished off our drivetrain. So we turned our attention to the exterior of our family size drift truck. We shipped off our Trailblazer to have it wrapped by a local shop. Then Jeremy and I got straight to work on the hood.

(Jeremy)>> We wanted to give the front end of our Trailblazer a unique look. So we laid down some carbon fiber. This was something new for both Jimmy and myself, and we couldn't be more pleased with the way that it turned out.

(Jimmy)>> That's awesome! The hood turned out great, and combined with our newly wrapped vehicle our Trailblazer SS has transformed into a proper looking drift truck.

(Jeremy)>> You would think this is the end but we needed to make a few more mods to get this vehicle track ready. We overhauled the front suspension with some custom upper control arms giving our General Tires some better grip during a slide.

(Jimmy)>> And we added an electronic exhaust cutout we picked up at Summit Racing, which will allow us to crank up the volume and turn some heads at the track.

(Jeremy)>> Now our truck is gonna roar down the track but we want to add a little bit of whine to that rumble. So we picked up a power adder from the guys over at Vortec Superchargers, but before we can add all of that we want to upgrade our fuel and ignition system. We'll be upgrading the fuel pump in the back along with the fuel lines. Then up front we'll be adding some upgraded injectors, new coil packs, a standalone engine management system, the Holley Terminator-X to be exact, and finally a supercharger from Vortec that will push us to the red line limit.

(Jimmy)>> Now we're going to work back to front, attacking the fuel pump first. We'll need to disconnect all the fuel lines including the fill neck hose before we bring in a transmission jack to assist in removing the tank. [ MUSIC ]

(Jeremy)>> From here we can remove the retaining ring, and carefully remove the stock pump. [ MUSIC ]

(Jimmy)>> With a quick measurement...

(Jeremy)>> 8 inches.

(Jimmy)>> ...we can remove the fuel pump hanger rod from the assembly, and cut it to length on the band saw. [ saw buzzing ]

(Jeremy)>> The hanger rod is then reattached to the pump so we can cut the inlet and return lines to their proper length. We'll tackle the inlet first using the brown covered inlet spout for reference.

(Jimmy)>> With it trimmed down we can connect the pump to the inlet hose and add the fuel sock.

(Jeremy)>> Lastly we'll trim the return line so it's not too long. Now our new pump differs from our o-e pump in two different ways. First off this is a return style system, which sends unused fuel back to the tank. Our original only supplied just enough to keep the engine running. So there was no need for a return line but it isn't enough for the power upgrades we want to add. Second the original pump ran at 250 liters per hour at 58 p-s-i and this one provides 450 liters at 90 p-s-i. So a huge flow increase over the stock one, and plenty for the power adder we're throwing at it.

(Jimmy)>> We're adding the fuel lines to the fuel pump now because they will be nearly impossible to reach when the tank is reinstalled. We'll also connect the power to the pump prior to installing. [ drill humming ]

(Jimmy)>> With the tank installed we can move on to our fuel lines. We'll need to install a pressure regulator between the engine and fuel pump.

(Jeremy)>> With that in place we can attach the return line, inlet line, and the line that will feed the engine. Holley sent us all of our dash six hoses and fittings.

(Jimmy)>> With the pressure regulator plumbed up we can feed our supply line up to the engine, snaking it along the bottom and up through the engine bay. We'll gauge its length at the fuel rail and cut it to length.

(Jeremy)>> All there's left to do is add the quick connect fitting from Holley and make the connection at the fuel rail, supplying enough fuel for our power adder.

(Jimmy)>> With everything run to the engine bay we can tackle some of the upgrades on our engine before we get to the Vortec supercharger. We'll need to remove a few components. Some of these will get upgrades and some of these items will get completely replaced.

(Jeremy)>> The intake is removed followed by all the coil packs. The throttle body is one of those items that will get replaced. The new one will allow for more air to pass through it.

(Jimmy)>> The last thing to be removed is the fuel rail. It houses all the injectors, which need to be replaced. The new Dietchwerks injectors we picked up from Summit Racing dot com have a higher flow rate, providing more fuel for our supercharged engine.

(Jeremy)>> The coil packs we removed are also getting an upgrade. We swapped them out with some street fire coils we got from Holley performance.

(Jimmy)>> With these all swapped out we'll reinstall the injectors, slide in our coil packs, bolting everything in place.

(Jeremy)>> And since we upgraded our coil packs we opted to go with some ceramic boot wires we picked up from Holley.

(Jimmy)>> We'll follow these up with a new throttle body we picked up from Summit Racing, which will pair nicely with our supercharger.

(Jeremy)>> All there's left to do is wire everything up. We'll need to make some connections to each of the fuel injectors, each of the coil packs, and plug in all the appropriate sensors.

(Jimmy)>> All of this is tied into the Holley Terminator-X Max e-c-u which we mounted to the inner fender.

(Jeremy)>> Coming up we install the mac daddy of upgrades.

(Jimmy)>> That's right, it's time to hear the whine of a Vortec supercharger.

(Jeremy)>> Our drift Trailblazer has gotten all the fuel and spark upgrades it needs and now it's time to add a proper supercharger.

(Jimmy)>> The blower we picked out is a centrifugal Vortec supercharger that pairs with LS engines. It comes with all the spacers and piping you need for the install. This kit was not actually designed for our Trailblazer. It's designed for a C-5 or C-6 Corvette. So we anticipate some modifications to get this thing to work. To kick start this install we have to do some disassembly first. The entire front drive essentially has to come off. This includes things like the alternator, front drive bracket, and the water pump.

(Jeremy)>> With everything pretty much off the front of the engine we can move on to the Vortec kit. Now there's a number of things we need to set on there before we can actually install the blower. We'll start with the harmonic damper. In this application this part will have a lot more force applied by the belt than usual. To keep it from spinning on the crankshaft we'll use a drill bit with a cheap depth guide and the provided drilling jig from the blower kit to key the damper to the crankshaft. The provided pin will keep these clocked in the same position.

(Jimmy)>> With that keyed we can add the damper bolt and torque it down to 250 pound feet.

(Jeremy)>> Alright step one's done. Let's put the bracket on. That's not gonna work.

(Jimmy)>> I think if we maybe cut it right here and then if we need to we'll re-drill and tap a hole for the support and put it somewhere in there.

(Jeremy)>> Now we need to make a small mod to the bracket that holds on the supercharger. I'm not too worried about making this cut because this is a beefy bracket and there are a ton of bolts that hold this together. Let's do a test fit. Let's see how this is all gonna play out.

(Jimmy)>> Looking better already.

(Jeremy)>> We've got clearance Clarence.

(Jimmy)>> That's one hurdle out of the way, and that one small mod works so far but now we need to see if the supercharger is actually gonna fit.

(Jeremy)>> Let's see how this fits then. Nope that's not a good sign. Now we need to reiterate that this kit is not made for our Trailblazer SS. So we've got to make another mod but that's as simple as grabbing a cutoff wheel and getting rid of a little bit of the inner fender. Let's see how close we are or aren't. Where's that go there?

(Jimmy)>> Think we got a winner?

(Jeremy)>> I think we did.

(Jimmy)>> With a few simple mods the supercharger is now resting where it should be but we still have a lot to do before we can call this job done. The pulley for the supercharger still needs to be installed along with the tensioner pulley, which will keep the belt from flying off. With the installation of the remaining pulleys we can finally test fit everything to make sure it all lines up.

(Jeremy)>> That's a good test fit right there.

(Jimmy)>> Yeah everything looks like it lines up. So we can go back, tighten everything on this system, try to get the front of the motor back together.

(Jeremy)>> A few odds and ends remain. We need to hook up the oil feed line to the supercharger, the Corvette power steering pump needs to go in, the alternator needs to be installed, and we'll slap on the water pump.

(Jimmy)>> With the front drive buttoned up we'll add the charge pipe, which will send all that boost to the engine.

(Jeremy)>> With the front end going together on our Trailblazer we're ready to lay down some numbers on the dyno. [ engine revving ]


(Jimmy)>> We came down to visit our buddies in Engine Power because they have a chassis dyno that's gonna allow us to properly measure how much horsepower we're making at the tire. [ MUSIC ]

(Jeremy)>> Alright guys it's altogether. What do you think?

(Pat)>> I really like it, and I'm digging the hot charge. That's old school.

(Mike)>> This thing being a GM s-u-v guy I love it, but it reminds me of a modern day Mad Max truck. The wicked graphics, the blower with no intercooler. What you guys did inside this truck with the cage and the safety features and everything on it, I'm a huge fan.

(Jeremy)>> That was all Jimmy's idea.

(Jimmy)>> I'm just excited because I've never done anything boosted and I have no idea what kind of power it's gonna make.

(Pat)>> Well these things are decent from the factory right, and this one sounded like it had a little bit of a cam in it from Powertrain Products. With a little bit of boost you're gonna be surprised.

(Mike)>> Hot charge, what do you think, 15, 20 horse per pound of boost?

(Pat)>> Yeah we're not used to doing a lot of hot charge stuff. So we're gonna find out.

(Jeremy)>> Well speaking of finding out I get to sit in the drivers seat but I've never done this before. So you guys are just gonna have to.

(Pat)>> We're gonna babysit you, but it starts off with getting in.

(Mike)>> Go plant your butt in the hot seat. [ MUSIC ]

(Jeremy)>> Alright I'm in the drivers seat, first time, what do I do?

(Pat)>> You're gonna take the brake off. You're gonna get it up rolling and you're gonna get it all the way up into fourth gear, and then at your start r-p-m you're gonna stab the throttle and hit the green button, and that's how it acquires data. You're gonna run it up to your top r-p-m, whatever you want to stop at, and then you take your foot off the gas. Do not hit the vehicle's brake lever. The red is the brake. So you take your foot off the gas pedal and then clutch and click it up into neutral, and then when you stop we'll acquire the data. The biggest thing is it's gonna be a little jumpy, it's gonna be a little hard to get used to. Just don't hit the brake pedal on the vehicle, that's it.

(Jeremy)>> Foot away from that.

(Pat)>> Run it up to your r-p-m and make sure you have it all the way to the floor. It's easy when you first start to not push it all the way to the floor. That's what you do on this thing, and you don't have to steer. All you have to look at is your tach. You'll get it. It'll take a little bit to get used to but you'll be fine.

(Jeremy)>> We'll get it. [ engine starting ]

(Pat)>> Alright you ready?

(Jeremy)>> Let's try it!

(Pat)>> Take your brake off and let her buck.

(Jeremy)>> Red button's off, first gear, here we go! [ MUSIC ] [ engine revving ] [ MUSIC ]

(Pat)>> Okay are you ready? First hit 493.99, torque is 465, and that is at 5.47 pounds.

(Jeremy)>> We've still got more to go!

(Pat)>> There's plenty more to go.

(Mike)>> Next run what I want you to do is bring the starting point of the sweep up. So start at 3,000, and you pulled it to 6,000 that time, pull it to 6,500.

(Jeremy)>> Okay!

(Mike)>> Alright it's all you. [ engine revving ]

(Pat)>> Oh baby, that wasn't bad right there! Yeah there it is, 518, 487 pound feet. Dude that's nice!

(Jimmy)>> On our second run we gained 25 horsepower and 22 pound feet of torque, but I think a third run will do us some good because the Terminator-X kit is still doing some self-learning. [ engine revving ]

(Pat)>> That's pretty nasty right there.

(Mike)>> That's it!

(Pat)>> Nice, nice, nice, 529 horse, it broke 500 on torque, 505.89 pound feet.

(Jeremy)>> Bam son, bam!

(Pat)>> I would say that's as close to probably making 600 at the crank as you can get.

(Jeremy)>> I think it's gonna be a handful the way it is. I think we're good. What do you think Jimmy?

(Jimmy)>> I'd say so yeah.

(Pat)>> Remember there's no such thing as too much power just not enough driver.

(Jeremy)>> That's totally me.

(Pat)>> No that's in my case!

(Mike)>> Another good dyno day!

(Jimmy)>> Appreciate fellas!

(Pat)>> Dyno days are my favorite!

(Mike)>> 529!

(Jimmy)>> Up next we take 529 ponies to the track and wear out some tires through the clipping points.


(Jeremy)>> It's a lovely day here in Bowling Green, Kentucky, and we're here at NCM Motorsports Park where they have an incredible road course and a giant paddock area for us to do some testing and tuning.

(Jimmy)>> And members of their driving club get 32 days a year dedicated just to them to really open up the throttle and have some fun with their own vehicles, and that's exactly what we're gonna do today.

(Jeremy)>> We laid down just over 100 cones so we can take out our 529 horsepower Trailblazer for a little spin.

(Jimmy)>> We also have a stack of tires on stand-by with all the tools to do a quick change out because we're gonna be laying down a lot of rubber today. [ MUSIC ] Alright so we're gonna be taking a page out of Josh Robinson's drifting 101 lesson that we had earlier in this build, and we're gonna take it kinda easy. We're gonna start off with some controlled slides, basically do doughnuts around a cone, so we can get a feel for how this Trailblazer is handling.

(Jeremy)>> I'm absolutely in love with thing being a six speed. Having all that control with the clutch and the added horsepower made everything handle super tight, not to mention the General Tires are really holding up to the abuse. [ engine revving ]

(Jimmy)>> Good job dude!

(Jeremy)>> My head's kind of a spinning mess right now. It steers really nice, got all the power in the world. You know I think I'm gonna take a break so I can get my head together. Why don't you hop in here?

(Jimmy)>> Sure! Getting back behind the wheel it felt completely different. The camber adjustments we made with the upper control arms really made it feel like I had some authority when whipping around the cone.

(Jeremy)>> Now Jimmy and I are nowhere near the skill level of Formula Drift drivers, but with a quick tire change we're gonna give it a go on the track.

(Jimmy)>> Let's go over the rules for our drifting challenge and see how the points will be awarded.

(Jeremy)>> And to keep this unbiased our producer's gonna be the one awarding and tallying up the points. Now the first set of points are gonna be who can maintain the closest proximity to our clipping zones. There's four clipping zones, one point per zone.

(Jimmy)>> Second, one point will be awarded in regards to style. Whoever can go through the course most gracefully maintaining the most angle while transitioning in and out of the turns.

(Jeremy)>> And the last two points are gonna be awarded to whoever can get through the course without spinning out or straightening out in the least amount of tries.

(Jimmy)>> Pretty much whoever can learn the fastest.

(Jeremy)>> And this guy's going first. [ MUSIC ]

(Jimmy)>> I took off on my first run with just a basic idea of how to start a slide, and to no surprise I spun out. In my second attempt I felt a little more confident but I felt like I had to go a little bit faster to nail the slide, but it happened again, and again, and again, and again. I lost count at this point but I was set on getting one solid run before handing the reigns over to Jeremy. [ tires squealing ]

(Jeremy)>> After 31 failed attempts Jimmy's determination drove him to link this entire course together. Now I just hope I can do it in let's say under 40.

(Jimmy)>> With Jeremy behind the wheel I'd like to think he learned something from me but something tells me he's just an all-around good driver. [ tires squealing ]

(Jeremy)>> While our producer is tallying up the points Jimmy, how do you think you did?

(Jimmy)>> Pretty good I think. So 31 tries and two hours for me to complete the course, which I think is pretty good for someone who doesn't know how to drift, but in terms of how close I got to the clipping zones I have no idea.

(Jeremy)>> It's too hard to really tell the clipping zones when you're in the truck. The truck kinda does everything it wants to do on its own. We just don't have enough seat time to really make this work. Alright points are in. He's got her all tallied up. How many runs did I do it in? I did it in 12, and I got 2 points, and you did it in 31. Style points, well you got 1 point for style and there's just a big honking zero next to me. So I didn't even get any points but I agree with that cause you transitioned way better between all your clipping points, and then clipping zones I got a point and then you got 3 points, and that's obviously.

(Jimmy)>> No way!

(Jeremy)>> Well that's how close we got to the cones and stuff. You had a really smooth run. Oh my gosh, I lost again! How's that even possible!

(Jimmy)>> On the year I think that's 3 wins for me?

(Jeremy)>> Yeah and I got 3 points and you got 4 points, but I got 2 extra points cause my run was quicker.

(Jimmy)>> I think overall you're better at drifting than I am. You picked it up faster.

(Jeremy)>> Disappointing!

(Jimmy)>> Awesome! Check out more of our builds at Powernation TV dot com.
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