Part II No turning back..
In Jan '09 after prepping everything I could think of, I decided to pull the trigger and start the actual swap. It took approx 7 weeks to complete, chipping away at it whenever I could.
Original, but good running 3.0l. Instead of selling the 3.0l, I bought a 89 Xtra cab 4x4 with a blown engine. I installed the good 3.0l in the 89 and then used it as a driver while my swap was in progress. After the swap was complete I sold the 89 and the profit pretty much paid for 50% of the swap cost.
There is much confusion over what style oil sump you should use for this swap. I know I spent hours looking at threads and pictures trying to figure out which was best. My engine has a rear sump (SC400), the other available in NA is the front sump (LS400)
The opinion in OZ/NZ seems to be that the front sump is the only way to go. The goal of course is to get the engine as low as possible. With a front sump the steering relay rod is the limiting factor.
With the rear sump the IFS differential is the limit. In stock form a 4-5" body lift would be needed (not reasonable)
This why everyone likes the front sump, it will fit with a 3" BL.
If you have a rear sump you have 3 choices:
a) 4" bracket lift, 1UZFE should fit with no Body Lift
b) Major oil pan/sump fabrication
c) Lower the IFS diff 2" using a new crossmember/diff drop. Only a 2" body lift is needed now.
I choose option c). Mainly because a) I couldn't locate a reasonable priced front sump set up b) I wanted the BL to be as small as possible c) I really dislike bracket lifts and would never use one.
So I made up this crossmember, it lowers the diff 2". With some solid 2" spacers on the rear mounts and some clearancing on the flanges everything fits nicely.
So far its worked great. The only downside is a 1.5" loss in ground clearance, but hasn't been an issue yet. We'll see if how I feel after a summer of wheel'n.
Test fit, seems to be ok! Transmission was moved back 2.5" to gain clearance for a cooling fan.
Engine mounts made up. The engine and frame mount points almost line up perfect, so mounts were easy to fab. I reused the original 3.0l rubber mounts.
The transmission mount needed a 2" spacer and offset 2.5" ( sorry, no pic)
Engine is now installed!