When I did the rebuild  of my 1987 Land Rover Defender 110, I did it through a shop that ran a special program where owners could rebuild/repower their Defenders under the tutelage of the shop owner. In fact, the build was so dependent on my labor that I, as the customer, had to sign a contract that I would complete my part of the bargain in a timely manner or else I would have to pay him his hourly rate to complete it for me.
It turned out to be an amazing experience. I stripped the truck down to a bare frame and built a brand-new rolling chassis  with new motor , transmission, transfer case, and suspension. I moved the old body over onto the new chassis, which gave it a sort of retro look with proper period-correct gear but the reliability of all-new parts. The shop owner was there to direct me what to start on next, to answer questions when I got stuck, and to help me lift the really heavy things, but for the most part, I wrenched alone.
Over eight weekends of work, I went from knowing how to do only the most basic of maintenance (oil changes, etc.) to being quite confident that I could do another project just like this entirely on my own. The cost was about the same as paying someone else to do the work but I can be confident that everything was done right--every bolt torqued correctly, every dirty thing cleaned, every broken thing replaced. I take my truck out to the desert for multi-week camping trips and the experience gave me much-needed confidence in my ability, my tools, and my gear.
I visited the Bowling Green, KY factory for a tour. It is one of the most interesting tours I've ever attended. Some other tidbits about the Engine Build. You get to build as much or as little as you want of the engine. They'll put a metal decal on the engine saying it was built by the owner with your name.
Also if you visit the factory make sure you visit the Corvette museum across the road. The most interesting thing about that museum is a good section of it was swallowed up by a sinkhole. Many corvettes were swallowed up. Most were restored but several were totaled to disrepair. You can see them on display and shed a tear. There is a good section of the museum dedicated to the sinkhole mishap.
Ironic that the DIY option is more expensive. I'm reminded of the British "kit car" scene, which started as a tax dodge for the Lotus 7: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lotus_Seven
"Under the Purchase Tax system of the time cars supplied as a kit (known as "completely knocked down" or CKD) did not attract the tax surcharge that would apply if sold in assembled form. Tax rules specified assembly instructions could not be included, but as the rules said nothing about the inclusion of disassembly instructions, they were included instead and all the enthusiast had to do was to follow them in reverse. However, once the UK joined the EEC on 1 January 1973, the VAT system was adopted instead so the tax advantage of the kit-built Lotus Seven came to an end."
The car is still sold as the Caterham 7, still available in kit form.
There's an interesting contrast between the (traditional) automotive and today's consumer electronics industries; ever since the early days of cars, manufacturers have tolerated and even encouraged the growth of a large aftermarket parts industry, to the point where you can build an entire "Chrysler", "Ford", or "GM" driveline from the engine to the wheels with entirely non-OEM parts. Of course, the manufacturers themselves will sell parts to anyone who wants to buy them.
Contrast this with companies like Apple and Tesla, who attempt to maintain tight control over their products and use legal action against those who want to "open them up".
(From what I've seen, European and Asian automotive companies are somewhat less open, but once again there is still a large aftermarket.)
speaking as a former drive train and engine mechanic for a luxury dealership, this is a bad idea at best. Granted, the LS series engine is just a simple pushrod iron behemoth, you're still asking for trouble.
My last place of employment wanted to do something similar, but it was shot down by the owners once they determined that practically every shop insurance provider flat-out said no. That $5000 fee is likely just for OSHA and your insurance company to look the other way in a state where regulations arent so stringent. All of us as vehicle techs also said no.
The average luxury customer isnt qualified to do much more than sit in the waiting room and watch an episode or two of Ricky Lake. Luxury customers betray an absolutely criminal lack of self control sometimes. Ive had customers wander back into the shop to stand over my shoulder demanding to know everything im doing and why. Ive had an old persian customer who demanded to drive his car home that day and wouldnt leave the shop until I completed the week long work. Ive also had wealthy couples leave their kids in the car. Another customer demanded I never drive the car or sit in it. Point being: anyone stupid enough to waste $5000 on the chance to work on an engine they couldnt possibly understand on their own, isnt going to be someone you want in a shop. Dynastic wealth leaves you with a Reaganomic level of competency.
The z06 is only an $84,000 car, but If i were the mechanic who had to deal with $5000 tourists chasing piston return springs across the shop floor and pulling main bearings out of their kids mouths, I'd do everything I could to find a new job.
It's pricey, but I love this. Now, if only someone would let me build a Merlin V12 :-)
Does it hurt resale value if an engine was “owner built”?
Here's something I'm seriously tempted to do this summer. There's an auto museum near Kalamazoo that offers a course on how to drive a Ford Model T. I have no problem driving a traditional stick shift, but the Model T has three levers on the floor and two on the steering wheel so it's a challenge!
Does anyone know why "hand-built" is a desirable quality for an engine? Several automakers advertise this for their top-of-the-line vehicles.
I know it makes for very good marketing, but is that it?
> Pay more to mess with the product you are buying and be able to brag about it at the pub!
Why not buy it used and fix it yourself? Cheaper, more fun, puts hair on your chest, gives you proper bragging rights, puts marketing departments in their place
I look forward to people doing this and putting the photos and (presumably) video online!
Factory five and superformance kits, i hear, are kind of a good experience to complete.
How about assembling a complete kit car, like K1 Attack?
Didn't they do this on Gas Monkey?