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ebonyandivory
ebonyandivory SuperDork
11/21/14 5:14 a.m.

Do the later G-Body fwd cars have enough similarities to be considered "the same"?

It looks like there was a large scale consolidation on letter platforms around '97. And the engine of choice is the 3.8 rather than the other options during this run?

I'll say ît again, these build threads and interest in cars like these is why I love GRM so much!

AClockworkGarage
AClockworkGarage New Reader
11/21/14 5:41 a.m.
ebonyandivory wrote:
AClockworkGarage wrote: Since we are both H-body fans

Could you elaborate please? Serious question. What do you like about them? Generally or the higher-performance cars specifically? I need a decent daily driver with three kids and I cannot deny I've been secretly looking the these for years.

Basically: sleeper. They're bigger cars but they've got plenty of power stock. Easy to add power too. They're comfortable but they made them for so many years and in so many trim levels that a good junkyard scrounger can set it up any way they wanted. It's a gm so it'll run forever, and parts are cheap and plentiful. They're not desirable cars so they're inexpensive.

If you have any specific questions please feel free to ask. I am happy to be the H-body ambassador.

ebonyandivory
ebonyandivory SuperDork
11/21/14 6:14 a.m.

In reply to AClockworkGarage:

I'm hesitant to sidetrack this thread but if one were to buy the oldest model H (which were now G's?) that had three rear shoulder belts, is that maybe 2000-something, how would you cheaply (JY?) make it a faster/better car?

Am I correct about the designations H and G etc. becoming one platform?

(The one caveat is the three rear shoulder belts)

mndsm
mndsm MegaDork
11/21/14 7:07 a.m.
Kenny_McCormic wrote: In reply to mndsm: Yeah, unless I own it, then it kills the main bearings a week after I replace the lower intake gaskets and UIM. True story, only time in history an old GM oil pressure gauge was telling the truth.

I have hard time believing the gauge told the truth.....

81cpcamaro
81cpcamaro HalfDork
11/21/14 9:07 a.m.
ebonyandivory wrote: Do the later G-Body fwd cars have enough similarities to be considered "the same"? It looks like there was a large scale consolidation on letter platforms around '97. And the engine of choice is the 3.8 rather than the other options during this run? I'll say ît again, these build threads and interest in cars like these is why I love GRM so much!

It looks like 2000 was the first year the Bonneville was on the G-body platform, so not much help to the 99-earlier H-body models. Performance suspension parts for these models is almost non-existent. Some have adapted the W-body (Grand Prix) front suspension parts, which allows for better brakes and strut/spring choices. But the H- and W-body have different rear suspension so no interchanges there.

JohnRW1621
JohnRW1621 UltimaDork
11/21/14 12:57 p.m.

I loved the video of the racing LeSabre (not two words you typically see combined.) The LeSabre sure looked huge and looked to have little rear suspension but boy did that thing get around the track quickly.

I had a '97 LeSabre Limited and though I never thought of it as "racey" it was good at eating up highway miles.

I now sort of want to campaign a Park Avenue Ultra (with SC) or a Regal SC.

Rusted_Busted_Spit
Rusted_Busted_Spit UltraDork
11/21/14 1:11 p.m.

I have always like the Olds LSS. I had a 92 Bonnie SSE as a DD for a while, I liked it OK but I much preferred the subtle looks of the Olds.

rcutclif
rcutclif Reader
11/21/14 2:39 p.m.

doesn't that 3.8 make nearly 200 hp in NA form stock? My wife had an olds 88 with that motor and I always thought it was faster than it should have been. Better MPG too come to think of it.

AClockworkGarage
AClockworkGarage New Reader
11/21/14 3:12 p.m.
ebonyandivory wrote: In reply to AClockworkGarage: I'm hesitant to sidetrack this thread but if one were to buy the oldest model H (which were now G's?) that had three rear shoulder belts, is that maybe 2000-something, how would you cheaply (JY?) make it a faster/better car?

I don't know a ton about the bloated ones on account of I hate them... I'm a pre '99 guy myself. we just take the better series 3 engines and swap them into the older, lighter, better looking chassis.

This is a buddy of mine who races his bloataville everywhere he can. auto-x: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=byzHmCiIYMM&list=UUT8zj2_2Bi-ioxgy7s8H_XQ

and a road course: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KUKOf4YEUSs&index=19&list=UUT8zj2_2Bi-ioxgy7s8H_XQ

AClockworkGarage
AClockworkGarage New Reader
11/21/14 3:26 p.m.
rcutclif wrote: doesn't that 3.8 make nearly 200 hp in NA form stock?

Depends on the series. Series I makes 170hp/225tq then in '93 the bumped up compression by a half a point and added roller rockers. yet still 170/225 wink wink nudge nudge say no more.

Series II in N/A is 205hp/240tq, S/C: 240hp/280tq

The series III's numbers are similar but they've got forged rods and a stronger crank.

Kenny_McCormic
Kenny_McCormic PowerDork
11/22/14 12:17 a.m.
mndsm wrote:
Kenny_McCormic wrote: In reply to mndsm: Yeah, unless I own it, then it kills the main bearings a week after I replace the lower intake gaskets and UIM. True story, only time in history an old GM oil pressure gauge was telling the truth.

I have hard time believing the gauge told the truth.....

Swear on my balls, it had to be reading accurate, replaced the sender when I bought it to fix the gauge dance, then (initially) blamed it reading low on using a cheap sender.

It had been reading unnervingly low for a week, then I pulled off the highway to stretch and it was hard to start, then I pulled off again and it was rattling pretty good, glitter in the oil, master alarm buzzer going off, and not enough pressure to get the lifters pumped at idle bad. I limped it to the nearest parts store, threw two bottles of STP and a fresh filter at it, drove it home(would still rattle outside of 1000-3000 rpm), sold it for $850 for parts and the guy who bought it drove it 150 miles home, it seized when he shut it down on his driveway.

Unlike my prior "unkillable" engine death, a 5S-FE Camry that I maintained religiously and babied, yet spun a rod bearing hard enough to seize it (seems the ones I beat on AND maintain don't blow up), I wasn't even planning on being remotely gentle with this one, it was gonna be my DD/rallycross car.

mndsm
mndsm MegaDork
11/22/14 12:24 a.m.

I should really buy one.of these pigs and do just that. Couch mahal rallycross. Move the ebrake to where I can use it and do.work. I bet its hilariously fu n.

sethmeister4
sethmeister4 Dork
11/22/14 12:46 a.m.

My brother's first car was an '89 Bonneville SSE with the supercharger. It had every possible option except leather- 9 way power adjustable seats, an unbelievably fantastic stereo with subwoofer, and it just floated down the highway! Finally put a rod through the block when he ran it low on oil...I think it had about 230k on it. It was ugly, but it sure was nice to drive! I'll take a supercharged Regal please!

Kenny_McCormic
Kenny_McCormic PowerDork
11/22/14 1:09 a.m.

In reply to mndsm:

I will say the power delivery would probably do great on dirt, that thing just kinda walked up to 100mph in a completely linear manner, very smooth. Also sounded like nicolas cage vacuuming when you floored it and it kicked down to 1st or 2nd. I suspect it would have rotated OK just lifting/braking, but you could also just remove or jam open the ratchet and mod the pedal to be in a more comfy place, or fit it with a bigass Ford Aerostar floor lever.

mndsm
mndsm MegaDork
11/22/14 5:47 a.m.
Kenny_McCormic wrote: In reply to mndsm: I will say the power delivery would probably do great on dirt, that thing just kinda walked up to 100mph in a completely linear manner, very smooth. Also sounded like nicolas cage vacuuming when you floored it and it kicked down to 1st or 2nd. I suspect it would have rotated OK just lifting/braking, but you could also just remove or jam open the ratchet and mod the pedal to be in a more comfy place, or fit it with a bigass Ford Aerostar floor lever.

Skinnies and meats, but backward, grind off the ratchet and.build the mechanism I designed for.if I ever become a paraplegic and need to.drive a 6 speed with my hands. I kmow, I'm weird. But I thought about it one day,and for whatever reason decided I needed a plan. I'm sure its got some off.throttle or late vrske rotation in it just due to.size, but leslts face it. If I'm offroading a land barge, I'm going to be as sideways as possible.

AClockworkGarage
AClockworkGarage New Reader
11/22/14 7:24 a.m.

I like this place. You guys are all crazy...

Stealthtercel
Stealthtercel Dork
11/22/14 10:03 a.m.

^^^ What he said. (Both parts.) Also, I can't stop laughing at "...sounded like Nicholas Cage vacuuming when you floored it and it kicked down to 1st or 2nd."

G_Body_Man
G_Body_Man Reader
11/22/14 10:11 a.m.
Kenny_McCormic wrote: In reply to mndsm: sounded like nicolas cage vacuuming when you floored it and it kicked down to 1st or 2nd.

Pictured: His face when the roller brush kicks in.

Kenny_McCormic
Kenny_McCormic PowerDork
11/22/14 10:18 a.m.

I meant to put "g o d" but I have this handy Chrome extension that changes all instances of the word to "nicholas cage", makes the internet a much more entertaining place.

https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/nicolas-cage/fjgbnnhgejbfgfbofeohlffjlpceejlm/details

mndsm
mndsm MegaDork
11/22/14 10:49 a.m.
AClockworkGarage wrote: I like this place. You guys are all crazy...

Wander over to the skidpad thread. Aussie Steve is threatening to bring a bus.....

G_Body_Man
G_Body_Man Reader
11/22/14 10:56 a.m.

In reply to mndsm:

AClockworkGarage
AClockworkGarage New Reader
11/22/14 3:51 p.m.

o...k... this has taken a horrific turn. I guess I'd better start with the build then. It all started with my little internet shop (shameless link in the description) and the desire to build another fun track car. I've been with the H-body crowd for a long time so I knew I'd want a 3800 powered car. the technical knowledge I had about them was too great to walk away from. I'd settled on either a Fiero or a Buick Century wagon and the search began. I didn't want to put any of my "own" money into it only profits from the shop. that meant my budget was small. About $750 to start. I figured that would be enough to get me a roller.

Not really... I found a lot of worthless crap and a lot of overpriced crap. Aww... crap. Around this time my buddy was looking at a car one of his co-workers brought him. A $260K mile Bonneville with a bad motor. The price was too steep to repair it so the man gave it to us. After a few discussions it became my new project car. The ACG Racecar.

AClockworkGarage
AClockworkGarage New Reader
11/22/14 4:13 p.m.

The car being cheap left room in my budget to move forward. I hit every salvage yard in town looking for a series III motor. Most didn't have them, or had a series II and thought it was a series III. Others wanted way too much for them. I started hitting the smaller owner operated yards and hit paydirt. A 70K mile '05 Buick series III 3800 he only wanted around $250 for the motor. Plus a core.

I still had $500 left in the bucket for goodies... I turned to the club's classified pages and found a member who was swapping his old N/A motor for a blown one. $200 got me a Gently used 515 lift Comp Cam, LS1 valve springs and the matching intake manifold insert.

Factory springs on the right, LS1 on the left.

The factory insert is on the left, new insert is on the right.

AClockworkGarage
AClockworkGarage New Reader
11/22/14 4:27 p.m.

That'll get the air in, but what about the outgoing air? Back to the forums... in a gleeful act of profiting from the suffering of others I snatched a set of Speed-daddy small tube headers and a moroso spiralflow muffler from a member whose car was totaled before he could even install them. $250. not a bad deal at all...

That aughta do the trick. now I've got almost everything I need to put together a basic little performance motor... tired of typing so I'll leave you here for now.

G_Body_Man
G_Body_Man Reader
11/22/14 5:29 p.m.

Epic!

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