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iansane
iansane HalfDork
10/13/21 10:16 a.m.

That's encouraging!

V6Buicks
V6Buicks Reader
10/20/21 6:54 a.m.

The roller coaster ride continues!  Rewiring the Pro link worked for a while, but soon went back to my original problem.  Shaking the link makes the signal bounce.  angry  I don't know how to make the wiring any nicer than I've already done it, and I'm so angry about it that I'm choosing to ignore it for a while.

It did at least work long enough for me to attempt a retune.  I added up to 10% in some areas of the MAF table and the car still ran like garbage.  At this point, I needed to get all my friends of my case about the rockers.  It's the only thing that I changed and therefore a variable that needs to be reverted in some people's eyes.  I'll try almost anything at this point.  So long pretty rockers.  sad I'm still hoping to put them back when all this nonsense is figured out.

 

No change.  The car ran just as terrible with the old tune reloaded and the stock rockers reinstalled.  I then started grasping at straws.  I changed the ICM to a spare I had.  No change.  Then I remembered how much of a pain it was to install my crank sensor.  Let's check that.

Looks fine I guess.  The wiring is a little gross, but I'm not ready for that kind of surgery yet.

I kinda just cleaned things up a bit, got the sensor to install nicely, and put everything back together.

https://youtu.be/tVd-ALr7lPA

Well that's interesting!  I didn't really do anything, but I just about got my old car back!  After driving around a bunch, it was clear that I still had something going on.  It would start to break up under high loads, but I finally felt Camaro boost again for the first time in almost a year!  This was such a huge win even if the car wasn't necessarily good-to-go.  As much as I wanted to just enjoy my victory, I needed to harness my new found excitement and put it towards my new discoveries.

Obviously, something is still wrong with the crank/cam signal circuits.  I bought brand new ones from Napa just for insurance.  Installing the new stuff made the car run a lot worse.  It's not nearly as bad as it was before the initial "fix" but still pretty bad.  I guess it's time to bite the bullet.  I need to break out my meter, undo the OE wire harness tape, and figure out what's going on between the sensor and the PCM.  I have a feeling that "gross" harness I mentioned earlier is going to need a make over.  FUN

bonylad
bonylad HalfDork
10/20/21 9:26 a.m.

While I am no pro, I do know signal, power and ground wires - especially signal need to be soldered. Crimps and butt connectors can add resistance to a wire and throw signals out of whack. Here at the GM dealer I am the SM at, its a common thing. GM implicitly states to solder wires.  Im not sure but in the pic it looks like they are crimped?

V6Buicks
V6Buicks Reader
10/20/21 1:46 p.m.

In reply to bonylad :

Which picture are you talking about?  Soldering the Deutsch pins for the Pro link is probably a good idea. I have no idea what the deal is with that, but I'm pretty sure those are what's continually acting up.  As for the crank signal wires, that's factory.

The good news is that I just found out that that the crank, cam, and ICM harness are a single unit, and easily separable from the main harness.  It can also be bought brand new from Dorman.  Buying this is a no-brainer in my opinion.  All those connectors I mentioned look pretty trashed on my car, and repairing them is only a band aid.  Hopefully that shows up tomorrow and solves all my gremlins.

06HHR (Forum Supporter)
06HHR (Forum Supporter) Dork
10/20/21 4:02 p.m.

In reply to V6Buicks :

Make sure that harmonic balancer hasn't E36 M3 the bed, i had the rubber in one start to separate once and cause all sorts of issues, basically tore up the crank sensor on my old Bonneville SSEi on it's way out.    

A 401 CJ
A 401 CJ SuperDork
10/21/21 6:33 a.m.
V6Buicks said:

In reply to trumant :

Thanks.  This whole project kinda started out as a big "screw it" build.  I didn't want to build my Buick because it was too nice.  However, I was also tired of buying cheap cars to restore that turned out to be too far gone to make nice again.   Therefore, the whole point of this one was to not care too much anymore.  Yes, im dealing with the rust, but it's not going to pretty.  It's just going to work.  The way I see it is that this is the car I've always wanted to build, but not necessarily the car I've always wanted to have. lol  It's going to be fun.

The only problem with builds like that, is if all goes well, you find yourself caring again!

V6Buicks
V6Buicks Reader
10/21/21 6:50 a.m.

False alarm on the harness being removable.  That's a FWD thing only apparently.  I'm going to have to do the tedious job of hacking, soldering, and re-looming this thing.  I haven't yet decided how wide I want to open this can of worms though.  I might be able to pull this harness completely out, remove all the wires I don't need, and replace what's broken on the bench.  At that point, would it be worth continuing to use a stock PCM though?  That's just the abridged version too.  The "while I'm in there" list is quite long.  Ditch the fuel injector adapters and hard wire new connectors?  Relocate the ICM and coils to somewhere with cooler air flow?  Seamlessly install the WOT box?  Ugh.  Maybe I should buy an other entire harness, go through it, and make all the changes.  In the mean time, I'll just put new crank and cam pig tails on the original harness.

bonylad
bonylad HalfDork
10/21/21 2:21 p.m.

In reply to V6Buicks :

The picture with the floorboard and the screwdriver. Not sure what wires they are but to my eye it LOOKED like I saw butt connectors. If I am mistaken, my mistake lol. Ive have to be a soundboard for a shop foreman bitching about wire tension and connector tension and omg the soldering of wires!  

V6Buicks
V6Buicks Reader
10/22/21 7:13 a.m.

In reply to bonylad :

Ahhh I see what you're looking at now.  Those yellow spots are just shrink tube labels.  No butt connectors here!

I got to work inspecting the harness last night.  This is the power wire for both the cam and crank sensors.  It used to sit on the block and the split loom had long since cracked off.  This could be my culprit!

I clipped the cam and crank sensor connectors off pretty high and soldered new pig tails in their place.  It took two tries to get the loom cut and taped up in the right spots, but it fits better than the original.

Sadly, this did not fix the car.  I know I have to be on the right track though.  Every time I disturb these wires, the engine runs differently.  It's not the same poor running conditions each time.  The only thing I can think of trying now is shaking the ICM connector while the engine is running.  I would have to do this with a big chain of zip ties since I really can't get my hand back there when everything is installed.  That connector looks kinda rough too, but it will be a lot more involved to replace.  If that test ends up making the car flip out, I'm not going to be super excited about finding that problem.  The entire harness will have to come out and be exploded on the floor.

AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter)
AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
10/22/21 7:36 a.m.

Thumbs up for your tenacity. That was a great find on the chafed power wire. 

bonylad
bonylad HalfDork
10/26/21 8:53 a.m.

In reply to V6Buicks :

I see now! You know, if it comes to it, would it be so bad to just make your own harness? Long term here.  Are you familiar with Jafro?

He has an outstanding channel geared towards 4G63 content, and his swapped Hyundai. He had issues with the exisitng harness on his swapped car more or less the same way you are having them. He had enough and just redid the harness.  Fixed all his issues. Motivation? Your really only looking a an engine sub harness.........

V6Buicks
V6Buicks Reader
11/1/21 11:10 a.m.

Praise the lord.  I finally found the problem!

I was replacing the front crank shaft seal because it started puking oil during my last test drive.  When I was about to reinstall my balancer, I noticed something pretty un-good.

That would explain why it always felt so sloppy!  I don't have a picture of the balancer, but it's pretty obvious that I installed it wrong at some point and just smashed the crank key.  DOH!

Luckily I have a spare block from which I can rob stuff.  I think removing the old one is going to be a much bigger challenge though.

bonylad
bonylad HalfDork
11/1/21 11:39 a.m.

Awesome save!

garaithon
garaithon Reader
11/1/21 9:03 p.m.

I think I have about 20 of those keyways in a draw at work if for some reason you need another! Glad you found it! 

V6Buicks
V6Buicks Reader
11/2/21 8:49 a.m.

I'm trying to waste as little time as possible without rushing or making more mistakes.  My wedding is in 11 days, but winter is approaching too quickly!  I don't think I can let this car go an entire year without WOT, so I got my rear in gear.  By the way, the timing gear was a bit stuck.

That's supposed to be parallel with the crank.

New on top.  Old on bottom.  The air hammer did good work on removing the flattened piece.  I feel lucky that this is the only real damage.

The balancer got dinged up too, but it's still very much reusable.

New crank key installed with the same timing set.

This is already going much better than I anticipated.  I stopped here though.  On my way home, I'll be picking up new gaskets, more brake cleaner, coolant, and oil.  I don't even want to think about how much money this car has consumed in fluids only becasue of my mistakes.  Let's hope I can fire this thing up tonight!

V6Buicks
V6Buicks Reader
11/3/21 9:05 a.m.

I got the car back together and went for what I consider to be the first REAL drive with the TKX.  Part of me is incredibly excited because I kicked the 275s sideways around a few corners and paid no regard to third gear's well being.  The other part of me is bummed that I can't "just enjoy it" as I planned.

That smoke will be a relatively easy fix.  My oil feed fitting is leaking for some reason and doesn't want to stay tight.  I may need to switch to a flange style fitting instead of the NPT to AN adapter I'm using now.

While I'm able to drive the car around town and even give it some light beans without issue, it won't tolerate full throttle.  It still breaks up really bad at full boost and high rpm. sad One time it was even bad enough to back fire through the turbo and blow off my inlet tube.  I think it's time to start the diagnostic process all over again.  I have a fresh set of plugs I can throw in.  I might have to try a spare ICM swap and coils after that.  Fun times.  WHY WON'T YOU JUST WORK?!

bonylad
bonylad HalfDork
11/5/21 7:15 a.m.

Have you thought of getting another shell? Dont take this wrong, but that rust would keep me up at night. I already ditched a rare boysenberry purple probe gt with low miles due to rotted rockers.......years ago. Bit of a rust snob here, I admit. 

V6Buicks
V6Buicks Reader
11/5/21 8:22 a.m.

In reply to bonylad :

Nope.  I'm not a fan of rust either, but this is just my wannabe/cheap-thrills GN.  I have a real GN with low miles, nice original paint, and no rust.  However, I'm always scared of rock chips and heart-broken by every blemish.  It doesn't get out much.  The Camaro, on the other hand, is a cheap slut that fills the void.  I have scratched the hell out of it, splattered fiberglass resin on the paint, haphazardly repaired the floors and frame channels, purposely mangled stuff beyond repair, learned a ton, and felt no remorse for "ruining" a "cool" car.  I essentially made it just nice enough to enjoy while keeping it just crappy enough not to care.  Fun fact.  I actually hate Camaros, which kinda helps me not care less about the body.  I'd be too tempted to do a frame-off restoration in my original plan which was a G-body Regal swap.  Therefore, I think it's going to stay this way.  If it weren't for sentimental reasons, I would never have picked this car up, but I'm in too deep at this point.  I'm just wanting to go fast, beat it up, and put it away wet!

By the way, I changed plugs and opened the gap up.  This car runs flawlessly now!  Words cannot describe how excited I am to drive this thing hard again.  It's a total animal with the LS6 springs.  It's tempting to turn the boost up and put my high ratio rockers back on, but I really need to learn how to power shift better before I close up my room for driver error. haha

AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter)
AngryCorvair (Forum Supporter) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
11/5/21 12:22 p.m.

In reply to V6Buicks :

Outstanding!

obsolete
obsolete GRM+ Memberand Reader
11/5/21 1:07 p.m.

Awesome! Really glad to hear you finally got the bugs worked out. I'm curious about the plug change--which plug model and gap did you change from, and to?

autocomman
autocomman Reader
11/6/21 2:11 a.m.

Fun project. 3800 for the win. I'm putting an L67 in an MGB GT because I've always wanted to use the 3800 for something.  I have a build thread here for it.  Holy crap man I love to know how you got that crank pulley all the way on, geebus... Good find. The stock ECUs I know can be limiting as they don't have as much you can mess with as your standard 411 ECU used on an LS. Apparently that 411 can be set up for boost relatively easily. However the connector pinout is not the same, as I learned this when I had the vats turned off on my 3800 ECU. Even though the connectors look the same, they're clear and blue I think for the 3800. The 411 ECU they're red and blue. And they're pinned out quite differently at least as far as power and ground goes to the ECU. Shouldn't be much of an issue to repin but you would definitely have to do that if you swap out the ECU with the more programmable slash capable 411 version.

V6Buicks
V6Buicks Reader
11/8/21 12:09 p.m.
autocomman said:

Fun project. 3800 for the win. I'm putting an L67 in an MGB GT because I've always wanted to use the 3800 for something.  I have a build thread here for it.  Holy crap man I love to know how you got that crank pulley all the way on, geebus... Good find. The stock ECUs I know can be limiting as they don't have as much you can mess with as your standard 411 ECU used on an LS. Apparently that 411 can be set up for boost relatively easily. However the connector pinout is not the same, as I learned this when I had the vats turned off on my 3800 ECU. Even though the connectors look the same, they're clear and blue I think for the 3800. The 411 ECU they're red and blue. And they're pinned out quite differently at least as far as power and ground goes to the ECU. Shouldn't be much of an issue to repin but you would definitely have to do that if you swap out the ECU with the more programmable slash capable 411 version.

I've seen your build, and I'm LOVING IT!  Thanks for the compliments.  It's been a pain in my rear, but mostly due to self infliction. lol

Unfortunately, an 0411 cannot be used on a 3800 even with a repinned connector.  The there are no files that will work with the 18-3 crank signal or 3800 ICM. sad  It's a shame since the 0411 has high enough MAP resolution to run speed density plus flex fuel.  Supposedly, ZZP is working on a solution to work a flex sensor into the stock 3800 ECUs, but I won't be holding my breath.  As for MAFless fueling we're SOL.

The only swap I'm considering short term is the 7440.  It's not going to give me any extra capability, but its hardware is actually designed for supercharged cars.  My ECM is from NA cars only which is known for having an overly sensitive knock circuit.  I had to turn mine off becasue of this.  A 7440 will allow me to run knock sensors again.  If I have any more issues, it'll be Holley EFI time!

V6Buicks
V6Buicks Reader
11/8/21 12:15 p.m.
obsolete said:

Awesome! Really glad to hear you finally got the bugs worked out. I'm curious about the plug change--which plug model and gap did you change from, and to?

Thanks!  I'm pretty stoked too.  I still have some bugs to figure out, but they're at least easy ones for now.  I'm running NGK BR7EF gapped to .030".  That's still tighter than I need them to be at my current boost, but it's better than the .020" I was running before.  I was only running that tiny gap because that was what the tuner wanted me to do when the Autolite 104s were being turds.  I'm sure that if he knew I was going to run out of valve spring, he would have had me close them less.  I can probably get a warmer plug too, but I'd rather turn the wick up. cheeky

V6Buicks
V6Buicks Reader
11/8/21 1:04 p.m.

Don't get me wrong.  I love driving this car right now, and I don't plan to stop until the salt comes.  However, my to-do list is only going to keep growing.  Problem #1: The car's new nick name is Smokey.

This thing started smoking from the first turn of the key, and I can no longer chalk it up as residual oil burning.  It's embarrassing because it looks like I have a fire under the hood whenever I get to a stop light, and it's been like this since the day I installed the turbo!  The difference this time in particular is that I just got done resealing everything. sad  What gives?  The most difficult seal to change of course.

My turbo drain pipe is leaking too.  Hopefully I just need to crank it down a tad.  However, that rear main seal is a big bummer.  I've been checking the oil a lot and haven't seen any change on the dipstick.  I should be able to drive the car until winter.  It just stinks that I have to go back in there.  After reaching out to my homies on another forum, it appears that I installed my rear cover and seal all wrong.  There are special tools for aligning both of them, and the odds of getting it right without them are slim to none.  At least, I can redo this with some added confidence!  I have both tools coming in from Ebay. yes 

I also get to kill two birds with one stone because I'm guessing/hoping my release bearing is not adjusted properly.  There is an ugly growling noise when the clutch is engaged.  Let's hope that it's a simple adjustment and not my input shaft bearing being in a bind from poor bell alignment.

Because I found this to be unnecessary and another potential smoke show, I decided to remove the wrap on my down pipe.  The dark coloring was burning or washing off and looking bad anyway.  This time, I'm just spraying it with VHT and calling it a day.  I like it better already!

V6Buicks
V6Buicks Reader
11/9/21 7:52 a.m.

Now that I have a consistent clutch and a transmission that I don't need to baby, I can focus much harder on my driver mod.  I'm finally starting to understand the relationship between man and machine.  I can actually feel the poor adjustment of that TOB as it engages/disengages at the very top of the pedal throw.  The bottom half is dead space.  Luckily I haven't noticed any clutch slip yet, but I might have to refrain from WOT pulls until I fix that.  Then again, this engine already makes more torque than the clutch is rated to handle.  Replacing the clutch while I have it out this winter would be a smart choice anyway!

Sorry it's not an exciting update.  I just felt like some dialog needed to be added with pictures.  To make a long story short, this car is far from perfect.  As other's have mentioned, it's actually a huge rusty turd.  I'm loving it though.  I don't plan to stop playing in  my trash pile any time soon!

I think the car needs to go a little bit lower when I get a chance.  Maybe just an inch or so.  What do you think?

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