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3.8L turbo swap

Old 09-25-2012, 09:53 PM
  #151  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

I'm not really sure what the conversion is. Someone else here would prob know more than me on that stuff. I'm still learning how to tune, so I'm curious what it would be aswell.
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Old 09-25-2012, 10:33 PM
  #152  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

Originally Posted by neilb
I'm not really sure what the conversion is. Someone else here would prob know more than me on that stuff. I'm still learning how to tune, so I'm curious what it would be aswell...
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Old 09-26-2012, 09:26 AM
  #153  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

Originally Posted by 34blazer View Post
reason i ask is, a friend of mine out here has the ttype and just ran it at the track. he only uses a NBO2 and his voltage readings are in the mid .700's. hes running 12.2's with the TA-52 and turbo tweak chip. also 112 octane gas. thats way too lean, just wanted to see what other buick guys are reading with the NB so i can tell him what to shoot for.
The reason it is reading so low is that the NB O2 sensor is subject to the exhaust pressure prior to the turbo and higher exhaust temperatures. This dramatically changes the reading.

On the TB's/TTA's it is common to shoot for mid .700's with the NB in the stock location.

With a 3-wire NB a foot past the turbo it will read about .900 volts at 11.7:1 AFR.

RBob.
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Old 09-28-2012, 07:23 PM
  #154  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

Very interesting! Apparently My car is running way too rich. good to know. Guess I'll be checking out my TunerPro RT and making some adjustments to the TT chip. Thanks for the chart as well, going to save that for future reference.
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Old 09-28-2012, 08:36 PM
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

Originally Posted by neilb
Apparently My car is running way too rich...
Pull those heads off and open them suckers up, no need to pull fuel when its usable...
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Old 09-28-2012, 10:27 PM
  #156  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

Rather too rich then too lean to a certain point, when tuning a tuboed car with a narrowband.. IMO
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Old 09-28-2012, 11:54 PM
  #157  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

Originally Posted by Street Lethal View Post
Pull those heads off and open them suckers up, no need to pull fuel when its usable...
A set of TA performance or Champion performance heads are planned for the future, so I think I'll be leaving my heads alone for now.
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Old 09-29-2012, 09:29 AM
  #158  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

Originally Posted by neilb
A set of TA performance or Champion performance heads are planned for the future, so I think I'll be leaving my heads alone for now.
Meh, save your money Neil. This was after only two hours of porting (before and after)...

Edit: Don't wanna hijack your thread, Champions are a good choice...

Last edited by Street Lethal; 09-29-2012 at 11:09 AM.
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Old 09-29-2012, 01:18 PM
  #159  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

So I discovered today what kind of difference the octane rating of fuel really makes.

I accidentally filled my tank up with 91 instead of 94 that my chip is tuned for... , WOW, the car just fell on it's face! The timing got way retarded, and the engine just wasn't happy! So queston; should I drain my tank, or just run it through, but keep my foot out of it for this tank? I don't want to cause any damage, but the thought of draining that tank makes me cringe.

The worst part of it all was I had my coworker with me and was wanting to show him the car's power and now he thinks the car's a turd!
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Old 09-29-2012, 01:54 PM
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

Tune it for 91.
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Old 09-29-2012, 02:47 PM
  #161  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

x2 for the re-tune...

Maybe keep a 91 chip in the drawer of your toolbox and swap it back and forth...
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Old 10-01-2012, 07:53 PM
  #162  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

I would do a retune, except I'm not the one who tuned my chip. I'll have to order one from him, and that takes up to 3 weeks. I do have a second chip with a more mild tune on it, so it may work for the time being. We'll see.
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Old 11-11-2012, 01:28 PM
  #163  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

Well, I put the car away for the winter, and the work has begun!

The plans for the winter (time and money allowing) are to upgrade the transmission, reseal the oilpan gasket, paint and clean the engine bay, refinish the rally rims, hide the wiring harness and vacuum lines, and if finances allow, replace the cowl hood with a stock flat hood.

I have started the work by draining the coolant and disconecting the turbo piping and wiring harness. I ordered the trans shift kit from TCI as well as TCI's 2/4 Servo kit. I am in the process of researching a torque converter as well. I am buying a used 700r4 off a co worker's brother. It has only 90000km on it compared to the near 300000km on my current unit. I will freshen up the new one with the shift kit and servos, and re-install with the new torque converter. I will have a busy winter ahead of me, and i want to do it right this time.
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Old 11-11-2012, 04:50 PM
  #164  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

some pics so far.
Attached Thumbnails 3.8L turbo swap-dscf3803-2-.jpg   3.8L turbo swap-dscf3805-2-.jpg   3.8L turbo swap-dscf3804-2-.jpg  
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Old 11-12-2012, 03:15 PM
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

I am so jealous, words cannot describe it.

Keep up the good work, we are all pulling for it to come out well.
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Old 11-12-2012, 06:48 PM
  #166  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

I'll trade you my stock hood for the cowl ))
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Old 11-12-2012, 10:18 PM
  #167  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

Sorry the cowl hood just sold tonight! I found a stock steel flat hood locally for $100. Thought that was a pretty good price. Sold the cowl hood for $250.00.

I picked up the new trans tonight and started tearing into it a bit. I drained the fluid, removed the torque converter, and took off the pan. Managed to break off 3 of the pan bolts. Looks like I've got some drilling and tapping to do.

I was looking into various aluminum tranny pans, but found them to be far too expensive for what you get. Not to mention you can't even see them anyway.

I'll be picking up my new hood on Wed, and hopfully the trans parts are shipped quickly. I ordered them right from TCI, but havn't got any email confirming my order, so I'm a bit worried, but we will see.
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Old 11-14-2012, 09:27 PM
  #168  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

So I sold the cowl hood for $250, bought a flat hood for $100, and with what was left over plus some scrap metal money, I bought a new floor jack, jack stands, garage heater, and some wiring stuff. Plus the guy I bought the hood from GAVE me an almost complete set of gray interior planels! SCORE!!! plus, he's got a complete rear diff with 4.11 gears, and posi he's wanting to sell. He's going to email me once he's got a price figured out. AND (I know it just keeps getting better!) the guy who bought my cowl hood does custom body work on the side, and is willing to paint my car for less than half what the local autobody shop was going charge! Plus he's got a set of IROC gauges for sale too! Best car week ever!

I'll post some pics of all my new gear later
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Old 11-16-2012, 08:30 PM
  #169  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

Things are starting to get rolling here now. I got the new trans mounted onto my engine stand, and finished pulling the engine out. Later this weekend I'll pull out the old trans, and maybe pull a few more things from the engine bay. Still no word from TCI about my order, I emailed them the other day, If i still haven't heard from them I guess I'll be giving them a call.
Attached Thumbnails 3.8L turbo swap-dscf3815.jpg   3.8L turbo swap-dscf3816.jpg   3.8L turbo swap-dscf3817.jpg  

Last edited by neilb; 11-16-2012 at 08:46 PM.
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Old 11-16-2012, 08:32 PM
  #170  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

more
Attached Thumbnails 3.8L turbo swap-dscf3818.jpg   3.8L turbo swap-dscf3819.jpg   3.8L turbo swap-dscf3820.jpg  
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Old 11-16-2012, 08:33 PM
  #171  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

more again,
Attached Thumbnails 3.8L turbo swap-dscf3821.jpg   3.8L turbo swap-dscf3823.jpg  
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Old 11-18-2012, 05:04 PM
  #172  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

I scored that complete posi rear end tonight! it's a drum setup with an Auburn posi with 4.11 gears. I'm thinking that the 4.11's are too much for my car, so i may swap over ny current 3.42's to the new rear end. I'll be picking it up tomorrow night I hope.
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Old 11-19-2012, 08:27 PM
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

I picked up the new rear end tonight, and everything looks great! Someone took great care setting up the rear, even etching the ring gear with the back lash measurment! I'm thinking that I'll clean up the rear, paint it, new brake lines and wheel cylinders, and replace the axle seals. I may pick up one of those pod covers that brace the bearing caps as well, just for good measure.
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Old 12-05-2012, 09:18 PM
  #174  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

Small update,

I got my TCI shift kit and 2/4 servo installed, and am just buttoning up the trans now. I can tell you, shift kits are a PAIN to install, not to mention the instructions are a bit vague on some key points. Still researching torque converters. I also picked up some 6AN lines and fitting to run for the tranny cooler lines. My next task will be to finish cleaning up the wiring harness. I deleted all un-used connectors (A/C, EGR, Canister, etc), and will reroute some of the harness to run under the engine instead of across the driver's valve cover. Once the wiring is tucked away, I will clean and paint the engine bay. I originally planned to paint it Imperial Metallic Blue, but since it may be a while until the rest of the car gets painted, my colour choice may change. So i'm thinking I may paint the engine bay black so it would go wih any colour I choose.
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Old 12-08-2012, 08:26 PM
  #175  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

Another small update:

I finished up with the transmission tonight. Gave it and the pan a fresh coat of paint. Makes it look 1000's times better. I made up my new tranny lines, and painted the heads of the bell housing bolts.
Attached Thumbnails 3.8L turbo swap-dscf3824.jpg   3.8L turbo swap-dscf3827.jpg   3.8L turbo swap-dscf3830.jpg  
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Old 12-08-2012, 10:38 PM
  #176  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

Pic of my new Diff. I will be cleaning this up and painting it gloss black to match the tranny. I will replace the brakelines while the rear is out.
Attached Thumbnails 3.8L turbo swap-dscf3829.jpg  
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Old 12-08-2012, 11:50 PM
  #177  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

Sweet!!
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Old 12-09-2012, 12:05 PM
  #178  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

Thanks!
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Old 12-10-2012, 08:54 PM
  #179  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

I started cleaning the engine bay tonight. Found more rust under the grease than I expected. I'll start rust repair, and paint prep shortly. I'm borrowing a friend's MIG welder to fill some holes, repair the rust, and properlly notch the frame for more header clearance. I've stripped the bay down to where I feel is good enough. What's left there will be masked off.
Attached Thumbnails 3.8L turbo swap-dscf3834.jpg   3.8L turbo swap-dscf3836.jpg   3.8L turbo swap-dscf3835.jpg  

Last edited by neilb; 12-10-2012 at 09:10 PM.
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Old 12-11-2012, 06:01 AM
  #180  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

Looks good man. Real nice.
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Old 12-11-2012, 09:21 AM
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

be carefull with the trans on the engine stand, ive seen many bellhousings crack from that if the tailshaft end isnt suported
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Old 12-12-2012, 06:38 PM
  #182  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

Originally Posted by project89 View Post
be carefull with the trans on the engine stand, ive seen many bellhousings crack from that if the tailshaft end isnt suported
Oh really? Thanks for the tip. I'll get it down onto the floor then shortly. That works out better anyway, the engine stand the engine is on is really unstable.
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Old 12-16-2012, 09:12 PM
  #183  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

I got a bit deeper into the engine bay clean up today. I used a wire disc on my angle grider to grind off all the loose rust and paint. I started welding up some factory and nonfactory holes. There is one spot on the back lower part of the driver's inner fender that I'll have to weld in some new metal, but other than that everything cleaned up pretty well. I'm still debating on smoothing the strut tower caps, but I'm unsure if I really want to go that far into it. I'm looking for smooth and clean, but not sure if I want the full out custom look. We'll see what happens. You never know with me. I'll post some pics of my progress shortly.
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Old 12-16-2012, 09:31 PM
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

Looks good. Just fyi, I had to use "45 degree" AN fittings for my transmission cooler lines to fit inside the trans tunnel/floor.
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Old 12-16-2012, 10:35 PM
  #185  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

Originally Posted by Killert View Post
Looks good. Just fyi, I had to use "45 degree" AN fittings for my transmission cooler lines to fit inside the trans tunnel/floor.
I had wondered if there would be clearance issues. I still have to pick up the adaptors for the rad end of the lines, so I'll grab some 45* fittings then. Thanks!
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Old 12-24-2012, 09:46 PM
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

I have been working on my car when I have time (which seems to be not a whole lot). I ended up stripping a few more parts out of the engine bay, and have started to weld up unused holes and repairing some rust. Still unsure about smoothing the strut towers. Suggestions?

Anyway, Some pics of my progress, and pardon the lousy welding, I'm a bit out of practice.
Attached Thumbnails 3.8L turbo swap-dscf3838.jpg   3.8L turbo swap-dscf3839.jpg   3.8L turbo swap-dscf3840.jpg  
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Old 12-24-2012, 09:50 PM
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

Here's a shot of the largest rust hole I have to fix. I'm just waiting until after the Christmas holidays to go out and buy the metal I need to patch it. Also a shot of the frame notch needed for header clearance cleaned up a bit (needs more smoothing), and a shot of my borrowed welder. Welding with flux wire, working well so far!
Attached Thumbnails 3.8L turbo swap-dscf3841.jpg   3.8L turbo swap-dscf3842.jpg   3.8L turbo swap-dscf3844.jpg  
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Old 12-24-2012, 10:18 PM
  #188  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

Originally Posted by neilb View Post
Here's a shot of the largest rust hole I have to fix. I'm just waiting until after the Christmas holidays to go out and buy the metal I need to patch it. Also a shot of the frame notch needed for header clearance cleaned up a bit (needs more smoothing), and a shot of my borrowed welder. Welding with flux wire, working well so far!
if that machine can weld with gas do urself a favor and get a small bottole of gas and regular mig wire u will thank yourself for doing so in the long run
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Old 12-25-2012, 11:59 AM
  #189  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

I believe it can, but I don't have the hoses and regulator for it. The flux seems to be working well for me for what I'm doing, since all my welds will be ground down smooth anyway. When I bite the bullet and buy my own welder, it will be a 240volt with gas.

Merry Christmas and Season's Greetings!
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Old 12-26-2012, 06:12 AM
  #190  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

Merry Christmas to you too!

If the in wire flux works fine then use that. I used that stuff many times and else then the welds dont turn out as pretty, the welds do have good penitration when properly set up.

That lincon looks liket the one Ive used many times though. Im 99.9% sure you can just add the gas whenever you want though on that model. But like I said its not a must.
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Old 12-26-2012, 06:30 AM
  #191  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

flux is fine, battleship were flux welded, the flux was just on the outisde of the wire [arc], not the inside, no different.

plus gas only works with no wind in a nice sealed up shop, great for a pro with a dedcitated welding area, not great for a DIY around the house guy. plus I hate welding smoke, always got a fan going that would blow away my shield gas.
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Old 12-26-2012, 08:10 AM
  #192  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

Originally Posted by Gumby View Post
flux is fine, battleship were flux welded, the flux was just on the outisde of the wire [arc], not the inside, no different.

plus gas only works with no wind in a nice sealed up shop, great for a pro with a dedcitated welding area, not great for a DIY around the house guy. plus I hate welding smoke, always got a fan going that would blow away my shield gas.
i never had a problem mig welding outside on windy days , i cant stand flux core wire the welds arent clean , and it has a ton more spatter

now tig welding out in the open in the wind is a different story
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Old 12-26-2012, 09:07 AM
  #193  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

I've never had any experience using gas outdoors. Most of my welding has been done at work. I can see how wind would/could mess with the gas. The Flux does make a messier weld, and if I were leaving the welds visible then gas would be a must. But like I said, in this case all my welds are getting ground down, so the splatter doesn't matter.

So far, my only problem with the welding has been burning through the sheet metal. I have the amperage and the wire speed turned down as low as I can, and I'm doing short spot welds letting the metal cool in between. It still seems to burn through. Is the frame (unibody) really made out of such thin metal? No wonder these cars flex som much.

I have plans (while I have a welder handy) to make my own wonder bar and a strut tower brace.
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Old 12-26-2012, 10:38 AM
  #194  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

what size wire?
if find it easier to burn threw thin sheet metal with flux versus mig , with flux sometimes turing up the wire speed a lil or using a slightly thicker wire will help
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Old 12-26-2012, 01:21 PM
  #195  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

stick and move, ive welded paper thin rusted gas tanks before, it can be an art with any type of welding getting a hole to close up, use to leak test TC and had to tig weld any leaks shut, often had to chase it round and round till the edge was firm before ya could weld the center hole well.

I use .35 flux wire

Last edited by Gumby; 12-26-2012 at 03:11 PM.
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Old 12-30-2012, 04:03 PM
  #196  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

Hope everyone had a good Christmas/holidays!,

I managed to get a bunch done today on the car. I went and picked up some metal and made up my own wonder bar. Very easy to make, and it only cost me $18.00 in materials. I'll post some pics later. I also patched the hole on the driver's inner fender, and got the first coat of body filler on the areas I welded. Everything is coming along nicely.

While I had the carpet pulled back patching the inner fender, I found that the floor pans are getting pretty rusty too. Must be from water leaking through the the innerfender/firewall hole. Another thing to repair.

I'm hoping that I can get a coat of primer on it in the next couple of weeks.
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Old 01-02-2013, 09:04 PM
  #197  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

Here's some progress pics, plus a shot of my homebuilt wonderbar. I made that in about an hour for less than $20.00. I will probably smooth the welds out some (messy flux wire) and paint gloss black. I patched the hole in the driver's inner fender by welding from the patch inside the wheel well. I tacked the patch also in the engine bay and ground the welds flat. A coat of body filler to smooth it all out.
Attached Thumbnails 3.8L turbo swap-dscf3850.jpg   3.8L turbo swap-dscf3851.jpg   3.8L turbo swap-dscf3853.jpg  
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Old 01-02-2013, 09:10 PM
  #198  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

more

Pardon the runs in the rubberized undercoating, apparently it doesn't spray well when the garage is below freezing!

I haven't had a chance to get out to the garage and sand the first coat of body filler. I hope to get that done this week. I'll be getting ready to shoot some primer shortly. What type of primer would be best? I have a HVLP gun and other equipment (strainers etc). When it comes to the paint, I would prefer a single stage paint.
Attached Thumbnails 3.8L turbo swap-dscf3852.jpg   3.8L turbo swap-dscf3854.jpg  

Last edited by neilb; 01-02-2013 at 09:20 PM.
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Old 01-02-2013, 09:11 PM
  #199  
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Re: 3.8L turbo swap

nice job, i suggest u reinforce the wonderbar from the bar to the back of the moounting bracket , its hard to see the whole thing but it looks like it may just flex at the ends of the brackets u have now
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Old 01-03-2013, 07:27 PM
  #200  
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Join Date: Oct 2005
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Transmission: 700 R4, 700 R4
Axle/Gears: 3.42:1, 3.08:1
Re: 3.8L turbo swap

That's not a bad idea. I was wondering if the bar would be stiff enough. I may pull it back off and figure something out.

On another note, during a few minutes of slow time at work, I found 3 lengths (approx 9' long each) of 1 3/4", 0.120" wall tubing tucked into a back corner... I'm thinking subframe connectors! I think that those would be the perfect size and all I would need is some 1/8"? thick steel plate. I figure I might as well take full advantage of having a welder at home.
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