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Thread: I'm a glutton for punishment

  1. #1
    So no more runnin'... Namrepus28's Avatar
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    I'm a glutton for punishment

    So I went and bought another 3800 Series II car.

    Apparently I don't get any wiser as I get older. Lol.

    This one's an L67. 2003 Pontiac Bonneville SSEi in Galaxy Silver Metallic. In surprisingly good shape with almost no rust at all. Downside is that it didn't come with any alloys and it's sporting a lovely coolant leak at the top of the engine.

    All I've done so far is replace a fog light, the air filter, the cabin air filter (which was flat out missing when I opened the compartment), and the gas cap. I also swapped on the winter wheels and tires since I live in a frigid arctic wasteland. It goes into the shop next week for the coolant leak diagnosis, investigation of the P0170 code (if I haven't managed to troubleshoot it by then) and a once over to make sure there aren't any other surprises lurking.

    So far I've really been enjoying it. The Supercharger really wakes up the 3800. Lol. Makes me wish Merlin had gotten around to selling the kits to convert our L36s.

    I'll post some pictures up as soon as I can.
    EDIT: Pictures added to post.
    IMG_20171112_133604.jpgIMG_20171112_133640.jpg
    "MORE BUTTONS!" Screamed the Pontiac Design Team...
    IMG_20171118_161304.jpg
    Light maintenance.
    IMG_20171126_103631.jpg
    Putting on the winter tires.
    IMG_20171126_112734.jpg
    Last edited by Namrepus28; 12-05-2017 at 09:46 AM. Reason: Added Photos
    -Derek- *Canada Forum Mod*
    1996 Camaro 3.8L A4
    2003 Bonneville SSEi A4
    Quote Originally Posted by RancidCamaro View Post
    "Cheat on her?! What do you think I am, some kind of an asshole?!"

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  3. #2
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    Congrats on the car, coming from the top could be a coolant elbow.
    1996 Camaro built engine, suspension GT35R turbo build.

  4. #3
    So no more runnin'... Namrepus28's Avatar
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    It wasn't, but they did end up being replaced anyway!

    I just got the car back last night. It runs great now.

    Turns out the IAC valve was throwing the code and needed to be replaced. Someone had messed with it, broken off a bolt and cracked it prior to my owning the car.

    The rest of the issues were solved by new transmission lines, valve cover gaskets, new coolant elbows, connectors, and new intake manifold and supercharger gaskets. It also got new o-rings on the injectors and a nice cleaning of the top end of the engine.

    So, I'm out some cash, but I have had my faith in this shop re-affirmed (2nd time going there) and know this is a great place for thorough, professional service.

    Looking forward to putting 94 Octane back into this beast as I had to put in 91 on my last trip.

    For the long term, I'm excited about adding some bolt on mods and seeing how the L67 responds.
    -Derek- *Canada Forum Mod*
    1996 Camaro 3.8L A4
    2003 Bonneville SSEi A4
    Quote Originally Posted by RancidCamaro View Post
    "Cheat on her?! What do you think I am, some kind of an asshole?!"

  5. #4
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    Good to hear, are you going with a smaller pulley, if so what size?
    1996 Camaro built engine, suspension GT35R turbo build.

  6. #5
    So no more runnin'... Namrepus28's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1996Camaro View Post
    Good to hear, are you going with a smaller pulley, if so what size?
    From what I've read, if you're dropping pulley sizes significantly, you must absolutely have supporting mods in place to compensate for the added heat generated by the supercharger and to make efficient power gains.

    If I go and spend the money on a modular pulley system and puller in the near future, I'd start with a 3.6 and eventually move down to a 3.4 as I install the supporting mods. I don't think I'd ever go lower than a 3.0.
    -Derek- *Canada Forum Mod*
    1996 Camaro 3.8L A4
    2003 Bonneville SSEi A4
    Quote Originally Posted by RancidCamaro View Post
    "Cheat on her?! What do you think I am, some kind of an asshole?!"

  7. #6
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    So you need headers, cai, and some colder plugs. What other mods?
    1996 Camaro built engine, suspension GT35R turbo build.

  8. #7
    So no more runnin'... Namrepus28's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1996Camaro View Post
    So you need headers, cai, and some colder plugs. What other mods?
    Well, it seems the Bonneville is a bit of a Unicorn when it comes to performance parts. Even a decent CAI is hard to find. Might end up going with a fender mounted cone CAI, but that wouldn't be until the summer at the earliest.

    I'd also install zzp coil packs and plug wires along with a throttle body spacer. Those plus the exhaust (and colder plugs when req.) a 180 degree Thermostat and a tune and I think I'd be good for running a 3.4 all day long.

    As tempted as I am to look at things like built heads, ported manifolds, a Gen V supercharger swap, etc, I think the costs would just end up spiraling out of control on a car that's supposed to be a nice DD.

    If I'm spending big bucks down the road, I'll probably sink the money into the Camaro instead.
    -Derek- *Canada Forum Mod*
    1996 Camaro 3.8L A4
    2003 Bonneville SSEi A4
    Quote Originally Posted by RancidCamaro View Post
    "Cheat on her?! What do you think I am, some kind of an asshole?!"

  9. #8
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    "I don't think I'd ever go lower than a 3.0"

    Yeah right!

  10. #9
    Contributing Sponsor LETZRIDE's Avatar
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    Nothing wrong with another 3.8! These things are stout...I've toyed around with scooping another myself I just don't have the room for it...

  11. #10
    So no more runnin'... Namrepus28's Avatar
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    It's been all I can do to keep up with the repairs on this car. Mods have been minimal, or in the case of the ZZP Coil Packs, unsuccessful.

    It's had 2 rebuilt transmissions since my last posting here. The 1st one did not hold up and, of course, was just outside of the warranty thanks to mileage. The current one I have more confidence in.

    I've done the brakes all around with new rotors and pads (fronts last summer, rears this summer) regular oil changes with Mobil 1 Synthetic, new fuel filter, air and cabin filters, ZZP Spark Plug Wires, plugs that are one heat range colder (Autolite 105s I think) which the engine seems to like. The lower degree thermostat option, boat roller mount, GXP strut tower brace, fuel pressure sensor, new OE spec Coil Packs, new ICM (can you tell I was hunting a misfire?), new window motors and regulators for a couple of the doors, and a few new interior parts.

    Pending repairs include Inner and Outer Tie Rod ends which I REALLY need to have the shop do soon. The shaking at speed is getting pretty bad. Also, installing a ZZP Power Log, new front swaybar end links, and getting the shop to install a new transmission pan gasket and rear trans mount.

    There's my 2019 update! Lol.
    -Derek- *Canada Forum Mod*
    1996 Camaro 3.8L A4
    2003 Bonneville SSEi A4
    Quote Originally Posted by RancidCamaro View Post
    "Cheat on her?! What do you think I am, some kind of an asshole?!"

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