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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
After about 5 weekends of tinkering and head scratching It's finally awakend from a reported 20 year slumber. If it wasn't for the search feature here I am sure it would have taken longer.

So, an old guy in my local car club has had this 1985 GN pearched on top of a lift in his shop for the better part of 20 years. He says it lived outside fro a few years after a theft recovery and about 12 or so years ago it was put inside. Damage from the theft consisted of a removed ECM, a few pieces of interior trim and cut wires from the window switches. I don't know why but it was pushed back due to other projects over the years. A few weeks ago I suggested we get it running again. It has been a learning experience that's for sure. My friend was convinced that the chip in the replacement ECM was junk so he bought a Hypertech chip, and that's where we started...along with a new battery.

Day one, chip swap. No Start! Okay what's going on here? Checked fuel pressure...Zip. NOTHING!. Check fuses and fuel level. Fuses were all good, but apparently the fuel was never drained prior to storage. We dropped the tank and found an old Walbro 255, but it was bad. So, another went on order, and we drained the tank and cleaned out the fuel lines. When the new pump arrived it was promptly installed with a new fuel filter. Still no start. While waiting on parts I decided to check out the vacuum line plumbing. Most of the lines were dry rotted and many plumbed wrong. Also in the system was a dead end style manual boost valve. With the help of the FSM and a screen shot of the core support diagram I put it back to stock with new silicone lines. Also in that waiting period we shot for 12 volts at the fuel pump commector by the tank. It wasn't getting power at all. I also found an old Clifford alarm installed, and I thought that may be bad causing issues, so I removed all of that, still no start. At that point I signed up here to use the search, as I am sure I am not the 1st person to run into this. So, with newly gained knowledge I jumpered out the Fuel Pump Relay plug forcing 12 Volts to the pump. YES! Fuel pressure! Pulled the jumper wires out and put a new relay in...Umm, ummm why isn't the pump running again?!?!? Back to search, and found out about the Oil Pressure safety feature. cranked it over with the fuel pump connector disconnected for about a minute. Shot for 12 volts while cranking and it suddenly appeared. So connected it back up, and it didn't take that long for it to build pressure and fire up :headbang:

After letting it idle for a while we put a fuel pressure guage on it and it was a chopy 35-40psi. I don't think it's factory, but someone put an adjustable fuel pressure regulator in it. I turned it up to 45psi, and with a blip of the throttle with the vacum line connected it ramps up to 50. I figured with the chip in that would be a good place to start. So now that it will turn over and idle we turned attention to standard tune up stuff. The boring stuff, Oil, Trans fluid and filter, etc...

After dropping the transmission pan I found a 1/4" diameter by about 2" long light weight spring sitting in there. Where does this thing go?!?!?! After a careful look it belongs on the "T" shaped pin for the TV linkage. The "T" was just floating in the pivot bracket. So that went back together with no issues. New oil and filter, fresh trans fluid and filter, turned the key over, and now it can move under it's own power. A quick re-arange of a few other cars in the shop, and it drove off its 12 year pearch, but not into the light of day just yet. I have to solder in the new window and lock switches. After that the owner is planning on recovering the seats with reproduction GN covers, and replacing the faded velour on the door panels. O and a good wash, and full detail is on the list.

I don't know what is long term plans for it are, but it felt great getting it running again even with the troubles we ran into. :headbang:
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Here are a couple questions for now. I am sure as we start driving this thing more will come up.

Should this car have fender badges? If so where to get them?

Transmission cooler line routing. The lines are (were) resting on the exhause by the starter. I now have about 1/2 to 3/4" clearance, which I am sure is not enough. I plan on wrapping the exhaust, should I find something to wrap the lines with too. How close are these lines normally in there. The exhaust is also not stock.

The owner says the turbo isn't stock as well. It is a Garrett and has M10 on it, if that helps. If this turbo is not stock would that cause a re-rout of the down tube, causing the transmission line clearance issue?

Thanks
 

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Here are a couple questions for now. I am sure as we start driving this thing more will come up.

Should this car have fender badges? If so where to get them?

Transmission cooler line routing. The lines are (were) resting on the exhause by the starter. I now have about 1/2 to 3/4" clearance, which I am sure is not enough. I plan on wrapping the exhaust, should I find something to wrap the lines with too. How close are these lines normally in there. The exhaust is also not stock.

The owner says the turbo isn't stock as well. It is a Garrett and has M10 on it, if that helps. If this turbo is not stock would that cause a re-rout of the down tube, causing the transmission line clearance issue?

Thanks
Great story, love a re-birth!! post a pic?
As far as the fender badges, yes they did come on the car. I found them on E-bay. I attached a link:

84 85 86 87 Buick Regal GRAND NATIONAL EMBLEM NEW GM! | eBay

I can't remember how far my tranny lines are from the exhaust but, the further away they are mounted from the exhaust the better. It wouldn't hurt to wrap the lines, if you got the time and it gives you piece of mind, why not, I would, a 1/2 inch does sound close. Good luck on the project!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Took it for it's first road test. It didn't drive/run under load as good as I thought it would though. I don't have any ideas what is going on with it though. It was stumbling pretty bad at what I am guessing is about 25-3000 rpm. Once it past through that it smoothed out. This started getting better though as another friend that was helping on the car drove it. Still it doesn't feel all that powerful. Also the brakes need to be rebuilt, and all fluid flushed.

Still it is out of the shop fully! It did make it's first actual drive in at least 12, but more than likely 20 years! :headbang:
 

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Took it for it's first road test. It didn't drive/run under load as good as I thought it would though. I don't have any ideas what is going on with it though. It was stumbling pretty bad at what I am guessing is about 25-3000 rpm. Once it past through that it smoothed out. This started getting better though as another friend that was helping on the car drove it. Still it doesn't feel all that powerful. Also the brakes need to be rebuilt, and all fluid flushed.

Still it is out of the shop fully! It did make it's first actual drive in at least 12, but more than likely 20 years! :headbang:
Good to hear that the car is driving, sounds like you have a couple of bugs to work out but, like you said it's driving after 20 years. The 84 and 85 GNs were always slower and not really in the same league as a 86 and 87 but, still a nice classic car for cruising. enjoy!
 
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