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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been working on an 87 T-Type that's been sitting for the last ~5 years or so. I've done the spring cleaning, cleaned the fuel tank and installed a Walbro 340 pump, installed an LT1 alternator, and most recently I swapped to the F-body radiator and changed the water pump. I finally got to take the car out and flog it a bit and I'm pretty un-impressed. I don't think the car is making any boost, I can foot brake the car and floor the gas and nothing happens. The engine just revs to a point, no turbo sound, no burnout, no nothing. I could sit like that all day if I chose. From a dead stop, if I mash the gas, it takes about 10 seconds to reach 25 MPH, still litle to no turbo noise.

Other than the mods I listed, the car is 100% stock.

Any thoughts on where I should be looking?
 

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Maybe the turbo is siezed up.
Take off the MAF pipe to turbo inlet unplug the MAf, start the car and see if the compressor side is turning.
 

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Any major pre turbo exhaust leaks? That will do it!
 

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I vote for wastegate actuator not working or hooked up right...Don't worry I took care of the locals 2 weeks ago when I was in town :yup:
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
87GTA-turbo said:
Maybe the turbo is siezed up.
Take off the MAF pipe to turbo inlet unplug the MAf, start the car and see if the compressor side is turning.
The turbo spins freely by hand, so that's not it.

Any major pre turbo exhaust leaks? That will do it!
None that I can hear, the car is quiet as a mouse. I'll check more carefully tomorrow though.

I vote for wastegate actuator not working or hooked up right...
That's what I was thinking. How do I diagnose it?

Don't worry I took care of the locals 2 weeks ago when I was in town
I'm not sure what you mean by this? I don't see how it relates at all to the problem I am having?
 

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neat said:
That's what I was thinking. How do I diagnose it?



I'm not sure what you mean by this? I don't see how it relates at all to the problem I am having?
Pump air into it and see if it leaks...

My mother-in-law lives in Fayetteville and was just there 2 weeks ago(that was the point), I lived there for 8 1/2 years.
 

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It should be much quicker than that with, or without a turbo.

Sounds like you have more to check than the turbo?

Tranny?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
The car drives fine other than at WOT. It shifts well, and all seems well with the transmission.

How would I diagnose something like that?
 

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A couple of things to check on the trans. TC lock/unlock, flaring, TC stall.
To check TC, cruise at 60mph, lightly press on the brake just enough to engage brake light. RPM's will go up about 300-600rpm's.
To check flaring on trans, unplug the 4 pin connection at the trans and go for a drive. Does it flare any on any of the up shifts??? No, trans should be good.
TC stall, Put car in drive, foot on brake and slowly press on the gas watching rpm. Car shouldn't hold more than 22-2400rpm's. if it's below that there could be a problem with the trans. :dunno:
 

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A couple of questions for you.
Do you have a aftermarket boost/vac gauge?
Do you have a aftermarket tack?
Do you have a scan tool?
 

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neat said:
The car drives fine other than at WOT. It shifts well, and all seems well with the transmission.

How would I diagnose something like that?
You said ten seconds to reach 25 mph> If that is true, then there is something else going on other than the turbo.

Have you removed the hose to the turbo inlet and reached in to see if the turbo spins easily?

Also, I would not be surprised to see some flaky injectors after sitting with old gas in it that long. Might put a couple of gallons of xylene in the tank and see if anything improves. Not really a cure for a proper cleaning, tho :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Ttype83 said:
A couple of questions for you.
Do you have a aftermarket boost/vac gauge?
No, the car is 100% stock.

Do you have a aftermarket tack?
The car has no factory tachometer, and the car is 100% stock, so I don't have an aftermarket one.

Do you have a scan tool?
I have WinALDL but I haven't gotten out to the car with it yet.

A couple of things to check on the trans. TC lock/unlock, flaring, TC stall.
To check TC, cruise at 60mph, lightly press on the brake just enough to engage brake light. RPM's will go up about 300-600rpm's.
Will do and report back. Without a tachometer, it might be tough to detect something like this.

To check flaring on trans, unplug the 4 pin connection at the trans and go for a drive. Does it flare any on any of the up shifts??? No, trans should be good.
Again, will check this out. Without a tachometer, it might be hard to notice something like this.

TC stall, Put car in drive, foot on brake and slowly press on the gas watching rpm. Car shouldn't hold more than 22-2400rpm's. if it's below that there could be a problem with the trans.
Again, no tachometer. I can foot brake the car, and floor the accelerator though. When I do it, nothing happens. The RPM's rise to a certain point, and then nothing. No burnout, and it won't over power the brakes.

You said ten seconds to reach 25 mph> If that is true, then there is something else going on other than the turbo.
Only at WOT. During sub 70% throttle the car runs pretty well. You could drive the car like this and not have a problem getting to speed in normal traffic. However, if you floor it from a stop, it just kinda drags along.

Have you removed the hose to the turbo inlet and reached in to see if the turbo spins easily?
Yes, the turbo spins freely by hand.

Also, I would not be surprised to see some flaky injectors after sitting with old gas in it that long. Might put a couple of gallons of xylene in the tank and see if anything improves. Not really a cure for a proper cleaning, tho
It has new gas in it now, I cleaned the tank before we fired it for the first time. If the injectors are bad/flaky, is there a way to diagnose them for sure?
 

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Sorry, I missed the spin part.

Only real way to check the injectors is to have them flowed.

Almost impossible to not have some boost if the hoses are tight.

Or, the car is not making enough exhaust flow to spool the turbo due to a bad exhaust leak...really bad...or an engine problem

I am sure you checked and the wastegate rod is attached to the wastegate arm.

Anyone else in your area to look at it? :)
 

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Steve Wood said:
I am sure you checked and the wastegate rod is attached to the wastegate arm.

Anyone else in your area to look at it? :)
First you need a boost/vac gauge...this is a must. I think your WINADL program will read rpm's.
There should be about 1/8" tension on the rod..that should be enough to give you 10-13psi boost. A very bad clogged cat and muffler can stop boost as well. Disconnect the down pipe and take it for a short drive..it'll be loud, but you'll hear the turbo. For the WOT runs I would think that is to rich and that's why it's a dog. I really think that it's the actuator..
There are a couple of guys close that maybe willing to bring their car over. I've got no plans on being there anytime soon.
 

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if it has a converter, could it have collapsed and plugged up while sitting...that will darn sure do the trick on it...Jim, you must have had a couple of spuds stuck in your exhaust in your youth... :D
 

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Steve Wood said:
..that will darn sure do the trick on it...Jim, you must have had a couple of spuds stuck in your exhaust in your youth... :D
No, but I may be guilty of sticking a couple of spuds in exhausts as a kid.. :dunno:
He definitely doesn't have boost, and it's goes pig rich over 3/4 throttle because the ecm is pumping in fuel for the turbo that's not spooling.
It's one of the 2 or both..
 

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you are right..plug that cat...if it has one...and it will go richer than a Rockefeller. :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
My vote is clogged cat. If it ever stops raining I'll run it open down pipe and see what happens.

Thanks guys, I'll report back with my findings!
 

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Actually you could just disconnect it from the elbow under the shield and power brake it in the driveway. That would not involve any cutting which is usually necessary on those old frozen downpipes. It'll be really loud; leave the hood up.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
My girl's Dad (the original owner of the car) apparently made one mod...

The cat was easily removed with 4 bolts and a U-bolt clamp. I replaced the cat with the straight pipe we found in the trunk (Go Dad!) and the boost is back!

Holy crap it's awesome! With some sticky tires, she's got a legitimate shot at my Corvette, providing I don't use the nitrous on my car. I can't wait to start tweaking on her Buick now.

First thing I need to do is get WinALDL working so I can monitor some stuff. After that, I'll use the Tuner Cat program that I've got for my Corvette to tweak the tune and see what happens.

Wish me luck!
 
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