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Thread: 3.8L Series II w/ SC swap?

  1. #31
    Member Since
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    Well Hello

    @circmand - I see you're from Greenville, MS? I'm from MS - my wife's from Greenville but it's been over 20 years ago. Got married there @ 1st Baptist. Is the drag strip still open? I got stopped by the cops drag racing a buddy's '84 Mustang GT against another buddy's brand new '86 GT while a guy that just bought a GN off the showroom floor paced us ('cause it was no contest that it was faster!) at 3:00 AM on Hwy 82 coming into town back in the day when we were young and stupid! We stop at Doe's Eat Place whenever we're back now days and don't mind spending the money![/QUOTE]

    Just moved to G-Ville back in May. This place is dead. I haven't been to Doe's due to the previously mentioned $$$$. No on the drag strip I get frustrated driving around here due to people driving in both lanes 10-15 under the speed limit.
    "Take it up with my butt, cuz he's the only one that gives a crap"

    Carter Pewterschmidt

  2. #32
    Member Since
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    1999, Blue (Astral)5 spd VX #1396 ; '01 Proton 0753
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    This guy put one in an Amigo ten years ago:
    http://www.4x4wire.com/forums/showfl...0&fpart=1&vc=1
    There's no 'I' in denial.

  3. #33
    Member Since
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    Dans Amigo was quite a project. He no longer has it. Pretty much destroyed it in a wheeling trip....lots of damage and I think he parted it out instead of fixing. One thing broke and took out a lot of other stuff when it did.
    Billy Oliver
    15xIronman
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  4. #34
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    Actually, you left out #1 problem with LS4, it lacks provisions for starter mounting. Your other concerns are rather trivial, comparing to everything else that has to be done during a motor swap.

    I have seen them as low as $500-$700. This one was 2 miles from my home:

    http://pages.ebay.com/link/?nav=item...d=181595245407

    I am not sure if stock 3800 offers enough performance increase to warrant to be considered for a swap. You should be able to add force induction to 3.5 with similar results.
    96 Eclipse Spyder GSX (already turbo, AWD swap)
    93 Eagle Summit AWD (4G63 turbo swaps)

  5. #35
    Thanks for the link to Dan's Amigo. Does he post on this forum or only on 4x4wire?

    How do people handle the starter mounting on the LS4? I suppose having a longer engine and having to weld up custom exhaust headers could be trivial.

    My interest in the 3800s is to find the absolute cheapest and easiest swap to get a reliable Trooper/VX that's comparable or better on power and easy and cheap to maintain. I agree that a stock L36/L67 isn't a great power increase but that's not my main goal. I'm thinking of the best/cheapest alternative for saving the Troopers/VXs getting scrapped due to the 3.5 oiling issue. Forced induction on the 3.5 doesn't solve that! Near stock power would help the 4L30e too, and it seems like overhauling the trans during the engine swap and replacing the solenoids and doing some minor updates/upgrades to the 4L30e might make it reliable enough.

    Since the Trooper/VX came with a V6, it just seems easier to drop another V6 in there but I must admit I haven't looked closely at how much room there is in front for a V8 - maybe there's so much room it's a non-issue, but I just figure an engine of similar dimensions as the 3.5L has got to be easier.

    I'm not keen on the LS4 because (aside from the starter issue) I just personally don't know it well enough to know how to integrate it's control system into the Isuzu. Yeah, I know we can use aftermarket ECMs like Megasquirts but that just adds cost as one can just about always get the entire 3800 wiring harness and PCM thrown in for free. And since the Isuzu and L36/L67 both used the same GMPX style/series PCM with the same connectors (just change the colored plastic header to the right color ones) one could potentially re-pin and integrate the Isuzu and L36/L67 harnesses together and just about make that 3800 swap look factory.

    Maybe I'm being naive since I haven't had the opportunity to attempt this swap yet, but I'm hoping the oil pan fits and F body exhaust manifolds bolt in perfectly, so the only custom thing to fabricate would be motor mounts and a U turn on the intake to turn it away from the firewall. Yeah, I know Holdens have a U turn (I was actually there when the guys initially mocked it up) but it turns the wrong way for us since their cars are RHD. I think our steering shaft would be in the way.

    Anyway, I'm thinking the 3800 would be perfect for a really cheap swap that wouldn't cost much more than the cost of the engine + F body headers & related exhaust work + motor mounts + induction U turn mods + throttle cable mods + fuel line mods + misc wiring mods. That would be about as simple as any swap could be.

  6. #36
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    Unfortunately Dan is pretty much MIA on the Isuzu boards. When he did post it was on the 4x4 wire.

  7. #37
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    LSx is THE most popular engine to swap into anything. Originally this was done because of its performance and relatively low price, now, however this engine has unbelievable amont of aftermarket to support engine swaps! That, alone, makes it a great engine to swap in!

    As for starter, I saw two options we discussed them in LS4 threat:

    http://vehicross.info/forums/showthread.php?t=24246

  8. #38
    Member Since
    Apr 2015
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    1999, White, Ironman
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    I know this is a bit of an older thread, but if anyone need any info on the 3800-II that's actually an engine I'm very familiar with. I had a 2001 v6 firebird for years and was very active in the v6 community. It is imo one of the most reliable engines ever made. It is also a much better option than a series 1 these days. I can help dig up info on sourcing the Holden supercharger if anyone gets that far. Just know you need L67 heads for that as the injector bosses are in the head on the supercharged engines and in the intake manifold on the NA L36.

  9. #39
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    I'll cut against the grain and say that a DOHC 6g74 swap from a Montero would actually be an awesome idea--especially when you can bolt up all the stock twin-turbo bits from a GTO. You'd probably have to use the Mitsu trans if you mounted it transverse, but an adapter might be able to make the stock trans work long-ways. Don't listen to the armchair pundits. the 6G7x is a great engine.

  10. #40
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    I think my engine seized up on me last night (lack of oil, even though I just put in a couple quarts a couple weeks ago) It's in the shop now so it's not for sure yet. Anyway, need to start thinking about either a swap or selling the rig. Is the 3800 a good option? Would it be much more $$$ to do the LS4?

    Mine is supercharged right now so losing that would suck, but at this point this vx has been nothing but a money pit (granted, my fault for wanting mods ) so I am not sure what to do.

  11. #41
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    Ive always wanted to see the swap done on the VX. Thought about doing it myself but i didnt want to be the first to try!

  12. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by swanny View Post
    Mine is supercharged right now so losing that would suck, but at this point this vx has been nothing but a money pit (granted, my fault for wanting mods ) so I am not sure what to do.
    I think you should try the swap! And sell me your supercharger

  13. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by swanny View Post
    I think my engine seized up on me last night (lack of oil, even though I just put in a couple quarts a couple weeks ago) It's in the shop now so it's not for sure yet. Anyway, need to start thinking about either a swap or selling the rig. Is the 3800 a good option? Would it be much more $$$ to do the LS4?

    Mine is supercharged right now so losing that would suck, but at this point this vx has been nothing but a money pit (granted, my fault for wanting mods ) so I am not sure what to do.
    Well, consider the age of this thread and still nothing concrete

    If I was in your position, I would get another stock engine (with lower mileage) and put it in. I often see Troopers with blown trannies for as little as $600. Buy one of those, keep the engine (and perhaps a few other parts, like: TOD and rear end), trash the rest. You might even be able to get $100-$200 for scrap metal.

  14. #44
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    Has anyone considered the cost of a swap and all the time a headache involved, vs. building an improved 3.5? Wouldn't getting a re-man engine that already has the piston issues fixed and then its a direct bolt in swap be easier, cheaper and more reliable in the end?

    I'm not against engine swaps, but I am a fan of the stock 3.5 and keeping the TOD seems to be a major concern for most people. I barely use TOD and leave my front hubs unlocked most of the time, so loosing it isn't much of a concern for me.

    Also, on the whole Northstar V8 route. I would never want one of those piles in my engine bay. I've never seen one that doesn't leak and they are a nightmare to work on. The 3.8 V6's aren't bad, but I know they have plenty of their own problems with intake leaks and carbon build up.

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