Cars for Tim

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Cars for Tim

Post by pvtnum11 on Thu Apr 08, 2010 10:10 pm

Hey Tim,

Found an ad for a 1990 MK III Supra on craigslist. 2,800. Turbo, automatic trans. Aftermarket metal head gasket installed, and the ad mentions that the engine has been 'freshened up', whatever that means. Full rebuild? Top-end rebuild? Can of 6-Cylinder Engine Restore poured into the crankcase??? At least the head has come off once. Might be worth looking at - the MKIV's I've seen are really REALLY pricey, like, twenty grand plus, and no clue what sort of aftermarket mods are on them that you'll have to figure out. This has the 7M-GTE engine, looks like, not the weaksauce N/A 2JZ that the MK IV N/A models got.

Link: http://honolulu.craigslist.org/oah/cto/1674209304.html The pics are crummy lo-res ones not worth the space here.

2800 for a car that runs, and you can dump the extra cash into doing an engine swap later on. Plus, automatics and turbochargers do get along just fine - easier to drive, and brake boosting an automatic turborcharged car is a heck of a lot easier than trying to do so with a manual - you get to have the enigne operating against a load (the torque convertor) so it's actually making boost. Let off the brakes (or trans lock, tee hee) and bam, you're airborne.

They had a few Toyota Cressida's on there, too. They mostly came with the older M-series of inline six clinder engines, as well. Until 1993, the 7M-GTE was Toyota's top engine, until the 2JZ-GTE was introduced.

Just think, you could have one of these, if you fixed it up and painted it:

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Re: Cars for Tim

Post by pvtnum11 on Thu Apr 08, 2010 10:26 pm

http://www.7mpower.com/7m_buildup.shtml

Basic MK III build information, seems like. Site seems to have been orphaned since 2005, no updates.

Not sure how vast the aftermarket or spare parts sources are, but seems like a good deal over the more costly MKIV models.

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Re: Cars for Tim

Post by Ambush on Fri Apr 09, 2010 8:44 am

Man that thang is sweet. Dude I could totally afford that. I will have to decline, though. Joseph needs a car and he may not need THAT, but dude that's such a good deal for a car you can over 200k miles on. I mean seriously.

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Re: Cars for Tim

Post by Ambush on Fri Apr 09, 2010 8:46 am

Ambush wrote:Man that thang is sweet. Dude I could totally afford that. I will have to decline, though. Joseph needs a car and he may not need THAT, but dude that's such a good deal for a car you can over 200k miles on. I mean seriously.

Dang it I thought the pic was the car. Serves me right. I should read everything next time. Sorry man lol.

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Re: Cars for Tim

Post by pvtnum11 on Fri Apr 09, 2010 9:49 pm

Wait, what? You thought the pic was THE car in the ad?

BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!

If only. I'd consider trading my TTA for that.

Craigslist has fresh ads and offers going up all the time.

If you're looking for Joeseph, and all he needs is reliable transportation, there's plenty of that, too, all manner of makes, models, and even some that are fairly recent. What's his budget like? Two to three grand should snatch a decent car. What are his preferences, if any?
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Re: Cars for Tim

Post by pvtnum11 on Fri Apr 09, 2010 10:43 pm

For Joeseph:

I would've written a shorter post, but I ran out of time.

I'd stay away from Neons, and anything from Dodge that uses the 3.3 liter V6, like the Intrepid. The Intrepids have a nich-higher than average failure rate due to drivetrain issues. Not that eveyr Intrepid is a lemon, but you run a higher than normal risk. Plus, changing the timing belts are a total nightmare.

A pointer on determining if an engine has been abused or neglected:

If it's like most engines I've seen or dealth with (and I'm not a mechanic - ask Oscar if you want to get really nitty-gritty) you can look into the valvetrain of practically any car on the planet without any special tools or removing stuff.

Pull off the oil fill cap - most are on a/the valve cover. You can now look into the valvetrain, and see what color the exposed metal is. Literally, looking inside the engine itself.

Note, some steel parts will be treated with a blax oxide coating, that was how they were made. I'm talking bare metal.

Silver: Good. The oil has been changed often, and wasn't cheap oil. That or it's low mileage. A high-mileage motor with silver untarnished parts is a keeper, it has been loved and taken care of. That or it got an enigne rebuild. Hard to go wrong, either way.

Golden: Okay. Oil may have been inferior grade, or it has high miles. Verify that the odometer has high miles. Low miles and gold may not be good.

Brown: Bad. Oil has been left in, or the engine is worn.

Black: RUN AWAY. Abused, and neglected. The rest of the car is probably going to show signs of abuse, too. Burnt clutch, worn brakes, crummy suspension, stuff like that.

Covered in 'caramel': RUN AWAY. The engine is sludging itself. The oil is thickening up and covering parts in crap. Bits of sludge may end up clogging and orifice and then you got parts being strved for lube, and then you'll tear things up - if it hasn't happened already.

A test drive is vital. One, you want to see if the stupid thing works. Two, it might be a pain for you to drive. No fun driving a car you hate, no matter if it works perfectly.

Used cars are a double-edged sword. I'll explain. New cars have warranties, they're more or les gauranteed to run, and they have much lower maintenance costs, being new.

Private party used cars can be bought with cold hard cash, eliminating a monthly paymnent nearly every time. However, there's no warranty, and odds are (if my past experiences indicate) that you'll be spending more on manintenance.

Still, a hundred a month on maintenance is FAR cheaper than what a new car payment can run you. 30k loan for five years is something like 500 a month, AND, since it's not your car, the lending institution you got the car loan from, WILL require you to fully insure it. Used cars? You can get by on the bare minimum insurance.

The other beauty about used cars? If you got it cheap enough, you can simply dump it in a year and go get another one. Beaters in particular, are the 'disposable Bic pens' of the automotive world. You can eat in it, you won't fret where to park it, you won't sweat leaving it parked under a tree or something, and not worry about hte faded paint getting tore up by bird doo - it's already dinged and faded and not very pretty anymore.

Dropping loads for a used car is okay, too, it might be a recent model, or be loaded with all the factory options, or be known as a well-made car.

I'd avoid European makes and models, as they tend to run higher than normal repair bills when stuff breaks, but they tend to be well-built. Older diesel Mercedes are nigh indestructable. the joke with a 300D motor is if it has around 300,000 miles on the original engine, it's just about broken in by now. Good luck finding one for sale, though, and you will pay out your nose for repairs.

American cars are for people who have masochistic tendencies. That's why I have a Trans Am - part brand loyalty, part mental retardation. If I had the cash, I'd go get myself a 1988 Trans Am GTA with the L98 5.7 all over again. I'm partial to GM. Ford MoCo makes some good stuff. Mopar had some lemons, and some really nice stuff. Generally, American stuff improved in the last decade. Not that it helped GM... Parts are CHEAP. I can score a water pump for my Buick for 20 bucks. For a european or asian car, that might pay for the gasket for the coolant pump.

Asian cars are a mixed lot. Honda and Toyota have outstanding engineering, but go about it differently. Toyota tends to over-engineer their stuff, like the infamous 2JZ motors. Honda shaves weight everywhere to make it as efficient as possible. Both do a very good job. You can't swing a dead cat without hitting an older Toyota still on the road nowadays, ssimiliar with Honda. Nissan... Mixed results. I've seen good ones, and bad ones. Their trucks seem to last - that or they're popular for the minitruck crowd. Avoid early Hyundai's. Later ones are much better, and still very affordable. I have little experience in Mazda's, Mitsubishi's and Suzuki's. Lexus, Acura and Infinity are just higher-priced versions of Toyota, Honda and Nissan. Not much point in buying them unless it's a good deal or you want more luxury.
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Re: Cars for Tim

Post by pvtnum11 on Fri Apr 16, 2010 1:49 am

Wow, I wrote a book.

No wonder my posts usually don't generate a bunch of replies, I end up killing you all with Walls of Text.

And now, a bit of F-body factoids - I've grown up, but I still like my sports cars a little on the trashy side.

Tim, that T/A we looked at was a 305, running through a stock wheezer intake manifold , peanut cam and restrictive exhaust. Add to that the 700R4 automatic transmission and c-clip 10-bolt rear end, and it was a pretty basic Trans Am. Not a lot of options for that one. But heay, the body was nice and straight, and that means a lot with the age of the thrid-gen cars approaching thirty years old for the oldest of them. KITT replicas are beginnig to gain value today, unmolested early third-gen cars can fetch a pretty penny now.

Optional engines for that year (85? 86? I forget) *could* have been the more potent L69 carb'ed 305, with hotter cam, better intake and exhaust, or the really hot ticket option, the LB9 Tuned Port Injected 305, that didn't suffer from fuel vapor lock like the L69 did. the base motor of that era was the LG4, which, if you threw some simple boltons at it, could become better than the L69 without going broke. Same short block.

350's were not offered in Pontiacs until 1987, at which time, they switched ALL V8's from flat hydraulic camshaft/lifter sets to roller hydraulic cam/lifter sets, to free up some horses by reducing internal engine friction. My 1988 GTA had the L98 350 TPI mill in it. Definite torque monster. I miss that car. In 1986, 50 Camaro's were made with 350's in them, but they had no A/C and were more of demonstrator cars than cars meant to be sold to the public.

Carb'ed engines were dropped after 1987, never to appear again. The base motor after the carb'ed engines died the way of hte dinosaur was the L03 five-liter, using Trhottle Body Injection, in essence, a super-carb, using two large fuel injectors in a carb-looking unit on a traditional intake manifold. Your Camaro you got from Josh was an L03. Nice, reliable motor, not veyr high-powered, but it would get the job done. Also in 1987, the Formula came out, which ws the lighter base model car with the best drivetrain shived into it.

Simple hot-rodding. Take a small car and shove the biggest engine you can into it. Ford did it with the LX 5.0 Mustang - base-model body with the GT's drivetrain, and none of the GT's weight. It worked. Stil does today.

Your RS Camaro was Chevy's approach to the LX problem that Ford made, although you had to check a box to get a V8 into it, and it never came with the hot V8's. the Firebord Formula, however, had the L03 as the base engine, automatically, and you could check a box and get it with the LB9 or L98 as an option.

I regret not taking the RS off your hands when you deployed, that would've made a fun daily driver, but I already had the GTA and TTA at the time, I think. Plus I'm sure the missus would've said a firm and resounding NO.
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Re: Cars for Tim

Post by pvtnum11 on Fri Apr 16, 2010 10:22 pm

Woot, I have a vid of my TTA starting and idling on youtube.

I'll have to edit this later with a link, that or search for "TTA Start Idle" and see the crummy camera work in action, lol.
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Re: Cars for Tim

Post by pvtnum11 on Sat Apr 17, 2010 5:26 am

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pyp-45XVKoA

Yeah, my video camera skills are sorry.

And the car is sorry, too. Needs lots of TLC.
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Re: Cars for Tim

Post by pvtnum11 on Thu Jun 03, 2010 9:14 pm

Funny blurb I heard:

General Motors cars run bad longer than most other cars run at all.

True statement. I've owned ten vehicles over the last 11 years since I've first bought a car, and seven of them are/were GM products - the Vibe is a rebadged Toyota.

make model, year - couple word description
Hyndai Excel, 1989 - piece of trash
Pontiac Grand Prix SE, 1989 - the Bomber
Pontiac Grand Prix SE, 1996 - first nice car
Pontiac Trans AM GTA, 1988 - first taste of muscle
Pontiac Vibe, 2006 - 4-door mommy bus, only new car
Pontiac Firefird, 1987 - beater
Pontiac Trans AM TTA, 1989 - boost just kicked in yo
Mazda 323, 1990 - beater
Pontiac Firebird, 1989 - parts car
Buick Century, 1995 - 4-door luxury beater
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Re: Cars for Tim

Post by Ambush on Fri Jun 04, 2010 2:31 am

pvtnum11 wrote:Funny blurb I heard:

General Motors cars run bad longer than most other cars run at all.

True statement. I've owned ten vehicles over the last 11 years since I've first bought a car, and seven of them are/were GM products - the Vibe is a rebadged Toyota.

make model, year - couple word description
Hyndai Excel, 1989 - piece of trash
Pontiac Grand Prix SE, 1989 - the Bomber
Pontiac Grand Prix SE, 1996 - first nice car
Pontiac Trans AM GTA, 1988 - first taste of muscle
Pontiac Vibe, 2006 - 4-door mommy bus, only new car
Pontiac Firefird, 1987 - beater
Pontiac Trans AM TTA, 1989 - boost just kicked in yo
Mazda 323, 1990 - beater
Pontiac Firebird, 1989 - parts car
Buick Century, 1995 - 4-door luxury beater

That's cool man. Good to see you come on the forums because it pretty much died. Anyway, I'm content with my current vehicle. However, I would like another in addition to it. A sports car. It would be good also to have an alternate car to drive if one breaks down, or to lend if someone had need, to build credit in a diff way other than credit cards, would prepare me for getting a mortgage by establishing different type of credit, would reduce wear and tear in half by having a second vehicle...phew. There are more bennies, but that's just a few.

I've always wanted a Supra man. 93-98 model. I always talk about it, but deep down I know I'll probably never own one. My credit, bills and everything are in order and I have more control over my spending. So, I wouldn't feel guilty if I saved half the money for one and took a loan for the other half and paid payments on it.

However, this would be a good motive to save money. Because, if by the time I save the money I realize I didn't want one or something else took a priority like a house, then I would have all that money saved up for it. Me saving for a house on it's own isn't that motivating and will not happen anytime soon. I think deep in the back of my mind it will be too hard to fork over the money for the car in the end and I will just keep it and be glad I had something worth saving for.

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Re: Cars for Tim

Post by pvtnum11 on Mon Jun 07, 2010 5:03 pm

Yeah, high-performance cars can be fun. They can also be a a money and time pit. I look at my car almost every day and am reminded that it needs a lot fo work just to get it to showroom stock condition, nevermind really fast.

Heh, like stock 13-second quarter mile times? Fast. 0-to-60 in five seconds? Fast. That'll run with almost any stock vehicle off the showroom floor, except for the really hign-end stuff, like a 'Vette or the new Challengers and Camaros.

Bonus: Mine's cheaper and it's paid for. It just needs a lot of work. I'd be lucky to eke out 13's with it now.
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Re: Cars for Tim

Post by pvtnum11 on Thu Jun 17, 2010 6:25 pm



An AE-86 RWD Toyota Corolla.

You can find them here for way less than a Supra. They can come with the 4A-GE engine, which was pretty stout in terms of power and they have a real high red-line - if you get a GT-S version. The SR-5 trim level had a lower-rated engine.

Price is usually two to three grand to get, as opposed to around twenty for a Supra. They're usually just around a ton in terms of weight, which is LIGHT. Good handling, nice body lines, and if you don't molest it with stupid graphics and body kits, they can still turn heads today.

They have a healthy aftermarket for them and were hugely popular for official rally racing when they were new. Still very popular for the drifting scene, which I don't really consider a motor sport, but that's besides the point.

I could afford to get one pretty much on a whim - getting a Supra, I'd have ot save for about two years to get a car I'd be too scared to fiddle with.

Parts are cheaper, the car itself is cheaper, and it can still perform well. What's not to like?
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Re: Cars for Tim

Post by pvtnum11 on Fri Jun 18, 2010 6:48 pm

Looking to replace my beater before it comes up for safety. Probably get another Buick - I like being comfortable when I'm driving, and the beater, despite its myriad problems, always gave a smooth ride.

I'll probably sell the thing for a few hundred bucks and a list of the issues that are outstanding, just so the buyer knows what sort of stuff to take care of.

Looking to buy:
Regal GS with L67 V6 - boost just kicked in yo
Park Avenue Ultra - boost just kicked in yo

Both could be had with the L67 3.8-liter V6, with a roots-type supercharger bolted onto it. Modifications enable certain L67-equipped cars to run 13's and still be streetable. Lesser trim levels usually came with the naturally-aspirated L27 or L36 3.8-liter. The L32 supercharged engines are still pretty new, and I won't be seeing those in a used car in my price range for another five to ten years, lol. Better heads and supercharger unit, good for 260 horses. Even if I only manage to get an N/A L27/L36 car, it'll be a substantial improvement over what I drive now.

Basically, I got the boost bug again, but I want a comfy ride so the TTA will still stay mostly parked.
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