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LAME V6 Camaro

v6buicks

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Now that this car is running and driving, I figured I would start a thread dedicated to all the questions I’m about to pummel this group with. This is the first time I've really built anything to move quicker than stock, so I'm hoping to learn a lot from you guys before I make unnecessary mistakes. I also have a thread in the Turbobuick.com 3800 section, but I'm not getting as much input there due to a lack of audience. Here goes nothing...

The car I have is a 2002 Camaro with only ONE factory option (rear window defogger). The story supposedly goes that my buddy's dad was looking forever for a new Camaro because he never buys anything for a penny more than the best deal. He almost ran out of time as this was the final model year for the F-body, and '03s were already on the market. The dealer from which he found this car bought it for the sole purpose of being able to advertise "Brand new Camaros for under $10k", so this was the one he took home.

Fast forward to 2018. The car was structurally a wreck from living in the rust belt, but has a great interior, okay black paint, a third pedal, a 3800 (which is a plus in my book), and a lot of sentimental value since I remember riding in it when it was brand new. My buddy’s dad handed me the keys in hopes that I would enjoy it and make it a race car. To be honest, I don’t care for F-bodies, but I couldn't resist this one for the reasons above despite knowing that the floors were in desperate need of existing again.

I already had my dream car which is a 1986 Buick Regal Grand National. As much as I love that car, I like it the way it is in fairly stock form and modifying Buicks has gotten terribly expensive anyway. I figured a black 3800 Camaro could easily fulfill my childhood dreams of racing a badass turbo Buick V6 car while being on a budget, so here I am.

The car is now equipped with:
-6765 ebay turbo
-Precision PW40 wastegate
-Custom turbo exhaust utilizing a stock Camaro and FWD manifolds
-Air to air ebay intercooler
-AEM 50-1200 fuel pump
-Siemens Deka 80# fuel injectors
-Open 3” downpipe
-Custom 3” charge pipes
-Intense mail order tune
-Very ugly but functional upright radiator conversion (the core support was all just rust anyway) :dunno:
-Custom space saving AC delete without bypass pulley
-Midwest Chassis bumper support modified to mount my intercooler
-Spec Stage 1 clutch kit

The car is far from refined and has a lot of little issues to sort out, but I will leave the first post as sort of an introduction to that. I hope you enjoy hearing about it. It’s been fun to build!









 

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I'll fix your images, one sec.

Edit: Nvm, you beat me to it.
 

v6buicks

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Sorry! I'm still not used to to imgur, and still salty about photobucket changing it's terms. lol
 

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:fy: 3800 content, TCG LOVES 3800 content, trust me.
 

OffshoreDrilling

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This brings me back to the good ol days of TCG. People modding obscure cars. I want to hear vroom vroom noises!
 

v6buicks

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Thanks everyone!

I know this may be an odd question to ask online, but my car has been smoking pretty good since I got it running again. Has anybody ever by chance had a problem with their header wrap smoking a lot?

The engine is not consuming oil or coolant which was my first fear after redoing the head gaskets. Besides, I know those smells pretty well and it doesn't smell at all like either one. It smells more like burning paint which I used a lot of on this engine and exhaust. I expected that to smoke for a couple drive cycles as it cures, but it's been about 100 miles since changing the clutch and it's still just rolling out. The paint would have to be cured or burned off by now. The cheap header wrap is about the only thing left that that might still be curing or straight up burning. Any ideas?
 

v6buicks

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Also...

I haven't been driving it as much as I would like because I'm scared of hurting it. Maybe you all can convince me otherwise.

Keep in mind, I have not been hot rodding this thing around as much as a turbo intercooled E85 burning Camaro deserves to be. However, it is running on a mail order tune which is likely not accurate enough to really be trusted.

My question is about fuel trims. What should I realistically see? When cruising on the interstate, my LTFTs on both banks seem to climb really high and sometimes even max out at 19.5. However, my E85 wideband at the same time starts to read quite rich. (~7.5:1) I'm not really sure how to go about diagnosing that, but I figured it would help to understand what I'm looking at. Should I look at a long term and a short term on the same bank to see if they level each other out better? Thanks in advance. You guys have been a great help.
 

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First question - If it's just paint you bought from a parts store, it'll smoke until it burns off. Turbo exhaust gets EXTRA hot and really the only good way to "paint" those is a professional ceramic coating. And the header wrap lol.

Second - Are you able to make tuning adjustments? With HPT or what have you?
 

v6buicks

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First question - If it's just paint you bought from a parts store, it'll smoke until it burns off. Turbo exhaust gets EXTRA hot and really the only good way to "paint" those is a professional ceramic coating. And the header wrap lol.

Second - Are you able to make tuning adjustments? With HPT or what have you?
Even if it's the the stuff that's rated for the proper temp? I bought the VHT "ceramic" stuff for the exhaust and VHT engine paint for the rest. I noticed that the down pipe (unwrapped) is flaking pretty bad. That's good to know!

I didn't really want to bother with ceramic coating this hodge podge of booger welds, but I will if that's actually the problem. I just really don't want to undo that wrap job just to find out it's all fine. lol



And I don't have anything to make adjustments. I'm just monitoring my scan gauge. I have the Torque Pro app, but I'm having a hard time getting it to log everything I want.
 

1quick

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Also...

I haven't been driving it as much as I would like because I'm scared of hurting it. Maybe you all can convince me otherwise.

Keep in mind, I have not been hot rodding this thing around as much as a turbo intercooled E85 burning Camaro deserves to be. However, it is running on a mail order tune which is likely not accurate enough to really be trusted.

My question is about fuel trims. What should I realistically see? When cruising on the interstate, my LTFTs on both banks seem to climb really high and sometimes even max out at 19.5. However, my E85 wideband at the same time starts to read quite rich. (~7.5:1) I'm not really sure how to go about diagnosing that, but I figured it would help to understand what I'm looking at. Should I look at a long term and a short term on the same bank to see if they level each other out better? Thanks in advance. You guys have been a great help.
If your wideband is calibrated for e85 7.5:1 afr is pretty close that would be around 11.3:1 on a gas scale, remember stoich is like 9.7:1 for e85
 

v6buicks

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If your wideband is calibrated for e85 7.5:1 afr is pretty close that would be around 11.3:1 on a gas scale, remember stoich is like 9.7:1 for e85
I guess that's true. I have this guy.



I suppose it's not terribly rich, but it still doesn't seem consistent with what my narrow bands are trying to tell me.
 

Yaj Yak

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i mean, if you have a wideband, i dont think you should be paying attention to your narrow band personally.
 

v6buicks

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...and now that I'm looking at the picture, I think it was only 8.5:1 which is pretty good for cruising.

i mean, if you have a wideband, i dont think you should be paying attention to your narrow band personally.
Not at all? Should I just leave my scan gauge on both knock sensors then?
 

1quick

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I didn’t realize you were talking about at cruising I thought you were talking wot, it’s a touch rich but should be ok, id look into having someone tune it if you can’t
 

1quick

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...and now that I'm looking at the picture, I think it was only 8.5:1 which is pretty good for cruising.



Not at all? Should I just leave my scan gauge on both knock sensors then?
You likely won’t see knock with e85
 

v6buicks

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I didn’t realize you were talking about at cruising I thought you were talking wot, it’s a touch rich but should be ok, id look into having someone tune it if you can’t
Oh I will. I'm not even going to put the pedal down until I do. I'm probably going to that shop that Intense refers everyone to since they seem confident in being able to tune the semi-quirky 99+ stock ECM.

You likely won’t see knock with e85
I do get a little, when I try to accelerate in too low of a gear. lol If it were an auto I don't think it would though.

It seems that the consensus is that I'll be okay. I just like being able to watch stuff and make sure everything is okay. I have the gauge, so I might as well use it for something!
 

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Cruising tuning should be based off of the LTFT'S and STFT's. If your LTFT's are going to full fuel rich, which is a positive number, that would lead me to assume the tune you have doesn't quite have the right injector calibration for full E85, or perhaps not at all. Usually you can run E85 in a car that's calibrated for gasoline because the fuel trims can actually make up for the additional ethanol, but eventually will set a CEL because the fuel trims are maxed out.

You want to take an average over a good 5-10mile drive, stopping, cruising, accelerating for the LTFT's. If they're always hovering over 10, then the tune is lean and the enrichment under boost might not be enough. To me, it actually sounds like you need to trust the OEM o2 sensors more than that wideband, cause 2 of them are telling you the tune is lean and they are compensating, vs your wideband telling you different.
 

v6buicks

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Cruising tuning should be based off of the LTFT'S and STFT's. If your LTFT's are going to full fuel rich, which is a positive number, that would lead me to assume the tune you have doesn't quite have the right injector calibration for full E85, or perhaps not at all. Usually you can run E85 in a car that's calibrated for gasoline because the fuel trims can actually make up for the additional ethanol, but eventually will set a CEL because the fuel trims are maxed out.

You want to take an average over a good 5-10mile drive, stopping, cruising, accelerating for the LTFT's. If they're always hovering over 10, then the tune is lean and the enrichment under boost might not be enough. To me, it actually sounds like you need to trust the OEM o2 sensors more than that wideband, cause 2 of them are telling you the tune is lean and they are compensating, vs your wideband telling you different.
That was my thought process in regards to the narrowband actully telling me the condition of the tune, but I didn't think about the tune possibly being wrong for the fuel. Good idea.

I have one of those cheap little titration test tubes, but I've never used it. Do you think that will tell me enough if it's way off? I would hope that John set the tune up safely in that regard, but I don't know. I've gotten all my fuel from the same station, so I've at least got that variable in check.
 

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Next time you drive it, do a quick full throttle blip and see what number the LTFT's lock in at and report back.
 

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You just need to glance at it real quick, once you go WOT they lock instantly to what they currently understand the car needs.
 

v6buicks

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You just need to glance at it real quick, once you go WOT they lock instantly to what they currently understand the car needs.
I see. Do I have to go all the way to WOT for that to happen? I've never noticed that, but I also haven't gone WOT yet. I'm paranoid about hurting it. lol
 

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Yeah, once the computer sees 100% throttle the fuel trims lock. You probably won't even see boost, just you just to gas it for like 1-2 seconds to have a look where they lock in at.
 

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