3800 Supercharged Astre

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Re: 3800 Supercharged Astre

Postby vegastre » Thu Feb 20, 2014 1:41 am

one of a kind build there.


I'm still not sure what got into me =) I really would not recommend the supercharger route but a 3800 naturally aspirated would not be terribly difficult for those with just a bit of fab skills. As far as V6 engines the 3800 is solid and a good choice.
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Re: 3800 Supercharged Astre

Postby vegastre » Thu Feb 20, 2014 1:48 am

Snap On sockets?


Good eye, ya, a single that has been knocking around in my box for thirty years. I didn't hesitate because I felt it served a higher calling not to mention it was just the right size. The taper on the end was exceptionally important.
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Re: 3800 Supercharged Astre

Postby 72 SS PNL » Fri Feb 21, 2014 1:36 am

looks good !!
first and best car owned 72 GT(changed to SS) panel wagon

pictures of the car from 86 - http://www.myrideisme.com/Garage/06_IBM_GOAT/955
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Re: 3800 Supercharged Astre

Postby vegastre » Sat Mar 15, 2014 3:04 pm

March Update

As promised with monthly report =) This is more of a wiring update than anything else. At this point I sound like a broken record but creating a wiring harness for the SC from scratch is pretty involved and time consuming. Originally I thought I could wire it up in 2-3 weeks but I am 3 weeks in at this point and at least another two to go if I get good weather. In basic form this is a 'Stand Alone Harness' with its own fuse block and relays. Let me add here I spent a week just stripping down the stock wiring harness to build this one. Grounding is pretty important with these motors so I am going for overkill.

Mundane stuff and nothing interesting or pretty to look at except the very cool battery terminals I found on Ebay. As far as pretty its difficult to run computer wire all over your motor and hide it so I am trying to be as neat as possible with the ribbed covering. I'm at that point where I can visualize the completed harness and it should look pretty good, besides this is just a cruiser and not a show car. I remind myself of this every time I start getting all anal with over the top details. The best report is stripping wires and soldering is quickly coming to an end, woo-hoo!
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Re: 3800 Supercharged Astre

Postby vegastre » Sun May 18, 2014 8:56 pm

April/May update

Shade Tree Mechanic Report

Progress has been slower than anticipated for the last couple of months. I corrected motor and pinion angle. No big deal just time consuming lying on the ground. Tunnel mods finished for the 5-speed and the location is just about perfect. The tilted Firebird bell trans angle could have not worked out better. The entire clutch set up is right on the mark and finished. I completely redesigned and rebuilt my console to fit the five speed and will post pics as soon as its painted.The throttle body cavity is just about finished and very little tweaks left. Under hood wiring is in the final stages and going slow because of one small problem...

WATER, I have all my electronics at the front of the engine bay and as you probably know when it rains water pours into the engine compartment from water rolling off the front where the hood meets the top valance. This needs a rubber seal and I'm stuck on what will do the job. It has to be simple and unobtrusive yet water tight when the hood is closed.

Anyway this is just a small amount of all the tweaks I have been doing the last couple of months. Its turned into the "never ending list".
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Re: 3800 Supercharged Astre

Postby zeke » Sun May 18, 2014 9:14 pm

This site has some nice o-ringed enclosures: http://www.polycase.com/
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Re: 3800 Supercharged Astre

Postby vegastre » Mon May 19, 2014 1:16 pm

Thanks Zeke,
But the ECM needs air flowing over it to cool. I think I have a seal figured out which is a very thin strip of of rubber glued to the entire leading front edge of the hood. When closed the rubber seals to the edge of the valance and is hardly noticeable.
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Re: 3800 Supercharged Astre

Postby raysmust » Mon May 19, 2014 1:27 pm

That ECM does not need air, I have installed a few and I always install them inside the car.
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Re: 3800 Supercharged Astre

Postby vegastre » Mon May 19, 2014 2:08 pm

That ECM does not need air


That very well could be true. The ECM I have has what appears to be heat sinks (fins). Generally speaking ECM are mounted in the air box intake which again appears to me promotes some sort of air flow. I don't know that they produce a great amount of internal heat but more protection from external heat. So, if your ECM is inside the interior compartment your good to go =). Just a guess mind you because what I know about ECM design could be put in a thimble.
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Re: 3800 Supercharged Astre

Postby zeke » Mon May 19, 2014 2:20 pm

If you have the length in your harness Phil, I feel the ECM is best located inside the dry cabin area away from engine heat. I used the molded grommet from the donor van and carefully removed it from the harness, did some trimming and made the proper size hole in the firewall. The gm ecm connectors have removable locks on them which makes them a little smaller to be able to pass thru from the engine side easier.
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Re: 3800 Supercharged Astre

Postby vegastre » Mon May 19, 2014 2:54 pm

ECM is best located inside the dry cabin area away from engine heat


I 100% agree and that is what I had planned but the throttle body and related duct work took up more room than I had planned on. The only other place was under the seat and H-Body rail height is minimal. I will admit even though I took into account the heat I completely overlooked the water problem. Oddly enough the deciding factor for under the hood was looking at my Chevy Blazer because the PCM is mounted out in the open under the hood. In fact it is mounted on top of the overflow/fill container. Interesting note is I tested the Blazer PCM out the other day by spaying it with a garden water hose while the car was running and then took it to the car wash and sprayed it down with a pressure washer trying to get the PCM to stall the motor. It ran fine. The problem I am trying to avoid is water rolling off the hood seeping down on top of the PCM and collecting and sitting where as with the Blazer the PCM is mounted away from any sort of standing water or seepage.
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Re: 3800 Supercharged Astre

Postby raysmust » Mon May 19, 2014 2:58 pm

Those PCMs are sealed so getting wet is fine. I would not recommend submersing it in water but they are sealed.
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Re: 3800 Supercharged Astre

Postby vegastre » Thu Jul 31, 2014 8:37 pm

June/July Update

In Texas in the summer I can only work on the car a few hours in the morning a few days a week. In fact some mornings start off close to 90F degrees. So, I can't lie =) work has slowed but still progress is being made. The big hump is I have worked out all the radiator hoses angles, curves, splices. Made a dozen trips to the parts store. Very, very time consuming not to mentioned I have rewired a portion of the harness to give it a better flow. Luckily the 3800 although designed for front wheel drive cars they did come in Camaros and Firebirds so this helped a bit on hose location. Currently I'm measuring and fitting the power steering hoses which is another whole deal, very time consuming. The design is the hard part, making the part and bolting it on is the easy part. I don't even want to mention how I get sidetracked. I recently built a complete console for the SJ interior but believe it or not I do see light at the end of the tunnel, I think.
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Re: 3800 Supercharged Astre

Postby TimMcCabe » Tue Aug 05, 2014 1:27 pm

I mounted the ECM for my TPI up over top of the glove box, it's worked fine there for the last 18 years :)
My Cosworth Vega has the ECM mounted up in the same area above the glove box, and it's much bigger then the TPI ECM, so there is lots of real estate available up there.
There is some heat generated by the various drivers in the ECM, but not as much as say the average 100 watt stereo amplifier.
Any heat generated will radiate off into the surrounding air, there is no need to have it mounted in the airflow.

Cheers,
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Re: 3800 Supercharged Astre

Postby vegastre » Tue Aug 05, 2014 2:05 pm

I mounted the ECM for my TPI up over top of the glove box


Right, handy place for sure...
But...This is where my custom heater box mounts. Real-estate is simply at a premium with the TB and related duct work. I considered mounting it on the tunnel with a nice cover. I went as far as making a cardboard template and painting it to see how it looked. I didn't like the looks so I said, "the heck with it" and mounted it out in the engine bay. Good to know about the drivers but to be honest I think airflow may be a problem because of the inherent high temps created by a H-Body engine compartment. We shall see.

~You might find this interesting: space is so tight I built a radio delete out of an old inop AM radio using only the fascia, knobs and pointer. Tunes will be handles by a remote unit in the back.
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