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Cadillac CTS First Generation Forum - 2003 - 2007 Discussion, My piece of sh!t Cadillac in Cadillac CTS Coupe, Sport Sedan and Sport Wagon Forums; so this is my build thread first of all, I'm not a mechanic I just really like cars, everything I ...
  1. #1
    Ikera's Avatar
    Ikera is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Smile My piece of sh!t Cadillac

    so this is my build thread

    first of all, I'm not a mechanic I just really like cars, everything I know about car I learned from reading online forums. My workmanship might be questionable, and I do take a lot of shortcuts.

    anyway I bought my CTS on April 26, 2013
    2003 Cadillac CTS Luxury Sport
    3.2L V6 220hp 218lb-ft
    5-Speed Auto
    curb weight 3,600lbs


    when I was buying this car I didn't care about power or handling, because I still had my Turbocharged 240sx with 250HP and 900lbs lighter and was super fun to drive.

    modifying this car to make it faster or anything like that would just as much waste of the money as trying to make an S13 look like modern car

    anyway here are some pics

    when I first bought it


    the guy sold it for cheap because it had problems and engine check light on
    a quick OBD scan showed what I needed to do to get rid of the check light

    2 Oxygen sensor...


    later I found out the PCV system was clogged and the engine is leaking oil from both valve cover gaskets, front main seal and rear main seal or oil filter adapter or that area.

    changed valve cover gaskets and spark plugs, a 20min job on my 240sx takes 4hours on the CTS





    never seen this before, but for some reason the spark plugs were rusted



    I'm surprised it was able to run without misfire with these plugs




    also found out one of the rims was cracked and was leaking air, replaced them with aftermarket rims




    installed H&R CTS-V lowering springs, because I'm cheap and because I didn't want to ruin the Cadillac Ride with coils




    It turns out these springs are way too stiff

    And here is my Nissan 240sx








    anyway it's getting late, I'll upload more pictures later

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  3. #2
    Ikera's Avatar
    Ikera is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: My piece of sh!t Cadillac

    while installing the lowering springs I found out both front lower ball joins, one upper ball joint and one tire rod end were dead. Also one of the front brake lines was severely rusted


    Ordered myself a Box full of "Problem Solvers" by Moog from RockAuto.com


    took me while to figure out how to use it

    lower ball join out and tie rod removed

    pressing in new ball join and installed a new tie rod end


    old vs new


    replaced both front brake lines, installed... I know they look strange, twisted and awkward but this is the correct way to install them.


    my problems have been solved

  4. #3
    johnsav's Avatar
    johnsav is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: My piece of sh!t Cadillac

    I think you knew what you were getting into when you bought it and you did a good job, I didn't know yours was a luxury sport too! needs tints...I was lucky with mine just small maintenance since i bought it with 110,000 it was expected, to have to buy new parts.

  5. #4
    TheBrown57's Avatar
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    Re: My piece of sh!t Cadillac

    My 03 has been good to me for the most part and I intend to keep her till she dies (currently at 146k bought with 108) Great work on yours Ikera! I think I'll start a build log on here for mine as well once I start putting the sound system in it.

  6. #5
    Ikera's Avatar
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    Re: My piece of sh!t Cadillac

    Quote Originally Posted by TheBrown57 View Post
    My 03 has been good to me for the most part and I intend to keep her till she dies (currently at 146k bought with 108) Great work on yours Ikera! I think I'll start a build log on here for mine as well once I start putting the sound system in it.
    Starting a build log is always a good idea, most car forums have whole subsection for build logs and I love looking at what other people doing with their cars.

    Quote Originally Posted by johnsav View Post
    I think you knew what you were getting into when you bought it and you did a good job, I didn't know yours was a luxury sport too! needs tints...I was lucky with mine just small maintenance since i bought it with 110,000 it was expected, to have to buy new parts.
    Actually I'm still not sure what I go myself into, every time I find a new problem makes me want to cut my loses and sell the car.
    anyway on a happy note, I agree about the Tint! not only does tint make a car look cooler it also makes it more comfortable!


    Update time

    since I wasn't sure on the service history on the car I decided to replace the timing belt just in case it was never done before.


    Bought the timing belt kit, water pump, thermostat and the tool kit for changing timing belt














    it wasn't too difficult, but very nerve wracking. I've read a lot of horror stories about the belt snapping or skipping few weeks after replacement due to incorrect tension.

    at this time I found out that the variable intake valve was seized and rusted, I tried to clean it and make it functional but eventually just disabled it and simplified the all vacuum line mess

    before


    after

    I left the valve in open position (open = low RPM torque, closed = high RPM power)


    and here is a little preview of what's next


    TheBrown57 and TF Eftusk like this.

  7. #6
    TheBrown57's Avatar
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    Re: My piece of sh!t Cadillac

    I have a build log on a different forum for car audio for my CTS which has yet to really get updated. I have my timing belt replacement coming up within a month. I think I will go ahead and start my build log later today when on my lunch break. Liking those rims a lot as well man, good choice!

  8. #7
    TF Eftusk is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: My piece of sh!t Cadillac

    It looks like you have a laptop or a tablet hooked up to your CTS to get the codes. How do you do that?

  9. #8
    Ikera's Avatar
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    Re: My piece of sh!t Cadillac

    Quote Originally Posted by TF Eftusk View Post
    It looks like you have a laptop or a tablet hooked up to your CTS to get the codes. How do you do that?
    easy, you can buy a USB OBDII scanner from eBay for less than $20 software and shipping included. Or you can also buy a wireless BlueTooth scanner and pull codes with your cellphone.

    I like the software for PC EasyOBD II, you can pull codes, view stored codes, view freeze frame when the code was triggered, see sensor readings in real time, and you can see if your car is ready for the smog inspection. Here in BC they only scan the computer for sensor readyness and readings. this software will tell you if the sensors are ready and if there was enough date collected to confirm that all systems are functional.

    anyway it's really cool stuff and it's really cheap, I think everyone should have these cables


    I would recommend ELM327 Type scanner, and seems to be the most popular too.
    here is a pic of how it would look like

  10. #9
    Ikera's Avatar
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    Re: My piece of sh!t Cadillac

    update time~

    but first let me tell you about different types of wheel fitment; sunk, flush, poke and HELLAFLUSH

    Sunk - looks stupid, high positive offset rims, the wheel look sunk into the chassis
    Flush - looks clean! rolling fender required for clearance
    Poke - looks different, low offset rims, fenders need to be rolled and pulled
    HELLAFLUSH - looks cool and stupid, near 0 offset rims, high positive camber, with fenders butchered to the max and still don't fit


    the fitment on my 240sx was "poke"

    Rota Grid 18x9.5 + 15


    the fitment I wanted for my Cadillac was "flush"
    so I was looking for wider rims +8" with mid offset ~+30 (IIRC stock rims are 17x7.5" +45)
    so I found these rims on craigslist


    ADR M-Sport 19x8.5 +35 for $250, I was like damn that's an awesome deal!
    not a fan of +19" rims, but the everything else was perfect


    some shady guy sold these rims to me out of the back of a van in a ghetto part of Vancouver.


    and he lied about the bolt pattern or didn't know what the bolt patter was... which make him even more shady.
    soon after getting the rims home I've discovered the rims have 5X120 bolt patter (BMW bolt patter)


    anyway since I got the rims for a good deal, I decided to buy slim bolt patter adapter to make them fit
    5x115 to 5x120 20mm slim adapter - $210 shipped on eBay
    and picked out a set of almost new 235/45/19 tires on craigslist for $250
    got the tires mounted for $110
    and here are the results




    the tires barely fit, had to remove and modify inner fenders, and hammer in some edges


    and of course I had to roll the fenders



    The tires are a little too thick


    and then I got the windows tinted too 35% all around
    35% precut tint ~$40 shipped on eBay



    stock window tint is 70% VLT
    so by my calculation
    70% VLT + 35% VLT = 24.5% VLT

    very happy with the result, not too dark and not too light ether.
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    Re: My piece of sh!t Cadillac

    Looks like you killed someone on that pick with the fender rolling
    Looks good man!

  12. #11
    AAIIIC's Avatar
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    Re: My piece of sh!t Cadillac

    Those ADR wheels look good on the car - I'm impressed they fit that well considering the width and the low offset (with the spacer/adapters in there). Definitely could've saved yourself some heartache on fitment with better tire sizing, but I guess a deal is a deal.

    And thanks for sharing the pics of the balljoint replacement. I've seen a number of threads in which folks asked about whether the control arms are serviceable, but this is the first time I've seen someone actually post up pics showing how to replace the balljoint. Good stuff!
    '05 Stealth Grey CTS-V, Hyper Silver Linea Corse Venetos w/Continental ExtremeContact DWs (summer), black Team Dynamics ProRace 1.2 wheels with 275/35-18 R-compounds (track), Hyperblack Rota Torques (winter), KW Variant3s, V2 front brakes, Hotchkis rear sway bar, EPS cam, TEA-ported 243 heads, FAST92 intake w/LS2 TB, JBA Camaro/G8 1-3/4" shorty headers w/JBA cat pipes, Corsa exhaust, UUC motor and tranny mounts, UUC shifter, MAPerformance trailing arms, Specter cradle bushings, etc...

  13. #12
    Static1120 is offline Cadillac Owners Member
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    Re: My piece of sh!t Cadillac

    Thanks for the Post Very useful for getting to know our cars much better

  14. #13
    Ikera's Avatar
    Ikera is offline Cadillac Owners Fanatic
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    Re: My piece of sh!t Cadillac

    Quote Originally Posted by TheBrown57 View Post
    Looks like you killed someone on that pick with the fender rolling
    Looks good man!
    my face... I killed my face... that bat slipped from under the fender and hit me right in the face. Took 3 weeks for my nose to fully recover.


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    Ikera's Avatar
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    Re: My piece of sh!t Cadillac

    anyways I didn't keep these tires for very long... they just didn't look right
    so swapped them out for 235/35/19 tires


    a little too thin for my liking but at least they looked better

    Also at the same time I was trying to fix one of my headlights, the projector inside the headlight broke off
    in order to fix it I had to open the headlight by heating it up and removing the lens.
    and I have done this before with Taillights successfully... this head light was a different story

    I've braked it in the oven 5 times, trying to open the headlight and each time increasing the temperature.

    anyway on the 5th try the headlight spontaneously melted



    well I didn't care too much since the headlight was broken anyway.

    since stock HID Headlights /w washers are ridiculously expensive, I decided to buy aftermarket CCFL Dual Halo headlights
    here is what I received

    these are not CCFL halo headlights, these are LED Halo headlights, because eBay seller who sold them to me has no idea what CCFL or LED even means and advertising them as CCFL headlights... needless to say I returned them for full refund.

    anyway here are some pic on my trip 6000km (3700mi) trip in US
    Drove from Vancouver, BC to Las Vegas, NV in 23hours









    went to see Grand Canyon, AZ latter




    and bunch of other places




    San Fransisco, CA


    n'stuff
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  16. #15
    TheBrown57's Avatar
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    Re: My piece of sh!t Cadillac

    Quote Originally Posted by Ikera View Post
    my face... I killed my face... that bat slipped from under the fender and hit me right in the face. Took 3 weeks for my nose to fully recover.


    OUCH! Well at least you fully recovered

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