Sorry, I meant *less mileage*. What about older or Auroras? Which year and model would work if any?
:noidea: Are you talking about swapping the engine & trans? I'd be more apt to swap the trans at 200K, though they are pretty reliable. A repair is a repair, but swapping to a lower mileage engine and/or trans is somewhat like insurance. How much you are willing to pay for it is up to you.
Wasn't the Aurora engine a "Shortstar" - smaller bore version of our 279 c.i. engine ?
Don't quote me, but I think the '98-'99 Northstars were pretty close, mechanical spec-wise. Pre-'98 used different electronics.
Yeah, pretty much.
The "Shortstar" was a V6 version - essentially 2 cylinders lopped off of a regular V8 N*, hence the name. The rest of the Auroras came with a smaller displacement (4.0L) V8 N*. I don't know what's interchangeable. Besides, even if you could get it in and hooked up, the PCM wouldn't know what to do with the displacement change (and there might be different cam profiles).
To sum up, the Aurora engines are not options.
I see. I thought the Auroras were smaller (4.0) but they were the same on the "outside" :)
I'd hate to put $3k+ and then have the tranny go soon.
I heard about an auxiliary radiator for the transmission. Anyone heard about something like that?
Are you referring to an external transmission cooler? Tow vehicles are often equipped with those, but the cooling of the transmission in your car is done through the radiator.
I know that. I figured it out when I removed the radiator for generator replacement and I saw RED fluid coming out. I was thinking of an external cooler, yes, as an addition.Quote:
Originally Posted by Faded Crest
anything you buy used is a crap-shoot -
it could be a lot better than what you have now -
or it could blow up within the first 10 miles of driving it -
the biggest advantage to using what you already have is:
FIRST - it is FREE -
NEXT - you know it's history - how well it has performed in the past -
and how well it has been maintained -
NOT to say either of those points are bulletproof -
your trans could crap-out today - or go another 200K miles -
a used trans with 50K miles on it could do exactly the same -
my rule-of-thumb has always been this -
without doing the necessary repairs -
in the condition it is in now -
what is your car worth now -
do you still like the car -
do you still like driving the car -
is the body and interior in nice acceptable condition -
how much will it cost to fix everything on the car that needs fixing -
combine the cost of fixing everything -
and what the car is worth as it sits now -
what could you purchase to replace the car
using that total amount of money -
would you be happy with that purchase -
your car is worth - maybe $500 as is -
head gasket job - lets call it $3000 -
fix AC system - $500 -
rear shocks - $100 -
antenna $100 -
misc another $300 -
that brings us to $4500 -
what could you buy for $4500 -
actually - I always say - if all you have to spend is $4500 -
you can only buy a $3500 car -
and have $1000 to replace whatever needs replacing right away -
tires - brakes - belts/hoses - etc - etc - etc -
hope this helps -
best to stick with the engine you know rather than taking a guess at a salvage unit ... who knows what might be wrong with it...
Alright, as crazy as this may sound (at least for me) I'm seriously considering this job. It may be a total failure, but I'd rather risk it and learn from it even though I may, in all likeliness, never open a shop in the future and use this experience solely to learn and, in the end, simply to keep the car running. If the car is worth around $500 as it is now, I'd be more than happy to give it all in for the purpose of the learning experience and the satisfaction of having done it (or at least tried).
Now I will take this thread in a different direction until my final "go", in order to figure out a basic cost of the entire adventure.
1. My main concern is finding the space. IF I find a supportive enough friend that would let me use his space (for a minimal cost) I'd see this as a big step forward.
2. I would need a list with the tools needed (extra credit for those who post pictures, prices, links, etc. :)) E.g. all the J tools that the FSM mentions, or similar. It would be helpful to have info on the big machinery (crane, pallet loader, digger, jack-hammer, nuclear ractor and what not, in order to move heavy stuff).
3. List of all possible things to do while at it (hoses and filters and gaskets and GM know what's hidden and only accessible while the engine is away from the car) along with any pertaining info. I'm planning to change the A/C compressor, which I understand is making noise when engaging, and has a leak somewhere around it. It could be just some part of it, but I don't know which one. (The compressor itself runs if the system is charged.)
4. Can this be mostly a "one man job"?
5. Any other info, suggestions and prayers.
I will of course study the existing threads already going (or finished) of this particular kind of project and will do my best to document the entire experience "for further generations". I know this might be an entire flop and I'm open to the idea of calling a salvage yard in the end if I can't finish it (for whatever reasons) as well as to the idea that the car may not be running for many more miles after finished (for whatever reason). I'm still very open to "Don't do it, man, it's not worth it!" and "go buy yourself a 200k miles" for the kind of comments to change my mind.
step one - before you do anything -
get the Factory Service Manual -
without one -
DON'T EVEN THINK ABOUT STARTING TO PULL STUFF APART -
after the FSM gets there -
read the entire process about removing the cradle -
if that doesn't intimidate you to the point of defeat -
THEN start collecting tools - etc -
I have the FSM. Two big books. Will start reading.
'99 is just 2 books? My '98 has 3. Better make sure there isn't a third one. If you think you can do it and the idea it excites you, then I think you can do it, too. There is a young guy on here, Maeng9981 who is around 20 years old and he did it. He's one of my heros. :thumbsup:
As for collecting tools, you would be much better off starting a new thread in the Northstar Performance & Technical forum. Most threads mention the tools you will need. Right off you need a 2 ton engine hoist, heavy chain, some kind of dollies to roll the cradle away with, at least 4 jack stands, full set of metric tools, extensions, etc. There are some specialty tools, but many can be worked around. Help will be there for you. Like I said, start a new thread over there.