: '81 brougham idle issue

Angry Matt
07-26-09, 10:20 AM
I already posted this in the other engines section and don't mean to repost, but I think I'll have more luck here. I just bought an '81 brougham 2dr d'elegance. It's the nicest car I've ever owned and I've been after one for 10+ years, but the idle is all out of wack. It pulses like crazy when I come to a stop, so bad that it clunks and stalls sometimes. I unplugged the TPS and it made it way better, almost perfect, but I got emissions coming up and I don't think that's going to fly. I fixed a few vacuum lines that were rotted, and I think the next try is a new carb. For $20 I can get one from the yard tomorrow (about the cost of just the TPS). If anyone has any insight, please offer, I don't like computer controlled vehicles. Did I mention it has the awesome power of a Buick V-6? Maybe if this doesn't work out, I'll yank it and put a Honda vtec in it, I heard they're fast...:lol:

07-26-09, 12:43 PM
Matt, I'm not a mechanic although I wish you luck finding the solution. I know Buick made the 4.1 V6 - - have you tried posting the question on a Buick forum? I've always wanted to own a Cadillac, or even an Electra or Olds 98, with the 4.1 V6. What is it like to drive? I owned a 1981 Fleetwood Brougham Coupe with the V8-6-4 and loved the looks of the car although the driveability of that V8-6-4 engine was not so hot. I'd like a diesel Cad at some point too. Anyway, share your thoughts on the 4.1 V6 and maybe a some pictures of your new toy?? :) Dave

Angry Matt
07-26-09, 01:55 PM
It drives a lot nicer than I had expected (still a dog though). My buddy has had one for years and always loved them. I test drove a 1980 about a week before I found this and I think I like the v6 better, but it does kind of feel like it's working harder. I'm sure the response has a lot to do with the 3.23 ratio they put in these cars. I honestly can't believe the gas mileage. This thing blows away my '95 4.9 (mpg) and runs on 87! I also have an '81 coupe with a '70 472, gears, an eibach suspension (thanks to this site) and a bunch of other crap done to it. So I'm right where I want to be with a cruiser and a "hot rod".

07-26-09, 03:08 PM
WOW! I see you're doing a 90-92 front. Very nice! What is the gas mileage you're getting? I want to try the V6 even more now! I drive at boulevard speeds myself most of the time. By the way, I find the interior of your car to be absolutely delicious! Now THAT is a Cadillac!!! :)

07-26-09, 03:48 PM
Exact same interior as my 81. Very cool.

As far as your problems, start with a full tune up. Make sure you have your wires routed correctly. Plugs, wires, cap, rotor, timing, and check that TPS. There should be a spec for it in the FSM. Replace if it is out of spec. Don't replace your carb. Rebuild it if you need to. Buying a used carb will likely be no better than what you have. Change your fuel filter. Consult the vacuum routing diagram and make sure you have everything connected properly. Check your intake manifold bolts to make sure there are no leaks.

Angry Matt
07-26-09, 07:17 PM
I was out there tinkering before the storm comes just now, and the more I drive it, the better it seems to get. I kicked the idle down to about spec. It was up about 300 rpm and plugged the TPS back in. Took it for a ride and it drove a lot better. I'm wondering if it's because it sat for a while since the old man that owned it passed. The timing is around 3* advanced, that's ok for now. Weather pending, tomorrow I'll change the oil and fuel filter, and if I can scrounge up the change I'll do plugs and wires. The motor is a 30k mile rebuild.

The '90 front/rear end is on my deville. I'm not touching the brougham unless it's factory options for the year.

07-27-09, 12:20 PM
Hi Matt, I see the 90 front on the deVille - - are the two cars the same color?? I'm glad you're keeping the Fleetwood Coupe stock since I want you to sell it to me...right now! I just love your car! Good luck with it! Dave :)

Angry Matt
07-27-09, 03:26 PM
The deville is just a plain silver (really bad repaint) and the brougham is "norfolk" gray the previous owner called it (looks blue to my wife and I). I haven't looked into the exact name yet, but it is supposedly a repaint of a factory color and is one of the best jobs I've seen. No overspray and the pinstripe is even painted on. I'm probably going to get rid of the trim that runs up the middle of the side since it's on crooked anyway and I want the deville two toned the two grays that it is now. I just did the interior in the deville since the seats were trashed. I pulled gray cloth ones from the yard and put them in the blue interior but kept the blue leather headrests, armrests, and seatbelts and they came out awesome. They look custom, but still stock (if that makes any sense).

07-27-09, 03:45 PM
Very nice! Send some pix of the deville interior - - that sounds cool! Have fun with the V6 Fltwd Coupe - - I love it!

Angry Matt
07-30-09, 08:33 PM
Here's some shots of my "custom/stock" interior so far.

07-30-09, 08:45 PM
Very cool! That is definitely one of a kind!!! :)