: Think i need a new engine?

04-05-06, 04:44 PM
My Limousine has had some major engine trouble with the Olds 307 w/ QuadraJet carb...it is getting to the point i need another engine as this one's getting to be more a money pit than a reliable engine...it's now losing coolant, oil, and power steering fluid, and it won't idle without flooding itself..i have to throw the car into neutral below 35mph or it'd die before it stops and the trans is turning it....and after warming up, it takes about an hour to start or it'd flood till the battery's dead..

It's leaking coolant SOMEWHERE and i don't know exactly where, it was the heater core gushing, but it's still tricking from the middle right rear of the motor, hard to see with the exhaust even when lifted, it's definetely above the oil filter and below the valve cover...it'd run (only while moving) for 25 miles then it'd o-heat and rod knock and then shut itself down with the "STOP ENGINE OIL PRESS" lamp lit till it cools (why the "COOLANT TEMP" does bulb check but doesn't come on when needed is beyond me, the temp gage i installed is usually pegged at 280 degrees F where it's limit is, prolly warmer) and it's getting to be less safe to drive...the tranny, however, is perfect and shifts smooth..

Bottom line, instead of "band-aiding" the almost 200K 307 is there another series of BETTER motor to use? i have seen a ton of these 307s have problems and there's a field of cadillacs, buicks, and oldsmobiles in the junkyard with all having blown 307 engines...the hard part is i don't want an "emissions controlled" motor, i'd prefer to have a 307 or 350 from a late 60s Chevy truck, but the HEI distributor is the only thing they don't have...i have my car running better, still having problems leaking, but it does idle with the brainbox and fuse taken out, it therefore uses a ton of fuel, the climate control is dead, and the "CHECK ENGINE" is always lit, but it does run and run better...does that mean the car can run without the computer? i'd assume a regular distributer is like mine but with a separate coil and could just be wired like a points-based cadillac from the old days..if so, i'd like to have a older engine...is that possible?

04-05-06, 05:13 PM
An Olds 403 or Olds 350 is a 100% drop in (use the older Olds exhaust manifolds if you have the tubular steel ones). And a great power adder to boot.

Swapping in a Chevy is more difficult and timeconsuming. But parts are cheaper and more readily available. Expect a lot more work though (new front half exhaust, possible trans swap, reroute fuel lines, etc)

04-06-06, 12:48 PM
That's good...it really needs a bigger motor to pull the bigger car that it is....it's got major rod knocking today and won't hold coolant anymore...what cars would i look for to find the Olds 350 or 403? same models as the 307 ones? if so, i could just look at the sticker for the litres since i have a book that decodes the litres to find the displacements...

I didn't want to change the transmission since it's rock solid, so that was mostly my concern, trans compatibility, plus the different distributors..

04-06-06, 03:30 PM
older oldsmobiles buicks and I think some pontiacs had the Olds 350 in it. good luck on finding a 403. The olds 350 was a 5.7 liter. the 403 was a 6.6L.

04-06-06, 03:56 PM
Olds 350's were the workhorse of Olds Division from 1968 to 1980 when it was replaced by the 307. The Olds Diesel soldiered on til 1985. GM continued GM Diesels for service replacements in 1990. The DX Diesel block is an awesome foundation for a race motor........ Drop in a 425 crank with turned down jounrnals and bore block out an additional .125, .25 with sonic testing and you have a killer 440 inch motor!

Ok, Olds 350's were std issue in the Delta 88, Delmont 88 from 1968 to 1976. The 350 was optional in the Cutlass from 1968 to 1977. Cadillac Sevilles (Based on the X Body Nova, aka the K body Seville) were Olds 350's with analog port fuel injection similar to the Cadillac 425 and 500. Rated at 180 hp, they were the same long block as the 350 carb rated at 170 hp. Don't let the low hp rating fool you, the 350 Olds is one stout engine, and runs great. I have some black marks on some old back roads from mine (stock 77 350) that are 300+ foot long. That with a 2.14 open rear end....

There were 4 blocks, Diesel early (D), Diesel late (DX), Solid Main Web and Hollow Main Web. Everyone shuns the HMW blocks, but GM has reintroduced these on the LS1/LS2/LS6/LS7 as a good thing. Go figure. It is lighter, but isn't as solid >6000 rpm. ALL 403's are HMW (please, prove me wrong! No one has yet to be able to, pictures!! Must have!).

403's were common in Trans AM's (77-79), Buick/Olds Wagons, 98's/Electra's (77-79), 88's/LeSebre's (77-79) and Toro/Riviera's (Toro, E Body from 77-78, Rivi B body based RWD). Harder to find today, but they are out there. A good motor, I would take one in a heartbeat just to save.

Olds 400's, 400's, 425's and 455's are bolt ins too. Larger, some minor exhaust work needed, still easier than a SBChevy install. And a LOT more rewarding. But after a couple hole shots, the trans may not be too happy with you. As long as you never put slicks on or tow serious, the rear will survive fine.

04-06-06, 05:12 PM
Well, after a few hours of being stuck (again with the stop oil press lamp on, but not the coolant light what's up with that?) and re-insuring the engine has oil, (half way, it's within operating range) and coolant and doing some work, i got the thing running and lot driving (i live in a mobile home) and it's SEEMINGLY working for now, but i'm really tired of bandaiding the motor to have it yet again crap out on me after i get used to driving it...it's not some major tow hauler or whatnot, i'd just like a better motor other than the seemingly problematic 307 Olds...

I wish it had the oomph to lay tracks, if i tried flooring it, it'd HISSSSSSS then buck jump and die...i believe the engine is really toast since under load, it rod knocks majorly after reaching 180 degrees. no load, (park or neutral) it idles fine...go figure?

The engine (if not toast) i'd like to keep running till more funds come in...here's the oddball, it's leaking coolant SOMEWHERE cuz it runs out the bottom if i peer under the car, now it's seemingly from around the dead center rear of the motor. it comes and gos and isn't a constant dead leak, sometimes it'd run great, but others it leaks so badly you'd get a mile and it starts rod knocking...if it's started, it will run, then as it warms up, it starts running like a loud old truck banger (like a racing cam's installed, erratic idle--i'd say misfire) and it'll stall under 20mph unless it's thrown into neutral and the pedal to halfway down...sometimes WOT is the only way it'd stay running to put it back into drive...

The oil leak is now nonexistant since a new valve cover gasket has been installed (thank god i'm sick of an oil-smell infiltrating my classy interior) but the coolant leak being random baffles me, it's too tight to see where it's coming from, but it trails and drips under the oil pan, but not from there, oil's normal color...

It's running so rich (may be bad plugs?) it won't idle warm, and it has to sit for a couple HOURS to start or it'd "vapor lock" or whatever makes it "appear seized" since the starter won't turn it till it's cold to touch...then it's "clanging" on compression cycle, spits, then finally fires up and sounds terrible and it appears it's 1) getting too much fuel or 2) i seem to get water in fuel...