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Old 08-07-2010, 03:01 AM   #1
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Default head and intake manifold swap possible ?

I have a 92 Regal which runs great has good power , but looks really bad. The body is reverting into (rust) partcles. I also have a 90 Eighty Eight 2 door. Runs good but not as fast as the Regal. I'm thinking it'* the gearing. Anyway i am going to do a little work to thr 90 and figured i;d keep t on the road till everything is done. Meaning use the Regal'* heads (ported) and upper and lower intake Ported) if they will fit. Plans are port heads , HR rockers , power log. I'd like to get better gears too , 2.97 (Buick BLT) or 3.06 from a Bonne SSE. Pretty shure the Regal tranny won't work in the Eighty Eight.

As a side note when i say tranny i mean transmission. I know a regal tranny (man in womans dress) will fit in the car. I say this because i was working in a store the other day and the female mgr asked me " if i leave my box open, you won't stick your hand in it will you ?" What !!
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Old 08-07-2010, 03:16 AM   #2
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I have a 92 Regal which runs great has good power , but looks really bad. The body is reverting into (rust) partcles. I also have a 90 Eighty Eight 2 door. Runs good but not as fast as the Regal. I'm thinking it'* the gearing. Anyway i am going to do a little work to thr 90 and figured i;d keep t on the road till everything is done. Meaning use the Regal'* heads (ported) and upper and lower intake Ported) if they will fit. Plans are port heads , HR rockers , power log. I'd like to get better gears too , 2.97 (Buick BLT) or 3.06 from a Bonne SSE. Pretty shure the Regal tranny won't work in the Eighty Eight.

As a side note when i say tranny i mean transmission. I know a regal tranny (man in womans dress) will fit in the car. I say this because i was working in a store the other day and the female mgr asked me " if i leave my box open, you won't stick your hand in it will you ?" What !!
The heads and intakes should swap over just fine, but I'm not sure if the throttle body will bolt up. That might be a problem considering the 88 is tuned for its specific engine using its specific sensors.

As for the HR rockers, not worth it. I had them for 60k miles and sold them to someone else here on this board. Honestly, you're wasting your time if you're trying to make a Series 1 3800 faster, and I mean that in the best of ways. This was my first car and I spent hundreds of hours of my time and hundreds of dollars trying to make that engine faster, through cold air intake, ported heads, ported lower intake manifold, modified upper intake plenum, and 1.8 ratio roller rockers, only to realize that compared to the time and money I put into it, my gains were minimal.

I know you can probably only work with what you have, but this is the straight truth, that Series 1 3800 will not go anywhere as far as performance goes. It is very limited by the head design, and any serious money put into it to get it to perform better would be much better invested in a Supercharged Series 2 3800 engine swap.

Feel free to ask me other questions about my experience. I've been there and done that with this engine, and know just about all there is to know in regard to Series 1 3800 performance.
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Old 08-07-2010, 09:48 AM   #3
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I was thinking about a SC swap ,I've seen whole cars for $500 running, which is the way i would go due to having everything needed and knowing how it runs. But my business went down the tubes. It'* more of a part time hobby now. That'* what the IRS tells me. Original plan was keep it stock, then just rims moving into catspault launcher now. I'm sure you know what i mean. I dont drive it like a hot rod or sports car. I did get a Bonne SSEI suspention for it Last summer and still havent installed yet. Only installed the STB, upgraded the coil packs and slotted front brakes with new brake hoses front and rear..

Anyway the TB not working makes sense. I asume the TB bolt pattern is different too? I'll have to check on the head ported prices before i decide on that. Every says the yella terra rockers make a diff but i can prob get the same perf out of re-gearing, cheaper than all that other work anyway. I am going to do the power log though
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Old 08-07-2010, 10:05 AM   #4
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By the way xtremerevolution thanks for the reply and info.
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Old 08-07-2010, 12:29 PM   #5
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I was thinking about a SC swap ,I've seen whole cars for $500 running, which is the way i would go due to having everything needed and knowing how it runs. But my business went down the tubes. It'* more of a part time hobby now. That'* what the IRS tells me. Original plan was keep it stock, then just rims moving into catspault launcher now. I'm sure you know what i mean. I dont drive it like a hot rod or sports car. I did get a Bonne SSEI suspention for it Last summer and still havent installed yet. Only installed the STB, upgraded the coil packs and slotted front brakes with new brake hoses front and rear..

Anyway the TB not working makes sense. I asume the TB bolt pattern is different too? I'll have to check on the head ported prices before i decide on that. Every says the yella terra rockers make a diff but i can prob get the same perf out of re-gearing, cheaper than all that other work anyway. I am going to do the power log though
The series 1 3800 front manifold actually flows very well compared to the Series 2.

Where do you live? I'm getting rid of my ported heads since I'm having that supercharged 3800 swap and I'll let them go for close to nothing as I just need them out of my buddy'* garage.
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Old 08-07-2010, 02:38 PM   #6
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I'm in New York. Did you port them yourself or have them done? Asking just to ask because i'm wondering how much to get them done. So who really uses the power log , W-body guy'* and 92 up Bonne Lesabre etc? Are thier exh mani'* the same as ours ? I don't want to make my exh loud, but pretty sure the Bonne SSE/SSEI muffler flows better. Let me know what you need for the heads shipped 10473 if your willing.
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Old 08-07-2010, 03:13 PM   #7
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A few pics of the car as it sits now.
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head and intake manifold swap possible ?-across-street-001.jpg   head and intake manifold swap possible ?-larchmont-015.jpg   head and intake manifold swap possible ?-my-88-mc-orchard-beach-006.jpg  
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Old 08-07-2010, 10:37 PM   #8
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I ported them myself. Expect a professional performance shop to charge you upward of $500 to port them for you. This kind of stuff is time consuming, requires tools, and is not cheap. I can send you pictures.

Expect shipping to be around $80-$100. These things each weigh 45 pounds, and that'* not cheap to ship. I wouldn't charge you more than $50 for them since I just want them gone. Keep in mind, they use the 94+ rocker arms, which are roller rockers from the factory. You'll need to pull those off of a junkyard motor if I send you these heads.

The power log is used by guys with the Series 2 3800. Unlike your Series 1 3800 which has a power log type manifold, the Series 2 3800 motors have a cast iron front manifold that is very horribly cast and is very restrictive. That'* why they usually use powerlogs.

Don't waste money on mufflers if you're going for flow; it won't make a difference. If you want it a bit louder, consider having your resonator removed.
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Old 08-08-2010, 05:29 PM   #9
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Price sounds good, shipping is shipping. I know machining is exp thats why i'm not going 4.7 on my jeep. Did you say you ported the lower intake and worked the upper too and do you still have them ? Did you feel any seat of pants difference in the end ? Remember not looking for a rocket.
As far as the exhaust, i don't want louder. I was thinking of using the 90 Bonne SSE style muffler when i finnally need a new one unless the 92 up SSEI flows better.
So i should leave the exh alone, dont need a better down pipe or anything. My Jeep is loud enough.
Figured if the heads and intake flow better the exh should too. I dont even want a CAI too noisey (on my Jeep too).

Was looking at ZZP site , they tell to use all the exh and rockers they sell for a marked improvement. I would too if thats how i was paying my bills. Anyway i thought of the 1.9 ratio modified rockers . 275 +50 core plus ship gets expensive if you say little or no benifit. I actually have Yella Terras for my Jeep (got them for 125 shipped new) but not installed yet.
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Old 08-08-2010, 06:08 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by purplexj View Post
Price sounds good, shipping is shipping. I know machining is exp thats why i'm not going 4.7 on my jeep. Did you say you ported the lower intake and worked the upper too and do you still have them ? Did you feel any seat of pants difference in the end ? Remember not looking for a rocket.
As far as the exhaust, i don't want louder. I was thinking of using the 90 Bonne SSE style muffler when i finnally need a new one unless the 92 up SSEI flows better.
So i should leave the exh alone, dont need a better down pipe or anything. My Jeep is loud enough.
Figured if the heads and intake flow better the exh should too. I dont even want a CAI too noisey (on my Jeep too).

Was looking at ZZP site , they tell to use all the exh and rockers they sell for a marked improvement. I would too if thats how i was paying my bills. Anyway i thought of the 1.9 ratio modified rockers . 275 +50 core plus ship gets expensive if you say little or no benifit. I actually have Yella Terras for my Jeep (got them for 125 shipped new) but not installed yet.
ZZP'* modified 1.9 rockers are for the Series 2 motor. Actually, there aren't any roller rockers available for your motors. The reason being is that engines made on and before 1993 had 3/8" rocker studs, while 1994-1995 Series 1 3800'* had 1.6 ratio roller fulcrum (not roller tip) rockers from the factory and 5/16" studs. My heads are the 5/16".

I did call the guy that'* doing the swap, and he still has the engine so I can get you those heads pulled and shipped out. You'll need new head gaskets, head bolts, and lower intake manifold gaskets at a minimum if you want to do this job.

There was definitely a good seat in the pants difference, especially toward the top end. I took my wife for a ride after I got the new heads in and she said "wow, this is almost like the Bonneville" with the Bonneville being a 4.6L Northstar V8. Its not insane of a difference, but I'd be wiling to bet you could pick up 20-25hp easily.

Here are some pictures of the work. It was mostly grinding out and smoothing casting imperfections to reduce turbulence.

Here are the casting imperfections on intake and exhaust ports. Notice the ridge around the port, and the sharp edges. Not good for flow.
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Here'* what I did to the exhaust ports:
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More porting work:
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All this was done with a dremel and grinding stones. If I were you, I'd just get a dremel yourself, a bunch of grinding stones, and do the same thing I did. Try to match it up. Smooth out ridges that shouldn't be there, open up those exhaust port exits a bit, be very careful not to nick the valve seat or valve guide, take your time, and it should come out nicely. It would be cheaper for you than getting these heads shipped, but if you want them, I'll sell them to you. I also have my ported LIM, which was the first thing I've ever ported in my life. Its a rough Job, but I noticed much better throttle response and slightly better top end once I got that in there.

Porting these heads will be the single best thing you can do to improve performance on Series 1 3800'*. I tried rockers, CAI, ported LIM, and exhaust, and the pistons and rods are too weak for forced induction or long term nitrous. Either way you want to proceed, I'm here to help.
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