Workshop Manual for Series 1 3800 S/C - Page 2 - GM Forum - Buick, Cadillac, Chev, Olds, GMC & Pontiac chat


1992-1999 Series I L27 (1992-1994 SE,SLE, SSE) & Series II L36 (1995-1999 SE, SSE, SLE) and common problems for the Series I and II L67 (all supercharged models 92-99) Including Olds 88's, Olds LSS's and Buick Lesabres Please use General Chat for non-mechanical issues, and Performance and Brainstorming for improvements.

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Old 10-25-2009, 10:35 PM   #11
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Take pics as you tear it down and build it back up again, and post them up as the work progresses. Your experiences will help other members.
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Old 10-27-2009, 10:15 PM   #12
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Well, you can put a crank kit in it. Has a reman crank and the brgs. If you spun a rod brg (like mine)
you need a resized rod as well. If you spun a main, well its junk, or the block can be line bored. When
I pulled my engine out to take to the rebuilder, I found that I could rock the pistons in their bore with my hand. With 108,000 miles no less.
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Old 11-03-2009, 07:41 PM   #13
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So what'* the probability that it'* just the rod bearings? I'm getting a rod knock (not very loud, but noticable) and completely loosing oil pressure at idle after about 20 mins of driving. I've since stopped driving it in fear I'd do more damage.

And why is it junk if the main bearings are worn, does it really take so much money to fix I'm better off scraping it? Keep in mind that I've spent about $2000 on the engine already, and really really really need the cheapest way to get back on the road. This car has practically bankrupted me (I'm only 18, don't worry, I can recover). I mean I bought this car because it had 120,000 miles and should've been reliable...but apparenly the Series 1 is excluded from the "reliable" catagory.

And why am I getting so many mixed answers, some sources say replacing the bearings is somewhat easy and will fix all my problems, others say the 3800 is a REALLY sensitive engine and they're junk if the bearings go, and others say doing the bearings is possible as long as all the specifications and tolerances match. Can I get a definate answer to the question: Is this car worth it?
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Old 11-04-2009, 08:26 AM   #14
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Dang, what have you spent $2000 on? I got a short block and heads redone just shy of $900.

I spent another $600 on all the other parts and gaskets. My car was worth it because its a rust free

TX car, but I was surprised to find the engine completely worn out. As long as you didnt pay a fortune

for the car and is in good shape, it would be worth the repairs.
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Old 11-04-2009, 09:47 AM   #15
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If you are not driving the car your best bet is to tear it down and see whats going on. Pull all the main and rod caps to confirm what the exact failure is. This will be the only way to really verify what the problem is. You may also want to pull both valve covers, then you can see if there is metal contamination from the lower end. I would probably remove and inspect the oil pump too.
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Old 11-04-2009, 05:31 PM   #16
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Well, lets see here.

In the shop:
New Lower intake manifold gasket
New Belts
New Water pump
New Starter motor
Various Hoses
Some new pulleys
Coolant Flush/Oil Change

What I've done myself
Valve Cover gaskets
Upper intake manifold gasket (aka SC gasket)
Supercharger Coupler
New SC oil
New spark plugs
New air filter
New vacuum lines (fixed my rough idling)

All in all, that added up to about $2000 over the course of about a year.
And yes, for a 92 this car is in very good condition, paint is perfect, interior is perfect, no rust, no tranny issues, no electrical issues (except every once in a while the driver information screen flashes) and the suspension seems a little soft (not much rebound).

I'm getting the exact situation of the bearing diagnosed very soon and I'll post it up.
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Old 12-16-2009, 01:04 AM   #17
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I found a guy who'* doing my bottom end for $650. He says the crankshaft is fine and he'* measuring all the tolerances so I should be getting the car back with all new bearings in a few days.
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Old 12-16-2009, 07:23 AM   #18
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First time I spun a bearing, I used a crank kit. Second time I spun a bearing, I went the cheaper $75 route and replaced the block with one from the junk yard. That was 2 years ago.
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Old 12-17-2009, 01:48 PM   #19
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How effective is a crank kit? I know it'll be an engine out job but if I can get perfect bearing tolerances that would be ideal. Do I just take the whole crank out and replace it with the new one with new bearings and I'm done, perfect oil pressure? I got the car back last night but the mechanic said that he couldn't make the oversized rod bearing he put in place of the one I spun fit properly, so I still get a loss of oil pressure. The worse it gets is 10psi at hot idle. Also he couldn't figure out why there is still a knocking sound even though he replaced all the rod/main bearings. I'm very very very close to giving up on this car and selling for parts if the new bearings don't hold up (especially the oversized rod, which the mechanic acknowledged was still iffy and to get it perfect I would need to machine the crankshaft or get a new one). So I'll have to drive it for a month or so to see how it goes.
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Old 01-11-2010, 07:50 PM   #20
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To conclude this thread, my car is now getting a new crankshaft, oil pump, and rod/main bearings. I'm ordering most of the parts off of rockauto and hiring a parttime mechanic. Knowing this car is in near perfect condition (apart from the bearings of course), I chose to spend the money instead of sell it. I've gotten a next to guarantee that my oil pressure problem will be fixed because the only reason I'm loosing it is one rod bearing has spun (#2) and is loosing pressure for the rest of the system. The only way to correct this is to get the crankshaft refinished and install over-sized bearings so the tolerances will be correct. Wish me luck, I get it back in a few weeks...

Last edited by zecc81; 01-11-2010 at 07:52 PM.
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