'93 Buick Roadmaster engine/trans - swap into Nova? - Chevelle Tech
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post #1 of 25 (permalink) Old Aug 23rd, 19, 1:25 AM Thread Starter
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'93 Buick Roadmaster engine/trans - swap into Nova?

My dad has had this 93 buick roadmaster wagon that runs good. He wants to swap the engine and trans into the nova. Can this be done relatively easy and what all does it take to install the engine with the computer? This wagon was getting about 20/21mpg on the highway and would like to try and keep that. I know I'd have to shorten the driveshaft since it's a 700 trans (I believe, haven't checked numbers). My main concern would be getting the engine hooked up and running with the computer.

Chris
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Last edited by davewho1; Aug 23rd, 19 at 3:50 AM. Reason: clarified title
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post #2 of 25 (permalink) Old Aug 23rd, 19, 6:57 AM
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Re: '93 Buick Roadmaster engine/trans - swap into Nova?

I think that is just a "regular" 350. I don't think 93 was the LT1. I am pretty sure that Painless Wiring and probably others make a kit to do what you want to do pretty easily. That would be a neat swap.

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post #3 of 25 (permalink) Old Aug 23rd, 19, 8:27 AM
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Re: '93 Buick Roadmaster engine/trans - swap into Nova?

Didn't LT1s start out in vettes in 93, then f/b-body in 94?

I actually had to cheat on this one.. Went to autozone.com and looked up a waterpump for a 93 roadmaster. It is a TBI 350, not LT engine, their waterpumps are a little more involved..

You can swap it but might run into some issues. 1993 was the release year for 4L60e transmissions (had a 93 s10 with one). If so, you will have to have the trans hooked up to the computer, then calibrate it if your gears / tire size are different in the nova as the shift points will be off. You will also have to run a higher psi fuel pump for the TBI, it's double what a carb runs, around 13 psi if I remember correctly?

If you wanted to keep the trans the nova has and dump the 350, go for it, top it with a carb and don't look back. The EFI swap is more involved and don't think you'll get the return you're looking for with the TBI setup. It's a lot of work for a little reward.

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post #4 of 25 (permalink) Old Aug 23rd, 19, 8:44 AM Thread Starter
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Re: '93 Buick Roadmaster engine/trans - swap into Nova?

Yes the LT1s started around 93 but not in this. It's just a 350 tbi. So how would you calibrate the computer to the correct gears? I think the nova has 2.73 and the wagon had 3.23 posi. Would I need to have the catalytic conv and smog stuff on it or can I remove that and how would I change settings in the computer if I could?

Chris
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post #5 of 25 (permalink) Old Aug 23rd, 19, 8:49 AM
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Re: '93 Buick Roadmaster engine/trans - swap into Nova?

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Originally Posted by cjensen_68 View Post
Yes the LT1s started around 93 but not in this. It's just a 350 tbi. So how would you calibrate the computer to the correct gears? I think the nova has 2.73 and the wagon had 3.23 posi. Would I need to have the catalytic conv and smog stuff on it or can I remove that and how would I change settings in the computer if I could?

Chris,
I think for it to run properly you would want to keep everything that was on the wagon intact. Not sure about programming for the different gears



You might want to ask in the EFI section in the performance forum.

Bill Koustenis
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post #6 of 25 (permalink) Old Aug 23rd, 19, 9:08 AM
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Re: '93 Buick Roadmaster engine/trans - swap into Nova?

93s have PROMs (Programmable Read Only Memory) for their tunes, so it's not so easy to get an tuner or flash the ECM. You'd have to get a chip custom "burned" for your setup. See link below..

I'm a bit rusty on the 93s and hope someone can come along and correct me, but I "think" the 93s had a weird calibration box that went between the ECM and VSS (Vehicle Speed Sensor) that did the gear/tire size calibration? Ah, quick search brings the memories flooding back. It was called a DRAC module and here's info on how to calibrate it.

VSSB DRAC Calibration | Harris Performance, INC

As far as catalytic converters, no, you do not need to keep it on a 93 setup as there's just 1 o2 sensor. You will need to hook the o2 sensor up to keep the air/fuel ratio correct.

*Jeff*

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post #7 of 25 (permalink) Old Aug 23rd, 19, 10:46 AM
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Re: '93 Buick Roadmaster engine/trans - swap into Nova?

I had a 1994 Caprice with LT1, it was an excellent running car. For what it was, it was quick, great drivability, and great fuel economy (on the highway). It would light up both rears (it had posi, and tow, and hd cooling...) I would recommend that drivetrain all day (I know the optispark has a bad reputation, I had no problems well over 100K miles)
I also test drove a 1993 Caprice ex Cop Car with TBI, ran perfect, but not the same get up and go. It would be an OK swap, great for just drivability, but nothing special.

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post #8 of 25 (permalink) Old Aug 23rd, 19, 1:07 PM
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Re: '93 Buick Roadmaster engine/trans - swap into Nova?

TBI also needs about 16pis fuel pressure, and a fuel return line.
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post #9 of 25 (permalink) Old Aug 23rd, 19, 1:24 PM
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Re: '93 Buick Roadmaster engine/trans - swap into Nova?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pioneer4x4 View Post
I had a 1994 Caprice with LT1, it was an excellent running car. For what it was, it was quick, great drivability, and great fuel economy (on the highway). It would light up both rears (it had posi, and tow, and hd cooling...) I would recommend that drivetrain all day (I know the optispark has a bad reputation, I had no problems well over 100K miles)
I also test drove a 1993 Caprice ex Cop Car with TBI, ran perfect, but not the same get up and go. It would be an OK swap, great for just drivability, but nothing special.
I agree with all of this. I had a 94 and 95 SS, i didnt even buy the 95 until it had 140,000 miles on it, and it was really pretty trouble free. i never had an optispark off except to do the seals once behind it. I would love to have that engine in my Monte Carlo, in fact i have one sitting around, but for what its worth, theres a fair amount of work involved (as far as i am concerned) to go this route. The LT1 has sort of run its course, really for the work involved, there are better options. But i still loved that engine stop light to stop light.

I am not the engine guru by any means, but TBI? seems like a lot of work out of the wagon, and into the Nova for kind of a blah engine, imo.
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post #10 of 25 (permalink) Old Aug 23rd, 19, 2:35 PM
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Re: '93 Buick Roadmaster engine/trans - swap into Nova?

The 1993 B-body cars got a throttle body injected 305 or 350 engine with a non-electronic controlled 4L60 (no "e") transmission.

It can easily be converted over to a carbureted engine. This a "normal" gen 1 small block.

Holley offers easy to use aftermarket fuel injection systems that bolt up to the manifold.

The transmission should have a TV cable.

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post #11 of 25 (permalink) Old Aug 23rd, 19, 2:46 PM
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Re: '93 Buick Roadmaster engine/trans - swap into Nova?

The later LT engines were a whole different animal, "gen 2", it's greatest attribute was the reverse cooling, the heads saw coolant from the radiator first, which I thought was brilliant, it supposedly allowed more compression.

It was plagued by ignition system problems because of where the optical pickup and ignition module were located. The Mitsubishi optical sensor and wheel was actually a great idea and today it's still a more accurate way of tracking the engine's rotating position.

The F-body LT1 engines were known to burn out the rear manifold (China) seal because of where the EGR tube was located.

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post #12 of 25 (permalink) Old Aug 23rd, 19, 3:07 PM
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Re: '93 Buick Roadmaster engine/trans - swap into Nova?

And fwiw, the 3 LT variants were all different in power/torque. Vette was highest in both, then F body for HP and B for torque. Also supposedly the iron B heads flowed better then the aluminum ones. But obviously the al is lighter and easier to port. Another problem was exhaust studs breaking off, I think my LT1 had the rearmost drivers side one break, but it never leaked so, no harm no foul type of thing to me!

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post #13 of 25 (permalink) Old Aug 23rd, 19, 3:09 PM
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Re: '93 Buick Roadmaster engine/trans - swap into Nova?

The LT1 motor in my son's 93 Cadillac went bad so I bought a used LT1 off of craigslist.
The guy I bought it from said it came out of a 93 Buick.

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post #14 of 25 (permalink) Old Aug 23rd, 19, 4:34 PM
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Re: '93 Buick Roadmaster engine/trans - swap into Nova?

Many years ago in a salvage yard I looked at LT1's in old Sheriff cruisers. The man running the yard told me you can spot these by their green coolant hoses. I know the cruisers had green hoses. Not sure if all LT1's had them.
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post #15 of 25 (permalink) Old Aug 23rd, 19, 5:19 PM
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Re: '93 Buick Roadmaster engine/trans - swap into Nova?

The Gen 2 LT1 engine first came in the Corvette in 1992, the Camaro & Firebird in 1993 and B/D-body cars starting in 1994. B-body being Caprice, Impala & Roadmaster and D-body being the Cadillac Fleetwood.

For the first two years of production (1992 & 1993), they were batch fire engines with a non-electronic 4L60 transmission that had a TV cable.

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