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Is this a good setup for my V6?

This is a discussion on Is this a good setup for my V6? within the V6 forums, part of the Vehicle Specific category; Right now my '97 has a custom catback and intake on it, but would this make a good setup? -Pacesetter ...

  1. #1
    Member Dave-TransAm's Avatar
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    Is this a good setup for my V6?

    Right now my '97 has a custom catback and intake on it, but would this make a good setup?
    -Pacesetter mid length headers
    -Pypes x-pipe with 2 cutouts
    -chopping up the custom catback to fit with the x-pipe
    -no cat or muffler.

    Let me know what you guys think and give me suggestions on what you think would sound good and perform well. Thanks!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave-TransAm View Post
    Right now my '97 has a custom catback and intake on it, but would this make a good setup?
    -Pacesetter mid length headers
    -Pypes x-pipe with 2 cutouts
    -chopping up the custom catback to fit with the x-pipe
    -no cat or muffler.

    Let me know what you guys think and give me suggestions on what you think would sound good and perform well. Thanks!
    Have you ever heard a 3800-II N/A without a muffler on a stock cam?

    IMHO not the most pleasant sound.. They have a heavy drone that can not be overcome by rpms because by the time you crank it up to where is starts sounding good it fell on it's face 2000 rpm ago.

    It's not the engines fault though, definetly a good engine, it's the stock heads/cam that kills it..

    A nice set of worked stock heads, or an after market set with better than stock flow, and a lumpy cam and you'll have no trouble getting into L67 numbers without a blower.

    I mean heck,, you'll need a tune to make full use of the headers/exhaust, and to turn off the cat code it will throw anyways.

    IMHO headers are always a good idea, espeacially since the 3800 could definetly use a little more top end.

    Just my .02
    Last edited by Smittro; 01-24-2012 at 05:38 AM.
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    Member Dave-TransAm's Avatar
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    I'll take that .02 and put it in the bank, thanks for the tips! Ive got about $900 to work with so we'll see what I can accomplish with that. It will be a couple months but I'll keep you guys posted.

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    That's enough cash for a real good start.

    The Buick guys have made sure over the years that the after market is pretty strong for the 3800's.

    You can get into a new set of heads for $300-600.

    A set of 1:6 rockers for less than that iirc and you'll be well on your way..

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    Member flybird's Avatar
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    When you put your setup on, post up a vid for us to hear

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    Senior Member TLS_Addict's Avatar
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    I think he is an LT1 V8 and not a V6......

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    Member Dave-TransAm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TLS_Addict View Post
    I think he is an LT1 V8 and not a V6......
    It's a V6

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    If you are getting headers, possibly go true dual. Ive heard some true duals on 3800, and it sounds pretty damm mean.

    Goodluck on the setup though.

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    I like turtles GTP231's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smittro View Post
    That's enough cash for a real good start.

    The Buick guys have made sure over the years that the after market is pretty strong for the 3800's.

    You can get into a new set of heads for $300-600.

    A set of 1:6 rockers for less than that iirc and you'll be well on your way..
    Bah go 1:8 rockers or keep the stockers which are 1.6 anyway and get a bump stick. Definitely get headers though since the pre 2000 manifolds are ungodly restrictive

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    Quote Originally Posted by GTP231 View Post
    Bah go 1:8 rockers or keep the stockers which are 1.6 anyway and get a bump stick. Definitely get headers though since the pre 2000 manifolds are ungodly restrictive
    Are you sure?

    The L36 stockers are kinda a weak link in the valve train, the L36 also does'nt have compression reducing pistons as the L67 does.

    I have'nt done the math but I am not sure 1:8's will work with L36 pistons due to having less clearance.

    Also many folks upgrade to 1:6 rockers from the L36 stockers..

    I'd have to pull tha manuals to see the actual L36 stock rocker ratios, I'll have a look when I get to the shop later.

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    Senior Member TLS_Addict's Avatar
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    I thought you had an LT1 though? What happened to it?

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    Member Dave-TransAm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TLS_Addict View Post
    I thought you had an LT1 though? What happened to it?
    Used to have a 1994 Trans Am but I blew the tranny twice so I just cut my losses and sold it. Got $1500 for it and used some extra cash I had from work and bought a 1997 Firebird.

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    Results from 2 seperate manuals

    1996-1999 F-body L36 3800 series 2 N/A rocker ratio is ~1.315

    On 96 -99' 3800 a 1.6 is about as far, (MAX) as I would go because of the greater spring length than the pre 1999, 3800 F-body..

    1999-2000, (or one model year) they were 1.72 this is where the 1:8 ratios come in..

    There was also a change in valve spring height in 2000, with the springs being changed from 1.981 to 1.960 inches.

    2001 to 2002 F body 3800-II saw anything from 1.690 to 1.750. (sloppy final builds of an aging/dieing platform) but still a stout design for sure.

    With that said,, it's safe to say a set of 1:8 rockers on the N/A 3800 would see slight gains over stock in those years.

    On a 1996-98 3800-2,, I would be worried about running a 1:8 ratio rocker because as stated above there was a spring change which there also shows a valve length difference..

    Personally/Seperately,

    It was'nt until the return of the 60*v6 or "X" type (LQ1 reborn ) that Camaro v6 gained a more precise and far more powerful v6 engine..

    That's where I would head the car personally.. I can't for the life of me figure out why the LQ1 was'nt even an option for the v6 F-body.

    LQ1 was cranking 3800 series 1 sc, numbers N/A with smaller displacement and a wider power curve..

    Everyone says, the 3800 has more torque and they are right...~5 ft-lbs more..lol

    Only thing I could come up with was if for nothing else maintanance reasons..

    Taking care of a 3800 is night and day different than taking care of an LQ1..

    Sorry I ramble sometimes..
    Last edited by Smittro; 02-03-2012 at 03:43 PM.

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    I like turtles GTP231's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smittro View Post
    1996-1999 F-body L36 3800 series 2 N/A rocker ratio is ~1.315

    On 96 -99' 3800 a 1.6 is about as far, (MAX) as I would go because of the greater spring length than the pre 1999, 3800 F-body..

    1999-2000, (or one model year) they were 1.72 this is where the 1:8 ratios come in..

    There was also a change in valve spring height in 2000, with the springs being changed from 1.981 to 1.960 inches.

    2001 to 2002 F body 3800-II saw anything from 1.690 to 1.750. (sloppy final builds of an aging/dieing platform) but still a stout design for sure.

    With that said,, it's safe to say a set of 1:8 rockers on the N/A 3800 would see slight gains over stock in those years.

    On a 1996-98 3800-2,, I would be worried about running a 1:8 ratio rocker because as stated above there was a spring change which there also shows a valve length difference..

    Personally/Seperately,

    It was'nt until the return of the 60*v6 or "X" type (LQ1 reborn ) that Camaro v6 gained a more precise and far more powerful v6 engine..

    That's where I would head the car personally.. I can't for the life of me figure out why the LQ1 was'nt even an option for the v6 F-body.

    LQ1 was cranking 3800 series 1 sc, numbers N/A with smaller displacement and a wider power curve..

    Everyone says, the 3800 has more torque and they are right...~5 ft-lbs more..lol

    Only thing I could come up with was if for nothing else maintanance reasons..

    Taking care of a 3800 is night and day different than taking care of an LQ1..

    Sorry I ramble sometimes..
    They looked the same in the few F Body ones I've torn into as the L67 ones. I never put too much faith in what one manual says versus another
    The 3800s aren't as prone to intake gasket leaks ;-)

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    Quote Originally Posted by GTP231 View Post
    They looked the same in the few F Body ones I've torn into as the L67 ones. I never put too much faith in what one manual says versus another
    The 3800s aren't as prone to intake gasket leaks ;-)
    I have to say the couple I've been into did'nt look any different to me either, but I did'nt think about measuring them either cause I was'nt messing with the valve train.

    I also agree about the manuals, sometimes they are off, or leave out info..

    The plastic intake 3800's are all prone to leaks, and many F-body 3800's have had the leak too includeing me..

    Both the LQ1 and the 3800 use the same type and material LM gaskets.

    If anything the problem is in the factory gasket materials and Dexcool imho..
    Last edited by Smittro; 02-04-2012 at 07:35 AM.

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    Member flybird's Avatar
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    Blew it twice? Damm that really sucks. Shit i blew my engine twice. 1st time cracked the long block, 2nd time spund a bearing. If the 3rd time ever pulls around its not longer worth it.

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    I like turtles GTP231's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Smittro View Post
    I have to say the couple I've been into did'nt look any different to me either, but I did'nt think about measuring them either cause I was'nt messing with the valve train.

    I also agree about the manuals, sometimes they are off, or leave out info..

    The plastic intake 3800's are all prone to leaks, and many F-body 3800's have had the leak too includeing me..

    Both the LQ1 and the 3800 use the same type and material LM gaskets.

    If anything the problem is in the factory gasket materials and Dexcool imho..
    I agree with the dex cool. Onlything worse with DexSludge are the Vortecs. Though the early plastic intake 3800s didn't puke the gaskets with green coolant while its 60* bretheren still were :P

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