Ed's Buick 3.8 Conversion

This forum is to ask and questions or concerns in converting your Le'Sharo over to G.M.

Re: Ed's Buick 3.8 Conversion

Unread postby ejeff » Mon Sep 28, 2015 6:26 pm

Hi Ray, thanks for the for the complement, that was my goal to reduce noise. I have a different type to install on the inside firewall and salvaged fabric to cover the top ledge . I want to line the transaxle doghouse with the same stuff I used on the firewall and finish the engine compartment sides. Replacing the section behind the seats with a softer material and put some thing on the coach floor. I like quite and wanted to keep the road noise to a minimum it bothers my ears.

The race car guy stopped by and solved my coolant fill problem. He said to add a remote tank with a cap that seals and bottom bung the size of my largest heater coolant hose. Make sense to me so that’s what I’m going to do.

The facia got a little banged-up in the shop during the project. You won’t believe how far the sparks from a grinder fly. I showered the facia with sparks then when they got wet rusted. I fixed all of the leaks so after I remove the bumper I’m going reassemble the front end in the correct order. I’m tired of moving ficia around and maybe working and rubbing up against it will pull off the rusted shavings.

I found my starting problem broken wire at the switch and after solder engine started. Misplaced most of the facia bolts and nuts. Still looking for the steering shaft knuckle bolt and steering wheel nut. Ed

New Leaks
IMG_0455.JPG
I actually moved the camper in the garage.
Ed Jeffress
1988
Madrid, Iowa
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Re: Ed's Buick 3.8 Conversion

Unread postby Rick H » Tue Sep 29, 2015 5:28 am

Great job!
You're moving along quite well. Hope to hear more as you get the project closer to completion.
Keep up the good work.
Rick
Rick and Cathy from Sarnia, Ontario, Canada
88 LeSharo 2.2L gas auto

We drive in 'NANAZBUS'.
Our grandchildren love it.
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Re: Ed's Buick 3.8 Conversion

Unread postby Ray Charbonneau » Thu Oct 01, 2015 3:48 pm

Ed,
Looking good, and the camper looks good too. Just laughing around.
I keep forgetting that you up-north guys have to deal with the white stuff and some really cold temps coming up. That garage will come in handy over the next few months.
Meanwhile down here in Central Florida, I'm looking forward to some cooler temps and by cooler I mean highs in the 70's. I tend to start wishing for those cooler temps around August when I've had enough of the 90's.
I have some pretty ambitious plans for my LeSharo this winter, they include an update of the interior, some new front seats, and maybe a start of the sanding of the cab portion as the Florida sun is really starting to fade the front end.
I'll be sure to post pics of work, but don't hold your breath. I've got a million other things to do that the wife wants done. This time of year is when I get motivated.
Keep up the great work!!!
Ray
Ray Charbonneau
Winter Haven, FL
"WinneBuick"
1988 Winnebago LeSharo w/ Buick 3.8
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Re: Ed's Buick 3.8 Conversion

Unread postby jay nesbitt » Wed Oct 07, 2015 12:02 pm

Ed,
I am following your project with great interest!
We were looking for a a small camper (wife and I), being totally turned off by the monstrosities, so were pleased to find the LeSharo. I bought one (88) just east of Dallas and drove it home. It was obvious that a transplant is in order and I have always been a GM guy, so when the Renault gives up the ghost (or earlier) I think my 99 Regal GS is going to provide a transplant engine/transaxle. I think that I need to gear for 2300 to 2500 RPM at 70, however instead of the 2000 it does now.

Best to you! Keep up the good work!!! I'll be watching (and taking notes)!

Jay Nesbitt
Longview, Tx.
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Re: Ed's Buick 3.8 Conversion

Unread postby ejeff » Mon Oct 12, 2015 7:55 pm

thanks Jay, my last post I’m going to list what I liked and what didn’t work. I threw caution to the wind but for converters I would look at a turbo charged 4 transaxle Ford. I went with the crowd 3.8 is an excellent choice and like you said a lower ratio trans rated for 6k lbs might be the best. Going to all of the work I would make it something special.

I wanted to move on to the lights after I had all of the mechanicals done but I keep running into problems mostly caused by me. My plan now is to gather all of the parts for the brakes and wheels then do the brake job. After stopping all of the leaks I’ll move on to the lights, and I thought I created a disaster on the floor when I started.

Working to have all four tires on the ground next week and spent this year’s budget that is the good news. I panicked and purchased new brakes, the front tires didn’t fit, bought a torch, then my expensive steering failure, it all adds up. I have enough to make road worthy and legal plus autumn bike rides are my favorite.

I didn’t have the bottom hydraulic line seated that caused the fluid leak at the radiator. With the tires off haven’t started the engine since then and might still have a coolant leak.Today drove around the block let the radiator fans turn on and no leaks. I have the top cross support on but contemplating moving the radiator forward as possible so the facia is still in the way. Measured for air dam at the radiator edges, if I can find tin I’m going to use it and bend my own.

If possible going with the Rialta tire setup Vanco 195/75R-15 front and Wrangler 215/75R-15 rear, then carry a GM spare and air compressor. I’m having second thoughts on the rims but the deal is done it’s a wait and see. There are few options for small load D tires I wanted off road tires but the axle placement doesn’t allow room for a front pair. Weight and front wheel drive might be a problem on rough steep gravel or sand with Vancos.
IMG_0461.JPG
Beautiful fall afternoon in IA.
Ed Jeffress
1988
Madrid, Iowa
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Re: Ed's Buick 3.8 Conversion

Unread postby ejeff » Wed Nov 25, 2015 8:53 pm

I received the Renault 15" rims and the work Stockton Wheel did looks great I hope they work out. I think I found my headlight problem I missed the Dash Integration Module. I found the connector in my wire box now I have to find a replacement and I'm looking for a pickup MC/booster too. Work outside might be over for the year so I moved my tools back to the shop to finish the galley and build a bed frame out of steel.
Camper sitting on 4 tires.
Two relays stay on that cause a power drain.
I think I can fix the battery isolator.
I didn't realize the camper has a gray water tank I thought there was only a tube.
Removed brake hose brackets.
Removed the LP tank and tubing.
Cleaning a space out for the dash I still need to finish it.
Found a reservoir spot for my off grid shower.
Ed Jeffress
1988
Madrid, Iowa
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Re: Ed's Buick 3.8 Conversion

Unread postby RV4BT » Tue Dec 22, 2015 11:19 am

Ed,
A very remarkable job on your conversion. Much better quality than I obtained in our conversion. It is truly amazing what you can accomplish with a welder. You look to be almost finished!

Ken
Lesharo 4BTRV
Cummins Powered Bliss
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Re: Ed's Buick 3.8 Conversion

Unread postby passingtime2 » Thu May 10, 2018 8:52 am

Just to let the G.M. CONVERTER GROUP know, I put the larger SSEI Bonneville brake rotors on our G.M. conversion all you need is the caliper bracket and the rotor it all bolt right in. (you still use the same caliper, no need to open a brake line) The used the 4 point 2000 Pontiac Grand Prix as a donor on ours, it fits the same brake parts as the Bonneville. I just put 215 / 60 16 tires on ours I found D rated tires on the following link I pasted TIRES EASY ---- https://www.tires-easy.com/tires/?filtering=,price,tireBrand,Achilles,tireStyle,Nokian--C+Line+Cargo,tireStyle,Nokian--C+Line+Van,tireBrand,Nokian ------- The also have other heavy rated tires in 16"
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