1982 Turbo Regal w/455 Stage 1 & turbo(?)


Starting a build on my former 454 powered Turbo Sport Coupe. Engine that is going in will be a 1971 455 Stage 1 out of my 1969 GS Cali. I blew up the 4 speed & sold off the conversion parts to get $$$ to do this swap.

So far I have managed to get the engine bolted into the chassis and will be moving forward to bolt in the TH400 next. To start with the project is going to be N/A 455 powered. BUT I do have a turbo set up for an '87 GN that I could do a blow thru intercooled set up. In talking with the guys on V8Buick, my Stage 1 with 5lbs of boost would be in excess of 600 hp. Way too much for a stock rear & stock bottom end.

Anyway, I'll do some pic's of where I'm at now. Thanks to JD for getting me some needed parts.


1971 was the year that Buick dropped from 10.5 to 1 down to 9:1 on the BBB. As for the intercooler.....just because!

Jim :biggrin:
Progress, or lack of... (BBB install, so far)

11/15/2010 I'm installing the BBB into the GN body. Got everything lined up & drilled, but can only get 1 bolt in each motor mount. What's the trick here? The GS has access holes in the frame, so no problems there.

The Regal frame (metric) doesn't have those provisions & I can't get any other bolts started.

My thought is to drop the lower A-Arms (remove shocks & spindles & springs) to get at the mounts threw the spring pockets. This will obviously work as the spring upper mount is about the size of your head.

I didn't have this problem with the BBC frame stands, or with the SBB (V-6) stands.
11/27/2010 Pulled the DR side apart and was able to get into the area and get bolts into the mount (2 hours of FUN). Still need to tear down the pass side & reassemble. Think I'll drop the engine back in befroe I close everything up.

Hope the exaust goes "smoother".
11/29/2010 I have it set all the way back to the firewall, leaving about an 1/8 inch of space for the trans dipstick to clear. Also, how much trimming will need to be done on the "suitcase"? I've got a fiberglass kit to "repair" the new opening. Just wondering how much to remove.

OK, no good job goes unpunished. 12/9/2010

After getting EVERYTHING put back together on the suspension, I went to install the trans x-member tonight and found that the motor shifted when I was drilling in the mounts. Tail of the trans was cocked to the drivers side and no amount of twisting was going to put it into the right position.

SO, everything just was ripped back apart and now I'm too close to existing mounting holes to redrill. Good thing I have a welder. Going to add in some plate on the backsideand weld up the holes. Stronger that way anyhow.

Course now I HAVE TO REDO the same work again.

This time the trans will be mounted in the x-member prior to marking the motor mount.
Old guys......OLD????

Experience my boy.....EXPERIENCE. :p

Yeah, I was pi_sed to say the least. But I was able to notch the box section of the frame on the pass side to allow the x-member to move forward and bolt down the trans into position.

Marked the motor mount (again) so that I can drill in the new holes for the mount. I'll weld up the rest of the holes and add a plate on the back side for strength.

I also pulled out the heater box to see how I'm going to remount that part. The tunnel side of the lower (big) section is beat up, so it should "fit" around the pass side head "ok". I'll mold something in to seal it back up. Front end needs to come back off again, but its freakin' cold with butt deep snow....

Glad I put heat in the shop.

Parts is parts

Well, now we are working on mimicing the front of the 86/87 turbo set-up using a BBB. SO, I;m lookin for parts (always). Jeremy is helping me find some stuff, but still lookin for this:

Belt tensioner w/bracket
Alternator & rear bracket

I'm sure there will be more as this goes forward (intercooler set-up, turbo shield, ect).

We will get you there my brother! I'd love to see pics of the progress if you dont mind posting them! Tensioner is on it's way, coming from California (thanks Squid4life!).

I traded him two intakes for part for you and Bob so you guys are set! And guess what, I'm not tripping on them in the garage anymore! WoooHooo!!!:biggrin:
gsjimmy1 said:
BUT I do have a turbo set up for an '87 GN that I could do a blow thru intercooled set up....

Blow thru? We no need no steenking blow thru.... :biggrin:

Get yourself a newer manifold w/injector bungs, then make your own pleum with whichever throttle body you so choose.... :D

Slow progress

Waiting on parts.

Over the weekend I was able to bolt up the turbo and accessory bracket. Need to make a block off plate for the fuel pump access, and run a fuel line to the carb. It appears that the turbo oil feed line is going to bolt up just fine, only I need a 90* elbow to finish it up.

I have to drill a 455 valve cover to do the return from the turbo, but still need to figure out what size bit to use (anybody?). The turbo side went together very easy as the 231, 350 & 455 heads all accept the stock turbo bracket.

JD is supplyin' must of the needed "bits & pieces" to get the serp system workin' and I already have the PS pump & reservior on hand. I'm planning on building a log style pass side exhaust manifold to plumb into the Exhaust feed side of the turbo. I have a stock crossover from a 231, and am hoping it will bolt up on the DR side manifold.

I do need to find these "do it yourself" rings for welding up exhast pipe. Have the wire feed, but no way to hold everything "square" for welding. (Will be using my chop saw to cut the angles).

I also found that the down pipe is too short by around 3.5" due to the V8 length. Not too big of a deal, but nee to know exactly how big (diameter) a stock pipe is, I believe it's 2.5 inch.

Next problem is going to be the height of the engine at the top of the turbo. I'm guessing around 1 - 1.5 inches, or the deck height of the 455 as compared to a 231. I'm thinking that I coud cut & weld the cross member to gain this needed real estate. My oil pan has about that much clearance under it right now.

Next up is going to be fuel delivery. I have a brand new cam sensor, so I could do the Ford DFI (?) spark system w/ crank driver reluctor wheel for input. That would also cure any burnt wires from my spark plugs hitting a hot downpipe. Thoughts?

Hey Jim! I'm waiting on a few parts to get here in the mail. I wish you were a little closer becuase I'd love to come and help. I'd learn something from you and your fab skills. Sounds like your pretty good at making things work! your project got me thinking and I found a car in Wisconsin that I'm going to do a V8 turbo swap into. I just need to sell my 84 first! Give me a call if you need anything. I'm hoping the parts show up today and I bet Bob will come down here this week so I can send this stuff with him for ya!!

Also, lets see some pics brother!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!:biggrin:
Parts is parts

Hey, I could use the help when I get close to trying to make it run! I'll send out cash this week, but won't be around to p/u the parts from Bob til after the 3rd.

Can't wait to finish the mock up to see just how close this is to being reality! Don't use the EASY button on the V8 swap! Go BIG, like a 494 BBB (stroker kit from Mike @ T/A) and a huge turbo. I'm thinkin that the '84 turns into a pretzel!

Cody on the V8 board was makin' multi-layer Cometec head gaskets for 350 SBB. That would allow some serious HP and the use of 231 brackets to mount everything.

Did some checking

I checked out the deck height on a 455 vs. a 231 (10.57 / 9.5). So I think this is the main reason my turbo is above the hood line. My guess is that by dropping the engine assy down 1.5 inches (by cutting the frame) and another 1" by redrilling the turbo bracket, I will be able to close the hood.

I also found that 2x3 heavy wall tube is wide enough to fab up an exaust manifold. I will need a junk 231 header that I can cut up to get the ends to locate the exhaust inlet/outlets to feed the turbo. Won't be pretty, but will be functionable!
pajo said:
Hey "street lethal" so how does it run.? what is the rest of the combo .?

Pajo, it isn't mine, but here is the information you guys may want;

1970 Buick 462 in an '86 Regal....

Megasquirt ECU, standard HEI ignition, custom fabricated sheetmetal plenum/airbox w/K&N Filter, BBK TPI 58mm throttle body, 30lb injectors, adjustable boost referenced pressure regulator, custom fuel rails, modified T/A SP-1 intake manifold....

As per the owner; "The 1150 58mm BBK throttle body with the AIRBOX creates a substantial increase in low speed, mid range, and top end torque. The car is actually hard to drive "easy" because it takes very little throttle movement to get the car moving from a stop, throttle responce is UNBELIEVABLE!"....

Here is a picture of the custom rails just before he fabricated the TPI setup....

initial mock up

Just getting started on this. Need to lower the engine & turbo system for hood clearance!


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