Turbo V6 Camaro

Jon Early

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Dec 4, 2014
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Franklin, IN
That was my thought. I wouldn't think that I'd have that problem until I was actually making boost... I was told by my first tuner that the MAF scaling in a Camaro PCM is not as versatile as other cars, but John didn't mention anything about it. Plus, my wideband goes really rich when the popping starts, so I wouldn't think that was it. I'm going to the garage now.
 

kshef

Member
Sep 6, 2003
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CA
I'd look into the tune. I've never had spark blow out problems even with near stock gap up to 24 psi. This is with a little 50 mm turbo though so may not be apples to apples. These motors seem to be less sensitive to plugs than in GNs.

Only time I experienced popping or break up was when the alky would kick in and go super rich. Leaning it out fixed the problem.
 
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Jon Early

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Dec 4, 2014
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Franklin, IN
I lowered my gap down to .035" and put the 8 psi spring in my waste gate. Holy cow does the car scoot now! I still get some popping when I'm at about 8 psi, but I didn't mean to take it that high anyway. Instead of closing the gap again, I'm just going to lower the boost a little. I didn't see any KR and the wide band was still looking rich, so I should be pretty safe anyway.
 

fast86gn

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Sep 28, 2001
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Sounds like it's better then? Still shouldn't be popping at 8lbs of boost though. Talk to John again on the tune, Kyle is right and his Turbo PA is pretty cool.
 

Jon Early

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Dec 4, 2014
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Soooooooo...

I'm gonna hold off a bit before I call John. It turns out that I have a bit of a mechanical issue! While testing some things out I was easing in to the throttle nice and smooth and as soon as I hit a couple psi my rpms just went through the roof. I knew I was on borrowed time with this clutch, but I thought I would have more time than this. Parts should be here the day before I'm supposed to cruise a portion of Power Tour. I'm keeping my fingers crossed that all goes well, and a couple of my big concerns go away.
 

Jon Early

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Dec 4, 2014
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Franklin, IN
It's hard to believe that I had the transmission out of my car three days ago, but I was cruising Power Tour yesterday! Although the car made it home, it is not healthy. Somewhere along the way, it developed an issue. I noticed that the wide band was displaying very rich at cruise (about 8.5:1), and the bank 2 fuel trims were not really moving like they're supposed to. I pulled over, checked each exhaust runner with my temp gun, and saw that cylinder 5 was over 100 degrees cooler than the others. This is kinda odd to me since I thought the odd cylinders were bank 1. Anyway, I was okay with rich and my fluids looked good, so I continued on to the track. From there I started hearing a snapping noise coming from the driver side of the car that resembled the sound of a bad plug wire. I have today off, so I'm going to use this time to do some actual investigation.
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By the way, my friends cars aren't THAT lame. The Lexus is LS1 and T56 swapped, and the Ranger has a factory equipped Mitsubishi turbo diesel and an added intercooler. We're hoping to upgrade the turbo on it pretty soon! Despite the breakage, we all had a great time.
 
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Jon Early

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Dec 4, 2014
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Franklin, IN
Update: I had a brain fart. I got my cylinder numbers mixed up. Cylinder 6 is the cold one which is on bank 2. Here are the results from my compression test yesterday.
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I almost forgot about the snapping noise I kept hearing. I'm thinking that I need to pick up a spark tester and give that wire a work out. Unfortunately, I can only hear the snapping under load, so I can't find any issues just idling in the driveway. I'll keep playing.
 

Jon Early

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Dec 4, 2014
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The numbers are consistent that's good. I would change all of the plug wires.
I'd hate to do that right away since I made them myself only a couple months ago... However, that does remind me that I should check their resistance! Maybe one of my connections wasn't made very tight. Thanks! I know what I'm doing next.
 

Jon Early

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Dec 4, 2014
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Franklin, IN
I rechecked my plug wires, and they all tested less than Taylor's spec of 350 ohms per foot. I figured maybe I should just test drive the car again to see what happens, and I'll set up the scan gauge to read LTFTs for both banks to see if I'm crazy. Either I fixed the problem or it's intermittent because after a 60ish mile drive I did not have a single issue. I was able to go into boost and it ran super smoothly in-town and on the interstate. All the exhaust runners were within about 20 degrees of each other when I pulled back into the driveway. Weird. I'm going to call John at Intense tomorrow and see if there are any small modifications I should consider before taking it to the dyno. I know he wasn't exactly a fan of some of the parts I chose, so maybe he'll have some recommendations on how to get the most bang for my buck.
 

Jon Early

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Dec 4, 2014
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Franklin, IN
Update time

The spark issue is solved. My 3-6 coil went bad on me, so I replaced it with a spare I had laying around. I have a feeling that this is going to be a common issue with my car because of my intense under hood temps. Coils don't like that, and mine sit right above the driver side exhaust manifold. I might look into relocating them at some point, but for now I have bigger problems to tackle.

I made a small oopsie. While I was fooling around trying to diagnose the spark issue, I put the oil cap back on. I was running a valve cover breather before, but I was tired of the oily mess it was making. Well, I forgot to put the breather back on and popped the dipstick out. So much for a cleaner engine bay! I'm going to have to block off the PCV and figure out a good catch can system.

I still have no idea what's going on with my Bank 2 o2 sensor. For some reason when displaying mV for that sensor it either doesn't display anything or it sits solid on one number for the entire trip. Oddly there are no DTCs. To try narrowing the problem down, I swapped the sensors from one bank to the other. This resulted in the same results on the gauge, so the sensors themselves must be okay. I might have to back probe the ECM and check for the actual voltage at the connector. If the volt meter reading agrees I'll check my wires. If it looks like a normal o2 sensor voltage then I will have to consider finding a new ECM.... or just screw it all and go standalone.

The car is sitting again due to other issues....
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Ironically, after this little episode the clutch feels better than it ever has! The seals must have gotten rolled inside the master cylinder and then rolled back into place. I'm not risking it though. I have a new master cylinder on the way. The clutch job I did originally was done as quickly as I possibly could with as many parts as I could come up with before Power Tour. However, this did not include a rear main seal... guess what started leaking! Time to pull that T5 out once again and do this job right. Since I'm there and have time to wait for parts now, I'm going to replace the HTOB and pilot bushing as well.
 

Jon Early

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Dec 4, 2014
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Franklin, IN
Been there done that... it seems everytime I rush something to get it done it comes back to bite me on my ass. Ouch.
It's all good. It was worth it to get the car back on the road and experience Power Tour. Normally, I would not have cut corners like that, but desperate times call for desperate measures!
 

Jon Early

Member
Dec 4, 2014
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Franklin, IN
I haven't been here in here much, but I've still been slowly plugging away. Life has been getting in the way, and the Camaro is at the bottom of the list of priority. Since this car is so incredibly rusty I decided to turn my 20 minute rear sway bar end link job into a couple days. There are pedestals that bolt to the frame in order for the links to have something to mount to. They collect water and mud like crazy, so naturally they were in very poor shape. I cleaned them up as best as I could with the wire wheel, welded reinforcement washers to the bottom, repainted with rust inhibitor, and now they should be stronger than they ever were. The car handles a lot better too!

After more hard thinking, I figured out that narrow band problem as well. I knew that the car couldn't be running as well as it was without any signal voltage from the O2 sensor, so I turned to the Aeroforce user manual. Apparently some things can't be taken too literally. GM likes to name their sensors funny, so "Sensor 1 Bank 2" is actually the post-cat sensor which I deleted. "Sensor 1 Bank 3" is actually my Bank 2 sensor.... Thanks for that confusion, GM. (n)

Anyway, the car runs flawlessly, and I'm super happy with it. I recently sold my deadbeat '88 Chevy C1500, so hopefully I'll have more time to work on the Camaro as I shop for a nice new truck. Next on the list include:

-Block PCV so that I stop boosting the crankcase!!
-Catch can
-Rear main seal, pilot bushing, clutch hydraulics
-Replace the rest of the brake lines
-Finish and install coolant reservoir
-Battery cut off switch?

Maybe then I'll be able to get a dyno tune and some track time without making a mess.
 

Jon Early

Member
Dec 4, 2014
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Franklin, IN
I removed the PCV and JB welded it shut. After trying to force it shut with compressed air, it was pretty wild to see how much these will leak under boost. The first long drive was a success! I no longer have obnoxious clouds coming from the breather or rear main seal, but my tune is off now. It sits at around 7:1 for a minute on start up before finally adjusting. I figured this would happen, but it's for the best. I'll keep an eye on my breather and seals. Hopefully I don't have to do the rear main after all! Fingers crossed.
PCV plug 1.jpg
PCV plug 2.jpg
 

Jon Early

Member
Dec 4, 2014
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23
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Franklin, IN
Eventually I will get a proper catch can and a new PCV. Until then, this and the valve cover breather should slow my smoking problem down.

I don't really have a good place to put a catch can unless I get an HVAC box delete plate. Those are a big pain to install on these cars especially since I want to maintain heat, so it's going to be a while before I finish this.