1981 3.8L CCC - Team Camaro Tech
Troubleshooting Diagnosing problems done here.

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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old Jul 3rd, 03, 08:04 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Arizona
Posts: 5

I,m a newbie here so bear with me.

My son just bought a 1981 coupe. Vehicle: coupe, 3.8L, THM 350 (I think), A/C, P/S, P/B.

It's tired, but being an AZ car, the body is remarkably good. We're going to rebush the entire suspension next week and then attack the engine, next interior, then paint.

A little background.

1. All the components (emission) appear to be there.

2. This has to pass a pretty liberal emissions test.

3. The "basic" engine is sound. Compression is good. No vacuum leaks, etc.

My questions on the engine are:

1. I do not hear the carb. metering rods "clicking". The engine is running extremely rich. Is it possible to get this carb leaned out without getting into CCC issues? If not, can a non CCC carb be adapted and still "probably" meet emissions?

2. The check engine light works, but is not on-currently. It's sort of hard to believe running the way it is. Is this vehicle supposed to have an O2 sensor?

3. Does the ECM also control timing, or is the HEI "on its own"?

Sorry for the long post.

yellowcam is offline  
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old Jul 3rd, 03, 06:18 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Arizona
Posts: 5

yellowcam is offline  
post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old Jul 3rd, 03, 11:59 PM
Join Date: Jun 2003
Posts: 771

if there's no vacuum advance, i'm sure the advance is conrolled by the computer. you still have to set base timing.
you can always get a non ccc to work.
i dont know if it will pass emissions though.
i would look at other things that can make it run poorly, such as one or more sensors, egr, bad plug wires, etc..
i'm not sure what you mean about hearing the metering rods click. i've never heard mine, but then, i've never listened. i have heard injectors click without trying. that's normal.
and run some techron thru it.
ohcscott is offline  
post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old Jul 4th, 03, 05:47 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Arizona
Posts: 5


Thanks for the reply. After closer inspection, I see that it does have a vacuum advance on the distributor.

We're working now hooking up things that were unplugged (vacuum) and getting the thermactor replumbed.

I did notice now that the check engine light seems to be active. I guess that's a good sign in that the computer has come back to life.
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