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Pontiac LeMans Project

Transmissions, Clutches, torque converters, Gear ratios, Brakes, Pads, etc.

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Re: Pontiac LeMans Project

Postby gse_turbo » Tue Apr 03, 2012 1:09 am

do you have any pics of the issues you're seeing. I have everything here to do the same but I'me not seeing the same issues.

something to consider with the lower spring seat. I don't recall what you are using for springs but I have Lanos H&R sprort springs for mine and it looks like they will work with the Saab setup. it looks like the Saab spring seat is .75" smaller in diameter than the Lemans. The Lanos sport springs and Saab assembly should give a little more clearance for the tire.

that being said. I've had the same 16x7x42offset wheels on my Lemans and my Lanos and I never had a clearance issue. I imagine the same should be true for your setup.
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Re: Pontiac LeMans Project

Postby CarSick » Wed Apr 04, 2012 5:41 am

The distributor on the 88 LeMans was the older style with the [terrible] spade connectors, while the new engine (1992) has the distributor with weather-tight connectors. So tonight I went to pull the new style distributor and replace it with the one off of the older engine, but the rotor points at a different location. That's a head-scratcher. It looks like the cam-side of the distributor has an offset slot that prevents the dist from being set 180 degrees reversed, which is nice. However, it looks like it's one whole cylinder off! Is it me or is something actually wrong here?
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Re: Pontiac LeMans Project

Postby CarSick » Wed Apr 04, 2012 8:17 pm

Looking at the wiring diagrams for a 1988 vs a 1992, the pinouts to the ECM appear to be the same, so I think I might use the new style distributor and see if I can find another GM product that used the same ignition module at the junk yard. There are still no LeMans vehicles at the junk yards around here. I'm guessing that GM used the same style sealed connectors on multiple models.
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Re: Pontiac LeMans Project

Postby CarSick » Mon Apr 16, 2012 8:59 am

Removed AC parts
Front Brakes Done
Front Suspension Done
Engine Wired
    Except rewiring distributor ignition module to use newer dist
      Connectors came from 91 Sunbird (2 pin) and 97 Caviler (4 pin)
    Except VSS which has a different connector on the trans
Fuel Lines connected
Coolant system sound (used an airlift)
Filled trans with SAE 80 gear oil
Crankcase appears to have been filled in 1992 when the engine was packed

It sure does sit high. It looks like a 4WD now with the SAAB springs.
Need to fill Power Steering
Buy 4 more lug nuts
Buy shorter belt (Manual 1.6L crank pulley is smaller in circumference)
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Re: Pontiac LeMans Project

Postby gse_turbo » Mon Apr 16, 2012 7:42 pm

any pics of the suspension/car while it was going together?
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Re: Pontiac LeMans Project

Postby CarSick » Tue Apr 17, 2012 6:03 am

One day, I will have it all up on the web. Probably within the next 3 months. Just busy, I'm sure you know how it is...

If you have any specific pic needs, let me know.

I went ahead and connected the end links even though they are a pinky width from the half-shaft boots. Maybe they were that way stock too.

I had to pretty much throw it together because I got a code enforcement letter from the county with less than a week to comply.

Where I live, it's illegal to work on your own car, for the most part. I'm not sure how enforceable that is in reality, though I'm not in a hurry to find out.
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Re: Pontiac LeMans Project

Postby CarSick » Fri Apr 20, 2012 7:26 am

The wiring is done for the 1992 distributor.

The manual mentions a fuel pump prime connector "top of engine at distributor". Any idea what to look for?

I'd also like to prime the oiling system. On a V8, I'd just run the oil pump through the distributor hole with an electric drill, but on this car, I'm not sure how to prime it.

Does anyone have the pinouts for the Transaxle Position Switch? I need to wire the neutral safety wire to the manual trans and my manuals don't have the pinouts.
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Re: Pontiac LeMans Project

Postby CarSick » Sun May 06, 2012 4:48 am

I shorted the 2.5mm Purple wires from the Transaxle Position Switch together. A todo is to run these wires back to the clutch switch, once I get a clutch switch that will work. The Lanos part isn't a bolt on. But shorting the wires allowed me to start the car. It doesn't idle great. I suspect a vacuum leak someplace is letting in unmetered air, but it hasn't stalled yet.

The VSS sensor ended up being an easy problem to solve. I simply used the old sensor and connector from the automatic transmission.

The Park/Neutral switch on the trans now needs to be wired so the reverse lights work. I suspect that the red with yellow stripe wire in the Transaxle Position Switch should ground through the switch to the Black with White stripe wire that is positioned next to it in the same connector. I do get +12v at the red/yell wire when the ignition is on. The manuals indicate Red/Yellow/Black, so it's not an exact match.

Refilled the PS fluid and tried to bleed the system using the Airlift. I could hear bubbles in the reservoir, so maybe it worked.

Found a coolant leak at the heater core hose to rear of intake. It's minor, so I'll get to it later.

I guess the dist rewire must be OK, because the car started.

There are no brakes (except the e-brake) as I haven't swapped out the rear beam yet. I hope to get to that tomorrow. I tried putting the car in reverse, but I couldn't find it. The shift knob from the LeMans shows reverse up and to the left. But I couldn't find it there. I ended up pushing the car back a bit and then and then trying first gear. I could barely get it to move and then the engine would stall. Strange.

Is the 2000 Lanos trans like this?
1 3 5
| | |
2 4 R

Or like the pattern on the LeMans knob?
R 1 3
| | |
X 2 4

The rod shifter itself is from the 4 spd LeMans, so I suppose that I may need a 5 spd rod shifter??
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Re: Pontiac LeMans Project

Postby benzino » Sun May 06, 2012 6:28 am

lanos is like the lemans but 5 speed obviously
R 1 3 5
|_|_|_|
| |
2 4
~2.0L Lanos~EHPAS~H&R Springs~KYB/GTS Shocks~
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Re: Pontiac LeMans Project

Postby CarSick » Mon May 07, 2012 8:50 am

The rear beam is installed and the SAAB Viking wheels are on the car. It looks good. I couldn't find the SAAB springs for the rear beam, so I reused the LeMans springs. They are too short, so the car looks high in the front and low in the back. Three of my brake line fittings are needing to be recrimped, so I didn't try drive the car. I also hear what sounds like a vacuum leak when the engine is running, so I'll need to track that down. I still need to wire the Park/Neutral switch, but it looks to be A and B on the Transaxle Position Switch. All things considered, today went pretty well.
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Re: Pontiac LeMans Project

Postby CarSick » Tue May 08, 2012 5:33 am

So I read another message here about adjusting the shift rod and looked up the procedure in the manual. After performing the procedure, I can now find first gear! Unfortunately, that requires shifting into what should be reverse. I have to pull up on the reverse lockout lever to get to first. I think that means that I did the procedure incorrectly, or that the 4 speed LeMans rod shifter can't be used with the 5 speed transmission. Perhaps I can change the procedure by not moving the shifter all the way to the left.
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Re: Pontiac LeMans Project

Postby benzino » Wed May 09, 2012 6:44 am

is the shifter cage physically wide enough for the 5 speed pattern? you may need to cut some plastic to account for the extra gear
~2.0L Lanos~EHPAS~H&R Springs~KYB/GTS Shocks~
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Re: Pontiac LeMans Project

Postby gse_turbo » Thu May 10, 2012 4:04 pm

I'm interested in how you got the Saab springs in the front. I figured you would have just used the saab assembly with the LeMans springs. any chance of doing that to get the front of the car to sit back down?
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Re: Pontiac LeMans Project

Postby CarSick » Fri May 11, 2012 5:26 am

The LeMans Springs were smaller and shorter. I'm not sure if I even tried to make them fit, but because the SAAB struts are longer, my thinking was that I would have been running the risk of bottoming the strut. I have located the SAAB rear springs, so I'll try putting them on and that will probably even out the car.
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Re: Pontiac LeMans Project

Postby CarSick » Wed May 16, 2012 6:50 pm

I put the SAAB rear springs in and it sits closer to level. The front is still a bit higher. Having the rear be higher than the front would probably help rotate the car in a turn. I might look at putting the LeMans springs back on the front to lower it a bit. The SAAB rear beam also has a rear anti-roll bar that the LeMans didn't have, so it will probably be too stiff back there. The leaking brake lines are the only thing keeping me from test driving it.

The rear springs are easy to change as the rear brake line on the driver side is the only difficult connection that needs to be disconnected. The SAAB rear beam has a bracket for the passenger side that is easy to disconnect and then leaves enough line that the springs can easily be popped in.
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