Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 37

Thread: 3.8 Turbo Buick Celica

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    Toronto, Ontario
    Posts
    28

    3.8 Turbo Buick Celica

    Hey, new guy here. I happened to stumble across this forum, and read the"Silly Celica" post, and was blown away. So...I though I'd sign up and post some stuff about my Toy.
    I have a 1972 Toyota Celica with an 3.8 SFI Turbo Buick Grand National drive train in it.
    I started an album with some random pics of different engines, and stages of builds, but will post pics here as well.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

Name:	IMG_20161014_192510.v02.jpg 
Views:	94 
Size:	262.6 KB 
ID:	15291   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	DSC00615a2.JPG 
Views:	65 
Size:	94.1 KB 
ID:	15290  
    Last edited by Quick72Toy; 02-04-2017 at 04:56 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Lethbridge Alberta
    Posts
    4,475
    Love it!
    Owned too many different modified toyotas to list LOL


  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    Brampton, Ontario
    Posts
    1,469
    Crazy! So many good celicas now! More details and pictures please.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Canada Winkler MB
    Posts
    124
    Very nice. Looking forward to seeing more of your car.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    Toronto, Ontario
    Posts
    28
    Thanks Guys!
    History. I have had this car since around 1976, (yeah, I'm old ;-), and I used to rally drive it hence all the fog lights LOL) and have always had a couple of cars at the same time. I mostly had muscle cars,(69 Nova SS. 71 Cuda, 67 Dodge Coronet,...) and they came and went, but always kept this one.
    I did the basic engine mods to it when I first got it, like a weber side draft carb, cannon manifold, and header, and aftermarket exhaust. I later added an "race" cam, and optical ignition, to replace the old points setup.
    It was a 4 speed when I bought it, so I hunted down a 5 speed. I then managed to find a couple of differentials with different gear ratios 4:36, 3:__ somethings (I cant remember) to match up with the 5 speed.
    After i got bored tuning that, and maxed it out HP wise, I saw an article in a Car Craft magazine about the twin cam 18R-GU that could pump out 500 HP. Went on a vacation trip in California and looked up TRD, (Toyota Racing Development) met the owner, and went for a ride in his "Toy" :-) Wanted one like crazy, and I managed to get my hands on a DOHC motor and put 12:1 pistons, race grind cams, custom built header. Tie that to a 5 spd with a 4.36 rear end and 8500 Rpm redline...It was fun to drive!

    More to come!
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version. 

Name:	old 1977 photo2.jpg 
Views:	30 
Size:	93.4 KB 
ID:	15293   Click image for larger version. 

Name:	18RGU engine0.jpg 
Views:	38 
Size:	48.1 KB 
ID:	15292  

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Campbell River
    Posts
    3,156
    Wow, super cool.
    1JZ 1984 Celica GTS
    1UZ 1981 Corolla sedan
    ? 1972 Celica race car

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Canada Winkler MB
    Posts
    124
    very cool history. Looking forward to the next bit of history on your car. Do you still have the RG motor?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    Toronto, Ontario
    Posts
    28
    I eventually hurt the motor, and was just growing tired of having to always tune it. Constantly having to play with the jets in the dual side draft carbs was a bit of a pain, so I decided to try a different swap. I wanted something that was easy to maintain, and was easy to get parts for so I started looking at North American engines, which I was much more familiar with. First choice was of course was a V8 small block Chev, I had one laying around, and tried to mock it up see how it would fit in the engine bay. I had issues with the oil pan, and stock Toyota steering stuff and K member, as well as it just sat too high, so that would have meant that I would have to cut a hole in the hood and put a hood scoop on. Didn't want to do that, and also the engine weight was around 550+ lbs so there was just too much of an imbalance. Click image for larger version. 

Name:	SB chev.jpg 
Views:	30 
Size:	27.8 KB 
ID:	15294
    I then started looking at V6's and read a bunch of stuff about the 231 Cu in Buick. It was close to 200 lbs less, and was not as tall, so hood clearance would be good. It also being shorter made for an easier fit. I found a dummy block for mock up and started making cardboard templates for motor mounts.
    I still had issues with the K member and steering, but was able to notch the oil pan for clearance, and pulled the stock steering box and all the steering components, and fit in a Toyota Tercell rack and pinion unit. Had to mess with the control arms and reverse the strut rods, welding mounts into the frame just below the firewall.
    After I got the basics sorted out, of how low, and far back I could get it to fit, I fabbed up some motor mounts, and went on to the transmission.
    I had a old 4 speed Saginaw sitting around from the Nova, but it wouldn't bolt up to the Buick block, so I had to find a BOP bellhousing, and clutch flywheel setup from a Chevy Monza. Got that sorted out, and relocated, and redrilled the mounting holes in my stock transmission support to fit the new tranny. I then had to adapt my hydraulic clutch slave to the Chev clutch fork. PIA!!! trying to figure out how to mount it, and get the proper throw to get the clutch to operate properly. Had to mess with a lot of geometry, pivot mount points, to get it right, and had to make numerous beefier slave mounts, to stop it from flexing.
    Eventually got that all sorted out, and had to cut the tunnel open to mount the stick.
    Moved on to the driveshaft. I pulled the stock two piece unit, and chopped down a Buick shaft and welded on a Toyota rear yoke, so it would still fit the stock rear end.
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Carbed V6.jpg 
Views:	31 
Size:	58.7 KB 
ID:	15295

    More to come

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    Toronto, Ontario
    Posts
    28
    Quote Originally Posted by white_cross View Post
    very cool history. Looking forward to the next bit of history on your car. Do you still have the RG motor?
    Thanks. Sorry the 18RG is long gone.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    Toronto, Ontario
    Posts
    28
    Next came sorting out the electrical stuff. Having out figure the ignition and sensor stuff. ( i wanted to keep all my stock gauges, so I had to make some adaptors to get the Toyota sensors to fit on the Buick, like oil pressure, and temperature. )
    I used the stock Toyota alternator for a bit, but then trashed the whole alternator/external voltage regulator setup, and did some rewiring to get the GM alternator to work. Stock Buick starter was too big to fit because of the cross member, so I had to source a smaller Buick starter.
    Cooling was just using the stock Toyota rad, and making some hose adaptors (copper pipe ) to reroute the houses to fit from the engine to the rad.
    Because the engine was set back so far for better weight distribution, I had room to run a flex fan off the motor.
    I used the stock fuel lines with some fittings to hook up to the engine mounted fuel pump.
    Back to the transmission...I had to do some creative tunnel butchering to create a mount for the shifter, and after that was figured out mounted a Hurst rubber boot. I had to loose the console for the time being.
    Exhaust started out with the stock manifolds, and had a muffler shop make up the rest of the exhaust setup.

    Basically ran the engine stock until I figured out all the bugs, and swapped out the Saginaw tranny for a Muncie. (more usable gear ratio's) I then got Rid of the old shifter and installed a Hurst Vertical gate shifter. More tunnel butchering LOL)
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	IMG_20140609_124229.v01.jpg 
Views:	33 
Size:	309.7 KB 
ID:	15296Click image for larger version. 

Name:	IMG_20140609_124308.v01.jpg 
Views:	27 
Size:	283.5 KB 
ID:	15297Click image for larger version. 

Name:	IMG_20140609_124550.v01.jpg 
Views:	31 
Size:	303.2 KB 
ID:	15298Click image for larger version. 

Name:	IMG_20140609_125636.v01.jpg 
Views:	34 
Size:	283.5 KB 
ID:	15299
    Fun to drive for a while and never missed a shift lol, but realized that the 4.36 rear end with a 4 speed was kinda sucking. I then went to a Borg Warner T5. More tunnel butchering and repair...
    Stock shifter was really tall, and had such a long throw, so I went with a shorter short throw B&M shifter. got to use my console again. (modded) Car ran much better now, so I started upping the HP with the usual engine mods. Edlebrock manifold and cam, Messed with the Q Jet carb for a long time, but ended up putting on a Holly 390 CFM unit. built some headers, and messed with the HEI ignition. Click image for larger version. 

Name:	IMG_20140609_125327.v01.jpg 
Views:	29 
Size:	319.8 KB 
ID:	15300

    More to come

  11. #11
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Campbell River
    Posts
    3,156
    This is great. Makes me want to swap out my 1jz for something different. Just because.
    1JZ 1984 Celica GTS
    1UZ 1981 Corolla sedan
    ? 1972 Celica race car

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Kelowna BC
    Posts
    108
    Cool Car!
    When did you start Building this thing?

    Adam
    Josh Danish is a Scammer

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    White Rock B.C.
    Posts
    398
    This is such an awesome swap! Can't wait to read more, and see more pics of it!
    Had a 3.8 V6 in my 1990 Bonneville back in high school, great engines, and very resilient!
    85 Toyota Corolla AE86 GTS Coupe
    98 Toyota 4Runner Limited

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    Toronto, Ontario
    Posts
    28
    Quote Originally Posted by clay72 View Post
    This is great. Makes me want to swap out my 1jz for something different. Just because.
    Ha ha! I get that!

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    Toronto, Ontario
    Posts
    28
    Quote Originally Posted by 77Celica View Post
    Cool Car!
    When did you start Building this thing?

    Adam
    Started messing with it way back in the late 70's. The GN drivetrain has been in it since around 1997.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    Toronto, Ontario
    Posts
    28
    Kinda maxed out that engine HP wise, and wanted to go with something that had some more grunt, so started looking at turbo's. I had toyed with the idea of turbocharging the stock Toyota engine way back, when I saw that there was a kit available, but didn't have the funds back then to do it, so just forgot about it.
    I did like the idea of turbocharging the Buick, and did some more reading, and saw that they produced a factory turbo setup back in 79-83 called a "Hot air" engine. (It was a draw through carb set up. )
    I found a complete setup from an old Riviera, and as I was trying to install it, realized that I was really hating the Tercel rack and pinion setup, and wanted to install a better ratio Ford Mustang/ Pinto unit. This required different mounting, so I had to fabricate a new cross member. This new cross member, gave me better oil pan clearance, So I didn't have to butcher the pan on the new engine, and the new location of the steering rack corrected the bump steer issues I had with the old rack and location. Took some messing around with "U" joint combos, but eventually managed to get the new steering linkage setup. I also made a better motor mount setup.
    I had to do some exhaust mods, and added a fan shroud, some better remote oil filters, and upgraded the ignition with a MSD box, and had to fab a cold air intake setup. Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Early hot air motor.jpg 
Views:	71 
Size:	54.9 KB 
ID:	15302
    Big difference in torque!!! Almost a flat line. First couple of runs scared the crap out of me.
    I started to realize with this almost instant torque, that 1st gear was almost useless, so I picked up another T5 tranny out of a Camaro, and it had better gear ratios, than the older model T5.
    Now I started to have clutch issues. The increase in HP and torque was just overpowering the clutch, so I had to try and find a beefier setup. Found something that fit the bill, but there was a difference in pressure plate/ disk to flywheel clearance, so I had to mess around making balanced shim/blocks, to get the proper clearance. Also had to go with a different clutch fork setup, and had to go through all that geometry/ pivot point crap again! PIA!!! finally got it all sorted out and was pretty happy

    More to come

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Kelowna BC
    Posts
    108
    Hello Again,
    Do you have any photos of your custom Front Subframe and Steering Rack?
    I am currently looking of doing the something similar with my Celica.
    Thanks,
    Adam
    Josh Danish is a Scammer

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    Toronto, Ontario
    Posts
    28
    Quote Originally Posted by 77Celica View Post
    Hello Again,
    Do you have any photos of your custom Front Subframe and Steering Rack?
    I am currently looking of doing the something similar with my Celica.
    Thanks,
    Adam
    Sorry, I don't. I lost a lot of the old pics when one of my hard drives crashed.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    Toronto, Ontario
    Posts
    28
    At this point I realized that the rear end wasn't going to last much longer, so I opted for something bullet proof...Ford 9" with posi Trac Loc unit.
    I found a complete rear end and had a friend chop down the axle tube and axle to match the Toyota width, and re-welded the housing ends back on, re-splined an axle to fit the new width.
    At this time I also wanted to upgrade the brakes, so we went with a rear disk brake setup out of a 300 Nissan ZX.
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Ford 9.jpg 
Views:	24 
Size:	17.9 KB 
ID:	15303
    I also changed the front brakes to a 85 Supra setup, that had bigger brakes and larger rotor. The MA61 Supra has a strut very similar to the stock Celica's, so after a bunch of mods, ( springs, top hat, and steering arms. and camber adjustment) they fit. I also added a set of new shocks
    Name:  Old Supra strut1.jpg
Views: 253
Size:  25.7 KBName:  New Supra brake parts1.jpg
Views: 251
Size:  32.9 KBClick image for larger version. 

Name:	New Supra brakes1.jpg 
Views:	23 
Size:	14.2 KB 
ID:	15306Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Tokico shocks & old.v01.jpg 
Views:	31 
Size:	138.8 KB 
ID:	15307
    Also swapped out the master cylinder to another setup, and removed the stock proportioning valve to give me the proper brake bias.
    Made a new driveshaft to mate the Ford yoke to the GM front yoke.
    Before the rear end swap, I started messing with the 4 link rear end geometry, after I had read an article in a hot rod magazine about anti squat. I had made a simple mod that changed the angle of the upper rear control arms, by welding an extension plate on to the existing brackets, and that allowed me to drill different holes locations for the arms to mount to. This improved traction quite a bit.
    A jig was made to mock up the existing bracketry and everything was cut of the old rear end, and transferred to the new. so the Ford unit just bolted right in.
    Some plumbing had to be done with the brake lines, and stuff altered to get the emergency brakes to work, but all worked out.
    I also changed out the old Bilstein rally shocks, for a set of Tokico adjustable units.

    More to come.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Koriyama, Japan
    Posts
    3,219
    This build makes me very happy. I now really want to see this swap in a RA65 with a fixed headlight conversion.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •