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Thread: 1990 Celebrity Wagon finally getting heart transplant

  1. #1

    Default 1990 Celebrity Wagon finally getting heart transplant

    Hey All,

    I've used this site for reference here and there in the past, but I've never had the luxury of posting. Yesterday, my buddy and I finally got around to pulling the 3.1 out of my '90 Celebrity Wagon, to prep it for the 2.8 out of my 1986 sedan. I believe we've got everything pretty well taken care of, but I've got a few questions to anyone familiar. The 4T60E Transaxle... Is there an easier way to get the CV axles free instead of cutting the dust boot on the passenger side? I'd really like to just pull the 2.8, plop it in, toss some wiring around, and get my old wagon back on the road.

    Thanks!



  2. #2
    Senior Member Keiths1976's Avatar
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    The 60-e u need a slide hammer to get the axles free from the transmission since it’s a-body depending on the brakes your car has ja1-ja2 will determining if you need to swap axle hub bearings if it’s a ja2 wagon then really you can use the axles and transmission engine etc and wire it up . A slide hammer is used to get the axles out of the transmission unless your lucky and try to gently pop them out but the casing of the transmission is fragile and u can’t use it as a leverage point or it will crack . Especially the passenger side with the outter covering of the differential with 4 bolts

  3. #3
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    Good to know Keith. Guess I've been lucky with always popping them out with a tire iron.
    1989 Celebrity CL 4 door, 3.1 MPFI, 4 speed auto, summer daily driver
    1989 Cutlass Cruiser wagon, 3.1 MPFI, 4 speed auto, special summer ride
    1996 Cherokee XJ 4 door, 4.0, 5 speed, winter daily driver & towing vehicle
    1991 Tracker 2 door, 1.6, 5 speed, needs work
    Previously several Celebritys, 6000s, & 2 U-vans

  4. #4
    Senior Member Duke George V's Avatar
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    Your Celebrity has a 440T4 (non-electronic), not a 4T60E. And yes, the axles take a bit of yanking to pop out of the trans.

    Also, unless I am misunderstanding you, why are you installing an engine that is a) older than the car its going in to, and b) smaller displacement? There has to be a way to get a hold of a 3.1. They came in many cars GM made for several years: Regal, Grand Prix, Lumina, Cavalier, and so on. You would be taking a huge step backward in power and fuel economy, and I believe the '86 is an iron head version, which probably would not run on the stock Celeb computer/wiring. You would have to swap the ECU and harness. That's a lot of trouble to go to for an objective downgrade.
    Daniel
    Kaiser George IX: 1996 Buick Century Special wagon. 214-SFI. 201k miles. Never gonna give you up, never gonna let you down. Transmission time, again. First documented LX9 swap in an A-body! Click here to read my build thread!
    Goldilocks: 1992 Buick Century Special sedan. 204-MFI. 132k miles. Current DD.
    Susana: 1993 Buick Century Custom wagon. 204-MFI. 121k miles. Garage ornament. Waiting for an LR4.

  5. #5

    Pontiac6ksteawd's Avatar
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    I think his bigger problem is that the 86 2.8 was the older Gen1 2.8 (85-86). Simply put, that engine WILL NOT work in your current adaption, and personally, I wouldnt want it to work. I could be wrong, but I dont think I am.

    The engine would need to come out of a W-Body (Chevy Lumina, Buick Regal, Olds Cutlass Supreme Pontiac Grand Prix), or out of a J-Body (Pontiac Sunbird, Chevy Cavalier), or out of another A-Body (Chevy Celebrity, Olds Cutlass, Buick Century, Pontiac 6000).

    Hell even finding a 3400/3100, and swapping intakes would be a better engine than that 2.8 Gen1.
    Brian - Carpe Diem

    I dont have to love my president, or any god, to love my country!!
    More people have died in the name of "God" than in all wars combined thruout history
    01 Pontiac Aztek GT AWD 125k - 04 GMC Envoy SLT XUV 192k - 05 Buick Rendezvous CXL Sport Plus 61k

  6. #6

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    The 2.8 is all I have access to right now, and I'm in a bit of a time crunch to move across town, so this is my only option. As far as I'm aware everything should be groovy. The 3.1 had 265k on the odometer, while the 2.8 has 143. These cars never made much, I'm just looking to drive. Thanks for the help with the trans guys, I'll do my best here.

  7. #7
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    The '86 engine will swap in, but basically everything under the hood needs swapped with it. The accessories, the harness, ECM, AC lines... It's all different.

    I've ran a lot of miles with gen 1 and gen 2 style 2.8's and honestly, the power and economy are pretty much the same. But I do like the serpentine accessory drive of the gen 2 engine much better.

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