Has anyone here done a 3400 to 3800 swap? [Archive] - GrandAmGT.com Forum

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Daven
05-13-2012, 11:14 PM
I am looking to put some power into my Grand Am. I have a few friends who own a shop to work in and can get me killer deals on my performance parts. I talked to them about doing a built 3500 swap for me, and my one friend suggested that instead we swap in a 3800 and 4t65e from a GTP. If i grab a whole parts car with engine, trans, pcm, etc... What all would i need to do the swap? Change out the mounts for sure, anything else? Any tips/ideas?

I am not interested in being told its too much work/money for a Grand Am, ill decide that for myself. Instead, im hoping someone on here has (or knows someone who has) done something like this and can shed some light on the technicalities of this swap.

Thanks guys.

blckgagt
05-13-2012, 11:17 PM
For the money the 3500 will far outperform the 3800 with the money involved in actually making it work.

[ChaosweaveR]
05-13-2012, 11:28 PM
I thought we were past these topics...

An L67/L32 swap is a gigantic waste of money. Do an LX9 swap, and build it, not only will it be 1000000x easier to swap in, but there's more potential if you decide to boost it. Not a supercharger either, a turbo setup.

Hope you have deep pockets.

Daven
05-13-2012, 11:32 PM
For the money the 3500 will far outperform the 3800 with the money involved in actually making it work.

How so? With the supercharger and all the same mods? Either way im hoping to see numbers of around 400hp. As you can see from my previous post on GAOC, im exploring my options. Luckily, i apearantly know someone whose willing and able to help me get stuff done here and (hopefully) much cheaper.

I'd like to do the 4t65e swap either way... What else needs to be done with a 3800 swap other than mounts? Mounts arent really a problem considering another one of my friends is a proffesional welder.

;1177493']I thought we were past these topics...

An L67/L32 swap is a gigantic waste of money. Do an LX9 swap, and build it, not only will it be 1000000x easier to swap in, but there's more potential if you decide to boost it. Not a supercharger either, a turbo setup.

Hope you have deep pockets.

This is one of those replies i was talking about. Dont tell me its a waste of money. If anything i want to know WHY

blckgagt
05-13-2012, 11:33 PM
Wiring is more of what u need to be worried about.

[ChaosweaveR]
05-13-2012, 11:38 PM
Why? Electrical mainly. Good luck getting that crap tastic boat anchor of an engine to work with the N-body's existing BCM and electrical components. Even the ones crazy enough to do it warn others to not do the swap. Not to mention, you're adding weight, for not much more extra power.

60*V6 > 90*V6

Want an L67 or L32 that badly? Buy a W-body.

HOYS
05-13-2012, 11:49 PM
I'm different than a lot of people here, I like the L67. Its a good engine with lots of potential.

You can put ANY engine in your Grand Am if you wanted to...ANY.

The swap involves a METRIC TON of work, makes the car almost impossible to service, and wastes a TON of money.

If you want an L67, buy a L67 powered vehicle and go from there.

Nick-G
05-13-2012, 11:49 PM
I talked to them about doing a built 3500 swap for me, and my one friend suggested that instead we swap in a 3800 and 4t65e from a GTP.

You had a good start here. Then you let your friend give you a stupid idea.



I am not interested in being told its too much work/money for a Grand Am, ill decide that for myself. Instead, im hoping someone on here has (or knows someone who has) done something like this and can shed some light on the technicalities of this swap.

Thanks guys.

I'm not going to tell you a 3800 swap cost's too much and I also wont tell you it's too hard to do. But I will tell you that a 3400 or a 3500 will be a better option for you.

Either way im hoping to see numbers of around 400hp

If 400hp is your goal than any engine swap at all is a total waist of time. Throw some boost at your 3400 and it will get you to that point quite easily.

Daven
05-14-2012, 12:15 AM
You had a good start here. Then you let your friend give you a stupid idea.




I'm not going to tell you a 3800 swap cost's too much and I also wont tell you it's too hard to do. But I will tell you that a 3400 or a 3500 will be a better option for you.



If 400hp is your goal than any engine swap at all is a total waist of time. Throw some boost at your 3400 and it will get you to that point quite easily.

Thanks for the reply. First, my drivetrain has 212XXXkms on it now and my engine has a noisy rocker arm as it sits. I'd need to rebuild a 3400 anyways, so i may as well grab a 3500. I was thinking a 3800 might be different (and it would be). My buddy seems to think it wouldnt be that hard of a swap to do, but then again he would probably try to throw a v8 in there if i let him lol.

So electrical wise, has anyone here actually done it? Anyone can rant about how bad it is because they heard someone rant before about it. Im looking for someone who has done it that can beam some light on this idea. Odds are, ill probably stay with the 3500, but im exploring this option. And as for turboing it, thats something none of us has dealt with before so i dont really think thats a (smart) option. Maybe a S/C kit, but thats insanely rare to come by a good one.

TruGreenGAGT
05-14-2012, 12:20 AM
I dont know anyone whos done it......but I remember reading there was a guy who did complete the 3800 swap but had over 100 hours of work time just in wiring the engine to run, and he could never figure out how to get the gauges to work after the swap

again thats just wat I remember reading

HOYS
05-14-2012, 12:37 AM
Thanks for the reply. First, my drivetrain has 212XXXkms on it now and my engine has a noisy rocker arm as it sits. I'd need to rebuild a 3400 anyways, so i may as well grab a 3500. I was thinking a 3800 might be different (and it would be). My buddy seems to think it wouldnt be that hard of a swap to do, but then again he would probably try to throw a v8 in there if i let him lol.

So electrical wise, has anyone here actually done it? Anyone can rant about how bad it is because they heard someone rant before about it. Im looking for someone who has done it that can beam some light on this idea. Odds are, ill probably stay with the 3500, but im exploring this option. And as for turboing it, thats something none of us has dealt with before so i dont really think thats a (smart) option. Maybe a S/C kit, but thats insanely rare to come by a good one.

Electrically, I've played around with the idea. What you essentially do is make the car think it is a Grand Prix. Take the entire harness for the engine and body and fit it to the Grand Am. That is the overview from about a hundred feet back from the problem, but you get the idea.

I dont know anyone whos done it......but I remember reading there was a guy who did complete the 3800 swap but had over 100 hours of work time just in wiring the engine to run, and he could never figure out how to get the gauges to work after the swap

again thats just wat I remember reading

The internal communication data is different between the Grand Am and many other GM vehicles. The gauges won't work because of the different data streams.

(I'm using wonky words, but its essentially the issue)

unchained_01
05-14-2012, 03:55 AM
There is a guy from Canada on the aleromod website that has done it Just ask around on that site and he can give you more insight on the project.

blckgagt
05-14-2012, 10:10 AM
I'm not going to get into a debate of whether the 60degree is greater than the 90degree v6. When I meant for the money I was talking about for the money you would need to make the swap possible, it could of been invested in the 3500.

Starglow
05-14-2012, 11:38 AM
(I'm using wonky words, but its essentially the issue)

Wonky words...?

That's definitely a new term to me! lol

AaronGTR
05-14-2012, 06:49 PM
How so? With the supercharger and all the same mods? Either way im hoping to see numbers of around 400hp. As you can see from my previous post on GAOC, im exploring my options. Luckily, i apearantly know someone whose willing and able to help me get stuff done here and (hopefully) much cheaper.

I'd like to do the 4t65e swap either way... What else needs to be done with a 3800 swap other than mounts? Mounts arent really a problem considering another one of my friends is a proffesional welder.



This is one of those replies i was talking about. Dont tell me its a waste of money. If anything i want to know WHY


Ok, I'll tell you why it's a waste of money. The motor is a dinosaur. It's outdated, heavy, bigger, and not easy to swap. Only a couple people have ever done a full 3800 Supercharged/4T65E-HD swap and the results were not impressive. They barely performed as well as a grand am with the stock engine/trans and a straight SC/turbo install.

For both the engine and trans swap you need custom mounts and axles, custom wiring and programming, and hook ups for fuel/coolant/trans fluid etc. And the wiring harness and pin outs for the PCM on the GTP powertrain are different from ours so the wiring harness has be totally modified, and the GTP program also won't run our gauge cluster... so you either have to build a custom gauge cluster or run TWO computers in parallel. By the time you are done paying for all that and getting it to work, plus the cost of the drivetrain, you won't have any money left for mods to the engine. It will be a straight stock swap, and you can get more power than that for less money by modding the stock engine/trans, and it will be lighter and fit/look better.

Honestly, if you go to far with engine mods on this car you will be disappointed. Get a cam/heads/headers and exhaust/intake and call it a day. That will make it a peppy but dependable daily driver. Spend more money on suspension and brakes. These are two areas overlooked and under-modded by most people, and it's an area this car sorely needs work. Plus they tend to last longer and be more reliable than engine mods. After all the years/money/work and mods I've done to my car, the stuff I'm happiest with is my brakes and suspension. That's because since I've installed them, I've barely had to touch them. ;)

HOYS
05-14-2012, 11:21 PM
Ok, I'll tell you why it's a waste of money. The motor is a dinosaur. It's outdated, heavy, bigger, and not easy to swap. Only a couple people have ever done a full 3800 Supercharged/4T65E-HD swap and the results were not impressive. They barely performed as well as a grand am with the stock engine/trans and a straight SC/turbo install.

For both the engine and trans swap you need custom mounts and axles, custom wiring and programming, and hook ups for fuel/coolant/trans fluid etc. And the wiring harness and pin outs for the PCM on the GTP powertrain are different from ours so the wiring harness has be totally modified, and the GTP program also won't run our gauge cluster... so you either have to build a custom gauge cluster or run TWO computers in parallel. By the time you are done paying for all that and getting it to work, plus the cost of the drivetrain, you won't have any money left for mods to the engine. It will be a straight stock swap, and you can get more power than that for less money by modding the stock engine/trans, and it will be lighter and fit/look better.

Honestly, if you go to far with engine mods on this car you will be disappointed. Get a cam/heads/headers and exhaust/intake and call it a day. That will make it a peppy but dependable daily driver. Spend more money on suspension and brakes. These are two areas overlooked and under-modded by most people, and it's an area this car sorely needs work. Plus they tend to last longer and be more reliable than engine mods. After all the years/money/work and mods I've done to my car, the stuff I'm happiest with is my brakes and suspension. That's because since I've installed them, I've barely had to touch them. ;)

The swap is stupid to do in an N-Body, I'll echo that.

Don't look at prices on vendor's websites for parts. Learn how to make your own xxxxx "kit". It can be done for cheaper, it won't be the same exact quality, but you can have the same idea.

If you really...really want to swap it, by all means do it! An L67 GenV intercooled with little to no supporting mods (no cam, no rockers) can get you deep into the 12's with a W-Body, imagine what you can do with it in a lighter car?

I love me some 60*'s but I still have a soft spot for the 3800's. Lots of people around these parts don't like them, that is fine, but I've seen more results from a 3800 making power than a 60*. People pony up more money in the 3800 market, and that makes parts happen. It never really happened for 60*'s like it did for 3800s.

locoman99
05-15-2012, 01:18 AM
It would be easier to just cage the damn thing and make it rwd and throw a sbc in it. Im not playing, it would be easier, more reliable, and faster....lots faster and waaaaaay cooler.

slw240sx
05-15-2012, 11:23 AM
how many 500-600hp 3400 or 3500's have any of you seen? how many 700-800hp ones?

how many 500-600hp 3800s are out there? how many 700-800hp ones? i would venture to say 50 times more then 3400 / 3500 motors.

there is more aftermarket support for them. that means you can make them more powerful for less money. so what if it takes a 100 hours of labor. I see guys every day spend 100s hours on projects that never make it on the road. part of the fun is just building something no one else will waste their time doing.

the easiest way to wire this thing up is called a standalone. **** factory wiring. all you need is ahalltech, AEM, Autronic, FAST, megasquirt(megapainintheass), or equivalent and a flying lead harness. get some gauges and a push button start. you can then have a running tune able FWD monster. Is it worth the money? hell no, but either is dumping 10-20K into turbo charging a grand am with building that stock motor... None of this is worth the money to anyone but the person building the car. If this guy wants to try and do it and he has the means then give it a go, but i suggest you have a daily driver so that you do not rely on this thing for work as you probably will never finish it and if you do it will be constantly breaking down or tweaking it


stop being so closed minded, if the 34/3500 was such a badass motor it would have carried one of these cars into the 11's by now...

AaronGTR
05-15-2012, 06:36 PM
how many 500-600hp 3400 or 3500's have any of you seen? how many 700-800hp ones?

how many 500-600hp 3800s are out there? how many 700-800hp ones? i would venture to say 50 times more then 3400 / 3500 motors.

there is more aftermarket support for them. that means you can make them more powerful for less money. so what if it takes a 100 hours of labor. I see guys every day spend 100s hours on projects that never make it on the road. part of the fun is just building something no one else will waste their time doing.

the easiest way to wire this thing up is called a standalone. **** factory wiring. all you need is ahalltech, AEM, Autronic, FAST, megasquirt(megapainintheass), or equivalent and a flying lead harness. get some gauges and a push button start. you can then have a running tune able FWD monster. Is it worth the money? hell no, but either is dumping 10-20K into turbo charging a grand am with building that stock motor... None of this is worth the money to anyone but the person building the car. If this guy wants to try and do it and he has the means then give it a go, but i suggest you have a daily driver so that you do not rely on this thing for work as you probably will never finish it and if you do it will be constantly breaking down or tweaking it


stop being so closed minded, if the 34/3500 was such a badass motor it would have carried one of these cars into the 11's by now...


Meh... everyone uses those excuses for the 3400 vs 3800 debate. It's pointless. Most of those 700-800hp cars are non-street legal and extremely modified race cars. Many of the parts they use are also custom, or where when they first made them... they were basically testing the limits of the engine and fixing what broke at every step. I was there during the days of that process and the battle between ZZP and Intense. Those cars are not streetable and every day driveable cars running on pump gas.

Only reason no 3400 cars have gotten to those kind of numbers is because no one has spent the time/money on development to get the parts made. They have had no shop support and "race only" cars that they could trailer to the track and break them and no care. It's been mainly owners who can't afford to break their cars repeatedly and/or have to drive them to and from the track, and don't have the hook ups to get tons of custom parts made. All you have to do for evidence is look how long it originally took us to get a cam made or get tuning support.

I prefer not to compare HP and track records. I'd rather look at the design and engineering put into the engine, and compare engines with similar modifications. A stock 3400 with an aftermarket S/C at 7psi will make the same or more WHP than a stock 3800 S/C and do it with almost half a liter less displacement. That in my eyes makes it a better engine.



As for all the stuff about stand alone engine management... yeah, you could do that but it would be even more complicated and expensive than you say. First, most of those companies don't offer an automatic transmission controller, and those that do, it's an expensive extra module that requires more custom wiring and tuning. For those that don't it would necessitate a swap to a manual trans... which would mean more custom parts but less tuning and probably better performance in the long run. Also don't forget the fact that with a stand alone computer you would be starting out with no baseline program because this is not a popular platform and those companies will not have base files like the do for hondas, F-bodies, mustangs, etc. How many people here do you think could program one of these engines well enough to run starting with nothing? I couldn't. Also the stock PCM also communicates with the BCM for the security protocol, and the BCM controls the fuel pump activation. That means if you eliminate the PCM, you also have to custom wire the fuel pump. Since no one has done this before, we don't know what kind of fits the BCM will have when you take the PCM and fuel pump from it, and we need it to run the rest of the systems on the car. Plus once you put in a push button start and fuel pump switch and basically eliminate all the stock security stuff and ignition key... congratulations... you just made it so anyone can steal your car if they want to smash your window. There goes all your hard work/money. :applause:

3800L67GAM
05-15-2012, 07:03 PM
Meh... everyone uses those excuses for the 3400 vs 3800 debate. It's pointless. Most of those 700-800hp cars are non-street legal and extremely modified race cars. Many of the parts they use are also custom, or where when they first made them... they were basically testing the limits of the engine and fixing what broke at every step. I was there during the days of that process and the battle between ZZP and Intense. Those cars are not streetable and every day driveable cars running on pump gas.

Only reason no 3400 cars have gotten to those kind of numbers is because no one has spent the time/money on development to get the parts made. They have had no shop support and "race only" cars that they could trailer to the track and break them and no care. It's been mainly owners who can't afford to break their cars repeatedly and/or have to drive them to and from the track, and don't have the hook ups to get tons of custom parts made. All you have to do for evidence is look how long it originally took us to get a cam made or get tuning support.

I prefer not to compare HP and track records. I'd rather look at the design and engineering put into the engine, and compare engines with similar modifications. A stock 3400 with an aftermarket S/C at 7psi will make the same or more WHP than a stock 3800 S/C and do it with almost half a liter less displacement. That in my eyes makes it a better engine.



As for all the stuff about stand alone engine management... yeah, you could do that but it would be even more complicated and expensive than you say. First, most of those companies don't offer an automatic transmission controller, and those that do, it's an expensive extra module that requires more custom wiring and tuning. For those that don't it would necessitate a swap to a manual trans... which would mean more custom parts but less tuning and probably better performance in the long run. Also don't forget the fact that with a stand alone computer you would be starting out with no baseline program because this is not a popular platform and those companies will not have base files like the do for hondas, F-bodies, mustangs, etc. How many people here do you think could program one of these engines well enough to run starting with nothing? I couldn't. Also the stock PCM also communicates with the BCM for the security protocol, and the BCM controls the fuel pump activation. That means if you eliminate the PCM, you also have to custom wire the fuel pump. Since no one has done this before, we don't know what kind of fits the BCM will have when you take the PCM and fuel pump from it, and we need it to run the rest of the systems on the car. Plus once you put in a push button start and fuel pump switch and basically eliminate all the stock security stuff and ignition key... congratulations... you just made it so anyone can steal your car if they want to smash your window. There goes all your hard work/money. :applause:



All he has to do is win the lottery:angel and have milzy motor sports do it for him good?;crap

HOYS
05-15-2012, 07:04 PM
Sure the 700+ WHP cars are race only cars...duh.

I know at least two people who DD turbo 3800 W-Bodies that put out around 450 to the wheels (on pump gas!)

I don't know anyone that DD's a 60* like this...but like you said, different aftermarket support means different levels of products produced.

blckgagt
05-15-2012, 08:49 PM
Sure the 700+ WHP cars are race only cars...duh.

I know at least two people who DD turbo 3800 W-Bodies that put out around 450 to the wheels (on pump gas!)

I don't know anyone that DD's a 60* like this...but like you said, different aftermarket support means different levels of products produced.

Merely only commenting, but I daily drive mine although I'm not quite pushing that much on pump gas. Maybe when I get my axles in more stable standing. Either way the 3800 have a much higher following/support base no doubt.