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My '95 Caprice Classic STW, "Sally"
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Thread: My '95 Caprice Classic STW, "Sally"

  1. #1
    Lost and driftin' Arquemann's Avatar
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    Default My '95 Caprice Classic STW, "Sally"

    This is Sally, aka "Fat Sally". She's got a substantial posterior.





    It's a 1995 Caprice Classic wagon, with the 5.7l LT1. Manual AC, cruise and power everything, no self-leveling, twilight sentinel or other too fancy stuff to break. What makes it kinda funny is the factory 2.56 rear ratio. It gets 25+ mpg all day.
    She's been around the block a few times (346k KMs), a bit rough around the edges. Interior needs a proper cleaning, outside will stay as is.
    It functions as is, but the 4L60e needs some attention and the AC leaks out in two weeks, plus a dozen small things to fix. Such as interior lights, third brake light, blinkers not canceling and all sorts of minor stuff.

    Main party pooper is the trans, which has a couple problems, hard shifts and a slipping lockup converter... Just 4L60 things?
    Obviously this is far from the correct place to post about GM problems, but I can't be arsed to join any specific GM forum for troubleshooting this stuff.
    -Lockup converter slips slightly on hills, but not on flat-ish ground. This could either be a worn converter clutch, or the stuff that controls it (which seems to be pretty common). I'd want to try out one of these things before spending a lot more on a new converter: https://www.rockauto.com/en/moreinfo...000853&jsn=565
    -All upshifts are pretty hard and get harder depending on throttle position, on very low throttle the upshifts are tolerable. The shifts are just hard, not fast(er than stock), and feel kinda late, especially more throttle input. Someone has supposedly done something to the trans to "make it shift firmer for longevity", I have no clue what, programming, shift kit or some redneck engineering... I heard the TCC valve might cause hard shifts aswell.


    This is my daily driver for now, but this is basically an experiment for me. "Is an american V8 boat fun/cool enough as a daily driver to offset the maintenance difficulty and increase in fuel consumption?" "Do you want to be depressed while driving or while refueling?" A compromise has to be made in "the fun-to-TCO axis". This leans heavily towards the fun factor side. I might own this for a year or maybe more, dunno yet at all. I was initially looking for an aero LTC, but those are scarce in the condition I'd want to buy one in. With the ever-rising fuel prices, this experiment might end short. Fuel consumption-wise I'm saving approx. 60+ euros a WEEK, driving this versus my MGM. And I'm still using about 25Ä per day in fuel.

    EDIT: Dunno what happened with the large photos, if they're not visible for others. Attached small pics aswell.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails 20220705_180238.jpg   20220705_180307.jpg   20220705_180353.jpg  
    Last edited by Arquemann; 07-05-2022 at 03:36 PM.
    1985 Mercury Grand Marquis LS, "Maisa"
    1995 Chevrolet Caprice Classic STW, "Sally"

  2. #2

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    No photos are showing for me at this very moment

  3. #3

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    Photos are showing now. The Caprice looks good

  4. #4
    Carthago delenda est Lutrova's Avatar
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    My grandparents had a '96 Roadmaster Estate, which was later passed down to my brother and I before being totaled while parked by some local high school student in 2018. I really came to love that thing, and while yours isn't quite as fancy, I suspect it still has most of the same charm as a Buick.

    Visibility in these things is great. I remember it felt a lot wider than my Town Car, but parking was never a problem. And the people- and furniture-moving capacity is unrivaled. We once moved a piano in back and still had three across in the front. The engine had plenty of power, though with your rear end it may feel a little more anemic.

    What a great car. Congratulations

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    The Brown Blob 87gtVIC's Avatar
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    Nice. Enjoy.
    ~David~

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    Quote Originally Posted by ootdega View Post
    My life is a long series of "nevermind" and "I guess not."
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    But, that's just coming from me, this site's biggest pessimist. Best of luck

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    Wagon Addicted Tiggie's Avatar
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    I like this experiment. Hope it works well for you.

    My only experience with the 4L60E is with a 1999 S10. The TC wouldn't lock up once it was warm. I think it was a P1810 code I was getting. The TransGo kit did NOT fix it. A new valve body from ACDelco did fix it.
    1990 Country Squire - weekend cruiser, next project
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    I'm an air-conditioned gypsy gadget73's Avatar
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    If you can delete the pulse-modulated converter lockup that may help too. Won't fix any damage that has occurred but it will help keep it from getting worse. Stock they slip in and out of lockup, but modified it engages like an extra gear. Common thing on HD 4L60E overhauls. My old S10 was done that way and there was zero question about whether it was locked or not.

    its a weird transmission. The one in the S10 blew up backing out of my driveway. Something in the planetary set cracked and that was it. It ran for a while longer eating itself until it got so much metal in the filter that it wouldn't go anymore. The only hard part that was still usable was the case. The one in my Silverado was used harder than the S10 ever was behind a V8, and completely ignored for 140k miles. it works just fine. I did the first fluid change when I got it, and it was pretty nasty.

    unrelated word of caution, if this has the press-in seal, don't try and remove it. I did and sliced the thing, then was forced to get it out by using a chisel and a hammer to peen it in enough to be able to extract it, then I had to make a seal driver tool to put a new one in because I destroyed one with a socket trying to do it the lazy way. Pull the filter out and give the seal an inspect. if it looks intact and the rubber isn't ripped, just put some fluid on the new filter and pop it back in.

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    Quote Originally Posted by phayzer5 View Post
    I drive a Lincoln. I can't be bothered to shift like the peasants and rabble rousers

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    Lost and driftin' Arquemann's Avatar
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    @Lutrova
    I like the Roadhamsters a lot, but I didn't want leather seats, they're cold in the winter and hot and sticky in the summer.
    Nevertheless, the ride is soft and comfy, goes into turns better than my MGM, but I'd put that to the lack of rear sway bar.
    It's a huge car, but the dimensions feel bigger from the inside. Surprisingly nimble tbh.

    @gadget73
    Yes I believe the kit is supposed to make the lockup to a ON/OFF, which won't bother me if the jerking stops. It seems to be an oversized part to reduce leaks aswell. I'll take the chance with a $30 part that I can install myself, because a new valve body or torque converter will cost several hundreds to buy and get installed. I'm not dropping a trans on our driveway.
    The oil in the trans is like 1Ĺ years old / 15k KMs and looks and smells fine. Any clutch material from a wearing TCC probably wont show up on the dipstick.
    Which seal are you referring to?
    1985 Mercury Grand Marquis LS, "Maisa"
    1995 Chevrolet Caprice Classic STW, "Sally"

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    GMN Regular DerekTheGreat's Avatar
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    I love Roadmasters, they can be had with velour seats and a full compliment of gages. That whole platform seems to be well designed.

    People poop all over the 4L60E, but the one I've got experience with (2002 Tahoe w/ a 5.3 & 260k miles) shifts and performs better than any other four speed auto I've ever driven. It's all stock, never been apart. Just frequent oil & filter maintenance.
    1985 LTD Crown Victoria - SOLD
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  10. #10
    I'm an air-conditioned gypsy gadget73's Avatar
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    The seal for the transmission filter. There was an early type thats basically just an O ring, and a later type that presses up into the case with a rubber lip. The O ring kind you just fish out, no problem. The press-in kind are reusable with no fuss unless you're dumb like me and mess it up, then its a giant pain in the ass to get out and replace.

    I think later on they fixed some issues that made them more durable. If you get one thats right, its really not a bad transmission. The stock shift calibration is a bit on the soft side but its not terribly obnoxious and the scheduling is really not bad either. GM did a pretty decent job with that part, step on the gas and it shifts where you think it should. They can be made to shift hard, the 1-2 in my S10 was hard to the point where it would break the tire loose any time I gave it better than half throttle. That was sort of an accident and he offered to change it but honestly i thought it was kind of fun so I left it alone. Was still doing it 16 years later when I sold the truck.

    86 Lincoln Town Car (Galactica).
    5.0 HO, CompCams XE258,Scorpion 1.72 roller rockers, 3.55 K code rear, tow package, BHPerformance ported E7 heads, Tmoss Explorer intake, 65mm throttle body, Hedman 1 5/8" headers, 2.5" dual exhaust, ASP underdrive pulley

    91 Lincoln Mark VII LSC SE, triple black (Timewarp) - poly front bushings, KYB struts and shocks, Holley SystemMax1 lower intake, SilverFox AOD valve body,

    1984 Lincoln Continental TurboDiesel - rolls coal

    Quote Originally Posted by phayzer5 View Post
    I drive a Lincoln. I can't be bothered to shift like the peasants and rabble rousers

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    GMN Regular DerekTheGreat's Avatar
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    I think you're right on with the "later is better" part. This one shifts soft but also right on when you think it should and when you need it to as you described. The people over on the GMT400 just love to smear scat all over that trans though. "Trash it and go for the 4L80E" is what you'll see in nearly all the threads that so much as even mention a 4L60E. Just as they'll tell you the GM 10bolt rear end suck and is total weak sauce. Yet in my four years of semi searching for a functional 14 bolt, all I've never lost the 260k mile 10 bolt behind my truck, nor have I found a 14 bolt in a treasure yard that wasn't locked up or already dicked with. Plenty of unopened, yet fully functional 10 bolts though...
    1985 LTD Crown Victoria - SOLD
    1988 Town Car Signature - Current Party Barge

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    Lost and driftin' Arquemann's Avatar
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    And the plot thickens, kinda? Or I'm just the best at buying the wrong vehicles...
    Went to get the fault codes read at a specialized shop, no dice. Mechanic said to check if the OBD1 port has ground and power. Which I did and it does indeed have power and a ground where it should.
    What gives? Can't get anything with a paperclip, and a tech can't get anything with their obd1 scanner...
    From my reading, my car might be one of those GM's brainfarts, "OBD1,5". And try and get anything out of that mess in Finland, when those compatible scanner are scarce in the US.
    1985 Mercury Grand Marquis LS, "Maisa"
    1995 Chevrolet Caprice Classic STW, "Sally"

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    GMN Regular DerekTheGreat's Avatar
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    It's a '95, it should be OBDII as GM was 1 year ahead with some of their stuff.
    1985 LTD Crown Victoria - SOLD
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    Lost and driftin' Arquemann's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DerekTheGreat View Post
    It's a '95, it should be OBDII as GM was 1 year ahead with some of their stuff.
    I wish it was, but it's got the 12 pin diagnostic port and underhood sticker says OBD1 certified.
    I think mine might be the most infernal variation of "OBD1,5", which functions with OBD2 -type diagnostics, but still uses the OBD1 12pin port. Which would be why the shop's OBD1 scanner nor the paperclip worked.
    1985 Mercury Grand Marquis LS, "Maisa"
    1995 Chevrolet Caprice Classic STW, "Sally"

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    Itís been a very long time since Iíve seen anyone work on those GM OBD 1.5 systems but finding a used Snapon MT2500 ďRed BrickĒ with the appropriate cartridge and cable would probably be your best bet.

    Actron also made a tool that worked on those systems. Some Googling indicates itís a CP9145 with a CP9127 cable.


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    Lost and driftin' Arquemann's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by matth825 View Post
    It’s been a very long time since I’ve seen anyone work on those GM OBD 1.5 systems but finding a used Snapon MT2500 “Red Brick” with the appropriate cartridge and cable would probably be your best bet.

    Actron also made a tool that worked on those systems. Some Googling indicates it’s a CP9145 with a CP9127 cable.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Yay, expensive as fuck or not in stock. Fuck this, I'm not spending hundreds just to know if I have trouble codes, engine lights not on.
    If I want someone to program my PCM, does their normal obd1 stuff still work? Mainly I just want to know if the transmission tune is factory or not.
    1985 Mercury Grand Marquis LS, "Maisa"
    1995 Chevrolet Caprice Classic STW, "Sally"

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    all the CFI are belong to me
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arquemann View Post
    Yay, expensive as fuck or not in stock. Fuck this, I'm not spending hundreds just to know if I have trouble codes, engine lights not on.
    If I want someone to program my PCM, does their normal obd1 stuff still work? Mainly I just want to know if the transmission tune is factory or not.
    Not wanting to leverage your thread as an ad, but I will note that this: http://www.grandmarq.net/vb/showthre...OBD1-Scan-Tool
    has been tested on my friend's 95 dustbuster van, which is GM "OBD 1.5" and it worked - but in order to do that, we needed to use a newer cartridge than the one I am including with it. I think Pathfinder '96 is the one that was not too new for the tool, but did cover the vehicle.

    So this tells us that if you want a capable tool, I'm selling one, but you'd need to get the more proper cartridge to use with it (they're available out there in the world). Certainly no pressure nor rush, but if you feel like you want it, shoot me a message.

    As for the thread and vehicle overall: these B-bodies are getting hard to find over here, so I can only imagine they aren't much more common over there. Looks decently clean. And yes, big butt.

    Wouldn't mind seeing more of how the trailer hitch works - how the ball mount/drawbar attaches and how the body of the frame is shaped and mounts to the car. Might seem stupid, but Euro and North American trailer hitches are rather different.
    Last edited by kishy; 07-07-2022 at 06:00 PM.

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    Lost and driftin' Arquemann's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kishy View Post
    Not wanting to leverage your thread as an ad, but I will note that this: http://www.grandmarq.net/vb/showthre...OBD1-Scan-Tool
    has been tested on my friend's 95 dustbuster van, which is GM "OBD 1.5" and it worked - but in order to do that, we needed to use a newer cartridge than the one I am including with it. I think Pathfinder '96 is the one that was not too new for the tool, but did cover the vehicle.

    So this tells us that if you want a capable tool, I'm selling one, but you'd need to get the more proper cartridge to use with it (they're available out there in the world). Certainly no pressure nor rush, but if you feel like you want it, shoot me a message.

    As for the thread and vehicle overall: these B-bodies are getting hard to find over here, so I can only imagine they aren't much more common over there. Looks decently clean. And yes, big butt.

    Wouldn't mind seeing more of how the trailer hitch works - how the ball mount/drawbar attaches and how the body of the frame is shaped and mounts to the car. Might seem stupid, but Euro and North American trailer hitches are rather different.
    Was the van one of those cases where it had an OBD1 port, but the paperclip trick wouldn't work? How about other OBD scanners, did some others not work?
    While it seems like a good offer, I kinda want to be 100% sure, since it'll cost a lot anyways just to get that case here. I see those 1996 Pathfinder cartridges are available atleast. Dunno what I'll do yet, I'll call around some more.

    I've gotta check if the trailer connector is any good at some point so maybe I'll snap a couple pics while I'm at it. Yes I'm aware that the hitches can be different, how exactly I don't know. We use 7 or 13 pin trailer connectors. BTW, the trailer brake controllers you use are illegal in Europe.

    I found an old listing for this car from 2021, it says the trans was renovated in 2019, which kinda smells like BS. Well, I'll spend a couple shillings and get the previous owners' phone numbers if I can.
    1985 Mercury Grand Marquis LS, "Maisa"
    1995 Chevrolet Caprice Classic STW, "Sally"

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    GMN Regular DerekTheGreat's Avatar
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    Yeah, cool car. I've always wanted one of those in Roadmaster or Cadillac flavor. Cap-rice flavor is good too. But now they're pretty much dried up or beat up.

    Your trans probably was overhauled in 2019. Trouble is, "rebuilt" doesn't mean it's back to factory shifts and smooth sailing again. Dad had the 4L60E in his Camaro rebuilt once it started shifting bad. They ended up pulling it twice after that and it still shifts funny at times.
    1985 LTD Crown Victoria - SOLD
    1988 Town Car Signature - Current Party Barge

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    Lost and driftin' Arquemann's Avatar
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    Did some shopping today and ordered:
    -ALDL-to-USB cable from http://aldlcable.com/aldl.asp I should be able to use it with Scan9495 for diagnostics, live data and quite importantly; transmission parameters
    -Transgo 4L6ISO3 TCC valve, which will hopefully fix the slipping lockup
    -Champion spark plugs
    -Door panel clips (because of course everything is rattling and loose in a Chebby...)
    -Tailgate glass lift strut, defrost connector is broken and it looks crusty anyways

    I'll also need to get more stuff, which I can get locally and save money:
    -TPS sensor (cheap to check, can apparently cause late/hard shifts)
    -Turn signal return springs (doesn't self-cancel)
    -Trans pan gasket, only cork stuff available, what in the fuck?

    I didn't end up ordering a new AC compressor, yet. The seller said that the compressor seals are done and the freon leaks out in a couple weeks.
    Kinda want AC, but it'd be about 250€ to get a compressor to Finland, plus probably another hundred to get fresh ice cube juice into the system. I could probably swap the compressor myself.
    And it only adds to the fuel consumption, which is just about at a tolerable level currently, this week I got 22 mpg commuting. Problem is not the speed, but even in light traffic I'm constantly on and off the throttle and this whale weighs over 2 tons.
    1985 Mercury Grand Marquis LS, "Maisa"
    1995 Chevrolet Caprice Classic STW, "Sally"

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