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Thread: Daves Vectra GSi

  1. #1
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    Default Daves Vectra GSi

    Thought I might as well start a thread to keep a track of my progress on the GSi.

    Original thread from buying the car:

    http://www.vectra-c.com/forum/showthread.php?t=124699

    So, first off in December I started with the basic bits and gave the car a full service (no point bolting on the fancy bits and neglecting the basics). So that included: oil, oil filter, air filter, pollen filter & fuel filter. Whilst I was at it I also replaced the wiper blades and fitted a spare set of Insignia washer jets that I had lying around. With that the car was ready for winter and trundled through the snow quite happy.
    Next up was to replace one of the Climate control control modules located under the passenger airbag as quite frankly the noise it made every time the car was opened got embarrassing. Thankfully it was easy enough to access and was sorted quickly.

    Come January time and with my Astra GSi sold the Vectra was seeing a bit more use, and with the car being over 6 years old with over 80k on the clock and the origional timing belt still on it was like playing Russian roulet everytime you started it. So with that I got one of the guys at work to fit a new GM belt, rollers and also opted to stick a new water pump in there as well.

    February time and whilst driving in the rain the drivers wiper stopped working. As usual it was the worn ball and socket that had popped off. With a new wiper linkage being in the region of £50 I was lucky enough to be able too, eh, 'aquire' a linkage off a newer car which had the newer style design. Clearly though this had been a previous issue as someone had been in there before.
    As I was also a bit bored that day I got a new header tank to replace the rather skanky one that was on there, by the looks of things its had an oil cooler issue at some point and never been cleaned out so was beyond soaking in G101 and firing in the dishwasher.

    Towards the end of February fed up with the distinctly 'interesting' handling of the car I called Steve @ LMF and ordered up a set of Bilstein B4 dampers and some Eibach springs. These were fitted along with new GM strut top bearing and new front drop links & some Hecko wind deflectors:



    Upon removing the old suspension it was clear why the suspension was rather interesting. Amongst the issues: 1 leaking damper, 2 snapped rear springs, 1 snapped front spring & the front springs were also non-GSi items. So all fitted back up with the tracking done and it was sitting much better:





    Next up it was the slight running issue. Although 90% of the time the car drove fine, I was finding that whilst under load there was a very very slight mis-fire from 1 cylinder. I did some pondering on this and as I was intending to replace the spark plugs anyway I also decided to also pre-empt things and fit some new coil packs (I previously had a 3.0 Omega which had a similar problem due to a burst coil pack). Unfortunately one of the coil packs are now no longer serviced by GM, but luckily enough we have a supplier that deals in OE spec equipment so I managed to source 2 new Bosch packs for £74 each which was a fraction of the GM cost.

    So as we started:



    and continueing:



    And finally access to the coil packs and plugs:



    And the first coil pack to be removed:





    As well as this 6 new GM plugs were fitted, unfortunately whoever previously changed them was either lazy or had some muscular disorder preventing them from tightening them properly - 3 were tight, 2 were barely tight, one was barely fingertip tight.

    The second coil pack wasn't nearly as bad however I opted to change it anyway given it was an original.

    Once back together and out for a drive the differance was immediate, flawless through the rev range and the mis was gone......happy days!.....well sort of. Unfortunately whilst out I got rather 'enthusiastic' and ended up going airborne for a brief stint, the landing was perfect right up until the 'crunch' of the front pipe hitting the deck and the subsequent blow from the flexi joint.

    Once back at work and on the ramp it became evident that the full system (all of which is still the original) was far from in good condition, the rear section has also been patched (badly) at some point.

    Initially Ill be replacing the front pipe/cat section but the rest of the system will also be replaced shortly. I looked at several pattern part options as they are cheaper than GM but after a recent experience of a pattern exhaust part on a Zafira I've opted to spend a little extra and go for the GM one which should be here in the next couple of days. Along with that I've also got 2 rear upper control arms to go on as the outside bush on the drivers side is decidedly funked.

    Thanks for reading this far, further updates to come.

  2. #2
    Regular Member shb1988's Avatar
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    sounds like quite a journey cracking looking car though!!

  3. #3
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    Vehicle : Lada

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    Year : 1954

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    Looking good Dave.

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    Good to see lots of tlc for another gsi! Will be interesting to see what exhaust you decide on as I would love to change mine too. It doesn't look that low on your new suspension but I bet its tightened it up loads. I saw a little picture in tv when you first got it and wondered what you had been doing to it. Can't wait for further updates from you.

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    Quote Originally Posted by wazpaz View Post
    Good to see lots of tlc for another gsi! Will be interesting to see what exhaust you decide on as I would love to change mine too. It doesn't look that low on your new suspension but I bet its tightened it up loads. I saw a little picture in tv when you first got it and wondered what you had been doing to it. Can't wait for further updates from you.
    Cheers. Exhaust wise Im looking at a few options, however I dont want anything that sounds like a 747 on full throttle and I also want tailpipes that look near standard, hoping to finalise a choice in the next few days so it can be put together with the front pipe.
    Suspension has made a big differance its lower but not enough to be scrapping over speed bumps etc which is nice. Handlings not as tight as it would have been using Bilstein B6's etc. but its not as solid a ride either so its a nice compromise.

    Quote Originally Posted by DasArab View Post
    Looking good Dave.
    Cheers dude.

    Quote Originally Posted by shb1988 View Post
    sounds like quite a journey cracking looking car though!!
    Thanks for the comment.

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    NIce work & looking good

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    Regular Member chewy71's Avatar
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    I REALLY like this car, it's stunning

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    Seems like every time you looked at a component, you've found that the previous owner did a bodge on it. It might be a good idea to go over the whole car with a fine tooth comb to spot any further bodges.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jezzy View Post
    Seems like every time you looked at a component, you've found that the previous owner did a bodge on it. It might be a good idea to go over the whole car with a fine tooth comb to spot any further bodges.
    I only spotted the plugs that may be a bodge, but stripped threads is a bodge in my eyes! Spring tails break. wipers are non maint, as is the exhaust and coil packs, and stepper! ...just my thoughts.

  10. #10
    Regular Member Steven's Avatar
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    Looking good Dave

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