1988 B2K 064 coming back to life

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1988 B2K 064 coming back to life

Post by sjandras »

My first post after watching and reading for many years. I just purchased 1988 B2K #64 after it went through years of deferred maintenance while in storage. It was also my first experience buying a car and having it shipped sight unseen, but it was a gamble I was willing to take. Stressful and a rollercoaster for sure, but I'm now content with my purchase after a few weeks of fiddling. The story is that that car was driven 14k miles in the first three years, then sat in the warehouse of a well known midyear Corvette restorer until 2019. He then sold it to a dealer, whom did some hokey things to "get it running" for sale. I spoke to the long term owner before purchasing to confirm the story and it all added up.

The car arrived in an enclosed carrier two days after the deal was finalized, then the work started... So far: replaced plugs and wires, replaced a few leaking oil hoses and AN fittings, vacuum leaks, EGR plumbing done wrong, cold start injector was stuck causing a horrible cold idle, microfueler functional confirmation (which helped me figure out the cold start injector issue!), serpentine belt replacement, new brake rotors, pads, and full fluid flush, and headlight motor rebuilds.

I'll post some troubleshooting lessons I've learned for future reference soon. I hope to bring some life to the forum, I do think these cars are under-appreciated and they need more attention!

As of now, I've put about 100 shakedown miles on it after truly "getting it running" and it was all worth it! Next on the list are: trans fluid replacement, overdrive troubleshooting, coolant flush, freon leak check and charge, Bose amp swap for Maxima units (as I did on my ZR1), antenna rebuild, and I'm sure a ton more as I start to drive it and more stuff breaks!
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*89x2*
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Re: 1988 B2K 064 coming back to life

Post by *89x2* »

Wow!!

Which "Corvette Restorer" had the car?

And what's the skinny on the Maxima Bose parts? :wtf

Keep up the good work!
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Re: 1988 B2K 064 coming back to life

Post by Arctic91 »

:thumbs

Beautiful B2K!

Cheers,
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Re: 1988 B2K 064 coming back to life

Post by sjandras »

*89x2* wrote: ↑Mon Jul 05, 2021 9:11 pm Wow!!

Which "Corvette Restorer" had the car?

And what's the skinny on the Maxima Bose parts? :wtf

Keep up the good work!
It was owned by Gary Naber in Houston. He also did some minor body work on the hood and some paint touch-up work on it early in life.

The Nissan Maxima Bose amps are a near drop-in replacement for the Corvette amps. Pre-91 you need to buy pigtails and solder them on or solder direct like the factory amps. Tuning is a bit different, but it beats a non-functioning system. There are a few posts on zr1.net with details. I found a dozen of them in a local junk yard for $5 per amp a few years ago.
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Re: 1988 B2K 064 coming back to life

Post by sjandras »

It was a productive vacation day in the garage. The AC now works after tightening one connection that was loose for some reason. It holds pressure now and blows ice cold after being vacuumed and charged with R134a.

I also swapped all four amps out, the stereo sounds good as it ever did. The front speakers on the pre-90 cars are a huge pain because the door panels need to come off. Overall, still not too bad for about four hours of effort to do fronts and rears. See a couple pics below for the old amp vs. the new Maxima amp installed on one of the rears. Yes, hole pattern is identical, literally drop in replacement. Two wire positions are swapped, that's the only difference and easy to correct while soldering in.
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Re: 1988 B2K 064 coming back to life

Post by *89x2* »

I love this tech tip. Thanks for posting, and for joining the forum!!!

Gary Nabor - a great name, legendary for midyear restorations. Sorry though, don't see any connection or value with him for the C4+ cars. Perhaps this is evident in what you found, too. There are some good C4 shops. Corvette Center in CT is one, and there are some others around, too.
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Re: 1988 B2K 064 coming back to life

Post by sjandras »

Yes, agreed. For sure no value add based on who owned it. It's just piece of mind knowing that it wasn't hacked on by a bunch of random owners over the course of its life. Will keep posting updates as relevant. It's fun getting back into C4s after a few years away.
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Re: 1988 B2K 064 coming back to life

Post by Jeroenvgfn »

Nice Corvette :jsmile
Great mix of cars too :hi
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Re: 1988 B2K 064 coming back to life

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Still slowly poking at the car to make improvements where needed. I decided to dig into the intake to try to find an elusive vacuum leak, I think it is the runner to plenum on the driver side. It likely was not assembled correctly by the dealer's mechanic when he replaced injectors based on other handiwork I've seen.... While it's apart, I'm also doing coolant hoses and a new aluminum radiator. I'm going back to the OE hose/ thermostat configuration, which I've read Callaway now recommends.

A few issues along the way.... Every hose I touch breaks or frays when getting off the barb. The worst is the turbo coolant line that goes from the driver side radiator end cap to the turbo banjo fittings. That one snapped as if it was made of plastic, super brittle from time and heat! Now looking at how to replace, I'm curious how you get the banjo fitting off the pass side turbo? Is it possible without pulling the turbo or engine?

Is there such a thing as a Callaway service manual supplement?

Thanks!
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Re: 1988 B2K 064 coming back to life

Post by SurfnSun »

sjandras wrote: ↑Sun Aug 01, 2021 8:47 pm Still slowly poking at the car to make improvements where needed. I decided to dig into the intake to try to find an elusive vacuum leak, I think it is the runner to plenum on the driver side. It likely was not assembled correctly by the dealer's mechanic when he replaced injectors based on other handiwork I've seen.... While it's apart, I'm also doing coolant hoses and a new aluminum radiator. I'm going back to the OE hose/ thermostat configuration, which I've read Callaway now recommends.

A few issues along the way.... Every hose I touch breaks or frays when getting off the barb. The worst is the turbo coolant line that goes from the driver side radiator end cap to the turbo banjo fittings. That one snapped as if it was made of plastic, super brittle from time and heat! Now looking at how to replace, I'm curious how you get the banjo fitting off the pass side turbo? Is it possible without pulling the turbo or engine?

Is there such a thing as a Callaway service manual supplement?

Thanks!
Wish I could help you on this one, but I don't know. Certainly pulling the turbo is a much easier way to get to the banjo fitting...
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Re: 1988 B2K 064 coming back to life

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A couple victories today. I was able to get the radiator hoses off the engine, the lower one to the water pump was difficult but I was able to do it without removing the scavenge pump.

The bigger win was getting the turbo coolant return hose out. The passenger side banjo bolt does indeed come out without turbo removal. It's tight.... I will have a local shop remake the assembly for me with some higher temp rated hose.

Also, I had noticed a periodic drip of coolant under the car in couple hundred miles of shakedown so far. When I got the banjo bolt out, there was no crush washer on the turbo side. Looking at the banjo fitting, it looks like it has been that way since new based on the face wear. All faces that had a washer were very clearly worn the same, the one without still had anodizing on the face and the banjo bolt looked untouched.

Some pics below. Much better day than last weekend! Ready to start reassembly with new rad and hoses.
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Re: 1988 B2K 064 coming back to life

Post by 1988Callaway#16 »

Hi sjandas. Welcome to the COG! Great looking 88 B2K Convertible! I have an 88 vert #16. I have to remove/replace both of those water hoses on my car. Any tips or special tools that you used to get them off? Did you check with Callaway to see if they had those hose assemblies available? My car has 55,000 miles on it and needs some work. I'm planning on bringing it to Carlisle next year for the 35th Anniversary of the first B2K Corvette. Maybe I'll get to meet you and see your car in person there. Be Well! Kevin
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Re: 1988 B2K 064 coming back to life

Post by sjandras »

Hi Kevin,

No special tools per se, but I did have to sacrifice a wrench by grinding its thickness down a bit to remove the passenger side banjo bolt. I couldn't get the right leverage angle on the bolt to break it loose with the open end and the closed end couldn't fit between frame and bolt without thinning.

I did check with Callaway on a replacement turbo coolant return assembly but didn't hear back from their parts guy. I ended up going to a local hydraulic shop and they replaced the hoses (high temp rated and flexible) for me while reusing the custom formed banjo fittings for a reasonable price.
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Re: 1988 B2K 064 coming back to life

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Another productive day in the garage. The car is back together and running well. The combination of new water pump, new radiator, and returning to OE coolant hose / thermostat arrangement dropped running temp by 30 deg! I had been seeing 235F coolant while cruising with AC on and 90F ambient. Now it runs just a bit over 200F.

I do have a MIL code 36 now that hadn't been there before, so will need to dig into that. MAF burn-off circuit. Hopefully I just got a ground wet and corroded while I was cleaning.... We'll see! I think I'm about done tinkering for the summer, planning to pull the trans and have the overdrive rebuilt this winter. After that, it should be pretty well mechanically sorted.
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Re: 1988 B2K 064 coming back to life

Post by SurfnSun »

Love it! Keep up the great work :beer
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Re: 1988 B2K 064 coming back to life

Post by Jeroenvgfn »

Awesome :jsmile
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Re: 1988 B2K 064 coming back to life

Post by sjandras »

Thanks guys!

It really is a complex car to dig into for the time, but once you're into it everything makes sense. So far I've been lucky to be able to handle all wrenching myself with an occasional "hold this right here and don't move" help from my oldest daughter (10 yrs) when I need a third hand.

I maintained my 1990 ZR1 for 18 years and 24k miles and that car was far less overwhelming than this one packaging-wise. That includes LT5 plenum pulls for starter and injector replacement.

I am dreading the transmission pull, but that's just a normal
early C4 Corvette challenge. I'm waiting until I have all winter to let it sit and take it in small bites. While it's down I also plan to have the bumpers refinished and get the hardtop I purchased locally color matched. I love that look on a C4 especially with Dymags!
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Re: 1988 B2K 064 coming back to life

Post by sjandras »

Hardtop is now black. I took a shot at 3M wrap and it came out pretty well. I'll eventually have it painted, but it was a fun experiment.
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Re: 1988 B2K 064 coming back to life

Post by SurfnSun »

Great looking car!!
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Re: 1988 B2K 064 coming back to life

Post by kingforward »

Ditto. Well done!
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