1982 Buick Regal

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Hi. I'm new to the Forum.
I don't know much about cars. I know parts pretty well, but what they do is kinda a mystery.
I've been thinking about doing something major to my car. Right now I've got a 3.8 v6. it doesn't have verymuch power. I think my rings are shot or something. it smokes a lot too.
I figure I'm gonna have to do something big to fix this problem so why not do something fun.
I'm thinking of boring out the cylinders and putting in oversized pistons to make it about a 4.0. Another option I'm considering is taking out my existing engine and putting in a 350 V8.
I don't really know what's involved in each one. I think having a 350 would be kickass. I plan to do a bit of performance work on it later on, but I still don't want to spend too much, and don't want to do too much work.
I guess I'm just asking for some advice. What would you do if it were your car? No, I'm not gonna sell it or trade it for something cooler, this is my car. I wana do something cool. Any help?
Thanks a lot.

posted by  BlueMeanie

Before you decide it's time for a rebuild, check cylinder compression and check engine vacuum. If all is OK - I suggest a complete tune-up for your car and not a rebuild. :thumbs:

posted by  DodgeRida67

I've already done a complete tune-up. Air Filter, oil filter, cap and rotor, pcv valve, crank case filter, Bosch platinum plugs, new plug wires, fuel filter, put in some octane boost. I've got 20-50 in there now.
I don't remember the numbers but my mechanic said my compression is about equal to a Geo Metro.
It's a reliable car. I just took it on a tip to the coast and back without any trouble (about 300 miles)
I'm just looking to do more to it without having to deal with too much trouble.
From what I know, the two options I said before would be a decent plan, unless I'm missing something. Any other suggestions?
Thanks a bunch,

posted by  BlueMeanie

I would recommend going to the 350. My brother did it with his '83 and it is not a hard conversion to do.

Besides, there are a lot more parts and upgrades out there for a 350 than there are for your current motor.

posted by  theman352001

Is it fuel injected or carbureted.. becuase I know some cadillacs were injected in 82. If it's injected, did you replace the O2 sensor, could be running quite rich.

If it is carbureted, and requires and engine swap, unless your car is REALLY nice, it's not worth it, car's 24 years old after all. Probably cost you at least 3 grand just for a rebuild w/ R&R.

posted by  88GrandPrixSE

It's carburated. No, it's not real nice, but it's my car. I'm not trying to get this thing to be the baddest street rod in Oregon. I just want a good deal of horsepower when I need it, and enough to turn a couple heads. Nothing real fancy. I'm just weighing the possibilities of putting in a 350, or doing an overhaul on my current engine to go from 232 to 250. I'm thinking the overhaul would be cheaper. I suppose I'll have to get a new transmission and all kinds of new parts to supports the 350. That sounds a little too expensive. I'm just kinda lost in this whole car thing.

posted by  BlueMeanie

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