KDirk

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KDirk last won the day on November 19 2015

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About KDirk

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    St. Louis, Missouri

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  • Biography
    A technically minded perfectionist who has found Reattas to be a perfect outlet for applying those characteristics. I also collect and repair vintage Sansui hi-fi gear (from late 1960's to late 1970's primarily) and dabble in pinball machine repairs. I play classical organ and like to mess around with electronic design as it relates to embedded systems. Am a capable mechanic ; and getting better by sheer necessity.

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  1. KDirk

    Trunk lock repair

    I figured they were either discontinued already, or on the way out. Get 'em while they're hot, I guess.
  2. KDirk

    PROM, memcal, etc.

    I've removed a few successfully by using a pair of dental picks. One to hold the carrier contact in place, a second to gently pry the IC pin and break the solder joint. I've found no good way to unsolder these so far. I have a hot air rework station and couldn't get the solder to melt temp without damaging the carrier assembly. Even with the smallest tip, using a soldering pencil to melt the joints is next to impossible. Good luck.
  3. KDirk

    Service engine soon light but no code stored

    A couple of notes to add. A failed SES bulb in the cluster WILL cause a QDM fault on all model years, which automatically sets an E026 code as current. Other failures can also set E026, but the first thing to check when that code sets is the SES indicator. If it doesn't light, that is your very first matter to address. It is possible that the ECM failure itself on your 91 Caddy caused the SES to light (basically the ECM self identifying the fact it has had an undefined internal malfunction) although failure of the RAM that holds the codes would also account for the light setting with no codes stored, if there were some other actual fault that triggered the light to begin with. So, kind of a needless distinction in root cause. Finally, on the 3800 engine, and the Reatta specifically, a failure of the ignition control module will NOT set any codes or trigger the SES telltale in almost all cases, making the on board diagnostics pretty well useless for identifying an ICM failure. Bottom line, if you are running rough, or have bad shifts/clunks that fell like a transmission shifting poorly - but no codes set - suspect the ICM. About the only way to prove that failure out is to swap with a known good spare (which I heavily suggest all Reatta owners keep on hand at this stage) to see if that clears the symptoms. Otherwise, you can end up chasing a whole flock of geese around wildly trying to pin down the cause. Been there and done that..
  4. KDirk

    Trunk lock repair

    Barney, just FYI. Strattec (F/K/A Briggs and Stratton - lock division) has been the manufacturer/supplier for these parts for years after GM SPO generally stopped dealing with older design lock and key parts directly. As an aside, there are two versions of the shutter assembly. The correct one has the slot offset slightly to one side. There is another version that has the slot (and spring loaded slot cover) dead center. This latter design will fit the Reatta trunk lock, but will not allow proper insertion of the key as the slot on the shutter cap doesn't line up to the keyway in the cylinder correctly. Be sure the ones you are getting have the offset slot, or they won't work right once installed. Ask me now I know (heh). Further, both versions are available in black finish (correct for the Reatta) and bright stainless (which will also work but is non-stock on a Reatta, of course). I was talking to a locksmith about an unrelated matter a few months back, and he hooked me up with a few extra sets of the correct parts kit in matte black when he saw I was driving a Reatta and we got to talking about them. I am wondering now if these parts are officially discontinued, and we are simply drawing down stock on hand, or if Strattec is still actively making these. The last GM vehicles that used these old 5 pin key systems were made mid 1990's now, when they changed to a ten pin keying system, and are going on 30 years old.Therefore, I'd not be surprised to see support for these parts being withdrawn.
  5. KDirk

    PROM, memcal, etc.

    Be forewarned with regard to reprogramming that the original EPROM may not always reliably take a new image due to age. We are now finding that some chips past the 25-30 year mark exhibit a tendency to have bytes that simply will not hold data for a new write cycle, even when properly erased (which is required before writing a new ROM image to the chip). Hopefully you will not find that to be the case, but putting it out there as it is becoming a more common problem with legacy hardware like this. Anyway, if you get it re-programmed, will be interesting to see if that corrects the issues you are having.
  6. KDirk

    Did you know?

    Ronnie, your "rant' is spot on. The only reason for the apparent popularity of the Facebook group is collective laziness. "Everybody is doing it, I need to be there too", is the prevailing attitutde that permeates almost everything now. Id point and laugh if it weren't so pathetic. Now, I haven't been very active here for a while due to extenuating circumstances, but that fact notwithstanding, I still consider this place to be the defacto standard for Reatta related discourse. With what we now know about facebook pimping the personal data (willingly supplied by the careless masses I needn't add, but will anyway) of every one of its users - among other distasteful business practices - there is no reason at all to be there anymore, except for the fact that the place still has the momentum created by having the critical mass of users in one place. I remember a hypothetical question about what one would do if everyone else was jumping off a bridge...well, lemmings [almost] one and all apparently. So, we who hang out here as our principal resource for the Reatta will persevere without the involvement of those who wish to go second rate at "creepy Mark Z's den of deceit and discontent". Remember: trends aren't smart, they are just popular. Often they are quite stupid in fact, but that is the way of the world. I will never go near Zuckersperg's spy and propaganda operation on principal alone, and know that I'm missing nothing at all of importance. And while I clearly run contrary to the crowd, I still insist that the less people know about me, the better. Going along just to fit in is for suckers. Really though, I know that I'm fighting a lost cause. I have no issue at all with anyone wanting to setup other Reatta related groups. It just shouldn't be done at facebook, as it is the worst possible venue for any number of very good reasons that have come to light. Of course, regret comes most strongly at those lacking foresight. Before this era of big social media finally crashes and burns, there will be enormous consequences for countless people who played along because it was the path of least resistance. And that's a damn shame, because it didn't have to be this way.
  7. KDirk

    PROM, memcal, etc.

    OK. Gonna throw in on this. First, the memcal contains two components within the carrier. First is a 27C256 UVEpsom, soldered to the contacts in the carrier. Removal of this IC is difficult and it best, if reporgramming one, to remove the UV block sticker and use a UV eraser chamber and then reprogram. This IC contains all the operating code for the cars engine. The second component is a dual inline package circuit board with some surface mount components on it that serves as backup logic for limp home mode in the even of a EPROM failure. This part stores nothing, and there is nothing to reprogram. I honestly don't know what, if any, effect it would have on normal operation if the backup logic failed but the EPROM was still good. All that said, have you already replaced the ECM? I have seen ECMS that exhibit failures on only one input/output port while remaining normally functional otherwise. I had the happen on one of my 88's where the O2 sensor already read open, and was the ECM , rather than the sensor or wiring. If you have the correct MEM-CAL for the year and model, there shouldn't be issues like you are having excepting a ECM or MEM-CAL defect. And just to clear up one detail, this is a 90 your are working on, correct?
  8. KDirk

    Passenger side vent window

    I have spare vent windows if you still need one. Can message me here.
  9. KDirk

    D-A-N-I-E-L is a GREAT MAN!

    Daniel, i am in for two sets (or more if supply/demand permits) if you have another batch run. I've done two of my four cars with the bushings you had produced and will need to do the other two at some point, plus would like at least one extra set in reserve in case I break down and buy another car at some point. Really, I'd buy four sets provided you make another batch large enough that no one else gets shorted were I to buy that many. If you decide to do another run and need a deposit pre-production, let me know.
  10. KDirk

    Early Reatta Sketchs - Very Interesting

    A Reatta hatchback? That's a bit interesting, but I can't say I like the way it changes the flow of the body lines. The green one is pretty close to production appearance, save for the gauges. I do really like the modernized red and black one (oblique rear view).
  11. KDirk

    b556 code

    That 556 code is usually because the BCM EEPROM which contains the odometer, vin and option content has been corrupted and can no longer be read by the BCM. Thus the odometer is not displayed and no further mileage is accrued until a good EEPROM is installed in the BCM. Can probably get a GM dealer to send it out and program it still, though that service is getting difficult to find anymore for cars of this vintage. I can be of assistance, if you are so inclined you can PM me here for details.
  12. KDirk

    camshaft posision sensor

    Are you sure you got a 91 service manual? It has a red cover. 90 FSM had a dark blue cover. 89 had a grey cover, with illustrations of both the Reatta and Riviera on it in white line art, and 88 was dark blue with the same illustrations (90 and 91 had no pictures of the cars on the cover). I've noted a few errors, myself, but nothing as glaring as what you are reporting. I don't think there was an early ("new product information") and a seperate final edition for 91 as with some previous years of the FSM.
  13. KDirk

    How good is JB Weld?

    JB weld is pretty good on steel and cast ferrous metals. I've used it on brass and even aluminum with decent results, but I'm guessing what you have is what we call "pot metal" in the plumbing business; a zinc based composite casting material used a lot in cars for parts that get chrome plate (like emblems, door handles and side mirrors, before they were all plastic). In plumbing, many faucet bodies and bathtub spouts/trip plates.are made from this stuff. Depending on the surface area that can be "jb welded" and whether you can embed reinforcing material in the JB weld to span the crack, you may or may not get decent strength from such a repair. As a short term fix, it may work, but I'd be looking for a replacement mirror.
  14. KDirk

    Historical article: Reatta, born in 1982

    Interesting to note that the power headrest motor and some related components of that portion of the seat have no part number assigned, and were officially listed in the book as "N.S.", or not serviced. So if it died, you were outta luck unless you could scavenge them from a salvage yard car. Rather strange to see that those were not serviceable parts. Must have been something to do with the vendor that provided them as a complete assembly and portions thereof were not supplied to GM SPO and thus not available to purchase. Would kind of suck if/when it broke and you couldn't fix the power headrest.
  15. KDirk

    Hemmings online article on future collectable cars

    Reattas are getting some attention of late, and prices appear to be going up. I would caution that using the high dollar examples already cited upthread as good examples is probably misguided. I will be blown over with surprise if the driftwood 'vert gets the asking price of $27,900. I'm not knocking the car, I just have doubts it can fetch that price, at least on eBay. That's Barrett-Jackson level pricing there, and not too long ago they sold a near new select 60 'vert in the mid $20's, a bit shy of this driftwood roadster. I think asking nearly $28,000 is optimistic yet. Watch that one and see if it sells and if so what the selling price shown is. If it gets reduced for final sale, or goes through with no takers, that would bear out belief that we aren't quite at the point of getting into that level of pricing yet, even as an outlier. There are several very nice coupes and roadsters on eBay presently listed from around $7500 to $12,000 that have been repeatedly reposted - some for months now - with no sale. And I have been watching to gauge where things are as well as where they are trending. Another thing I'm seeing on eBay specifically is that sellers are using it to advertise, and then making a deal "offline" thereby bypassing eBay collecting the final value fees they charge as it remains unsold, so far as eBay (and any uninvolved casual observers) are aware. This, of course, is a violation of the terms of service but I am seeing it happen in several categories including vintage Hi-Fi and pinball/arcade games which I follow as well. Basically, some of these sellers are using ebay for the wide exposure, but selling in transactions that are conducted outside of eBay so they can avoid the fees. One way they do this is to set the asking price so high no one is likely to bid. That gives them a safe buffer to get the exposure of a nationwide ad, while not getting nicked for whatever percentage eBay is charging for a successful sale. And if it does sell, well, they just got well more than expected so they win anyway. In any case, some things to keep in mind lest we delude ourselves about pricing trends for tbe Reatta.