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Guest BJM

1985 Riviera Steering Wheel Detail Inquiry

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Guest BJM

1985, Firemist Beige, tan leather with suede inserts, $5,995, DEALER, 641-816-3145, Green, IA.

I think this car ended up at an old car dealer in Greene Iowa.

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Guest BJM
SOLD!!!

Interesting. I got the (original) dealer down to about $3000 retail as I recall. No one was buying this car so I am 99% sure he wholesaled it, so maybe $2000?

It was not necessarily a low mileage car at the time at around 110,000 miles but was an extremely well maintained car. It could pass for a 40,000 mile car.

Now this dealer (I believe it was an old car dealer as there are 2 in Greene Iowa and they are father and son so basically one "classic" car dealer) Offered at the price of $5995, I highly doubt it sold for close to $6000. And it could have been a different car but I highly doubt it as well.

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I bought a w-15 steering wheels and installed it on my 89 Reatta. The problem is the horn contact plunger I got from the dealer is to short it does not have contact with the spring plate. Any suggestions or recomendations would be greatly appreciated. Thankspost-78046-143141768432_thumb.jpg

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For the AACA Forum database & those interested in '79 - '85 Rivieras or Toronados:

The Olds 307 V8 is a very durable engine. My '84 Toronado (pretty much identical running gear to the Riviera) just rolled over to 190,000 miles. I've driven it for 26 years (picked up on 2/3/1984). The only internal engine work has been the replacement of the timing gear set @ about 150,000 miles. The nylon tipped aluminum camshaft gear's teeth had disintegrated. It was not a very expensive repair & only required the front engine cover/related parts to be removed. I installed a Crane Cams double roller timing set for added durability.

The 325-4L Hydramatic is not as durable as the 307 V8 but two 'upgrades' will keep it very happy. As was mentioned, an auxiliary ATF cooler is most beneficial. Cooler ATF = a happier automatic. I mounted a small Hayden cooler (5" x 9") at the lower right corner & in front of the A/C condenser. It is plumbed in series with the factory radiator cooler's return line. The other upgrade for the 325-4L is a 'shift reprogramming kit'. I had a Trans Go Shift Kit installed during the first rebuild @ 77,000 miles. Keep in mind that a still healthy transmission can have a kit installed without a complete rebuild. Only the valve body, separator plate & servo are removed and modified (trans not removed). The 'shift points' are the same but the shifts are quickened & do not become harsh.

The relative health of a 325-4L or a 200-4R (the same mechanicals & hydraulics) can be evaluated with a test drive. The weak point in this design (IMHO) is the hydraulic control of the intermediate band. This band (the only one) creates 2nd 'gear' when it stops the rotation of the direct clutch drum. The cloud soft shifts which GM engineered for this unit create long transitions between 'gears'. This in turn generates excessive heat & prematurely wears out the band and clutch frictions. To evaluate: 1) Fully warm up the ATF with local start/stop driving for at least 15 minutes. 2) From a standstill, perform a series of accelerations ranging from gentle to moderate (1/2 throttle). 3) Pay close attention to the 'quality' of the 1-2 up shift. If it feels like a 2 part shift with a long sliding transition ending with a bump (or abrupt jolt), the band is on it's way out. With a worn band, this will be more noticeable as the accelerations become stronger. The 2-3 up shift or 3-2 downshift involve both the band and the direct clutch. Since there are timing considerations between these elements, a worn band and/or direct clutch can result in a 'flare' during either shift. If the engine appears to momentarily speed up at the 2-3 or 3-2 shift (flare), a rebuild will soon be necessary. Because the gear ratio between 3rd and 4th is close (1:1 / 1:.69), the 4th (overdrive) clutch and it's hydraulic control is less of a concern.

In my opinion, the 325-4L is a fine transmission for a Riviera or Toronado as long as it contains a shift kit & an auxiliary ATF cooler. The 307 doesn't make enough power to overwhelm this modified Hydramatic. And hopefully, owners of these fine cars prefer a 'motoring' experience. I certainly do...!:)

Paul

Paul,

Years ago I acquired a 79 SType, and it had the Olds 307 in it. I went out of my way to gain a 3.8 Turbo-charged Buick V-6 to put in it when the Olds died.....that 3.8 sat in my garage on an engine stand for years and years, and the Olds engine never gave me reason to do the swap.........I sold the car at the 254,000 mile point, and the engine separately a fews years later, engine stand and all.....

Dale

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