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J3Studio

Are There Any Guides To Purchasing Riviera Late Models?

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I had to fix the wobbling steering column on the 95 that I owned for a while.  I found a really good and easy fix on the Riviera Performance forum.  There's a link to that forum on the Rivowners.org face page.  Its a very popular sight for the owners of the last generation of Rivieras.  Basic stuff as well as performance mods.

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12 hours ago, J3Studio said:

 

I did—and I sent them an email.

Did you hear back yet?

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Just now, RivNut said:

Did you hear back yet?

 

Nope. I asked for more pictures.

 

Your SearchTempest suggestion was a great one, by the way.

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1 minute ago, J3Studio said:

 

Nope. I asked for more pictures.

 

Your SearchTempest suggestion was a great one, by the way.

Another search engine that collects and combines ads from CL etc is Adhuntr.com.  Nope, I spelled it correctly.  It breaks down searches by regions of the country.

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20 minutes ago, Rivman said:

 

Here are a few of the differences from year to year …

Publication1.thumb.jpg.67a3ac2a6ad30802e5655d192fac456c.jpg

Some items to keep in mind …

 

The ’95 & ’96 both have the same transaxle that was used in the ’91-’93 Riviera, a bit lighter car, the 4T60-E, it was upgraded for the supercharged engine, 4T60-E HD, but the same basic transaxle.

 

In ’97 the transaxle was redone, and from then on the 4T65E HD was used. Also, in ’97 the suspension was changed/improved. The problem there is that it was upgraded “again” for ‘98 & ’99 leaving the ’97 with a one year one model suspension. I haven’t looked recently but that was a problem even shortly after production, you could not get parts for the ’97 suspension.

 

In theory the ’98 & ’99 are the most desirable because they had worked “all/most” of the bugs out by then, however, those years were the fewest produced. They even added new colors for the last couple of years, one of which was not even available until after production ended?!?!?

 

I have noticed a few other odds and ends over the years too, small things that changed to save GM money in production. The door vapor barrier in the ’95-’97 was a heavier plastic-coated material, the one in my ’99 disintegrated when I removed it to work on the power window motor. The door speakers were changed too, there was a better plastic cone reinforced speaker for the first few years, then changed to a fiber cone the last couple. The two issues above can be a problem too. Lots of complaints about the windows, the switch and/or motor being a problem. And, the door speakers are known to blow fairly often.

 

I bought my ’95 in 2000, and the ’99 SA in ’05, the above are just a few things I have found over the years of ownership. I’m sure I have run into more; these are just what comes to mind right now.

 

ADD: Yes, what Pat mentioned about the steering column, that was an issue for all years. There is a “pin” that holds the tilt mechanism in place. I have seen them fall out; you just have to reinstall it to fix the problem. AND, I have seen the pot metal fitting break, the only fix for that is either replace the fitting, "not available", or replace the steering column.

The pot metal broke on mine so the entire column had to be replaced.  I located a used one in a junk yard out west and had it shipped.  What a PITA!!  The column came out of a car with a blue interior and my car had the taupe interior.  I swapped out all the internal parts so my column would match.  If anyone needs a blue steering wheel with an intact air bag, let me know.  I have heard that the column from an Aurora will fit but I never looked into it or know for sure that it is true.

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Also, when it comes to looking for parts, look at Row52.com.  Lists of U-pull-it type salvage yards.  You input year, make, and model.  You can get too specific.  I usually just type in "riviera" my zip code, and how far out i want the sesrch to go.

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Yep, I had a guy stop by to ask about one. He had bought the car with the wobble, some previous owner had made a "repair" on that one.

 

I can say the below is what NOT to do!

 

577718733_SteeringColunm016(1280x958).thumb.jpg.e127f6110e8881117773be1d306e760d.jpg

 

1719025385_SteeringColunm018(1280x958).thumb.jpg.ee139b5ea1013e7353fa9455d352394e.jpg

 

Not only did the piece of sheet metal they screwed into the column NOT hold, it cut into the ignition switch wires and almost started a fire! So those wires needed repaired too.

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4 minutes ago, Rivman said:

577718733_SteeringColunm016(1280x958).thumb.jpg.e127f6110e8881117773be1d306e760d.jpg

 

Aaack! In another part of the car hobby, we would call that "Bubba'd up."

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3 hours ago, Rivman said:

 

I wouldn’t discount the ’95 even though it does not have the OBD II, it is OBD 1.5. Yes, it is not as readable/programable as the OBD II, but it can be read with the right tool.

 

There are lots of them out there at a very reasonable price with over 41,000 of them produced, AND it is as good looking as the rest. The black Riv, not one of your color choices, pictured below is at 61K miles and obviously still looks great!

 

Publication1.thumb.jpg.9312458a33fbe19cc3afdd954adb86e4.jpg

 

I felt privileged when my ’95 was featured in the Riview a few years ago. I received an email from Bill Porter, the original designer of the last generation, commending me on what I had done to the car to make improvements on “HIS” design!

In Illinois anything pre OBD2 does not require emission testing. The state tests emissions by using the OBD2 diagnostic connector...something to consider if one lives in an area with emissions testing which can be a PITA and expensive

Tom Mooney

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http://rivperformance.editboard.com/t6471p225-faq-steering-column-slop-problems-replacement

 

After opening this link, go to page 10 of the thread and look at a post close to the bottom to see a nice repair to the wobbling column repair and some instructions on how to make it.

 

FAQ: Steering Column Slop, Problems & Replacement - Page 10 Rivdash_bracket_installed_zps4dd45d19

 

Looks a little better than the one in the previous post.  Eh?

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Posted (edited)
6 minutes ago, 1965rivgs said:

In Illinois anything pre OBD2 does not require emission testing. The state tests emissions by using the OBD2 diagnostic connector...something to consider if one lives in an area with emissions testing which can be a PITA and expensive.

 

In Pennsylvania, we're mileage based on emission testing, so no plus or minus to ODB II here.

 

I drove my 1985 Corvette like crazy one year, so they ran the test. It ran so clean, they thought there was something wrong with the system calibration. What I had done was had the old external cat assembly refitted with modern internals.

Edited by J3Studio (see edit history)
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1 hour ago, 1965rivgs said:

In Illinois anything pre OBD2 does not require emission testing. The state tests emissions by using the OBD2 diagnostic connector...something to consider if one lives in an area with emissions testing which can be a PITA and expensive

Tom Mooney

 

North Carolina uses the same cutoff.

 

The ’95 above and my ’93, pre-OBD II, require a “Safety Inspection” @ $13.60 a pop, and the ’99 SA, OBD II, requires the “Emissions Inspection” @ $30 a pop. I guess I’m lucky though, the 65GS and the 72GS do not require an inspection at all.

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2 hours ago, Rivman said:

 

North Carolina uses the same cutoff.

 

The ’95 above and my ’93, pre-OBD II, require a “Safety Inspection” @ $13.60 a pop, and the ’99 SA, OBD II, requires the “Emissions Inspection” @ $30 a pop. I guess I’m lucky though, the 65GS and the 72GS do not require an inspection at all.

Randall,

  They dont charge for inspections here...the expense I was referring to is what it sometimes takes to pass....cats, oxygen sensors, etc....

Tom

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Ya'll needs ta move to an agricultural state. No inspections of any kind in KS.  Buy the car, the DMV checks the VIN to see if it's been reported stolen.  Pay the registration fee and get your tags.  Pay personal property taxes each year when you renew your tags.  Then drive it till the wheels come off, however many years that might take.  The cows probably produce more methane gas than the cars do.

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OBD2 is a threat. The systems and components are easily understood, diagnosed, and repaired. The monitor readiness is a real problem and the internet is full of bad experiences. With no codes or broken parts the monitors can go to the "not ready" state and require an exacting "drive cycle " sequence to reset. Sometimes they just will not reset and you don't pass emissions tests.

 

In New York state readiness states must be set for all OBD2 cars regardless of years. OBD1 is OK. As you car ages as a collector car a low battery during storage or a power disconnect repair may leave you with a car that must be junked because the monitors will not reset, though nothing is indicated as failed.

 

Prudence may put the maximum year for a collector car at 1994, with 1972 and older the lowest risk for governmental meddling.

 

Don't let this stuff surprise you. Tampering IS a crime and no regulation is without a monetary penalty.

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58 minutes ago, 60FlatTop said:

OBD2 is a threat. The systems and components are easily understood, diagnosed, and repaired. The monitor readiness is a real problem and the internet is full of bad experiences. With no codes or broken parts the monitors can go to the "not ready" state and require an exacting "drive cycle " sequence to reset. Sometimes they just will not reset and you don't pass emissions tests.

 

In New York state readiness states must be set for all OBD2 cars regardless of years. OBD1 is OK. As you car ages as a collector car a low battery during storage or a power disconnect repair may leave you with a car that must be junked because the monitors will not reset, though nothing is indicated as failed.

 

Prudence may put the maximum year for a collector car at 1994, with 1972 and older the lowest risk for governmental meddling.

 

Don't let this stuff surprise you. Tampering IS a crime and no regulation is without a monetary penalty.

Bernie,

  While it is true the majority of the monitors must be set, with the evap monitor being the most finicky, Illinois uses a graduating scale based on model year. I dont remember the model year cutoffs but I can clear a check engine light with my scanner while in line at the testing station in my `96 (OBD2) Suburban and still pass because the state allows a greater number of monitors not be set as compared to later model vehicles. I seem to recall 2 out of 4 monitors on the `96 and 4 out of 6 on 2002 and newer? Or something similar....the evap is always the most stubborn but generally all the monitors do not need to be set for the vehicle to pass here in Illinois

Tom

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15 hours ago, 1965rivgs said:

Randall,

  They dont charge for inspections here...the expense I was referring to is what it sometimes takes to pass....cats, oxygen sensors, etc....

Tom

 

I know we shouldn’t hijack John’s thread, BUT I’ll add this …

 

It must be nice not to pay for inspections, I’m out over $100 every year for them here in NC.

 

NC does have a loophole in their inspection system though … If you have an OBD II vehicle that does not pass the emission test, and you try to get it fixed, but it will still not pass, you can get a waiver good for one year so you can get a plate on it.

 

I think it is around $200 max spent to get the waiver, so maybe after a few years at $200 a pop, the problem will be fixed?

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A question: I assume that eighth generation Rivieras have a Service Parts Identification Label. If so, where is it usually located?

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34 minutes ago, J3Studio said:

A question: I assume that eighth generation Rivieras have a Service Parts Identification Label. If so, where is it usually located?

 

Yes, they have the label.

 

On my '95 it is stuck on the inside of the right rear quarter panel, behind the trunk lining. On my '99 it is stuck on the underside of the spare tire cover.

 

I can't say for certain about the other years but I would guess in either of those locations. 

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16 hours ago, Rivman said:

On my '95 it is stuck on the inside of the right rear quarter panel, behind the trunk lining. On my '99 it is stuck on the underside of the spare tire cover.

 

I can't say for certain about the other years but I would guess in either of those locations. 

 

Wow—they hid them. Interesting …

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Another question: are there production numbers available for eighth generation exterior colors?

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Posted (edited)
On 7/2/2019 at 6:47 PM, J3Studio said:

Since some kind folks are already keeping an eye out for me, here's what I think I'm looking for:

  • 1996-1999 (I want ODB-II)...
  • ...Leather bucket seats (I know they were optional in 1996/1997 and standard in 1998/1999)

 

Mr. J3, you say you want leather bucket seats.  

They will be very easy to find.  My 1995 Riviera has

the standard cloth seats, split 60-40, with the gear-shift

on the steering column.  I find that that arrangement 

makes the interior seem more spacious.  And the cloth

doesn't show the wear, whereas leather creases.

So don't limit yourself to leather bucket seats!

 

Ever since the 1995-99 Rivieras were new, I have only seen

TWO other cars with the 60-40 front seat.  Mine has "mushroom"

(tan) cloth;  one I saw had light blue cloth;  and another I think

was tan leather.   Just how uncommon is the 60-40 arrangement?

Does anyone know in percentage terms?  Was that arrangement

available in leather too, or am I remembering incorrectly?

 

I got my car specifically because of its low mileage and those

seldom-seen seats.

Edited by John_S_in_Penna (see edit history)

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6 hours ago, J3Studio said:

Another question: are there production numbers available for eighth generation exterior colors?

 

I'm sure there are but, that is one that I can't answer for certain.

 

I could venture guesses, but that's all they would be. An example, at the 2008 meet in Galena, IL, there were 20 of the last generation cars, and mine was the only black one in the bunch.

 

Like I said, I'm sure the numbers exist, I'm just not sure where to located them.

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4 hours ago, John_S_in_Penna said:

 

Mr. J3, you say you want leather bucket seats.  

They will be very easy to find.  My 1995 Riviera has

the standard cloth seats, split 60-40, with the gear-shift

on the steering column.  I find that that arrangement 

makes the interior seem more spacious.  And the cloth

doesn't show the wear, whereas leather creases.

So don't limit yourself to leather bucket seats!

 

Ever since the 1995-99 Rivieras were new, I have only seen

TWO other cars with the 60-40 front seat.  Mine has "mushroom"

(tan) cloth;  one I saw had light blue cloth;  and another I think

was tan leather.   Just how uncommon is the 60-40 arrangement?

Does anyone know in percentage terms?  Was that arrangement

available in leather too, or am I remembering incorrectly?

 

I got my car specifically because of its low mileage and those

seldom-seen seats.

 

Your car sounds like an interesting one!

 

I'm sure they are very rare even though the cloth bench was standard the first few years of production, just not that popular. Most probably took the upgrade to buckets.

 

I have seen one cloth bench, I believe tan, and I have a blue leather bench on its way to me right now.

 

1702938093_AdriaticBlueMetallic002.5.thumb.JPG.e64a31c2da26a0c29ed0777fa7bf1c3a.JPG

 

I have been looking into these cars since 1996, and have only seen a couple, so that gives you an idea of how rare they are.

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The cloth bench seat is rare for sure.  Mine had leather buckets which were very comfortable.  The only criticism I have is that the drivers seat leather got baggy looking by 35,000 miles although the rest of the interior was fine.

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