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This section is dedicated to the rebuild of our 1986 GMC Jimmy
The previous owner had the engine/tranny rebuilt, but the crank broke in the 2.8L

I just wanted to take the time now and give some good strong advice if you plan on doing the kind of swap that I did. First of all, it's good if you have all of your original 2.8L setup (oil pan, intake, carburator/TBI, exhaust manifold, dip stick, motor mounts, brackets, timing cover, water pump, pully's, etc). If you decide to buy a used 3.4L engine, don't buy from anyone else but TA Creations. They're quick and offer exceptional services. I've called my local salvages, to find out that they were nothing but a joke. These guys at TA Creations are professionals, and are very reasonable on prices/warranty. I got a complete engine from a 1994 Camaro (even down to the manifolds), wraped up tight in plastic on a crate. They sent an unbalanced flexplate for my auto tranny (for 5 speeds you'll have to unbalance your existing one) which is REQUIRED. Also, I do recommend you using their harmonic balancer. If it won't work with your setup, take it down to a shop and have it balanced accordingly to the balancer you got from the 94 camaro. We spent more time swapping over my old parts than putting the engine in. But I will tell you that you'll be happy. I sure am. I also want to extend a thanks to Micky Flynn. I enjoyed the conversation with him, and appreciate his helpful advice.

09/06/2002 - Up to this date, Karen and I have already pulled the old 2.8L out and broke it down. I am in the process of ordering a 3.4L from TA Creations. I found a site that shows how to do this conversion. You can see his notes here. He also listed a mods2 link that list where I can get aftermarket items for this truck and engine. With the Jimmy being fuel injected and serpentine belt, all we are suppose to do is remove the distributor cap, insert the distributor, possibly change the oil pan, put my intake with fuel injection system on, install all brackets, pully's etc. and hook everything up. It is suppose to be a near direct swap of engines. Although, this engine is suppose to have 119K miles on it, this is better than nothing. If I need to rebuild it, it won't be as expensive as trying to convert a 2.8L. I'll try and get some pics of the old Jimmy as is without the engine. Then we will include pictures as we go. Be back hopefully soon.

09/10/2002 - Here are the pics I took today. It looks a little rough, but I think it will turn out good. Also, I went ahead and got pictures of my German Shepherd and my oldest 5 year old, Kaylin.

09/16/2002 - We got started saturday morning (09/14/2002), and I steam cleaned the engine compartment, and the whole body (minus the undercarriage). Joel and I looked at the 3.4L and noticed that the water pump shaft was too short for my pully system. The timing cover was different too. So we wound up using my timing cover, water pump, oil pan, and intake system. Also, the oil pressure switch was a different setup. I had to get a larger adapter to hook up my oil pressure switches. After we installed the intake, timing cover, water pump, and oil pan, we placed the engine in the Jimmy and placed 3 bolts to the tranny. I went ahead and bolted the motor mounts. We'll finish the other tranny bolts tonight along with the transmission brackets and mounts. Now all we have to do is start hooking up all the brackets, pumps, hoses, radiator, and air condition condenser. I've already got the V-belt, but there are two other belts that hook up the air conditioner and power steering. I'm also getting all the fluids and filters for it tonight too. We're going to try and flush any fuel left in the tank, and put fresh gas in too. I'm hoping to have it started tonight. I'll be back later to give a report and some pics.
09/17/2002 - Well, we didn't get alot done last night. We hooked up the torque converter, bolted the other tranny bolts, hooked up the starter, and started hooking up all the wires back to the engine. Joel and I did start on hooking up the brackets for the pumps. I spent 30 minutes just hooking up the coil bracket to the back of the passenger side head. That was a pain to get to, since the engine was already installed. Well, besides hoses, pumps and radiators, we'll get started again on it tonight. I'll be back later with an update.
09/18/2002 - We heard it run for a little last night. The gas was a little old, but we're getting some fresh gas tonight. Joel stabbed the distributor, hooked up the fuel line and shot some starting fluid in it. It fired a couple times, then ran off the old gas that was in the truck. Boy was I amazed. Anyway, Joel really didn't want to spend alot of time hooking things up, he wanted to hear it run (so did i), so we'll be back out tonight trying to hook up the exhaust, pully's (again), radiator, and other small items. We're slowly getting it back together. Keep in mind, we're only working on it 1-2 hours a night, and that's with limited lights. I did carry my 1500 watt standup lights to help though. I'll be back tomorrow with another update. By the way, it's hard to get pic's at night, so I'll do the best I can later with pics.

Just to give you an idea of horsepower differences between the 3.4L and the 4.3L, I compiled this information off S-Truck FAQ Page and Micky Flynn's 3.4L Spec page.

Engine Displacement
Bore/Stroke in.
Fuel System Type
Net Horsepower @RPM
Net Torque @RPM(ft. lbs.)
Compression Ratio

* = Now you see what the preferred engine is. Sure you can use a 4.3, but why spend the extra money into the tranny, exhaust, manifolds, and all coversions to put a 4.3L in when you get the nearly the same power with your existing setup.

Oh well, I still may have to upgrade my 2.8L TBI 33 lb/hr injectors to a 4.3L TBI 45 lb/hr injectors. See the notes here. It was noted that the 3.4L will run lean under the 2.8L stock condtions. I can always goto a junk yard and get some injectors later. We're trying to get a bumper for this thing at the moment. Anyway, as I said, we'll be back to work on it again tonight.

09/19/2002 - Last night, we hooked up everything else to the engine. We started it and checked for leaks or any other problems. Didn't find a thing wrong. I put it in Reverse to take it out for a test drive, then all of the dies. I couldn't believe it. After all of the work, now it won't start. We diagnosed the problem down the the injectors. We're getting fuel/spark, but the injectors don't seem to pulse. It's either the computer, or something related to the distributor or iginition module. Anyway, we're going to tackle it again tonight. I did get some pics, and hopefully have them here within the next few days.
09/20/2002 - We took a break last night. We're exhausted after working on it at nights. Joel had Jesse take a look at it while we are at work, and he said the injectors are pulsing, and everything electrical is fine. Joel plans on pulling the tank this weekend, to see if the pump screen is clogged, or if I need another fuel pump. Anyway, I'll be back later with an update.
09/22/2002 - Joel fixed it. The rubber pickup hose on the fuel pump had split and come off. Joel replaced it, cleaned out the tank, and it started great. He finished it yesterday. Karen and I put the hood back on and drove it home today. WOW !!! I love the power of this engine. It's running smooth, no vibrations, no leaks, no overheating and definitely doesn't seem to have any problems. We are still going to put the 4.3L 45 lb/hr injectors in later. Today, I noticed that the heater didn't work. I fixed the connection and found a clogged vacuum line to the vent system of the truck. Now all vents and heat work fine. We'll get a new drier canister for the aircondition later, and charge it. Now all we have to do is start fixin up the body. Karen has already cleaned out the back. I'll put some more vinyl dye on the interior later. I took some pics. They're both from the garage, and when we brought it home. Man I love this engine ! 3.4L Rocks!!!

09/30/2002 - This weekend we spent alot of money toward the Jimmy. We purchased a new Aircondition Accumulater, Freeze 12 coolant, R12 oil, fan motor, A/C pressure switch, S10 Blazer 4x4 wheels, windshield wiper blades, and new air filter. I might have left out a few items, but the air did work. I might have to get one more can of freeze 12, but overall, it cools great. The airconditioner compressor has been making noises, so I might have to replace it before it's over with. Karen went down to Carl's today and purchased the bumper and 4.3L injectors. Now I have to get the TBI kit and install them. We plan on sand blasting some of the rusted areas and start filling rust holes. I want to have it prepared for paint very soon. Once it's painted, we'll get some tires on it, then start using it. Also, Karen registered the Jimmy today. I'll put insurance on it after it's painted. I'll be back probably tomorrow with an update.
10/01/2002 - I tore down my old TBI to find out that the injector horn I got from the junkyard would have bolted right up to my throttle body. Talk about something to get you frustrated. Anyway, Karen is suppose to goto the Dickson Auto Parts (Autozone/Advance doesn't carry a TBI rebuild kit) and pick up the rebuild kit. I ask Jeff Eleazer to put it back together and test it. I want it to work before I put it back on. Once this is done we plan on sand blasting the truck sometime soon. I don't think we'll have the money for the paint yet, but when I do, I'll get some good tires for it too. Until next time.
10/07/2002 - Karen and I got the TBI back on. Wow, what a difference. This thing runs better than with the 33 lb/hr injectors. The "Check Engine" light comes on now, but I can overlook that. I'll check it out later. We got the bumper on, but the front end doesn't have the hookups. I just hung it with two bolts. I also started fiberglassing and putting bondo in the holes. I'll get it sanded within the next few days. I also sand blasted some of the rust too. Karen and I are thinking about swapping the whole door on the passenger side, since it's dented really bad. We're probably going to get a used door and scrap our old door. I should be ready to paint the truck within the next week or so, so I'll be back with an update.
10/09/2002 - We got the title in yesterday. I finished bondoing where needed and plan on sanding it within the next few days. I've had to put some overtime at the beginning of the week, so I really haven't had alot of time to work on it. I'm hoping to get the doors this weekend. If not, I'm still planning on sanding on it. We'll shoot some primer on parts of the truck. I'll get some pics and put them up here soon.
10/14/2002 - The bondo is done. I didn't do the best job, but it looks better than a bunch of rust holes. I've decided to just paint it Eurothane white. I can get it for around $100 locally. Once it's painted, we found the tires we want to use on it. If I can't find tires cheaper than what I found at Wal-mart, then we plan on buying a brand called liberators. I might be wrong with the name, but Glenn has had these tires before and said they hold up great. I'll try and get some pics again soon before and after we paint it. I'm suppose to work some overtime tonight (at home) and tomorrow (at work), so it might be a while before I can get back.
10/18/2002 - Okay, I got the paint. It's Acrylic Eurothane White. But I can't paint it this weekend. I'm painting Richard's Mustang GT (by brother's). He chose two tone at first, but he's changed his mind a couple of times. I picked out a dark metallic blue that I think he'll like. I'll try and get some pics of this weekends sanding, masking and painting of his car.
12/05/2002 - I know it's been a while, but we had transmission problems. It seems there was trash in the fuild. I first changed it, then Jeff cleaned out the pressure body. It did good over the Thanksgiving holiday, but started shifting hard again. You would have to run the engine to a high RPM before it would finally shift. Anyway, Jeff put a in-line filter going to the transmission cooler. He disconnected the throttle pressure cable to let the tranny fluid run at high pressure. That cleaned out any trash coming from the torque converter. It seems that even though I changed the fluid a couple of times, there was trash still in the torque converter. Jeff cleaned the in-line filter once, and put it back on. He then hooked back up the throttle pressure cable and it fixed the problem. I drove it into work today. It still seems to have a hard time during lockup of the torque converter sometimes at around 45 mph. But I'm still happy with it. I plan on changing the front rotors so that I can buy matching wheels. Somebody changed out the rear-end, so my bolt pattern for my back wheels don't match my front. Once I replace the front rotors, then I'll buy 3 more wheels to go on the front. I'll put my good tires on them, then use the third wheel as a spare. Anyway, gotta fix the headliner, exhaust and put a good radio in it. But I'm VERY happy with this truck. Here are some pics I took when I painted it. I'll be getting some more pictures later. But here they are....

12/09/2002 - I disabled the torque converter lockup by removing a wire harness on the driver side of the tranny. When I drove it, overdrive seems to slip a little, but you have to be doing about 60 MPH before it really kicks in. I'll leave it that way for a while, and change the tranny fluid. Hopefully that will clear up the problem for now. I change the torque converter out for $85 plus $125 in labor. Jeff tends to think that the trash is from the torque converter clutches being worn or something. I'll check back later with a status.
12/11/2002 - I drove it for the past two days, and it seems to shutter in drive and overdrive. I called Jeff and he said the tranny will have to be rebuilt. I won't be able to do that until after January. We'll continue to drive it though. Anyway, I'll be back later with updates.
01/02/2003 - Well it's the new year, and I still won't be able to get the tranny rebuilt or the headliner fixed until sometime later. We have another project coming into the picture that takes a higher priority. The Jimmy is still good enough to drive for now. Again, I'll be back later with updates.
04/13/2005 - HA HA! Thought I wouldn't update anything on this page anymore didn't ya! Well, we got the tranny rebuilt and found out that the fuel filter was T R A S H E D! We got both repaired and the Jimmy runs GREAT! It's better than ever before! I also replaced the windshield which makes driving easier during rain and at night. We still have a tranny leak somwhere, but I'll keep adding fluid until we find out why it's blowing fluid out every once in a while (like going out the overflow or dipstick tube). But I use this truck for monkeying around now, and especially for hunting. I love it! But now I'm going have to get a tow hitch because I have a 4 wheeler now and would like to haul it along with a boat sometime. This truck is awesome!
01/25/2006 - Well, I decided to break down and sell the Jimmy. Yeah, I know, after all this hard work, why did I sell it? Well, the truck hasn't been used in a while, and I decided some time ago, that I needed to finish up some of my projects. Karen needs a smaller vehicle just to kick around. The good news is that, a fella from Florida name Will White purchased my truck on ebay so he can convert it to a rod truck. You can see what he's doing here. Will said he will keep me posted on the progress of the conversion. It's an awesome setup with that 3.4L and I hope many others will do what I set out to do in this engine conversion. If given the option to do this 2.8L to 3.4L over having a 4.3L truck, I'd do the 3.4L in a heartbeat. Hopefully, Will can send me some pics or some kind of web site on his progress.

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Copyright 2002 ã Kelly Davidson.