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  1. #1

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    3rd gem cams and some questions

    I ordered two stage 2 camshafts from: http://www.americancustomcam.com/
    for my 2002 SL2. Joe @ American Custom Cams was very knowledgeable and helpful! There is a lot of data on gen 2 cams posted here, but I didn't see much for gen 3 (which uses a roller-rocker design and a different camshaft). When I get the cams from Joe, I'll post the specifications here so they can be added to the library. Joe found cores for $100 and the grind was $225.

    When I replace the camshafts, I plan on also replacing the cam bearings. I'd be delighted to hear any other advice from members that have swapped cams before.

    I hate to ask this next question which has been covered here many times, but I'm still confused about what my tuning options are for my gen 3 SL2. I understand the best options are Electromotive and Megasquirt, but those options are too much work for me, and I'm looking for something more simple. It appears to me, that I could adjust air/fuel with Apexi's SAFC product:
    http://www.scottjsousa.com/tsn/articles/SAFCInstall.htm

    or their new product:
    https://www.summitracing.com/parts/apx-401-a018

    I've also read that the Motorola PCM on the gen 3 vehicles has been hacked/cracked - but I don't understand what that means. Does it mean there is a product that I can buy to remap the air/fuel through the OBD II port? If so, what is this product? Or - does it just mean some super-smart guy figured out how to manually re-program the PCM (again, that sounds too hard for me). Please provide any guidance you may have on tuning options for a guy with limited skills.

  2. #2
    6S Resident Hasselhoff. alexofnazareth's Avatar
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    There aren't any cam bearings, only the aluminum bearing surface in the head/cam cap. Plastigauge it if you feel like you need to. I've never had issues with putting a different set of cams into the same head.

    Start by tuning with the SAFC II. Don't consider Megasquirt until you understand more about it and what an undertaking it is or can become.
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    than do not turbo your car !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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  3. #3

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    Thank you! I'm surprised there aren't cam bearings - it will be interesting to see what that looks like.

  4. #4
    6S Resident Hasselhoff. alexofnazareth's Avatar
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    Let us know if you need instruction on how to swap cams out. Most of us made a tool out of a 2x4 and clamp the cam gears in place to avoid messing with the timing chain slack [See: Tensioner]
    Quote Originally Posted by Donnie View Post
    I see a failboat, steaming full speed on an ocean of failsauce into a barrier reef of lol.
    Quote Originally Posted by BC. Livewire View Post
    if you hate seeing money going down the drane

    than do not turbo your car !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Sixthsphere: Home of newbs, cunts, and Shane Jackson.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by alexofnazareth View Post
    Let us know if you need instruction on how to swap cams out. Most of us made a tool out of a 2x4 and clamp the cam gears in place to avoid messing with the timing chain slack [See: Tensioner]
    what amazing tool is this? ill be searching but another explanation cant hurt.
    1998 SC2 - Blue - Turbo Project
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  6. #6

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    I installed the stage 2 cams from American Custom Cam on my 3rd Gen SL2. Specifications (measured at .050) are:
    INTAKE: 260 duration; 400 lift
    EXHAUST: 250 duration; 375 lift

    Didn't have to worry about the timing chain tensioner because I decided to buy a timing chain kit and replace the 16 year old chain, guides, sprockets, etc. My car does have a bit more pep now, but it's only noticeable at 4000+ rpms.

  7. #7
    Approved Vendor ZombieSatty's Avatar
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    Sounds about right.

    Do you have any way of tuning?
    It's not my fault, blame the radiation.

  8. #8

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    @ZombbieSatty, I don't have the capability to tune right now. I'm limited by both my skills and the fact that this is my daily driver. So, MS and Electromotive are not realistic options for me right now. Since I'm fortunate enough to have a job for which I'm dramatically overpaid, money isn't an issue. I've been thinking about buying an SAFC-2 off of ebay or even buying their new product to do some air/fuel fix tuning, but haven't gotten around to it yet. I'd certainly be interested in any recommendations or insight that you could provide on this subject - potential benefit and recommendations for how to achieve it? Thank you.

  9. #9
    Approved Vendor ZombieSatty's Avatar
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    The Saturn tuner community is kinda stuck in 2000, lol. Its pretty much SAFC 1/2 or megasquirt around here. There are a few runningnew fangled Electromotive thingies though.

    A SAFC + wideband O2 sensor will get you some bennifit (say 60%? of possible gains? You will be able to actually feel that cam pull up top at least. It can be installed in an evening, and tuned with a few pulls on highway/backroads. Plus you won't lose the ease of the stock OBD2 system diagnostics.
    It's not my fault, blame the radiation.

  10. #10
    Resident Electromotive Expert importsdontlikeme's Avatar
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    3rd gem cams and some questions

    I can help if you want to go the Electromotive route. I can help you with the base tune and how to wire it all etc. etc. however, depending on your emissions requirements in the state that you live and you might not pass.

    I am a vendor for Electromotive so anything you need I can provide


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
    Last edited by importsdontlikeme; 03-29-2018 at 10:16 AM.

    Interested in a solid engine management system? Ask me about Electromotive engine management.

  11. #11

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    Thank you both for the help/advice and the offer on the Electromotive product tutoring. Emissions are not an issue for me here in Florida, and I already deleted the cat and secondary air injection when I put on the header - so, I'm way past worrying about that. I'll take a look at the Electromotive documentation to see if it looks like something I could do, if not, I'll probably go the SAFC route.

    Oh, on a different subject, I'm still running the stock throttle body. My understanding is that the GEO Storm swap won't work for my 3rd gen car (I have the strange TB that sucks from the top). I haven't found any straightforward TB mods on this site yet - if you are aware of any, please point me to them.
    Thanks again for all your help!

  12. #12
    HNIC SC2Sick's Avatar
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    I actually have a cam tool I bought a while back, once @dynonacht gets it back to me I can send you pictures.
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  13. #13

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    That's interesting. I stopped by my local former Saturn dealer (which is now a Volvo dealer) to ask them about the cam swap and if I needed to know anything special. The service manager told me that there was "a special tool to keep the chain from moving" that they used to have when they were Saturn, but he no longer had one. Is this the same tool you're referring to @SC2Sick?

  14. #14
    HNIC SC2Sick's Avatar
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    Mine was made by somebody and I saw it for sale and bought it. I bought a couple other specialty tools at the same time for valve and seal replacement.

    https://sixthsphere.com/showthread.p...-Removal/page3

    Here's a pictorial on how to do it without the tool. I've done it this way successfully as well before I got my hands on the tool.
    Sixthsphere.com Owner
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  15. #15
    6S Moderator S.Bretz's Avatar
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    There was a tool. but its not hard to remove the whole over and reseal it.
    If you want to make a tool, you can make a couple with 2x4's.
    -6S Resident Mechanical Forensics member #001.
    1995 SC2 Turbo 3.6L DOHC, 6sp manual, Ford 8.8 rearend running on MS3x.
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