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GL-10 resurrection


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#1 mr sarcastic

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 03:58 PM

I am the proud new owner of my dream Subaru, a GL-10. It's an 87 with 115k, originally owned by an elderly couple (Clarence and Elinore). Picked it up for $500, and at that price it's fair to say it has some issues. The body is fair for being a New England car, it was "rusty jones" treated back when it was new, I found the paperwork. Still has some rust on the lower rear quarters. The 4 speed auto is bad, well, the diff leaked dry and now it makes a massive racket, but still drives. The engine starts right up, revs nice, sounds great, no CEL. But, its got a coolant leak leaving antifreeze on the top of the engine.

So, plans are to swap in the DR 5 speed from my 86 GL, diagnose the coolant leak, fix the rust, then use it mostly to get to the mountains in snow storms next winter. I've done some research and have come across a bit of info about the lack of cooling from the stock system, head gasket issues, ect. My plans aren't to make a beast of this car, I just want it to run as its supposed to.
Any extra maintenance i should do this summer to keep the reliability up? What should I be keeping from my donor car aside from the transmission stuff? Any parts in particular that are known to fail or hard to get? Would the long block from my 86 work in my ea82t if something catastrophic would happen?

#2 Crazyeights

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 05:49 PM

I would start by going through the entire cooling system with a fine tooth comb. Replace ALL the hoses, do the head gaskets if they are leaking, new water pump and dealer thermostat if the history is unknown. Also make sure the radiator isn't plugged up with deposits and the cooling fans are working properly.

 

Lastly, congrats! Would you care to share a few pics?


Edited by Crazyeights, 08 May 2013 - 05:50 PM.


#3 mr sarcastic

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 06:30 PM

I do plan on taking a few pics here in the next couple days, ill upload them when I do. And I have all the records, but I plan on doing the thermostat and pump anyway. Maybe even the radiator upgrade.

#4 NorthWet

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 06:44 PM

An 87 is unlikely to have a 4-speed auto... AFAIK, these became available in 88; almost certainly has a 3-sped auto.  It might also be useful to confirm that your engine has a turbo;  GL10 is more of an option designation than telling how the car is equipped.



#5 AKghandi

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 06:47 PM

I have the car you want lol, 87 gl-10 turbo with a dual range. the hose that's leaving coolant on the head is a small hose on the left side of the intake manifold, to the throttle body. I had the same problem.

 

here's my thread, http://www.ultimates...87-gl-10/page-5



#6 mr sarcastic

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 07:06 PM

I'll look into that hose. Did your's come with the dual range 5 speed?

And yes it definitely has a turbo, not only does it say it on both sides of the car, the rear hatch, and the original window sticker, I can hear it when driving it. But your right about the tranny, the owners manual is saying its a 3 speed. I've only had it up to 30ish so I really didn't notice how many it had while driving.

#7 mr sarcastic

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 07:10 PM

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#8 NorthWet

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 09:12 PM

There are several hoses that could be providing the leak, plus the intake manifold gaskets, gaskets on the manifold coolant crossover pipe, and the t-stat housing.  The common places on your engine are a little (approx. 1/8"ID) hose that runs from the t-stat housing to the top-front of the block, and the turbo coolant hose that runs from the top of the turbo center-section to the t-stat area.  This latter one gets super-hot water running through it after engine shutdown, and should be checked regularly for embrittlement and/or cracking. (I have had one literally crumble into a dozen pieces when I tried to remove it.)

 

Are sure that the front ring-and-pinion/differential are shot?  Could the noise be something else?

 

Oh, and you probably shouldn't be able to hear your turbo while driving...


Edited by NorthWet, 08 May 2013 - 09:12 PM.


#9 MilesFox

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 09:34 PM

An 87 is unlikely to have a 4-speed auto... AFAIK, these became available in 88; almost certainly has a 3-sped auto.  It might also be useful to confirm that your engine has a turbo;  GL10 is more of an option designation than telling how the car is equipped.

87 was stamped out for the 4eat with the wider trans tunnel. Giveaway clues would be D, 3,2,1 and a pmanual button on the shifter for a 4eat



#10 AKghandi

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 09:38 PM

I'll look into that hose. Did your's come with the dual range 5 speed?

And yes it definitely has a turbo, not only does it say it on both sides of the car, the rear hatch, and the original window sticker, I can hear it when driving it. But your right about the tranny, the owners manual is saying its a 3 speed. I've only had it up to 30ish so I really didn't notice how many it had while driving.

nope, mine was a push button 5 speed, and was swapped to a dual range.



#11 NorthWet

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Posted 08 May 2013 - 09:40 PM

87 was stamped out for the 4eat with the wider trans tunnel...

I had thought that the larger tunnel came out in 88.  Wouldn't be the first time I was mistaken...



#12 mr sarcastic

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 05:42 AM

 
Are sure that the front ring-and-pinion/differential are shot?  Could the noise be something else?
 
Oh, and you probably shouldn't be able to hear your turbo while driving...


The diff was diagnosed by the PO's shop, the kid (clerance and 's grandson) ran it out of diff fluid. He said it made a bang, the shop added fluid and it still runs, now noisy. I guess it could be something else, but I'm 99% sure its in the tranny. It's speed related, not rpm. As long as it's not coming from the engine I don't care, all the auto stuff is coming out.
And I don't hear the turbo per say, but you can hear the diverter valve. He put an autozone cone filter on it after the air flow sensor, so maybe it's louder cause of that.

#13 AKghandi

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 07:05 AM

wait... what??? filter after the air flow sensor?As in between the maf and turbo?if so, fix that. with a quickness.. put it back to stock if you can but that is a no-no. one small piece of debris hits the MAF wire and you're going to have a bad day.. stock air cleaner setups on these are just fine.



#14 NorthWet

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 08:29 AM

I think the "after" is relative... especially since "cone filter" was typed.

 

There are no diverter valves on a stock EA82T engine.  No need for one.  If someone put on a simple dump valve (BOV), then it will mess up the mixture due to dumping metered air. 



#15 mr sarcastic

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 12:08 PM

Ya, in the dirrection of air flow it's before the MAF. My mind works funky sometimes when discribing things. And I'm sure doesn't have a BOV, I just assumed it had a diverter. I've never seen a turbo setup that doesn't have a way to release boost when you come off throttle. Interesting, I'll need to dig into it and see what's up.

#16 NorthWet

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 01:37 PM

The popular view is that the stock pressure and flow are not great enough to warrant/benefit-from a BOV/BPV.

 

What kind of sound are you hearing?  There are some common issues that could make odd noises.



#17 mr sarcastic

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 01:54 PM

It's essentially a "whoosh" when you let off the gas. Nothing loud, I was driving slow with the radio off and the windows down so I could really listen to the car. Trying to see if there was any old noises, rattles, ect.

Now getting back to the diff noise, does the story not make sense to any of you? He saying it was run dry, made a bang, refilled with fluid, and was still driveable, just noisy. I heard the noise, it's a grinding noise that got worse with speed. I've never heard of someone blowing or seizing a diff and it still functions..... Is this possible with these units?

#18 NorthWet

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 03:19 PM

The story makes plenty of sense.  Nothing special about the differentials; they do break, and they would not like being run dry..  If it wasn't a tooth snapping off of either the ring or pinion gear then it might not be too scary sounding to drive.  If your set on a 5-speed swap, just do it and don't look back.  But it is a bit of work if the only thing that you are bothered by is a bad tranny.

 

The only reason I asked about being sure is that a lot of non-Subaru mechanics mis-diagnose problems.

 

Cheers!



#19 NorthWet

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 03:25 PM

It's essentially a "whoosh" when you let off the gas. Nothing loud, I was driving slow with the radio off and the windows down so I could really listen to the car...

The turbo is not a very efficient one, and doesn't tend to go positive on the boost until 3k RPM or so, and doesn't hit its max 7-ish psi until much higher RPM.  Unlikely to hear any proper turbo flow noises while driving slow.  Maybe the cooling fan cycling?  Or, might be an exhaust leak?  (The uppipe tends to crack at the turbine inlet flange, but this is usually noticeable under the hood at idle.)



#20 mr sarcastic

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 03:57 PM

I would say 90% of my mechanic experience is with vw/Audi. I've done 4 auto to manual swaps, 3 vw's and 1 Audi. I can't imagine this car being as much of a bear as the A6 was. It took me some time, but i got done and we're still driving it. It fought me at every turn though, Audi requires so many special tools and there is zero room to work under the hood. I'm not saying this is gonna be easy, but as long as I'm not using a mirror to find half the bolts I need to remove, I'll be happy. And I'm super psyched I don't need to hook a computer to it to recode the ecu and get it to turn on.

#21 AKghandi

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 04:17 PM

You sir, are going to GREATLY enjoy working on subaru's.. I've worked on audi's before and they are a nightmare. you are going to have to simplify your thinking a little bit but this should be a breeze.

 

these cars are like legos. just find the parts you and and put them on.


Edited by AKghandi, 09 May 2013 - 04:18 PM.


#22 NorthWet

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Posted 10 May 2013 - 01:39 AM

One of the things I enjoy about the Subarus is their similarity to LEGOs:  Parts tend to be mix and match.  Usually plenty of room to get at stuff (though you are likely to find the bellhousing nut on the engine's left side difficult to get at due to the tranny cooler lines being in the way... but you already have a plan to rectify that).  As long as you have that donor car, the swap should be relatively easy.

 

Speaking of donor car, I posted in your parts thread about you hanging on to the rear diff, as the GL10's diff is a 3.7 ratio and the 5-speed will be a 3.9.



#23 mr sarcastic

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Posted 10 May 2013 - 05:05 AM

Good to know. I was planning on keeping the rear diff and all the axles from the donor car just in case.

#24 NorthWet

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Posted 10 May 2013 - 08:25 AM

Axles should be interchangeable between the two cars. Turbo 5-speeds and 4-speed automatics use a different inner spline count on the front; all other axles share same fitment.

 

Still, it is nice to have spare axles.



#25 scoobiedubie

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Posted 10 May 2013 - 11:02 AM

One of the things I enjoy about the Subarus is their similarity to LEGOs:  Parts tend to be mix and match.  Usually plenty of room to get at stuff (though you are likely to find the bellhousing nut on the engine's left side difficult to get at due to the tranny cooler lines being in the way... but you already have a plan to rectify that).  As long as you have that donor car, the swap should be relatively easy.

 

Speaking of donor car, I posted in your parts thread about you hanging on to the rear diff, as the GL10's diff is a 3.7 ratio and the 5-speed will be a 3.9.

Doesn't it depend where the 5-speed came from?  For instance, I have a 3.7 ratio, 5 speed stick with push button 4wd, and LSD, on my 86 GL10 turbo.  Did the 5 speed stick option come on a non-turbo ea82?






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