Engine Turbo... Yes or No?

Discussion in '2.3L (N/A & Turbo) Tech' started by Mr67Stang, Apr 1, 2013.

  1. Mr67Stang

    Mr67Stang Active Member

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    I have a 1988 LX 2.3, 5 speed car. I have actually been trying to sell it but I am either asking too much or my local community is too cheep. I prefer te later. Anyway, I was cruising CraigsList today and found a guy selling the Turbo from a 2.3 TurboChicken for $200. Pic's attached. If I bolt this thing to my 2.3 will it do anything? Do I have to get the computer as well? Wiring and plumbing? Most important, what should I look at on the unit to ensure I am not buying scrap metal? I have zero experience with turbos.

    I apreciate any help and, now I am going to do some searching/reading in other threads.
     

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  2. 91TwighlightGT

    91TwighlightGT Active Member

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    A turbo swap isn't extremely difficult, but most would recommend against putting a turbo on your N/A 2.3L. The main difference is the pistons, and unfortunately the N/A 2.3L cars have weak cast pistons that won't hold up under boost. The turbo engines have nice forged pistons that can take a lot of power.

    Although I don't think it is a huge problem by itself, the higher compression ratio on the N/A motor combined with the weak pistons is a recipe for catastrophic failure.

    If you decide to go the turbo route, you should either rebuild your engine with quality pistons and rods, or swap in a used turbo engine. Wiring and modifications are few and well documented on this site and many others with a little bit of searching.
     
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  3. Mr67Stang

    Mr67Stang Active Member

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    Yes, between the difference in the engine and the fact this guy is not offering the computer or the VAM with the package tells me, he replaced a worn out turbo and is now trying to sell scrap metal as opposed to a conversion kit.
     
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  4. KhanTyranitar

    KhanTyranitar Member

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    You basically need the whole turbo motor to get all the parts you need cost effectively. Ordering all the part individually is expensive.

    You need:
    the turbo pistons
    the turbo valves
    the turbo injectors
    a higher flow fuel pump
    a larger MAF
    a way to tune

    if you use the turbo computer and VAM you don't need the maf or a way to tune, but you do have to make a few minor mods to the harness.

    There are plenty of write ups on the process.
     
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