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Thread: 1985 Buick LeSabre LTD Collector's Edition sedan

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    Talking 1985 Buick LeSabre LTD Collector's Edition sedan

    Hi all! I registered to share and discuss the car in the title. While not everyone's idea of a dream vehicle, I love these, and have owned a few over the years. I swear, most modern cars are built for midgets! Even being 6'2", the big-body GM RWD's feel roomy. 1985 was their last production year, so it had all the luxuries. I was forced to get rid of each one for various reasons- rotted frame, front end collision (evil deer), etc- never for mechanical reasons, these things are hard to kill. But I've finally found my perfect permanent keeper! I pick this car up in 1 week, six days:



    It has all the features I liked of my various earlier cars- power everything, cruise, A/C (freshly topped off R12, thank you very much), rear defrost, the great deep burgundy in & out color, exterior side-lights, the rear-facing blinker indicators...

    Best of all, it's in wonderful condition. It was kept in a heated garage, reportedly has never seen a winter, and accordingly has low mileage. The bumper fillers aren't even cracked. The inside looks just as good as the outside, and everything Just Works.

    Because I know you'll ask, the price was $2500. I think it's a steal. I may be one of the only people on earth who think these cars look beautiful just the way they are (without lowering, raising, adding 22" wheels, spinners, spoilers, hydraulics, whatever), and everyday I'm saddened as I see more of these cars destroyed like that. This one's as original as they get; I'll make sure it stays that way

    Of course it comes with the Collector's Edition leather booklet and engraved key set, though I already have my own of each... as well as the postcards and promotional license plate. Speaking of which, I just bought a chromed stainless steel license plate cover with "BUICK" embossed on it, and plan to get the custom plate LESABRE. Is all this overboard for an 80's sedan? Maybe. But it's already 25 years old, and some people seem to think they're worth more. If I keep mine in excellent shape, maybe in ten or twenty years you'll see me going to car shows.

    My only regrets are that I live in a two license plate state, so can only stick the promo plate in the back window- and that I can't track down an original Delco CD player like this to replace the AM/FM/Cassette (refuse to install aftermarket junk). If anyone can suggest solutions to these, I'll be in heaven! Some bigger pics are here, here and here. Thanks for letting me rant about my Buick!

  2. #2
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    Welcome to the site . You have a great car ...have fun and drive it .
    John
    Guyopel
    The early bird gets the worm but the second mouse always gets the cheese.

  3. #3
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    Nice find, and it is a very handsome car. Enjoy.
    Ted Nagel
    (6)65 Wildcats; 65 Riviera; 65 Special Wagon; 65 GS; 65 Skylark; 67 Wildcat; 67 California GS; (2)68 GS400; 69 GS 350; 70 GS Stage 1; Wanted: time to fix 'em

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    I've got the car! It's in even better condition than I hoped. I swear it looks like it's about five years old maximum, not a quarter of a century.

    I'm hoping someone here can give some expert advice on it mechanically. Here's the symptoms:


    1. It starts up and idles fine, but drive it immediately and stop quick (say, at a stop sign), it stalls out. It will restart and drive just fine. After running for a little while, this behavior stops. Coming to a very very slow stop gets around it; previous owner said you can also drop it into neutral when stopping to avoid this problem, though I haven't tested that.

    2. When going very slowly, sometimes the engine sort of "chug-chugs" (sorry, not very technical!); almost like it isn't getting enough fuel. I believe that this is only while giving it gas, not coasting. Chugging stops once a decent speed is reached, or if you let off the gas.

    3. When trying to accelerate up an incline, often the check engine light will come on. The light turns off immediately once over the hill, or if you let off the gas, or if you stomp the gas and kick in the Overdrive. CE light does not come on for small inclines or with a 'running start.'

    4. When trying to accelerate quickly or climb a hill, there sometimes is a 'rattle' noise. I can't specifically determine where, but I've heard this on other older RWD GM's. Letting off the gas solves it; it only does it when "under pressure," the same environment that triggers the CE light (though they do not always occur together).


    For the most part, it drives like a dream. It cruised the 1500+ miles home doing 80mph perfectly. Everything works exactly as it should, save for the above issues. The last owner took it to a mechanic, but the guy admitted he had no idea what he was doing on a car this old! I welcome any and all ideas. I'll fix whatever I have to, this is my official pristine dream car

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    Have a Auto. parts store scan the car for codes ( most do this for free ) and report back what codes you have . HTH

    John
    Guyopel
    The early bird gets the worm but the second mouse always gets the cheese.

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    Quote Originally Posted by guyopel View Post
    Have a Auto. parts store scan the car for codes ( most do this for free ) and report back what codes you have . HTH

    John
    I would, but can't; this is an '85. I'm pretty sure that the auto parts stores can only do more modern cars.

    Edit: However, thanks to the old school ODB-I system, a paper clip gave me the following two codes (descriptions pulled from another website)-


    E021 Shorted Throttle Position Sensor Circuit

    E034 MAP Sensor Signal Too High
    Last edited by CharredPC; 02-08-2010 at 09:46 PM.

  7. #7
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    The code "21" is for a TPS sensor that is out of range . The sensor is in the carb. and can be replaced by removing the top of the carb. and replacing the sensor or if the carb. needs to be rebuilt replace it while carb. is off for rebuilding . The map sensor code may be set because of the TPS code but check for vacuum leaks .
    This should be a good place to start .Good luck.

    John
    Guyopel
    The early bird gets the worm but the second mouse always gets the cheese.

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    One small additional bit of info that may or may not be relevant- a friend looked the car over and heard no obvious vacuum hiss, but noticed that the EGR valve was capped off. From what little I can find online, this sounds like an unwise thing for this engine. I can't help but wonder if it relates to the inexperienced mechanic and/or the previously described issues.

    If there's a better place to post this, just let me know. I realize this has gone from idle chitchat to car diagnosis...

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    Well, the more I drive her, the better she behaves. Maybe a lot of it was just from not being used enough. Guess her quirks can wait until the next tax return, when I get a professional to do some diagnosing / tune-up. Here she is today, sitting outside:



    Almost feel bad using her as my daily driver, what with having less than 60k original miles.

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