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1986 GMC Caballero
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi All,
Getting going on my 86 Caballero. The engine runs fine (video) and it drives well, however, it looks like the previous owner was starting to remove the computer controls. A standard GM HEI is now installed and there are some loose harness plugs under hood. I'm pretty good with a wiring diagram, but I thought I would ask the "brain trust" here to ID the plugs in one of the photos. The mixture solenoid on the carb and its harness are connected and appear to be untampered, but there is no power (solenoid ticking) so its running full rich.

Anyway, if anyone can comment on what these plugs are, it would be a much appreciated head start for me before I start going through the shop manual. Here is a link of the replacement distributor I bought More Information for CARDONE 841875 and I'm pretty sure the white connector (center in picture) goes to that, and the 4-wire connector with the green gasket (right) I'm not sure, and the tan one (left) don't know either. I've looked around for "female" connectors on a harness but none to be found.

Thanks, Paul

 

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You are correct that the Carb will not work properly without the ECM info, and that is corrupt without the proper Distributor.

This is my Go to thread for connectors. Hope it helps.
 

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I have an 86 305 El Camino , I had to change to a non computer Distributor with vacuum advance ( your vacuum advance has no hose to carb ) , also you have to change to a Non computer Carb ( you can do that through Mountain Man Carb .) Then all should be OK , mine has worked for 12 years .
 

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1987 GMC Caballero, 350, Holley Sniper EFI, 200-4R
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1,073 Posts
Paul, my stock distributor was not your standard, HEI coil on top, distributor. If that's what you're struggling with (coil bolted to intake) that's the factory setup. I'm looking for "as found" photos of my Caballero to see if it's any help. If I find a good one I'll pass it on
 

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1986 GMC Caballero
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77 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
@ darbysan: thank you very much for the thread you provided. That is exactly what I was looking for to give me that "head start" I was talking about. Good Stuff!

@ Chris Nelson: I'm in CA so I have to go back to the factory set up to pass smog testing every 2 years (legally). However, going non-computer controlled as you suggest is not out of the question.

@ Caballero Joe: Looks like Rock Auto sent me the incorrect distributor. I'm familiar with the one you mention with the external coil. I thought GM went to that a little later than '86 but I guess not. This is very helpful info. Joe, I assume you sold your old distributor?

I appreciate all the replies!
Paul
 

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ECFAN, where you go depends on what you want to do...ECM control or old school. ECM control will require you to replace the current HEI distributor for a computer-controlled distributor that does not have vacuum advance. If you are interested, I still have the distributor I pulled from my 305. In addition, I also have an MSD billet version.

These parts are available because I opted for old school since it is easier to set up and get running. In addition to getting rid of the computer controls for the ignition/carb, I also stripped out of all the SMOG equipment. The new motor is a semi-mod, 4-bolt 350 with old school WCFB dual quads and vacuum advance distributor.

The one remaining issue I need to address is torque converter lockup. I will install an aftermarket circuit. You,however, haven't mentioned how your 86 Cabby transmission shifts and responds.
 

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1986 GMC Caballero
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77 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I'm a big fan of TCI's kit

View attachment 144252

Converter lockup works as it should
@ Caballero Joe: Thanks for looking for the distributor. I'll look into the TCI kit.

@57 Handyman: I'm interested on one of your distributors. Send me a private message/conversation to talk.

My trans shifts good, with the 1-2 a bit harder than I remember with my previous 86 years ago. The hard shift could be a number of things including TV adjustment or regular wear and tear with 100k plus on the car. As far as lock-up goes, I haven't driven the vehicle enough to check. It likely doesn't. I've been out of town for a month and as soon as I get back I will first remove the goofy exhaust the previous owner installed and make it quiet. Right now, it resonates so much I can't think or get a good feel for the vehicle.
 

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@ darbysan: thank you very much for the thread you provided. That is exactly what I was looking for to give me that "head start" I was talking about. Good Stuff!

@ Chris Nelson: I'm in CA so I have to go back to the factory set up to pass smog testing every 2 years (legally). However, going non-computer controlled as you suggest is not out of the question.

@ Caballero Joe: Looks like Rock Auto sent me the incorrect distributor. I'm familiar with the one you mention with the external coil. I thought GM went to that a little later than '86 but I guess not. This is very helpful info. Joe, I assume you sold your old distributor?

I appreciate all the replies!or
Paul
If you are in California you will have to get a computer controlled distributor to go with your cc carb & reinstall all the smog equipment .
 
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