Can I remove my ODB1? (not a legal question)

Cuse99

Apprentice
Dec 21, 2020
99
18
Just started working on my 84 El Camino and I'm planning an engine swap. I live in NJ and we don't inspect cars prior to 1995, only cars with ODB2. I'm wondering if there are any mechanical/electrical or physical reasons why I can't just remove all the OBD1 stuff from the car. Get rid of that ugly connection under the dash, remove the computer, maybe replace the wiring harness.
Now I know if I decide to move out of state, I might have a problem, but that is not my concern at the moment.

Is there any reason from a running car perspective that I need to keep the ODB1 system?
 

JimmyCamino

Not-quite-so-new-guy
Dec 15, 2020
46
8
Alexandria, VA
I'm gonna say no, if you remove all the emission control equipment and make sure you are no longer using components that rely on a signal from that stuff, don't now how it would be a problem for performance. I've never done it so I can only offer logic rather than experience.

But what I can offer is that some jurisdictions do a visual inspection of emission equipment during the state safety inspection despite not testing if it is operational. So check your state's requirements on line if you plan on still getting a state safety inspection.

Virginia is the same way, cars more than 25 years old are not subject to an emission test, but sometime they sneak through at 24 years old.
 

UC645

G-Body Guru
Apr 20, 2020
677
93
Kittanning, Pa
Not saying NJ is the same, but as I understand it in PA you can remove the computer controlled stuff as long as you’ve got a catalytic converter(s) on the car. That’s coming from father, though, so I’m not sure how much family bias is involved.

Most of that stuff should be online, or ask around some service shops in your area.
 

Cuse99

Apprentice
Thread starter
Dec 21, 2020
99
18
But what I can offer is that some jurisdictions do a visual inspection of emission equipment during the state safety inspection despite not testing if it is operational. So check your state's requirements on line if you plan on still getting a state safety inspection.
No worries as long as I live in NJ. There is no inspection for passenger vehicles made prior to 1995. Nothing.
 

rfpowerdude

Master Mechanic
Jul 15, 2013
294
93
Palm Bay, Fla
What engine swap are you doing?
 

Cuse99

Apprentice
Thread starter
Dec 21, 2020
99
18
What engine swap are you doing?
What engine swap are you doing?
Planning a crate motor. The Chevy Performance 350/330 looks like a good option but actually leaning toward the 350/290. 300hp is way more than the car has now and I like the thought of using regular pump gas. This will be a daily driver, not a track or street car. I mean daily for work, fishing, grocery's, beer runs, etc. 300hp on the street is plenty of power. I have a dodge with a Hemi and the high price of premium gas is a pain. Fun car though. Another plus with the 350/290 is I won't have to pay for expensive performance parts. Mostly standard parts with a few upgrades and I'm good.
 
Last edited:

pontiac guy

Master Mechanic
Oct 28, 2016
465
93
Royse City, TX
If you ditch the OBD 1 you will need a different distributor and carb. You will also have to accommodate the lock up on your trans or do w/o
 

565bbchevy

Geezer
Aug 8, 2011
8,027
113
Michigan
300hp on the street is plenty of power.
I would get bored real fast with only 300 hp in a street car, just saying.
 

Bonnewagon

Geezer
Sep 18, 2009
7,753
113
Queens, NY
Is there any reason from a running car perspective that I need to keep the ODB1 system?
Only if you don't know how to set up a carb/distributor system. If you are not fluent in carb jetting and advance curves then you probably should leave it alone. That said, my plan is to look up the specs from the most similar engine from the last year before the CCC took over. That way you are at least in the ball park. Then you can fine-tune to what you want. But again, if you don't know how to do that you may end up with a crappy running engine.
 
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