Newish to the forums 85 442

Mac442

Greasemonkey
Thread starter
Apr 25, 2020
163
43
Ocean County, NJ
Welcome to a great Site ,
Sweet looking car , can I be the first to ask how do you eat up engines with so low mileage ? Or is it all a quarter mile at a time ?
the inlays look like something that a guy who was on the Turbo Buick forum years ago sold..........along with engraved shift handles and stuff..............now to find this web site ( if he's still in business ) He had a decent grouping of parts.
Haha just wanting to go faster and learning as I went. And I basically used the 307 as a learning tool. I figured if my rebuild went wrong then I didn’t waste too much money. Had 9:1 compression and mild cam. Small ports even on the stock 5A heads were restrictive. Then I came across the Olds 350 for free. It became hard to find a machine shop who knew the nuances of Rocket V8s, at least by me. Used heads from a different motor. Olds 5 IIRC. Mixed and matched and ran okay. Have some valve train geometry problems.
I think part of the problem too is that I like working on the car as much as I like driving it. The minute I’m done I think what can I do next...
 

85442/86buick

G-Body Guru
Feb 12, 2013
653
93
Toronto
So true finding Engine builders/ Machine shops that understand Olds / Buicks ,it's a dying art forum .My guy is 63 or so and wants to retire soon........and there's no one to take over the business , I just hope ,I can have him tear down and re-do the short block of my Olds 350 before he packs it in.

Now that I am unemployed thank you very much Virus , this may not happen.
 
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Oct 14, 2008
6,692
113
Melville,Saskatchewan
Nice car, turn that Olds 350 into a 425+ CI with big torque with the billet 4" stroker crank.
 

Terbear55

n00b
Oct 11, 2020
2
1
I have a 85 442 I purchased new 35 years ago it came with air shocks in the rear. Can anyone tell me if this was a normal shock for this car
 

69hurstolds

Comic Book Super Hero
Supporting Member
Jan 2, 2006
4,652
113
I have a 85 442 I purchased new 35 years ago it came with air shocks in the rear. Can anyone tell me if this was a normal shock for this car
Yes, air adjustable rear shock absorbers were optional on the 83 H/O, but standard on 84 H/O and 85-87 442.

There was no paperwork or anything with the 85 442 discussing anything about the air shocks as far as pressures, but I talked to the service manager where I bought mine new and he told me you need a MINIMUM pressure of 25 psi, and maximum at 90 psi. It seems I found that somewhere in writing, but can't recall where at the moment. Still have the original shocks on my 85.

Got any pics of your 442???
 
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Terbear55

n00b
Oct 11, 2020
2
1
Yes, air adjustable rear shock absorbers were optional on the 83 H/O, but standard on 84 H/O and 85-87 442.

There was no paperwork or anything with the 85 442 discussing anything about the air shocks as far as pressures, but I talked to the service manager where I bought mine new and he told me you need a MINIMUM pressure of 25 psi, and maximum at 90 psi. It seems I found that somewhere in writing, but can't recall where at the moment. Still have the original shocks on my 85.

Got any pics of your 442???
Thank you for the information will try to get a few pics in a couple of days Thanks again
 

69hurstolds

Comic Book Super Hero
Supporting Member
Jan 2, 2006
4,652
113
Thank you for the information will try to get a few pics in a couple of days Thanks again
Just to add, for the last 37 years, I've always wondered why air shocks were chosen to be used on VIN 9 Oldsmobiles from the factory. I'm going to put them back on mine because I'm going to attempt a showroom style restoration, but they're one of the worst ideas for shocks if you're concerned about getting your car to handle corners well, IMO. Try to name another G-body brand that used air shocks on their "performance" version. You can't. Some Olds G-body design engineer for the VIN 9 rear suspension must've said "Hey, we got all these air shocks laying around from the station wagons, etc....wouldn't it be funny if....".

One of the biggest issues about the shocks is that they're sort of one-off style of shock tubing and connectors. They use a push-on spring clip on a 90 degree bend hose cover and little o-rings to seal the tubing to the shocks and air connector. Plus, the driver side has two ports, the passenger side has one. Not typical of aftermarket units, although some use that setup. But mainly, aftermarket uses threaded connections. Over time, the O-rings dry out and crack and lose the air. Or the tubing splits/cracks and the air leaks out. You can get O-rings for them and they also have tubing end repair kits, although I'm not 100% sure if they would work. They seemingly have the same clip end on them. Or if you're lucky enough to find GM NOS tubing...

Also, and this is just a personal whine, the factory fill valve uses mostly brass, non-rusting components with the exception of the nut washers. Flat steel washers which rust pretty quick. Looks like azz when you have a rusty ring under your nuts. :)
 

Mac442

Greasemonkey
Thread starter
Apr 25, 2020
163
43
Ocean County, NJ
Just to add, for the last 37 years, I've always wondered why air shocks were chosen to be used on VIN 9 Oldsmobiles from the factory. I'm going to put them back on mine because I'm going to attempt a showroom style restoration, but they're one of the worst ideas for shocks if you're concerned about getting your car to handle corners well, IMO. Try to name another G-body brand that used air shocks on their "performance" version. You can't. Some Olds G-body design engineer for the VIN 9 rear suspension must've said "Hey, we got all these air shocks laying around from the station wagons, etc....wouldn't it be funny if....".

One of the biggest issues about the shocks is that they're sort of one-off style of shock tubing and connectors. They use a push-on spring clip on a 90 degree bend hose cover and little o-rings to seal the tubing to the shocks and air connector. Plus, the driver side has two ports, the passenger side has one. Not typical of aftermarket units, although some use that setup. But mainly, aftermarket uses threaded connections. Over time, the O-rings dry out and crack and lose the air. Or the tubing splits/cracks and the air leaks out. You can get O-rings for them and they also have tubing end repair kits, although I'm not 100% sure if they would work. They seemingly have the same clip end on them. Or if you're lucky enough to find GM NOS tubing...

Also, and this is just a personal whine, the factory fill valve uses mostly brass, non-rusting components with the exception of the nut washers. Flat steel washers which rust pretty quick. Looks like azz when you have a rusty ring under your nuts. :)
I agree about the air shocks, I remember back in the day just thinking they were gimmicky. But I also got a lot of comments at the gas station back then, “whoa this things got air shocks”. I thought they were a pain, and not that great so I got rid of them soon after getting the car.
 
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