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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Thinking of getting a B-body wagon for my wife. Any buying tips from the experienced wagonmasters out there?

Of course I'd like an LT1, but it's not essential. What are the 91-93 5.7L cars like?

John
 
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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
When I degan wagon shopping I was set on a Caprice because I was hoping for woodless and like the digital speedo(Roady is analog), then the 95 Roadmaster fell in my lap. The seats are nicer even before the power lumbar support the heated leather and the power recline, the vista roof is cool but makes the luggage rack short, wood was a standard option on these so woodless was a rarely ordered option.
I am very happy with the Roady, some love the climate control but I don't see it as all that wonderful, it heats and cools the car fine but is nowhere near as automatic as some would have you believe you are still going to fuss with it regularly just like normal controls only this is digital. The stereo in the Roady is nicer too BUT lacks the speed compensating volume I grew so accustomed to in the Caprice.
The non=tow package cars are usually(always?) 2.56 I wouldn't wish that on even the wife, the tow package cars are 2.93 often(always?) posi but have a mechanical fan that sounds like a small plane taxiing for takoff. The mechanical fan can be made more livable with a swap to a different fan clutch or many of us swap in an electric in it's place, if you go non-tow you might find yourself considering a gear swap the extra weight of a wagon combine with their fairly tall tires and 2.56 was just really a poor idea on GMs part and DOES NOT result in any noteworthy milage benifits. The LT1 pulls against them well enough for most people but that may not be you if you are here.
 
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I bought mone in early 2001. My only objective was to get an LT-1 car. LOL.

Back in 2001 these cars were still in the $8000+ range in general. My second consideration after the LT-1 was as cheap as possible.

I found mine with 120,000 on it for $3400. No power windows, full bench seat, 2:56 rear. The car had been used as it was intended to. It's fair share of dings and scratches.

Since then I've easily spent $2500 on it. 3:08's, Exhaust, wheels, lowered, center console with buckets, rear roll pan among others.

The only maintenence it has required is brakes (I replaced the original rears at 165,000) shocks, water pump and thermostat. I've also had to replace the flex plate twice. And of course oil change.

I still love it and plan on having it for a good while.

Have kids? My 14 year old twin boys love telling their friends that it has an LT-1 and with the new exhaust they always want me to rev it in front of the school on the days I drop them off. LOL

Check for the obvious. These cars seem to hold up well to rust but check the rear wheel area including the spare tire area.

Tranny's are a problem for some. Mine is the original. I think it has some do with aggressive driving but still check it out good. If something doesn't seem right, it likely isn't.

The good thing is they are somewhat programmable. Mine was growling and slipping and I had the shifts firmed up in the computer and all problems gone.
 
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Originally posted by Bone Stock:
Thinking of getting a B-body wagon for my wife. Any buying tips from the experienced wagonmasters out there?

Of course I'd like an LT1, but it's not essential. What are the 91-93 5.7L cars like?

John
I like the throttle body 5.7s from 92 and 93 IF they have 3.23 rear gears. Check the SPID for code GU5.
 
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the tips! I'm glad to see long posts are OK here; I think I'll fit in! :D

Here's the deal. She hauls a concert grand harp in her car. Almost 6' tall and rests on a twin mattress. She'd do well with a hearse but I'll never talk her into it. The floor rollers on a low-end hearse would be ideal. Not sure about the casket table on a better hearse but that might work too.

Anyway...

She'd probably end up with a Caprice. Many of the Roadmasters and Custom Cruisers have consoles, and she often needs "3+harp" seating, so that means a bench or split bench. Also the RMWs and CCs seem to usually have Vista roofs (do ALL the CCs, since that was an Olds signature feature ala Vista cruiser?). She tries to park in the shade, but can't always. They look darkly tinted but she still may not go far it. How dark are they?

She doesn't complain about the performance of her '84 Caprice Estate 5.0L (140bhp IIRC), so she'd probably be happy with any 91-96. I of course lean towards the LT1, but performance isn't the objective. She needs traditional station wagon values, i.e. big cargo area with a low, flat load floor.

My kids (19 boy & 15 girl) do like the LT1, but my Impala SS gives them all the bragging rights they need.

There aren't a lot of B wagons around. I've probably noticed every B car in the 11 days since I've had my SS, and seen only one wagon, an RMW. Here are 3 within a few hours away:

94 Caprice

92 Caprice

92 Caprice (240 miles away though!)

John
 
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I have a 91 cc that I have owned for 4 yrs.Great car and its amazing how much stuff you can put in it.I currently need a truck and would consider selling it.pm me and i can send some pics if interested.
 
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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
My Roady has a split bench and the Vista roof has shades you can draw. Would you believe that you are not the only person to look at these for hauling a harp? I believe Autocrosser has mentioned his Aunt owning a b-body wagon for exactly that reason.
 
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Dwayne, thanks for the encouraging news on the Roadies. That puts them back in the running!

I think full-size wagons make the ideal harp haulers, especially for people that may want to actually use the 2nd or 3rd row seats (sans harp) now and then, and just flip them up rather than stuff them back in like a minivan. Although some say the higher floor on a minivan or SUV actually makes loading easier.

I call her '84 Caprice Estate the Harpmobile. Apparently not that original a name, since I just now Googled "harpmobile" and got lots of hits. Here's one that calls the Caprice the harpmobile of choice. Some mention of hearses too:
Harpmobiles
 
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