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Old 11-27-2007, 08:43 PM   #1
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How about a Saturn?

Well I have been looking for a little while now for a Civic VX and have realized that they are not the easiest thing to find. A co-work of mine suggested that I find a Saturn to drive. Doing a quick look around here at some of the cars others are driving I have seen some pretty impresive numbers coming from Saturns. So if I were to start looking for one what should I look for? What model/year is best? Does it matter if it is a four door vs. two? How about a wagon? It would be nice to have the room to travel on the longer trips as long as it doesn't kill the mileage.

Thanks,

Nathan
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Old 11-27-2007, 09:40 PM   #2
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I just picked up a 1996 SC2 for pretty cheap. I couldn't be happier with my decision. I just can't seem to keep my foot off the gas. It's too much fun.

Make sure to get one with a DOHC engine. I know the early SOHC's used throttle body injection (not sure how long that stuck around).
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Old 11-27-2007, 10:02 PM   #3
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^^ Do you still have the Jeep?


----
Going to the football game this weekend? I hear they have extra tickets available (and who cares about finals anyway)

-----
72lml,

My first car was an SW2 ('93 DOHC). I loved it. We threw all sorts of bad karma, crap etc. at it - and it just wouldn't die. When my parents got a hold of it (I had a new car, this car was then handed over), they let the oil run dry. The timing chain guides blew apart and the chain started eating through the valve cover - but it still ran like a champ (replacement was messy, but pretty cheap and DIYable) I'd love to tell you the mileage I got, but the odometer broke at 68K miles (and 4 or so years before selling) But yes, as said on saturnfans - check your oil... and you'll never need to replace the timing chain
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Old 11-27-2007, 10:10 PM   #4
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72lml -

I'm re-using some stuff from e-mails I sent to Red earlier this year, hope this helps :

I think you should figure out whether or not it has the improved (S/D)OHC timing chain. Here are examples of two timing chain kits :

Good timing chain - SOLID gears :

99-02 Saturn S Series DOHC 1.9 Timing Chain Set Kit
http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/99-02...spagenameZWDVW
Attachment 1109

Bad timing chain - gears with HOLES in them :

91-98 Saturn S Series DOHC 1.9 Timing Chain Set Kit
http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/91-98...spagenameZWDVW
Attachment 1110

If the car was never abused, it may be a non-issue. But if it looks like it's been performance-modded, then this component may have been abused.

One of Diamondlarry's original Saturns had a timing chain failure. Since it's an interference engine, it was bad times all around.

I think the 99-up timing chains can be installed/retrofitted to the 98-below Saturns. That's probably a Saturn dealer question.

Here's some more posts :

How good or how bad have your saturn(s) been?
http://www.saturnfans.com/forums/showthread.php?t=92720

You should keep a quart of motor oil in your trunk. It seems like the average Saturn burns up to a quart every 3000 miles.

I'm only showing the bad stuff because all cars have 'em. I wish they'd stuck with the S-Series and kept improving them, .

CarloSW2
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Old 11-27-2007, 10:15 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cfg83 View Post

I think the 99-up timing chains can be installed/retrofitted to the 98-below Saturns. That's probably a Saturn dealer question.
I wasn't aware of the good/bad chains... My '93 had the holes originally -- the replacement was solid
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Old 11-27-2007, 10:26 PM   #6
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from the pics they look like they aren't. the cam holes are smaller in the later design and the crank sprocket is deeper on the older one. however that's just looking at those pics which is all sorts of inaccurate.

trebuchet: was that newer cam gears or was that a recall/service bulletin ("use this new part, it's better")?
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Old 11-28-2007, 03:16 AM   #7
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Stick shift saturn wagon
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Old 11-28-2007, 08:35 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kamesama980 View Post
trebuchet: was that newer cam gears or was that a recall/service bulletin ("use this new part, it's better")?
It was me walking up to the parts counter of (select your favorite auto parts store)... Asking for a '93 DOHC 1.9 timing chain kit. At the time I wasn't aware of any differences I figured because it was after market, it was cheaper to just mfr a solid gear

My chain guide wasn't green though
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Old 11-28-2007, 03:39 PM   #9
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How about this one? It seems like wagons with a 5 speeds are not all to common. The price might be a little high compared to blue book but maybe the could be talked down.

http://minneapolis.craigslist.org/car/463130173.html

Nathan
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Old 11-28-2007, 04:04 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trebuchet03 View Post
^^ Do you still have the Jeep?


----
Going to the football game this weekend? I hear they have extra tickets available (and who cares about finals anyway)
Yeah, I've still got the Jeep, but the trans rebuild is taking longer than expected and I was gonna make the switch over to something smaller and found a great deal over the holiday weekend.
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I may go and tailgate, but I don't think I can afford to make it a whole day thing.
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The odometer gears are weak. They do tend to break and I'm not sure if Saturn ever fixed the problem. As far as oil consumption goes, I'll have to keep an eye on mine, but I don't think the majority of Saturns on the road have noticeable blow-by. Also, the top motor mounts tend to wear out and cause a ton of vibration, but they're easy enough to replace.

Why are people suggesting the wagon? I don't see any benefits other than helping to prevent the spread of cooties and maybe storage if you need that much space.
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