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1984 Vette

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Timppa

Guest
Hi all! What should I look for when considering a purchase of a 1984 Corvette? Any particular problem areas? Or links to 'buyers guides'?
 

Rob

Site Administrator
Staff member
Administrator
Joined
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Messages
13,780
Location
New Hampshire
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1990 Corvette ZR-1
Welcome to the Corvette Action Center.

Although this is not specific to model year, you may want to take a look at our Buying a Corvette article for some helpful tips.
 

vigman

Motor head!!!!
Joined
Feb 13, 2001
Messages
3,471
Location
Valencia, CA,USA
Corvette
88 Convert ( SOLD ) /1973 coupe 4 speed/1964 Vert!
1984

Cheap...fun... good starter Vette

BUT there pretty abused at this point in time.


You will probably sink a LOT of cash in it and not get much payback... cept for the fun of driving....


I would ( unless you have budget limitations )
steer clear of an 84 and get an 86 or later... even a beater 86 can be upgraded so it's a better car.


But if ya gotta have it...ya gotta have it...

Many people have 84's here and love em, I know I did... but I took a bath on mine.


Vig!
 
D

Drewser

Guest
I got a good one, but

Vig is right. Most at this point in time are abused. I got lucky, when we went to look at our 84, you could eat off the engine. There were no rips in the seat and the interior was perfect. They are out there, but I've seen far more crappy 84-87s that have been used as...who knows what.
Here's what to look for:
Does it start and run well? If not, stay away.
Is the original engine and intake system in place?
Does it have a bunch of modifications? If so...be afraid, be very afraid.

You have to figure that tires and paint wear. They can be replaced. You don't want to sink a new engine/tranny into your new baby. Service records are a plus (I got a large folder with mine) and the fewer owners the better.

Let us know what you decide.
--Drew:w
 
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topcat_5150

Guest
Like the others have said, look arround for one that is in decent shape to begin with. I bought my 84 Z51 11 months ago and it has been in the shop for all of them, untill this weekend. I though I got a deal on the car and have put about $3500 in it so far. A few thousand more than it is worth. My girlfriend has hasseled me about getting rid of it since I met her 8 months ago. She has a mustang. Today when we went to the mall in it she was moist. I think she might have been humoring me a little though.
A few things that cost $, because I know..

Auto Tranny that still is not right.. $1500
Brakes, rotors and pads $500
Cooling system problems.. $500
Rear Axel stub (not available), 84 is the only year that fits 84. We got 9 different ones before we got one that fit and was not junk from a junkyard. $250 + install +universals.
Universals are $42 a piece in Corvette Central, and $15 for the same part at the auto parts store. They are the same as a HD truck universal.

I have yet to get a seal kit. $600
Carpet kit.. $450
and a seat kit, $400 to $1000 ..yea right...

Hopefully I can drive it a while.

Good luck........ ..Tim
 
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topcat_5150

Guest
One last thing.. I do enjoy every mile driving it. I have a Scarab with a big block in it that cost me lots more jing to keep running and 2 bucks a minute to run.

Corvettes should really be called boats.

BOAT is an acronym for Bet On Another Thousand!

:) See ya... ..Tim
 
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Timppa

Guest
Thank you for all your comments, few more questions; have you had any problems with wheel bearings? What about CrossFire vs. TPI, is the throttle body injection more difficult to keep in shape? This ´84 is not my 1st Vette, only my first C4 (if i decide to buy it).
 
C

c4ever

Guest
I consider myself fortunate to have both cross-fire and TPI. Though I feel the TPI is a more refined engine I gotta tell you the cross-fire runs like a champ in the 82. I'm not about to audition for the "Fast and the Furious" but a well maintained cross-fire (mine's 20 years old) will give years of grins.

:D

Carlo
 
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Drewser

Guest
Well stated, Carlo

My crossfire has given my no problems what so ever. One other thing (a pet peeve really) is that a lot of 80s/90s vettes look like someone has taken a box cutter to the seals. If you can find good seals on an 84, that speaks volumes on the care the car has been given.
 
E

evolution

Guest
Drewser is right on the money about the weatherstripping. Sometimes the paint will be bad. I got a $500 paint job at a local cheap spray but it looks excellent from a couple of feet back (hey, its better than spending $2500 in the short run!). Everything else, like the tranny and other driveline stuff, I am scared to think about with mine. The only reason I feel it might be in good condition is that the rear window had a pilots association sticker in the back window. (methinks the previous owner took good care of it)

IMHO......buy an 87+... If I could I would, but I got mine for $4500 and an 87 costs a lot more.
 
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Torqueman2002

Guest
I have a 84 4+3, that I've had a ball improving. There are some nice 84s, but there's a lot of ratty ones - be careful!

The Cross-Fire can be difficult to set up correctly.

You'll have more upgrade (hot rodding) choices if you go with a TPI /PFI Vette rather than a TBI (84 and older).

I massaged the 84. I had a great time improving the performance, but I'm limited by the short run the TBIs had.

I converted to a 220 TBI (dual barrell) in 1986 for more torque (this is the only such conversion I know about), Comp Cam and 1.6 rockers, modified chip - more fuel and spark, 180 degree stat and fan switch, dual exhaust back to Flow Masters.

I plan to put on a pair of Headman Headers soon, then a set of Fastburn (Alum.) heads.

So, there are things you can do to an 84, but TBI was a just a step between carbs and true FI.

FI is the way to go.

I'll do that eventually - when I put the heads on I'll need more fuel than I can easily get from the TBI. I bumped the fuel pressure when I went to dual exhaust to cure a lean condition as a result of less back pressure. I will probably have to go to BB injectors and fuel pump when I put the headers on.
 
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Drewser

Guest
Have you tried...

an x-ram? Are you aware that the main problem with the x-fire is that it fails to breath properly? Check out this website . I think you can get more ponies than you think.
--Drew:w
 

Rob

Site Administrator
Staff member
Administrator
Joined
Sep 16, 2000
Messages
13,780
Location
New Hampshire
Corvette
1990 Corvette ZR-1
Here is an excerpt from Corvette From the Inside by Dave McLellan regarding the 1982/1984 L83 Crossfire setup:

From page 79:

The first small step in recovering from 1981 was the use of two throttle body injectors for 1982. These were mounted on a plate and fed a single-plane open manifold. The manifold was inspired by a Trans Am racing manifold that had been used with two 4-bbl carburetors on the 302cid engine a decade earlier. We quickly and naively committed to the single-plane manifold and compact injectors because we saw that it gave us an opportunity to lower the hood line of the all-new, next-generation Corvette by almost two inches. We soon realized what a bad idea it was, but it was too late to back out, so the engine guys had to make it work.

Our first problem was injector sticking. Cadillac solved the problem for us before the 1982 Corvette reached production, but not before the 1981 Cadillac -- with cylinder cutoff and the same injectors--shut down a number of customers. Their innovative, fuel-economy-improving cylinder shutoff, called 8-6-4, took the rap, becoming known as the "8-6-4-0," for what was really an injector problem. If each injector had fueled half of the engine, a stuck injector would only shut down that half of the engine, and the car would limp home with four cylinders firing. Unfortunately, both injectors fueled a common manifold, so the result of one failed injector was to double the air-fuel ratio to 28:1--a mixture too lean to burn.

Our other problem was with the single-plane manifold itself. Carburetor manifolds for V-8 engines had evolved as tall and complex distribution pipes in an attempt to minimize the air-fuel ratio variations that occurred between cylinders. Why were we so naive as to think that we could flatten the manifold without penalty? The flat Trans Am-style manifold gave such poor cylinder distribution that we had to compensate with extra fuel. When we showed the fuel-injected 1982 model to the press, we pointed to the racing manifold and fuel injection as the identifiable reasons for the horsepower incrase to 200 nhp. In reality, the greater power was due to the new low-back-pressure underfloor monolith catalytic converter. But who would equate catalytic converters with improving performance?
 
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Timppa

Guest
Since you guys were not able to convince me to totally stay away from 84, I went ahead and bought one.

She is black, painted a couple of years ago (decent paint job but definitely not perfect...), seems to have original engine and intake, starts well and runs well. Interior is quite worn so some attention is needed there, also some of the original weatherstripping needs to be replaced (noticed that in a heavy thunderstorm when I was driving her home for the 1st time). Transmission (auto) works well and the tires are new, only the AC needs recharging. One thing that I am a bit worried about is the dash gauge cluster, the right side seems to be brighter than the left side and the mileage display does not show all the digits.

In general, 84's seemed to be quite worn and abused as you all told me, but I think I found a reasonably good one for the money spent. Naturally 86 or newer would have been better choice if I had the money.
 
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Drewser

Guest
Congratulations!

Welcome to the '84 family. I haven't been sorry even for 1 minute that I have an 84. Fine car, you will have a lot of fun in her.:D
--Drew:w
 

billd

Well-known member
Joined
Dec 9, 2001
Messages
88
Location
Denver,CO
Corvette
2001 red convertible, 1985 wht
cool

I bought mine in Dcember and I LOVE THIS CAR. Its got a lot of quircks but that gives it great personality.

Just be ready to do all your own maintenance and whatch those crazy old seals they're a bunch of leakers an they'll drive you nuts. Only believe about about a third of what mechanics tell you for some reason they think that if you have enough money to own a vette you also have enough money to support thier shop while they throw parts at the car and hope that they've got it fixed.

WAIT I think I'm starting to rant and rave. I need to take a nap.
 

chevyaddict

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 12, 2002
Messages
894
Location
Tucson, AZ USA
Corvette
1990 Convertible
Woo-Hoo!! We absolutely love our 84 vette. It was cosmetically a wreck but ran pretty good; not hacked up too much. That is all the fun! Fixin' them up!! Congrats and you won't regret your decision!!
 

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