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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well... more of a "Rebirth" or "Return"... to the Van my wife and I enjoyed driving Out West back in 95'. I really owe it to this tired old vehicle to "Make it feel right again".

Don't get me wrong - it is still driveable - Xmas trees, pallets of sod, 7 family members, GAP outlet store runs, who needs to go where and with what? , etc, etc, etc... But, I can't put these off for too long much longer. The other car ( 2006 Altima SE ) is finally out of the shop and trustworthy enough to take the van "out of service" for an extended period.

I have till August 2015 ( Whew, hope it doesn't take THAT long ). We are planning a trip to Sturgis 75th Anniv. and points west with my wife's sister and her husband ( who are "Harley Davidson aficionados" ). They will be driving another van ( brand X ) and pulling their bikes on a trailer. Wife and I will help with pulling "The Toys".

Need to do / Things to do / Want to do

1) JY Fuel door release - Lever flops around - Cable end still intact - Latch still works
- update: still need OEM lever from JY, but was able to temp. repair the cable end/lever capture point.

2) JY Replace headliner / repair / visors - loose - entire - front to back - deadening - insulation

3) JY Engine fan clutch OR Electric fan & relay conversion

4) Cruise control not working - check all vacuum fittings and hoses - elecs. & servo system

5) Heater / A/C vent controls selector - chk. vacuum system - JY replacement dash control unit

6) Hard idle - in gear

7) Electric door locks balky

8) JY Windows slow - one slows the other

9) Bad Ground - in dash?

10) Ammeter bounces with blinker

11) Engine elec. / Alternator noise thru stereo - AM - need RADIO GROUND TO METAL

12) Shocks - all four - would like smooth "cushy ride" OEM style

13) Body - Frame mounts / bushings - noisy over bumps

14) Stereo / amp. refurbish - heat - cavity in heater duct - wiring - door speakers/subs - insulation/deadening

15) Sliding door / bearings / clean / grease

16) Door seals - silicone

17) Interior panels / Carpet cleaning

18) JY Seat belt latch covers - plastic shroud

19) OEM Reese hitch ball carrier and locking retainer pin - ball set - offset? - extender?

20) Trailer wiring harness - permanent? - routing to plug - hideaway / swing up

21) Dents - minor above l.r. wheel & on sliding door/r.r. wheel well

22) Fog lights get working / rework - reseal - mechanical and elec.

23) JY Glove compartment release broken - 2nd time

24) Complete chassis lube

25) Steering / suspension component / bushings check

26) JY Rear stabilizer bar & related parts - JY?

27) Sound proofing, deadening, insulation

28) GAS MILEAGE issues - emissions systems, cat, exhaust

29) PERFORMANCE issues - head & intake work, cam, CAI - CPI vs TBI

Yes - have quite a bit to do. They are in some sort of order - starting with my/it's most immediate needs and I realize that some will be taken care with others as one item is fixed. IE: 7) door locks balky, 8) Windows slow or never, 9) Bad Ground issues, 10) Ammeter bounces and 11) Alternator noise thru stereo will probably tie together to some degree.

As will 2) Hdliner, 14) stereo, door spkrs. & insulation, 15) Sliding door, 16) Door seals, 17) Interior panels / Carpet cleaning and 27) Sound proofing, etc. will be taken care of concurrently.

Vacuum issues the same... 4) Cruise and 5) A/C controls

I will be referring to these items under the #)s assigned and will do my best to take as many GOOD photos as I can - PROMISE. Scouts Honor? Now - onto the Headliner...

Mike
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Guess I'm "all in", no turning back now. Spent the afternoon yesterday shopping for van materials at Hancock Fabrics, Lowes and our friendly neighborhood JY ( Bessler's ).

I will post photos and info as soon as I finish PAINTING THE FRONT PORCH. Dang...! ( and a few other choice expletives ) Seems the more I get into working on the van, the bigger her "honeydew list" gets. Should be this afternoon.

Mike
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I didn't know you all knew her...LoL
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Update: - Geez... Top coat done, hedges trimmed, look at pile 10 feet tall !!!, eat, shower, beer and:

Lumpy, that's funny - BMW, Porsche, HAH! It was primer over the crappy paint I did the other day - had to sand most of it off where it had bubbled and dried.

Still have to top coat it. Dang wife... we get a couple items crossed off and she just makes a new one - never get to see "THE LIST" get done....but I AM doin' stuff.

On to the van stuff: Went to Hancock Fabrics in Newport and got 4 yards of Oxford Grey ( their spelling ) 60" wide headliner material - lists for $14.99 /yd..
Drove down to Florence Lowes for a roll of Reflectix insulation, a roll of Peel & Seal, 2 cans of 3M 77 and a pack of torx bits.
Then off to Bessler's JY in Hebron - spent a couple of hours wandering about, then 1/2 hr to pull a gas door release assy., electronic ( GEN II ? ) overhead console & a GEN I passenger lighted visor.

By the way - I always put my captions UNDER the photo - old school, I guess.


Fairly productive - Strange clerk, good deals and an interesting JY visit... a different post, I'm sure.


Hancock Fabrics lists their 60" wd. Headliner material for $14.99 / yd - they stock some 48" and make deals on remnants - I brought 4 yds. and it actually matched their online color sample. I bring 2 bolts to the desk, 1 kinda' shabby with a few spots, 1 new - asked if I could get a break on the old one, he said "50 PER CENT OFF FOR THAT" - real loud and sounding just like "NO SOUP FOR YOU" from Seinfeld - same face and ethnic bkgrnd. Seemed serious, scared the crap out of us.

I was just talking w/ him there the other day about his 12 oz $14 can of contact glue & he was nice as can be and NO accent! The shabby bolt was too short - she unrolled 4 yds from the new bolt and sent me to the cashier with a slip. He scans a code on the register and says, "$31.80 please" - paid him, grabbed the receipt and material and RAN outa' there. New headliner for $7.50 / yd. right there on the receipt. Nice.


This Peel & Seal seems very highly rated, forums, reviews and some guys I know that wished they had saved their money over some of the alternatives. Can't beat it - $16.48 for 6" x 25' - it's about 3/16 thick. I will be using it in the "front" area ceiling between the A and B pillars, front and back doors - partial inner and outer skins, speaker mounts and locations... I know I will be buying more. Cans of 16oz 3M 77 were $9.95 ea., set of 5 torx bits up to #40 - $4.98.
The lady smiled and seemed genuinely human.

Are there any torx on these vans larger than 40 - is the seat belt anchor 50?


I had temporarily fixed the release lever and cable end - posted a short version on "What have...your van today". I still wanted to replace the lever, oil the new cable length and make like new - so I got this GEN I lever assy., cable and latch box for $6.99 at the JY. Still has the microscopic spring in the lever - no rust. It came from a 94 Astro and the latch nylon was black, my orig is white.

Did I read somewhere about the latch plastic breaking on some?


Got a "Like New" pass. lighted visor for $5.99 at the JY. The plug on my old one was 5X harder to come apart than the rest of the screws. I forgot my "electric plug getteropener slipsundertab gadget". Clean, seemingly unused and it works!!

Do any of the later model visors fit - the ones with the extension piece that slides to the inside and has a "double visor"? Maybe that's conv. vans only?


Reflectix from Lowes seems thin enough to fit above the headliner base material - should provide some additional insulation and sound deadening - honestly, I have not been able to look under the "substrate"? except in front around the console - what's up there? It was $39.90 for the roll 4' wide X 25' long X 5/16" thick, alum. both sides. I am planning to use the 3M 77 to hold it up - black butyl by the ribs. Should be plenty. They sell quite a few widths - all reasonbly priced, I think.


1998 Bravada Ovrhd. Console, from the JY, paid $15.99, very good shape - nothing extra for the Temp Sensor or wiring harness bits and pieces. They did check all the hidden pockets, never looked in MY pockets ( I had a giant trench coat and heavy backpack on ) or checked my toolbag. No cavity checks...

I did a prelim. fit and it is "workable" - the side contour is close and the substrate will have to be filled in some ( my orig. console is 1/2" or so wider ). It does have the inch/mm and mode buttons - if I remember right - temp and compass? Is there more - it's all I wanted. Maybe a clock or mileage? I'll look for it again online.

Temp. seems like no big deal, but need to find an electronic compass to interface - anyone have suggestions? Radio shack?

Leeann has a Bravada or did - maybe she can help with wiring or the control module for the console. Please.


Another photo of console and Temp. Sensor, Display Bezel is cleaner than the photos show - it's attached with 3 phillips screws, 2 under the clear domelight cover, 1 at the windshield end - you can see it in the previous photo. My orig. has 4 M10 screws and "angled" plastic tabs that go into slotted openings in the ceiling adapter plate - interesting. A bit of "fitup" ( and I use it lightly ) will be called for. Another day...


Side view showing contour - seems like GM used this design on quite a few models. Just hoping I didn't waste $16. No, I do not know if it even works electrically - think they'll take it back...??? LOL

Not sure when this Portion will be completed - but will keep up and not allow things to stagnate. I say that now.

Later, Mike

ps: wife asked if there is a "Longest Boring Post" contest or poll. What does she mean? - just because I can go on for what should - damn her, she hit SUBMIT
 

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I got the same console. Did you get the temp sensor in the grill while you were there? I could never get the computer in mine to fire up at all not a light. But the ceiling contour is similar. It looks factory once it is in. They got a cool light deal. If the map lights are on open the door and they go off and the dome light comes on. I got the garage door opener to work to. You got a console already mine just had the dome light. And it wasn't worth a nickle. So dim you couldn't even read anything. So for me it was worth it for the light and the garage opener. Not to mention I like the look.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
chevymaher said:
I got the same console. Did you get the temp sensor in the grill while you were there? I could never get the computer in mine to fire up at all not a light. But the ceiling contour is similar. It looks factory once it is in. They got a cool light deal. If the map lights are on open the door and they go off and the dome light comes on. I got the garage door opener to work to. You got a console already mine just had the dome light. And it wasn't worth a nickle. So dim you couldn't even read anything. So for me it was worth it for the light and the garage opener. Not to mention I like the look.
Morning Randy - yes, I remember seeing how well it fit, looked factory, NICE - what did you get it from? And did you get the harness parts that involved the mirror too? The mirror was gone in this 98 Bravada, but the lead and small plug were still there. Have to look what that model/year's mirror did besides auto dim.

Yes - you can see the temp sensor / short wire harness in the photo. You say you originally only had the dome light - so your headliner was more solid where the console mounts? What bracketry or adapter mounts did you have up there - mine has a "full length" plate w/ the weird "tapered slots" - which will interfere w/ the front inside head of the console.

What were you referring to about the computer? I guess you were only able to get temp, right? What garage door opener - 3 buttons/homelink or the strapin opener that uses the console button to push it? Saw one of those too.

Mike
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
These will definitely help with this Project: Purchased on @bay early Tuesday morning, now get this - Delivered an hour ago - 2 days from middle of Penn. Fedex Tracking, the whole bit, bubble wrapped, packaged both nice in same box.
Lightly used - good fingerprint locations are like "tabs" for most often repaired items.
j2toolsandsupply (35687 ) - 99.9% Positive feedback


Chevy Dealership 1992 Astro Van Electrical Diagnosis & Wiring Diagrams - Book # ST-372-92-EDD
$9.97 and free shipping.


Genuine GM 1992 ASTRO VAN Dealership Shop Service Repair Manual - Book # ST 372-92
$7.53 and free shipping on both.

Never thought I could get these 2 for $17.50 - amazing...

Mike
 

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My service manuals also came with some great "earmarks" as well as hand written notes, drawings and schematics. Thanks mystery prior mechanic.

Lump
 

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I have a '93 Bravada, not a '98. Console in that does temp & compass. But I'll see if I can find a wiring diagram for a '98 for you.

That is what you asked for, right? I think I fell asleep there for a minute :lol:
 

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Mike I have many wiring color diagrams your welcome to. Seems they changed the colors every 3 weeks and on every model. My best advice is garage door opener and lights. If you can decipher a hot and ground for the computer you can "Maybe" get the compass and temp going. There are 6 colors the temp sensor could be. Depending on the day of the week it was made. Wire colors change from one plug to another. Same wire one color going in and another going out. Then they change again going into the vans wiring in the headliner. Just remember computers are better and easier and the colors will be marked and be the same as on the diagram.
:rofl: :rofl: :rofl:
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Thanks Leeann and Chevy - perfect. I'll compare this wiring and colors in the morning to the diagrams and let you know.

I'll see what I might need and let you know, Randy. Oh, I know and remember it well, this GM wiring thing... from putting in the HU, amp and speakers years back.

Thanks again !! Off to bed...

Mike
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
OK now - back to work.

While I was BUSY doing everything else - taking care of the wife's PT, both our multiple Drs. appts., had to get a new stove as the old one decided to "Go Welding" on us ( oven element caught fire, sparked, threw fireballs, making a horrendous noise, couldn't put it out - had to pull the Breaker, blah, blah, blah ). New GE stove now...

But I did manage to get a few things done:

Yep - sure do need a new Headliner - Pulled the old Console out, then had to trim it to be able to work around it.

It don't look toooo bad - LoL - back part kinda' makes a fashion statement...

Trimmed Headliner so I could work on the Console fit up - I will post a better view of Console mounting plate after I get the Headliner out. Pulled the radio out to prep for running a new ground and for the IGN power source for the new Console.


just trying a few things out - different ways to post images...
Anyway, new Console sitting in front of Old - note differences in the width at top and bottom - will require "building out" the insides of the substrate about 1" at the front and back.


New Console on right - approx 2" shorter and narrower at the front and back. It has a removeable "inside cover" that runs the length of it - to gain access to wiring and components. There is a front locator tab ( at the bottom in this photo ) that I removed during fit up. More on this later.


I know it doesn't look like much... but talk about your cheap a$$ electrical tape - it was used inside the Console. Thin as cellophane and a staticy (sp) feel like mylar??


Consoles side by side - the difference in contours is evident - not sure if any other contours were used - Astro/safari style? It's close, s/b OK with some persuasion to the headliner contour using foam offset and minor easing.


Red boxes indicate where foam filler under the substrate will help w/ the contour match. Front held up temporarily with a piece of wood - hole center punched - just have to wait till Headliner is out to drill for front screw. More on this also LATER.


I hate this jungle behind the radio and I need Console power. You can just make out where I cut into the "Heater Duct" to get the radio to fit. Did that about 15 years ago - doh!

Another Bucket list item...


Console / Radio / etc electric schematic. Sitting in the Drs. office(S), thought I'd draw up what I did with the wiring. I have a much better quality version in PDF and DWG format if you wish. This was just for testing and "proof of concept", so there might be a change or 6.

LoL


Same Console / Radio / etc electric schematic but for you color challenged.

B/W - none of those pesky colors to fool with. I need to gather some notes about the wiring - I'll get back on those also.


Success - at last!!!

On to removing the interior.

Mike
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Well, after a couple weeks getting more light and power in the garage, I can now see what I'm doing and use a few power tools without having yards of extension cords running from all over the house. 1 plug in the entire 2 car garage ??

After test fitting and getting the New Console working ( SORT OF ), time to start pulling the interior and documenting it. Quite a bit to do to get the headliner out:


This cute single wire connector ( I'm being nice ), without the proper tool, could be your undoing. Just saying. Got 3 hands? Don't want to drop the Visor? This is starting like this?
Old sticky foam looks to easily become a nightmare. NOTE FOR FUTURE: Try to keep as much of the material stuck to the fiberglass backing as possible - Mine was partially detached & had cut it out for the Console fit up and it was hanging down in my way. Bummer, the old foam is now permanently part of my hair...

Highly consider the $500 or so to get it done elsewhere...naahhhh, get a hat and mask.


3 phillips hold the visor up. The connector only has 1 wire as the metal rod carries the ground thru the triangular base, spring and sheet metal.


22 years later - original bulbs still work. But if you have to change them or service your VISOR, there's 4 phillips screws under the lenses.


What a contraption - looks like a flat Rube Goldberg. Rotating contacts, sliding steel plates, lo and hi beam slider for the 4 bulbs, count em, 4 of em. RED arrows show power contacts

LOL, all this mechanism in a lighted VISOR.


Innocent little Visor Clip X 2
I HATE them.


See me shaking? So far, pulling these 2 Visor Clips out of the sheet metal without ruining them or the headliner was the second hardest thing I have done on the van. And that includes changing front shocks, stabil. bar and a 4 corner brake job...


Fast spiral screws ( #10 Torx ) pull the center down as a mechanical "drywall style" retainer. Screw does not go into metal.


Both Clips were mangled after being pulled straight out. The "draw down" plastic and screw should still spread the ribbed wings and hold them in. Sheet metal edges really had a hold on em'


Managed to save the 2 hole locations in the fiberglass. Don't twist the Visor Clip side to side.
The old foam has now turned to a STICKY GOO ( the actual technical term ). And it is getting all over everything. Got the seats wrapped like mummies. I can't wait to start cleaning this crap off the rather flimsy fiberglass base.


"Passenger Assist" Door Handle-Outside of both Bolt covers popped off. These 2 bolts loosened over the years and were only finger tight. geez...
My "Custom Automotive Retainer Removal Tool" in the background.


Bolt covers were NOT real easy to pop off. Pushed from inside, then used a dull putty knife to dig into around it and scar it... no, just pop it up on the corner to just POP it loose, POP goes the released catch. Pop, Pop... Now watch were it goes-17' feet away-new record. Careful now-these old pieces are brittle sometimes and break too easily.


Pass. Door Trim piece phillips. Grossly dirty, stained embarrassment.


Here's the location of the 3 retainers. They are the same on the other side. Black tape are my markers. There is also a phillips screw at the end of both.


Pull down on the trim piece to reveal the retainer TAB-a screwdriver from both ends will help release it. A slight twist, push, levering and holding your tongue right helps. POPS right out...


Retainer has a VERY tight fit on the tab, which was sorta' welded to the metal.


This retainer "TAB" is about 2" long and pretty strong - glad for that!


"Tree" fasteners are used all over this van - the right removal tool and knowing where they are is key. These pulled out fairly easy and can be reused, altho' most auto parts stores have them. Do you need a close up of the TREE thingie?

Tomorrow, I'll start on the "Center" sections, seat belts, seats, sliding door surround trim and dome lamp.

Mike
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
NO... I did not get to the Dome Light yet. I realize everyone is waiting to comment for when I work on IT.

Until then, I plod on: "Phase 1" was the purchase of JY parts, New ( to me ) OH Console, Headliner stuff, Insulation, padding, etc. and the test wiring and fit up of the Console to the Headliner.

Phase 2 was the removal of the Visors, Visor Clips and "Front" Door and Window Trim pieces between the A & B pillars.

Phase 3: Removal of the "Middle" Trim at the Sliding Door frame surround. B to C pillars. This will include some of the "Rear" hardware also.

Phase 4: Removal of the Passenger sd. "Rear" Trim and hardware from the C to D pillars. This will include some of the RR. A/C Duct work also.

Phase 5: Removal of the Driver sd. single large Trim panel and hardware from the B to D pillars.

Phase 6: Removal of anything else, hardware or velcro, whatever, holding the Headliner(s) up, then finally IT / THEY can be pulled out and put on the workbench.

Mike
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I need a new Avatar - That mini pic of the Van with the "snow" thing going on... well... it's just tired.

Mike
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Before going on, there's just a few things or notes I been keeping as I went along.
I will share.

- I am a Professional, but an Unprofessional mechanic in a Closed garage - Your actual Van or mileage may differ...

- LT Trim appears to be the highest level on these Astros, not sure what the Safari high trim level is called.

- I am going to Number my photos ( just like they are in the Gallery ) from here on out - I keep having to refer to another photo for details, etc, etc.

- Wire Harnesses uncovered so far are not wrapped, untidy, some pinched in metal and plastic.

- I would like to show all the fastener styles seen so far - probably a dozen.

- Consider latex or reg. thin gloves on old hdlnr. foam.

- Haynes book - published 1993 skimpy on interior items

- GM Field Service Manual is not much better - not much LT Trim stuff.

- There is a Visor Clip drawing - 1992 FSM / pg 10 A 4 - 9, fig. 13.

- Side door roller bracket covers - upper and lower - JY.

- Careful with "Middle" side door Trim piece - the two ends are thin - flimsiest parts so far.

- Photo(s) of all the tools used - univ., 13mm, specials, speed handle, 5/16 socket, etc. Maybe, I dunno.

- Seat in /out and locations - I did not have to pull front seats - just move them forward, Both middle seats are out - I keep one out all the time. Back seat stayed in, I just moved it back and forth and tilted it where I needed it. They will also help to hold the headliner up going in and out. Your call, I just didn't have anyplace to put that big, heavy thing.

- Need sliding door upper bracket Trim Pieces. Did I repeat myself? uh, yup

- Need Seat belt cover, glove comp. door/latch, Drvrs. Lighted / Mirror Visor, Auto dimming mirror w/ Compass.

- Working on these Vans - like other things - there are phillips screwdrivers and then there are Phillips Screwdrivers that work really GOOD - grip in there like no tomorrow, fit snug. You will need just one good one. Maybe it's a Metric Phillips?? Not sure - shop around, take some screws you struggled to get out - you need to get the BEST Phillips Screwdriver you can get.

- There seems to be a total mix of Inch and Metric hardware and fasteners used throughout - but those Phillips screws are ALL the same.

I know there's more - when they trickle out, I'll write them down.

Mike
 
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