Life is Great with a 6.0-liter V8
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  • Detailed

    Posted on September 30th, 2009 tcorzett No comments

    Today I took the G8 to get detailed. While I have been hand-washing the car regularly, I have not been able to determine what I should do regarding a wax. Doing some research I got lost in the world of detail sprays, clay bars, polishes, waxes, and so on…

    The detail department at Able Chevrolet in Rio Vista sponsored a ‘group buy’ for five forum members to get 30% off a complete detailing. The service included an exterior hand wash, vacuum and wipedown of the interior, cleaning of the inside/outside glass, dressing of the tires, claybar, a coat of Zaino sealant, Zaino detail spray (including removal of some smudges from the phonebook I hit the other day), and cleaning and conditioning of the leather.

    I needed to be at the dealership at 8:30am, so needed to wake-up early. Since I figured that I’d have some extra time, I decided to bring my camera and try to get some photos around the bridge that crosses the Sacramento River (even though the light is going the wrong direction).


    While I was waiting for the car to get detailed I was able to setup in the visitor lobby and work on photos (including a panorama).


    After the car was detailed the difference was clearly noticeable. Not only was it super smooth, but I the reflections in the paint and even the windows were perfect. I talked with the people who worked on the G8 and they were super impressed with the car (one even owns a G8 GT… he wanted to know more about the in-dash GPS). I also took the opportunity to learn about some of the maintenance products and what I can do to keep my car looking so smooth.

    After the detailing I headed out for a few more photos.


    Now that the G8 is super clean, it just needs a full tank of gas and I’ll be ready for GoatRun!

  • Speeding Ticket

    Posted on September 28th, 2009 tcorzett No comments

    WARNING: Radar detectors don’t do anything to help when the driver is being stupid!

    This morning on the way into work I was stopped and given my first speeding ticket. While it was not a pleasant experience, I can honestly say that I deserved it.

    I was driving on East bound I580 (as always) going with the flow of traffic. I’d say that traffic was a bit heaver today than most… maybe because I left home an hour earlier (I guess it’s a good reason to sleep in). I moved my way over to the #1 lane and was cruising along.

    I found myself behind a slower driver in a minivan (still ~70mph in a 65mph) and decided that I would pass him, so pulled into the #2 lane and started to accelerate. At the same time another driver in the #3 lane turned on their directional (for the second time, as they had already done it a few seconds before when a truck was passing them). As I approached this car I moved a little towards the #1 lane (maybe even causing the minivan to apply their brakes). At this point, I thought to myself… that wasn’t the smartest thing… I probably shouldn’t have done that…

    It was at this point that I looked in my rear view mirror to see the flashing red and blue lights of the CHP officer who had been sitting behind me the whole time (and I’m talking RIGHT behind me). I worked my way to the shoulder and stopped. The officer was actually quite respectable about the whole thing. He wrote me up for going 70mph in a 65mph zone (basically the most lenient ticket he could issue) and didn’t mention anything about “weaving through traffic” or about being in a construction zone (double fines) which I’m sure he could have done if he’d wanted to.

    I believe it was the fact that I was trying to move through the traffic that was the cause for him pulling me over… not necessarily the speed at which I was doing it. There wasn’t a single car on the road doing less than 70mph, and I’m sure he would have driven for miles with us all going that speed without stopping someone. Just the unsmart (and ultimately unsafe) nature of what I was doing was the provocation… and I can really respect that.

    So it looks like a fine (~$150 from what I can tell) and traffic school (at least you can do it online now). But it will make me rethink those sorts of activities in the future.

    Note: In no way did driving the G8 GT (or my “hot rod” as people at work are fond of calling it) cause me to get this ticket. I have, for the most part, always driven this stretch of road at similar speeds. In no way did having a radar detector (which as stated before doesn’t alert to driver stupidity) given me a feeling of “invincibility” to the repercussions of driving above the speed limit. And for those who may ask, no… the radar detector did not alert to the presence of the CHP officer as he was not using radar.

  • East Bay Cruise

    Posted on September 27th, 2009 tcorzett No comments

    East Bay Cruise
    After the Half Moon Bay cruise there has been some talk about getting together for more regular cruises. Given the Mod day and GoatRun, this weekend was the only one that I would be available for. With short notice to both the G8 and GTO communities, I put together a cruise through some of my ‘normal’ roads in the East Bay.

    View Larger Map

    The group gathered at the Stoneridge Mall in Pleasanton at 10am. I didn’t know how many people would be in attendance, so we waited around until almost 11am before starting out. There was one other G8 and a GTO. I had hoped for a few more cars, but small groups make doing cruises much easier.

    The drive down Foothill Blvd. was nothing special. When we got to the curvy part I happened to get a phone call from one of the cars in the cruise (we didn’t have enough radios for everyone). I understand the idea behind the hands-free laws, but trying to get my bluetooth on and in my ear… while answering the phone… while trying to drive around corners. The trip on Hwy84 through Niles Canyon was quite nice… very scenic.

    I had given everyone a heads-up about the turn onto Palomares Rd. I was impressed that the GPS (which worked perfectly by the way… including the route loading via the computer) pointed out that we needed to make a “sharp right turn”. Palomares was nice and clear of traffic, so worked out really nicely. I had a good chance to use the manual shifting mode and really liked how the tune was blipping the throttle on downshifts (it’s a great sound). There was some ‘popping’ noises while coasting in a higher gear (that were not present before the headers and exhaust), but the car behind me couldn’t hear it (so it couldn’t have been that bad).

    After Palomares we had to drive through Castro Valley to get to Redwood Rd, which was no fun. I wish there was a good way to get to Redwood Rd without having to drive through the ‘city’ streets. I was being a good guy when driving, knowing I had two people following me, and not passing slower drivers. I’m never really sure when to pass slow people when they are consistently not pulling over on a two lane road. When we got to a place where there was room to pull over I did and let the slower car get farther ahead. After a short wait we headed-out again and had a really great drive. When we caught-up with the slower car they finally took the hint and pulled over to let us by.

    We took a quick pit-stop at a park before heading back out onto Skyline Blvd. The remainder of the drive went by quite quickly. The view from Skyline and Grizzly Peak Blvd. was a bit disappointing due to haze, so we didn’t stop to take and photos. The drive through Tilden Park was relaxing as well.

    This lead to Wildcat Canyon Rd. which was just awesome. There was a slow car (I think we actually passed it twice in the day) that kept the road nice and clear. I took the opportunity to let the G8 show what it can do in the curves and it performed perfectly (I even lot sight of the GTO in my rear view mirror)!

    The last part of the drive around the reservoir was a nice cool-down. Since we were close to a photography location that I’ve been really wanting to check-out, we headed up Hwy4 towards Martinez. To my surprise, as we were pulling into the parking lot there was a police officer waiting to also turn in. I figured he was going to follow us up to the photo location (it’s clearly a place people go to do donuts and stuff). I parked and got out of the car and talked with the officer about how we would be doing some photography, and he left (we all figured he drove out of sight to wait for us to do donuts and race up and bust us)… but all we did was photography.


    While I dislike that ‘punks’ would potentially ruin a great photo location by doing donuts… it does makes for some cool ‘details’. With some proper positioning we get all the benefits of doing burnouts and donuts without needing new tires (or getting tickets from the waiting officer).


    The photo location really worked out nicely, but I wish the light was better… I will for sure be returning later in the evening to take advantage of the golden hour.

    The cruise appeared to be a success, and was a great shake-out drive before GoatRun. While more cars would have been nice, I think just having some sort of activity (involving the G8 folks) at least once a month. The more people we can get out to see what being in an active car club/community is like, the more people who will continue to come out to events.

  • GXP Rear Diffuser

    Posted on September 25th, 2009 tcorzett No comments

    I installed the GXP Rear Diffuser on the G8 tonight. Really a simple install… just pull out four plastic plugs and un-clip the old piece. Transfer the reflectors and pop the new diffuser onto the car. Total time maybe 30 minutes. Really a great mod for those looking for something simple that adds a little extra to the view from the rear.

  • Header Problem!

    Posted on September 22nd, 2009 tcorzett No comments

    There is a problem with the headers. Turns out the sound that what I was hearing when turning was real… it appears the steering shaft is coming in contact with the driver’s side header. It only happens at a few points, and is more pronounced when accelerating on right turns (I think because the engine is shifting towards the shaft).

    I was really worried that the shaft was putting force on the header causing an exhaust leak at the block or the mid-pipe. I checked all the bolts to make sure things were tight and it doesn’t seem there is any ‘slop’ for something to flex. I’ve also driven around with people listening from outside the car and they couldn’t hear anything (like would happen with an exhaust leak). Fortunately, it appears that the the steering shaft is only transmitting sound into the driver’s compartment… which is annoying, but shouldn’t be fatal.

    I have contacted JBA and will be really interested in what they suggest doing. I wouldn’t mind putting a little dent in at the point where things are contacting, but that would require getting the car up in the air again (which I don’t have the tools for) and removing the driver’s side header/mid-pipe. If something can be fixed by adjusting motor mounts that might work, but I don’t have that ability either.

    I will be sure to update everyone on how this goes…

  • NorCal GOATs Mod Day

    Posted on September 20th, 2009 tcorzett No comments

    The JBA Shorty Headers have been installed! It was a long day of working on the car, but I’m generally pleased with the results.

    On Sunday the NorCal GOATs had a Mod Day… it was really great to see everyone get together and wrench on cars! There was a constant stream of cars being works on… from header installs (3), fender grinding/rolling (3), ignition cylinder replacements, front splitter modifications, spark plug/wires, etc. There were over a dozen people working on things at various times. There was also a TV with football games and a great lunch.

    On the way to the Mod Day a few of us met up at Stoneridge Mall and made the drive to Tracy via Patterson Pass. The road was great (as always) and made for lots of fun before a long day of work.

    I got the G8 up in the air (I’m glad I had the experience from installing the Corsa Exhaust) and started removing the stock manifolds. The engine compartment of the G8 is a bit tight, so I’m really grateful there were some people with smaller hands to get into the tight spaces. After removing the stock manifold on the driver’s side we tried to install the new Shorty Header… unfortunately, there was a problem.

    The header was not connecting up to the stock mid-pipe/catalytic converter… the bolts were not going into the flange on the header. We had to remove the mid-pipe, where we discovered that the header had not been properly machined. The holes the bolts go into were not elongated the same on both headers… so out came the dremel! After a little grinding everything fit right and we continued on the install.

    Since installing the header to the mid-pipe was easier outside the car, we also removed the passenger’s side mid/cat (while others were grinding on the header). This side was machined properly so went very smoothly. Unfortunately, the driver’s side header/mid-pipe could not be installed as a single piece… this resulted in an exhaust leak when we first fired-up the engine. The leak was quite clear, but it took several different tries at fitting in different orders to get everything right. We even had to drop the exhaust on both sides to get things in right… but this resulted in an opportunity to hear what the G8 would sound like with no exhaust (it was nice)!

    Once everything was back together and checked-out I put the car back on the ground and took her out for a test drive. The drive was a short one though, as after a few minutes the engine was acting really rough and threw a Check Engine Light (CEL). I also noticed a noise when turning the car to the right (much more on this in the future). Fortunately, someone at the Mod Day had a DashHawk and was able to check and clear the CEL… turns out there was a “cylinder 2 misfire” caused by a loose spark plug wire. Once it was plugged back in I took the G8 out for a serious test drive.

    I don’t know if there was any ‘seat of the pants’ difference with the headers installed, but there is definitely an audible one. The G8 is actually QUIETER now. The sound is much more even… very refined. The car is mild at idle and low RPMs, but still screams at WOT… just what I wanted! I think the ECU tune, that was designed for running the headers, was not at homeostasis with only the exhaust installed, resulting in the louder sounds.

    Once my car was wrapped-up I had some more time to talk with some of the other people at the meet. It was really great, lots of information about all sorts of stuff from smog checks to photography. The night wrapped-up and I headed home (and actually made it without any major issues).

    Huge thanks go out to those who helped wrench on the G8… I would have never been able to do this by myself!

  • Corsa Exhaust

    Posted on September 13th, 2009 tcorzett No comments

    Last night was a late one, but the Corsa exhaust is on the G8 GT! The installation was straightforward and there were very few problems. Not as easy as the CAI, since you have to have the car up in the air, but definitely something you can do at home if you have a jack, stands, and some basic tools.

    Removal of the system was the most difficult part, as we didn’t have a 15mm deep (thin wall) socket. A quick trip to Home Depot solved that problem! The bolts holding the flanges to the cats were quite difficult to remove (I’m glad I’m a strong person… as even hitting the wrench with a mallet wasn’t doing anything to break them loose). Once those bolts were out the rest of the system just breaks down and comes out of the hangers.

    The install was just as easy as the removal. The stock exhaust is basically one piece from the cats to the mufflers, while the Corsa system consists of three sections. While it made it easier to install (smaller pieces to lift into place and maneuver around jack stands), the clamps that hold the pieces together require some serious torque (45ft-lbs). Trying to crank down on them was quite a task (and needed to be done for all 6 of them) when you are under a car.

    I’m really happy with the installed Corsa. The sound is something obvious, but not obnoxious. When you are at low RPMs driving around it’s a little louder than stock, but not obtrusive in the cabin. But once you get your foot into the throttle it really opens-up… something that the stock exhaust just doesn’t do.

    The sound at start-up and idle is really nice… I can actually hear the V8 (rather than the air conditioner):

    When the engine is revved a little you can hear that there is something more waiting to get out:

    And while the sound coming from the back is louder, the sound inside the cabin is not anything over the top. Also, at lower RPMs there is very little drone:

    I’m sure the Corsa is a bit louder than what some people would like, and I guess this is why the stock exhaust is just so quiet… but this is just how the G8 GT should be. Now when I’m driving I can enjoy the experience with ears, as much as I have been with the seat of my pants!

  • Volant CAI

    Posted on September 8th, 2009 tcorzett No comments


    The Volant CAI has been installed. It only took a couple of hours and wasn’t very difficult. This was my first ever engine mod and I had zero issues, I would highly recommend something like this for someone who is looking to get into mods (just beware of the Mod Bug). I was really shocked to see how much ‘extra stuff’ makes-up the factory intake… the Volant CAI is much more streamlined (that is sure to help with power). I’m really happy with the look under the hood, and think the dry filter will work out nicely. I can’t wait to get the exhaust and headers installed and the VMS tune flashed into the ECU/TCM.