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An old friend drove her 96 Grand caravan until the engine stopped. She discovered that it was out of oil. The engine is seized according to one. She has had someone try and move the crank by hand with limited success. Since the parts + labor costs in replacing the engine exceed the cost of finding another 96 GC, she will be buying another and I was thinking of buying that seized van.

Rather than remove the 3.0L/A670 drive train as a unit with cradle on the ground and then separate, is there another option?

If a breaker bar can rotate the crank, I am wondering if I can release all TC bolts by rotating the crank enough to gain access resulting in not having to harm the TC oil seal,.leaving the tranny in the vehicle and raising the engine out from the top. This would mean removing the wiper tray on the GEN3 GC I could salvage the October 2012 new water pump/timing belt and install on the replacement engine.

What are your thoughts on this. Currently the local upick bone yard is selling engines/tranny at low prices.

Thanks
 

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I think it could be done with the wiper tray out but I think you will need to remove the cross brace across the top of the radiator and remove the fans and possibly the radiator; hopefully not the condenser. I haven't done this but have had the heads off to change the HG's and a cracked exhaust manifold.
Here is a picture from that job.
 

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The radiator is best removed or protected with a wooden board so that if the engine bumps into it on the way in or out, it doesn't get damaged and leak.
I have seen a 3.0L with a seized steel cam to aluminum head journal. It stopped the engine without breaking the t/belt. If the seize is in the block, then a used motor sounds like the ticket. They are out there.
Leaving the transaxle in the car is risky. It has to be held to the left and supported, but not far enough that might damage the CV joints. The mount bracket and crank pulley can be removed to get the motor to the right as possible. Both might be lowered out the bottom, but this would be difficult in a garage or driveway without a lift.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
ImperialCrown said:
The radiator is best removed or protected with a wooden board so that if the engine bumps into it on the way in or out, it doesn't get damaged and leak.
I have seen a 3.0L with a seized steel cam to aluminum head journal. It stopped the engine without breaking the t/belt. If the seize is in the block, then a used motor sounds like the ticket. They are out there.
Leaving the transaxle in the car is risky. It has to be held to the left and supported, but not far enough that might damage the CV joints. The mount bracket and crank pulley can be removed to get the motor to the right as possible. Both might be lowered out the bottom, but this would be difficult in a garage or driveway without a lift.
I have swapped engine/trans in Gen 1 & 2 Caravans. Not gen 3's. The tradition method I have used was to scribe and release hood,remove any components that interfere such as rad,accessories and W.H.Y., mark and label hoses and wiring ... then lift away. If I decide to lift, Due to the tighter areas in the Gen 3, the wiper tray,rad,harmonic balancer etc would be removed along with rad or any other item reducing clearance. Then lifting away supporting tranny and insuring it and the drive shafts won't travel.

I have never dropped the drivetrain from a GEN 3. I work on a garage floor using only jack stands.
The question is which is easier. Removing Driveshafts, steering knuckles may mean extra work. But what about the cradle assembly? Would there be enough clearance to Lowering the drivetrain using a floor jack so that the drivetrain clears the frame when pulling the assembly out from beneath the vehicle. Once outside the vehicle then the engine seized engine could be separated and replaced to the A670.

I have seen Gen 4 vans have their engines lifted from the compartment and replaced in 6 hours & I hope to do the same with this Gen 3.

Any thoughts or considerations would be greatly appreciated. I'll take pics and post.

One further question.... Could the seized engine damage the new timing belt/water pump in this 3.0L V6 in any way?
 

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Once you remove the belts, it looks like you will have plenty of clearance on the passenger side. I believe the 3.0 is shorter than the 2.4 after comparing the two in my driveway. It makes sense that a 6 cylinder engine would be shorter than a 4 cylinder setup. The problem on Gen 3 mini-vans is that the width from front to back of the engine compartment is a little narrow. I'd suspend the tranny from above if possible. I've used a 2X4 from front to back and a chain on a bolt in the tranny case. That may be tougher because of the front cross member being off, so you may need to rig something up. Supporting the tranny with a jackstand on concrete from below is also a possibility but can sometimes get in the way. You should not need to remove the driver's side tranny mount. Also, looking at my 3.0 in the 96, I see they have engine lifting eyelits on the left rear and right front of the engine. I don't think this will be too difficult a project. It is just all the stuff that needs to be removed. Change the timing belt, tensioner, and water pump on the donor engine before dropping it in for an easier job.
 
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