Department - Author 1

Mechanical Engineering Department

Degree Name - Author 1

BS in Mechanical Engineering



Primary Advisor

Kim Shollenberger


The San Luis Obispo High School Automotive Technology Shop has a 1991 Buick V-6 Engine which uses the OBD-I (On-Board Diagnostics, generation one) standard for diagnostic testing and troubleshooting. In order to expand the capabilities of the Automotive Technology program and allow students to gain first-hand experience troubleshooting older OBD-I engines, the shop has a need for this engine to become part of a diagnostic and troubleshooting test bed. Some of the diagnostic tests the students will perform include checking cylinder pressure, monitoring coolant system temperatures, interpreting error codes from the OBD-I system, and conducting enhanced smog testing. All of these tests can be performed without modification to the engine except for the enhanced smog testing, which requires the addition of a separate system to place a load on the engine. The project was proposed by Jeff Lehmkuhl, the San Luis Obispo High School Automotive Shop Instructor. The project was primarily funded by the San Luis Obispo High School Automotive Technology Shop and the Mechanical Engineering Department at Cal Poly. Additional individual monetary and material donations also helped make the project possible. A list of supporting sponsors can be found in Appendix A. The students who use the shop will ultimately benefit from the additional training and experience this tool will offer as part of the Automotive Technology Program. The goal of the project is to mount this engine in a self-contained, movable test bed to facilitate diagnostic testing and troubleshooting of real-world problems on an OBD-I based system.