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Topic ClosedSubaru, really the answer?

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Scruff Daddy

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Direct Link To This Post Topic: Subaru, really the answer?
    Posted: 15 Sep 07 at 21:52

I have a customer, who, for the moment will remain nameless, unless he wants to out himself.

he bought a van, with a EJ 22 lump fitted.

The engine knocks, a bottom end rattle.

So, he has another engine to fit to it before it dies.

Rather than fit yet another unknown second hand scrap yard engine I thought it would be prudent just to see how much a recon engine would be.

Er, no one seems to want to touch them!

The best I could find was Vege, who don't offer this engine but reluctantly saisd they would take an engine and rebuild it, to the tune of 3095 plus VAT!

Now i didn't spend that much time looking, made a few phone calls to the usual suspects but has anyone ever bought a recon/rebuild Subaru engine?

 

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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15 Sep 07 at 22:02

A mate had to get one for his subaru, He got his from API at leaminton Spa, and his is as sweet as a nut!

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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15 Sep 07 at 22:07
Mate of a mate also had one... I'm sure that was from API too.
Are they well known in the Jap car circuit? cos they were recommended on Scoobynet I think



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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15 Sep 07 at 22:11
When I took him up there to pick it up I was impressed, Theres not much they dont know about them, And everyone I know with subarus now go there, They're aways stacked out with cars.
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 15 Sep 07 at 23:35
power engineering are the ones down here!
1990 velle weekender(Hilli) AAZ

B5 Passat V6 TDI Tiptronic
A3 PD170 s-line soon to be sold asap bloody pd engines!
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Sep 07 at 09:53

I'm afraid I'd go with the Subaru engine every time. They're design and reliability is always going to surpass a 1940s base engine design which has been updated.

Just because one engine knocks due to a lack of servicing from a previous owner doesn't mean the whole subaru engine design is poor. I keep seeing T3s advertised with blown engines with the same problem of rusted cylinder head studs.

Granted to do the engine conversion properly is going to cost more than buying a new VW engine so that's up to the particular owner.

Just my 2 pence worth

MG

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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Sep 07 at 10:19
WBX motors are juicy and have there design problems {but not that many} but if there running correct they pull very well and are very reliable units.

If you want a cheaper increase lets say from a 1.9 wbx, you could convert your van within a couple of hours to a 2.1dj. 500.00 should get you a half decent complete dj engine and 32bhp extra power.

Seems the cheaper option to me.
But hey, each to there own.


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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Sep 07 at 14:34

 

to me if i had a blown dg/dj and i was thinking of more power i would be thinking about a few things...

miles im gona do...

what will it cost to fix..

ive had loads of wbx engines and like the way the drive, but not the fuel consumption. with the price of fuel going up and up.... the amount i use the van would be the biggest factor..  

subaru engines are great for maga miles, but realy they are as specialist as wbx lumps,

im only on my first t3 diesel but i realy think its the way to go, as diesels can do the miles too, im not sure as to cost comparisons but i would think going tdi plus doing the needed gearbox mods would compair to doing a subaru conversion..

 

WHY T3's.... because they are just so adictive, and having one just aint enough
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Sep 07 at 17:28

I think you misunderstood what i was getting at.

To me you buy a VW, not a Subaru.

When your WBX goes it's much cheaper to get a recon VW engine than a recon Subaru.

These Subaru engines seem okay in the short term, but when these engines start going wrong, which they are and will do then the initial "cheap" scrap yard engine is no longer a cheap alternative.

I just wish people would spend a few quid and develope their WBX engines, 'cos Im sure that similar if not more can be eeked from a WBX, and more reliably, cheaper and it's VW.

Just my thoughts.

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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Sep 07 at 18:04
does that make these buses vwaru or subavw or subawagen or volksaru? ill stop as im getting carried away. bottom line its a vw, best to keep it that way...
chips dips chains n whips....
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Sep 07 at 19:17
Originally posted by Baxter Baxter wrote:

I think you misunderstood what i was getting at.

To me you buy a VW, not a Subaru.

When your WBX goes it's much cheaper to get a recon VW engine than a recon Subaru.

These Subaru engines seem okay in the short term, but when these engines start going wrong, which they are and will do then the initial "cheap" scrap yard engine is no longer a cheap alternative.

I just wish people would spend a few quid and develope their WBX engines, 'cos Im sure that similar if not more can be eeked from a WBX, and more reliably, cheaper and it's VW.

Just my thoughts.

So when are you taking delivery of your dyno

I admit it would be very interesting to find out how much more power could be had from a stock 2.1 with a lairy cam and a nice exhaust system...

MG

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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Sep 07 at 19:29
Cheers Si, after that description I think few will be in any doubt of the said vehicle or current owner.
So much for client confidentiality, good job you're not a doctor!!

Ta for calling around for me - much appreciated.
I had the same level of response from engine rebuilders - no-one has any interest in rebuilding one when low mileage scrap engines are so readily available.
Their suggestion was that I move up to later and more powerful engines - and we have discussed the knock on effect on the remainder of the drive train and the brakes (apparently there are some nice cross drilled discs available!!)

I have emailed API who seemed stunned that I should ask for a rebuild when they supply used engines with warranties which can be extended if purchasing a better spec engine.
So I figure that a couple of second hand lumps in the garage will see it powered until it either rots or Kev Horler takes me up/down something from which I never return.

You know my opinion - my Westy is my pride and joy and I will keep it 2.1i.
I will keep the body as sweet as it it now (excepting the odd bollard - Cnut!) and will fund both your kids educations to keeping it up to spec.
However, the "Billy f**kwit" previous owner butchered the van and "converted" it to scooby power.
It is now my project to get it to work like many of the really sweet ones in the US, a couple of which I have seen and the later engines are pretty spectacular in road going vans.

So, I will drop in the engine from Monsho and see what happens.
I may even be tempted to try stripping the old one and see what can be done.
But I am more inclined to get a low mileage one from API with warranty and run that.

If it is VW and is working, then there is merit in keeping it VW.
T3 Westy, T3 Syncro (the ScoobyVelle), New Beetle Cab, 2 x Polos - I have too many projects
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Sep 07 at 19:29

Richard Henry motors in Bradford specialise in Jap motors say it is easier and cheaper to replace than repair these engines because of the cost in labour and parts.

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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Sep 07 at 19:42
Hi Roadmark69 - seems to be the common response.
Guess when they get scarce rebuilds will become a more economic option.
Have been quoted c300 for an engine out of a scrap Legacy.
More powerful engines from Imprezas are more dosh.

PS: why have you got a pic of Stretch as your avatar?
T3 Westy, T3 Syncro (the ScoobyVelle), New Beetle Cab, 2 x Polos - I have too many projects
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Sep 07 at 20:39

Hello Si

Originally posted by Baxter Baxter wrote:

I think you misunderstood what i was getting at.

yup I totally did

To me you buy a VW, not a Subaru.

fair point can't agrue with that!

When your WBX goes it's much cheaper to get a recon VW engine than a recon Subaru.

These Subaru engines seem okay in the short term, but when these engines start going wrong, which they are and will do then the initial "cheap" scrap yard engine is no longer a cheap alternative.

as you know Si too well, people just buy 2nd hand engines cheap or otherwise with little or no knowledge about its past history then chuck it in and expect things to fine from there on. We have all done this(in the past!)- it sometimes works out, mostly it doesn't, hence in the long run costs more.

IMO, I think most folk are scared of the wbx engine, cos of their issues, namely the head studs rusting out. up til recently they have been costly to repair replace. so people have been scared away from em. but if they are serviced their a good engine, just like all engines.

But as most of us know all engines have design problems and their own querks, again scoobies engines are good but not trouble free(on our 2nd one!) Our uk turbo wagon (just about to be put up 4 sale) tuned to 281bhp 106k on the clock, but well maintained, had suffered the 1st & 2nd below issues lst yr. but put right at a fair cost!

leaky cam covers a real pain! not that expensive

front oil seal leak, drop oil on the zorst, burns then stinks, has to be sorted, expenive job!

they seize at about 60k, grey imports very common! reasons but thats another rant altogether  

ever seen a crank from one of these engines, well they snap in half!

 

the point of my rant, i believe doing engine conversions is all well and good but its all about getting the gearing matched correctly, to make the engine run more or less in the same manor as it did from factory. then it should last,otherwise the power band is wrong or if they rev to high for prolonged driving due to crappy gearing they go bang!

I just wish people would spend a few quid and develope their WBX engines, 'cos Im sure that similar if not more can be eeked from a WBX, and more reliably, cheaper and it's VW.

just interested Si what tuning have you seen on these, how far can they be safely pushed before internals need upgrading. i personally enjoy playing with vw lego and not mixing it with mega blocks too!

Just my thoughts.

Yours is a good and interesting point, be good to get the general vibe here.

ps sorry for the rant, but a very interesting topic

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B5 Passat V6 TDI Tiptronic
A3 PD170 s-line soon to be sold asap bloody pd engines!
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Sep 07 at 21:01

Not a rant, just bored of people condemming the WBX as expensive only to replace it with non VW and more expensive, with what seems to be not much of a gain in the reliabity stakes.

Seems very few people will tune the WBX and I 99% sure that similar gains can be had from a WBX, and not cost as much and be more reliable

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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Sep 07 at 22:47

Originally posted by Fastbus Fastbus wrote:


If you want a cheaper increase lets say from a 1.9 wbx, you could convert your van within a couple of hours to a 2.1dj. 500.00 should get you a half decent complete dj engine and 32bhp extra power.


 

I agree, have gone down this route, I would say more than a couple of hours work though by the time you've swapped the loom out, changed the fuel filter, lines and fitted the electric pump.

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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Sep 07 at 22:58

 

if there were easy to get wbx tuning psrts i would have them..

i always wanted to get a 2.1 on a weber alfa setup, i did start building an exhaust in stainless, still have all the tubes and flanges and i realy should finish it..

the 1 downer is that half the upgrades meen the using more fuel, with the right work ie a more modern inj system more power and better mpg could be posible..

WHY T3's.... because they are just so adictive, and having one just aint enough
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Sep 07 at 23:06
Originally posted by T3ADICT T3ADICT wrote:

if there were easy to get wbx tuning psrts i would have them..

lighten and balance, any machine shop should be able to do that.

porting, again...

Cam, Type 1 stuff as i am lead to believe.

eastfalia do a nice tuned exhaust and Germ man mark is also developing one.

It's all out there.

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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Sep 07 at 23:09
and there are 2.3 and 2.4 piston and liner kits... Is it GoWesty that sell a 2.4 engine with a slight power increase and bags more torque?

Simon in Petrol discussion shocker!


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