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Old 10-13-2015, 09:20 PM   #1
Registered User
Join Date: Oct 2015
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 243
'02 Boxster S TLC.

Hi fellow 986ers, I've bought my first Porsche as a non-starting project car sight unseen via an online auction. I just couldn't ignore a lady in distress and when I first spotted it the auction was going to end within 60 seconds so I placed a bid just to extend it a further 10 minutes while I check out the listing. Naturally, all other bidders immediately disappeared without a trace and I win it! What could possibly go wrong eh???

It's done only 78,500 kms and is a TipTronic in Seal Grey and black trim. It has the rear wind deflector and clear indicators.

No service history at all. I'm hoping to find a dealer that recognises the VIN and can fill me in. Probably a long shot.

There are lots of small parts that seem to be missing (I've yet to look in every nook and cranny), which is more of an annoyance than anything else. The frunk latch has been removed, presumably due to the battery alway sgoing flat because of the ignition switch, so that will need attention prior to me driving the car anwyhere.

It needs a new roof as the rear window is split and I really don't fancy stiching in a new one as it may look like rubbish and not have tension. I wonder if a burgundy roof would look good against Seal Grey?

The car has clearly been neglected for some time and my intention is to go right over it mechanically and evaluate where it's at (I'm a qualified mechanic, though I left the industry in '00). I'm also something of an amateur detailer and like a challenge so I'll be tackling the cosmetics as well which will include an attempt at paintless dent repair (my first) as well as scratch repairs and of course paint correction and leather rejuvination.

At this point I'm intending on turning the car over at hopefully a modest profit, but I've not yet driven it and I suspect that may all change very quickly once I get to know her a little better. Or I'll find it's a basket case and I'll be lucky not to lose money :-/

Number one challenge was to confirm why the battery was flat - I'd pre-diagnosed the ignition switch. This guess was on the money. In my eagerness to evaluate the car, I bought one from a Volkswagen dealer near work instead of online so I paid AU$100 too much it seems. At least I know it's not a Chinese knock-off I suppose.

Fully expecting it to now start and run, I was somewhat deflated to find that it cranks ok and almost starts, but not quite.

I also hear an alarming rattling noise from under the engine but thankfully that was some loose and missing exhaust nuts. Relief!!!

I check for spark which is ok and bridge the fuel pump relay and find that there's no change. I try some Aerostart - slight improvement but still no start.

I just spoke to Ivor in the service department at Porsche Centre Melbourne and was blown away at how willing he was to advise me. If that was a Ford dealer they'd have offered no help at all other than suggesting a tow operator to get the car to them.

Ivor has confirmed that the dash light won't come on at all if the key is not recognised and I would have trouble getting the key out again(!).

So it seems that we're ok there. He likes my plan to replace the plugs (AU$100 for NGK double platinums) and also suggested that I drain the tank and put in fresh fuel as I have no idea how long it's been stationary.

He warned me against using Aerostart again.

My gut feeling is good on pursuing the the bad-fuel angle so I'll be taking his advice ASAP.

What it's doing...

Pictures of what I've bought into...

Hopefully good news soon and plenty more updates to come!

Last edited by TrumpyAl; 10-13-2015 at 09:22 PM.
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