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Old 04-30-2012, 10:00 PM   #1
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Metal flakes in oil.

Hi,

I dropped my car of yesterday to have the oil changed and have an IMS guardian installed. The service manager sent me an e-mail today and informed me that there are metal chunks in the oil filter and housing. My mind went right to the IMS bearing failing. They are suggesting that they remove the clutch and flywheel and inspect the IMS and go from there.

Here is my question: Are there any other likely causes to the metal chunks in the oil filter? I am kinda amazed. If the IMS is going out, I got really lucky.

Thanks,

Reed


Last edited by FormulaReed; 04-30-2012 at 10:14 PM.
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Old 04-30-2012, 11:16 PM   #2
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You need to determine if the metal is ferrous (magnetic) or non-ferrous before you can jump to any conclusions. Timing chain/sprocket failure can put ferrous metal in the oil also. Many times the mode of failure can only be determined by tearing down the engine to see what has failed. In any event, you might have caught it in the nick of time.
As I recall, someone at Chris's German Auto Repair in Bellevue has taken Jake's engine rebuilding class last year, if it comes to that.
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Last edited by Spinnaker; 04-30-2012 at 11:41 PM.
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Old 04-30-2012, 11:34 PM   #3
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Good call. Funny, I was thinking about just replacing the IMS anyway, but the clutch only has about 30k on it and I was going to wait un till I had to do the clutch so I thought the IMS guardian would let me enjoy the car more till I had the clutch done. Oh well, that's life.

Spinnaker, you must sail. Do you race? If you do, what boat do you sail on. I have been racing on the Puget Sound and on the lakes for a few years now.
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Old 04-30-2012, 11:54 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FormulaReed View Post
Good call. Funny, I was thinking about just replacing the IMS anyway, but the clutch only has about 30k on it and I was going to wait un till I had to do the clutch so I thought the IMS guardian would let me enjoy the car more till I had the clutch done. Oh well, that's life.

Spinnaker, you must sail. Do you race? If you do, what boat do you sail on. I have been racing on the Puget Sound and on the lakes for a few years now.
I think there is a Formula Reed on the Tbird forum, is that you?
We have two birds on the hard in various states of mayhem, and we are currently sharing a glass bird between 4 of us just so we have something to get on the water with. They also have their boats in various states of repair. Just gotta love all that rotted wood. Don't do any serious racing, just a Duck Dodge every now and then.
BTW, the glass bird is Kintra.
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Last edited by Spinnaker; 04-30-2012 at 11:57 PM.
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Old 05-01-2012, 12:02 AM   #5
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Yep, I own a Thunderbird and I'm on the forums. Mine boat is #1242, named Foghat and is white with a mint green stripe and transom. I am hoping todo some major cockpit and cabin top repairs but I have a bad feeling my car is going to suck up my hobby money for a while.
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Old 05-01-2012, 12:14 AM   #6
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Yep, I know the feeling. Doing the water pump when I get motivated enough. Don't have any excuses left, just got the new pump and two gallons of P-car antifreeze last week. They are just sitting there waiting for me to get off my butt. Oh wait, I stilll need to get some distilled water, so I still have an excuse.
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Old 05-01-2012, 06:38 AM   #7
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Any kind of metal in the oil is bad.
- The larger and lighter particles them self can block oil passages and oil starvation leads to all manner of bad things and accelerates the impending disaster.

The IMS Guardian detects "ferrous Metal particles" in the oil as is circulates past the sensor so bigger chunks are perhaps not detected as well but may be accompanied by finer particles as well which can be detected.

Ferrous would be steel type metals as in some bearings, gears etc.

The aluminum particles will not be detected by the guardian.

I would look at the oil filter for aluminum particles.
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Old 05-01-2012, 09:17 AM   #8
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This is the reason why we ensure the sump plate is pulled during the IMSG install. Do you have pics of the material?
Some material that is non ferrous is normal.. Post the pics and let us see what it looks like. If you install the IMSG the system will warn you of elevated levels of ferromagnetic material.
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Old 05-01-2012, 09:32 AM   #9
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I will post some pics when I get a chance. I have a felling that the IMS has bitten the dust. The shop is taking the trans off to inspect the IMS and they are going to let me know what they find. From what I have read, it sounds like the most likely cause of the metal is the IMS. I am kind of surprised, the car sounded fine and ran well.

This kind of makes me wish I had just had the IMS replaced. The previous owner had the clutch done but just had a factory IMS put back in and the car has only done about 30K miles on the clutch. My plan was to get the IMS guardian for some piece of mind and put an aftermarket IMS in the next time the clutch was due. The IMS guardian really works, it's the only reason the car was in the shop!

R
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Old 05-01-2012, 01:21 PM   #10
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I like to watch and look at my oil as it is being dropped, filter also. I see the same thing as my INDY sees. No e-mails.
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Old 05-04-2012, 05:21 PM   #11
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I went over to the shop yesterday and checked out the oil filter. It did not look nearly as bad as I thought. By the way the shop described it, I thought it was going to be caked in metallic bits.

It's hard to see in the pictures, but there are some bits of metal in the pleats of the filter and some in the housing. I can't get seem to post pics, so here is a link to them.

photo-3 | Flickr - Photo Sharing!
photo-4 | Flickr - Photo Sharing!
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Old 05-04-2012, 07:00 PM   #12
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We've seen a lot worse on here - perhaps the "metal chunks" as described by the service manager have dropped out....
The next thing to do is drop the oil pan and see the resedue in there plus determine if the metal is magnetic or not - this will give you a better understanding of where the flakes are originating from.
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Old 05-04-2012, 10:44 PM   #13
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I talked to the tech and he said that it looked about the same as when I saw it. I really thought it would look like the filter from the Pelican Parts article on IMS failure. The oil pan is coming off next week.

I am just playing it safe. If the IMS is starting to go, I feel pretty lucky. I would much rather replace the bearing than the whole engine.
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Old 06-30-2012, 09:56 AM   #14
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Sorry I have not updated this thread sooner, but I just got the car back and hear is the story.

The shop pulled the gear box and took a look at the IMS bearing and they found this: http://www.flickr.com/photos/38544789@N03/7473551314/


It's a NSK bearing with out any seals on either side. Not the factory bearing. It did not have any play and felt pretty good. I could feel a little spot of roughness but it felt fine to me.

Because the car was all part, I had them put a LN bearing and replace the RMS. It was not leaking bad (never left any oil on the ground, but i could see a little bit)but I figured I might as well have it done.

So I got the car back yesterday and took it for a drive. Ran great and I was really happy. Un till I looked at the rear bumper. It was covered in oil. I looked under the car and it looks like the RMS is now leaking like sieve. I drove about 80 miles round trip. I got in touch with the shop and they think the AOS has failed. Only thing is, I don't have any of the symptoms of a failing AOS. Not a ton of smoke, I can easily remove the oil cap when the engine is running, no CEL, no bad idle, no loss of performance.

I am taking it back to the shop on monday and will see what they say.
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Old 06-30-2012, 10:26 AM   #15
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NSK was one of the manufacturers of the bearing. apparently they shipped the bearing to porsche without lube and with only one of the seals. porsche then filled the bearing and sealed it before placing it in the engine....

but now you've got the LN IMSB and your engine didn't grenade, so it doesn't matter anymore.

**EDIT** just saw that you mentioned there were no seals on EITHER side. so it's possible a PO removed the seals way back when (before LN's solution) allowing the engine oil to circulate hoping it would extend its life.



Who has done an IMS change (New Oil Fed Design Idea) - Pelican Parts Technical BBS
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Old 06-30-2012, 10:31 AM   #16
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I did not get a pic of it, but the bearing did not have a seal on either side.

I am glad I did the IMS, but the car is leaking so much oil I can't drive it.
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Old 06-30-2012, 10:56 AM   #17
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Are you getting the work done by a Porsche specialist?
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Old 06-30-2012, 11:07 AM   #18
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Yep. I am not ready to flame the shop yet, but they are a well known shop that came recommended to me from the place I took my 911 to.

I get the feeling I am going to get screwed this time, but I am keeping my fingers crossed that it will work out.
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Old 06-30-2012, 11:55 AM   #19
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remember, if they used the porsche part (is there any other for the RMS?) it is warrantied for 24 months, unlimited miles.

if the shop is any good, they should provide a warranty for workmanship. mine does 12 months, 12k miles.
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Old 06-30-2012, 11:59 AM   #20
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Originally Posted by milliemax View Post
I like to watch and look at my oil as it is being dropped, filter also. I see the same thing as my INDY sees. No e-mails.
+1 on this. I am a natural sceptic and it would be part of the arrangement that if I had the IMS done, that I would like to see the removal. If they don't like me there then I go with somebody else. I now do my own oil changes. I am now way more involved with my own car than I have ever been before!

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