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Old 02-10-2018, 06:47 AM   #1
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Good shadetree mechanic. Lousy Boxster mechanic.

For the better part of the past two months, I've been removing my old engine, transferring the tiptronic wiring harness and other stuff from it to a replacement motor, and putting in the new motor.

The motor got slightly damage in shipping (cam solenoid wire sheared off) and I ended up transferring a variocam solenoid into it. The whole process on this project has been two steps forward and one step back. I made a cam holding tool, changed the solenoid, and put the camcover back on. Not hard when the motor is sitting on a furniture dolly on the floor of the carport.

I got the engine in, and started. The green plugs for the cams promptly popped out and spewed Mobil 1 all over the pavement. Engine runs great other than this little defect.

After a day or two of messing with it, I looked up the problem on the internet. It appears that in my enthusiasm for sealing the cam cover up with goop, I got carried away and blocked the drain hole for the right engine bank. Oil pressure must be good, it'll pop those plugs out in seconds!

So back to the drawing board. Today, I'm gonna start disconnecting stuff so I can lower the engine down enough to remove the cam cover, clean off all the new-old sealant and and more carefully reseal it up. I had a bunch of credits at Amazon and ordered a couple of new cam plugs.

Woe is me, I guess. At least the weather is nice in Tucson. Discouragement and project fatigue are setting in, but can't put it aside. Hot weather is in 3 months--and I'd like to drive with the top down for a while.



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Old 02-10-2018, 07:32 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by Brian in Tucson View Post
.. It appears that in my enthusiasm for sealing the cam cover up with goop, I got carried away and blocked the drain hole for the right engine bank. ...
I used to love sealant. I figured, the more I used, the better the seal... Right?
General rule of Boxster mech'ing: do NOT use sealant on gaskets, or rubber plugs. If you are assembling metal to metal, use the minimum amount sealant to mate the parts.

By the time you get this car done, you'll be great at this stuff.
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Old 02-10-2018, 11:17 AM   #3
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Don't get discouraged!! Take a break, drink a beer.

One of the benefits of a mess up is discovering that things take a lot less time and effort second time around.

About 5 or 6 years ago, I pulled the head on my 84 Alfa, which had burned an exhaust valve. It took me days to get the head off...lots of stuff to disconnect on the intake side. I had the head shaved, along with new cams and valves from a great Alfa guru in Pensacola, FL.

Upon reassembly, there are some little o-rings (maybe 5/16" diameter or so) that sit on the block and seal oil passages between block and head. While lowering the head onto the block, the head hung on the studs. While I reached for a tool, the head dropped the remaining 4" onto the block. Being an idiot, and wanting to get the car back on the road, I decided to go ahead and reassemble the motor, hoping for the best. The car ran great but after about a thousand miles, I discovered I had an intermix. I knew what it was (had already re-torqued the head at 500 miles).
I was so bummed. I just wanted to enjoy my car.
After the correct amount of feeling sorry for myself, I dug into pulling the head off again.
Second time around, I had the head off in about three hours. Sure enough, one of he o-rings was pinched. I got stuff cleaned up and had the car reassembled the next day....at least that's how I want to remember it.
All good!
Except....
A few months later, unable to leave well enough alone, I decided to use my expertise to screw with the cam timing. My improvements led to a bent a valve.
Off with the head!!
It really should have been off with my head. Anyway, the car has been back together for years and runs great. I've learned a lot.
So far, I have no DYI horror stories with the Box, but I haven't had to dig in to the point that you and lots of others on this board have done.
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Old 02-11-2018, 07:49 PM   #4
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We've all been there - don't lose heart, you can get it done and be the better for it!

25 years ago I had a Toyota 4x4 pickup truck which blew a head gasket (22R motor) so I thought I'd pull the head, replace the gasket, and be back on the road in no time. It was a good plan except for part where I cracked the head and damaged the block when I pulled the head. Seriously, I couldn't have f'd it up more if I tried.

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Old 02-12-2018, 04:44 PM   #5
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I got the cam cover off today. As expected the drains from the cams were both blocked. Too much goop! Tomorrow I'll de-oil the cover, and conservatively re-goop and install the cam cover.

The fasteners the little trolls in Germany use are such a hassle. Torx and whatever they call those 12 point inside out torx. Tough to work with. I found that an 8mm hex fits nicely over the inside out torx. Much faster and I can use my sockets and driver of choice--1/4 in drive. When I put it back together, I'll switch over to all hex. My engine, my choice. You can't get those goofy fasteners from the side with a ratcheting box end wrench.

That which doesn't kill you makes you strong.

Looking forward to driving the car, maybe this coming weekend. Got a BMW R90-6 waiting for some servicing.
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Old 02-12-2018, 07:04 PM   #6
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A 1/16" bead should be more than enough.
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Old 02-13-2018, 05:45 AM   #7
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Hey, it's not a project if you don't have to buy a new tool.
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Old 02-13-2018, 06:11 AM   #8
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You learn from failing. That's what I tell myself when I throw my tools across the garage, cursing like a manic
It true but still painfull

My first car, 350 V8, lost a cylinder. So I had the brilliant Idea to remove the valve springs - OPS - valve dropped in. I pull the head, coolant every where.

I ended up putting in another motor because I just F-ed this one up so bad.
Good side, it was a 400 cid race motor I dragged out from some farmers barn. Chain tied to my bumper dragging out.
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Old 02-15-2018, 04:35 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dghii View Post
Don't get discouraged!!
It really should have been off with my head. Anyway, the car has been back together for years and runs great. I've learned a lot.
So far, I have no DYI horror stories with the Box, but I haven't had to dig in to the point that you and lots of others on this board have done.
Well, I carefully put sealer on the surfaces that required it and put the valve cover back on today. Not so good about doing a 1/16th bead, but I carefully squeezed it out and spread it with my finger. A thin coat. Put the cover back on and torqued the perimeter bolts to 120 in. lb. with minimal squeeze out sealer. Tomorrow I'll retorque it in proper order and put it all back together. need to solve a coolant leak, as well. Lots of tidying up to do.

Been raining kinda hard here--over an inch in two days. So I've been doing other stuff--rain days.

Feeling pretty pleased. should be fine. Even a reclaimed beater Boxster is a lovely thing!

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