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Old 02-13-2015, 01:06 PM   #1
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Cam deviations - Variocam tensioner pad time...

So up until just recently I thought that my Cam deviations were holding steady. Each time I monitored them with the Durametric (with car fully warmed up) they were rock steady, but I didn't really realize that over time they have been moving. I only recently started recording them, and I found these records:

8/31/2014....113,019.....Bank 1 -5.61...Bank 2 -6.25
12/25/2014...114,898....Bank 1 -6.06...Bank 2 -6.37
2/8/2015.......115,696....Bank 1 -6.19...Bank 2 -6.38

Bank 1 looks like it is moving pretty fast. In my previous oil changes with the old canister style filter I never found anything when I cut and spread out the filter, and I do have an oil change in October 2014 with the spin on type that I haven't gotten around to opening, and I wonder if I will find some stuff there. (I am doing it this weekend) I dropped the sump pan in May 2014 and found a tiny bit of plastic bits and one slightly bigger piece in the oil pickup filter, and some silicon strands but otherwise it was very clean.

I talked with a couple of shops today and they are reviewing my options.

Shop 1 is reviewing my service history, deviations, etc and is going to get back to me with a recommendation but it will probably be replace the variocam pads and inspect everything related, and then decide from there. The lead from this shop has been through Jake's classes and is highly recommended.

Shop 2 says it is usually around $1800 to get in there and replace those pads, but for $4800 they will take the engine out, open it up, replace all pads, seals, gaskets, etc and inspect/clean everything while they are in there... I talked with him and he seems very knowledgeable as well. A difference I guess between the two would be that this shop prefers a roller bearing type IMS (IMS Eternal Fix?) Here is the list (I may be leaving some out, typing from my notes):
  • They drain and save the coolant as well as the power steering fluid unless instructed otherwise.
  • Remove crank shaft and inspect and measure clearance.
  • Inspect the pistons and rings for any kind of damage and clean the groves .
  • Replace the connecting rod bearings and wrist pin clips.
  • Remove cam shafts then disassemble cam chain tensioner and replace the chain rails
  • Remove valves and cut seats if needed ,then lap all valves
  • Replace all gaskets and seals
  • Install a roller bearing type IMS bearing .
  • Remove oil pump and inspect for wear.
  • Test the oil pressure relive valve and drill a hole into center of shaft in order to provide oil to the IMS bearing. [??? Has anyone ever heard of this, is that a typo from my notes?]( This will only be done when we use their IMS bearing)
  • Reassemble engine and perform a leak down test on all cylinders.
  • Install a new oil separator and the cross over hose that attaches to it.
  • Replace the vacuum fittings, lines and check valve.

I have a new waterpump, thermostat, and LN Dual row bearing installed around 12,000 miles ago so that stuff would not be changed so there would be some discount. On one hand if I am going inside the engine I feel like it would make sense to go all in, which is a lot more than $4800. Heck for $4800 I could probably get another engine and just drive the heck out of it... I could almost get a whole other Boxster for that. But if $4800 totally gets in there and cleans everything out, inspects, and replaces the items described above... That actually doesn't seem too bad, especially if it catches something and prevents a future blow up.

Any thoughts?

And when I do the variocam pads, is there anything else that is a no brainer to replace while in there? (Timing chains? I have a 5 chain motor?)

Thanks,

Steve


Last edited by steved0x; 02-13-2015 at 01:08 PM.
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Old 02-13-2015, 01:26 PM   #2
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Another option, since you are just slightly over the wear limit of 6 on one bank is to do nothing. While you are rightly concerned because the numbers are creeping up, I think you still have some time. Mine are at about 4.8 and 5.4 IIRC but they have been rock steady for the 32k miles I've had the car and I'm certainly doing nothing until it gets much worse, eg, tons of plastic bits in the oil and numbers in the 7 range.

Are you absolutely sure you measured when the car was, hot, fully warmed up, as in driving it moderately hard for an hour? My numbers are way high when the car is not fully warmed up.
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Old 02-13-2015, 01:29 PM   #3
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Good chance you need nothing more than new & improved VarioCam wear pads. Go with shop #1. You may need lifters or chain tensioners too.

Shop #2 sounds like Vertex, do not go there.
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Old 02-13-2015, 01:36 PM   #4
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If its vertex, run away. Many years ago I had a 944 that I took there to have the timing belt inspected since I had recently purchased the car. They charged me for the inspection, said the belt was fine and 3 weeks later the timing belt broke, requiring the heads to be rebuilt because of bent valves.

The timing belts were so old and worn they were almost crumbling. Clearly, they never even checked the belts.
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Old 02-13-2015, 06:46 PM   #5
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My car has similar numbers although they changed for the worse more slowly. $1800 is the price I was quoted. So your first quote is in the ballpark.

I think your choice is an easy one. I don't see how the second shop that can possibly do all the work and replace the parts on your list for a couple of thousand more than the pad job alone.

For example, when the shop goes in to change the pads, they should inspect the variocam solenoids and the lifters. Changing out the solenoids will add $400 to $500 to the bill. The lifters are another story. If they show wear, its a ton of bucks to buy a complete set and replace them I think the parts alone cost about $1200. The same shop which quoted me $1900 for the pads told me new lifters would add about $3000 parts and labor to the bill.

I'm positive I would NOT change out the IMSB since your put in a dual row one not to long ago.
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Old 02-13-2015, 07:20 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by san rensho View Post
Another option, since you are just slightly over the wear limit of 6 on one bank is to do nothing. While you are rightly concerned because the numbers are creeping up, I think you still have some time. Mine are at about 4.8 and 5.4 IIRC but they have been rock steady for the 32k miles I've had the car and I'm certainly doing nothing until it gets much worse, eg, tons of plastic bits in the oil and numbers in the 7 range.

Are you absolutely sure you measured when the car was, hot, fully warmed up, as in driving it moderately hard for an hour? My numbers are way high when the car is not fully warmed up.
Warmed up, yes, but I am not sure about it being hot/driven to an hour. I will try and do that this weekend. I did have about 15-20 minutes on it this last time with a fueling break about halfway in that time period. Good points. Thank you.
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Old 02-13-2015, 07:26 PM   #7
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Not Vertex although it is in FL. (Vertex is south fl right?) The roller ims shop has folks formerly long term from Brumos, something with a 6 in the name I think (and I don't know the name of the other shop either, just the names Carl & Eric). Both invited me down to the shop to see some of the work in progress but neither are close enough for it to be a casual thing. Both very highly recommended too.
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Old 02-14-2015, 10:45 AM   #8
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I wouldn't be in a hurry to change the pads. They are slightly out of spec but shouldn't affect performance much at this point. The pads get rutted and change the deviation slightly but you should watch for beige/brown plastic bits in your oil which could indicate disintegration. I changed my own pads but it was a big job for a DIYer. It depends how hands-on you are.
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Old 02-20-2015, 01:36 PM   #9
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Here are my pads at 96k, look well passed there sell by date
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Old 02-21-2015, 09:08 PM   #10
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"told me new lifters would add about $3000 parts and labor to the bill."
There has been some previous discussion of using lifters made by the same supplier to Porsche(INA) that are much cheaper. They are a direct interchange number for BMW and several other vehicles.
Search for " HL6330" They are $8.34 ea from Rock Auto minus discount. They are shipped from England.
I am not yet able to confirm they work perfectly but they certainly fit perfectly. I bought and fitted 24 as a very risky experiment.
FCP Euro sells the correct(?) item for $25 ,the Dealer charges over $40 .
Be careful diagnosing lifter 'ticking' on the M96 .It is easy to confuse the tick with the beginning of rod bearing wear.
If you talk to M96 rebuilders they will tell you that they often find many of the lifters on 100k engines are jammed(the tappet is hammered into the bucket).You can free up the tappet with force but it would only get hammered again - so why?
INA had several part number revisions and seem to have finally produced a reliable part but old lifters are suspect in my very limited experience.
I spent many ,many hours sleuthing to find the interchange and even discussed it with INA/Schaeffler. Not one person would offer the slightest bit of help. Nobody on any forum could confirm the HL6330 would or would not work. Seems very odd in view of the need and the savings. So perhaps it will be a very expensive mistake.
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Old 02-21-2015, 11:22 PM   #11
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Just had a look at that part number and yes it does fit Porsche and wide selection of engines, and they do seem to be fairly cheap over here.
Is there anyway of testing these lifters once there out, sure i read an article somewhere that your suppose to be able to pump them with your finger, all the one's i removed from my 2.5 were rock solid with no movement even after a few days out of the car, the engine had no ticking noises and ran very quiet, so is it possible my lifters were stuck or sticking.
I'm rebuilding a 3.4 996 unit at the moment and was going to use the old lifters, but now reading this wondering if it's best to get a new set

Last edited by whitecliffs; 02-21-2015 at 11:55 PM.
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Old 02-22-2015, 01:38 PM   #12
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With a tip of the hat to San Rensho, I just took a 2 hour drive and the measured my cam deviations....

Drum roll...

-5.84 and -6.25

Essentially unchanged in the last 13,000 or so miles. I also cut open my oil filter and it was spotless. So just warming up the car until the water temp needle rises to the 180 is definitely not enough...

Is there wear? Yes... But as long as it holds steady I am going to just watch and wait...

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