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Old 07-15-2015, 08:39 PM   #1
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Under the Knife

My new to me '02 986S is having a bunch of preventative maintenance done:

-LN Single Row Pro upgrade kit
-RMS
-New dual mass flywheel
-Clutch/pressure plate? More on that later
-AOS
-Water pump
-Thermostat
-Coolant flush
-Gbox 2nd gear popout detent kit

On the lift:


New RMS installed, IMS installation tool in place


The old IMS


Surprisingly, the old IMS felt like it had no play whastsoever. I was quite surprised to see the seals looking like they were mostly intact. The car looks to have had a clutch replaced within the past 10-15k miles (the friction disc has lots of life left), so I almost wonder if they installed a replacement IMS at that point.

I look forward to getting it back, hopefully by the end of the week.

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Old 07-16-2015, 11:53 AM   #2
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I had most of that done to my 01 S when I got it last year also. I haven't touched the water pump yet but it is always on my mind when I leave town. Why did you decide to do the water pump as preventative? My SA told me not too.
Did you check the front motor mount? Mine was trash and I hear it is common too. I also had to change a cam seal but not sure that is common. Also one half shaft was needed.
I changed my original clutch but did not do the dual mass flywheel. What does that buy you?
Oh and brakes. Mine needed it all including rotors.
Mine came from the east and needed some exhaust work. The aftermarket exhaust I put on it was far and away the most fun improvement. Love the sound and seat of the pants I swear I picked up 20 HP and 20 lbs. of torque at least.
Hopefully it is good to go now for a while!

Enjoy!
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Old 07-16-2015, 09:00 PM   #3
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The front motor mount, alternator, serpentine belt/rollers, plugs/plug tubes, 1 halfshaft were replaced 2 years/7500 miles ago. With all of this work, I should be one coolant expansion tank away from dealing with most of the typical M96/Getrag 466 issues, I think.
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Old 07-16-2015, 09:03 PM   #4
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The water pump was called out as seeping during the PPI. Also, the coolant was due for replacement.

The dual mass flywheel cannot be resurfaced, and if it fails the diagnostic it needs to be replaced. Here's a video demonstrating the diagnostic process:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E1CQ4Zyc1_U
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Old 08-18-2015, 03:46 PM   #5
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Quick update:

The Box is off to the best alignment shop in Seattle, Tru Line, to determine what's up with the front suspension/alignment that's wearing the tires so aggressively on the inside edge and, once corrected, to have new front tires mounted. Also to chase down a persistent knocking noise in the LR suspension (that I figured was a bad track rod joint).

Good news: Front steering/suspension components are in good nick.

The not so great news: The shop has been trying to track down the LR suspension noise. First, the found the control arm had a bad ball joint, so that's been replaced. Didn't solve for the noise issue though. They swapped out the track rod for a new unit; no change + the old one looked fine.

Then they determined the LR strut is the source of the noise, likely due to a bad strut mount.

So...just bit the bullet and ordered 4 new Bilsteins to be installed with new strut mounts, etc.

I guess I'm just getting everything done that I'd planned to do over 12-18 months up front...much to the dismay of my ever-diminishing savings account. But I'm sure the car's going to be transformed in terms of the drive.
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Old 08-18-2015, 11:09 PM   #6
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Greeting from one greater Seattleite to another. (I am on the Eastside though.)

Hopefully before blaming the rear struts or strut mounts on the noise, they have ruled out the rear swaybar link joints. Much less labor and part cost to change those links out than to change the rear struts and mounts. It's also not a good sign IMO when mechanics throw parts at a problem without proper diagnosis, IMO.

I just changed the struts on my '01 with 110k miles, and the strut mounts all looked to be in good shape, FWIW.

At least you'll get some fresh and new shocks out of the deal. Best of luck and hope you get a good opportunity after she's all fixed up to enjoy some of the nice "top down" weather we've been getting lots of recently!
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Old 08-20-2015, 08:33 AM   #7
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Hello on the other side of the lake! The car spent some quality time over there at Chris's German after I bought it.

The car is at Tru Line. They and Omni in Kirkland are the best shops in the region. They were doing suspension work on a 996 racecar when I dropped it off...I'm not too worried about them working on my grocery getter 986.

I'd checked the sway bar end links prior to taking it into the shop; they don't have much (if any) slop in them. It really sounded like a track rod, and initially that's what I told them to look closely at. They swapped it out & drove it--no difference.

At 12+ years/nearly 70k miles, it felt like it was due for new dampers--high speed transitions weren't as crisp as they could be. I would have likely gone through all of this within the next year anyway due to that. I'm not thrilled with spending all of the $ now, but best to get it done and enjoy it to the fullest (before it gets stuffed away for Winter).

I'll replace all of the end links and swaybar bushings over the Winter as part of the other PM work I want to do (brake/PS fluid flush, cleaning the radiators, etc).
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Old 08-20-2015, 05:34 PM   #8
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Sounds like your box is going to be pretty sweet when the suspension is rebuilt. When I bought my '01 base a few months ago (with standard suspension, not the M030) I was very disappointed with the handling, for what I expected the Porsche Boxster to do. (I do have autocross racing background, so have certain, maybe high expectations ). The suspension was quite floppy and got very easily unsettled when say, trying to shift in the middle of a corner or doing any input that wasn't ever so gentle and slow. Rebuilding the front suspension made a huge improvement! Can drive the car the way I expect a Porsche to be driven now.

Unfortunately the rear shocks I had ready to installed turned out to be defective (I noticed before I installed them, luckily), so I have more rear suspension work in my future. (I now have new GOOD rear shocks - complete with shock dyno plots to prove it - ready to go, as well as new trailing arms on order, to hopefully deal with a similar rear suspension noise issue you're talking about in this thread) and need to order a few more small bits like CV joint bolts before I tackle that job.

I have heard of tru-line (are they the shop with frame straightening capabilities?). But haven't actually been there. Same with Omni. As a member of the local racing community, Fordahl motorsports (used to be in east side, but I understand they moved to Seattle near SPU now) comes to mind as being surely competent in working with lots of Porsches and especially Porsche alignments. On the Eastside, have been also impressed looking at facilities of Cantrell motorsports (plenty of high end cars in there). I tend to prefer doing my own wrenching if I can justify it. I used the local firestore to get my alignment, as they had a pretty economical "lifetime alignment" I can use as I do more the rear suspension work. (And maybe if I start autocrossing this car, I'll want to play with the alignment some.)

I plan on daily driving my boxster even through the winter time. It's my first Porsche, first convertible and am already having lots of fun with it. Best of luck with the tru-line work, and hope you enjoy the car lots afterward!

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Old 08-20-2015, 07:32 PM   #9
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I like wrenching on my own cars too! Just a question of when I have time. I did a bunch of work on my old Miata, which was blissfully easy to work on.

What kind of shocks did you end up using? I looked at getting the ROW M030 setup, but I wouldn't be able to get it quickly enough. I've had very good experiences with Bilsteins in the past, and given this car will be mostly street driven (and I'd like to use it on long trips without it killing my kidneys), I figured this would be a good compromise. We'll find out tomorrow I suppose.

I'd had a great experience with Tru Line in getting my Miata set up for a mix of road driving and autocross. I highly recommend their expertise if you ever get serious about autocross/DE setup with your car.
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Old 08-21-2015, 08:44 AM   #10
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Happy Friday! I finally got the car back. Per the guy at Tru Line, "You basically have a new car." Where have I heard that before...

Parts replaced:

-All 4 struts
-Strut bearings (F/R)
-Pivot bearings (F)
-Front thrust arms (chasing down the noise, didn't charge me for the part or labor)
-LR track rod (chasing down the noise, didn't charge me for the part or labor)
-LR control arm (had a loose ball joint)
-Front tires
-4 wheel alignment (duh, but wow was it out of alignment up front...and it was just done 2 years/7500mi ago)

I've only driven it about 15 miles with a little in-city and then 13mi of highway. Initial impressions:

-Steering is much smoother when stopped; I chalk that up to the new strut bearings up front
-No more noises! Hallelujah. (Apart from the damn headrest windscreens and center windscreen, argh)
-I will need more time to assess the Bilsteins once the new front tires get broken in a bit. From the short drive I've had so far, body control is MUCH improved, they are pretty busy at low speed over in-city pavement but not uncomfortable at freeway speeds with a much better sense of control. Overall this feels like about 75% of the US spec M030 car I drove (which felt a bit too harsh for comfortable in-city driving), which is a good compromise.
-Steering feel at highway speeds is much improved. Previously it felt like there was at least 3/4" of free play at dead center that made me worried the rack was bad; that's eliminated now. The car also tracks much better.

It's filthy, so if the weather holds over the weekend I'll give it some cleanup time and drive it as much as possible.
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Old 08-21-2015, 09:57 AM   #11
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Very nice! Love to see photos and hear about Boxsters being restored to/improved on their original performance. Still, the costs of such repairs would prohibit many owners from doing so. Glad you got it done!
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Old 08-21-2015, 12:09 PM   #12
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It's still a gearbox rebuild away from being back to optimal performance; 2nd gear still doesn't engage cleanly every time. But I'll put that off as long as I can.

The only other things now are PM stuff; sway bar end links and bushings, brake fluid flush, PS fluid flush, new front undertray (mine's pretty beat up), pull the front bumper and clean the debris out of the rads + paint the ducting.

Overall, I think I will be much, much happier getting this work done up front--and then enjoying the car over the next few years until I move up into a 981 Cayman S/GTS--than doing it bit by bit, hating the fact it's not done yet every time I drive it.

That's my rationalization, at least.

Going to clean it up tomorrow; if I do what I think I'm going to, I'll take/post some photos in a separate thread.
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Old 08-21-2015, 07:49 PM   #13
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Nice - well having it done professionally certainly got it job done quickly! Interesting that the rear noise ended up being a bad balljoint. I'm curious if you know whether the boot was in tact, or had it been torn? I've read threads here where I seem to recall people injecting grease into the noisy, dry boots (piercing the boot with a syringe-like injector, apparently) to quiet noisy and dry balljoints. I undid the upper boot clip and dabbed additional synthetic grease in all the balljoints and tie rod ends when at rebuilt mine, (and rotated the joints 90 degrees for good measure), so hopefully that preventive maintenance will make them last.

I went with Koni yellows/sports. Koni was very good about replacing the rears (which I noticed on the first pair I got, had obviously very uneven compression damping). The Bilsteins they put OE on these cars and also available aftermarket do seem to be good quality and also as they are all twin-tubes, quite street able without too much high-frequency noise like monotubes shocks are known to have.

I need to clean out junk in front of my radiators too. And the shifter is a bit sloppy. And the paint is a bit swirled. And the accelerator pedal is a bit sticky. And the shifting is difficult when cold (which I'll address hopefully with some new fluid here pretty soon). Aside from that though, its pretty good. Sure looks great, and really fun to drive with the top down, and my wife loves it (she's always wanted a Porsche, so now we finally get to "live the dream" ).

Edit: oh almost forgot to add, there is some rattling in the exhaust when warmed up. (Maybe some cat guts get loosened up when they warm up?). I think the car had an air-oil separate failure and replacement right before I got it, so maybe that was hard on the cats. No problems with emission, CEL, or performance (at least that I can tell). I did diagnose some exhaust leaks ("ticking" / clicking noises) in the exhaust joints near the mufflers (aftermarket) and OE secondary cats. Car is a bit "droney" with its current modified exhaust setup, but sounds awesome above about 3k.

Last edited by jakeru; 08-21-2015 at 07:58 PM.
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Old 08-22-2015, 09:21 AM   #14
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Interesting. I thought about Konis, but realized most Konis are a ******************** to adjust so I didn't quite see the point. Also I know Bilstein is factory Porsche fitment (as is Sachs), so figured that should be a decent match to the springs. Did you stick with the OEM springs or go aftermarket?

I also have a sticky acccelerator pedal. Something I'm probably going to address today, as well as the squeak in the clutch pedal which is driving me nuts.

What do you have in terms of exhaust setup?
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Old 08-23-2015, 09:45 PM   #15
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I sourced a set of US-spec M030 springs and put those on with the Konis. The car had the normal (not M030) suspension setup originally.

As for the exhaust setup, it's pretty much the popular, commonly available aftermarket dual mufflers setup along with the stock secondary cats and U-pipes. Here's a pic right after I polished the tips and mufflers:

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