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Old 02-27-2013, 05:12 AM   #1
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What are my IMS options?

I've went through and read as many IMS threads as I could and I'm a bit mystified as to what solution works best for me.

1997 Boxster 2.5L
79k miles
No leaks, no bad sounds

Clutch is about gone, so I figure it's best to replace the RMS and check out the IMS. I have no room to do this myself so I have to bring it to a shop. Still haven't decided between an indie or a dealership.

My question concerning the IMS is what should I (the shop) do? If I have the dual row and almost 80k on it, am I in the 95% that is all good?

My options with my bank book (roughly $3K) are:

1. Check it out visually. If it appears in good shape, don't do anything. From what I have read, I believe I have the dual row bearing being a 1997 and the duals don't seem to have the problem that the singles do and I'm worrying for nothing. I could use the money I save towards getting the Johnny Danger "Lucky Charms" effects on my car.

2. Replace it while they are in there for good measure. I don't know if there is any real issue with the dual row, but if there is, the peace of mind may be worth it.

Either way I go, I'll be installing the thingy that warns you if you are getting metal chunks this summer when I'll have more room / time / cash.

If there is already a thread with this information that I overlooked, please feel free to let me know and I'll remove this post.

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Old 02-27-2013, 05:59 AM   #2
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For $3K, you should be able to replace the IMSB, RMS and clutch using the dual row IMS Retrofit by LN Engineering. My shop quoted me $2.5K out the door.

Dual row bearings do fail although less frequently than single row bearings. By replacing the IMSB when you replace the clutch, you'll save a ton in labor costs.
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Old 02-27-2013, 05:59 AM   #3
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When you do the clutch, do not hesitate replace both your RMS and IMS (use the LN Engineering unit).
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Old 02-27-2013, 06:14 AM   #4
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I do know of another option for sourcing a dual row ceramic bearing that is half the cost. Found the guy through our local Porsche chapter as he has supplied about a dozen IMS bearings to other members who have done their. PM me if your interested (I am not associated with this company in anyway, I simply got my IMS from them and was very pleased).
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Old 02-27-2013, 07:03 AM   #5
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Not sure of the price & I think you have to go to Jake's shop to have it done, but Flat 6 Innovations now has the "Final Solution" that adds oil lubrication to the bearings:
What's new at Flat 6 Innovations
If not that, I agree with the guys above - LN bearings/RMS/ while doing clutch.
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Old 02-27-2013, 08:02 AM   #6
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I also have a '97, but don't need a clutch. If I did, I would go with the Pelican part.
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Old 02-27-2013, 08:26 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by runjmc2 View Post
I also have a '97, but don't need a clutch. If I did, I would go with the Pelican part.
Why? .
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Old 02-27-2013, 10:07 AM   #8
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If doing the clutch, by all means upgrade the IMSB. It's a lot of effort and labor to drop the trans, so best to do both. I just got my 04 S back from doing same at 60k mi. Single row bearing and it was intact, but felt "wobbly". My mechanic said it was indicative of wear. Replaced with the LN kit. While it's not the final solution, I'm confident I can go many thousands of miles without worrying about the IMSB. There are other engine failure modes of course, but I feel like I've reduced the risk profile considerably. peace of mind was worth a lot to me.
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Old 02-27-2013, 10:50 AM   #9
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I was under the impression that all the '97's were already dual row. Is that not the case? Wait. I think I get it. It's a wear item and should be replaced as long as I'm in there regardless of whether it's a single, double or triple. Until I can get the fancy Jake Raby upgrade thing, I should plan on replacing it every 50k-ish miles.

So I'm looking at:
$649.00 LN Engineering retrofit thing
$499.85 Clutch 3 piece kit and guide from Pelican
$13.75 RMS from Pelican
$1162.60

And then find a shop that will let me buy the parts and just pay them the labor involved. Sound about right? Might be able to afford that Lucky Charm pattern sooner than later!

Last edited by CoBeerToad; 02-27-2013 at 11:08 AM.
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Old 02-27-2013, 11:06 AM   #10
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'97s are dual row. You have three IMSB choices:
  1. Porsche stock bearing
  2. Pelican bearing (beefier than stock)
  3. LN Engineering IMS Retrofit bearing (ceramic)

IMHO the LN choice is better than the Pelican option which is better than stock. The ultimate fix is the IMS Solution, but dual row cars can't use it.
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Old 02-27-2013, 11:41 AM   #11
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You are overlooking the obvious: The Pelican bearing is a stock bearing, but in a single row configuration only, and used with a "spacer" in dual row applications. The single row design is the weakest and most failure prone style IMS; so you are taking out one of the strongest designs and replacing it with one of the weakest to save a few bucks................
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Old 02-27-2013, 11:42 AM   #12
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Clutch cost could go higher in parts if you need a new flywheel for example. Can't tell until you get things apart. Do you have a good shop/mechanic with IMSB experience? I think experience and competence is critical for this kind of job. The shop I used keeps a stock of the LN kits and he marked up about 50 bucks which I didn't think was too bad. I'd just approach it like any big job- detailed estimate up front, call and discuss any extras, return all removed parts, etc.
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Old 02-27-2013, 12:08 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CoBeerToad View Post
So I'm looking at:
$649.00 LN Engineering retrofit thing
$499.85 Clutch 3 piece kit and guide from Pelican
$13.75 RMS from Pelican
$1162.60

And then find a shop that will let me buy the parts and just pay them the labor involved. Sound about right? Might be able to afford that Lucky Charm pattern sooner than later!
might be a caveat with buying your own parts. the shop may tell you to pound sand if there's an issue. If they install incorrectly and don' want to fess up, that buying of your own parts could open the door to a CYA for them. And I doubt the savings of buying retail on your own is really worth all that.
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Last edited by Perfectlap; 02-27-2013 at 12:10 PM.
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Old 02-27-2013, 12:11 PM   #14
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Doing nothing is an option. I did not replace my IMSB when I did the clutch at 92K miles. Everything is fine at 126,000 miles.

In terms of full disclosure, I have no problem replacing the entire engine if it explodes tomorrow.

I don't want to start an argument. Just relaying my personal experience. And similar to what the investment brochures say; my past experience is no indication of your future performance. To each his own IMSB path.
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Last edited by thstone; 02-27-2013 at 12:14 PM.
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Old 02-27-2013, 12:33 PM   #15
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After an obscene amount of research myself and airing on the conservative side and having a roughly $3k budget, I would go for the final solution (after doing your own research) by Jake Raby in N.C. and go for it. 2nd option is to replace with the LN product (they are in Illinois also) and then in a few years if the "final solution" is what it says to be then when you replace your next clutch go for it. also, from what I have read, JFP knows his stuff so maybe you may want to bounce this off him.
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Old 02-27-2013, 12:39 PM   #16
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Final Solution is not a good name for a German vehicle contraption.
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Old 02-27-2013, 12:46 PM   #17
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Ha!.....LOL!
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Old 02-27-2013, 01:21 PM   #18
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I waited until I was in my 60's to get my first P car. I think that putting in the IMS Guardian is enough expenditure for me in this area. As one of the above posters says the Final Solution must prove itself first before I put out that kind of $$$.

Also I am not sure how long I will keep this car. My guess is anywhere between 2-8 years so I do not want to put too much $$$ into it as I know that selling a Boxster is not going to get me a pile of $$$.

I sometimes ask myself what I would do if my 2.7 engine grenaded. I would likely get an engine from a wreckers yard as a start. Other possibilities are a Raby rebuilt motor of course with the final solution in it. I think that this is not a car for somebody on a tight budget. I am past the point of worrying about it anymore and am now in the 2nd year of ownership. 40k miles now and had 30k miles when I first got it. I drive hard in the summer, gentler in the winter. It has given me more pleasure than any other car I have had. Enjoy yours and drive safely.
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Old 02-27-2013, 01:46 PM   #19
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Ha!.....LOL!
in fairness, Flat6 are not calling it the FINAL SOLUTION, that's just us.

I'd call it the 'perfect solution'.
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Old 02-27-2013, 02:13 PM   #20
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Oops, think I used the "final" word earlier which is a bit insensitive. Apologies for that. Maybe ultimate is a better choice? What is F6 or LN calling it? I understand it's a plain bearing that is oil fed.

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