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Old 10-08-2019, 03:17 AM   #1
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Which IMS solution?

Betting this has been asked a thousand (ten thousand times), but thought maybe it was time for a refresh.

I am getting ready to replace/upgrade the IMS in a 2000 Boxster I just bought (2.7, 90K miles).**** Oil and filter were spotless, but want to put the pin back in the grenade before it goes off (car is flawless but sale price still reflected a $2-3K discount for an IMS replacement).**** I plan to****do the****clutch and RMS at same time as well.

I have a shop ready to do the work, but they want me to pick and buy the solution (this will be first time in 20+ years I've taken any of my cars to a shop -- just seems to make sense in this case given the cost of the tools to do a IMS, and the fact that I don't have a lift and don't want to do everything I have to do with say my '93 911T -- like removing bumpers, etc -- to drop the drivetrain when the car is only on jackstands -- I'm embarrassed and ashamed at how old and lazy I am getting).

First question:**** not sure if it is a single or dual row, is any way I can figure it out before dropping tranny and inspecting the IMS retainer?**** I know there are a lot of opinions about the accuracy of engine number lists, etc.**** Haven't crawled under it yet to find the engine number, but previous owner (longtime -- as in 40 or 50 years -- PCA member) said it was a November 2000 build.**** So let the opinions fly . . .****

Second question:**** what solution should I use?

So solutions as I see it (from cheapest to most expensive) are:

1) OEM replacement
2) LN engineering dual row****ceramic (still a sealed bearing, right?)
3) Technofix DOF (I would like this except it is relatively new and not sure of the quality of the bearing given how little they are****charging for it -- a case of reverse supply-demand curve)
4) LN plain bearing (like 10x the cost of an OEM bearing)

Is this the list or are there other solutions?

The mechanic I found does a lot of track cars driven here in Austin at COTA, has done 50+ Boxster IMSs over the years (probably even more 996/997s?), mostly the LN ceramic dual row, only a handful of the LN plain bearing upgrades (said it's overkill for all but the hardest driven track cars) and no OEM (I am guessing) or TechnoFix DOFs.**** He seems to prefer the LN ceramic as he's never had one fail****in 10 years, but still put the final decision/choice****on me.

Personally, I like the TechnoFix DOF, but it's pretty new, and the bearing itself concerns me (I've bought wheel bearings that cost more than what they want for the open bearing itself, so how could can it be is what causes me pause).

Again, let the opinions fly . . .

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Old 10-08-2019, 05:57 AM   #2
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Ok I'll jump in even though I have not done the IMSB
Personally I would go LN Dual Row. Now your year could be either dual or single and you can't tell until you pull the Fly wheel and I believe the IMSB cover will indicate which.
Now it's my understanding that LN makes a Dual row for both an original dual row replacement and a dual row that can replace the original single row.
Just my thoughts but it's your $$$$

Oh and this question may have been asked in the Billions
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Old 10-08-2019, 07:10 AM   #3
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The LN ceramic retrofit bearings are not sealed, they are open to allow mist lubrication.

While the IMS Solution may cost more, it is the only permanent replacement for the IMS bearing.
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Old 10-08-2019, 09:01 AM   #4
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I haven't done one either and probably won't since I have a Tip. (I'll just replace the motor if it goes)

Having said that, I've done some research on it, and the European Parts Solution makes the most sense to me. It uses an internal oil feed modification, and roller bearings. It costs $579 - $739, depending on motor. The one for your motor should cost $579.

https://www.europeanpartssolution.com/ims-bearing-upgrade-kit

The IMS Solutions bearing is a plain bearing similar to a rod bearing and has an external oil feed modification. It costs over $1800.

They both have 5 year warranties. They both claim to be permanent bearing fixes.

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Old 10-09-2019, 01:54 PM   #5
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OMG, yet another solution to think about!

Opening the link now . . .
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Old 10-09-2019, 02:07 PM   #6
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OK, a really cool solution: oil gets in the IMS tube anyway so may as well force oil thru it to lubricate the bearing.

Looks like the oil pump is on the other end of the engine though, so more work for my mechanic (wonder if he'll be willing to try this one). Is the oil pump hard to access from underneath with the car on a lift?

They say 5,000 installed. Anyone know someone who's installed this?

I am not a spirited driver, but I wonder if oil starvation on hard cornering could be an issue? And what does it do to oil capacity -- do you need more now that you're partially filling the tube with oil squirting down it?

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Old 10-09-2019, 02:43 PM   #7
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OK, a really cool solution: oil gets in the IMS tube anyway so may as well force oil thru it to lubricate the bearing.

Looks like the oil pump is on the other end of the engine though, so more work for my mechanic (wonder if he'll be willing to try this one). Is the oil pump hard to access from underneath with the car on a lift?

They say 5,000 installed. Anyone know someone who's installed this?

I am not a spirited driver, but I wonder if oil starvation on hard cornering could bean issue? And what does it do to oil capacity -- do you need more now that you're partially filling the tube with oil squirting down it?
Flooding the IMS shaft is not necessarily a good idea, plus this kit used a sharpened punch and hammer to wack a "precision" opening in the end of the shaft to let it flood with oil. As it has not been out that long, I seriously doubt the installed base number.
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Old 10-09-2019, 02:48 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by austinporsche View Post
OK, a really cool solution: oil gets in the IMS tube anyway so may as well force oil thru it to lubricate the bearing.

Looks like the oil pump is on the other end of the engine though, so more work for my mechanic (wonder if he'll be willing to try this one). Is the oil pump hard to access from underneath with the car on a lift?

They say 5,000 installed. Anyone know someone who's installed this?

I am not a spirited driver, but I wonder if oil starvation on hard cornering could bean issue? And what does it do to oil capacity -- do you need more now that you're partially filling the tube with oil squirting down it?
I was wondering about the oil capacity too. I concluded that you may need to add a little extra the first time. A pint maybe, or less? My thinking is that any oil that remains in the tube when the engine is off will take a long time to drip down, so when you do an oil change stays in there and you refill as usual and the level will not be effected. It's like changing the fluid on an automatic transmission, some stays in the torque converter. But in the case of a transmission, most by far stays in the torque converter, while very little remains in the IMS tube.
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Old 10-09-2019, 03:31 PM   #9
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Flooding the IMS shaft is not necessarily a good idea, plus this kit used a sharpened punch and hammer to wack a "precision" opening in the end of the shaft to let it flood with oil. As it has not been out that long, I seriously doubt the installed base number.
The hole punched is just a passage. The diameter doesn't really matter much. The precision part is the channel in the pump drive pin.

I don't know whether it's bad or not to flood the IMS tube with oil. It is my understanding that oil finds its way in there anyway and gets trapped. Maybe allowing it to circulate and refresh itself may not be such a bad idea.

It's just a thought, I'm in no way an expert in this matter. But the concept makes sense to me.


And BTW, Pelican Parts is an EPS Retailer. They sell the kit for $696.00

https://www.pelicanparts.com/More_Info/99610590102EPSINT.htm?pn=996-105-901-02-EPS-INT&bt=Y&fs=0&SVSVSI=986M

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Old 10-09-2019, 07:24 PM   #10
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My solution would be to just drive the thing
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Old 10-10-2019, 02:12 AM   #11
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I don't know whether it's bad or not to flood the IMS tube with oil. It is my understanding that oil finds its way in there anyway and gets trapped. Maybe allowing it to circulate and refresh itself may not be such a bad idea.

It's just a thought, I'm in no way an expert in this matter. But the concept makes sense to me.

Then explain the patented plug in the IMS shaft used by the IMS Solution, specifically to keep oil from flooding the shaft..............
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Old 10-10-2019, 03:04 AM   #12
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How is this still “a thing”?

The IMS Solution to invest in is the “IMS Solution” developed by Jake Raby of Flat 6 Innovations and LN Engineering.

Use the Google.

It works.

It is a permanent fix.

Just do it.

I did, and 35,000 miles later I’m still driving the piss outta her with zero worry and sleep great at night.

Now, about your oil and tire choices...
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Old 10-10-2019, 03:12 AM   #13
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Then explain the patented plug in the IMS shaft used by the IMS Solution, specifically to keep oil from flooding the shaft..............
Maybe because with the IMS Solution the oil has nowhere to go on the other end, and thus unable to circulate.

The IMS Solution pumps oil into the bearing from the outside. You don't want that oil going through the bearing into the IMS tube with nowhere else to go because it'll remain there and get stale. That's why they have to use a plug.

The EPS Solution is to feed oil from one end of the tube, out the other end, into the bearing and back into the pan. This allows for circulation.

Last edited by piper6909; 10-10-2019 at 04:05 AM.
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Old 10-10-2019, 03:13 AM   #14
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My solution would be to just drive the thing
That's actually my solution. I said so in my first post. But if I ever decide to do an IMS bearing, I'm probably going with the EPS solution.

Last edited by piper6909; 10-10-2019 at 04:06 AM.
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Old 10-10-2019, 03:16 AM   #15
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The IMS Solution to invest in is the “IMS Solution” developed by Jake Raby of Flat 6 Innovations and LN Engineering.

Use the Google.

It works.

It is a permanent fix.

Just do it.

I did, and 35,000 miles later I’m still driving the piss outta her with zero worry and sleep great at night.

Now, about your oil and tire choices...
I'm sure it works well. I just don't think it's the ONLY solution. To me, the EPS is just as permanent of a fix at a less than 1/3 the cost, and fewer parts to go wrong like a flex tube outside the motor.

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Old 10-10-2019, 05:22 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by MrBen View Post
My solution would be to just drive the thing
+1

Ok now that this has been solved, can we talk about really important stuff
Should we be removing the warning labels from our sun shades????
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Old 10-10-2019, 05:38 AM   #17
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I've got to just say that my 1998 (all stock) Boxster w/ manual trans and 87,000 summer driving only miles, has the orginal IMS and I have no plans to touch it. I've talked to 3 Porsche dealer veteran mechanics and a large Chicago "indi" shop specializing in Porsche's, Audi's and Mercedes......in total they claim to have only seen 3 Porsche's that have suffered a IMS failure in the last 15-20 yrs.

To be fair, a couple did say that if one was to do the clutch, then it's probably "not a terrible idea" to change out the IMS bearing but none thought it was something that needed to be done proactively. They believed it all depends on the overall condition and value of the car as to if it makes sense to JUST do the IMS.

I suppose everyone has their own take on the subject....at one time there was a survey/poll on this Forum but I can't seem to find it.

Last edited by Rob175; 10-10-2019 at 12:08 PM.
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Old 10-10-2019, 05:42 AM   #18
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I've got to just say that my 1989 (all stock) Boxster w/ manual trans and 87,000 summer driving only miles, has the orginal IMS and I have no plans to touch it. .
You've got an '89 Boxster? Wasn't that called a "Fiero"?
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Old 10-10-2019, 05:51 AM   #19
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I'm sure it works well. I just don't think it's the ONLY solution. To me, the EPS is just as permanent of a fix at a less than 1/3 the cost, and fewer parts to go wrong like a flex tube outside the motor.
I have no FHE with the EPS product, nor the LN product, in and of themselves. But I agree with the general statement that there isn't one RIGHT way, with all the others being wrong. This 'religion' that y'all have formed around LN / Jake Raby is alarming, and frankly, leads to the poor production quality we've seen in his products. To speak in terms Piper would understand: Raby is sorta like Trump, in that to his followers, he can do no wrong. Raby could walk out and literally put a bullet in your motor and still convince you it was caused by the LWFW.

I see no reason to suggest that the EPS isn't as good a solution as any other.... and it is most CERTAINLY "good enough".

My own decision with the used motor I just installed in my car was to just leave the IMS alone. There are WAAAY too many other things that can take the motor out, for me to start worrying about something with such a statistically-low failure rate.
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Old 10-10-2019, 05:53 AM   #20
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Wait. Did someone say oil and tires?

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