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Old 05-31-2020, 03:42 PM   #51
joel142
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Figured you'd like to have these... From the 2008 XXX meet. I was driving the blue flathooded silver 245 Turbo back then.


Thanks - that's a blast from the past. Back in 2006-2008 time frame I think I just transitioned from borrowing my girlfriends digital point and shoot to an iPhone 1. All/most of the pictures I took I think ended up on some CD-ROM that got buried someplace. That picture nicely encapsulate much of the bodge it took to get that thing running:
  • hot air intake (that's mounted directly to the AMM)
  • rando braided hose for the CBV (which I still suspect I got backward...)
  • those terrible Shuck's universal radiator hoses...
  • the limitless profusion of T-bolt clamps
  • so many Ace Hardware plumbing fittings
  • ancient turbo from 1989
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Old 05-31-2020, 08:09 PM   #52
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^No prob. Looks a lot better now.
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Old 06-09-2020, 03:29 PM   #53
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I just got done reading through this fun thread. It sounds like you're learning from your mistakes and not scared to post about it. That's the stuff the kind of stuff that helps everybody! Keep it coming. I'm sure it's going to be a fun car.

The part where you talk about the car being so much fun back in the day then regrettably taken down for too many upgrades hit me straight in the heart. I ruined a 245 that way a few years ago. Despite being a huge rust bucket from the day I bought it, it was very good to me. It took me and my friends everywhere and handled pretty well. Then my young and dumb self just couldn't be happy with that, so I tried to LS swap it. Part of me wishes I Frankensteined it back together, but I know it never would have been the same. Good luck!
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Old 06-14-2020, 02:21 AM   #54
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Progress - but nothing that's particularly dramatic or photogenic:
  • finished welded cold side charge pipes, leak checked, fixed leaks, and painted satin black (the last refuge of learning welders)
  • finished welded the alternator bracket and the bracket for the remote mount oil filter. Painted same and installed them "for the last time." In the process I discovered I can't worm the alternator past the turbo and onto the bracket. When/if this alternator fails I'm sure future me will look back on this post ruefully.
  • built some other sundries like a throttle cable bracket, painted, and installed that.
  • purchased the 4 most promising coolant overflow bottles off Amazon and I think I have a winner. The only downside is while the description says 'black' but the bottle is actually black with green metallic flake. Although it's actually a really nice paint job it'll probably get a coat of satin black at some point.
  • Added a vacuum manifold as the B21F manifold has only 4 bosses. One is inaccessible because of the brake booster stalk and another is dedicated to the large bore brake booster hose. I want to avoid the plumbing aisle collection of brass t-fittings and unions as seen in previous posts. This fits perfectly on one of the fuel pump cover bolts.

More interestingly, I've gone ahead and (re)done the air intake - thanks to everyone's good advice.



That's a 45* 60-70mm reducing coupler with almost all the straight bits cut off, to a section of 2.75" tube then the rest. Looking into the tube from the AMM side toward the filter there is no point where the filtering element is directly visible. This and the vestigial "trumpet" molded into the filter body should straighten out the airflow. It's about 2.5x diameter to the flange of the AMM. With the bigger diameter it has about 90% the area to the previous filter.

The crankcase vacuum source is a jam nut that I drilled out and then tapped to 1/2" NPT. After a little angle grinding it sat on the tube well enough to be welded in. I want to try routing that hose down along the front of the engine behind the crank pulley where the front harness used to be versus up over the cam cover and through the intake legs. We'll see what the alternator says about that when it's back in.



Hot side charge pipe just clears the air intake. The newer version uses a bigger diameter tube in that section and sits a little taller so it has the standard clearance of ~1/8". One side will likely need a bit of stick-on neoprene post paint because this will hit. No pictures yet, but, that pipe has also been finish welded, checked, and is ready for paint.
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Old 06-14-2020, 02:40 AM   #55
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Originally Posted by volvowagoon View Post
I just got done reading through this fun thread. It sounds like you're learning from your mistakes and not scared to post about it. That's the stuff the kind of stuff that helps everybody! Keep it coming. I'm sure it's going to be a fun car.

The part where you talk about the car being so much fun back in the day then regrettably taken down for too many upgrades hit me straight in the heart. I ruined a 245 that way a few years ago. Despite being a huge rust bucket from the day I bought it, it was very good to me. It took me and my friends everywhere and handled pretty well. Then my young and dumb self just couldn't be happy with that, so tried to LS swap it. Part of me wishes I Frankensteined it back together, but I know it never would have been the same. Good luck!

Thanks for the kind words. I figure, I might as well post up the good, the bad, the dead ends, and the parts links where I can. Not everything can be a youtube montage with slick beats and mitered joints that fit air tight every time.

Young dumb self for sure, but, no amateur tinkerer jumps into an engine swap because they know what they're in for. The chance for the first answers working is just way too small and the energy and enthusiasm to try the 3rd or 4th answer is sometimes just too hard to find. It's also so all at once. Instead of having a running car and doing an upgrade or two at a time suddenly its all on the table from custom intercooler mounts to charge pipes to figuring out a whole downpipe and exhaust.

I also think that as time has passed technology and solutions have slowly (or suddenly) gotten better. In 2004-5 (?) a clutch for an 8 bolt flat flywheel with M41 center splines that was good-ish for 300ft/lbs was the 6 puck kevlar clutch from SPEC. From second gear up it's remarkably streetable but in stop and go traffic it's: rev to 3k, bump clutch, creep forward. There just never seemed to be a good slip point. Now, offerings are dramatically improved for a wider range of transmissions. It's out of scope right now to pull all that apart too what goes back in has the chance of being a lot nicer to live with.

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Old 06-15-2020, 04:28 PM   #56
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The thermostat in the engine is stock at 87C and I'm thinking about when to trigger the electric fan. The sensor is on the outlet of the radiator so it will see the temperature drop across the radiator to. Moving the temperature down will, essentially, add some feed forward to the cooling control system. My gut says 82C on 74C off is a good place to start.
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Old 06-24-2020, 02:33 AM   #57
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Progress continues:
  • Fitted the Yoshifab oil return. After a thread on how hard/easy that was to install I gave it a long thermal soak in the deep freeze (-2*F). Taking it out condensation immediately freezes on the part, the thread locking compound becomes very thick when it hits the metal, and the sleeve slips in without even a tap. 24hr later it seems very well secured. To their point I'll definitely use a counter hold when taking fittings on and off.
  • Installed the alternator and tensioned up the belts. Seems secure and significantly less flimsy than any previous revision.
  • Finish welded the hot side pipes and painted that. It's a race between attractive welds and the end of the project. Just an amazing amount of work for, essentially, 3 weird shaped pipes.



I'm oddly pleased that the EGR had the same thread as an oxygen sensor and ended up with just a block off bung. Nicely simple and feels similar to the 3/4-16 threading in the block for the oil filter. I was able to re-purpose an -8AN aluminum bulkhead as an "all thread" tube that after a little trimming it was the exact right length for the spin on adapter.




Massaged the 90+ manifold to accept an angled flanged turbo. I started with skimming the flange off a Yoshifab exhaust nut to reduce the cutting but that reduced the straight-thread portion enough it was extremely challenging to start. The nut shown is a de-flanged at full thickness and is 12mm flat to flat. There is just enough room to drop a 4" cutoff wheel between the flange and runner #4 (won't say runner #4 doesn't have a few shiny bits...) and to put the hub directly above the stud hole to carve an arc where the points need to travel. Feeling across the wall it still feels pretty thick as the casting flares to enter the flange. I'm also not expecting 200k-miles out of this. There is also a very small crack on the back of the collector that I'm prepared just not to see for now.



Lastly I've ended up with a pair of exhaust housings. On the left is the 18T compressor and center section that's going into the car. On the right is the turbine housing from a blown turbo I bought off craigslist for mockup. This turbo sucked something into the compressor (which was die-ground and "polished" to within an inch of it's life so no markings) while bolted into some DSM chassis. Any idea what turbine side was factory ported? Looking at it I'm inclined to swap exhaust housings as it goes on.

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Old 08-04-2020, 11:20 AM   #58
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Picking things up again after a busy month of other stuff and starting to plumb up the turbo. I'm using Earl's Auto-Fit and Auto-Flex hose and the fitting assembly is an absolute beast. I've done -6 and -8 and those go fine, but, everything from getting the nuts over the tube to getting the threads started has been a complete bear. This normal and I just need to work harder? Tips and tricks?

Honestly, this seems straight forward but the pieces just fit together with a significantly more force than feels "right".
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Old 08-04-2020, 12:25 PM   #59
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The hose ferrule is LH thread so CCW to tighten on the hose. I wrap the hose with 2 revolutions of electrical tape, cut at the center of the e tape wrap to contain all the SS braid. Clean the inside of the hose, and assemble the ferrule. Then using a round tool, screwdriver shaft, to push the hose around in the ferrule until its tidy on the inside. Then I'll chuck the HOSE in the vice with V soft jaws, and hold a wrench on the ferrule. Then lube the **** out of the fitting and grease the threads before assembling. Make sure the hose doesnt twist in the vise and tighten the fitting to the ferrule with 2 wrenches.
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Old 08-04-2020, 03:02 PM   #60
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That's pretty close to my technique: wrap in tape, cut square with cutoff wheel, unwrap, slide into ferrule. Then I put the fitting in the vice and push the ferrule onto that (with everything well lubed up), get a few threads started by hand, and then swap the ferrule into the vice and spin the fitting while making sure not to push out the hose.

The -6 and -8 went great, but, wow, the -4 is a mission. My hose OD is 0.456 whereas Earl's specifies 0.436. Taking the diameter at a couple of locations the 0.456 is pretty consistent. 0.020 is a pretty big delta and would definitely tighten things right up. I'm not sure what the tolerance of braided line is suppose to be.



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The hose ferrule is LH thread so CCW to tighten on the hose. I wrap the hose with 2 revolutions of electrical tape, cut at the center of the e tape wrap to contain all the SS braid. Clean the inside of the hose, and assemble the ferrule. Then using a round tool, screwdriver shaft, to push the hose around in the ferrule until its tidy on the inside. Then I'll chuck the HOSE in the vice with V soft jaws, and hold a wrench on the ferrule. Then lube the **** out of the fitting and grease the threads before assembling. Make sure the hose doesnt twist in the vise and tighten the fitting to the ferrule with 2 wrenches.
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Old 08-04-2020, 03:58 PM   #61
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I don't unwrap the tape. Keeps the fray contained and doesnt let any braiding double up on itself. I havent had a problem with SS or Nylon braided hose, -3 to -16 using the same method. When I get into the 10-16 I usually have the backing out problem unless I chamfer the inside of the hose slightly for a good lead in. Might be worth a try. with an exacto knife or my fav, the step bit. You just need a little bit of help getting the hose started.
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Old 08-07-2020, 01:46 AM   #62
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cwdodson88, thanks for the tips on the AN fittings. It made things a lot simpler. I ended up applying a bunch of your advice and using a very sharp drill bit (held in a tap handle) to take off about 0.010 on diameter from the ID of the hose right where it coke bottles in at the ferrule inlet. Even after that it was a real effort and feels very solid. If it leaks, at least I have them all sized and clocked for the hydraulic shop to do it up proper. Or to order a variety of -4 hose and see which one goes in better.

Oil feed goes back to the banjo fitting on the block, coolant feed to the heater outlet on the head, and coolant return directly to the water pump. There's a deceptive amount of space between the exhaust manifold and the inboard side hose probably at least an inch.





Around the left side of the block at the coolant outlet. Looks tight, but, doesn't rest on anything and is restrained by a p-clip on the right side of the block. This line need one more tie down around the banjo fitting but that's not really accessible with the turbo in place. I need to decide if I want to use another hose separator or put a second p-clip in under the manifold. I worry that's a bit of a hot spot for the clip.



Honestly, the way this car is driven, sporadically at best; not at all in the last 10yrs, I probably should have skipped the coolant lines and just made my life simpler. Amusingly, this is my simple solution to dealing with my cracked heater valve assemble. During round 1, it was very very late at night and I was adding coolant and adding coolant and adding yet more. Eventually it dawned on me that I had added a looooot of coolant and the radiator hadn't filled up that far. Nothing under the car and no visible leaks in the engine bay. I heard this very faint dripping noise and discovered a very small puddle of coolant in front of the rear wheel. When I opened the drivers door I discovered all my missing coolant forming a small lake in the driver footwell. Luckily the interior was out but a few choice words were used.
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Old 10-05-2020, 03:47 PM   #63
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Work on the exhaust is wrapping up with some more pictures coming soon. Ended up being a 3" turbo back with all new pipe, muffler, and hangers interfaced to all new body pickups. A crap ton of work.

Before:


After:


I'm not too proud to say that my wallet does a better job welding than I do. This is all in mild steel and I'm torn between: exhaust wrap, high temp paint, or leaving it as is. I have some "flat sliver" VHT on it's way. All things considered I'm pretty pleased with the pie-cuts unwinding the flat flange. The narrow bits on the backside are very narrow.

Amusingly, with the welds done and with the resultant less flex the flange interferes with the bottom housing stud by around 0.025". It's agonizingly close to clearing but gets trapped between the turbine housing and the firewall. I suspect that stud will get a little trim before it all goes in for the last time as those are plenty long.
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Old 10-11-2020, 02:33 AM   #64
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Before: 2.25" diameter, conical output, and more than enough band clamps.




After: 3" diameter, flat flange downpipe, and welded with flanges. The welds, hanger rods, and flanges get a little high heat paint to slow it rusting.



A set of hangers and insulators for the bottom of the car. A surprising amount of work to get it together from scratch.



Tear drop exhaust exit for fun.
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Old 10-13-2020, 03:28 PM   #65
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Trying to resurrect the Optima Redtop that's been in the trunk, disconnected, for a decade. Trickle charger has gotten it to ~9.5V after about 48hrs. I'll be curious to see if it'll handle any kind of load. Those batteries have gotten obscenely expensive.

Next step is to add fuel, jumper the pump, and see if there are any leaks. The injectors were cleaned and balanced in...(checks gmail)...November 2012.
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Old 10-15-2020, 10:55 AM   #66
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Trying to resurrect the Optima Redtop that's been in the trunk, disconnected, for a decade. Trickle charger has gotten it to ~9.5V after about 48hrs. I'll be curious to see if it'll handle any kind of load. Those batteries have gotten obscenely expensive.

Next step is to add fuel, jumper the pump, and see if there are any leaks. The injectors were cleaned and balanced in...(checks gmail)...November 2012.
I have found that some chargers dont like charging a battery that is below 10v. Sometimes if you trick your charger, by connecting a "good" battery in parallel with some jumper cables, it'll take the full charge. My charger has a cycle recondition, where it discharges to 11v then charges to 14, through 3 discharge cycles. That with the jumper method has brought back a few long ded batteries.
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Old 11-16-2020, 01:15 PM   #67
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Haven't seen things this back together for a very long time. It ran (surprisingly smoothly) on a squirt of brake clean into the intake manifold before I ran out of time on Sunday. More reassembly over the next couple of days and continue towards a methodical startup.

To that end:
  • coolant: filled and pressurized to 15psi. The block off plate for the back of the water pump worked and all the hoses worked as expected after a few worm clamps got tweaked a little tighter.
  • oil: changed the oil (10yrs, 500m interval!) and spun the engine to build up pressure. All the 45* angle ORB fittings worked but a face seal on the Amazon thermostat/filter housing weeped at 60PSI. I was able to get just a little more torque on the fitting, but, I'll need to keep an eye on it and see where that lands.
  • fuel: jumpered the pump and charged the system to 43PSI. No fitting leaks and no drips from the injectors. Next I'll see if the injectors still actuate.

I think the last time I did this I just bolted it all together and hit the starter. There's some saying I've heard someplace about fools rushing in...

Nursing the battery back to life failed so new battery too. Wiring tidy will need to happen sooner than later but, for now, the emphasis is on running.
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Old 11-17-2020, 05:04 PM   #68
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Coming along!

I have one thing to mention that is going to give you a headache... I don't see a brace for your B21F intake manifold. You absolutely want one on there! Over time the manifold will likely crack and break near the runners like we've experienced recently on the General Leif. Granted, our usage is a bit different, we have an elbow with a relocated throttle body that is adding stress and we are likely sitting at 6000rpm+ for much longer periods of time than you will be, but it's worth mentioning.

It doesn't look like you'll be able to use the factory B21F piece as it goes from two of the factory engine mount bolts and about straight up to the intake manifold.
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Old 11-17-2020, 08:58 PM   #69
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I have a few if you need one, PM me if you do.
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Old 11-18-2020, 01:44 PM   #70
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Interesting on the brace - I very vaguely remember that from pulling the manifold from the junkyard way back when. If it misses the intercooler pipe it would still need to deal with the engine mount that doesn't really look too standard anymore.

I made a note on the whiteboard to-do list to circle back to that. Should be straight forward to put a plate on the intake manifold, find a spot to tie to on the block, and then connect the two with some tube.
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Old 11-18-2020, 04:54 PM   #71
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Yes, we thought so as well, until we started breaking the braces we used, and/or the hardware we used. Your setup is a little more friendly than ours though with regards to clearance right under the manifold. Make sure you tie into the two bolt holes that the standard one would, and make it beefy like the original as well.
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Old 11-18-2020, 10:02 PM   #72
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On the brace - looking at that picture that's a pretty well thought out load path. They've set it up so that the welds are in compression, the folded piece with the tube driving right through the boxed section, and then they did it in 1/8". I suspect I'll try to use the holes just above and two the left of the existing mounts and do something clever to keep everything similar to that. A tricky cantilever.
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Old 11-23-2020, 03:42 AM   #73
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Woot! It runs!

Got everything put together, turned the key, and off it went. Got it up to temperature without any leaks or other problems, all the extra oils and brake clean cooked off the exhaust manifold, and it settled into running. Kind of crazy to hear it go after 10yrs.

As an FYI the oil filter/thermostat housing did leak as expected. The re-cut ORB fittings are good but the cap to hold the thermostat cartridge weeped. After I popped the cap off, replaced the o-ring with one a little bigger, and wound it back in it held oil pressure. Looking at the fitting diameter I suspect an 850 style aluminum oil drain washer would work just as well to seal it up. For the price it's amazingly good, but given that I've now machined or adapted every port...well, I probably can't recommend it.

One quick question as I puzzle through next steps:
  • On the first version I didn't fit in the push rod throttle linkage because of the proximity of the brake booster stalk. Instead, I adapted a throttle wheel and directly attached that to the throttle cable. I didn't think that was a big deal at the time, but, as I try to get the throttle plate to consistently return to close I'm beginning to think that was in for a reason. Am I correct in guessing the throttle linkage stops the butterfly from being back driven? I wound the remaining torsion spring on the throttle body an extra turn and that certainly helps the throttle snap back. Even with that, sometimes it returns to ~800RPM and sometimes to 1500.

Not the end of the world for now, but, it's on the list to solve.

The original didn't have space for an idle control motor and for the sake of expediency I haven't added one in this version. While annoyingly manual it does seem to start and idle pretty consistently around 900RPM. Presuming that to be close enough I set timing there to be ~13*. There is a bit of chasing your tail with that so maybe an idle motor wouldn't be a bad thing to add...
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