Part 3: Adam's fantastic voyage from supercharged blandness to turbocharged bliss
Backstory: I bought just about everything to switch to turbo 3 years ago when I was making more money than I had sense. The parts have sat in plastic bins for 3 years, gathering dust and quietly, patiently waiting on their chance to prove themselves. Well, due to being tired of the supercharger setup as well as the fact that the motor has not been running well and smoking like crazy, I talked a good friend of mine into letting me use his garage for "3 weeks" to sort out the engine issues and install the turbo setup. My original goal was to really get it out of his garage in 3 weeks. But the past few days of tearing everything apart have made that seem a bit unrealistic. Now, onto the teardown.
As mentioned already a few posts back, the first thing that I did was a leakdown test, which did not go well. Leakdown was high on 2 cylinders and inconsistent between them all. It sounded like the exhaust valves were definitely leaking. I could hear it by putting my ear on the tailpipe. That was followed by a compression test, which did not go well either. I don't have the numbers with me right now so I'll edit this post tomorrow to add the results below this paragraph.
First, I removed the header, which revealed that every exhaust valve has some sort of white deposits caked onto the back of it.
Next, I pulled the intake manifold off and found a bunch of fun surprises. First off, the injectors. I had heard about how E85 can gum up injectors but I was not prepared for this:
That black gunk on there is very thick and I'm a little amazed that they were still working with all of that on them. Here are some more detailed pics of the tips:
Note that I rubbed some of the gunk off with my finger before taking the pic of this one:
Not only were the injector tips gummed up, but so were the intake ports. It is literally caked on the intake ports, backs of the valves, etc.
Here's a little bit that I scraped out of one of the intake ports. This is just from a small portion of ONE side of an intake port.
Since the first leak down test was troubling, but didn't really point to one definitive issue, I decided to do it again now that I could see the back of the valves and listen/feel more closely for leaks. I only did cylinder one. This test again pointed to the exhaust valves as being the most obvious, but probably not the only issue. So, I pulled the head.
The tops of the cylinders were pretty gummed up too, so I wiped them off. While doing this, I was a bit shocked to notice that I could rock the tops of the pistons back and forth close to a full mm within the cylinder. I know that forged pistons need to be undersized because they expand so much after heating up. However, it is a lot more movement than I figured it would be. I'm not sure if it's normal or not.
I'm definitely going to have to take the head to a shop to get checked, built, etc. Since I've got it apart, I'll probably go ahead and order aftermarket valves, springs, and retainers and have the shop assemble it and maybe do a mild port and polish along with a valve job.
Here's how she sits right now:
I'm going to try and get the block out tomorrow and get it on the engine stand so I can start investigating and pulling it apart. I'm really leaning toward taking it to the machine shop as well so I can get the block and head fitted for 12mm RB26 head studs. Because f*ck "head lift"!