Syncro specific engine alternatives

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Re: Syncro specific engine alternatives

Postby silverbullet » 30 Dec 2017, 10:06

Russel has built a few 1.8T, custom everything (he makes his own engine cradle and bash plates) although it is a bolt-in iirc
Couldn't be further away from you though!

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Re: Syncro specific engine alternatives

Postby rollercoaster » 30 Dec 2017, 11:06

I had thought the same, long way away,
Lands End to John O'Groats springs to mind.
However I think I saw him in my street a few years ago,
buying an accident damaged T25 camper from my neighbour!
Kind of get used to everything being far away from here,
and so far have not found a reasonable T25 workshop,
apart from a very good metalwork specialist,
that I would recommend.

So anyway 1.8T 20v..
I will speak to him,
any opinions on the suitability?
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Re: Syncro specific engine alternatives

Postby DSM » 30 Dec 2017, 12:47

As Ian says, if you go 1.8T everything will be custom made. :wink:
The kit suppliers are in the States and the prices including import taxes etc are horrific.
AGU was my engine of choice as pre-canbus and complicated emissions kit plus cable throttle to keep it simpler. The early ones are fully forged with larger ports and bigger injectors but running low boost so not a transmission killer!
See what Russel advises as this is a very nice engine to have. :ok
PM me and I can send you some pics when i'm back at work.
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Re: Syncro specific engine alternatives

Postby jebiga41 » 30 Dec 2017, 19:48

oe go diesel yep I said the D word and wait till they ban it youll save a fortune on fuel and bags of torque and as you are quite a distane from major cities the city bans wont effect you for years and by that time we will probably have to convert to electric whether we run diesel or petrol
F*** your Syncro Westie I've a horse outside !
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Postby rollercoaster » 30 Dec 2017, 21:06

Yes I agree,
l think one of each would be best,
a petrol and a diesel.

By the time we are forced to use electric..
satnav will be driving, not us.
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Re: Syncro specific engine alternatives

Postby Tinium » 02 Jan 2018, 13:18

silverbullet wrote:Dai isnt making exhausts anymore due to supplier issues afaik. He designed it but they were outsourced and thats where the problems started.


Cool, thanks for letting me know. Shame about that, they looked great.

silverbullet wrote:Ok I am biased but an EJ25 in its original, reasonably aerodynamic AWD car only returns about 25mpg, so how is it going to do better in a 2 ton brick?


Not expecting it to do any better - as long as it's no worse than my 2.1 running a tired 2E3 etc all carried over from the 1.9 that was in the van originally I'll be happy.

silverbullet wrote:A 2.5 wbx will give you the torque, ground clearance, no parts or compatability issues and its quiet too, with comparable mpg (in the real world) and a similar ticket price.
You get a zero-miles engine too, not a "low mileage, one careful lady owner" mystery lump.

Must admit I didn't know that there was such a thing as a new 2.5 - I'd simply assumed they were a restored 2.1 that had had a lot of labour/love spent on them. The main reason I've gone away from the wbx is that I'm now on wbx number 4, and I've bad experience after bad experience. I know that is only a limited sample of what the wbx world has to offer, and I've been limited by running the 1.9 ancilaries on the 2.1 block (ie, no injection etc) and running "rebuilt" wbxs from a particular source, but just wanted something a bit more up-to-date/reliable/powerful and I've gone the Subaru route for better or worse. :)
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Re: Syncro specific engine alternatives

Postby silverbullet » 03 Jan 2018, 08:24

Efi will always be more efficient than a carb and dizzy from the wrong engine...

My 2.5's are based on the lesser-known Oettinger 2500E which is a longer stroke (82 vs 76mm) and larger bore (98 vs 94) wbx.
Everything apart from the crankcase and pushrods/rockers and crank pulley is new: pistons and barrels obviously, con rods, heads (AMC) reworked & counterweighted crankshaft, Reinz gasket set etc

I insist that the engine has an oil cooler system, I havent designed one for a truck yet but would welcome the opportunity.

Because its essentially a direct swap, the hours to do the work are minimal and I could include this service myself, assuming no horrors are found with the ancilliaries, exhaust or coolant plumbing, those would be outside of my remit.

I would only fit or refit a stainless exhaust system, for obvious reasons.

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Re: Syncro specific engine alternatives

Postby axeman » 04 Jan 2018, 20:48

hi all
just my 2 pence worth, if you have decided to part ways with the wbx for what ever reason then there is a lot of thinking as to what direction too go as there are many different options, below are my thoughts based on my experience.
mv be it a little tired nice all rounder imop enough torque to pull the van and will happily rev up nicey all though the mpg in reality was around 20mpg but it was a tired engine.
jx not really that viable if you which to use the van on a regular basis, in our old westy it made it quite hard work to drive as unless you were sitting at 60mph on the motorway by most standards its underpowered unless craling around in g gear off road.
b230 (volvo) peach of an engine choice in a doka or single cab, cheap to buy the conversion parts, very simple and basic, bags of smooth torque that higher up the rev range becomes power, down sides are it runs a carb and its not simple to convert to efi due to the crank trigger and various other issues that would need to over come. returned around 25mpg. cost around £1k to install in parts
ej22 i think this is a grate all rounder coverting to a Subaru is now a tryed and tested conversion on most pre 2003 donor cars. i would certainly consider this conversion again but would have at least a top end rebuild before installing the engine, probobly cost around £2k to install. the doners are all at leat 15 years old now so are all old cars probably higher milage with a sketchy service history.
agn (1.8 20v n/a) fitted upright with s/a parts, on paper some may well turn there noses up at this engine but again its a peach, what it lacks in torque it more than makes up for in the power in the upper rev range, what makes this engine in my old doka was that with the peak torque being around 4000rpm you were always working up to it, what was grate was the ability to sit in 3rd from 20mph to 80mph (much like the ej22) and for the engine to be happy (confirmed by vag.com which is a wonderful tool to have). returned very close to 30mpg, probably cost around £1500 to install
i consider all of these engines to be pretty much gearbox safe which i think should be a concern given the potenial costs involved in a rebuild cost.

recently i bought an 1998 audi a4 1.8t manual aeb engined car (150bhp varient) with 115k on the clock and with a full audi service history, this engine (in the a4) is very very flexible thanks to the vnt, which lets you drive it like a diesel at low reves and poodle about (with out the noise and all the vibrations etc) , but then you have the option to dive like a normal person and its amasing the way the vnt spools up and pulls the car along effort lessly. there is no dought in my mind that this would make an grate engine if installed upright. the only issue i can see is that as we all know power corupts and there are relatively cheap ways to increase the power output of these engines (swapping n75 valve can up the boost significantly) which i think in a syncro or t3 may cause issues, so stick to stock if this engine sound like its for you.

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Re: Syncro specific engine alternatives

Postby rollercoaster » 05 Jan 2018, 19:43

Thanks Neil,
good words..

Can you elaborate on the syncro specific nature of ground clearance
and getting the protective gear back on,
and waterproofing perhaps, things like that please.
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Re: Syncro specific engine alternatives

Postby 4x4 Bus » 06 Jan 2018, 09:53

The above info on the 1.8T is inaccurate. First of the instillation price is way off even if you are installing yourself unless you are doing a bodge job. Second off no 1.8t uses a VNT turbo. They all use waste gate turbos of wich there are 3 versions used. The torque on these engines is also developed from 1850rpm. There are also over 30 variations of this engine. BHP varies from 150 to 240 in standard form. The 150 can easily be tuned to 190. 2 variations used a throttle cable ( AEB and AGU) and the rest are Fly by wire.
I have had one of these engines in one of my own syncro's for almost 4 years now and installed quite a few. I would not consider any other petrol engine.
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Re: Syncro specific engine alternatives

Postby footstuck » 23 Jan 2018, 09:10

I know it’s not the same because I do my own conversions, and I only go for TDI.
The reason for this is that it is well trodden ground and if you have the inclination you could do the work yourself.
If you use Andy’s wiring loom and Ecu, he will talk you through the installation . . great bloke
I have retained my 616 gearbox FD ratio’s with the addition of longest fourth gear Available and a split third Gear ratio.
This means that the engine is not running at its most economical engine speed at higher road speeds, but I retain the Off-Road crawling speed and I use my vehicles.
Although this topic is not about gearboxes specifically they will have a major effect on how economical your chosen engine conversion can be.
If I drive to the point where I am almost holding up the traffic I get 35 miles to the gallon, I got 36mpg over a tank on one occasion but that was with a MTDI
If I drive using full torque it will go down to 28. I am so comfortable with the fuel returns that I stopped looking for alternative engines to the Tdi.
When I Was first exploring alternative engines I bought a South African Bell housing which opens up a multitude of engine conversions but I didn’t go down that route and it is still sat on the shelf.
The first exhaust I made from my used JX exhaust pipe with the addition of a flexible joint between the turbo and the exhaust box (which is rubber mounted) and although I have repaired it Due to rust damage it has lasted eight years or more.
The engine conversion is simple cheap and powerful enough to comfortably push and hold a very good motorway speed up hill in a loaded van.
TDI’s are not flashy they are totally reliable and give good even talk curve and when off-road on a difficult section where good power and slow speed is necessary take my foot off of the throttle and just leave the engine to meter the power.
I have smelt many a petrol conversion burning their clutch while having to use hi engine speed and clutch-slip to get enough torque to the wheels to climb a rocky assent.
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Re: Syncro specific engine alternatives

Postby rollercoaster » 23 Jan 2018, 12:07

Been put off the Tdi route as I have heard so many discussions about pros and cons of various aspects of them,
mostly the intercooler but also oil cooling and this and that.
A friend here in PZ has a Tdi conversion by Mario and its back getting some kind of upgrade,
as they have improved the way they do the conversion..

And maybe I just like the vroom vroom of a petrol, and do a lot of stop starting.

I had an unbreakable T4 2.5 Tdi 60K on it well looked after from new that ate its water pump,
and consequently munched its valves and pistons etc,
I believe that was an 80K service replacement item that let go early. Just my own experience.

The DOKA thats looking for a new motor is a petrol and I think with the bigger wheels the gearing will be great.
That was my experience last time, a little more torque and power handles the increase in wheels size.
The gearbox will get refurb anyway, at the same time hopefully.

Still shopping for a Syncro for the missus and that might be a diesel so would consider an MTDi,
thanks for pointing me towards Andy, good man.
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Re: Syncro specific engine alternatives

Postby footstuck » 24 Jan 2018, 01:03

Rollercoaster
The premature belt failure could be down to a number of things and the one commonly overlooked is the age of the belt.
Your belt failure was on a 2.5 tdi, and not the more reliable 1.9 TDI AFN (transverse type for ease of fitment) of which i was referring to.
My new Caravelle came with was a great condition JX tat had just had a cart load of money spent on it and one of the listed items was a new belt kit.
After 2 months of ownership i started using the bus.
After 300 miles (3 weeks of very light work)the new belt let go because the tensioner had been pre-tensioned in the wrong direction.
my point being that , over all the 1.9 AFN TDI was the last of the Non-PD direct injection engines and very well refined from the years of production.
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Re: Syncro specific engine alternatives

Postby silverbullet » 24 Jan 2018, 19:53

I would rather replace my petrol clutch every year, than have a TDi destroying the transaxle every two... ;)

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Re: Syncro specific engine alternatives

Postby clift_d » 24 Jan 2018, 22:30

Haters gonna hate...
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