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2.1 rod bolt faliure autopsy photos
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Captain Pike
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 16, 2008 4:39 pm    Post subject: 2.1 rod bolt faliure autopsy photos Reply with quote

Recently aquired 90 automatic.
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Blown engine
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Suspect rod bolt fatigue faliure. Went to drain the oil and found ___none. At all. The PO complained about some "whine/buzzing noise" from behind the dash. So after consulting his Bentley he bypassed the oil warning circuit to make it go away. Shocked While draining the coolant I find it is blue. Now I'm thinking no pitts to the heads (AMC). Wrong, the entire coolant system has evidence of corosion apperently caused by this blue "coolant"
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

The exhaust system was some cat bypassed franken-pipe.
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So no O2 sensor ___at all___nada__just a plug with a green wire next to it hanging in space.
Engine was "rebuilt" by someone. Heads replaced with AMC heads but not the valves.
Installer tanked the Green ring
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Left crap in the engine
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What is left of #2
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More when I get inside.


Who has a 2.1 short block?
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ebennett
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 16, 2008 7:32 pm    Post subject: Re: 2.1 rod bolt faliure autopsy photos Reply with quote

Bill W wrote:
Recently aquired 90 automatic.
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I guess you picked up Art's bus, at least whats left of it
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OilNBolts
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 16, 2008 7:34 pm    Post subject: Re: 2.1 rod bolt faliure autopsy photos Reply with quote

Bill W wrote:

Engine was "rebuilt" by someone.


"We don't get excited when it crumbles and breaks, we just get on the phone, and call up some flakes"..

FZ
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Captain Pike
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 16, 2008 8:07 pm    Post subject: Re: 2.1 rod bolt faliure autopsy photos Reply with quote

OilNBolts wrote:
Bill W wrote:

Engine was "rebuilt" by someone.


"We don't get excited when it crumbles and breaks, we just get on the phone, and call up some flakes"..

FZ

Who rush on over and break it some more and we're so dumb there lining up at our door____________well the water pump started leaking yesterday afternoon_____but the mechanic ate a bunch of mushrooms_______________ Wink
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OilNBolts
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 16, 2008 9:00 pm    Post subject: Re: 2.1 rod bolt faliure autopsy photos Reply with quote

Please ignore this post... Embarassed
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Last edited by OilNBolts on Thu Dec 11, 2008 9:38 pm; edited 1 time in total
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ftp2leta
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 16, 2008 9:50 pm    Post subject: Re: 2.1 rod bolt faliure autopsy photos Reply with quote

Bill W wrote:
Recently aquired 90 automatic.

Blown engine

Suspect rod bolt fatigue faliure. Went to drain the oil and found ___none. At all. The PO complained about some "whine/buzzing noise" from behind the dash. So after consulting his Bentley he bypassed the oil warning circuit to make it go away. Shocked While draining the coolant I find it is blue. Now I'm thinking no pitts to the heads (AMC). Wrong, the entire coolant system has evidence of corosion apperently caused by this blue "coolant"


Who has a 2.1 short block?


I got block, i need a van! a nice Carat like yours Smile
I have an STI project that should be ready in a month or so...
so 2 block for your van.. he he he.

If it had no more oil don't blame the rod...

I have 4 block with hole in it... i found a reason for all of them, all oil related (bore hole plug gone, oil pressure sender failure, oil cooler failure, oil filter failure.)

Blue coolant as nothing to do with that, coolant come in all colors from many company, believe me!

AMC head are not that better... they corrode like the VW one if not well sealed. I have seen my share of corroded AMC head. You know what, the more i think about it they are probably worse than the german one that lasted for more than 20 years. I still use them with German valve because i won't pay 700$ at the dealer for POORLY reman VW.

Well sealed with good valves they should be ok for 50-80k miles, no more. Sorry. At least i have better hope as to crack!

The Victor REINZ gasket or ELRING won't last forever.

If it's not the gasket, it will be a bore hole plug that will just get the hell out of your block and your engine will bleed to death.

Sorry but i have been there to many time.

I agree that a well maintain, well built Wasser boxer engine could last a long long time... but sadly, who will maintain and built them!

Van are sold over and over, one guy does a trip, as problem, sell the van... new owner fix minimum problems, a few trip, sell the van.... over and over.

It's a sad truth.

Ben
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16CVs
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2008 12:37 am    Post subject: 2.1 failure Reply with quote

God awful ugly engine. looks like one I had before,given to me with a bunch of other Vanagon parts,when the engine was torn down there was nothing savable. All garbage.
It is my thought that rod bolt failures are generally from engines that have been rebuilt and not had the rod bolts changed. I have seen a ot of high mile 2.1's that have well over 200 K and they are very nice inside just bearing to the copper.
I bet if you chased the history on most of these engines with chucked rods,you'll find a rebuild somewhere down the line.


Stacy
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Alan Brase
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2008 6:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I always thought the "blue coolant" story was a red herring. The factory put the wrong coolant in my silver 87 then, cause the heads were both shot at 25k miles. Way before anybody replaced the coolant.
I can see from 1200 miles away that those are NOT the shit valves that come with the AMC heads. They have sodium filled stems. See the divot?
They might have come with the car new, but there is nothing wrong with using them over if the stem wear is okay.
I do not see a rod bolt failure in your pictures. Not to say the unshown one did not fail. Not enough info to say. If the crank journal shows signs of overheating, it was likely oil starvation, not a bolt failure. If the rod nut is OFF the bolt, that is pretty telling.
SillyCone is blessing and scourge.
Certainly not a pretty engine. I have one just like it.
I can't help but think that thing must have made enough bad noise to hear over the radio.
Wouldn't most people stop? Perhaps they thought it would heal up if they kept driving?
Al
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Captain Pike
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2008 7:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I still need to crack the block but the rod bearings were NOT wiped out. Still need to find the rest of the rod to see if the bolt failed.
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Clark_88Westy
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2008 8:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bill, I have a short block you can have. High miles, but no damage.
I'm in Milford, NJ. Send me an email,
clark (at) clarksplace.com
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2008 9:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Block split
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what a mess. Note the cam thrust bearing is wiped to the copper yet the rest are OK.
The other side
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Cam shaft shattered. No purple color on the crank. It seems oil starvation was not the cause of death.
Bearings look OK
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

See where this is going?

Sorted thru the chunks and found the rod bolt
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

Clean snap at the base of the nut. Threads still line up.

Engine was rebuilt with standard bearings and USED cam,crank and non reconditioned rods.
Bolt streached____rod failed___engine go boom.
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2008 10:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

69doublecab wrote:
I always thought the "blue coolant" story was a red herring. The factory put the wrong coolant in my silver 87 then, cause the heads were both shot at 25k miles. Way before anybody replaced the coolant.
I can see from 1200 miles away that those are NOT the shit valves that come with the AMC heads. They have sodium filled stems. See the divot?
They might have come with the car new, but there is nothing wrong with using them over if the stem wear is okay.
I do not see a rod bolt failure in your pictures. Not to say the unshown one did not fail. Not enough info to say. If the crank journal shows signs of overheating, it was likely oil starvation, not a bolt failure. If the rod nut is OFF the bolt, that is pretty telling.
SillyCone is blessing and scourge.
Certainly not a pretty engine. I have one just like it.
I can't help but think that thing must have made enough bad noise to hear over the radio.
Wouldn't most people stop? Perhaps they thought it would heal up if they kept driving?
Al

Check Gowesty's write up of the exhaust valve. Shows the same dimple but with a melted side.
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OilNBolts
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2008 1:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This thread is Sticky worthy. Moderator?
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 17, 2008 5:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Update : engine was rebuilt 30k ago. PO stated he had drained the oil so thats why there was no oil in the case.
I'm going to build a 2.4 replacement Shocked oh my___I'm going wasser Shhh Applause
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 17, 2009 7:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

By the way, the copper showing on the cam thrust bearing is normal. VW used a new bearing set with no tin plating on the thrust because it was flaking off on the older style. They look like that new in the box.
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 26, 2009 12:20 pm    Post subject: Block Reply with quote

Hey i have one! But it looks a hell of allot like that one!
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 27, 2009 12:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

love this kind of info.
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 27, 2009 8:46 am    Post subject: the hole Reply with quote

mine just went aug 1st. running wonderfully and bang...
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 28, 2013 5:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

This thread illustrates why my engine is currently torn apart!

I was recently talking with a member who knows the WBX engines very well. I told him I had pulled the rods, he asked "why? Almost no one does that". I'm not sure his statement is true but.........

Well I've got two reasons..........

One: to gauge the health of the lower end based upon rod bearing wear......
And

Two: to get those 2.1 rods with the torque/angle stretch bolts that are proven weak points OUT OF THE ENGINE.

I'm ordering a set of Rods and bearings from Van Cafe. My original rod bearings with 116,000 original miles show minimal wear.

I'm not cracking the case and I'm tossing the dice that all is well down below. A gamble I'm willing to take on this one. I know the PO who purchased it as the 2nd owner in 1990, I know he maintained the car....... No worries!

The rod bearings are in such good shape I'm almost tempted to run them again! But....... For $16 ........ I won't.
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 28, 2013 9:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yep, your engine would have probably died a violent death within 30-60K miles, now it may be good for 200K more.
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