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Engine work on My 78 Westy
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otiswesty
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PostPosted: Tue May 27, 2008 10:00 pm    Post subject: Engine work on My 78 Westy Reply with quote

I took my bus into the shop this AM, sounded like a exhaust leak at the exhaust manifold gasket as I couldn't see anything else. Shop called me this PM, studs pulling out of the head, needs new head on one side, est $1100. OUCH!

Now this motor is in my 1978 Westfalia that I have owned since 1987. In 1992 I had a failure of the stock 2.0 FI motor and had a rebuilt motor installed by a German mechnic in Ann Arbor, "Wolfgang" or something like that. Four years later back in Los Angeles, engine was running poorly and dropped valve seat was the diagnosis. I had newly machined heads put on at that time, but also found out that I had been driving around with a 1800 motor and solid lifters for the ensuing 4 years, oh well, I never seemed to notice.

Daily drove the bus for another 4 years, and since then it has been a second car for an additional 7 years. Now the van has 246K miles (89K when purchased), I estimate that I have put over 60K miles on the motor since the head job in 1997 or so.

I was always bugged by having the "wrong" motor in my van and bought a running 2.0 hydraulic out of a Champagne edition that was being parted out by a sand rail enthusiast that was only interested in the gear box and stub axles. Now this motor has been sitting in my garage for at least 2 years and now I am wondering if I should bite the bullet and rebuild the 2.0 hydraulic. I see it as the $1000+ in engine work that I am looking at would go a long way toward refreshing a motor to replace the current one that may be getting tired out anyway.

I'll note that my driving style has also changed alot in the last 20+ years, so my engine is less likely to overheat than when I was pushing 70+ MPH for 6 hrs all the way to Mammoth back in the day.

Thinking about local rebuild $$

vs

Boston Bob $$

vs

Camper special $$$$

vs

fixing existing 1800 motor $

Any thoughts? Think
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Bleyseng
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PostPosted: Tue May 27, 2008 10:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I can relate why I went with Jake's parts.....for a CS.

New heads torn down to the castings and rebuilt with very high quality parts including valve seats installed so they won't ever fall out..(thats a bit of piece of mind right there).

The Jake cam/lifters which runs with Ljet and the engine runs 50F cooler than stock (my CHT comparison). (more piece of mind)


more hp/torque so I can drive at 70-80 mph when I have to and not WORRY about the engine blowing up. (more piece of mind) now I don't always drive fast but I have driven up long steep winding backroads in 3rd gear reving the piss out of the engine without any worry...

With all this piece of mind I can let my significant other drive too (she loves it) and sleep while she drives (without worry!)

Boston Bob I hear does a nice engine too, just without the little extra stuff that a Raby engine does have.

Money??? Thats for you to decide but I have been stuck by the side of the road before two states away from home...hopefully never again so its money well spent.
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otiswesty
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PostPosted: Tue May 27, 2008 10:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, its been 11 years since I had any major engine work done on that van. My concern with the Raby build is that I am a stock driver. That is stock exhaust, stock ignition, stock distributor, and so on. I have heard that Raby is not enthused with drivers that are fixated on the "stock" configuration. The increased power is tempting, and the money is doable. Maybe just going with a quality local rebuild and a set of his heads would be a good compromise.
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Traveling Writer
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PostPosted: Wed May 28, 2008 12:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

From what little I know, more from what I have heard here, replacing only one head is a no-no. If you replace them, you do both. So I hear....
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Bleyseng
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PostPosted: Wed May 28, 2008 5:30 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Traveling Writer wrote:
From what little I know, more from what I have heard here, replacing only one head is a no-no. If you replace them, you do both. So I hear....



Totally!!! replace both heads as they are a pair.


back to engines...the Raby cam profile is the key to his CS, running cooler CHT's is the biggest benefit vs Stock. I run 72-74 heat exchangers (as they put out mucher better heat too) and a SS 4 into 1 muffler.

The CS has a better cam/lifters/adjusters, bigger valves and coupled with the early HE's and a 4 into 1 has better breathing/exhaust cooling. The rest is stockish..Thats the sweetness of the CS is that is improved stock not some wild ass engine...
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70 Ghia Black convert-9/69 build date-stock w/133k 1600 SP-barn find now with a rebuilt tranny and engine
77 Westy 2.0L w/Ljet, Camper Special engine-95hp and with LSD!
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Jake Raby
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PostPosted: Wed May 28, 2008 7:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
My concern with the Raby build is that I am a stock driver.

So WERE many of those that have had their expectations far exceeded by the CS to date. Until the CS was created, being a "Stock driver" was the only choice a "Bus Driver" had.

Quote:
That is stock exhaust, stock ignition, stock distributor, and so on
.
Of all those the only thing that isn't compatible with the CS engine design is the exhaust system. The stock muffler must go when going to the CS, else the entire engine and it's benefits will be compromised.

Quote:
I have heard that Raby is not enthused with drivers that are fixated on the "stock" configuration.

Thats only because a certain group of people think that the stock engine is the ONLY way to go, no matter what. Their closed minds have hampered my success with the CS combination and thats been no fun for me to overcome. You should "hear" the reasoning for this from me directly, hear-say is irrelevant.

Quote:
The increased power is tempting, and the money is doable. Maybe just going with a quality local rebuild and a set of his heads would be a good compromise.


The increased power isn't the biggest benefit. The broad perating range is something that words can't explain and the cool running and other benefits far supersede the "power".
That said, the heads are MORE THAN 1/2 the cost of the CS engine kit, the only way to get results even similar to the CS is to buy the full kit! Purchasing our heads won't get you the benefits that the entire engine design offers.

Some people still think that ONE part of an engine's design is important than all the others- thats not the case. An engine is comprised of a multitude of components working together to create a single package. due to this when one of these items is altered or "skimped on" the entire engine suffers.

Having been the creator of this engine design, no one knows this better than I do.

Something to remember:
Just bevcause the engine has more power does NOT mean that it is any more difficult to drive or that you HAVE TO GO FAST!!! You can drive the engine as "grandmotherhly" as you like, because it has more power than stock at all RPM.. That means its even easier to go slow, if you want to.
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otiswesty
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PostPosted: Wed May 28, 2008 9:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jake Raby wrote:
Just because the engine has more power does NOT mean that it is any more difficult to drive or that you HAVE TO GO FAST!!! You can drive the engine as "grandmotherhly" as you like, because it has more power than stock at all RPM.. That means its even easier to go slow, if you want to.


Ha ha. Grandma don't drive my bus

That said, "too slow, too bad" is on my bumper.

Just 'cause I don't drive 80 on the freeway, doesn't mean I like going 35 up hills. That's where the power deficiency is in my opinion. If I can use the stock ignition, that would be a big plus for me. What about hydraulic lifters? Maybe that is opening a big can-o-worms. I also have a set of 1974 heat exchangers I could use if I really need to make some exhaust changes.
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Jake Raby
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PostPosted: Wed May 28, 2008 11:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Just 'cause I don't drive 80 on the freeway, doesn't mean I like going 35 up hills.

Exactly and thats what the added power is best used for. I don't use 3rd gear in my Bus, unless I am towing a car behind me.

Quote:
That's where the power deficiency is in my opinion.

Absolutely! And it is made worse by the stock RPM range and peak torque being at 2,500 RPM. The speedo and tach both drop like a rock till 2500 and that sucks while ascending grades.

Quote:
If I can use the stock ignition, that would be a big plus for me.
Absolutely. you won't get the added benefits that better more advanced/ modern units offer but it will work just fine andI have plenty of people using them.

Quote:
What about hydraulic lifters? Maybe that is opening a big can-o-worms.

NO. My explanation why would take 17 pages to write.

Quote:

I also have a set of 1974 heat exchangers I could use if I really need to make some exhaust changes.

Those are always best, I prefer them.
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Wildthings
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PostPosted: Wed May 28, 2008 12:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

otiswesty wrote:
What about hydraulic lifters? Maybe that is opening a big can-o-worms.


Personally have no qualms about running hydraulic lifters on a stock engine. If you are not willing to check and adjust your solids often then the hydraulics will give you better service. That said if you pay for top quality head work, have a good cam, use swivel adjusters and don't let your engine overheat, you can probably extend the adjustment intervals for solid lifters to at least 12K miles if not 25K.
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otiswesty
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PostPosted: Wed May 28, 2008 12:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've done lots of interior trim and electrical work and restorations. Always had a fear of major mechanicals, I don't know why. Probably it is the worry of a busted bolt or frozen nut that I think will stop me. so here I am, I'm biting the bullet and going to do a CS kit rebuild. Order is in Very Happy
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otiswesty
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 31, 2016 10:06 am    Post subject: Re: Engine work on My 78 Westy Reply with quote

Well, here we are in 2016. The CS that I built back in 2009 has been sitting in my garage under a drop sheet cover. My original head work I had done as a stop gap measure and held up until now. At that time it was a cracked head and exhaust stud pulling out. Now I have 0 compression on #3.

The 1800 solid lifter motor in my bus was originally installed in 1992 in Ann Arbor Michigan. It has had head work a couple of times but I have put over 100K miles on this nice rebuild. The heat exchangers are original to the bus, even the muffler was an original VW muffler that was just showing some small holes.

The van still ran and drove when I backed it onto some ramps in the garage yesterday. I had spent Saturday going over the Camper Special that I picked up from Jake Raby and company back in early 2009. It was carefully assembled in the Spring of 2009 with my son, but has sat uninstalled since that time. Every thing looked okay, I double checked the drive train and have been getting my exhaust and ancillary parts together.

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Last edited by otiswesty on Mon Oct 31, 2016 10:17 am; edited 1 time in total
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otiswesty
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 31, 2016 10:15 am    Post subject: Re: Engine work on My 78 Westy Reply with quote

I pulled the rear bumper and then the full exhaust system from the F-pipes back all in one piece. Most of the nuts were fused and rusted, a few to nubs. A cutting wheel took care of separating the pieces and I have some that I just put up in the classifieds as freebies.
http://www.thesamba.com/vw/classifieds/detail.php?id=1986607
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I am looking for the right rear heater tube as I seem to either have lost it or never had that sourced back when I was putting together my parts pile for the 72-74 exhaust conversion.
Here are the heat tubes that I do have.
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I need the tube that goes in here on the right side next to the alternator.
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 31, 2016 10:25 am    Post subject: Re: Engine work on My 78 Westy Reply with quote

it is a short piece, then there is a plastic piece that sits on top of that and then a hose to the fan motor. I think this is the one plus the one you already have for the other side.

http://www.thesamba.com/vw/classifieds/detail.php?id=1985514
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Wildthings
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 31, 2016 10:34 am    Post subject: Re: Engine work on My 78 Westy Reply with quote

A few years ago you could have gotten the parts you need at Traftons for a song. With Bill out of the picture today that type of stuff might still be there but will take a lot more digging to find. Check at Always Vdub and with John at Halsey as well.
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otiswesty
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 31, 2016 11:52 am    Post subject: Re: Engine work on My 78 Westy Reply with quote

SGKent wrote:
it is a short piece, then there is a plastic piece that sits on top of that and then a hose to the fan motor. I think this is the one plus the one you already have for the other side.

http://www.thesamba.com/vw/classifieds/detail.php?id=1985514


The earlier riser tube is round at the bottom. This is the same one as what I have on my 78 system. Also I have the plastic piece, so I am set there.

@ Wildthings - I'll check with Halsey. Thanks
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 31, 2016 12:04 pm    Post subject: Re: Engine work on My 78 Westy Reply with quote

Here is the piece I am looking for, I think
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Also, I am not sure where this left sided support bracket bolts to
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 31, 2016 2:09 pm    Post subject: Re: Engine work on My 78 Westy Reply with quote

That left sided support bracket, 72-74, the upper portion bolts to
the side of the blower case, under the oil cooler support tang bolt(A/C mount), as far as where the lower fastens, I believe it goes on a support flange for
that specific exhaust, not sure, mine's cracked in two.
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otiswesty
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 05, 2016 2:41 pm    Post subject: Re: Engine work on My 78 Westy Reply with quote

The support bracket was easy once pointed out where it went. There was only one way that works. Bolt in the fan housing to the muffler bolt.

My new motor is a GE donor that has a Camper Special kit. There is some sort of air hole that looks like some kind of pipe should be hooked up to it. It is on the right side of the tin just in front of the fan housing.

On the old GD motor, there is a very similar through hole protrusion on the left side but off of the fan housing.

Should these be hooked to anything? or are they just a vent of some sort?

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BayCreamPuff
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 05, 2016 3:02 pm    Post subject: Re: Engine work on My 78 Westy Reply with quote

It connects to the charcoal canister on the right side behind the starter battery.

Photos from Mayor Ratwell.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 05, 2016 3:20 pm    Post subject: Re: Engine work on My 78 Westy Reply with quote

For further elaboration, the shroud with the hole on he drivers side,the charcoal canister mounts on the firewall. This is on my 77 bus,
Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.



The hole on the passenger side, over and behind the alternator, was the later 78+ style with the charcoal canister tucked behind the right rear tail light mounted vertically, as pictured in the clean engine shots above.

The canisters are different, the early style like mine is wider, while the late style is a bit narrower. The connection on the airbox is different as well, but functions the same and you could route the hoses either way without too much difficulty
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