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VR6 Conversion: Can we make this thing fit.
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casey79westfalia
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 16, 2010 11:33 am    Post subject: VR6 Conversion: Can we make this thing fit. Reply with quote

Ok. I know a few members have managed to get the vr6 motor in the vanagon but not without popping the decklid up a few inches. I am destined to get this motor in my vanagon but also am planning on a tdi if I just cant make it work.

As we all know the vr6 motor is the greatest. Its powerful, reliable, easy to work on, lots of unlocked power and the best part, it's cheap. From what I have read it just seems that it is too tall to make fit without popping up through the decklid. I am destined to make this possible in my syncro. I know, I know it cant be done. But why?? Lets start throwing around the things that make this engine not fit. I have heard the throttlebody could be size differently to clear the hatch. This may be a complete waste of time but man would I love to see this conversion work for the vanagon. I mean there could be a few parts like oil pan and throttle body that could be modified to allowi it to fit. Please feel free to contribute to this thread if you have any knowledge of the vr6 motor or even one in a vanagon.
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James 93SLC
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 16, 2010 12:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I love the VR6 motor in my Corrado. It is has great low end torque and Iwould agree it would be sweet in the Vanagon.

The problem is that it is a very tall motor. It's not just the intake that makes up the height, and in fact doesn't really extend much past the valve cover at all. Couple that with where it would mate to the trans, which does require you to notch the firewall/deck. No way around it unless you shift the trans rearward (not sure if there is enough space to begin with).

Only a Doka has ample height to escape raising the deck.

About the only think that MIGHT work is to try laying it over like the diesel. I'm not sure how the VR would like that though, plus it would require a custom oil pan.
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casey79westfalia
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 16, 2010 1:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thats what I was thinking, turning the motor like the diesel and getting it to sit in there. Its a shame that it just doesnt fit in there flat. That would just look too sweet.
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danfromsyr
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 16, 2010 1:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

you should take a walk thru the samba gallery first,
it'll answer most questions.
I'd see this interfering with the Syncro fuel tank I think.

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and who wants to give up this much lower bed comfort/useage just to get there a bit faster?
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casey79westfalia
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 16, 2010 1:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Trust me I looked through the gallery and I have seen those pics. I am just curious if it would be possible without doing the raised decklid. Rotating the motor could possibly work with some serius positioning.
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87 Westfalia Syncro "Phoenix"
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76 Porsche 914
2014 Audi Q7
2010 Tdi Sportwagen

Currently looking for 62 Double Cab, 66 Westfalia Parts!
(Rear seat and pedestal, bumpers, mirrors)

http://www.baycountrymotors.com

My 87 Syncro Westfalia 1.8t Restoration

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MarkWard
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 16, 2010 1:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Anything is possible. However, projects are often limited by one's skill set, money and time. I was told my engine would not work in a Vanagon at 50 degrees. I did not listen to the naysayers and have just returned from a 7200 mile round trip Fla, to Ca and back. While I would have preferred to not notch my engine hatch, it has not been a problem. We sleep up top and use the area behind the rear seat for luggage, dog food, sleeping bags etc. Go for it and post lots of pictures.
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thummmper
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 16, 2010 6:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I suppose you could wedge the oil pan and reconfigure the pickup-- you might play with scale profile drawings and an engine cutout for positioning. dimensions are essential. Give yourself time to get accustomed to the concept and run with it. ynever know
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SyncroGhia
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 21, 2010 5:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

This has been done in a Syncro.

There is a Blue Galvanised Syncro (built by a factory worker) who installed a VR6 motor into the Syncro (with stock petrol tank).

It's now owned a friend of mine in UK. I'm sure he won't mind me putting up a couple of photos and I'll see if he's around to come on and help out with any questions asked...

One thing I do remember him saying is that it's a bit thirsty! but goes well!

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MG
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danfromsyr
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 21, 2010 7:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's still a raised engine lid.

it's always been a loose opinion of mine "if you have to ask, it's probably no" but then that's a tad harsh.. and one has to ask in order to learn.

but looking at these if anyone could manage the skills to remake the intake system on these that's most of what is ABOVE the engine lid anyways.
sure you won't likely recreate the tuned intake signal that the factory engineers and computers did, but you may be able to sleep in the lower berth. make a tube intake log with the T-body orientated towards the PS tailight for an aircleaner.

In our I5 conversions we lowered as much as possible, but still removed the engine lid material just above the intake manifold, but it does NOT protrude above and only makes slight contact when the hatch is loaded with firewood.

SyncroGhia wrote:
This has been done in a Syncro.

There is a Blue Galvanised Syncro (built by a factory worker) who installed a VR6 motor into the Syncro (with stock petrol tank).

It's now owned a friend of mine in UK. I'm sure he won't mind me putting up a couple of photos and I'll see if he's around to come on and help out with any questions asked...

One thing I do remember him saying is that it's a bit thirsty! but goes well!


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MG
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edgood1
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 21, 2010 10:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

SyncroGhia wrote:


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that luggage rack mod makes it look like a balding man.


If raising the decklid is such a concern, why not raise the rear seat/bed to match the height? a couple inches wouldn't be so bad,.
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SeattleDownhill
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 21, 2010 11:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

There was a vr6 Syncro at the leavenworth drive this last weekend... So rad. The thing was about a foot+ taller than my van. The motor was perfectly flat and the deck lid was only raised about an inch in the center. It looked like no firewall cutting had been done either. And with only raising the deck lid an inch in a small area, you'd only have to mod the cushion a tiny bit and would not lose the bed at all.

I'll try to post some pictures soon. I couldn't find the guy to ask him about it, but it was crazy clean. I had seen the van parked at UW once before and lusted after it then too.
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GBA 88West LA
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 21, 2010 11:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

whats the purpose of the front luggage or lack there of portion of pop top like that? sunroof ? solar ?
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 21, 2010 11:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

edgood1 wrote:

If raising the decklid is such a concern, why not raise the rear seat/bed to match the height? a couple inches wouldn't be so bad,.

Thats not a bad idea.. but don't go wild with it.

The bench is already a bit high for lon times in the saddle comfort (i.e. for touring)
I have a set up with two front buckets in place of the Westy bench.. That sits you about 2" higher than the stock bench and not only is it too high for short people.. you want an ottoman or foot rest.. you also run out of head room if you're taller. At 6-3 my head just clears the upper bunk board.

I'd suggest you keep any raising of the rear bench to 1"ish max..
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danfromsyr wrote:
those are straight line runs with light weight race cars for only 1/4mile at a time..
not pushing a loaded brick up a mountain pass with a family of 4+ inside expecting to have an event free vacation..
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edgood1
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 21, 2010 11:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

j_dirge wrote:
edgood1 wrote:

If raising the decklid is such a concern, why not raise the rear seat/bed to match the height? a couple inches wouldn't be so bad,.

Thats not a bad idea.. but don't go wild with it.

The bench is already a bit high for lon times in the saddle comfort (i.e. for touring)
I have a set up with two front buckets in place of the Westy bench.. That sits you about 2" higher than the stock bench and not only is it too high for short people.. you want an ottoman or foot rest.. you also run out of head room if you're taller. At 6-3 my head just clears the upper bunk board.

I'd suggest you keep any raising of the rear bench to 1"ish max..


even worse if you have a late model westy with the air conditioner in the way.
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James 93SLC
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 21, 2010 12:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

danfromsyr wrote:
That's still a raised engine lid.

it's always been a loose opinion of mine "if you have to ask, it's probably no" but then that's a tad harsh.. and one has to ask in order to learn.

but looking at these if anyone could manage the skills to remake the intake system on these that's most of what is ABOVE the engine lid anyways.


It's not the stock VR intake that requires the raised lid. The red arrows point to the valve cover, and this is what makes the height an issue. No way to shrink that down.
As you can see (Green arrows) the throttle body and intake runners are flush or below the top of the engine. The blue arrow section of the intake that runs across the valve cover is only about 1.5" high, and this is running in a recessed area of the valve cover (which is again as low as possible).
Now to shift the valve cover lower would require lowering the whole engine. This isn't an option as the oil pan would then run way too close to the ground. There just isn't a way to get around a raised deck.

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levi
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 21, 2010 12:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

edgood1 wrote:


that luggage rack mod makes it look like a balding man.


Sometimes I think I like it, other times I'm not too sure.
But it's not a modification, they came from the factory like that.
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edgood1
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 21, 2010 12:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

James 93SLC wrote:
danfromsyr wrote:
That's still a raised engine lid.

it's always been a loose opinion of mine "if you have to ask, it's probably no" but then that's a tad harsh.. and one has to ask in order to learn.

but looking at these if anyone could manage the skills to remake the intake system on these that's most of what is ABOVE the engine lid anyways.


It's not the stock VR intake that requires the raised lid. The red arrows point to the valve cover, and this is what makes the height an issue. No way to shrink that down.
As you can see (Green arrows) the throttle body and intake runners are flush or below the top of the engine. The blue arrow section of the intake that runs across the valve cover is only about 1.5" high, and this is running in a recessed area of the valve cover (which is again as low as possible).
Now to shift the valve cover lower would require lowering the whole engine. This isn't an option as the oil pan would then run way too close to the ground. There just isn't a way to get around a raised deck.

Image may have been reduced in size. Click image to view fullscreen.


OK... so why can't you lower the engine at the mounts? The tranny would be angled down more, but so what?

I installed spacers on my engine carrier bar to make my waterboxer the correct height for a syncro. The previous owner put in a 2wd waterboxer and retained the incorrect carrier, which put the engine too high. I put in spacers for a 2" difference.... the tranny was previously pushed into the gas tank, but not too bad, now its normal and theres plenty of room in there. i kept the spacers on when putting int the subaru engine. whos to say we can't make it even lower than 2"?

If its a 2wd van you don't have to worry about the driveshaft.... but even so... if you drop the engine lower, you are just changing the angle of the driveshaft on the syncro. The front part of the transmission doesn't actually drop.

.... BUT what if we wanted to drop it and put spacers between ALL the mount points on a syncro (engine carrier and metal trans to frame mounts) essentially lowering the entire driveline. why wouldn't that work?....assuming your CVs can take the angle.... or upgrade them to 930s.

it has to have been attempted
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MarkWard
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 21, 2010 1:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I understood the original poster actually wanted to improve ground clearance to the point of trimming the rear valance away. So I don't think lowering the entire drive train was in his vision, but as you state could be done, but not easily.
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 21, 2010 1:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

rsxsr wrote:
I understood the original poster actually wanted to improve ground clearance to the point of trimming the rear valance away. So I don't think lowering the entire drive train was in his vision, but as you state could be done, but not easily.


yes, if you lower the engine and transmission you'll have to raise the suspension to grain the ground clearance back... then you'd be getting the CV angles closer to stock.
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SyncroGhia
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 21, 2010 2:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I guess the engine could have been mounted lower in the shell but as with all syncros, ground clearance is important.

I've managed to get a 2.5TDi 5 cyl into my Syncro 16 without having to raise the lid and without losing much ground clearance. I only dropped it an extra 20mm from stock.

The roof section at the front is a factory piece and came on late Westfalias inc the California and Atlantic and is meant to work with a sunroof. They're supposed to good for more mpg. I had one on Limey when I first fitted the roof but wanted the more storage space and was prepared to sacriface the mpg.

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