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Bus Depot CAT--Any Feedback
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Love My Westy
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 07, 2013 8:31 pm    Post subject: Bus Depot CAT--Any Feedback Reply with quote

I think I need a new catalytic converter. I don't live in California, and I don't know how long it will be until I will need to change engines, or buy a 10-cent exhaust system. I don't think rust-through will be an issue, as the guts seem to break apart long before the metal rots out (I don't live in the Northwest)

Any feedback on this? The price is certainly right.

http://www.busdepot.com/22918
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Love My Westy
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 08, 2013 12:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

After talking to my mechanic, I put one of these on order.
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LandSailor
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 08, 2013 12:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I failed my first smog test in Nevada and suspected that it might be the almost 30 year old cat. Might look into picking up one of these just to make life easier next year.
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Inlet
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 08, 2013 5:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I got one about a year ago from bus depot through a friend. I couldn't get it to seat correctly and had exhaust leaks because of the universal flanges... I ended up welding the flanges to the "pipe" and grinding down those flared out parts that keep the flanges from falling off to get the gaskets to seat correctly. The most important thing is it passed smog, for the price it was worth it and a big middle finger to CARB.
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Love My Westy
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 08, 2013 7:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

They advertise it as OEM, and Bosal is the brand my mechanic said he uses, so I hope it will fit ok.
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AtlasShrugged
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 08, 2013 9:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I used a BD OEM catalytic converter..made by Bosal about four years ago. Not the best fit on the Vanagon but made it work. It worked fine on the first emissions check....and failed NOX the year after.

It was still inside the 25k mile warranty. I called BD and was referred over to Bosal. Bosal warrantied the Cat and BD sent me a new Cat and I sent the old Cat to BD for a warranty swap..no problem. I paid for shipping.

The first emissions numbers on the warranty Bosal Cat in 10/2011 were super...the following year 2012..the NOX numbers were OK..this year 2013 the Bosal Cat failed NOX again.

Even though the warranty Bosal Cat is still inside the 25k mile warranty..I chose not to chase down another two year Bosal Cat.

After 2016 the 1991 Vanagon is exempt from emissions testing in Georgia. I need three more years on the replacement Cat for sure.

Ordered a Walker replacement Cat part number 15612 from RockAuto..$122.57 with all gaskets included and shipping. Walker has/had a $40 rebate on the Cat too. If I ever get the $40 the Cat the net cost is $82 and an hour to install the Cat.

Installed the new Walker Cat and passed emissions with flying colors.

The next few years will tell if the Walker Cat is more durable than the Bosal.

The Walker Cat was easier to fit and the stainless shell was completely round larger/thicker without the heat shields ..the stone inside looked to be about the same size as the Bosal..time will tell if it lasts better than the Bosal.
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bluebus86
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 08, 2013 9:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have heard some folks hollow out their dead cat for test purposes, and run a new cat only for smog tests. they say that keeps the good cat healthy for decades.

They have been called "shelf cats" cause they sit on the shelf most of the time.

Not that I would advocate such a thing, just saying..............
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AtlasShrugged
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 08, 2013 10:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

bluebus86 wrote:
I have heard some folks hollow out their dead cat for test purposes, and run a new cat only for smog tests. they say that keeps the good cat healthy for decades.

They have been called "shelf cats" cause they sit on the shelf most of the time.

Not that I would advocate such a thing, just saying..............


If I lived in the peoples republic of California and had to deal with the CARB $500 super duper special uber Cat regs..the notion of a "shelf cat" would be appealing.

Only takes an hour to swap.
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LandSailor
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 09, 2013 9:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Inlet wrote:
The most important thing is it passed smog, for the price it was worth it and a big middle finger to CARB.


Isn't it a huge, un-appealable fine if they inspect it and find that it doesn't have the CARB stamp?


Thanks for the info, Atlas. I will probably get one of those instead.
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shadetreetim
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PostPosted: Sat Nov 09, 2013 9:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

bluebus86 wrote:

They have been called "shelf cats" cause they sit on the shelf most of the time.


Theoretically, that shelf cat should be exercised prior to a smog inspection. A blue ribbon show quality shelf cat gets negative attention from the judges.
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Love My Westy
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 14, 2013 9:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I contacted Bus Depot and was able to change my order to an Emico brand CAT before they shipped it. It arrived yesterday and I will install it today. It is the same brand as the one I am replacing.
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kourt
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 14, 2013 10:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I just put in one of these Bus Depot cats, following a failed emissions test in Austin, Texas. Granted, I also did everything else (cap, rotor, wires, plugs, oil/filter fuel filter, air filter, ignition timing) but the van passed with flying colors. I mean really flying colors--I've never seen an emissions report as clean as this one.

The cat is a fine fit, and does the job. By this time next year, a Bostig Zetec will be in there, so I don't really care how long it holds out.

kourt
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MootPoint
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 28, 2015 1:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

New ping to an old thread:

I just ordered/received a new cat from BusDepot. It's a Walker 15612 model. I also received the two extra exhaust gaskets that are apparently required for installation and a new 02 sensor.

The cat also came with one extra thick gasket in the box and one ceramic-looking ring that doesn't appear to fit anything on either end of the cat. I assume these are for other applications and are discarded?

The new "additional" gaskets are not totally flat; they have a very small flange on one side. Does this face into the cat or not or does it matter?

Andů

The cat has a bung hold that fits the 02 sensor but I assume that stays upstream in its current location on the pipe. Do I plug this with the plug from the old cat or am I missing a part.

thanks.
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kamzcab86
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 28, 2015 3:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

MootPoint wrote:
The cat has a bung hold that fits the 02 sensor but I assume that stays upstream in its current location on the pipe. Do I plug this with the plug from the old cat or am I missing a part.


If your O2 sensor is mounted elsewhere upstream, then, yes, plug the cat port. The 2.1L's (later ones, if not all) have the O2 sensor mounted in their cat converters; since it is a universal-type cat for a variety of VW's, it comes with the O2 bung.
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MootPoint
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 28, 2015 4:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks, Kam - Any thoughts on the 'extra' gaskets that came with the cat? I assume (but you know what happens when I ass-u-me) they are for some other application, no?
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kamzcab86
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 28, 2015 4:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

MootPoint wrote:
Thanks, Kam - Any thoughts on the 'extra' gaskets that came with the cat? I assume (but you know what happens when I ass-u-me) they are for some other application, no?


The last untouched component on my van is the exhaust system (amazingly, still readily passes emissions); i.e. haven't had to buy a cat yet. But I would venture to guess that the "extras" are for other applications. The parts catalog shows the exact same gasket before and after the cat (the same gasket BD has you buy separately) and nothing else.
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MootPoint
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 28, 2015 8:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yep - I ordered the two gaskets (extra) from BD that they say are required but not included. The gasket that came with the cat is about 3/16-inch thick. The two other from BD are about 1/64 or less. Thin! The extra casket in the kit looks as if it could seal the effluence from Congress.

But the two new gaskets do have a "flange" on one side, a tiny bulge around the exhaust pathway that is slightly thick on one side, but not the other. So I'm assuming (there I go again) that the flange faces the cat and not the pipe. Or not...

Some slightly more detailed instructions from BD would be appreciated. That's one thing I like about GW: their instructions. Perhaps that's worth the extra $$$.
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Terry Kay
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 28, 2015 8:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

"Some slightly more detailed instructions from BD would be appreciated. "


That's extra--$$$
Ronnie has to cut corners somewhere--
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MootPoint
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 28, 2015 8:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Especially after his beautiful Westy was flattened by a tree. I can only grumble so much. BD had been a great service (and alternative) to some other vendors. Nudge. Nudge. Wink. Wink.

Not YOU, of course...
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kamzcab86
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 28, 2015 9:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

MootPoint wrote:
Yep - I ordered the two gaskets (extra) from BD that they say are required but not included. The gasket that came with the cat is about 3/16-inch thick. The two other from BD are about 1/64 or less. Thin!


To be fair, the gaskets that came with my Cabriolet's cat were that thin too.

MootPoint wrote:
The cat also came with one extra thick gasket in the box and one ceramic-looking ring that doesn't appear to fit anything on either end of the cat. I assume these are for other applications and are discarded?


Since I'm on Van Cafe's site putting yet more parts into the shopping cart, I took a look at the exhaust section to see if there was clarification for ^that:

"**Gaskets and hardware are included. On inlet side, the gasket you need is dictated by the flange on the pipe that attaches to the cat. If it is flat then you are fine with a gasket; if that pipe is beveled and only accepts a donut on that side then you still must stick with the donut and although it is not an ideal mating surface against the non-beveled surface on the cat side, we find it seals fine (we supply both gasket and donut so you are prepared either way)."

And, since I'm on GoWesty's site ordering center caps, I looked there too. Here's the "donut" VC is talking about, installed:

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


Perhaps call BD, VC, and/or GW tomorrow to ask them about the gasket bevel/"flange" issue?
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