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Rebuilding: 1.6TD JX Turbo Diesel engine
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epowell
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 16, 2017 7:02 am    Post subject: Rebuilding: 1.6TD JX Turbo Diesel engine Reply with quote

Hi Folks

I am now beginning to take steps towards my long-range goal of rebuilding a spare JX block that I acquired. I would seriously like some help with this undertaking since I have never done such a thing previously. It will still be some time before I actually begin the work > in the meantime I would now like to begin to read and study up on just exactly is going to be required in terms of procedure, tools, skills, specs, shop help... etc. Does anyone know of any good threads (here or elsewhere) documenting this? Any other sources of info which might be useful?

My extra JX block is in very good condition except for that one cylinder got a bit rusty during storage and will certainly need some machining. So can I assume that my first major step would be to find a top notch local machinist - take the block there - get their opinions regarding what work will be required?

How else can I now prepare myself for this project?

Thanks!
Edward
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epowell
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 16, 2017 12:10 pm    Post subject: Re: Rebuilding: 1.6TD JX Turbo Diesel engine Reply with quote

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First 3 "clean" cylinders
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Rusty cylinder
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Rusty cylinder after a bit of light sanding
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MarkWard
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 16, 2017 12:44 pm    Post subject: Re: Rebuilding: 1.6TD JX Turbo Diesel engine Reply with quote

I see a "scuff" on one of the piston skirts. I imagine you are going to have the cylinders bored out? You will want to remove the oil squirters prior to having any type of cylinder work done.
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 16, 2017 12:52 pm    Post subject: Re: Rebuilding: 1.6TD JX Turbo Diesel engine Reply with quote

MarkWard wrote:
I see a "scuff" on one of the piston skirts. I imagine you are going to have the cylinders bored out? You will want to remove the oil squirters prior to having any type of cylinder work done.


A guy on vwdiesel.net suggesting that machine shop work would not be necessary, but I don't see how that can be the case.

I am going to need new pistons also, no??
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epowell
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 16, 2017 1:00 pm    Post subject: Re: Rebuilding: 1.6TD JX Turbo Diesel engine Reply with quote

One question regarding the necessity of a rebuild. My engine currently runs very very nicely -- but does smoke somewhat, and is pretty gutless. Is it the case that if I would just keep driving this engine - considering all the work I have done on it so far - it would most likely keep running for quite some time, but just slowly get weaker and weaker and more and more smokey?

Would the advantage of the rebuild be:
- much less smoke
- much more power
- better fuel economy
- reduced risk of sudden death on a trip
- reduced wear on other engine components (?)
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 17, 2017 1:14 pm    Post subject: Re: Rebuilding: 1.6TD JX Turbo Diesel engine Reply with quote

Edward, saw your other post about transaxles. I know you are familiar with the 1.6 TD and for its time, was about the best diesel engine you could get from VW.

My suggestion would be to not put time and money into your spare long block featured in this thread. I would instead look at converting to a more modern vw diesel in the future.

Our vanagon was originally a 1.6 NA powered engine. I installed a newer 1.9 TDI engine from a 98 VW Beetle. It was a low mileage engine. I originally mated it to an air cooled vanagon transmission with taller tires. I think for the type of driving your prefer, this would be a better alternative to sinking money into another 1.6 TD overhaul. You can also fit these later diesel engines with a mechanical injection pump like you are familiar with.

The torque for going over hills and passes is awesome. With the setup I described above, I was turning about 3000 rpm at 62 mph. Averaging 45 mph I was seeing 36 us mpg which was about 6 more than the original vanagon was EPA rated for.

Just something to think about. More parts availability, Transmission selection becomes less important, because now you have some power to pull some taller gears.

There is a member here that I have corresponded with. Andy Bees. He documented his entire TDI conversion on the TDI club website. His thread is about as long as one of yours. Very detailed including pitfalls. Well worth the read. I don't have much documentation of my conversion since the internet had not been invented when I did mine. But I'd be glad to answer any questions you might have. mark
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 17, 2017 1:35 pm    Post subject: Re: Rebuilding: 1.6TD JX Turbo Diesel engine Reply with quote

Thanks Mark... I really do appreciate your comments and input. I do however think I will stick with a JX, at least for this van. I love the simplicity... and also in this country it is illegal to sell the van unless it has the original engine type in it > so if one day I suddenly want to sell, then I am outta luck with a TDI.

Also I just dropped a pile of dough on the new JX head... and I already have the extra block... so I will go ahead and stick with a JX.

However I do think that getting a correct gearbox and also a K14 turbo in there will make a huge performance difference without having to go with another engine type. As it is now I am far far away from even getting max power out of the JX that I HAVE. Smile
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 17, 2017 1:44 pm    Post subject: Re: Rebuilding: 1.6TD JX Turbo Diesel engine Reply with quote

..also... I think if I ever find myself living in Vancouver again and buying a van over there, most likely I will go the TDI route at that time. But over here JX engines are very common.
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nekto
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 6:14 am    Post subject: Re: Rebuilding: 1.6TD JX Turbo Diesel engine Reply with quote

as someone who spent a bit of time in a shop rebuilding engines, i can say, with strong confidence, that what the cylinders and piston look like is less important than what they measure.
you have to do a lot of rebuilds before you can read the wear, with anything close to accuracy, and even then, looks can be deceiving.
i've been told the tolerances on VW NA Diesel engines are fairly tight. that makes accurate eyeball assessments more difficult.
you really won't know what those cylinders need, until someone who knows how to do it makes an accurate measurement with a micrometer.
if you need to bore the cylinders, you definitely need new pistons. the precise measurement for the cylinder bore is determined by measuring the pistons.

as to your questions about the engine you are currently running getting smokier and weaker, that sounds, off the top, like worn rings.
it could also be worn oil seals in the turbo, or a combination of both. (there are other possibilities that are far less probable)
from my experience, the most common failure mode when the rings get weak is, it just won't start cold one fine day. you can check for blow by at the breather. if you get fairly strong air flow out of the top of the engine, it is time for some engine work. sometimes those engines will start and run when the blow by puts enough pressure in the crankcase to force the oil out the dipstick tube.
and, yes, a rebuilt engine will make all this better. more power, less smoke, easier starting, and better fuel mileage.
(i hope this helps, and i hope i didn't waste your time telling you things you already know.)
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 6:47 am    Post subject: Re: Rebuilding: 1.6TD JX Turbo Diesel engine Reply with quote

As told, get the parts to a reputable machine shop specialized to engine rebuilding and they will tell if honing (cylinder resurfacing) is enough in your case or boring to oversize with new pistons needed.
As these VW blocks are similar since the late 70s and they were used in Skodas to the mid 2000s there is low risk that they cannot work with it.
BUT it may cost a lot. That is why its common to change those to more recent 1.9 engines (either direct or indirect injection ones) even illegally.
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 18, 2017 7:09 am    Post subject: Re: Rebuilding: 1.6TD JX Turbo Diesel engine Reply with quote

Thanks guys... all helpful comments and advice. I am first off going to buy some measuring tools and try to get an idea on my own... then take to a shop. I want the shop to know that I have measuring tools so they will be aware that I can analyze their work Wink
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 19, 2017 2:49 am    Post subject: Re: Rebuilding: 1.6TD JX Turbo Diesel engine Reply with quote

Read the size of the old pistons. Let the mashine shop bore the block to next oversized pistons minus 5/100 mm.
If there are no more scrahes on the bores, buy new oversizes pistons. Give them to the mashine shop and let them hone/bore the block exactly for the new pistons with 5-6/100 mm clearance.

With the amount of different pistons from different brands the size can vary.
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 19, 2017 5:38 am    Post subject: Re: Rebuilding: 1.6TD JX Turbo Diesel engine Reply with quote

epowell wrote:
Thanks guys... all helpful comments and advice. I am first off going to buy some measuring tools and try to get an idea on my own... then take to a shop. I want the shop to know that I have measuring tools so they will be aware that I can analyze their work Wink


in the shops i worked in, we always used what we called a snap gauge for cylinder measurement. it takes some practice to get the feel of using it properly. i believe that is true of any internal measuring tool.
i recommend that you practice measuring a cylinder at the same place until you get a consistent measurement, then practice some more.
once i got the hang of it, i found it to be one of the fun parts of the job.

and, you're welcome to any advice or insight i have to offer
(... as long as you realize it might be worth exactly what you paid for it!)
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PostPosted: Wed May 01, 2019 9:28 am    Post subject: Re: Rebuilding: 1.6TD JX Turbo Diesel engine Reply with quote

nekto wrote:

in the shops i worked in, we always used what we called a snap gauge for cylinder measurement. it takes some practice to get the feel of using it properly. i believe that is true of any internal measuring tool.
i recommend that you practice measuring a cylinder at the same place until you get a consistent measurement, then practice some more.


OK, it's time to revive this thread, now that my transmission swapping is complete - and I have 2 spare transmissions I can now relax a bit regarding gearboxes...

So the next major vulnerability on my plate is the engine itself....
> I have still not located a machine shop to suss out my what my block needs... but will do this shortly.

My first question is, SPECIFICALLY what measuring tools will I need to buy. I want to be able to measure everything myself with utmost accuracy so that I can make sure the machine shop does the job properly.

Thanks
ED

EDIT: a good vid showing rods and pistons balancing
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZPBAB8aSURI
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PostPosted: Wed May 01, 2019 9:51 am    Post subject: Re: Rebuilding: 1.6TD JX Turbo Diesel engine Reply with quote

For checking bearing clearances, plastigauge works fine. The tools you need are a quality micrometer and a bore gauge you can zero out. The bore gauge with enough adapters even used is not going to be cheap.

I own some assorted micrometers, feeler blades, depth gauges and dial indicator setups. I do not own a bore gauge.

I would not use a machine shop that I could not trust to make the measurements and do the work correctly. That is what you are paying for. If I have to double check their work, that is the wrong machine shop to be using.

Micrometers and bore gauges have a feel you need to learn as well. I can squeeze .004 out of my micrometer. Snap gauges work ok, but you need a micrometer to measure them after you snap the bore, and that is a feel thing to. There is bound to be some you tube videos on how to check cylinder bore and taper. How to check bearing journals, straightness of the crankshaft. Watch some of those and then decide if your time is not better spent looking for a good dependable machine shop.
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PostPosted: Wed May 01, 2019 10:01 am    Post subject: Re: Rebuilding: 1.6TD JX Turbo Diesel engine Reply with quote

MarkWard wrote:
For checking bearing clearances, plastigauge works fine. The tools you need are a quality micrometer and a bore gauge you can zero out. The bore gauge with enough adapters even used is not going to be cheap.

I own some assorted micrometers, feeler blades, depth gauges and dial indicator setups. I do not own a bore gauge.

I would not use a machine shop that I could not trust to make the measurements and do the work correctly. That is what you are paying for. If I have to double check their work, that is the wrong machine shop to be using.

Micrometers and bore gauges have a feel you need to learn as well. I can squeeze .004 out of my micrometer. Snap gauges work ok, but you need a micrometer to measure them after you snap the bore, and that is a feel thing to. There is bound to be some you tube videos on how to check cylinder bore and taper. How to check bearing journals, straightness of the crankshaft. Watch some of those and then decide if your time is not better spent looking for a good dependable machine shop.


OK, I get what you are saying... so in fact the best approach is to really make sure I find the right guy in the right machineshop, and trust them to do it right.

For my injection pump rebuild I went to the Czech T3 community and asked for a recommendation. I was recommended a guy who rebuilt my pump amazingly well for very cheap.
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PostPosted: Wed May 01, 2019 10:29 am    Post subject: Re: Rebuilding: 1.6TD JX Turbo Diesel engine Reply with quote

I would be looking at the motorsports community to find a decent machine shop. Successful racing engines depend on correct tolerances.
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PostPosted: Wed May 01, 2019 11:26 am    Post subject: Re: Rebuilding: 1.6TD JX Turbo Diesel engine Reply with quote

MarkWard wrote:
looking at the motorsports community to find a decent machine shop.


Good suggestion... I'll do that. Tricky here in Czech, but things are cheaper here.

So I'm trying to get a zoomed out general overview of the entire rebuild process... can it be something like this:
1) find reliable machinist
2) source appropriate new pistons if necessary (probably is necessary)
3) I have a new JX HEAD already waiting
4) have block machine work done TO the new piston sizes
5) assemble into block: crank, bearings, rods, pistons, rings
6) is it best to install head while block in on the bench? I am concerned about weight.... I think it might be easier to install just the block into the van first > then add the HEAD, PUMP, WATERPUMP, ALTERNATOR etc etc... ....or?
7) of course there are a lot of extras to deal with like intermediate shaft bearings, vacuum pump, oil pump etc
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PostPosted: Wed May 01, 2019 12:13 pm    Post subject: Re: Rebuilding: 1.6TD JX Turbo Diesel engine Reply with quote

You are going to want to replace the intermediate shaft bearings most likely. There are 2 versions. One style presses in and is ready to go. The other version presses in, but needs to be fitted to the intermediate shaft. You get a better result with the fitted shaft bearings.

The diesel engine was really designed to be assembled and setup in an engine stand including the pump and cam timing. You swing it in, connect a couple wires and you are running.

You could do it the way you describe, but aside from clearances, cleanliness is the next important thing. Assembling an engine in stand out of the elements will yield a better result. Doing it outside not so much and the head gasket is going to fight you the entire way. Speaking of head gaskets, there are multiple thickness gaskets and you should follow the manual and determine what thickness you will need based on your assembled piston height. There is no quick way to build a reliable engine.

My engines get assembled twice before the final assembly.

You should have the block checked before you order oversized pistons. Its possible that the first oversize may not be enough or you may find the block has oversize pistons already.
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PostPosted: Wed May 01, 2019 12:41 pm    Post subject: Re: Rebuilding: 1.6TD JX Turbo Diesel engine Reply with quote

I can see now that the most challenging part is going to be moving the engine from the workplace to the car and into the car....

I have a place to work on it inside, but it is upstairs > really not sure how I could carry it downstairs > maybe on a dolly with a couple of helpers?

Perhaps I need to buy or make an engine holder, and also an engine crane/jack (or what do you call them?? Hoist?)

PS. I do have a 2 square meter closet right near the back door of the house which I could clean out and use to work in... maybe that would be the best > at least for the final assembly.
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