Ditch OR continue??
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Thread: Ditch OR continue??

  1. #1
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    Default Ditch OR continue??

    I'm a bit torn.

    I'm a bit of s16 die-hard fan, and have had 3 in total.

    The one I bought my most recently was from interstate from a dodgy bloke in SA pretending to be a genuine human! Despite his assurances, it did leak oil, it was overheating (someone had left a pair of pliers at the bottom of one of the radiator fans), it had a snapped rocket cover bolt, the air filter wasn't even connected to the resonator box (allowing about 2ltrs of water to be being sucked into the engine as I went through a deep puddle), and there was a rag left in the power steering reservoir giving terrible steering). He even overcharged me $500 bucks to release it from his "courier". To top it off, after all of this, it seized a piston and blew a hole in chamber 1 after about 2K. Awesome!

    Luckily, I had an engine from a project I had to abandon due to moving (a little while back).

    I got the block bored, the head skimmed and reconditioned, new wiseco pistons/rings, yada yada and got it going again. I didn't have a lot of time as it was parked outside on a friends property about 100kms from home, so it wasn't a "perfect dream and sterile rebuild" due to deadlines. Also, it wasn't perfect because Dapco gave my dad the wrong parts on three separate occasion times. I really dislike the guy and because of him, I'm not running a brand new head gasket, which makes me feel very nervous. And despite giving him the VIN and the correct part number, he sold my dad the parts and assured him it was right (you can't be everywhere are once checking up on people!) We probably all know dodgy guys who say they have the part, give you the wrong one, and in the time it takes for you to try and install it and come back, has ordered the right one. Don't trust this guy! Do your due diligence.

    Anyway, it's been running reasonably well, but about 3K in, the inlet manifold exploded. I'm wondering it's a fuel pressure or regulator issue - it's also has a bit of trouble starting on cold. When the engine was freshly built, it started in an instant. Now you've got wait for oil pressure to build and pump the accelerator to get it going. If you turn the car off and turn back on within 15 minutes, starts up fine. Let the engine cool, and it takes a while. Let the car sit for a few days, and it starts fine. Strange.

    I don't know whether to continue. I love driving it. I drive it hard, but I don't feel confident in the state of several things. Sure I can get it going again with another induction manifold, but how long until I'm in the bay again! Being over 20 years old, a lot of the connectors are in a pretty poor state (and oil pressure gauge is dicky). I think I need to do the cam seals too - I've noticed a few drops of oil around the top of the block near the vacuum pump. I've worked on it so much I'm losing my "drive" to continue. What are your thoughts? I've even got new eibachs and new shocks etc to install...

    I wondered if it would be better to drop the ACAV system and look at gti6 induction? Or could I pay someone here to work on it and install a different engine management system and get more out of it?

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    I guess what I'm getting at is, should I feed more $$ into it, or look for something newer. I'm at the point where I'm either about to drop 10K on something newer, or happy to spend $5K on the car if someone can build it to be solid. What do you think my chances are? I know there's some guys on here that have done it (or may offer such a service), so please, give me your thoughts, or even pm me and we can chat on the phone. There's so much money already invested in the car, but I've been thinking lately should I cut my losses as I'm not confident about it's reliability long term to continue. Is the Bosch 3.2 too complicated? Ah so many questions!

  2. #2
    1000+ Posts Richard W's Avatar
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    How beautiful is the rest of the car? Paying someone else to sort out issues is likely to be expensive and the scope of work will inevitably expand well past what you originally intended. For whatever reason, the S16 doesn't seem to be on the 'classic' trajectory in the same way as the GTi6.

    For my money, I think you'd be better off to run the s16 as it is for a while and start a search to put the money you were proposing to spend on the S16 into a really nice GTi6. Probably less money spent in total and at the end of the day you'd have a good example of an appreciating model rather than a dodgy example of a slower and less loved model....

  3. #3
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    The body is pretty damn good and so is the interior. Full leather, tinted glass, unfogged headlights and indicators. Brand new rubber on all fours.

    I think you raise a good point. The s16 isn't really loved that much, I assume because they can difficult to work on and hard to get parts for, and there weren't heaps of examples brought here. I do prefer the styling a little more with the s16 than the 6 (especially dials and stuff - some of the 6 stuff is cheesy), and I hear the handling is perhaps a little sharper too in the 16, but I've never liked the twitchiness of the passive rear steering (rubber mounts for rear beam) that can be a bit whippy and lifty coming into a turn while braking or hitting bumps (or during sudden slalom). I've got solid mounts for that now. Having a 6th gear would be nice. Hmm. I wonder though, if having a good example s16 wold be deemed a "valuable" rarity, could this help at all. I doubt it.
    FedGrapes likes this.

  4. #4
    Fellow Frogger! FedGrapes's Avatar
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    S16's aren't likely to valuable ever, because they didn't grab the imagination of a generation like the 205's did. They'll be our little secret, Mingus!

  5. #5
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    I had the same difficult decision to make recently with my S16 which has never run properly since owning the car for 3 Yearís now Iíve had the car repainted and didnít really want to get rid of it but the running problem really got me down I didnít enjoy driving the car I eventually found the ECU was smelling a little burnt inside I was at the stage you are at now and to cap it all off the vehicle overheated badly one day and I believe the head gasket is gone as the cooling system is now pressurising so after much thought Iíve decided to replace the head gasket and fit a aftermarket ECU Iím also supercharging it to get some much needed power I have most of the parts now but Iím having difficulty sourcing a head gasket. I have sourced much of my parts from the UK including the ECU I found Spoox motorsport to be very helpful and I recently visited them while on holiday in the UK. Iím going to run low boost to save money and use stock internals and a Omex ECU which you can program yourself if you desire. Once I have the head gasket the work will commence ( I might start a thread on here to show the progress) it should be an interesting build and Iím very excited to get started now as I want the build complete by Xmas so I can still attend some car meetings through the summer even with a low boost set up I should be achieving around 250 hp maybe a little more which is better than the 150hp the standard engine has. I came to the decision to spend the money on my car as I thought if I put $5k into another car what would I get and after initially buying the vehicle I would be spending that again to get the car how I wanted it to look/perform. I agree that the Bosch 3.2 is too complicated and would look at changing to a 6 induction set up ( I have an unlocked 6 ecu if you are interested) this was my first plan for my S16. I hope you decide to keep the car and work to get the engine running well as I feel the S16ís were underrated and are great fun to drive when running well I canít wait to drive mine again. If you need the S16 inlet then let me know as mine will be up for grabs soon.

  6. #6
    1000+ Posts jo proffi's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by turbo pug View Post
    …... I thought if I put $5k into another car what would I get
    About 80% of a megane 225.
    No modification needed.
    Jo

  7. #7
    Fellow Frogger! N5GTi6's Avatar
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    Any old car like that is a financial loss and you're not keeping it realistically for financial reasons, but for reasons of passion. You keep a car like that because it ignites something inside you, and because you get the gratification that comes from the personal relationship you have with the car.

    Such a personal decision can't be taken lightly.

    Cheers

    Justin
    Dano and FedGrapes like this.
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  8. #8
    Tadpole
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    I have no heart to tell you to ditch it, but… You know. If you lost the passion for the project, then the decision is relatively easy.

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