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05 Rebuild in Alaska


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Starting this out with a short story.

 

Car is an 05 LGT Wagon Satin White Pearl, MT, Non-limited (sadly but it's what i could find).

 

I bought it from a dealership that disclosed the turbo had blown and they'd replaced it. Was replaced with a Rotomax turbo that I'm assuming they got from Rockauto or Autozone. it worked beautifully for over a year. Then i got the "i want to go faster bug" and installed ELH, up-pipe, downpipe, vf39 turbo, Electronic Boost Control Solenoid, FMIC, and a Water methanol injection kit due to Alaska only having 90 octane gas.

 

She was e-Tuned by an amazing tuner i found on Nasioc, ShijnjiTuned. She was running great then the front AF sensor died, i'm assuming due to 1 of two things. Too rich or burning too much oil. I changed it out a couple months ago and it resolved the bouncing A/F mixture i was picking up on my wideband. under light throttle or cruising the engine would dump fuel then pull fuel, then dump, then pull.

 

I should mention that she has been drinking oil since the day i brought her home. I'm talking 1 qt ever 300 miles or so. I kept a 5 quart jug in the back passenger footwell and checked the oil every day. I knew the engine was on her way out, so this isn't unexpected, and I had planned on rebuilding it in the summer. because winter sucks.

 

About a month ago, the sensor died again and as it's winter and i don't really get into boost i took my time to replace the sensor. 10 days ago she developed a slight knocking sound. only under light throttle. it started getting worse, then the other day, i was driving to work. Started her up and she knocked pretty bad 4-5 times as it was starting then it went away. I figured i could make it to work and back. I was wrong. I was stopped at a light and she knocked 5-6 times really bad and the engine died. now she doesn't turn over.

 

And so here I am. I'm debating between an OEM shortblock or an IAG stage 2. I may be IAG stage 2 tuff because there isn't a 3 week wait on it, but that depends on whether or not the shop can get my heads done quickly.

 

I have a spare STI engine that also had a bearing failure that i picked up off some kid on craigslist. I've got the heads off and that engine already has ARP head studs which i will be removing and adding to the new block.

 

I haven't pulled my engine yet, but I've done it on my STI 4 times so i'm pretty good at it. the legacy actually looks a little easier. We'll find out.

 

 

TL : DR Engine died, need a new one. will be updating this thread and things develop.

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Got the heads dropped off at the shop. So far they've quoted me $820, that's before they've even started working on them. We'll see what this adventure ends up costing me.

 

Has anyone cleaned out their AVCS Gears and is it worth cleaning them out to save $300?

 

I'm also considering getting an external oil cooler as one can be assembled for less than the cost of the OEM water cooled one. The guy i talked to up here said that the oil cooler being water cooled means that the oil is always running hot which can be an issue, especially if you're on it hard. I mostly drive in the city but lets be real, i didn't upgrade my stuff to never drive it hard. I figure i may as well get an external oil cooler. I like the perrin kit but damn dude, $700? yeah nah. i'm not made of liquid.

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Amsoil makes a kit with external filters. HAMMERDOWN had oe on his car, search for post by him.

 

I just run the stock system and use Amsoil 5w-40 European Classic oil, after sending a sample to Blackstone labs, I do 7000 mile oil changes using their filter EA15K13, if I recall that number correctly.

305,600miles 5/2012 ej257 short block, 8/2011 installed VF52 turbo, @20.8psi, 280whp, 300ftlbs. (SOLD).  CHECK your oil, these cars use it.

 

Engine Build - Click Here

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A few of us have cleaned the gears. I documented it on my build page HERE.

The two issues are a) you cannot get new gaskets, and with these cars now being 13-14 years old, you may damage the gasket on disassembly, or it may not seal on assembly, and b) you need to be careful about alignment on reassembly.

 

OUTFRONT MOTORSPORTS used to rebuild them for a fee, and I assume they stood behind their work. Being in Alaska is not the most convenient for shipping parts back and forth if there are problems.

 

Got the heads dropped off at the shop. So far they've quoted me $820, that's before they've even started working on them. We'll see what this adventure ends up costing me.

 

Has anyone cleaned out their AVCS Gears and is it worth cleaning them out to save $300?

 

I'm also considering getting an external oil cooler as one can be assembled for less than the cost of the OEM water cooled one. The guy i talked to up here said that the oil cooler being water cooled means that the oil is always running hot which can be an issue, especially if you're on it hard. I mostly drive in the city but lets be real, i didn't upgrade my stuff to never drive it hard. I figure i may as well get an external oil cooler. I like the perrin kit but damn dude, $700? yeah nah. i'm not made of liquid.

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Yeah, Alaska pretty much sucks balls for everything except remoteness. Which I don't care for. Last year I spent over 1000 on shipping of parts and what not that would have come my $0 if I lived in America (see lower 48). That's annoying.

 

I plan on just buying new. Like you said, they're over a decade old now and I may as well just replace.

 

UPDATE:

I haven't heard from the shop yet on the heads. They told me the latest they'd get to them would he Wednesday. Well that came and went so I'll be calling them tomorrow. I need to know if they're usable and how much it's going to cost me before I choose a shortblock, so we're at a standstill until they get done. Then I'll order parts and wait a week or two for delivery, though rallysport direct and import image racing ship super fast. Amazon however takes 10-14 days from me clicking buy to the parts getting into my hands. Amazon sucks.

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Ya, I feel your pain. I'm on Vancouver Island where everything is slow, plus I get the automatic +25% Canadian reverse discount on everything I buy . . .

 

I think it is unusual for the heads not to be rebuildable, unless they were heavily decked before. But it can get expensive if you need all new parts.

 

Yeah, Alaska pretty much sucks balls for everything except remoteness. Which I don't care for. Last year I spent over 1000 on shipping of parts and what not that would have come my $0 if I lived in America (see lower 48). That's annoying.

 

I plan on just buying new. Like you said, they're over a decade old now and I may as well just replace.

 

UPDATE:

I haven't heard from the shop yet on the heads. They told me the latest they'd get to them would he Wednesday. Well that came and went so I'll be calling them tomorrow. I need to know if they're usable and how much it's going to cost me before I choose a shortblock, so we're at a standstill until they get done. Then I'll order parts and wait a week or two for delivery, though rallysport direct and import image racing ship super fast. Amazon however takes 10-14 days from me clicking buy to the parts getting into my hands. Amazon sucks.

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Shop says heads are good. Should be done by the end of the week (that means next week). The quoted price of $820 is staying the same.

 

I can check with the dealership up about a discount on OEM gaskets with a shortblock purchase, but I'm doubtful. Alaska sucks. If I haven't mentioned that before.

 

Tomorrow I start buying parts. Hoping the dealership has a shortblock in stock or it pushes it back 5-7 business days. I'd REALLY like to get this done before March 1.

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Got the shortblock

 

10103AC870

$2137.14 out the door.

 

Also bought Cam gears and oil control valves and an oil pump. I considered cleaning mine, but I figured they had 155k miles on them, better to just replace. And I don't have to worry about botching the job.

Also got an IAG Stock Location Turbo Oil Feed & AVCS Lines kit, because why not. And a Cobb turbo inlet. Couldn't find any comparison between perrins $270 inlet and Cobb's $195 inlet. OEM was around $160.

Also got a gasket kit, thermostat.

 

I don't recall if I mentioned it and I don't feel like reading because I'm on my phone. My spare block already had ARP head studs that I'll be putting onto the new block.

 

Tore that one apart and there was serious bearing damage on cylinder.... 1. Or 4. I forget. One on the end. Will be tossing the crank and rods in the bin. Had wiseco pistons that still look fine so I'll see if I can get a new crank rods and bearings and throw it together sometime and have a staged block ready to go. Or I'll just sell the parts and let someone else do what they want. I haven't decided yet. Block seems in decent order other than bearing material everywhere.

 

Considering a new oil pan, already have a moroso oil pickup I'll be using.

 

Hope I'm not forgetting anything. Today was an expensive day.

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See if the machine shop will put the oil pan and valve covers in there parts washer. Get them nice and clean. Then inspect them with a good light and mirrors if needed.

 

You might want a new oil cooler if you think yours may have metal in it. The cooler will release the metal over time taking out the new engine.

305,600miles 5/2012 ej257 short block, 8/2011 installed VF52 turbo, @20.8psi, 280whp, 300ftlbs. (SOLD).  CHECK your oil, these cars use it.

 

Engine Build - Click Here

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it was late when i typed that up.

 

I got an oil cooler. i was going to get an external one because they're cheaper, but with shipping it came out to the same price as OEM. Thanks alaska. you've screwed me over again. I've already thrown the old one in the trash and it's been taken far away from me. annoying that that thing is $230, but it is with it is.

 

That's actually a really good idea. i'll head down there today and see if they'll do it. way better than me cleaning it with mineral spirits and brake cleaner. Thanks!

 

Based on how much metal crap i've found everywhere, i guarantee there's metal in all the oil system, hence why i'm buying new cam gears, oil pump, and OCV's. i really hope the shop cleans my heads properly. is there any tips? I asked if they take out the hex bolts. they said the take some out but not all. Which ones need to come out to fully clean the heads? there's 2 small ones under the cams shafts, and a couple other sized ones here and there. Should I remove all? I tried to remove the small ones but i ended up bending my allen wrench.

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In my case, the local dealer (only one) used the same machine shop as me for all their head work --- 2-3 sets per week. So I just let them do what they do and didn't ask too many questions. Price was in line with what you are getting.

 

Anchorage is not a huge place; if you have only one dealer, they probably use one machine shop and if that is your shop, you should be good.

 

Tip: When you install the heads and cams, check that everything turns easily. There is a good chance one or more cams will bind. Nobody tells you about that. It is fixed by light taps with a soft faced hammer on the caps as you torque them down. You have to find the sweet spot. If this doesn't work, then check flatness down the saddles to make sure they accounted for any warp in the head.

 

Second Tip: after everything is installed, but still on the stand, recheck the valve lash. Nothing worse than having some misfire problem show up on the new engine that could in principle be a valve clearance problem. Changing buckets out on an installed engine is not that fun.

 

it was late when i typed that up.

 

I got an oil cooler. i was going to get an external one because they're cheaper, but with shipping it came out to the same price as OEM. Thanks alaska. you've screwed me over again. I've already thrown the old one in the trash and it's been taken far away from me. annoying that that thing is $230, but it is with it is.

 

That's actually a really good idea. i'll head down there today and see if they'll do it. way better than me cleaning it with mineral spirits and brake cleaner. Thanks!

 

Based on how much metal crap i've found everywhere, i guarantee there's metal in all the oil system, hence why i'm buying new cam gears, oil pump, and OCV's. i really hope the shop cleans my heads properly. is there any tips? I asked if they take out the hex bolts. they said the take some out but not all. Which ones need to come out to fully clean the heads? there's 2 small ones under the cams shafts, and a couple other sized ones here and there. Should I remove all? I tried to remove the small ones but i ended up bending my allen wrench.

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There a good video or something teaching my how to check valve lash? I have no idea of how to do that.

 

I took my head's to a Shop that a lot of the guys on the Subaru Facebook group use, so I'm confident in their abilities, I'm just worried about bearing debris.

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Checking clearance is the same as on any other engine. Intakes are on the top, exhaust on the bottom. Put the cam of interest in position so the base circle faces the bucket that sits over the valve and the lobe points away. Check with a couple of feeler gauges above and below the target clearance (see manual). If you feel a light drag at the target clearance that is ideal. A thou or so either way is not a big deal. All this is super easy with the timing belt off. Just make sure your crank is in neutral position (the setup position for installing belt) before you start so you don't jam the valves.

 

Correcting clearance that is not to spec is a whole different thing. You have to measure, calculate, take out the cam, bucket, mic the bucket and order a new one (thicker or thinner according to your calculation).

 

There may be a walkthrough on this somewhere in the forum. I'm not sure.

 

There a good video or something teaching my how to check valve lash? I have no idea of how to do that.

 

I took my head's to a Shop that a lot of the guys on the Subaru Facebook group use, so I'm confident in their abilities, I'm just worried about bearing debris.

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Thanks, i found an awesome video on youtube. It's kinda long but hits all the important parts and makes it look easy. other than the paying for new buckets part. Dude says they were around $20 each.

 

I wouldn't have thought to do it had you not mentioned it so thanks!

 

here's the video if anyone stumbles on this thread in the future.

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Yep, that's the process.

 

Too much sealant on the front basket assembly! Yikes. See those little grooves? Oil return lines from the hydraulic cam gears. If they get blocked with sealant, then you'll blow out your cam seals and ruin your new timing belt. And make a big mess in the process. Do it like it shows in the manual; a small continuous bead going the right way around the cap bolts. I think I have a suggestion about how to do that in my build thread.

 

You will be doing this without the timing belt installed, so make sure the pistons are in neutral position before spinning the cams. Probably you won't need to change anything, but by checking on the stand, you can rule out valve clearance problems if you need to troubleshoot a running issue with the installed engine.

 

In the video, the timing belt was being changed. In that case, I would have pulled the belt before trying to measure the lash. Much easier if you can spin one cam at at time. And, make sure each lobe is pointing directly away from the bucket when you measure. Video was a little careless on that. At the very least, I would have removed the spark plugs to make cranking the engine around by hand a little easier!

 

 

 

Thanks, i found an awesome video on youtube. It's kinda long but hits all the important parts and makes it look easy. other than the paying for new buckets part. Dude says they were around $20 each.

 

I wouldn't have thought to do it had you not mentioned it so thanks!

 

here's the video if anyone stumbles on this thread in the future.

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nice to see another quick legacy in alaska! I was beginning to think I was the only one modding this platform. i split my cylinder liner on my LGT just over a year ago now. Still havent gotten the money together for a closed deck motor. Note to self 450+whp is a no no on stock liners :(
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Thanks.

 

Parts are all here, got my garage sorted. Tomorrow extraction begins. Looking at it, it looks easier than the STI. We'll see. I got pretty good at removing and installing the STI. My least favorite part is draining the radiator because it makes a huge mess.

 

I have the service manual for the STI, which I'll be using for most of assembly. I'll track down the proper torque specs for the intake as that's basically the only difference.

 

Snowdrift, maybe I'll see you around this summer. I'm married with a kid so I don't hang around at the brobell much, but I may stop by occasionally. I will go to some cars and coffee events too.

 

Guy at UHP told me to get sleeves if I'm going over 450. I don't plan on going that high anytime soon though. I do have my eye on a td06-20g, but that'll wait next winter. When I kill this motor I'll build one. I have a spare block that I may send to the shop and get cleaned up then build myself a built bottom end. Jist because.

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yeah, I'm married with two kids so I never go to that stuff. That and I've recently relocated from Wasilla to Fairbanks. and definitely want either closed deck or sleeves for over 450 lol. I was running a holset hx35 at 25psi when mine went :(! it was only tuned for 21psi but this one day I was going up hatcher pass it started hitting 25psi and my dumb@$$ was like "oh this is NICE!" and that's all she wrote lol new engine in the works however just taking time with the slow available funds rolling in...
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Thanks Max!

 

Got the old one out today. everything went smoothly but i forgot the brake booster hose which complicated things and hopefully nothing is damaged.

 

Intake ports are dyed blue due to the water methanol washer fluid i'm running. looks pretty cool IMO.

 

I did order a new oil pan and clutch. was hoping i could get away without a new clutch but no, mine's old. I tried cleaning the pan but it proved to be more work than the $50 for a new one. RockAuto is amazing. They even ship to alaska incredibly fast with reasonable shipping prices. Amazon will take upwards 10 days to ship something whereas rockauto will get parts to my door in 2 days.

 

I believe I have anything except the Air Fuel sensor for the exhaust manifold. Required as i'm certain this is what lead to the demise of this engine.

 

I'll have a price breakdown here shortly. It was expensive, but not all that bad. Damned oil components raised the price up quite a bit. Note to self, replace the engine BEFORE it spins a bearing.

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There is only one or may be two front O2 sensors we recommend. Check JmP's sticky at the top of the 4th Gen forum for the correct Denzo O2 sensor.

 

Wait a minute I think I have it written down in my pocket note book for the car...yep, Denzo, 234-9120

305,600miles 5/2012 ej257 short block, 8/2011 installed VF52 turbo, @20.8psi, 280whp, 300ftlbs. (SOLD).  CHECK your oil, these cars use it.

 

Engine Build - Click Here

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