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#1 2011-08-01 10:02:11

ahaidet
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From: Akron, OH
Registered: 2008-04-14
User Number: 2697
Posts: 54

Track Days and Spun Bearing

I have owned my 2005 92x Aero for little over 3 years now.  Its Stage 2 with the 91 Octane Cobb map and for the most part had been pretty reliable.  I did my first track day last fall with it but it rained most of the day I still did about 25 laps and enjoyed it.  I went to my second track day a week or so ago.  I got 10 laps in and my day ended horribly... as the title of this thread indicates I got what I am fairly certain is a nasty rod knock. My car just turned over 90,000 miles. I regularly did oil changes every 4-5000miles with full synthetic (typically Pennzoil 5W-30.)  I checked my oil regularly and occasionally found it on the low side of the dipstick but never below.  The night before the track day I changed the oil with fresh 5W-30 Pennzoil, flushed the cooling system with Subaru OEM Coolant and bled the brakes. I am going to start tearing into it tonight to begin assessing the damage. 

Reading the internet searching for information regarding Subaru rod bearings I am a little bummed out as to the prevalence of this problem. I've read many potential causes:
1)factory rod bearing clearances on tight side for typical performance engine
2)2.0L Oil pan does not have good enough baffles for track use
3)Oil quality
4)Oil pick up failure (uncommon on 2.0 but possible?)
5)negligence on my part of letting oil get to lower half of dipstick (then attacking on ramps like there was a prize for highest G turn) The car was right at Full for track day so at least then low oil volume was not a problem.



My initial thought was to do a Hybrid EJ205/EJ257 swap, I would love the extra torque and the cost of buying a 2.0L short block is not significantly different from a 2.5L.  I know that I would be opening a new bag of worms with the 2.5L piston issues and would consider installing forged pistons from the start. My power goals are not particularly high.  I was happy at Stage 2 but wouldn’t have minded some extra torque.  I could see myself maybe swapping in a 16 or 20G sized turbo and trying to get around 300ish power wise down the road.


I love my car... I like the fact that I can use it in winter snow storms, to haul things, to pull a small utility trailer, to go to autocross, to go to the track, on trips and to get myself to work every morning in a generally fun to drive car. 

Now I am not sure I can trust it to do track days or autocross.  Have others done track days in there cars without problems? I understand autocross is significantly lower stress than track days as heat and G-loads are longer and higher (so maybe auto-x is fine). Was I just unlucky and that if I install a quality rebuild I can look forward to another 90K+miles trouble free?

Another idea floating around my head right now involves selling the 92x after the rebuild and buying a used 4WD truck and selling my other cars and buying a better track toy... (all used* (350Z, Boxster, 3-Series... etc) Just not sure I want to daily drive a truck (hate sitting so high).


Interested in thoughts? tips? suggestions? On anything mentioned here. How to rebuild it better, what to replace it with etc....

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#2 2011-08-01 11:30:55

kornfeld
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From: San Francisco
Registered: 2008-01-22
User Number: 2503
Posts: 9346

Re: Track Days and Spun Bearing

Damn, sorry to hear that.  sad  Unfortunately, you aren't alone in this...there have been what I would say is an alarming number of these in the last year or so.  Here are a few threads that will probably be of interest to you:

http://saab92x.com/viewtopic.php?id=34462

http://saab92x.com/viewtopic.php?id=35566

http://saab92x.com/viewtopic.php?id=28659

Search around, there are more threads like those.  Keep us posted on what you do.  embeer


Blue '05 Aero MT
.
.

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#3 2011-08-01 12:23:17

Augie
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Registered: 2009-01-02
User Number: 3426
Posts: 1695

Re: Track Days and Spun Bearing

ahaidet wrote:

1)factory rod bearing clearances on tight side for typical performance engine

According to my Engine Builder and My own inspection of the Mechanical Diagrams for the Engine and Spec Sheets this isnt the case.

Rather it is that the Tolerances are fairly large and for 99.98% of the cars sold this isnt in issue.

Think of it this way 3 of the four rod bearings are on the loose side of spec and one is on the tight side. The one on the tight side is already getting less oil flow on a normal basis, and then you add something that reduces flow further(low oil, Low Pressure, tracking,...whatever) and that bearing on the tight side heats up and goes pop.

The key is to keep everything uniform. To that end my engine builder bought undersized bearings and then when everything was set, measured all of the clearances and had each bearing individually coated to keep uniform clearance. Im trying to remember what they ended up at but they were all within 1 thousandth of each other(not the clearance but the tolerance between the clearance) when all was said and done, and I know that they didnt start that close. I believe the Journals on the crank differed by 5 thousandths in some cases.


05' Saab 92x Aero OBP Standard Stage 2
Yes, some mod messed with my profile and Im cranky because of the passive aggressive nature of this

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#4 2011-08-01 13:30:21

ahaidet
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From: Akron, OH
Registered: 2008-04-14
User Number: 2697
Posts: 54

Re: Track Days and Spun Bearing

I havent found it yet for the 2.0 motor but this is for the 2.5 motor:

http://www.eaa.org/experimenter/article … lsions.asp

From that link:
"Subaru-specified clearance of 0.0018 inches is a little on the tight side, and 0.0007"

So if your builder got them within a 0.001" then they are barely within the factory window.  I would hope he got them closer than that.

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#5 2011-08-01 16:24:51

saabarupp
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From: Pittsburgh, PA
Registered: 2008-09-04
User Number: 3153
Posts: 1481

Re: Track Days and Spun Bearing

Honestly, you should not run a 30 weight oil in these cars if you are going to push it real hard.  Some say not to run 30wt ever.  I use GC, but i am not sure i would if I were going to the track.

Have you thought about a stroker engine?  I am curious about these and would love to hear people's thoughts on them.


2007 WRX Sti Limited 413/800
Former 9-2X Aero owner.....RIP Ruby :'-(

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#6 2011-08-02 01:08:30

theleveler
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From: Diamond Bar, CA
Registered: 2009-06-08
User Number: 3752
Posts: 1065

Re: Track Days and Spun Bearing

Gawwww another one sad

Sorry to hear that...   Worth rebuilding IMO big_smile

Do the R&r yourself and use the money you save for fantastic internals!


TITTYWOP

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#7 2011-08-02 02:15:06

Augie
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Registered: 2009-01-02
User Number: 3426
Posts: 1695

Re: Track Days and Spun Bearing

ahaidet wrote:

I havent found it yet for the 2.0 motor but this is for the 2.5 motor:

http://www.eaa.org/experimenter/article … lsions.asp

From that link:
"Subaru-specified clearance of 0.0018 inches is a little on the tight side, and 0.0007"

So if your builder got them within a 0.001" then they are barely within the factory window.  I would hope he got them closer than that.

your right looked at my build sheet again all measured 0.0014 or .0015 so I thould have said  "one tenth", meaning "one tenth of a thou"

my mistake. Not being a machinist this isnt in my everyday vocab


05' Saab 92x Aero OBP Standard Stage 2
Yes, some mod messed with my profile and Im cranky because of the passive aggressive nature of this

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#8 2011-08-02 02:41:25

hammyt
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From: Chicago, IL
Registered: 2005-07-18
User Number: 562
Posts: 11384

Re: Track Days and Spun Bearing

saabarupp wrote:

Honestly, you should not run a 30 weight oil in these cars if you are going to push it real hard.  Some say not to run 30wt ever.

I have to agree, sorry for your troubles.


2005 Saab 9-2x Aero 5MT
Parchment Metallic
Lots of dents.

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#9 2011-08-02 08:42:25

Superchunk
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Registered: 2009-07-26
User Number: 3866
Posts: 539

Re: Track Days and Spun Bearing

What oil should be used?  What would be the ideal all-around, safest weight?

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#10 2011-08-02 10:09:35

ixiz
will drive U crazy...
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From: Atlanta, GA
Registered: 2005-11-05
User Number: 886
Posts: 5617
Website

Re: Track Days and Spun Bearing

shell T6


05' Black Aero 92x     MY mods
IxizConcept  --  Ixiz performance components designed specifically for 92x / Subaru's  facebook=ixizconcept

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#11 2011-08-02 13:22:00

saabarupp
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From: Pittsburgh, PA
Registered: 2008-09-04
User Number: 3153
Posts: 1481

Re: Track Days and Spun Bearing

GC (german castrol 0w 30, trust me it's thick enough) is good for normal daily use.  I would go with a 40wt for stage 2 track use, and 50wt for crazy, zomg modded car tack days.


2007 WRX Sti Limited 413/800
Former 9-2X Aero owner.....RIP Ruby :'-(

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#12 2011-08-02 14:45:12

theleveler
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From: Diamond Bar, CA
Registered: 2009-06-08
User Number: 3752
Posts: 1065

Re: Track Days and Spun Bearing

saabarupp wrote:

GC (german castrol 0w 30, trust me it's thick enough) is good for normal daily use.  I would go with a 40wt for stage 2 track use, and 50wt for crazy, zomg modded car tack days.

http://i67.photobucket.com/albums/h320/theleveler/2z66ruf.gif


TITTYWOP

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#13 2011-08-02 15:09:39

hammyt
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From: Chicago, IL
Registered: 2005-07-18
User Number: 562
Posts: 11384

Re: Track Days and Spun Bearing

I used to run Shell T6, now I run Motul 5w40.  I would recommend either.


2005 Saab 9-2x Aero 5MT
Parchment Metallic
Lots of dents.

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#14 2011-08-02 17:22:05

theleveler
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From: Diamond Bar, CA
Registered: 2009-06-08
User Number: 3752
Posts: 1065

Re: Track Days and Spun Bearing

Any reliably downsides to running the thicker oil for daily use?  I'm guessing gas mileage would take a hit, but who cares.


TITTYWOP

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#15 2011-08-02 17:25:12

hammyt
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From: Chicago, IL
Registered: 2005-07-18
User Number: 562
Posts: 11384

Re: Track Days and Spun Bearing

That's really tough to say.  I mean even with the thicker oil my car has been fine for >2 Years and about ~30k miles @ 20 pounds of boost and before that stage 2 for forever, now at 95k.  But I guess I could spin a rod bearing tomorrow, so like I said it is really tough to say.

And that's three years of street parked and cold-started winters in Chicago with that thicker oil too.


2005 Saab 9-2x Aero 5MT
Parchment Metallic
Lots of dents.

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#16 2011-08-03 16:09:05

saabarupp
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From: Pittsburgh, PA
Registered: 2008-09-04
User Number: 3153
Posts: 1481

Re: Track Days and Spun Bearing

I think GC (0w 30) presents no concerns for daily use year round.  It's a very thick 30wt with excellent shear resistance.  Most subaru owners experience little to no consumption issues. 

I probably would probably temporarily switch to a heavier oil on track days.


2007 WRX Sti Limited 413/800
Former 9-2X Aero owner.....RIP Ruby :'-(

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#17 2011-08-05 15:49:02

ahaidet
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From: Akron, OH
Registered: 2008-04-14
User Number: 2697
Posts: 54

Re: Track Days and Spun Bearing

I got the motor out last night.  Will disect it this weekend to see how comprehensive the damage is and look for causes.  Will report back with details.

https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-QLg19jnudnQ/TjxF-yPWkgI/AAAAAAAABDM/RjqqXVihvU4/s640/IMG_20110804_235115.jpg

https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-QEhuHidhVt0/TjxFdq6MEzI/AAAAAAAABDE/ybbnwi2QLJA/s640/IMG_20110804_235219.jpg

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#18 2011-08-05 15:56:23

tlow98
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From: Chicago
Registered: 2010-08-15
User Number: 4765
Posts: 5102

Re: Track Days and Spun Bearing

good jorb!


05 MT, cold, sport...black

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#19 2011-08-05 15:59:37

Mrmulletmania
Right Wing Nut
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From: Orange, CA
Registered: 2009-11-18
User Number: 4095
Posts: 2239

Re: Track Days and Spun Bearing

That was fast up


05 Aero MT|Arctic Silver|IxizHood|IxizSS V2|Cobb DP|PDE|GFB|Prodrive Oval|EPIC RSB|Cobb FSB|MOMO|Jazzy|GrimmSpeed|IxizSpedal|
"I think I accidentally defeated Bill Gates." -Someguy
"Like I always say: If you can catch it, you can fuck it." Kap_x

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#20 2011-08-22 15:11:23

ahaidet
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From: Akron, OH
Registered: 2008-04-14
User Number: 2697
Posts: 54

Re: Track Days and Spun Bearing

Well I took the block and heads to the machine shop a little over a week ago. From what they have looked at so far everything looks good and can be brought into spec.  Obviously the crank is fubared so I will order a new OEM crank along with a lot of other parts:


1)Crank
2)Rods
3)Pistons, Rings and pins
4)Bearings
5)Oil Pump
6)Oil Cooler
7)Gasket Set
8)Water Pump
9)Timing belt kit
10)Oil Pan (Maybe EJ257 pan) I hear it has better baffles.  If I do this i know I need a new dipstick and pickup.
11)Head bolts/Studs
12) Some random bolts that got broken or had to be drilled out (cam gears)


Some of those parts are easy to get/find.  The bolts on the other hand are a little trickier.  For DSMs I have Mitsubishi's dealer parts lookup software.  It makes ordering parts from the dealer a simple ordeal with way less fighting with parts jockeys  (here is the part number... give me my part).  Does this software exist outside of Subaru/Saab dealers? I found a link by searching (http://opposedforces.com/parts/impreza/us_g11/)  but its giving me an error when I try to follow it?

Where do you guys recommend ordering OEM parts from.  Also with DSMs there is a decently priced dealer based out of Maryland that I used to order parts from and get them faster and cheaper than the local dealers.  I looked at Fred Beans site but they doesn’t list OEM pistons or even the EJ20 Crank just the EJ25 stuff.

Finally I am more than a little concerned with the turbo in my car.  When I try and spin the compressor wheel by hand... it spins but it stops immediately after my finger leaves it.  On other turbos I have spun they have less resistance and feel much freer... I am particularly concerned that my turbo got gunked up with bearing crud and is done for as well.  I am considering a VF34 swap but I can't find a new VF34 anywhere reputable (just ebay).  I think an EVO3 16G is pretty comparable but have not had much luck finding one of those either just regular 16G and Blouch XT16G?  I am not looking to make 350+ hp I was pretty happy with my car at Stage 2,  But I think my turbo is a liability at this point and figure I might as well do a minor upgrade if I have to replace it.  I just dont want much more lag.


Enjoy some Pics of the motor torn apart:

https://picasaweb.google.com/1024307627 … fOA0t3sXA#

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#21 2011-08-23 01:29:21

ahaidet
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From: Akron, OH
Registered: 2008-04-14
User Number: 2697
Posts: 54

Re: Track Days and Spun Bearing

The parts link works at home.  Just not at work or my Droid.  Hmm oh well. Not quiet as easy to use as Mitsubishi WinCAPs but will do.

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#22 2011-08-23 10:31:12

mcalistr
Member
From: Halifax, NS
Registered: 2011-04-29
User Number: 5437
Posts: 122

Re: Track Days and Spun Bearing

ahaidet wrote:

Finally I am more than a little concerned with the turbo in my car.  When I try and spin the compressor wheel by hand... it spins but it stops immediately after my finger leaves it.  On other turbos I have spun they have less resistance and feel much freer... I am particularly concerned that my turbo got gunked up with bearing crud and is done for as well.  I am considering a VF34 swap but I can't find a new VF34 anywhere reputable (just ebay).  I think an EVO3 16G is pretty comparable but have not had much luck finding one of those either just regular 16G and Blouch XT16G?  I am not looking to make 350+ hp I was pretty happy with my car at Stage 2,  But I think my turbo is a liability at this point and figure I might as well do a minor upgrade if I have to replace it.  I just dont want much more lag.


https://picasaweb.google.com/1024307627 … fOA0t3sXA#

In my past experiences, I would either get a new one or rebuild it.  The turbo should be spinning smoother than that- it shouldn't move alot after you release it, but at least some (mind you most of my experience comes from smaller motorcycle turbos).  Does it make a noise while you slowly spin it, or have resistance at a certain spot?


2005 Black Aero, Fully Loaded, Stage 1, interior mods, 4EAT
2010 Kia Forte Koup SX
1999 Triumph Daytona 955i

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#23 2011-08-23 11:27:45

kornfeld
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From: San Francisco
Registered: 2008-01-22
User Number: 2503
Posts: 9346

Re: Track Days and Spun Bearing

Any turbo upgrade will require new injectors, fuel pump, and tune.  If you want a bump in power, this will get you there.

If you were happy with stage 2, and aren't looking for a bump in power, just get a used TD04 from craigslist, nasioc, or maybe here.


Blue '05 Aero MT
.
.

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#24 2011-08-23 12:30:27

ahaidet
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From: Akron, OH
Registered: 2008-04-14
User Number: 2697
Posts: 54

Re: Track Days and Spun Bearing

kornfeld wrote:

Any turbo upgrade will require new injectors, fuel pump, and tune.  If you want a bump in power, this will get you there.

If you were happy with stage 2, and aren't looking for a bump in power, just get a used TD04 from craigslist, nasioc, or maybe here.

Yeah I realized this.   

I have a phobia of used turbos... it might be irrational but I am concerned its going to wipe my motor out again because some ass hat sold me one off his toasted motor and its going to plug up the oil passages, etc.

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#25 2011-09-29 14:50:10

ahaidet
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From: Akron, OH
Registered: 2008-04-14
User Number: 2697
Posts: 54

Re: Track Days and Spun Bearing

I am in the process of reassembling my motor.  Everything is going well.  This isnt my first motor rebuild... so that helps.. but is my first Subaru motor. One thing I ran across was talk about oil restrictors in the head getting clogged up with bearing gunk after a bearing spins.  The machine shop degreased/hot tanked my head.  The head looks clean but I spent some more time blowing out the oil passages and cleaning them out more throughly.  The driver side head felt good when blowing compresed air through it (no clogs and clean air)  When I blow through the passanger side head it feels like there could be some resistance there to flow.   Does anyone on here know how to remove/clean the oil restrictors. I am not even sure where they are.  I think I found an allen head set screw that may be hiding them but they were REALLY tight.


Check out some more Pictures of the build

https://picasaweb.google.com/1024307627 … fOA0t3sXA#

Last edited by ahaidet (2011-09-29 14:53:15)

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