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Turbo oil leak - suggestions?

I have a problem I can't figure.
The turbo is a newly built HF 3LDZ. I used it once on a track meeting over a weekend. Then it began spewing oil and when sitting left a puddle of oil. Sent back to supplier, and now re-installed the rebuilt item back in car. Supplier suggested some easy road miles to run it in first. I did about 30 miles on it, max boost 0.2 bar. After a day or so, this is under the turbo .
I have not had this issue with the other 3LDZs I have been running. While waiting for the HF to be repaired I bolted on a 2nd hand 3LDZ that had been sitting in a box as a spare for 2-3 yrs. Had 3 days racing with it and no issues.
I don't know anything about turbo internals.
What are the likely causes of this problem?
Wondering if the turbo needs pulling down, again. Or is it possible the issue is somewhere else?
Thanks
Alan

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83 SC, 82 930 (track) - Stock except for RarlyL8 race headers, RarlyL8 Zork, K27-7006, 22/28 T bars, 007 Fuel head, short 3&4 gears, NGK AFR, Greddy EBC (on the slippery slope), Wevo engine mounts, ERP rear camber adjust and mono balls, Tarret front monoball camber adjust, Elgin cams, 38mm ported heads, 964 IC. 380rwhp @ 0.8bar Apart from above, bone stock:-)
Old 04-03-2012, 04:02 PM
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I had a similar experience with a hybrid turbo about four years ago . . . based upon many conversations with other board members that have had like experiences the conclusion is that the turbo builder(s) are ****** up along the way (and are too pridefull to admit it) . . . one likely problem is the new assembly is not being balanced properly and the imballance is causing bearing and seal problems.
Old 04-03-2012, 04:38 PM
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I don't know what they did to it when I sent it back, or what the conclusion was as to the issue. They said this time, since I use it only for racing, they will take extra care in the balancing. I have only run the car at 2-3000 rpm since fitting this one.
How do the seals work? any idea? I figure there must be seals in there somewhere and you would have to think they may be the suspects. Prior to purchasing this turbo I was running a stock 3LDZ that got so worn the blades were in danger of scraping the housing. But it still never leaked. It would seem logical that it must be a seal issue? Reluctant to start doing anything with it until I know the turbo is the problem, but I can't think of any other candidates really.
Thanks
Alan
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83 SC, 82 930 (track) - Stock except for RarlyL8 race headers, RarlyL8 Zork, K27-7006, 22/28 T bars, 007 Fuel head, short 3&4 gears, NGK AFR, Greddy EBC (on the slippery slope), Wevo engine mounts, ERP rear camber adjust and mono balls, Tarret front monoball camber adjust, Elgin cams, 38mm ported heads, 964 IC. 380rwhp @ 0.8bar Apart from above, bone stock:-)
Old 04-03-2012, 04:57 PM
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I do not know enough about the workings of the seals to explain in an educated manner (though I have seen pics and drawings of the assemblies), but JFairman is an expert on this subject (as are several others that post here - like CopBait). He is also one that I exchanged IMs with regarding my turbo problem. Hopefully he will see this thread.
Old 04-03-2012, 05:06 PM
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Alan,

Something to check would be the scavenge pump and see if
there is a restrictor ball is in the banjo for the oil feed line.
The turbo could be getting too much oil and pushing past the
seals or the scavenging pump may not be evacuating properly
and allowing the oil to back up in the turbo.


Cole
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Old 04-03-2012, 05:19 PM
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Hi Cole, I got the ball. Checked long ago. Also, the oil leaks out while the car is sitting, which would be weird? I renewed the pin drive on the scavenge pump a few months ago when I had the engine out, altho I have not checked the flows - but til now, with the other turbos I have had on the engine, there has never been such an issue. So I'm assuming the flows/scavenge are OK - considering the other turbos were working flat out near full time, and still no oil leaks.
Alan
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83 SC, 82 930 (track) - Stock except for RarlyL8 race headers, RarlyL8 Zork, K27-7006, 22/28 T bars, 007 Fuel head, short 3&4 gears, NGK AFR, Greddy EBC (on the slippery slope), Wevo engine mounts, ERP rear camber adjust and mono balls, Tarret front monoball camber adjust, Elgin cams, 38mm ported heads, 964 IC. 380rwhp @ 0.8bar Apart from above, bone stock:-)
Old 04-03-2012, 05:25 PM
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OK, many thanks. The problem is I have to run a 3LDZ for the class I am racing in - the car came with a 3LDZ from factory, so I have to use a 3LDZ. This is as close as I could get to upping its performance to something like a K27.
Now I have to decide whether to post it back to the US and spend more money on it, or ditch it and go back to my used 3LDZ.
I don't think this was made in a basement, it came via a turbo shop via the Pelican board. But it does sound like I have an issue with the internals of it.
Ronnie, did you ever get an answer to your problem?
thanks
Alan
Regards
Alan
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83 SC, 82 930 (track) - Stock except for RarlyL8 race headers, RarlyL8 Zork, K27-7006, 22/28 T bars, 007 Fuel head, short 3&4 gears, NGK AFR, Greddy EBC (on the slippery slope), Wevo engine mounts, ERP rear camber adjust and mono balls, Tarret front monoball camber adjust, Elgin cams, 38mm ported heads, 964 IC. 380rwhp @ 0.8bar Apart from above, bone stock:-)
Old 04-03-2012, 06:33 PM
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Well thats a good reason. I didn't think of anything like that.
Anyway, I'd call Durbilt and discuss everything with them.
I think they sometimes put K29 compressor wheels into K27's and maybe they do something like that with a 3ldz.
They will rebuild it as good or better than anyone else in the USA. More professional race teams use Durabilt than anywhere else here.
http://www.durabilt-turbo.com/
Old 04-03-2012, 06:50 PM
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Alan, if your spare 3LDZ is working then look no further as the 3LDZm is the problem. With world trade being what it is today there is no way to know for certain where parts are coming from. I received a part today from Porsche that was clearly marked "made in China". Pissed does not begin to describe how I felt about that, especially for the Porsche price. My belief after seeing that is the rebuild kits for the 3LDZ have suffered the same fait. Keep the core and contact me off line. I'll make it right.
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Old 04-03-2012, 07:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alan L View Post
Ronnie, did you ever get an answer to your problem?
thanks
Alan
Regards
Alan
Alan, it was resolved at the time, but I have no faith in the turbo and assume it will have a short life . . .

My first unit lasted all of 10 minutes before it started blowing oil (I **** you not)! I sent it back for repairs, and the builder blamed me, of course, saying that oil contaminates scored the bearings (no way no how) and I was charged several hundred dollars for the repair (and my turbo was gone for two months). It was at this time that I got into conversations with others on this board that had like-experiences in the past with these turbos. On a possitive note, the turbo performs very well. When it fails, I will either send it to Durabilt or go the Garrett route.

I want to add something here; if your turbo was built by the same builder/shop that makes the other "Hy Flow" variants, then this problem is nothing new or isolated. I have been in contact with 5-7 individuals that had the same experience (some sent their turbos back multiple time only to have the failure repeated). I can only speculate at to why the problem continues . . .

BTW: Brian (RarlyL8) had nothing to do with my turbo . . .

Last edited by Ronnie's.930; 04-04-2012 at 04:39 AM..
Old 04-04-2012, 04:13 AM
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Part of the rebuild process includes inspection of the core parts that are being reused in the assembly. There is no way that you should be getting back a rebuilt unit that fails so quickly provided you dont do anything to harm it when you are running it.
Anything else is BS.
I have had my newly purschased k27S for 5 years now and no problems. It works fine and does not show evidence of leaking oil past the exhaust side and doesnt smoke thru the intake either.
I have been tracking it in DE days for the last 4 years now and have put 20k total miles on it so far, knock on wood.
At least I can serve as a positive datapoint for the k27 but it sux to have gone thru what you did all the same.
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Old 04-04-2012, 08:14 AM
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[QUOTE=I have had my newly purschased k27S for 5 years now and no problems. It works fine and does not show evidence of leaking oil past the exhaust side and doesnt smoke thru the intake either.
I have been tracking it in DE days for the last 4 years now and have put 20k total miles on it so far, knock on wood.
At least I can serve as a positive datapoint for the k27 but it sux to have gone thru what you did all the same.[/QUOTE]

Your K27S is not really a hybrid turbo. It uses a stock origonal K27 7200 turbine housing, turbine wheel and shaft, bearing housing, and compressor wheel that were assembled together and high speed balanced as a cartridge by 3K Borg Warner at their factory.
The only difference is the K27S uses an aftermarket compressor housing that has a 3" hose inlet tapering down to the stock K27 7200 compressor wheel inducer instead of the origonal K27 compressor housing with it's 2.75" hose inlet.

The K27S is reliable because it's still a stock K27 7200 turbo under that aftermarket compressor cover and if it was made from a new K27 7200 and not walnut shell blasted used parts that look just like new on the outside then none of the moving parts have been touched or changed since it left the KKK factory.
You could remove that aftermarket compresoor cover and put a stock K27 cover back on and it would be exactly the same as a stock K27 7200.

There is such thing as "zero clearance" in a journal bearing turbo because the inner and outer diameter oil clearances in the two shaft bearings which are really more of a bushing than a bearing do not allow that. There has to be enough oil clearance to allow the journal bearings to float or swim in the oil flowing through the bearing housing so they can rotate at approximately half shaft speed and never make metal to metal contact to the stationary cast iron bearing housing on the outer diameter, or the exteme high speed steel turbine shaft in the inner diameter. Those oil clearances create some lateral side play of the shaft, turbine, and compressor wheels so the phrase zero clearance is just marketing.

The HFS is a stock K27 7200 with a big oversize overweight Holset compressor wheel and an aftermarket compressor housing made to fit over it. Thats where the term hybrid comes in.
There are various reasons why they fail quickly over and over from not being high speed VSR balanced to poorly modified K27 7200 backlates to fit the bigger Holset compressor wheel exducer and they only have a 270 degree thrust bearing inside.
When Durabilt rebuilds these HFS hybrids, and they've rebuilt alot of them now.. they install a 360 degree thrust bearing that is more durable and is an upgrade.

And the HFS runs alot hotter than a regular K27 under boost because the backpressure between the combustion chambers and the turbine wheel housing is so high. The old design K27 7200 turbine wheel and turbine housing can not flow enough exhaust gas to keep that from happening when an oversize holset compressor wheel is forcing more air into the combustion chambers that a stock K27 7200 compressor wheel at the same time.
That also causes a richer mixture and the unburned gas in the exhaust can cause secondary combustion at the turbine wheel during high boost. That causes extreme heat and burns up the oil around the journal bearing creating carbonized oil coke in the turbine side of the bearing housing and then the hot side journal bearing is cooked and destoyed and you've got a smoking blown turbo.

I've been through the repetitve expensive rebuilds of an HFS that never lasted longer than 900 miles of easy driving with an occasional blast through first and second gear up an I-95 entrance ramp. I've got around $2700 into an HFS turbo that sits in a box, while my second hand K27 7006 works perfect all the time.
I have 3-4 year old emails from around 5 or 6 different people that had the same awful experience with the HFS and were always told it was their fault by the guy that makes them... thats total BS.

If you want to upgrade your turbo forget about any K27 and go with a Garret GT35R that is a ball bearing turbo or the Garret hybrid called "Blowzilla" that is a journal bearing turbo. Either of them will make wayyyyyy more power than any K27 hybrid and they are very reliable from everything I've heard. A new Blowzilla even costs ALOT less than a new HFS.
Old 04-04-2012, 09:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ronnie's.930 View Post
Alan, it was resolved at the time, but I have no faith in the turbo and assume it will have a short life . . .

My first unit lasted all of 10 minutes before it started blowing oil (I **** you not)! I sent it back for repairs, and the builder blamed me, of course, saying that oil contaminates scored the bearings (no way no how) and I was charged several hundred dollars for the repair (and my turbo was gone for two months). It was at this time that I got into conversations with others on this board that had like-experiences in the past with these turbos. On a possitive note, the turbo performs very well. When it fails, I will either send it to Durabilt or go the Garrett route.

I want to add something here; if your turbo was built by the same builder/shop that makes the other "Hy Flow" variants, then this problem is nothing new or isolated. I have been in contact with 5-7 individuals that had the same experience (some sent their turbos back multiple time only to have the failure repeated). I can only speculate at to why the problem continues . . .

BTW: Brian (RarlyL8) had nothing to do with my turbo . . .
Thanks Ronnie - sounds like I am following in others footsteps. I was told this one had some foreign particulate in the oil intake tract when I sent it back - I had only taken it out of their box and bolted it on, same as I had bolted turbos on the beast numerous times before - and I did prime it with oil at the time.
This time I even blew the oil tract out with compressed air at the install, just in case.
BTW, Brian really had nothing to do with this one either, but his compelling sense of 'right' seems to make him want to take on the burden. I don't hold him responsible in any way.
Regards
Alan
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83 SC, 82 930 (track) - Stock except for RarlyL8 race headers, RarlyL8 Zork, K27-7006, 22/28 T bars, 007 Fuel head, short 3&4 gears, NGK AFR, Greddy EBC (on the slippery slope), Wevo engine mounts, ERP rear camber adjust and mono balls, Tarret front monoball camber adjust, Elgin cams, 38mm ported heads, 964 IC. 380rwhp @ 0.8bar Apart from above, bone stock:-)
Old 04-04-2012, 11:06 AM
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Excellent post JFairman. Thanks. By HFS are you referring to my HF 3LDZ?
I was going to take this info to my turbo guy and have him take a look inside the unit.
Thanks
Alan
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83 SC, 82 930 (track) - Stock except for RarlyL8 race headers, RarlyL8 Zork, K27-7006, 22/28 T bars, 007 Fuel head, short 3&4 gears, NGK AFR, Greddy EBC (on the slippery slope), Wevo engine mounts, ERP rear camber adjust and mono balls, Tarret front monoball camber adjust, Elgin cams, 38mm ported heads, 964 IC. 380rwhp @ 0.8bar Apart from above, bone stock:-)
Old 04-04-2012, 11:51 AM
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The HFS is a K27 hybrid. HF is for high flow, I guess the S is for sport... or smoke.

I don't know if your 3ldzHF was made by the same place..
Old 04-04-2012, 12:36 PM
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Sorry to hear of your experience, however I'm not surprised. In the past JFairman has provided excellent summaries of the issues and he has done it again on this thread.

I'll only add that given the pattern of failures I'd lean toward bearing system overload. You can precision balance rotors but if you overload them with massive compressor (or turbine) wheels they will still become unstable and fail. This is the reason why KKK/Borg Warner and Garrett/Honeywell don't randomly slap over-sized wheels on their performance turbos.

There is a possible fix for your class legal 3LDZ. The 3LD is a very old Schwizter design from the mid to late 60s. Schwitzer licensed manufacture of the 3LD turbo to KKK. KKK then modified the bearing and several non critical components and called it their 3LDZ. From what I know of both bearings the Schwitzer bearing was less sophisticated but more robust and the parts are/were interchangeable. Yes, a critical German component like the turbocharger is not metric throughout. Additional background, some Holset parts are interchangeable because they started out making Schwitzer designs also.

Also, turbochargers love synthetic oil and do not need break in. The first time they go to rated RPM things are either OK......or not.

Last edited by copbait73; 04-04-2012 at 05:24 PM..
Old 04-04-2012, 05:19 PM
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Excellent, thanks. I will pass this on to my Turbo guy - who has just received the Turbo. he deduced it was a Schwitzer also. Next week I should get his verdict. The bearings can't be up to much if they fail when not even under any duress/load, if that is what has happened. I never got a verdict back from the first failure. I am hoping this time to get something concrete.
Thanks
Alan
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83 SC, 82 930 (track) - Stock except for RarlyL8 race headers, RarlyL8 Zork, K27-7006, 22/28 T bars, 007 Fuel head, short 3&4 gears, NGK AFR, Greddy EBC (on the slippery slope), Wevo engine mounts, ERP rear camber adjust and mono balls, Tarret front monoball camber adjust, Elgin cams, 38mm ported heads, 964 IC. 380rwhp @ 0.8bar Apart from above, bone stock:-)
Old 04-04-2012, 07:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Alan L View Post
Excellent post JFairman. Thanks. By HFS are you referring to my HF 3LDZ?
I was going to take this info to my turbo guy and have him take a look inside the unit.
Thanks
Alan
Yes thanks for the explanation Jim. I had never gotten this detailed explanation of the differences from the turbo builders......even when asking. I can see why now. I thought I was getting something radically redesigned when they marketted the k27S when I bought it.
However, I am still happy with it and it performs well for my engine so far. It makes boost very early and the car is very linear to drive, and I have not noticed running out of air with it even up around 6000rpm in 3rd gear. I typically don't wind it up much past this engine rpm but might try it now to see what happens.
I will tell you the main driving force for me to go with KKK at the time was the ease of installation/interchangeablility to the existing OEM hardware. Plus KKK is a good name in turbos and I expected the same design and quality/reliability when buying my k27S. Since then Garret has relaesed some more advanced turbos that might perform better in our 930s...thats a good thing for guys buying now.

Fred
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Last edited by fredmeister; 04-05-2012 at 08:10 AM..
Old 04-05-2012, 08:03 AM
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OK, I should post an update. I hate threads that just end with no conclusion of sucess or otherwise. Took it to my turbo guy who stripped it down. The parts were genuine, and he could not find anything obviously wrong. however, I had told him to be looking for anything that would cause an oil issue, so he paid close attention. He reassembled it slightly differently with regard to the oil rings/seals. Meantime, I have done tests on the oil pressure in the turbo line, both my guy and the supplier wnated to know if any residual pressure in line after shut down. I teed a guage off the idot switch fitting. No residual pressure. I checked my scavenge pump rates, no oil build up - pump running ahead of delivery - at least at idle revs.
Hooked everything back together and ran the engine til warm. Left Zork off so I can detect any oil in turbo housing. 2 days later, nothing. I guess track time next month will tell, but it seems OK now. Touch wood.
Alan
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83 SC, 82 930 (track) - Stock except for RarlyL8 race headers, RarlyL8 Zork, K27-7006, 22/28 T bars, 007 Fuel head, short 3&4 gears, NGK AFR, Greddy EBC (on the slippery slope), Wevo engine mounts, ERP rear camber adjust and mono balls, Tarret front monoball camber adjust, Elgin cams, 38mm ported heads, 964 IC. 380rwhp @ 0.8bar Apart from above, bone stock:-)
Old 04-17-2012, 01:22 PM
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Another thing that can cause oil to leak past the compressor side piston ring oil seal is using too small an air filter that restricts intake air flow.
There's some folks here that refuse to believe that and continue to promote these stoopid little 2" tall paper air filter elements that look like they belong on a lawn mower.

Running too small and or a dirty air filter element will make the turbo compressor wheel overspin and suck air harder than it should to draw in air creating a low pressure area/partial vacuum behind the compressor wheel on the thrust bearing and oil seal behind it and that will cause the compressor wheel to eventually suck oil past the piston ring oil seal on the compressor side.
Once that happens the oil seal is breached and it may continue to leak oil even if a larger free flow air filter is installed.

Looks like yours had oil leaking past the turbine side piston ring oil seals though so that won't apply to yours.

Old 04-17-2012, 01:49 PM
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