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I need to replace my LN upgraded IMS Bearing

Does anyone know if there's a source for the Ceramic Hybrid IMS bearing other than LN?

First let me clarify, I'm all for supporting the sponsors, and definitely for paying people for their R&D efforts. Which is why we bought the $600 LN IMS bearing upgrade kit, and the $200 tool last year without blinking.

Unfortunately 5K miles later the Boxster engine developed a subtle knock. Filter shows metal flakes, so a used 24K mile motor is going in. We all feel there is a chance the bearing could be contaminated with the same metal flakes found in the oil filter, so it's not worth the risk of re-using that bearing. But I don't need a $600 R&D kit again. I just want the bearing part. I want to re-use the LN parts, excepting for the bearing itself. But LN won't sell it that way.

I understand LN not wanting to let the cat out of the bag, and having half assed "LN bearing" installs out there. But I'm using their tool, and their upgraded bearing flange, and shaft. I just need a second bearing, and think (off the cuff) it should be $50 not $600.


I have ties into the Industrial Bearing world, and might cross reference the bearing numbers / dimensions to get a Ceramic Hybrid equivalent from a reputable bearing manufacturer. But rather than go that route, I wonder if someone already did the legwork?

If not, then I'll chase it down over the next couple days and let you know what I find out.

Richard
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Last edited by RichHawk; 06-06-2012 at 12:49 PM..
Old 06-06-2012, 12:30 PM
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single or double row? I would need pics of your LN bearing cages. So you would have to remove the bearing.
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Old 06-06-2012, 12:51 PM
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I'll post pics and dimensions of the original one that came out last year. I think I have comparison pics of the LN side by side to the original, But won't have the LN out of the old motor for a while yet.

Richard
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Old 06-06-2012, 01:12 PM
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As for a bearing you can purchase the double row for 100$ and the single for 68$ off the shelf, but the nylon cages will melt under the temps of the engine. I will need to know the style cage LN used. That is why I need a pic. Yes, I will charge 50$ + parts on top to do it, but you can do it yourself since you do have the cages in the LN bearing just check the wear on them.
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Old 06-06-2012, 01:23 PM
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single row S6204-2RS Bearing 20x47x14 Si3N4 Ceramic Stainless Steel Sealed Nylon Premium ABEC-5 Ball Bearings
doulble row MR5204C-2RS/C3 NB2 (xx),, Radial Bearings
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Old 06-06-2012, 01:25 PM
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Tim,
You are my hero!!!
Not only for providing the bearing info, But Because I just got done reading your IMS oiling mod thread. WOW, just wow. I see this as a parallel to the external oiling tubes on my 3.2L air cooled motor that feed the cam housings. Yeah, it's like that.

Has Flat 6 or LN talked to you about making the oil galley Hard tube IMS bearing upgrade as a mod for the engines? you definitely deserve some credit for it.


I have the original single row bearing in a zip lock uncontaminated, both seals intact from 2002 Boxster. I'll open it up tonight, but I suspect you know what I'll find oil, no grease. No oil in the IMS tube in the 75K mile 2002 original bearing that was upgraded to LN.

Do you still want to know more about what LN is using for their races?
Richard
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Last edited by RichHawk; 06-07-2012 at 05:32 AM..
Old 06-06-2012, 02:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RichHawk View Post
Tjm,

Do you still want to know more about what LN is using for their races?
Richard
Yes, as the LN cages are the ones you need to replace in the new bearing, they could be "W" or "t8hb" etc. just need a pic to see which one. You can't use the nylon cages in the new bearings, they melt at 250F.
Please let me know what you find in your stock bearing, Pics are great, or send to me and I will pay shipping and I can send you microscope pics of the bearing and show you the wear, I can also inspect the LN bearing and tell you if any damage was done.
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Old 06-06-2012, 03:01 PM
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Below are pictures of the Stock Single row Bearing that came out of the 2002 Boxster.
It was in good shape, Very little oil in the IMS tube, Both seals intact,
It had typical wear for 75K miles of use, but was not sloppy, noisy or otherwise in bad shape.

When I removed the seal (yesterday) it is full of dirty looking and smelling oil. no grease. A drip or three of this oil got by the seals in the last year while it sat in a ziplock bag, in a plastic sealed container.

Dimensional pics and NSK part number just for reference.

NSK 6204Du17 England and 782 are the markings on the rubber faced seal













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Old 06-07-2012, 05:46 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by feelyx View Post
Yes, as the LN cages are the ones you need to replace in the new bearing, they could be "W" or "t8hb" etc. just need a pic to see which one. You can't use the nylon cages in the new bearings, they melt at 250F.
Please let me know what you find in your stock bearing, Pics are great, or send to me and I will pay shipping and I can send you microscope pics of the bearing and show you the wear, I can also inspect the LN bearing and tell you if any damage was done.
Tim,
I won't have the LN bearing out in time to take a seal off, and get you a picture of the cages in there, then wait for a new IMS to show up. First step is to get a new IMS Bearing in the new engine, and get the car off my mechanic's lift. I am being sensitive to his time and resources.
It sounds like you have a source for the Ceramic bearings already, with different options for Cages that are not Nylon. I trust in your opinion of the "W" vs "t8hb" cages, since I don't even know what those mean. I will get you pictures of the LN for your reference though.

What do you suggest I buy? How do I buy one from you? I need to get it on order today.
Thanks again!
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Old 06-07-2012, 05:54 AM
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sent a pm to ya Rich
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Old 06-07-2012, 08:20 AM
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You are doing the right thing by replacing this bearing after it has seen any foreign object debris contamination.

That said, LN and I have both done everything possible to ensure that bearings are not sold without full kits. We learned this in the early days of retrofit kit sales when people tried to half ass extract bearings and created issues. See, if we have a bearing fail no one explains why, they don't explain that the engine previously grenades and the bearing was half ass extracted and the new one installed, they simply say the bearing failed and then we have to deal with the BS. The best way to avoid that is to create policies and make no exception to them. Yes it sucks, but thats just the way that it is and the way it has to be.

The same rules apply to me as one of the founding developers of the technology- I also cannot buy just a bearing and I understand why and don't ***** about it.

BTW- A couple of the links I have seen posted match those that are linked to Chinese made bearings. We sourced some of these to test against the LN bearing and they failed horribly in as little as 3,000 miles. Just because the specs of the bearing are advertised in a certain manner means nothing. I'll not tell anyone here what the issue with these bearings are- they can spend the money and time that we did to learn exactly why they suck. I believe that anyone wanting to develop a solution deserves the same pain and suffering that we have endured over time.

Quote:
Has Flat 6 or LN talked to you about making the oil galley Hard tube IMS bearing upgrade as a mod for the engines? you definitely deserve some credit for it.
Felyx certainly deserves some credit for thinking outside the box. However LN and Flat 6 carry out our own R&D and have already completed the development of our true IMS Solution. When it gets through the patent processes and ends up on the market in 2014, it'll have 7 years of development behind it.

Don't worry- Excellence has been made aware of the developments since day one and has been kept abreast of all our trials and tribulations with it. We did this to verify when we started the final testing and application. As we speak version #4 of the solution is running in a test engine (literally running for days and days at a time without shutting off) and it will be running for 48 hours straight with a 28 channel data acquisition system logging the vitals at all times. It helps when I can see the vitals of the engine from 43 miles away :-) every 48 hours it comes apart and is inspected for different characteristics, or we throw an oil variable or other challenge at it. We are in the the final steps now with "start cycling" the engine automatically on and off about 50,000 times to see what how start up wear impacts the design. Coming up with a way to electronically allow the start up and shut down of the engine was quite a challenge in its self.

I commend feelyx for his efforts, been there and done that, some it it was done before we even successfully completed the first IMS bearing retrofit. No, we don't post everything, but we make sure to share it with a few certain individuals who can verify what it was and when it was done :-)

Back on topic, I'd suck it up and apply an IMS Update which updates the entire shaft, not just the retrofit bearing. If we spilt any crankcase I refuse to put it back together without a full update. If the case is apart, go overkill.
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Last edited by NOTASIX; 06-07-2012 at 07:11 PM..
Old 06-07-2012, 06:40 PM
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To answer a few emails I've received... I do not sell bearings.... I can inspect them, and can build them, but sorry I do not sell them.

Rich asked "I just need a second bearing, and think (off the cuff) it should be $50 not $600."
So I directed him to the ones in that price range, but, I do not sell them.

Thank you everyone that emailed
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Old 06-08-2012, 06:14 AM
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I can inspect them, and can build them, but sorry I do not sell them.
Wise man. We hardly ever sell them these days as well. Once I develop something and perfect it for market, I pretty much go to the next thing and care little about sales.

If one buys a 50 dollar bearing they will get exactly what they pay for. This is a Porsche, not a Kia. The fastest way to lose thousands of dollars with these engines is to try and save one hundred by accepting a compromise.
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Old 06-08-2012, 06:29 AM
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I agree that we want very quality components in our expensive German vehicles.

Jake is the perfect example of the highest quality and continual improvement of the Porsche engine that there is. And if I had $12,000 to throw at a Boxster engine I would go nowhere else.

But the reality of today is I have an unexpected multiple thousand dollar expense to get this Boxster back on the road. Taking a used engine, with only 24,000 miles add the labor cost, and it is $6K before you start talking about upgrades. It's REAL easy to get upside down in a Boxster if the engine goes. So adhering to a budget is important.

What is the real cost of the LN bearing? If you were to buy this sized bearing for a Kia, as Jake eluded to, it would cost you $14. That's about what the stock Porsche steel ball one costs, by the way. LN has a much better than $14 bearing. But 10x more? 42x more?
If LN pays over $100 for the bearing they sell in their kit, I'll eat my oil filter. LN likely has a standard Hybrid bearing made with metal cages instead of nylon, and no seals. They buy and re-sell, a very quality bearing but they didn't create it. Heck, Porsche didn't create their cheap version either. It's a standard metric sized bearing.
Ceramic Hybrid Bearings have been around for a LONG time, and are more expensive than the Porsche standard Steel roller bearing. It makes sense to use a Hybrid for it's increased longevity. But is the LN one magical? I think not.

So what we're paying $600 for is the extensive knowledge and trial and error, and R&D that comes with that $50-$100 bearing. I'm ok with that. I Bought that. I've given LN $800 less than 5 K miles ago.

I'l admit LN has done a fabulous job protecting their intellectual property. They have helped perpetuate a fear mindset about the IMS and that their $600 kit is the ultimate mind at rest solution. Good for them. Capitalism at it's best.

You really only know what you have experienced yourself. And what I've experienced myself is the one stock Porsche Bearing I've pulled out. It was tight, smooth and full of oil at 75K miles. The $0.50 o-ring around the original Porsche Stud was weeping oil, so the whole thing was replaced with the $600 upgrade solution. (including their $50 Bearing!)

I wanted to re-use the upgraded components. LN originally told me that their (5K mile old) bearing could be removed and reused in my new engine, but then recanted deciding that possible metal contamination makes it a bad idea. I understand that too. But do I need a new Flange? A new Stud? Do I need to pay for the R&D again?

It's all moot. We're buying a new LN kit for $600. Grudgingly. I sure would have wished they could have provided just the bearing. I would have given $200 for the new bearing alone. However, I'm not the only one with a say in this motor, and fully understand all the other opinions, and have bowed to the conservatism.

(Charles, if you are reading this, do a cost vs payback analysis on reselling the bearing alone. You've already got competition undermining the $600 kit. Don't stick too long to the premium is the only answer solution. I'd bet you can make more in volume, Besides I'm NOT a happy customer. I woulda been at $200, and would have not be voicing my opinions so loud. )

I did purchase another (non LN) Hybrid bearing, from a quality source, for comparison. Yes, it was less than $100. I've used Ceramic hybrid bearings in million dollar machines before with very good longevity compared to the standard steel bearings that they replaced.

If I were the only one deciding things for this motor, my cost pain point Vs Risk would be:
1)Reuse the existing LN (5K old) system, including the original LN bearing. AFTER a very detailed and microscopic inspection of the bearing for embedded metal particles ($0 extra, just the time)

2) Use the new non LN Hybrid bearing and the LN flange and stud. ($80 extra with shipping)

3) new LN fear factor solution $600

I'm still going to pull the 5K old LN bearing, and inspect it. Plus I'm going to compare it to the $80 solution visually. Quality can sometimes be seen. Hardness and durability tests take more destructive methods. I probably won't go to that level, but might just donate it to someone that might.
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Old 06-08-2012, 09:07 AM
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LN isn't the only one with marketing restrictions on the way they sell their IMS bearings. Nor are their policies the most restrictive...see Casper who also sells a ceramic bearing. And given the stories of installation fiascoes I can understand why.

My experience with these things is you get overwhelmed with requests to cherry pick just this piece of the bundle and not another. And once it becomes known you'll allow one person to do it, then everybody wants their very own customized version. Because after all, the equity of it should be obvious.

IMS bearings are only part of his business. There are very complex and unique parts he has developed where he only sold less than 25 units. It is the profitable items that have to carry the investment in the unprofitable items. If you were one of the 25 who benefited, just think how you'd feel if that part wasn't available.
Old 06-08-2012, 03:57 PM
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Quote:
It's REAL easy to get upside down in a Boxster if the engine goes. So adhering to a budget is important.
Nothing new to the world of Porsches and long time owners know and accept this. Hell, I was installing 10 thousand dollar engines into 914s and 912s worth 5K bucks 15+ years ago. Today we still do, because the heart of any Porsche is its power plant.

If you were worried about economics the ONLY wise choice would have been selling the car broken and taking that loss, no extensive repair is going to keep you from going upside down in a Boxster at today's prices with a market flooded with cheap cars.

Quote:
So what we're paying $600 for is the extensive knowledge and trial and error, and R&D that comes with that $50-$100 bearing. I'm ok with that. I Bought that. I've given LN $800 less than 5 K miles ago.
Something that you haven't considered (unfairly) is the fact that these bearings are custom made in batches of a few hundred at once and then the flanges are fitted to that entire run of bearings. While the units are of standardized nature the flanges are hand fitted during the QA processes by the LN crew.

This is why selling you a bearing with an unknown flange is not going to do you any favors and could lead to failure. If that bearing failed no one would care that you reused a flange that wasn't perfectly fitted- Its a bearing failure and we have to deal with the fallout.

You look at this from a numbers standpoint related to cost- we look at this from a numbers standpoint in regard to potential for issues, fallout and plain BS that none of us have time to deal with. Basically you can't afford not to replace the whole damn unit and we can't afford not to sell anything less than a whole damn unit thats matched during a QA process.

Quote:
What is the real cost of the LN bearing? If you were to buy this sized bearing for a Kia, as Jake eluded to, it would cost you $14.
Unfair. You are insinuating that the price of the LN bearing is inflated simply because it is being applied to a Porsche. I can tell you as one of the founding developers that this couldn't be further from the truth. This is the way the "vendor haters" think, because they don't want anyone to make a dime from them or their car.

It took more than 20 months to develop the bearing to the point that we were happy with selling it to the public. This bearing isn't sourced from a generic supplier.

Quote:
That's about what the stock Porsche steel ball one costs, by the way.
Yet again thats an assumption, because we tried to pinpoint a cost and it wasn't possible. Consider that Porsche bought the bearings in tens of thousands at a time, if you know anything about economics you know how volume and price correlate.

Quote:
LN has a much better than $14 bearing. But 10x more? 42x more?
If LN pays over $100 for the bearing they sell in their kit, I'll eat my oil filter.
Ketchup might make it taste better.
That said it is none of the consumers business what any vendor pays for anything. It isn't fair to insinuate that LN has price gouged you or anyone else, because thats not the case. As a consumer you should be concerned with one thing:
-Return on investment/ value

Since a 600 dollar bearing kit can effectively help avoid a 15K+ engine replacement I'd say the return on investment is adequate.

Furthermore, remember that a bearing retrofit wasn't ever supposed to be possible according to Porsche and had we not worked for years to develop the bearing, procedure and extraction tools you'd not be having such a dilemma right now, because you wouldn't be able to buy a retrofit bearing for 6 THOUSAND dollars... But you wouldn't need the bearing because the bearing was supposedly non-removable. I performed a miraculous procedure when I carried out the first retrofit and still to this day there are people in this community that state the bearing can't be removed. Think about that before you start slinging mud because a 600 dollar replacement is better than nothing.

Quote:
LN likely has a standard Hybrid bearing made with metal cages instead of nylon, and no seals. They buy and re-sell, a very quality bearing but they didn't create it.
How much would you like to wager on this? We tried buying commercially available solutions, but none were worth a damn. The changes that different revisions of the bearing saw numbered into the dozens before the final bearing characteristics were adopted.

One single characteristic makes all other bearings inadequate compared to the bearing that LN adopted. I know what that is because I tested it, ran it in my car and did everything within my power to break it. You'd have to hold a gun to my head for me to divulge it. Its the one thing that no one else has considered with these bearings and it takes someone thats well versed with the engines to even note it.

Wise choice to suck it up and buy the replacement kit. Had you gotten the questionable bearing you would have compromised the custom fit of the bearing to the flange (its not all about measurements) and would have created a variable that would more than likely lead to compromise.

Thanks for giving me another topic for my upcoming WTI M96 engine mechanical class, I'll definitely go over why shops can't ever allow their customer to compromise the project by introducing non matched, questionable components into the engine.

In closing I'll state that NONE of the R&D costs to develop the technology has been passed on to the purchaser. LN and my company utilized the strengths of our aircooled Porsche side of the businesses to fund the projects. Having my own engine and chassis dynos, extensive data logging systems, test vehicles along with LN's ability to manufacture any component imaginable with the use of CNC machines that fill a huge facility in Illinois we were able to do this without any outside help other than a couple of bearing Engineers that helped us observe changes in the bearings through development.
But none of those other things matter as much as good old fashioned effort and the ability to improvise, hell I built my first successful extraction tool from 12 bucks worth of material from the local hardware store and the A/C compressor mount adaptor from a Porsche 914 engine. We still use that puller today and it has extracted every bearing we have retrofitted since 2008.

The original cost of the bearing kit was tentatively set at 999.00, so be glad that we decided not to pay ourselves what our efforts were actually worth~
All of these new companies offering bearings and solutions have jumped on the bandwagon that we started and all of their solutions offer a degree of compromise thats much greater than the reduction in cost that their bearing solution offers. Thats the way the world works as you have leaders that develop, apply and perfect, moochers that come along and get their fair share and looters that swoop in, have things made offshore and cut the throats of everyone else in the food chain. We knew it was going to happen and it took longer than we expected. The mistakes we made with protection of the current retrofit will not be repeated with the new IMS Solution, it will require licensing to install which includes specific training.

I apologize in advance for coming across as abrasive, it simply ruffles my feathers when outsiders that assume they know the inner workings of this development short change what we have done and accuse anyone of price gouging. I'll not standby and allow it to happen without setting the record straight- Online or eyeball to eyeball in person.
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'88 Carrera with 1/4 million miles. 2003 996 Cabriolet, 2004 Cayenne Turbo.

Last edited by NOTASIX; 06-08-2012 at 10:09 PM..
Old 06-08-2012, 09:57 PM
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Hi Jake,
Is the new "IMS Solution" designed to replace the existing bearing replacement kit?
Thanks in advance.
Old 06-09-2012, 07:53 AM
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Originally Posted by Doswheelers View Post
Hi Jake,
Is the new "IMS Solution" designed to replace the existing bearing replacement kit?
Thanks in advance.
Not a replacement, because the current bearing works fine.

The "IMS Solution" is the first design change ever created for the IMS Bearing. With release slated in 2014 don't wait around for it.

In 6 minutes from now our latest 48 hour test run of the solution will end, if it looks good all the patent paperwork can be finalized and we plan on releasing the story to the media soon afterward (when protection is in place). The technology is completely tested, however we are applying some additional processes to see how they impact the engine, mostly in regard to power output.

The "Solution" will be retrofittable, just like the current arrangement and can be applied with no special tools or processes. Installation of the "solution" is much like that of the current retrofit.

We had epic failures earlier in the development of the "Solution" with one of the arrangements lasting less than one minute. It feels good to be winding down~
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Old 06-09-2012, 08:11 AM
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Great news...will be watching.
Old 06-09-2012, 08:18 AM
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Any update Rich? Did you get your engine in?
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