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theiceman's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Ontario Canada
Posts: 2,447
ok obviously I am late to the party but gonna offer my cents anyway
my car had 250K km on it . broke 3 studs.

did it myself, top end only. machine shop said heads and valves were perfect and needed nothing. They cleaned them and put in new seals. cleaned the carriers for me too. also had them remove all old exhaust studs.

I got steel head studs , put it all back together and it has been spectacular for the last 3 years.

1976 Yamaha XS360 ( Beats Walkin')
1978 911 SC Targa ( Yamaha Support Vehicle )
2006 Audi A4 2.0T (Porsche Support Vehicle )
2014 Audi A4 2.0T Technik (Audi Support Vehicle)
Old 08-02-2018, 11:31 AM
  Pelican Parts Catalog | Tech Articles | Promos & Specials    Reply With Quote #61 (permalink)
Join Date: May 2017
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 258
Originally Posted by Bill Douglas View Post
If you do get someone else to do it you can speak to them with confidence. Read the Wayne book then ask for this and that to be done. Make sure certain seals are replaced and "while it's out" things get done. Who knows, maybe it's a good time to get new cam's and SSIs...
This is exactly (almost) where I am. Took my 80 SC Targa in for a valve adjustment and to check the springs and they found a broken head stud. Next Monday they're going to start working on it. I have Wayne's book, and while I haven't read it through, I have read some of the relevant sections and I've searched the forums, so I've been able to ask about whether things are being done or not, included or not, and I've had a few things added to get them done "while it's out."
Old 08-02-2018, 12:46 PM
  Pelican Parts Catalog | Tech Articles | Promos & Specials    Reply With Quote #62 (permalink)
1981 911SC
Join Date: Mar 2018
Location: San Francisco
Posts: 68
Thanks again for all of the great feedback and different opinions - really helpful in thinking through the risk/reward here.

I think I am leaning towards having it professionally done.

When you factor in CA State sales tax on the purchase of a new car, the sell and upgrade option looks tough. I'd have to find a better car than mine with the rebuild for $33k or less in the best case scenario - I don't think I have a good chance of doing that.

I also think that having the car back in 4-6 weeks rather than 4-6 months and knowing the job is done perfectly by a pro with a warranty is worth the $5k premium, plus the time to work out a couple other kinks while the rebuild happens sounds great. I'll end up with a car that in my mind is worth about $40k and I'll have a little less than that in it.

This thread has been very helpful to me, maybe it will be for something facing a similar situation in the future.

I'll start another thread on the work from this point on. Thanks everyone!
Old 08-03-2018, 01:58 PM
  Pelican Parts Catalog | Tech Articles | Promos & Specials    Reply With Quote #63 (permalink)
jhelgesen's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2001
Location: Columbia, SC
Posts: 4,288
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One point. Having a receipt for a pro rebuild and records will go a long way for the cars value.
John Helgesen restoration and cage design

"Honest men know that revenge does not taste sweet"
Old 08-03-2018, 02:15 PM
  Pelican Parts Catalog | Tech Articles | Promos & Specials    Reply With Quote #64 (permalink)
rokemester's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Chagrin Falls, Ohio
Posts: 1,161
Originally Posted by sugarwood View Post
How accomplished & serious of a mechanic are you?

Everyone is very supportive, and that's great,
but I will offer another slice of truth and reality.

I know nothing about how hard an engine rebuild is, so I will speak in generalities.

Like you, I would give my left nut to take a shot at doing an engine rebuild. It would be a major life accomplishment.
Many of us can do small repairs, but I could only dream of dropping an engine and rebuilding parts of it. Alone.
I am experienced enough to know I would not dare try that without a hardcore lifetime gearhead psycho mentor in my garage.
Alas, I don't know a single person who could show me, so it's a dream that will never happen for me.
so that is not an option as the car hobby dies a slow suburban home owners association death, and knowledge goes to the grave.

For me, books are practically useless for learning auto mechanics. Maybe these engine books are different.
Half the time you don't even know what you're looking at, if there are even diagrams to begin with.
I have no idea why new owners are always told to buy Wayne's 101 Projects. It was the most superficial automotive repair book I've ever read
Often one crappy photo per repair, if that, it's basically useless unless you already know how to do the repair, and have been there already.
(Bentley's is much better, but YouTube is the best, but there is almost zero for 911 DIY)

Also, when stuff doesn't go as planned, you can use the book to wipe your ass after a Mexican dinner with tequila.
And stuff NEVER goes as planned. Not even the simplest 3 step repair does. That's when you will realize how alone you really are, LOL.

Unless there was a detailed step-by-step video, or your retired dad rebuilds engine for a living, I would not even consider it.
For a simple one or two component repair, we mere mortals take the plunge, and spend the afternoon on a small repair.
But, engine stuff is a whole 'nother ballgame. This is not a brake job, window regulator, fuel pump, or turn signal stalk repair.

Just giving you the flip side of the reality.
There is a significant chance you abort the project part way. Stumped and aborted.
Or screw it up. Or lose parts. Or mix stuff up rendering a useless pile of nothing.
You risk blowing up your engine and trashing it if you do a single thing wrong.
Life gets in the way once the project stalls, and it may never get finished. Ever.

What was supposed to be a lifetime hobby car
now becomes a lifetime pile of parts that your grandkids need to shovel out with a dumpster.
The internet is littered with thousands of examples of decades old aborted projects.
We all know guys in denial with dismantled cars that have not run since the 80s, 90s, and 00's.
And the reason those cars were parked were a lot less serious than an engine rebuild.

It can also sour relations with your garage neighbor as your rebuild becomes a multi-year disaster.

Hell, I know pro shops that have taken 2 years to do a rebuild.
Read this for some time estimates of what it takes professionals
Friend's engine has been in rebuild shop for 2 years. Is this normal?

Very few people can do this level of major DIY just by reading a book.
These are brilliant talented outliers posting on here, but do recognize them as such.
Hell, I bet most professional mechanics have never even rebuilt an engine.
Or, maybe it's easier than a brake job. What do I know.

Don't get in over your head.
Realistic and very well written post! I rebuilt my 66 Bug motor a few years ago and I was helped by various repair books and some excellent YouTube posts. I wouldn’t tackle a 911 engine solo without some “adult supervision”.

Northeast Ohio
1987 Porsche 911 Targa
1966 VW Beetle, 6V
Old 08-05-2018, 03:59 AM
  Pelican Parts Catalog | Tech Articles | Promos & Specials    Reply With Quote #65 (permalink)

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