Saturday, February 27, 2010

Stroker Install Complete - Day 45

Just picked up the car.. still taking it easy because of breaking in and still need to do a crank relearn!

I have a check engine light for
P0036 HO2S Heater Control Circuit (Bank 1 Sensor 2)
P0054 HO2S Heater Resistance (Bank 1, Sensor 2)
P0141 02 Sensor Heater Circuit Malfunction (Bank 1 Sensor 2)
So I emailed kirk@vector to see what that's all about. (from the sound of it it almost seems like the O2 after the cats are turned back on somehow?)

Also - it's LOUD... thinking i'll have to switch back to stock mufflers or put in some extra resonators under the car...

Haven't dyno'd yet , so will do that later on.. definitely excited to have my car back!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Bud's Machine Shop - Short Review w/ Pictures

Update: Obviously after my engine went *boom* and I was told politely to go F-Off since 'performance engines do not have warranty', even though the issue was caused because Bud's installed the pickup tube wrong (at an angle/wrong O-ring) I can NOT recommend them. I'm leaving the original post up though for historical perspective.

As I mentioned in previous posts the block had to be machined by a machineshop to get the new rotating assembly installed. Not sure if I mentioned the actual shop so I figured i'd do a quick little write-up on them. The work was done by "Bud's Machine Shop" .

Bud's machine shop is ran by owner Bud (Right in picture), and his 'main guy' Bob (Left in picture) - Apologies for the poor picture quality - one of those cheap little disposable cameras! (As always - click to enlarge any of these pictures)

Both Bud & Bob (boy that's a lot of B words!) seem very knowledgeable and will take the time they need to get it just right! They were in constant contact with me and every time I stopped by or contacted them they took the time to talk to me about how far they were along and answer any questions or concerns I had which I always appreciate.They even were nice enough to take some pictures throughout the entire build process for me!

Bob overboring the Block
Just a smidgen more as according to Bob the bore they measured was around 4.001"

A somewhat blurry photo of what looks like 1 rod installed on the crank with the girdle loosely laying on top as they're checking for clearance issues (bottom up view of engine)

That is a pretty darn tight fit - you can see where the girdle has a little recessed area right by the rod, but they decided to be safe and grind it down a little more
Delicious Over-bored Goodness - have you had yours today?

Not quite sure what's going on here but it looks like they're machining the caps/block together to get a good fit on the new crank (at least that's what I'm guessing!).

Balancing of the Crankshaft etc

Beautiful -18cc Coated Diamond Pistons going into the block

Front all together after a lot of fenagling
(and boy that looks like a dirty stock oilpump, but I called to verify and that IS the new one. All the dirt/grime must've been a result of all the oils/machining etc..)

Overall the experience at Bud's Machine is that they're a great shop that cares that they do a quality job and take the time with all their customers to ensure it's done right. As with many Machineshops though, at least from what I've heard this seems to be common, they are SWAMPED and depending on the time of year you're easily looking at a 2-3 week wait before they can even touch your block. However, it is well worth the wait to let Bud & Bob, with real expertise and eye for detail work on your engine!

So if you need any machining done on your engine I highly recommend Bud's Machine Shop!

Buds Machine & Engine Shop
12019 Pacific Hwy. SW #C
Lakewood, Washington 98499
Phone: 253-588-BUDS (588-2837)
Fax: 253-588-9926
Hours: Monday-Friday 8:00 am - 4:30 pm

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Stroker Install - Day Whatever.... (ok 34..)

Yeah this is still dragging on... way... too... long...
However, The end is in sight!

First a quick segway:  Nick @ TurboTech was kind enough to post some comments on my complaints I had with their install of my headers/torque converter last year. I'm not quite sure where it went or what post he actually responded to - but when I find it I'll link to it so everyone can see it. (Edit: Found it here on the actual Headers Post) I think while I disagree with some of the 'options' he lists as what could have caused some of my issues, being in a hurry to get going probably was one, if not 'the' major factor  - thus time for a 'thorough' after-install wasn't available to possibly spot some of the issues. Their response is fair enough imo to close the book on this one. So no more griping about them from me :) Thanks Nick - appreciate you taking the time to respond in detail!

Ok so.. what's going on with this nightmare project....The machine shop was done last week already - just didn't have time to update. They ended up putting it together and taking everything apart about 5 times from what they told me to make sure everything fit JUST right. Minor tweaks to the pistons, overbored the cylinders a smidgen to fit the 4.005"s in there, rebalanced the whole thing. All-in-all they were extremely pleased with how it turned out and the quality of the parts I had provided which made me feel good.

The only major problem they ran into was with the Girdle (you knew that was coming didn't you? ;) )
While it already had some beveled areas for clearance where the bottoms of the rods get close to it - they cleaned them up a little more to make sure it could never hit which was great. However, apparently with the G8's oilpan being a little different etc there were 2 things they ran into - one was the oil pickup screen / tube assembly didn't line up right because of the gridle and was off by 1/4 - 1/2 Inch - that took some major finagling to get to work - Then once they got that under control they ran into the issue of the oil pressure relief valve that's unique to the L76/LS3 oil pan. The girdle was designed for LS1/LS2s etc and while the block technically is a LS2 block, that valve in the oil pan was actually sticking out and in the way of the girdle.
The main Machine shop guys (Bud & Bob) ended up exchanging emails & phone calls with Demetri from DM Performance (great guy with great service!) and it was decided they could safely notch the girdle to make room for this nuisance piece. (inside the red marked area)

This makes me wonder whether or not we could switch oil pans to something a little more 'normal' and perhaps not require 9 quarts of oil... hmmmm. More questions for Crazy Paul! ;)

My intake manifold & Throttle body are on their way back, and my heads are already back as well,though Livernois forgot to send back the valve covers & spring seats that were sent with it - OOPS. Rick @ Livernois jumped on that though and is making sure they get there ASAP! So really now it's just a matter of putting it all back together and hope it actually works!

  Anyway - so far I've come to this conclusion: (and some of the recent comments - thanks for those! really appreciate it - echo this sentiment as well):

Anyone thinking of going a stroker: Just buy the damn shortblock and move your heads etc over. You'll get more options (LS3 base, LSX Base etc), Will save you TONS of time and probably will even be cheaper in the long run as well! (especially when you figure in you can sell your entire old short-block, but it's hard to sell just a stock used crankshaft/rods & pistons etc). Oh well.. lessons learned I guess, but hey at least I'll have an unique engine combination :)

And for the guy being nervous about doing just the DOD delete cam - that should take from what I've seen about 4 days max or so. Mine is just a nightmare because of the entire new rotating assembly & machining involved and 90% of my time was spent just sitting waiting on the machineshop , which you luckily won't have to deal with :) (and while irritating it took that long I DO appreciate them taking their time working on it making sure everything was 100% satisfactory so in the end NO bad words about the machineshop!)

Monday, February 8, 2010

Stroker Install - Day 26

This is getting more and more painful - what I was hoping would be a 2-3 week project is now going on 4 weeks and it looks like I won't have my car back until after the Holiday...which will make it at least a 5 if not 6 week endeavor.

On the plus side the machine IS actually working on the block right now - however they called me with some 'bad news'... What I thought were cam bearings (just glanced at them) were actually Rod-Bearings and no Cam bearings were included - This actually makes sense since normally with a cam-package you don't swap those out because everything stays in place. This is one item that despite all my preparation efforts was obviously overlooked. The machine shop was going to get these though (Clevite just like my other bearings) so that's fine by me.

 The other thing they were going to get was the front and back crank seal since that was not included either with the Stroker kit. I'm not sure if the old ones could be re-used safely so we're just going all new. This basically means that except for a FEW items (The actual Block/Heads - and they're getting ported) I basically have a brand new engine when done (who knows when that'll be though! lol) so I'll have to baby it for a bit before I can really open it up.

Hopefully if there are no more other unforseen delays the machineshop should be done with it sometime this week so i'm keeping my fingers crossed!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Stroker Install - Day 22

Well what's new you're wondering? Not much unfortunately! The waiting game continues... The machineshop has been swamped and then when they were just about ready to start on things we found out they accidentally gave the main studs (for use with the girdle) to the other shop in some confusion. Basically the other shop was going to be picking up the new valves and other 'head' related items from the machineshop (who had all parts), and somehow these got mixed in. So that sorta put a hold on things on top of all the other delays.

After talking to the machine shop again today we now have a more firm ETA of supposedly EARLY next week that they'll be done with it. Overboring etc should actually be happening today or tomorrow! I'm keeping my fingers crossed.. it's over 3 weeks now and it's killing me!

Meanwhile the heads are over at Livernois getting ported and a valvejob and my throttle body & intake manifold are at Fasterproms getting ported and I already have an updated tune from Vector. So with some luck it will all be put together next week - But with how things have been going my bet would be on after President's day! :(