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Old 8th December 2019, 20:33
euclid223 euclid223 is offline
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Default Recommended Engine Preparation

I've been slowly working through a Roadrunner SR2 build (thread in the 7 style forum) and I can see the engine /gearbox swiftly approaching. The TL;DR question is `how do I decide what to do and what not to do in preparing the engine / gearbox for my build?`

Some facts to go with this
  • I'd class myself very much as an amateur in training. I've changed single cam head gaskets on a couple of different cars, stripped down my MX5 donor (including lifting off the shell from the powerframe) and re-packed the CV joints. That's about as deep and involved as I've gotten so far.
  • I'm absolutely on a budget. I'll be getting a loom and Canem's ECU from Roadrunner. Everything else will be pretty much stock on the first pass and until I get to know the completed car
  • The engine & gearbox came from a mx5 1.8i 700 donor with 100k miles and a good service history. I drove this hard for 3 months to see if anything popped. Pulled smoothly and the gearbox felt fine
  • Since then it has stood for 5 years with the original oil in it

A list of what I plan on doing (helpfully refined by redratbike and peterux below)
  • Split and replace the clutch (this is one area I may uprate a little)
  • Test compression
  • Remove and clean out the sump (as the engine has been sat for 5 years)
  • Clean up and paint the block / rocker cover
  • Replace cam belt
  • Replace auxiliary drive belt
  • Replace thermostat
  • Replace water pump
  • Replace filters & oil (check for metal)
  • Replace spark plugs
  • Remove rocker cover and smother camshafts in engine assembly lubricant
  • Remove the powerframe bracket from the gearbox (this is for clearance in the transmission tunnel on the chassis)
  • Before starting remove spark plugs and crank engine to get some oil pressure

I`m open to any critique / advice / pointers please. I`m just getting started on research and figured an open question is a good place to start �� I'll come back and update this post with the list I arrive at

Last edited by euclid223; 10th December 2019 at 18:44.. Reason: Revised list based on feedback
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Old 9th December 2019, 05:27
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redratbike redratbike is offline
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Personally i’d Leave the head do not remove .compression test if this shows anything up ..then you may have to dig deeper . change the cam belt if it has one water pump , service it with plugs,oil filter ,clean and paint ..
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Old 9th December 2019, 09:37
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peterux peterux is offline
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Ditto the above.
Also replace the thermostat, as they can stick, and the aux drive belt as they're cheap.
On my engine that was laid up for 5 years I took the cam cover off and smothered the camshaft in engine assembly lubricant so they were lubed on initial start up.
Before starting, remove the spark plugs and crank the engine to get some oil pressure.
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Old 9th December 2019, 16:34
euclid223 euclid223 is offline
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Thank you for the advice both. I've revised the list above into a bit of a prioritised plan and it suddenly feels much less scary
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Old 9th December 2019, 21:05
Lucky@LeMans Lucky@LeMans is offline
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If its been stood that long the oil in the sump might have turned to sludge. I would remove the sump and clean it out. The sludge won't drain out but it will get sucked into the pick up pipe and block everything up.
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Old 10th December 2019, 18:43
euclid223 euclid223 is offline
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Thanks Lucky@LeMans. I'll update that in the list above
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