Ian's S3 13b Turbo II Conversion

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ian65
Posts: 5612
Joined: Wed Mar 30, 2011 12:11 am

Ian's S3 13b Turbo II Conversion

Post by ian65 » Sat Jun 14, 2014 9:44 pm

Well, after the disappointment of discovering terminal corrosion in my last car/project…. things have taken a turn for the better :) :)
The phrase barn find seems to be used these days to describe every rust ridden ruin that someone drags from the bottom of their garden and decides to sell on…. a ‘barn find’ is the last thing that they are.
I have been fortunate to drop on a car that is probably as close to a barn find as it’s possible to get without actually dragging a long forgotten car, covered in straw, out of a farmers outbuilding.
It's a 1986 'C' reg series 3 in sunbeam silver, 52,000 miles...... completely stock with the exception of a glass moonroof

This car was bought new in Brighton in 1986 and was sold to its second owner just down the road in Newhaven in 1988. The car was used until February 1994 when it developed a engine fault at 52,000 miles . The owner then put the car into his garage where it remained until recently when he decided to finally sell it on.
Ramon got a tip that an excellent condition RX7 was for sale and after inspecting the car and confirming its condition, he negotiated and put together a deal which eventually saw me owning the car. It was transported up to my house where I set about re-commissioning it. Usually, this would take a long time and cost a lot but as I had all the refurbished parts off my other s3 project car that had just gone to the great car park in the sky, I've managed to do a thorough re-commission in just a few weeks.
A big thanks to Ramon who twice travelled up all the way from Brighton to help me sort the car out and to Keith for helping out with transport and storage….. cheers gents 0-0



20 years of inactivity in storage, whilst protecting the bodywork from the dreaded rust and damp, has seen plenty of the mechanical components either seize up or perish.
First job was to try and get the car running to determine the condition of the engine..... was the engine fault something terminal or just a fuelling or ignition problem..... hopes were high that it was something minor....
A new battery was bought, the cooling system was drained, flushed and refilled, the fuel tank was drained, the filter changed but the fuel pump was dead. A good second hand pump out of my rotorshed replaced the dead pump and then oil squirted into the housing before I tried to spin the engine over.
At last, the moment of truth.... turned the key and.................................................nothing, not a thing.
Checked the fuses, checked the wiring in the engine bay, still nothing and then I traced the starting loom from the battery to where it connect to the........ well, nothing actually 'cause some sod had nicked the starter motor off the car..... no wonder it wouldn't start.
Back to the rotorshed to find a starter motor which was duly installed and again I turned the key.....
This time the engine spun over so after building the oil pressure , I plugged the fuel pump in and gave it some choke. It fired up and ran but sounded a bit gutless and struggled to rev over about 3500 revs..... still. at least it ran.
Next up, I tried to fix the clutch so that I could at least move the car under its own power..... the clutch pedal went partially down and then stopped and the clutch just didn't work.
I swapped the master and slave cylinders but just couldn't bleed the clutch and the pedal still had minimal travel..... tried jacking the car up and starting it in gear to try to free off whatever it was that was stuck but soon came to the conclusion that the gearbox was going to have to come out to sort this problem.
After jacking the car up and removing the gearbox, it was found that the clutch release bearing was completely seized onto the sleeve it slides on.... in fact, it was so seized, that I had to use a 3 leg puller to get it off....

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I cleaned up the input shaft sleeve and fitted a new release bearing....

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The sleeve was cleaned up and a new release bearing was installed with some white grease to lube it and a good second hand clutch was swapped in, in place of the existing item. Gearbox back in, hydraulics bled and hey presto, a working clutch.

Ramon travelled up for the day and we tried to sort the sick engine out...... it soon became apparent that there was zero compression on the rear rotor.... a boroscope was put into the leading plug hole in the rear housing and damage could be seen to the apex seals and rotor so it didn't take much working out that this engine had had it.
The engine was stripped and whilst the front rotor, housing and seals were all good, the rear tips were smashed to bits and had taken the rotor and the housing with them....

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the front housing was in very good condition with only minimal edge wear...

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but the rear housing was properly mangled...

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I had a cunning plan however in the form of the Elford turbo engine that had just been pulled from my rusty project car -turbo- ......... so the old dead engine was pulled out of this car, the hateful iron factory exhaust was wrestled from the car and skipped and then the Elford engine was fitted. To control the heat, I've put dual MR2 electric fans in as well, together with a turbo 2 oil cooler...

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Loads of other work has been done to re-commission this car......anyone thinking of taking a car that’s been in long term storage, even under ideal conditions should be aware that the list of items needing replacement or refurbishment to make the car reliable and safe is likely to be extensive. We see it time and time again on the forums where someone buys a car that hasn’t turned a wheel for over a decade and then expects to put some clean fuel in it and drive it every day with 100% reliability.

Other jobs / parts include.....
New battery, electric fans, headlight motors stripped and re-greased
Fuel pump, fuel filter, soft fuel lines, new old stock fuel tank
Brake master cylinder, all calipers rebuilt with new seals, skimmed brake discs, new pads, new flexible brake hoses
Front suspension polybushed with new drop links and idler arm bushes
Replacement clutch, release bearing, master cylinder, slave cylinder, flexible clutch hose
New tyres

In addition:
With the engine out, I cleaned up the engine bay and all the fixings were replaced with either new gold passivated or stainless.
Elford engine, exhaust, fc oil cooler, engine, gearbox, diff oil and antifreeze
Custom air intake to draw cool air from the front of the car .

Today I finally drove the car out of the garage and took a few photos.....














Drum roll please...


















Tah Dah!!


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At the moment, the oil cooler is bypassed ...... just need to get some new oil cooler lines made up and then it's time to book this cars 1st mot for over 20 years th:

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spirit r
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Location: Germany Black Forest
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Re: Not another barn find..... but almost

Post by spirit r » Sat Jun 14, 2014 10:46 pm

Hi Ian,
First letter of congratulation it is my :lol:
Happy to see your smile in my fantasy reading your happy ending story. Really cool story cool car high quality get 10 Points from germany.
Thomas :D

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ian65
Posts: 5612
Joined: Wed Mar 30, 2011 12:11 am

Re: Not another barn find..... but almost

Post by ian65 » Sat Jun 14, 2014 10:49 pm

thanks Thomas, I've got some good plans for this car.

mc turbo

Re: Not another barn find..... but almost

Post by mc turbo » Sat Jun 14, 2014 11:11 pm

looking good ian im very happy for u! i cant wait till i get i get my janspeed turbo back from rx motors even managed to find a janspeed vin plate from tepper!

BO0557
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Joined: Fri Oct 07, 2011 12:08 pm
Location: Kent UK - Sydney Aus

Re: Not another barn find..... but almost

Post by BO0557 » Sat Jun 14, 2014 11:13 pm

HOLY :shock: :shock: :shock: :shock: :shock: that thing is mint!!#

what a score that is ian and the fresh looking elford looks right at home in there :)
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RamoNZ
Posts: 798
Joined: Wed Jul 13, 2011 3:56 pm
Location: Auckland, New Zealand

Re: Not another barn find..... but almost

Post by RamoNZ » Sat Jun 14, 2014 11:47 pm

The car was good to start but Ian has really put the hard work and effort into making this car.

The base car combined with his bits had turned what could have been a sad story into a legend of a car.

Good luck with the mot Ian though I'm sure you won't need it ;)
Series 3 13b EGi 6 port, Tender Blue
Series 2 12a stock, Silver
Series 1 RX2 12a, Herschel Orange

Chud
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Location: North Dorset, UK

Re: Not another barn find..... but almost

Post by Chud » Sun Jun 15, 2014 12:06 am

Excellent stuff Ian, looks amazing.
instagram: tymboooo

1980 series 1 RX7
1983 series 2 RX7
1975 RX3 Coupe
1959 VW Splitscreen Kombi "The Queen"
1971 VW Adventurewagen
1966 Porsche 912

re japi
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Location: Finland

Re: Not another barn find..... but almost

Post by re japi » Sun Jun 15, 2014 4:15 am

Yeah, she is beautiful!!! h[b[

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ian65
Posts: 5612
Joined: Wed Mar 30, 2011 12:11 am

Re: Not another barn find..... but almost

Post by ian65 » Sun Jun 15, 2014 8:34 am

Still undecided what to do about the front number plate.... I'll probably just use the metal frame thing to mount the plate for the mot but afterwards, I'd like something a bit more subtle ..... the front of the car looks so much cleaner without the plate stuck on the front of it. Not sure, how I'll preserve this look though unless I go with a stick on plate.

User Banned

Re: Not another barn find..... but almost

Post by User Banned » Sun Jun 15, 2014 8:48 am

h[b[ My God h[b[

that is one well maintained lawn!!!

Car looks good too! Looks like a beautiful match of clean car and clean engine and attention to detail!

What do those elfords go like? Does that engine differ internally from the standard s3 donk? And is that some kind of vented heat shield on the back of the turbo? Looks like a neat little set up.

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