Engine Work Part 2: Another snag

Ok, so from part 1 of the engine build, you already know we ended up with two potential cars as donors for this build. We decided on the cheaper 12A bridgeport route over the 13B EFI route. With the engine on the stand and ready for teardown, work got start pretty quickly. Just a few pics during the process, but I’m working editing the teardown video together so you can see the whole process (if you’re into that sort of boring stuff)…


Unfortunately, during teardown, the 12A bridgeport idea may have proved fruitless after all. The engine was actually one of the most difficult to take apart. It just had no interest in separating. Carbon EVERYWHERE. Upon clean up, we found what we feared most, we discovered this:


This was on the rear housing, both top and bottom of the housing. Probably a good 25% of the housing was damaged. There are services out there that will resurface these flaking housings but it’s just not in the budget for now.

For those not in the rotary community, you’re probably not aware but 12A housings went out of production some years ago and good used cores are hard to come by for a value price. We had to call in some favors to find extra housings and work some money magic, but in the end, we had two new (to us) housings ready to prep and clean.

We soaked the “new” housings in the bath for a few days, but again, luck wasn’t on our side and this is what we found after a quick check:


That is the beginning of a coolant jacket collapsing. We “could” have done a cheap repair and slapped it together, but this wasn’t going to last very long and I’d hate to get to the challenge and have the engine die in the process. Don’t want to give the GRM editors something bad to write about!

So again, no good housings. We now have four perfectly good paper weights! What does this leave us with? Well, we still have the other 13B donor car we picked up in the deal ($250) and we know of another good running stock ported 12A we can get on the cheap and just drop right in. At this point, it looks like we’ll have to sell off some things from the RX3 and the parts cars we bought for the project in order to recoupe some funds.

Stay tuned…

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