a280z thanks for the support man.
Dang. Bad start of the weekend.
But why keep driving with a damaged gasket, and why a new engine ?
I was driving on the damaged gasket because it was a minor leak. Not enough to mix oil with water, not enough to show up all of the time, not great loss of coolant, and....
...I had a new small block that was going to go in the car anyway.
Understand that the LE5 (2.4L NA) in my car was not optimized for boost from the factory. The 10.4:1 compression is too high to be optimal for a turbocharged application. It is the main thing that holds back the performance of a boosted 2.4. The 2.0 Redline is lower at 9.2:1. This is why you can throw 25 psi of boost at an LNF (2.0 turbo engine in the Redline) and I gently popped a head gasket at 15 psi. I lowered it back down to 10 after the initial lift but I knew that my time was limited. A hard acceleration out of a corner yesterday was the last straw.
The new engine was on order before I had any issue with the current engine as I wanted more than the 266whp I currently had (ask skersfan, I'm not right in the head). It has forged 8.8:1 compression pistons, forged rods, ARP head studs, ARP timing hardware, new timing chains, balanced rotating assembly, balance shafts deleted, WR-4 turbo, and larger radiator. This was the initial plan. While waiting for a time when my mechanic could install it, he talked about decking the head on my current engine before putting it on the small block I had ordered.
At this time, I figured if I'm going to DECK it ANYWAY (anyone who has ever modified the car knows this phrase in some form)...why not do it right...so I bought a new head and sent it off for +1mm valves on the intake and exhaust, harder single springs, titanium retainers, and port and polish work. While this head was being worked on, I discovered that the ECM in the 2.4 may be flex fuel capable...so I'll be wiring in the proper GM sensor with the engine out too.
While waiting for the head, the car started having starting issues I traced back to bad terminal connectors at the battery...so I yesterday morning I ordered new cables since the head should be done today and I'm picking it up tomorrow...all this before the head gasket full failure.
So the new engine will hold a lot more power and produce a lot more power thanks to the forged internals, head work, and new turbo. That was the point of the whole build. The gasket failure just happened at the best time it could have happened. The entire engine build was to address the compression issue and strength of the engine for the larger turbo. This turbo is designed for the 2.0 (but I basically have a 2.0 turbo on my 2.4 so it's a direct bolt on for my setup) and good for up to 600 bhp on that platform. I am shooting for 450-500 whp on mine. This is why I'm looking into the Flex Fuel capability to take advantage of the couple of E85 stations near me.
I don't know if I can make it out to Curtis's place this weekend @skersfan
...but next weekend for sure. Do you know if he'll be there around then?
So sorry to hear...
Thanks Mike but no worries...the engine swap was already part of the plan and with it breaking so close to home it was a real godsend. The only way this timing could have been more perfect is if it happened about two weeks later when the new engine was assembled and ready to go in.