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Project MH S4-MH500

Following text robbed from ScottishVAG... an advantage for being able to edit posts as long as you like.... edit... copy... paste
This is what endeded up happening to Fade2greys old car....remember that story??
Some will have seen before:

Ok so if youve read my post in 2006 which Ive resposted you'll know Ive dabbled with these cars before....  I love these engines. 2.7l 90 degree V6, 5 valve per cylinder, Bi-turbo, Variable valve timing , forged pistons as std… fantastic packaging (how many other manufacturers put bit turbo V engines in the front of saloon/estate cars!?) 6 speed Quattro no messing….. Ok pain in the arse to replace a turbo if it goes pop but obviously that doesn’t bother me!!
That car had about 360bhp and I remember I took out a few guys in it at an edinburgh meet.... was widely acclaimed …shortly after Simon (mcdubber) bought an S4  :thumbs:
So this post will probably make him jealous since he sold it last year......

Anyway I always wanted to do another.... but better.. so up came an opportunity of a good nick car with a snapped timing belt.... I bought it and started work.... Ive got a fair way through the project but need some motivation to push on.... Now I have a real deadline, I need to be able to drive it away on the 6th of june when I move house! so that include fresh MOT and insurance tax etc! I need a kick up the arse!!!!

Its a Red S4 avant and it was delivered to me in December. Nice full Black nappa leather interior with carbon trim. Even came with a load liner and a dog guard!!! Its got some nice features like Bose stereo(which while still not brilliant is miles better than crap audi std effort) cruise control and a nokia bluetooth kit too....Bonus!! :thumbs:

Ive been collecting bits as they’ve come up second hand so already had some nice bits before I even had the car!!!

and some big port NA heads
a pair of RS4 KO4s,
6 x 630ccm injectors
RS4 clutch
another custom exhaust is on the cards again…..
I came across a total bargain for suspension once again from Grizz on RS246…. Fully adjustable stasis kit and some Porsche Cayanne brakes. Using RS6 discs….. biggest damn brakes I’ve ever laid eyes one!!
Got some H&R anti roll bars to compliment the set up…..
I also decided to get hold of Mikey SSW mesh wheels, my need some matchingtyres for this fella though, I tried them on the car before I started all the work and took a couple of piccies:

Soooooo had to take apart the engine: found some mangled heads! 3 valves per cylinder were bent! But I have a spare engine so no big deal….

found some mangled heads! 3 valves per cylinder were bent! But I have a spare engine so no big deal….

the rest of the engine was in great nick, later I’ll give it a fresh timing belt kit and Ive got some good condition std heads to put on it so al in all that will be a nice 90k miler engine when its done….. BUT I had a spare engine from when I did terrys car that in even better nick, but after lying around in the garage for over a year it needed some help:
so on with striping and rebuilding the spare engine:

After some care and elbow grease…..

On to the bottom end….. drained the oil and took the sump off to inspect the general condition:

looked good! I wanted to clean the upper sump and get a proper look at the crank so didn’t stop there:

All looks good so I didn’t go any further…. I ordered the parts I needed, gaskets and such like (low compression fellas for some nice high boost)…..
heres one of the nice high flow heads to go on:

That’s as far as Ive got….. need a kick up the arse so I’ll put the core engine together tomorrow night as the wife is out…..

oh and incase you havent noticed as the name suggests the target is 500bhp....

Second part also robbed.....

Managed to get my finger out and finish the bottom end...
Upper sump resealed and torqued up, one of the two m10 allen headed bolts at the gearbox end snapped!!! Thankfully I was able to get it out other wise I would of had to take it off clean it up and reseal it again...!!

Cleaned the bottom part of he sump:

New bolts all round....

Also had the inside of the manifold welded, Im gonna flow then with my carbide bit to make sure it nice and even and free flowing.

Thanks for posting it here Mark.

How long until the engine should be running?

well that depends on my good mate Liam..... (esp engineering chap) as you know hes started making some trick bits for S4s etc.... I'm waiting on some more funky bits....  but probably a couple of weeks yet.... HAS to be on the road for 6th June tho as Im moving house!!

Trick bits?

Great pixs .. but which connect goes where ???

Hope you don't get stuck putting it back ...

You might like to read the following, why best to use Super unleaded ..once the engine is back in

Next installment!
OK, I bashed on a little more with the bottom end, New water pump, new thermostat , new timing belt pulleys.... just about ready for the heads to go on... All torqued up exactly after my lucky ascape a while ago!! See here:
how bottom end is looking:

So then... time to bash on with the heads... theres 2 outstanding things before the heads go on and thats make the manifolds fit as best as they can be and block off the extra ports that the NA and RS4 heads use but the S4s dont....
So manifold first, not quite done them both but just about there. I sent them back to my welding genius and he tigged the inside of the runners to the inside of the flange so thatthe welds are double up. However that leave a flow restriction so I started flowing them back...

So after welding (before they were welded they were just ends of the tubing exposed, not great for flow...)

So got out my flowing kit!!! stuck on some music.... then put my ear defenders on (good job I put the music on!)... and got cracking.

end result:

quite pleased with that....
now the NA heads have larger ports than the RS4 heads but even with that I think that I could in theory flow the heads a little but Im not going to as the heads are clean and ready to go on.... seee check the gasket out:

See how the ports are smaller than the gasket?
Now on the manifold:

difficult to see but the ports on the manifold are larger than the gasket.... better than the ridiculous restrictions that the standard manifold are!

Ive flowed a few bits and peices mainly alu and steel, but stainless is a lot harder and made short work of my trusty carbide bit!! ah well all in a good cause!!!

Anyway, I fitted the manifold up to the head and it wasnt a great fit. I needed to chamfer the edges of the manifold so there was adequate clearance from the head castings, it might be an NA head thing as the castings are different to the S4 heads....

crap pic, sorry bout that but you can see where I took the angle grinder too...

so was happy with that...

So on with the Head port blocking...
I was going thinking of using the audi technique of ramming a ball bearing in but wanted to get the right size.....
see the issue, std s4 on the right, NA on the left:

can you tell what going to happen with this somewhat "well used" s4 head and the suspicious looking angle grinder???

You guessed it!

So got the bearing out, measured it up at 11.3mm... can I find 11.3mm ball bearing anywhere?? nope... 11.1mm and 7/16 inch bearings but both too small by 0.2mm... hmm might need to hack the other head up or makea blanking plate.... still undecided on that....not sure I fancy taking a large hammer to my newly rebuild na heads!!!

so thats it for now, I also received some more goodies for the project....
A bosch motorsport fuel pump thats up to the job with appropriate basket and strainer (cheers to doug at MRC tuning for that!)

And some nice new bits from Liam/Kylie at ESP engineering, all looks pretty damn good to me! :thumbs:
Brace bar:

and I got the knob enscribed with  the audisport symbol BEFORE the titanium plating for the super subtle.... I quite like it...(I should have dusted it before I took the pics tho!!)

Well thats me for now.... hope to do more one night this week.... and at the weekend.... k:

Is this not the same post as on I can't see the point of this forum if its just a copy of

Guys just make up and run with

Confusionhunter has decided to post the same thing on what.  A number of us no longer use so he is keeping us up to date.

The only way I would have gone back to is if there had been a change of ownership but this forum is up and running nicely now so I see no point in returning.  The only downside is I have a cupboard full of clothing !

Forget the above - its been covered in the other post. My bad.

I know a few folk on RS246 that currently arent over here, so I wouldnt want those guys to miss out. I'm not aware of the reasons behind the "fallout" so cant really make a call on my RS246 usage...
I posted the same post on another 2 car forums I use too so I dont see the issue....

Made good progress today.... well actually I spent ages correcting a fluff up as it turns out the guy who built my heads had popped the inlet cams in the wrong heads.... of course I didn't spot that till I tried turning the engine over after Id put the heads on and set the timing up..... as you can imagine I wasnt overly pleased about that so I ended up spending hours correcting that rather than getting cracking....
Anyway.... still made some progress....
Threaded the heads as suggested and got some shrt M12 bolts in the ports....

Job done!

Got the manifold on and had to make modifications to the bracket that sits over the manifold. Left side was fine but well as you can see I had to cut away a fair chunk and then there was sod all room to get the bolt in....

So I made mini stud..... hmm not much room to get a nut on there:

I managed to get a stainless one on so the threads are a little stonger, as to get the nut on I had to put the stud in a couple more threads.... It doesnt look good but its on very tightly. I guess I could file the nut smaller and pull the stud a thread or so but I feel thats good enough as its not exactly crucial.

so I did make fair progress but not as much as I'd liked to have. Maybe do it tomorrow too...
SO... to summarise, heads are on timing belt is on, engine turns over nicely, Gaskets doubled up for low compression, cam covers on , plugs and coil packs in, some of the water pipes and auxilury electric water pump......

Next is the water pipes, inlet manifold, big injectors, and the turbos!
Then I might get it off the stand and get the flywheel, RS4 clutch and release bearing... mate it to the box then Im ready to start the custom downlpipes.....  pah.... easy!  

I managed to get a stainless one on so the threads are a little stonger, as to get the nut on I had to put the stud in a couple more threads.... It doesnt look good but its on very tightly. I guess I could file the nut smaller and pull the stud a thread or so but I feel thats good enough as its not exactly crucial.

Just a thought as I think there could be a chance that may work loose being so close to the manifold heat and vibration Etc.

Could use a half stainless lock nut - one of these...

Great build thread bye the way.

top project here and admire your guts for taking it on

quick question -- why N/A heads
is it a compression ratio thing?
and are the valves the same size?

NA heads have bigger ports than S4 and RS4 heads! Yep valves are the same size.
Hmm good call on the half width lock nut..... I shall go looking! I was just going to thread lock it but that seems a better option

looks like its coming together,using plain k04s?or spicy ones?

Ahhh! this post will answer your question...!

Well... I have prepped the turbos..... Plain Ko4s but I decided I would take the risk and flow the hotside. Its fairly obvious where the attention is required, as the gas comes out the turbine and smacks straight in to about 1.5mm lip on one side, not ideal, especially if you think about the rpm and amount of gas going through there.....
Lip is at the bottom...

SO  I under took a bit of a delicate operation as I did not want to dismantle the turbos....
I dug out my powerful vacuum cleaner again.  From flowing the manifold I knew that the suction on the hoover was good enough to leave no debris at all so I was happy enough to give it a bash with the turbos together...... funnily enough the suction was strong enough to spin the turbine....
Very peculiar flowing a spinning turbo! I suppose it made me happier that any particles would be deflected better is any did go the wrong way... I think it went well but I did skiff one of the blades annoyingly... ah well you live and learn you can see it in the pics..... I think it should be ok. If not.... bring on the garretts
Here was the result: each side....

I was happy enough that they were ok and I’d just made their life easier by a significant reduction in back pressure….

So on to the manifolds they go….. and this is where we find out why £1200 manifold are better than £150 ones!!
The left side was fine, but as I tighten up the turbo bolts on the right side one of the bolts felt a little peculiar as it got about 2/3s of the way down…. But it felt like the threads were sticking, which is not uncommon for exhaust parts because of the heat they get…. Tightened it down a bit more…. And it felt worse…. Hmm not happy with this…. Upon closer inspection the issue became apparent…..

Not good…. The was turbo pressing against the manifold, but not where you would want it…. This pushed the turbo at an angle and once I took the turbo off again I discovered the one bolt had cross threaded. It definitely started ok so my only explanation is the manifold…. Dammit!

Typically the tap and die kit I used on the heads was a mates and I have returned it, so this repair will need to wait…. Pants… I think I'll buy my own kit at the next Machine mart VAT free day!

you can just about see how much is taken off on the k04 hybrids

found a better pic

Wow..... that would take some time..... nice build... is that yours?
Im quite happy with my cheap rusty second hand turbos

ye just built it not long back,nothing wrong with old rusty turbos,got a box full interesting how you do with the 2.4 heads,manis and k04s,im changing to 2.4 heads tubulars and different turbos in several months,500bhp seems to be the limit on standard heads and manifolds

Well then!! Ive done lots more over the last few days so Ive got some catching up to do on this thread...... well to address the immediate problem I had, I got hold of the tap set sorted and the turbo thread without too much bother.... but I did have to skim the outside of the compressor housing and took a large hammer and a blow torch to the manifold to make some room....

about 2mm of clearance now:

Good stuff...

Next fit the new 630cc ish injectors and clean up the std inlet manifold. I know Im not making the most the big port head using the std S4 inlet manifold but I have a set of throttle bodies I may use.... just need to get the thing working for now....

To make the new injectors fit I did have to fabricate some little 8mm spacers so thatthe fuel rail sat correctly...

so the inlet manifold went on, put on some new timing belt covers on:

And I was happy with the overall set up of the exhuast manifolds:

To summarise each manifold head flange needed trimming, the left side needed heated and smacking to clear the turbo and I needed to remodel the pressure control hose to avoid the manifold. I also needed to elongate the hole on the RS4 inlet pipe so it could bolt to the head bracket correctly.

the right side neede far less, needed to trim the head bracket for the inlet pipe, and that was about it (and trim the head flange). I of course welded the inside and flowed both manifolds as seen in earlier posts.

so after all that, the engine was looking like an engine!

Pulled it off the engine stand:
and offered it up tp the box...

phew.... I have attached the flywheel and clutch and am just about to bolt up the box.... then its just aboutready to go in the car once I've fabricated some downpipes....
speaking of which Got some more trick bits from ESP engineering.... some flanges made to order for my cat replacement pipes: so I'll use these on my downpipes

should work well, i did something similar with my old S4....
and some nice leightweight alloy pulleys.... weigh a lot less than the std items!

So thats it..... you are all up to date now.

While I was in and around the engine I tried a few arty shots for a laugh....

can you guess where they were all taken from and what angles??

LOL This is like "engineering Porn" great stuff!

Well got the box on today just about ready to go in. Im going to replace the engine mounts with RS4 ones while the engine is out... (cheers Brett!) looking good:

I also fitted the esp pulleys, which fit well! nice!

And I chopped off the Downpipes, so I'm going to use them as templates to make bigger ones... using the flanges on the end of these downpipes I can fit the engine and make the rest of the exhuast later once the car is on the road....

thats it for now...
Next is the custom downpipes....

Great work looking forward to the next installment.

Hmmm started mocking up the Downpipes... this is one big ass exhuast!#
I drove up to in falkirk and spoke to Greydon aboutthe project and he was king enough to supply materials to do the downpipes myself and quoted a decent price for the rest of the exhaust once the car is up and running.
I specced a tiwn 3 inch simply because the 3 inch material is for some reason cheaper than 2.75! anyway..... It soon became apparent how big 3 inches is compared to the standard!

However the pre-cat chambers are nice and big so I am going to use the std top pipe....
Now, Ive removed the precats on std S4 downpipes before and its a royal painin the bum... but this time was a lot easier as I was able to get right into them as Id cut the Downpipe off.. before

after a big chisel and a big smack stick....

Soooo much easier.... Id consider cutting the precats off and welding the std pipe back on if I was doing std ones again... made it soo much easier.
I made the pipe sit flush and shoddily welded up the top part and tacked the rest together to get it all tigged up by Greydon. I'll grind away most of my iffy welding at the top....
but... this exhuast will flow some serious gas!

I have to say the flanges Liam at ESP engineering made are a perfect fit.... Im giving him a free plug as he still hasnt asked for money for them despite me hassling him! lol
Once they are done I'll knck up some steel braces to help the manifolds  support the turbo weight and then  the whole assembly can go back in the car.... with the exception of the FMIC and the oil cooler its all just a case of bolting it all back together!!!

This really is a quality post. I will be very interested to see the braces for the manifolds.

OK Doke, I have been busy, honest... Most things have gone well but not all... suffered a couple of minor setbacks for my deadline (under 2 weeks)....more on that later.
Anyway... on with the fabrication.... I'll not go into as much detail but basically it took some time to fabricate the Turbo brackets. The goal of these were to take some of the weight of the turbos so the manifolds aren't bearing the full weight which may increase the chances of them cracking. So the requirements are the need to help bear the weight, still allow a certain amount of flex (for heat expansion) and minimise heat transfer to the gearbox (which they are bolted to...) with nowt more than a few bits of metal lying about, an angle grinder, vice and a welder....... ! No probs...

Well first of all I noticed on a prefacelift manifold I had, already had a strange support bracket:

For those interested the part no. on it is : 078 253 034 BP... Only on one side though, the shape of the other manifold is such that its not that simple.
So of course I lopped that off and welded it on to the Tubular manifold:

Well to skip a couple of evenings messing about and trying different methods (and swinging off the downpipes to measure the flex). I came up with these...:

I made a video of the amount of flex there was before and after... but Im having software issues so that will have to wait for now... Sorry.... So next I needed to find some ceramic, phenolic or fibre washers and things to try and minimise the heat transfer. I tried a few places but couldnt find anything suitable. So I ended up chopping up the supplied manifold gaskets with the manifolds which look to be thin metal plates with some fibre in between, so I doubled it up got some longer bolts for the manifold to turbo flanges and bolted them all up after making minor adjustments to allow for the extra spacers (meaning the original holes etc were slightly out of line and adding the washers etc)....... and I painted them with black VHT (very high temp) paint......cutting up the gaskets...

Finished effort:

DPs were looking good after I had a chap tig weld everything up ( and replace some of my iffy welding...)

Another shot to show you how much more these will flow over std!:

I treated some parts of the downpipes with black VHT paint too... End result is an engine/transmission assembly ready to go in the car!!! woo hoo!

Looks the business from the side....I would say it certainly looks the part for 250bhp a side!

nice.... sooooooo to the point....

so the assembly is in the car.....

However remember I mentioned set backs?
setback number one: I wanted black silicone hoses for the FMIC and as such I have to wait for them to be made as all places I tried only keep blue.. how long? 4-5 weeks.... I'll be fitting the standard ICs then for the move!... this also means I cannot fit the oil cooler (as that was going to live where one of the side ICs live....) oh well not the end of the world.

Setback number 2. When bleeding the clutch system I tried getting the wife involved to pump the peddle, but it was taking ages.... so I got the pressure bleeder out. I didnt run high pressure and started to bleed the system. Suddenly the fluid reservoir burst and splattered brake fluid over the windscreen and roof!!! luckily I was pretty quick to mop it up and get a handy hose over the roof and windscreen..... what a pain in the butt.
However.... its a holiday weekend which means I wont get a replacement till tuesday and the clock is ticking.....  doh doh doh doh doh.....

bleeding the clutch can be an interesting experience

tell me about it... I wish I'd unbolted the slave cylinder from the gearbox....

you can get your arm down from the top,make sure the nipple is open enough and the hard line to slave cylinder is pushed right in,its a very tight fit

Excellent thread this Mark

You have been busy!  Looking good.

well..... after the last couple of minor setbacks I've hit a significant setback..... however it was half expected and planned for so its not the end of the world.
After securing the front and putting the bolts in but not tightened at the back of the assembly I turned it over a few times to circulate the fresh oil I was feeling the excitment of the light at the end of the tunnel!!     However Upon tightening up the back subframe bolts what I thought might happen did.......

The downpipes dont fit!  I uses the old downpipes and measurements of the tunnel to fab up the downpipes in the firstplace and I wanted to keep the bends etc to a minimum, however the top of the flexis were about half an inch too high and too far out from the gear box.    Damn....    Something that couldnt really have been spotted without fitting the engine. I could have test fitted the engine before welding but I took the risk thinking well a test fot means an extra fit and removal where I could fluke just one fit.... alas it didnt pay off..... soooooo

I removed the engine! I'm quite well practised at it now so only took a couple of hours. I was thankful I hadnt managed to bleed the clutch afterall otherwise I would have needed to do it again!!(or remove the slave cylinder instead).

Anyway, Managed to get a a 90 degree bend and cut it in half and suffered discomfort in cutting up my otherwise perfectly good downpipes! Anyway..... see the before and after pics! There should be plenty of clearance now which is good but the flexis have moved back a bit which will need to be corrected in the cats and bypass pipes.... No problem:

To top it off my angle grinder packed up so needed to hunt out a new one, so that stopped play for a couple of days. Because of the angles there are a couple of significant gaps in the down pipes that I needed to make infill plates for to make it as smooth as possible before giving back to my welder... which is tomorrows task.... hopefully he will be able to turn them around in time for the weekend.... then less than a week to move day..... cutting it close!

Anymore updates ??

SOOOOOOOOOOO close.... but im not going to make it.... sorry for the lack of updates, but the engine is in Downpipes are good front end is on BUT the cam timing is a little off on one side(to do with the variable valve timin tensioners on the inlet cam on one side..... so Im not happy with it, It turns out you need to set up one head slightly different to the other but the manual. Elsawin "forgets" to mention it.....  moving on friday so that dam things gonna get towed..... apparently a common thing to happen, but Good old Doug from MRC gave me a nice picture that illustrated the issue nicely.... Engine was sounding sweet for the few minutes it ran well!!! Loud as  there was only the downpipes on!!

other than that it was a case of the exhuast bumper headlights and MOT!!! Need to PACK!!! lol I'll be offline for a bit as I cant take my cable service with me and good old BT say beacause Im transferring my number the ealiest I can get my landline and broadband is something like the 23rd of June!

BT will have meant 2009 too.

Hoorah for BT...making the possible impossible.

BT. Bloody terrible

Back online yet ? any updates ??

just back on line, any updates are related to painting decorating, messy garages and new kitchens!!! S4 hasnt been looked at in a month!
I have to say Adam I am quite mesmorised by your avatar!!!

me toooo?

not happy......
OK..... well the car still doesnt run...... yet all the timing is spot on..... I did a compression test and one of the cylinder on the opposite side from the previous issue has a big fat zero for compression.... did a leak down test and its pissing out the exhuast....... it would appear one of the exhuast valves is stuck..... so that means Im back to square one.....
As you can imaging I paid someone to rebuild these fekin heads so theyd be good to go..... Im seriously unchuffed.
Not impressed.....

bad luck man ...

I am just praying mine starts ok and I dont have these kind of problems ...

confusionhunter wrote:
SOOOOOOOOOOO close.... but im not going to make it.... sorry for the lack of updates, but the engine is in Downpipes are good front end is on BUT the cam timing is a little off on one side(to do with the variable valve timin tensioners on the inlet cam on one side..... so Im not happy with it, It turns out you need to set up one head slightly different to the other but the manual. Elsawin "forgets" to mention it.....  moving on friday so that dam things gonna get towed..... apparently a common thing to happen, but Good old Doug from MRC gave me a nice picture that illustrated the issue nicely.... Engine was sounding sweet for the few minutes it ran well!!! Loud as  there was only the downpipes on!!

other than that it was a case of the exhuast bumper headlights and MOT!!! Need to PACK!!! lol I'll be offline for a bit as I cant take my cable service with me and good old BT say beacause Im transferring my number the ealiest I can get my landline and broadband is something like the 23rd of June!

I've just put my cams back in after changing the VVT gaskets.... you mean the chain timing is different for both sides? I thought it was 16 links as per ELSA? What info did Doug give you? Could have done with knowing this two days ago! Any info appreciated....


mikey-s wrote:
I've just put my cams back in after changing the VVT gaskets.... you mean the chain timing is different for both sides? I thought it was 16 links as per ELSA? What info did Doug give you? Could have done with knowing this two days ago! Any info appreciated....


I did them as you said, 16 links, but made sure they where lined up (more or less, a little out, but less than a link) with the timing marks. I did a couple of rotations to make sure they stayed correct.

Also, the exhaust cams are the same, but the inlet cams timing positions are different for each side.

AGB (B5 S4).

There is a mark on the chain sprocket and a mark on the bearing caps, these all line up correctly. The only reason I can see for setting them up differently is the postions of the adjusters/actuators.. after rotating the engine to TDC one of the adjusters is positioned all the way up and the other one is all the way down... due to which side if the chain is under tension.


mikey-s wrote:
AGB (B5 S4). There is a mark on the chain sprocket and a mark on the bearing caps, these all line up correctly. The only reason I can see for setting them up differently is the postions of the adjusters/actuators.. after rotating the engine to TDC one of the adjusters is positioned all the way up and the other one is all the way down... due to the which side if the chain is under tension.

MRC helped me with this one, I believe at TDC the inlet cam lobs near the timing markers point in towards the centre of the engine, but don't quote me on that ... if they are around the wrong way I believe you will get valve/piston strike, so if its tuning over by hand its probably right, but I would say worth checking with an expect, you don't want to crank it up and find out its wrong!!!

I think I found at my TDC both chains were under tension, one was about to spring out, but still under tension when checking the markings ...

If you rotate the engine clockwise then you will find one chain has tension on the top and one chain has tension on the bottom, but thinking about it now it probably won't make any difference because I guess the timing adjusters may just work in opposite directions to shift the timing, ie one moves up and the other moves down. It's just a guess and I could be wrong.... it has been known!


Right some more updates, I have just been doing bits bit by bit....
It was said to me by someone I trust that its worth running the car at idle to warm it up so the oil got up to rtemp and filled the hydraluc tappets etc etc... I was a bit dubous but willing to try anything at this rate! so I drained the petrol as it was a fair old age and while the tank was empty I fitted the bosh motorsport fuel pump as its submerged in the tank..... bigg faff to get that in.... and a long story short after electrical checks aand reversing polarities etc it turns out the pump wasd faulty!!! so back in the the std one!! FFS!!

Anyway Before I warmed i the car up I did a compression test, bank one was 140psi, 140 , 0 (!) bank 2: 90, 60 90.
no to me that seems like the valves havent even been ground to the seats.... hence my initial suspiscion of the pish job on the heads..... on the 0 comp cylinder and set to TDC with valves closed and I blew down the spark plug hole and it came out the exhuast.... took the cam cover off and one of the tappets was loose...... sticky valve it would seem...

Anyway I managed to get the car running and it sounded like a bag of bolt but after 15 minutes of noisy idle on friday night got oil up to temp..... still running crap.

Last night I did another compression test. Bank one the same : 140, 140, 0. Bank 2: 90, 0(!!), 90...... SO it got WORSE!
Performed the same test as before and this time out the inlet! SO..... I can see the inlet valves through the inlet port so I took the inlet manifold off.......

And after squirting some WD40 down...... lo and behole the middle inlet valve isnt seating properly, doesnt appear to be bent..... I'll take a pic......

So it would appear my hunch of crapply built heads it correct..... ARRGHGHGHH!!!!! Back to square one like I was in december, Ive done all this work and STILL have an S4 with a knackered engine.....

So I have to take the engine out regardless..... Im tempted to put the std engine back in and flog it but this is my opportunity to own the cheapest 500bhp monster available!!
Also once Ive got the heads do I give them back to the same guy to rectify? I think I will because If I give to anyone else I have no more recourse and I simply dont have the tools to dothe 5v cylinder heads..... hmmm.....#
Ive got some time off due to me so may leave it a montha and deal with it then.......
very very cheesed.....

oh.... and drivers side head has 16 links exactly as per elsawin but passenger side (on a RHD car) cant do 16 as the teeth are slightly misalligned tso it can only be 16.5 or 15.5 teeth...... its 15.5 teeth! but doug says if you set up to 16,5 it wont damage the engine but is a pain in the ass to fix..... I have to pull off the timing belt etc to get the inlet cam out enough to move if one tooth round.

The tensioers, yes one should be tensioned up and the other down, all to do with the direction of the engine you see....

I feel your pain Mark.  Hope you get it sorted soon.

You don't have to pull off the timing belt to fix the chain timing... just lift out the inlet cam complete with the tensioner. It works.. I done mine a few weeks ago.

Don't forget to use the tool to compress the tensioner before you lift it out.

I know it was possible but it was very tight I just cound get the angle, I couldnt move the tensioner enough without removing the back timing belt cover(which meant removing pulley).
I spent move time trying to move it wothout touching the timing belt that it took to reomve and refit the timing belt!

Ahh I see! When I altered the chain timing (lifting inlet cam only) I had the pulleys and back timing covers off because I was replacing seals.

sorry for my shocking typing last night...!

Any more progress on this Mark?

nah, Ive probably been avoiding it, I was going to take the engine out on saturday butthe garage /tools are still a total state, so I felt me time would be better spent putting in lighting and tidying the garage so I have a decent area to work in....
sigh..... I'll get there.... just not looking forward to it so Im probably dragging my heels a bit...

confusionhunter wrote:
sigh..... I'll get there.... just not looking forward to it so Im probably dragging my heels a bit...

Keep the faith man! once you get back into it you will be fine, and just think of the end result!  

Any updates with the project?  Just curious...

Yep!!!! I did  it, Me and a mate on tuesday! Ripped the damn thing out.... One sticky valve and a dozen valve not seating correctly...... Took them back to the guy who said hed sort it. Ive asked him to vaccum test all the valves, as I want 140 across the bpard or I'll be going nuts!

will let you know what happens when I get them back!!

Right..... Appparently.... When the exhuast valve was fitted the valve spring wasnt seated correctly..... this eventually but lateral pressure on the top of the valve and SNAPPED the top of the valve off therefore it was just floating around in there....!

Apparently Im very lucky that the valve didnt come apart and mash up my engine and heads.... I dont feel very F*&kin lucky cos if the heads had been rebuilt properly in the first place I A: wouldn't have had the issue and B) no re-rebuild costs and gaskets etc etc.... It was a nasty and awkward conversation picking them up..... but its done now.

I had asked for every valve to be tested before I got them back, the heads were clinically clean and looked much better..... Worrying because they looked better than when I got them the first time round (see pics page 1 or 2).

So..... Last week I fitted the heads, but there was no wayI was fitting the engine without testing it....  I checked the calve timing (which was a tooth out) and re torqued all the cam bolts as last tim some of them were finger tight, So I made up a rig, connected the starter motor and bettery and did some compression tests.....

THANKFULLY all the compressions were good, number 3 was a little down but thats because thats the one that had a brand spanking new valve fitted and it has never been run, so I'll pressure test that one again once its done some miles, but its not down enough to worry about. Its not often engines are exactly the same anyway as the tolerances are quite a lot...

Anyway the upshot is I now appear to have a good engine to fit back into the car..... Ive only had the car a year now..... its been six month since I fired the damn thing since the first rebuild.....

Engine in and running for christmas then?


Good news

Are you going to ask the company that failed to rebuild your heads for a contribution to what they've cost you for failing to do their job?

well... its a very long and complicated story, but the bottom line is... no. I've had it with trying to sort it out, I just want the car going and producing good power.... in a way they have already contributed in doing more work than I paid them to do.

I read vipers thread start to finish earlier on and after I was feeling quite enthused for my own project!!! So I fitted the exhuast manifolds, coils, timing belt covers etc....

Just the inlet manifold and downpipes and its ready to go back in the car.... again!

Ive had the car just over a year now and its done about 5 miles.... and that was towed, so Id realy like to get it going. The local Teco started selling 99 and everything!!!

I'm afraid I must apologise for avid readers of this thread! Ive been crap at updating it.

It runs and I have video evidence....

Ive made some cracking progress.... so much so that I was keen and booked an MOT for monday!
However after doing all my checks I ran a vagcom scan and while the engine has no faults! (woohoo) the ABS ECU is totally gubbed..... doh.

So I ordered a remanufactured one already!(£125 ouch) so once thats fitted, Ive welded up the std exhuast (going to get mot before custom exhuast and FMIC)....... cleaned up the brakes and then I'll be ready to rock!

Good man!! get the video up!

Good luck for Monday mate, I am so lucky to not have to worry about MOT's!!

Sweet, looking forward to the video! oh and MERRY CHRISTMAS!

Well done that man!

I know.... I got it running with nothing but the downpipes on so its very loud!
Problem is I upgraded my computer to vista and the  video can software isnt compabitle.... so I downloaded the latestd version that works on vista but doesnt work va USB so I oprdered a firewire cable.... what hassle!
Still waiting on it!
Merry Xmas....  Which other SRS commited individuals are avoiding the family on here then?

me . its rubbish

me too.

Me, too. The mrs is in the kitchen cooking and I'm in the living room drinking

me too, afternoon ere, kids upstairs xbox 360 under age booze and mates, we are waitin to go out later - full of turkey and champagne!

Ive ad my share of frustration with the S4, but I raise my glass to Mark,  mate fix it & rip it, you deserve some good luck, wait for the exit of that first corner full power and 500hp, twisting, planted and pulling your arms off! you know after a few of those the pain will fade away.  Cheers mate, Merry Xmas.

Managed to get the vid up.... note the power steering pump rattling away....  sounds good with no exhausts!

it does, sounds even better when under load, blitzing up and down the roads.

well it left the drive under its own steam tonight! Straight back in again though and after it was warmed up it was running much nicer. Just need to replace the PAS pump now and bleed the clutch again (not fully disengaging) and its ready for an MOT!!!! Woo hoo!
Then its time for the final phases of the suspension brakes upgrade which I already have and the FMIC and exhuast..... then we'll be cooking!

Its been a while since Ive done an update so I'll try and brong folks up to date. I have actually been trying to sort a few things out, like the house garage, cars etc etc so I've been online less over the last couple of months... ok where was I....

OK I havent really covered the last few happenings in any detail so here we go
I have been concentrating on the S4 a bit more recently but I'll cover some old ground first.
Dont think I showed the final downpipes....

When I moved house I resorted to getting a helper another S4!!... saloon towing an avant nice....!!

Ok fault with the Head... I'll be quick because I still get angry about this especially when I think about the time and money put into this..... Apparently the exhuast valve spring was fitted incorrectly applying a lateral force on the valve.... this bent and broke the top of the valve off which then failed to return and the piston shoved it back up again into its seat.....I have to say that I am amazed that the engine wasnt a complete mess.....
Something Wrong here then!!

check out the valve...

2 bends and a break!!! How lucky??

The head was fine no marks, the piston did have a couple of marks which sanded out ok. so I had the valve and guide replaced. As for the other crap compressions I was told that the tappets had "too much oil" in them that didnt allow some of the valve to close properly..... I dont understand how this can happen when heads have been sitting about for so long, but there you go. The tappets were drained and heads cleaned up nicely and as before they looked good.

I refitted the heads but not wanting to go through the same pain as before I did a compression test on the garage floor using polo from the trusty polo.....

Compressions were good so I went ahead and finished the engine install.... Again!
the mission in hand!!

As you saw from the You tube clip I got the car running without too many problems.

Since then I have made up the cat pipes and welded up the flanges I had to fit the 3 inch downpipes to the std twin 2.25 std exhuast! Obvioulsy that will be replce by a custom effort. For now I have refitted the standard intercoolers as well so I can get an MOT and worry about the FMIC later.

I refitted the Bosch motorsport fuel pump as the first one didnt work and that up and running well. some faffing about with solder joints but other that that , that went smoothly. So once its mapped I can make full use of the giant 630cc injectors.

After a couple of warm ups in the engine (much easier to do when its not deafening!) the engine was running more smoothl, som my confidence is building. However it soon became apparent that the power steering needed some attension. The PAS pump is screaming its head off and seems to be getting worse. New ones are about £200 quid so I'm going to check the system for leaks and replace the fluid and see if that helps. Cheapest place I have found that recondition them is £125 plus VAT.  Found a second hand one too but just want to make sure this one is proper goosed!

The alloy gearbox brace bar... bar I need to fit properly, cos the downpipes are so damn big I had to grind some bits off so it all bolts together properly.... you can see the clearance issue here:

ABS..... Well as you know once everything seemed to be working there was an outstanding ABS ECU error. It wouldnt even talk to VAGCOM, so after a bit of digging I found out that it quite common for them to simply go pop! So I had that reconned with 2 year warrenty, had thet refitted which has solved the problem.

I ran a full VAG-com scan and there are now no faults..... hurrah!

I've ordered some headlight bracket repairs to afix the broken brackets so headlights are secured, although I have found some cheap facelift headlights to make the front end look a little newer (headlight and indicators in one peice).

I sold the SSW meshs I orginally had as I decided Id prefer an OEM look. It was my brither in law that bought them and they look awsome on his S4 check it out.....!

after my brother in law messing about with various grilles some tasteful some clearly not and some for a laugh ( the decepticon badged one for example!) He finally settled on the ideal IMHO, black surround and chrome Audi badge..... i think its looking gooooood!

So I managed to get myself some SPlit new 19 inch B7 RS4 reps AND some very good tyres. I managed to get 4 R8 front tyres for 60 quid a corner..... ! They are part worns but Pirelli P zer rosso, which i think usually are 200 a corner! I get them this week so will get the tyres fitted on ASAP.

Actually last weekend Paul came out a rolled the front arches for me (the Avants seem to have no lip at all on the back!). I decided to clean up all the brakes and run the MOT on std suspension and brakes etc...
But while the wheels and arch liners were off I test fitted up one of the calipers. I forgot how big theese Cayanne brakes were! The small disc in this pic is the S4 one which is 330mm!!!

Biggest damn brakes I've ever seen! like something off a truck!
So here is a glipse of the brake wheel set up.... I have to say It got me very excited so Im contemplating just fitting all the suspension/wheels/brakes etc before the MOT!!!

I need to fit a boost guage, Ive done it before in the brother in laws and I had fitted it in one of the vents. Luckily I still have a spare vent from the ones I got from that scrappy to do that one....So thats on the jobs list post MOT.
As for the stereo, Im just going to run the STd Stereo for now, although I was looking at th removing the BOSE equalisation by "snipping" the Bose wire. My Brother in law has done this ( I told him to do it as an experiment!) and he says it improves things alot.... so I'll give that a whirl too!

Seats.... They are in need of some help... The leather is very dry and needs some treatment. I have some wax but thats more like amaintenance and waterprrover.... I need a moisturiser and conditioner! I remember in my biking days it was vital to keep the leather supple, so anyone got any product reccomendations? Or I'll just pop to the local biker shop for some....Got a couple CG locks I got at UD last year to fit too!

So jobs lists Pre mot is:
Modify and attach Gbox Brace bar
Fix headlights/attach bumper
sort PAS pump somehow
Possibly fit suspension/brakes wheels and tyres.
Swap coolant
Bleed clutch again (not fully disengaging)

Post MOT
Fit rear uprates ARB
Fit Oil cooler
Custom Exhuast
Have fun!
Maybe replace Driver information IS display as its on the way out
Then maybe some Intake mods N249 valve etc etc....

So should be done in another year or so!!!

Good write up  

Liquid leather should sort your seats.

I want some downpipes like yours! Very nice

This is a serious project, just sat through and read it all, stunning work! Are you an engineer by trade or is this all self taught?

Slightly off topic, but did you or any of your friends go to Brunel University?

Tom_S4 wrote:
This is a serious project, just sat through and read it all, stunning work! Are you an engineer by trade or is this all self taught?

Slightly off topic, but did you or any of your friends go to Brunel University?

LOL Marks new sig I think.

He is a desk jockey but he is a very talented bloke and is one of those annoying chaps who, what ever he does he turns out to be fecking amazing at it. May I add that is only with the aid of an angle grinder and a welder    

Wait untill you see his space frame project with carbon skin  

lol... did I over pay you for some goods that I have forgotten about or something??

Im an IT geek for a living.... just been messing about with cars for many years.... that it really, Dont even know where that uni is let alone go to it! sorry!

Meant to add in a pic of my new gear knob from ESP....

Good work!!  That broken valve brings a chill to your heart.    I'm very pleased it turned out as well as it did for you, there's not a lot of difference between that valve and one where the head falls off.  Only the outcome changes.

Nice downpipes BTW!!  You aren't going to start manufacturing them on the side are you?

Could you spill the beans on who can recon the PS pump for 125?

i guess on reflection i can see how luvky i was, but io was so damn peed off at the time i couldn't fully appreciate how much worse it could have been....

nah, never want to see downpipes again!!! Sihould be easy for someone with a tig welder and a jig to make these though I only need 2 90 deg mandrel bends and a sgort lengthr of 3 inch pipe.... flanges from ESP.... bendy bits from a local custom exhaust place..

i just did a serach on power steering pumps on google and i pulled out three companies, 2 were 150 plus vat the other was 125 cant plus vat.

Wheels, Tyres, Brakes and Suspension all on, just need to fit the rear anti roll bar to finish the chassis off and I have some 2nd hand B5 RS4 Rear brakes to go on too.

here is how its looking, front bumper isnt on properly yet, as I still have the Power steering pump to sort before MOT time......

I actually think it needs to be lower, didnt get my arches rolled for nothing!!! so may need to whip out the C spanners!

And just for a special treat.... this is through a standard exhaust with the 3 inch straight through downpipes and main cats in place..... wonder how it will sound through a proper exhuast!

nearly there dude

Very nearly there! Well done mate

Yes definitely needs to be lower... careful of your downpipes tho!!

Bit of t cut n it'll be looking awesome once again.

well the ESP gearbox brace is still the lowest part of the car so downpipes shouldn't be the issue.....

oh yeah.... mine's had a beating already!!! I've heard its cries of pain a few times!

Just sat and read the whole thread. amazing! well done!

OK..... Got some news on a few fronts! Following a good news bad news kind of pattern on a few fronts with a biggy at the end, which is the reason Ive been keeping quiet as I deal with it mentally!

Well.... where do I start.

Good news: No fault codes in the engine, Stereo is working better now Ive snipped the bose wire (creating a different EQ from a the rubbish Bose one, I can actually hear the front tweeters now..... Bluetooth kit is sorted (was suffering some power issues)
Bad news: The heated seats dont work and it isnt a fuse As I was working on the stereo I scratched the dash surrounding the stereo. While not the end of the world, its really irritating, so may cover in carbon or paint or find a replacement (anyone have a decent stereo surround kicking around?)

Boost Gauge:
Good news: Fitted one, its in the usual dash vent, It works it lights up. I took  pics to do a guide at some point....
Bad news....It has a chrome surround which doesnt match anything else....I  as I was masking it up I placed in on a shelf to get more tape and the damn thing rolled off the shelf and dented the surround...Doh, I'll paint it later I just decided to fit it for now and tart  it up later

Cooling system:
Good news: Coolant fixed the coolant level sender
Bad news: There is a water leak somewhere as the level goes down over time. I suspect its the heater matrix as when the car has been run and then turned off the interior steams up and there is a drip coming from around the drivers side downpipe..

And the Biggies:
Good News: The damn thing has an MOT!!!!! Hurrah! Advisory on a couple of bushes which I need to change, but all in all it was ok. Big thanks to my mate who collected the car MOTd it and returned it without my involvement. Although he has trouble starting it because the Emergency map runs too rich when cold which floods the engine ( may be down to a temperature sender of simply cos its an emergency map to work with big injectors) and because of the bad news:
BAD News..... Cylinder no5 is being a royal pain in the ar$e...... I have never in my life experienced such a mechanical mystery Let me explain....... Now if you read a page back or so you'll remember me cursing and swearing at the fact I had to pull the engine as it seemed the head rebuilder did a pants job. If you also remember one of the two cylinders that read a big fat zero one was number 3 down to a knacked exhaust valve down to incorrect fitting and the other big fat ZERO was number 5. My diagnosis at that time was that the middle inlet valve was seeping badly. SO when I pulled the engine for the second time I made the head man aware of the issues.

Now....The head man is a complex story. Basically I had flow testing work done by one company,  I wasn't happy with the state of the head when they were reassembled (werent even that clean), So I started dealing with the second company that the first one sub contracted some of the work to anyway as it now turns out. However they heads were there for about 18 months and because cleaning them and checking them took so long they decided not to charge me for the work..... There in lies the issue of not having any recompense for the second engine pull as I didn't actually pay them anything. I wish I had! In turns out the inlet cams were in the wrong head too but managed to fix that and the tooth out problem my self... already defeating the point of getting someone else to build the heads!!! But because of the erroneous nature of who did what I let that drop.

When I had the head done for the second time to fix the faults after the second engine pull, the dodgy valve was replaced. and all the valves reseated and then VACUUM TESTED as I had asked. I told them about the middle inlet valve on No 5 but turns out the valve was straight and sealed fine. They wanted to charge me 100 quid for the exhaust valve work (as it was the first company that had done the exhaust valves and they did not disassemble the exhaust cams the first time round) and the rest of the 300 labour was free. I wasn't happy about that given the cost to met to pull the engine so the rest was waived grudgingly. Still the right result in my opinion but I can see their point of view.... Which was my dilemma at the time.
Now, these heads have been vacuum tested. So when I fitted the heads I did a compression test on floor of my garage before I fitted the engine to the car. They were all good. I even took photos of the readings so If I ever come to sell the engine/car I have proof that the engine is top condition!

So... I pressed on. As you know engine starts... runs well sounds great, except when its cold. Firstly there is too much fuel when cold so its prone to flooding until I get the map sorted, but even when it was running it wasn't great. I did compression tests all round when stone cold and they were all really good at 140psi (low compression engine remember) except number 5 which was at about 10psi!! WTF!??!? But its runs well when warm..... SO I warm it up, sounds good again.... do another test and its up to 90 PSi....ok thats weird..... Speak to Doug and second head company, no one has a clue whats going on..... But via the process of elimination I change the tappets on the inlet side with Std S4 ones out of the original heads form the car, strongly suspecting the middle inlet valve. Now this gets even weirder......I run the car after that to get the oil up and do a pressure test...... 120psi..... Ooooo almost cracked it I thought..... I wait 5 mins..... Do it again..... 50Psi..... *&%$ I dont believe it.....  OK..... well lets see if I can get an MOT..... SO thats another story involving my very good friend who could MOT it without me getting it insured and taxed legally.

On that point, Its not a dodgy MOT!!! For example. One of the indicators holding mechanism is broken. I dont care because I have facelift headlight Im going to fit later anyway. So I use selotape to hold it in place......Now I though I did a great job as you can hardly see it no air bubbles etc.... And the tape on the indicators appears as an advisory !!!! Top job!

So Before hand I get a gas analyser on it and aside from the obvious quirk the engine is running very well...... Plus it might be that a good 30 mile run to the MOT test centre and back might help the valves seat that bit better. I mean the car runs sweet when its warm.... Anyway, Car passed its MOT yesterday, and reports are that the car runs very well and really comes on song about 3 k revs and the engine "shouts" at you!!

SO I try another comp test yesterday after its run after its cool and it comes up 50psi..... Damn..... I shove some oil in just to check its not rings related.... no difference.....

Thats where I am now....... So After humming and hawing about insuring and taxing to get the exhaust done and stuff and then fixing it or simply pulling the engine out again I think I'll just do the latter.I little birdie tells me you can get the passenger side head off without an engine pull...! Anyway, first things first Need to do some leak testing and find out if it inlet of exhaust...... then progress from there........

Any chance the springs under the piston rings (or maybe the rings themselves) could be damaged in cylinder 5?

ScottR wrote:
Any chance the springs under the piston rings (or maybe the rings themselves) could be damaged in cylinder 5?

or the gaps lined up?

I know that mine was smoking for weeks after my rebuild (on overrun), but then eventally it just stopped ... Doug though it could have been a ring that was still compressed and eventually "popped" out ... mind you, you had compression at one point?

Sounds like a ring to me, and that tappet change was just a red herring.  (them springs on the bottom are just scraper rings)

have you done a wet leakdown test?


" SO I try another comp test yesterday after its run after its cool and it comes up 50psi..... Damn..... I shove some oil in just to check its not rings related.... no difference..... "

Wet comp test tried em, no difference. I havent had the pistons out this block, and on two occasions its produced good pressure...... No blue smoke or white smoke and new gaskets.... so thats to me is pointing at the I say mechanical mystery!!

My strongest suspect is still the middle inlet valve... But I still need to do a proper leak down test, see where we go from there....

I was thinking along the same lines as viperbl on this on the ring allignment or as i said on the svag forum possibly the gaps.

hmm just a thought here, not even sure it applies to these engines, but is it possible the retainer needs shimming? do pressure/vacuum tests give the same result? Forum Index -> Projects and Builds Page 1, 2  Next
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