Dolphin grey tdi timing belt failure?

Howey

Member
Howdy folks

Seen a 54 plate not much info at the moment other than would accept £350 including delivery to my drive

Guessing belt failure always results in bend valves??

Tbh not really in a position to buy but boy am a salavating but my heads saying £250 would be the most to pay to make the project financially viable??

Requested full reg to make a more "informed" decision
Any thoughts peeps?
Cheers
Howey
 

Rusty911

A2OC Donor
Depends on the rest of the car: condition, spec, colour, history, hpi status. Would you be DIY'ing it. Doing to keep, doing to sell?

I've not done one, but the 1.9 version bends valves but pistons and rods usually are O.K. but I would imagine some of that would depend on the story of the failure: high revs will obviously be (even) worse than low.

The risk you run is you do all the work and find, actually, a rod WAS bent and you now have low compression somewhere.

If it's an otherwise lovely car and you're DIY'ing, it could well be worth a punt. If there are other issues potentially or if you were contemplating putting into a garage, it might not be worth the hassle. Sometimes the actual repair can go O.K., you put the car back on the road only to find other issues (like a clutch / flywheel or whatever) so that goes into your 'risk bucket' on an otherwise unknown car. Check out MOT history to see how well looked after a car has been.

Also: 'includes delivery'? Is it a trader? Then run a mile, they know something they're not telling you, however good the story might be. If you know the car and seller though, all the better.
 

Howey

Member
Yeah would really need it to be a minter

Would be doing it for the love and keeping i suppose but on a budget fix, doing the work myself, but dont really have the time but at the same time hate the thought a (potentially) sweet vehicle could destroyed! Thats a lot of buts!!

The buy looks like he buys to break, he said make an offer, i said £200 due to the recovery and fixing costs he said hes looking for £350 but could deliver (guessing at no/minima cost)

I dont know, suppose i just wondered what a scrap A2 is worth and if i could justify it to myself (and even worse the mrs lol!!)
 

Rusty911

A2OC Donor
Hmm, I'd still want the above questions answered: you can do some remotely: HPi (actually, use Mycarcheck, tick the £1.99 service which is excellent. Only advantage of the £9.99 one is it checks outstanding finance, which we're not worried by on our cars). MOT History (just Google it and make sure it's the .Gov site).

My hunch is: there will be other issues but if basically clean and you're pretty handy, have the space, can afford the time and it'll be a keeper, it MIGHT just be worth doing.

Even so, allow for: G13 coolant, full timing belt kit with water pump, head-gasket set, I don't know about head studs? Manifold seals? Exhaust seals? Oil and filter, valves (let's say half of them), allow for a head skim or at least know you can get it checked. You might want to do the oil pump / balancer chain set and tensioner kit at the same time. The latter needs its own special tool to protect the casing seal.

You'll need the VW PD engine timing tool set (ebay, cheap), the tensioner pin-spanner (ditto) torque wrenches that cover the correct range and possibly an angle gauge, which you can improvise.

You might well decide it's just not worth the hassle. I can't stress enough the need to factor in a £££ value on the risk factor (or contingency if you prefer). My gut is you could easily end up at £400-700 in bits, plus purchase (£350) plus risk factor (£500) plus time. Let's say £1200-1500 plus your time realistically.

If you've seen my Bale or Bounce Back? thread, you'll have seen how quickly the costs can shoot up, and that's for me, in the trade with a decent workshop, a back-catalogue of tools and useful bits plus a 'pragmatic' outlook on what will do the job :rolleyes: .

Would I take it on? I'd want a lot of pictures, to know it's got the right history and ultimately, will be the right car at the end of the project. When you buy a car for £350, it seems greedy asking for the history or that second key. Come to sell at £1500-1800 in a year or two and your buyer will absolutely want these things. In short, only spent your time on the right car. This might be it.

If only I listened to my own excellent advice 😁
 
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Rusty911

A2OC Donor
What's a scrap A2 worth? Well, one thing you often hear a seller say in response to an offer is 'I'm not taking that, I could break it for more'. That's often true. Some project cars effectively have a negative value as a project, in that they cost more to do than they could ever be worth.

But the 'I could break it for more' thing doesn't wash: you don't break a car for free. It takes up space, you have to strip each bit, clean it (hopefully), market it, package it plus risk a % for fraud / postal errors / idiot buyers etc. It might take months before you decide enough's enough and you weigh in the balance. Having said that, at our £350, what would it get on eBay if it all went wrong? Probably still £150-200, if not more. That's your risk factor ultimately.

The best value cars will always be the nicest ones that have been well looked after. As you go down the food-chain the value often gets worse even though they're cheaper: you have to do more to bring them up to standard and this inevitably costs more than the seller of a good one has priced in. Therefore the lower down the chain you go, the more you have to spend, often to end up with a car that still isn't as good as that 'expensive' one. Therefore these are the ones you (I, we) do for the fun and love of the car.
 

Howey

Member
Haha yes indeed!!
My repair route would be a replacement engine if a 75 from a polo most likely and swap the sumps

Seller gone quiet so suspect my reg request may have hit a sore spot!

Need to stop dreaming i suppose, if i was 10 years older and had more free time a project to keep me out of the pub (which i dont go to regardless of covid) and offset by stopping smoking to pay for it (i dont smoke) then this may well have been a reality!!

Know myself about buying a "cheap" car only to spend its purchase price again, so you now have great example money in a cheap pretender which will never hit that level, chase your ruddy tail !! Need to learn from my own mistakes!

Thinking maybe i should have bought a better specced A2 than i did, but on the other hand a "back to basics" car is sometimes refreshing and in respect of the concept behind the A2 quite fitting!!

Mid life crises i feel lol!!
 

Halduck

Member
The belt went on my dolphin grey tdi 90 40 miles after I bought it at auction. Cruising at 2krpm on the motorway when it went. Took it apart, all valves bent. Managed to find a used head on ebay for £120. I think I spent a further £400 in parts, stretch bolts, water pump and belt kit, gaskets, service parts, etc. I reckon I spent at least 36 hours in labour doing it all, but I was meticulous in getting it done right.

Its easy to check if the rods are bent. Once the head is off check the bores and pistons for damage, then use a dial gauge and magnetic base, get one piston to TDC and zero the gauge, then release the mag base and move to another piston and move bottom end to tdc for that piston and check the dial guage goes to zero, or very close to zero. Any difference more than around 0.1mm and the rods will probably be bent.

The car has been back on the road for a year or so now and has probably done around 3k miles without any issues

Sent from my SM-G975F using Tapatalk
 

Halduck

Member
I would seriously consider a cheap engine from a breaker rather than fixing the engine. You could still repair the damaged engine out of the car at a later date which would be a lot easier! Or you could part out the damaged engine for cheap spares on ebay

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Howey

Member
Indeed!!
Thanks for all input
Sadly its the 90 version which would work out too expensive (worth more when fixed i imagine)so thats that put to bed!!
Was hoping a few hundred quid would see it fixed up but not to be!
Cheers
Howey
 

Rusty911

A2OC Donor
Indeed!!
Thanks for all input
Sadly its the 90 version which would work out too expensive (worth more when fixed i imagine)so thats that put to bed!!
Was hoping a few hundred quid would see it fixed up but not to be!
Cheers
Howey
Well, it's a really good exercise to go through and consider what might be involved.

Sooner or later something crops up that fits the bill perfectly and you often look back to something like this and think 'I'm glad that didn't happen, it's worked out for the best.'

Good luck with your search 👍
 

Chiefmechanic

Active Member
I bought a 90 that had broken the timing belt. 5 of the 6 valves were bent and the buckets squashed. I bought a used head skimmed it before fitting and new gasket and stretch bolt for the head and cam. Did the timing belt while I was at it. Started pressuring the cooling system after 800 miles. Bought a 75 engine For £100 and replaced the engine. Never looked back. Put the 90 injectors and turbo on it and getting 58 mpg. No problem.
 

spike

Well-Known Member
Previous discussions on the differences between the 90 and 75 TDi indicate the 75 engine has a higher compression ratio so it's interesting to know the swap can be done


Cheers Spike
 
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