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Discussion Starter · #181 ·
Hi guys thanks for the feedback.

In reply to George1, how many hours did you data log and adjust for? Were you starting from scratch or did you have a base map and tune to work off from?

KNT - I would love to go standalone, but thats a budget im not working with right now. Perhaps next year, and then id look to have each primary with egt sensors in to know what each cylinder is doing.

Walt - Im around 3.5 hours away from them - so not that close. I do know who they are, but im not familiar with Nick K..he's not the ex Manic guy is he?

TBH i was looking at booking out time with Hybrid Tune in Suffolk. Some of you may know they run some of the championship winning Mini Challenge race cars at the moment. They have a great setup and have excellent reviews (30+ 5*)
I can book time out and pay for the dyno time and operator and log the pulls and talk to Lorenzo to make minor adjustments and send over a new file.

So my rear PCV is failing to seal properly which im putting down to the mixed running performance. a new genuine bmw item arrives Friday. However i managed to do a brief pull in 3rd last night o 6893rpm, a little shy of the 7100 redline. Its making 22.48psi and after re-configuring my turbosmart eboost2 controller to new values it ran a lot better.

Settings were:

obS is 14 (same as spring pressure for overboost number)
Set point (SP1 is 20. Duty cycle value is 0-99 but 20 is default)
Setting nSP (number of set points is 1)
bG1 (gate pressure is 15. Suggests to have it 5psi below desired boost pressure (20psi) and to adjust from there.)
Cylinders 4
Scale is PSI
Bar graph set to 20psi
SN1 (sensitivity is set at stock level of 20, but to not go beyond 30)

Now even though i set the turbosmart to those parameters i made more boost than desired.

Small Log:
 

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Yes, Nick is the ex Manic guy, so if you have grief with Manic you're probably not interested. However, most of the guys with grief have not had serious builds and had other "underlying" problems. And, I don't believe any of the complainers had a big Garrett. I'm still running his original tune, even after upgrading to the G25-660 and tubular manifold. No complaints and awesome results. Yes, I've blown it up a couple times, but never because of the tune --- all detailed in my build thread.

Eventually, you're gonna want to push the turbo beyond the MAP sensor limits of 24 - 25PSI. That's when you're gonna require a tuner to "fool" the ECU. Also, when monitoring boost, you'll need to measure externally, typically at the manifold, 'cause the OBD boost reading is from the MAP sensor which is limited. All my datalogs show a max boost of 24.XX, even when external gauge shows 30+ PSI. Long ago, talking with the AP tuner, he said don't take it over 24 - 25PSI, that was the max my custom AP tune was good for. I've had my Manic tune handling up to 36PSI from the GTX2860R.

Whoever you choose, ensure they have experience with "big boost" turbos in a Mini.
 
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Discussion Starter · #183 ·
Not quite believing this myself, but the headgasket has blown last night as far as I can tell. Heading home after work gave it a bit of boost for probably 3 seconds wot up a hill and I checked my mirror and a lot of smoke out the back, looked ahead and smoke coming out the bonnet, then the car died. Total running time probably less than 5 seconds before it died. Pulled over and there was zero water in the header tank, the dipstick was a cloudy white/grey colour and a small amount of a similar colour under the valve cap.

This was at just after 8pm and eventually made it home after one failed recovery because of the height of the car and home by 2am after the second recovery.

I'm having mixed feelings right now but one of them is a gut feeling of something isn't right from the work that was done. I'm doing by best to remain non reactionary and to process this, but gut feelings don't tend to be wrong. Im not sure that I want to go into the reasons why just yet, but I'm still waiting to hear back from the owner of the garage from 8:30pm last night even though his social media which we communicate on has been updated with products for sale, which in my mind is pretty poor tbh.

I'm hoping it is "just" the headgasket but it's going to require a decent strip down to check everything. And understand what went on.

Hood Automotive exterior Automotive lighting Vehicle door Bumper

Hood Vehicle Automotive lighting Motor vehicle Automotive tire

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Oil under the car.
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Right now I'm open to constructive feedback and options. Thanks 👍
 

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Not quite believing this myself, but the headgasket has blown last night as far as I can tell. Heading home after work gave it a bit of boost for probably 3 seconds wot up a hill and I checked my mirror and a lot of smoke out the back, looked ahead and smoke coming out the bonnet, then the car died. Total running time probably less than 5 seconds before it died. Pulled over and there was zero water in the header tank, the dipstick was a cloudy white/grey colour and a small amount of a similar colour under the valve cap.

This was at just after 8pm and eventually made it home after one failed recovery because of the height of the car and home by 2am after the second recovery.

I'm having mixed feelings right now but one of them is a gut feeling of something isn't right from the work that was done. I'm doing by best to remain non reactionary and to process this, but gut feelings don't tend to be wrong. Im not sure that I want to go into the reasons why just yet, but I'm still waiting to hear back from the owner of the garage from 8:30pm last night even though his social media which we communicate on has been updated with products for sale, which in my mind is pretty poor tbh.

I'm hoping it is "just" the headgasket but it's going to require a decent strip down to check everything. And understand what went on.

View attachment 105099
View attachment 105100
View attachment 105101
Oil under the car.
View attachment 105102
View attachment 105103

Right now I'm open to constructive feedback and options. Thanks 👍
I'm not very knowledgeable on these matters but all I would say is don't rush to any decisions until you know what the issue is.
 

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That's awful! I'm gutted for you after all the work and money that's gone into it. Hopefully it's something easy to fix.

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Sounds a lot like one of my engine failures. Too much boost with too high a compression ratio, and before CSS installation. Before doing a teardown, try a borescope and look for damage like this pic --- maybe save time and energy before making big decisions.

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I'm too lazy to go back and look up the details of your build, so you might not have similar conditions. I sincerely hope it's only a head gasket.
 
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2005 R53, 2005 R53 lightweight, 2008 R55S, 2012 R58FJCW, 2014 R60SD All4, 1996 Mini Cooper 35SE.
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I understand the temptation to critique the workshop it just left but I really would reserve that for now, this stuff doesn't necessarily have to be linked to anything they did at all, water and oil mixing.... what did they do to it that could lead to this occurring? The motor hasn't been apart from what I can remember you talking about in this last mod process, other than the turbo etc being off anything motor related is likely just either it's own failure or consequential most likely, as suggested above, too much for the block/liner etc.

It may well be pressure related, it could as you suspect, a head gasket, iirc you don't have a CSS and I have no idea if you have ARP stuff helping to hold it together, so either are possible, you might just be really unlucky and have a seal failure for the cooler or perhaps could even have a core/casting plug gone, there are four in the head, two you can get from BMW (chain end, one is an access plug), two you can't (under cams), the latter occurred on one of mine right after a rebuild, frustrating to say the least and took some cleaning, a pressure test will soon reveal the issue, hopefully it's a minor hurdle. If it's the latter plugs I have them so let me know if required ;O)
 

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Discussion Starter · #189 · (Edited)
Thanks for the feedback guys. As it stands I'm just taking a few days off from the car, stressful night last night and sadly my wife's granddad has passed away this evening. It does put things in perspective.

Moving forward I don't have the space for a tear down, nor a garage so it's going to need to be taken to a shop.

Hand Camera lens Automotive lighting Automotive tire Camera accessory

Valve cover cap.

One thing I've been asked is wether the turbo oil feed is in the correct position? Maybe one of you can confirm it's orientation? (The heat wrap that got warn away was due to fouling on the bonnet. I've now cut a section of the double skin away by the air vent)
Yellow Motor vehicle Hood Auto part Automotive exterior

Tire Automotive fuel system Motor vehicle Automotive tire Tread

Bit of a tight pinch.

Motor vehicle Gas Auto part Machine Electric blue

Motor vehicle Hood Vehicle Automotive tire Automotive design

Is this correct?
Hood Motor vehicle Bag Automotive exterior Luggage and bags


Boost wise it was still on my RPM stage 3 map, and with the settings posted earlier on the Turbosmart eboost2 controller it was making 22.48psi. (a long way off the 30psi that was indicated as a peak number) I respect 22.48psi on this Garrett effectively produces much more force than the 22.6psi I was making on the hybrid.

I'm running ARP main and head studs, ported and polished head, 3 angle valve job. Supertech headgasket (30psi rated), Supertech pistons and rods, titanium beehive valve springs, lightened and balanced crank etc. New plugs (1422 NGK plugs) Liqui Moly 10/60.

Before I left the shop the coolant was a good inch or so under minimum on the stock header tank. This was duly topped up with coolant. The first squeeze of the throttle after it was hot, in 4th at 60mph resulted in grey/black smoke and a heavy missfire. I later that day topped up the coolant. Garage didn't know why, but commented it wasn't extensively ran and certainly wasn't pushed hard.
Re the coolant, I was under the impression that it was bleeding the system and would need to be topped up so no major issues. I did this again putting in over half a litre each time. I kept an eye on things but continued that thought it was just bleeding the system.

I run the Lenovo 8" tablet with Dash Command showing coolant afr fuel trims intake temp etc. I never saw it get too hot at the time,, late 70s to 80s. I did go back after I parked up and it said 103f so hot, I didn't know at the time but it didnt have any coolant in it.

Bottom line it's going to need a comp test to rule the headgasket I think in or out.

But maybe there is a possibility the oil and coolant lines haven't drained properly and something with the turbo has resulted in this situation?
 

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Sorry to hear about your wife's grandad. A stressful car situation isn't what you need right now. Hope you can take some time out to regroup

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Here's some info you can use when family issues stabilize.

N14 oil is gravity fed thru the turbo so the oil inlet line should be directly on the top. From your pics, it appears the label is on top with oil and coolant at equal heights. Here's a very old pic of my GTX2860R showing oil inlet on top. Coolant is, by my choice, using banjo fittings, and are pretty much equi-distant from the top.

Automotive fuel system Motor vehicle Auto part Nut Automotive exterior


A more significant concern is the location of the oil and coolant lines with respect to the turbo label --- your oil line is on the right hand side of the label while mine is on the left. If label placement is consistent within turbo models, yours are not connected properly --- oil going into coolant passages. Your pics don't show which turbo port has oil return line connected, but it should be the one opposite (180 deg away from) the oil inlet. Obviously, the oil and coolant passages do not intersect anywhere inside the housing, so if inlet is wrong then the outlet must also be wrong in order to keep fluids from mixing. If only the inlet is wrong, oil will mix with coolant. Also note that my oil inlet port is a smaller diameter that coolant ports and the oil outlet port is designed for a flange.

Now that I've thoroughly confused you, set this aside and go spend time with your wife.
 

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"A more significant concern is the location of the oil and coolant lines with respect to the turbo label"

Surely nobody would get that wrong. It's a bit of a fundamental. I hope that's not the case.

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Thanks for the feedback guys. As it stands I'm just taking a few days off from the car, stressful night last night and sadly my wife's granddad has passed away this evening. It does put things in perspective.

Moving forward I don't have the space for a tear down, nor a garage so it's going to need to be taken to a shop.

View attachment 105110
Valve cover cap.

One thing I've been asked is wether the turbo oil feed is in the correct position? Maybe one of you can confirm it's orientation? (The heat wrap that got warn away was due to fouling on the bonnet. I've now cut a section of the double skin away by the air vent)
View attachment 105111
View attachment 105112
Bit of a tight pinch.

View attachment 105113
View attachment 105114
Is this correct?
View attachment 105115

Boost wise it was still on my RPM stage 3 map, and with the settings posted earlier on the Turbosmart eboost2 controller it was making 22.48psi. (a long way off the 30psi that was indicated as a peak number) I respect 22.48psi on this Garrett effectively produces much more force than the 22.6psi I was making on the hybrid.

I'm running ARP main and head studs, ported and polished head, 3 angle valve job. Supertech headgasket (30psi rated), Supertech pistons and rods, titanium beehive valve springs, lightened and balanced crank etc. New plugs (1422 NGK plugs) Liqui Moly 10/60.

Before I left the shop the coolant was a good inch or so under minimum on the stock header tank. This was duly topped up with coolant. The first squeeze of the throttle after it was hot, in 4th at 60mph resulted in grey/black smoke and a heavy missfire. I later that day topped up the coolant. Garage didn't know why, but commented it wasn't extensively ran and certainly wasn't pushed hard.
Re the coolant, I was under the impression that it was bleeding the system and would need to be topped up so no major issues. I did this again putting in over half a litre each time. I kept an eye on things but continued that thought it was just bleeding the system.

I run the Lenovo 8" tablet with Dash Command showing coolant afr fuel trims intake temp etc. I never saw it get too hot at the time,, late 70s to 80s. I did go back after I parked up and it said 103f so hot, I didn't know at the time but it didnt have any coolant in it.

Bottom line it's going to need a comp test to rule the headgasket I think in or out.

But maybe there is a possibility the oil and coolant lines haven't drained properly and something with the turbo has resulted in this situation?
Sorry to hear about the family issue, never an easy thing at the best of times. Now is the time to spend with the wife. When your ready, I was watching Matt Armstrong on YouTube last night and his TT Gallardo died on holiday in Spain and they couldn't figure out why. Once they got it back to the UK it turned out to be a fault not related to the modifications but something that was a known issue with the car and could have gone at any time. The point is take a break and come back to see what the issue is as it might be something not related to your build at all or something that could have happened at anytime regardless of your build stage. Hope that makes sense.
 

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I realize some of my previous suggestions may not seem very practical, but remember, there aren't many Garrett installations out there and I'm not familiar with any of the people doing GC1980's work --- how much applicable experience they have. As a result, I'm probably insulting some readers intelligence --- sorry 'bout that.

Here's a copy of the Garrett turbo install instructions, supplied with each turbo. I've flagged the section about oil ports.
Also including Garretts flange diagram to show oil and coolant ports. Since OEM hoses usually need to be changed to fit the Garrett, someone not familiar could easily choose hoses with fittings to fit the wrong port. From my experience fitting a tubular manifold and big Garrett, hose selection and routing is very difficult. My installation bypassed the Aux coolant pump hoses because of the extreme hose routing required.

Regarding turbo label placement --- my label is for the CHRA by itself. I updated a GT28R after it fell apart. GC1980's label is for the entire turbo. It's conceivable the factory places them differently, depending on whether it's a finished product or sub-assembly. The main feature to look for is the oil inlet location with respect to the oil outlet flange.

One final comment on boost measurement. OBD connector has at least two different boost readings, one for each sensor. The manifold mounted sensor goes thru the ECU before appearing at the OBD connector and may not be an accurate indication of actual boost, especially when big turbos are involved and have been re-mapped. My original AP map was limited to 24 - 25PSI and that's the max indication at the OBD, even when my external gauge (mounted under the manifold MAP sensor) indicates 30+PSI. Not knowing how / when GC1980 set up the boost controller, it's very possible the turbo produced 30+PSI during the setup process, especially if boost was being monitored at the OBD connector. I can't emphasize enough that boost measurement is to be done from the manifold, not the OBD connector, especially when using a stage 3 or higher map. This can and should be verified by talking with your tuner. I have OBD data logs (using my AP) and simultaneous dyno spreadsheets showing very different boost levels at the same RPM. PITA to read but available.
 

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Discussion Starter · #195 ·
Hey Walt, thanks for the commentary. Appreciate the time to respond in such detail.

The guys doing the work do have a reasonable reputation, they're even in the latest edition of Performance Mini doing some work for the magazine project car, albeit a Coolerworx installation. Not that hard, even I've done my own on the street.

However I was lead to believe this is within their capabilities, the owner himself as a big turbo build which he bought off someone and sadly had issues resulting in a full rebuild undertaken by himself so that was encouraging too. No I hadn't seen previous "before now" installs.

No need to apologize, if anything for me anyway the simpler the better.

Unfortunately I can't answer much about the routing of lines. Although when I compare other "big turbo installs" to mine, It looks like the lines are a little on the tight side, but that's purely from the top position.

I've just received from the garage build pics. I wonder if there is anything in these that might have some significance?
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Car Motor vehicle Hood Light Automotive design

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Compared to mine.
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I think the hoses on the turbo core look ok. Oil goes to oil and water goes to water. Even if the core was out by 90 degrees then they shouldn't mix, it would just destroy the turbo.

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This latest set of pics shows a better hose orientation. Looks like the oil and coolant hoses at the turbo are correct, just can't determine where the other ends are connected --- probably OK. Oil inlet seems to be within Garrett's position limits too. Not much else can mix oil and coolant --- maybe an oil-cooler gasket, or as suggested, the head gasket.

Your "tight lines on the top side" are probably a good thing --- you need clearance between these lines and the hood. Under hard acceleration, the turbo side of the engine rotates upwards --- torque, not much but enough to cause hoses to make contact. I had to cut reliefs on the under side of my hood. Maybe your turbo is slightly lower due to the tubular manifold.

When my engine blew as shown above, the intake cam lost its oil source and scored both a cam journal and the head's cam surface --- remember, there are no cam bearings. This is what prompted me to go with Cat Cams --- why buy OEM for a hi-performance build? So, if and when a teardown is done, be sure to to have all bearing surfaces checked for excess wear. Coolant does a lousy job of lubricating.

Since you're not doing the work, and your garage staff has "big turbo in Mini's" experience, I'll back off with all my commentary and suggestions. Hope they don't find a major problem ---
 
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Literally just get it to Jason. You’ve been through a though time by the looks of it so get someone with previous experience to take a look. You don’t want that shiny new engine taking a hit!

GL with the build and I hope you get it fixed!


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Discussion Starter · #200 ·
Cars booked for collection next Wednesday, and will be making its way to Jason aka Millsys Garage. No estimation yet on when any work will start, but I'm happy in the knowledge that whatever the outcome of the diagnosis, it's in very safe hands.

It's been one hell of a journey in the last two years, I'm hopeful the future will be a little brighter in the coming weeks.

I will update as soon as I know what has happened and more positively, what the plan will be moving forward. 🙏
 
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