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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Im sorry this was so long, manageable chunks would have been better. ive been sat here for 3 days now and its driven me loopy 😂😪😭

Thankyou all so much for your help, im pretty sure of what needs to be done now, i am going to bash out everything at the weekend: shes on 80,000 miles now so theres not much that it couldnt do with replacing especially with all that access.

Im going to create a few seperate posts for the other little bits and bobs but for the first time in a few days i feel like i know whats going on.
I wish i could atleast buy you lot a round of beers.


No one on facebook was willing to hear me out and im now at the point where im ordering all the parts and planning to do the work. I just have a couple more concerns and any extra opinions/expereince/advice would mean the world to me 🙏 @CarsOrBikes is my hero.


-The guy whose given me all the diagnosis / advice and problem images i cant thank enough but i still have a couple of questions before commencing the work.
Without the help of people like him and you guys i would never be able to do any of this so thankyou thankyou thankyou 🙌❤

[-I will strike through questions that have been resolved. ]

-I will set up a seperate thread about the crank shaft pulley as even though i know the debate has gone on for ages i still dont think the truth of it has been uncovered.

:Before telling me to just go to a garage please appreciate that i dont have that kind of money and ive had garages fuck my car multiple times , my friend is a mechanic so will help me along the way but the expereince/ skill gained from doing this kind of work myself is priceless to someone who has an undescribeable love for cars and mechanics.



I did the screwdriver test on the output horn: It didn’t sound smooth but It didn’t sound dry or like there was any scraping so im going to leave that one until ive recovered from doing everything else.

[Im going to shoot the parts suppliers an email and see what their restocking fees are because Its my daily and I need to prepare for the worst (I only have a 3-4 day window to work on her) : Im going to need to order absolutely everything whether I need it or not 😕 Not really anyway around this.

If it all falls apart I may be able to borrow my brothers fiesta for a week or 2 as I work nights but just insuring myself on that temporarily costs a bomb.


-I wasn’t able to find any oil pump gears other than these Oil pump rotor kit and only the inner gear on ebay. do I need to contact Mini/BMW/Chrysler ? I assume you mean replace them when you said 'renew the gears'

-Here's the best price full assembly that I could find: MINI - 11147573765 Oil Pump&Cover R50/R53 Hopefully I don’t need it.

-Gasket is included in the Orranje timing chain kit.

-Conrod bearing confusion ?! : The cheapest full set seems to be atleast £100 and im confused as to the tolerances and how to find out which ones I need ?

- Orranje Performance: MINI Performance Parts, MINI Tuning, MINI Styling

-Ive been sat here planning and researching for atleast 17 hours now so forgive me for not getting to the bottom of this.

To inspect the oil pump ive got to take apart the whole belt assembly and due to the mileage it could probably do with a overhaul:

-Replace the tensioner with a new mini gates belt tensioner with super pro dampener bushes (As theyre all out of the powerflex ones) :MINI Gates K066PK1390 Tensioner Assembly, Idler Pulley, Belt R53 (T36168|T38404|6PK) - Orranje Performance: MINI Performance Parts, MINI Tuning, MINI Styling

Crank pulley : Ive wasted a load of time now looking into the +2% dampened one and other pulley configurations to support it but its not something i can afford right now and ive given up trying to justify it. what do you recommend ?

-There doesn’t seem to be much of a selection for the R53 and I really don’t want to be forking out for an OEM one just to use for a year or so 😕 it looks like im getting an eBay one for now

-Crankshaft Pulley Damper For Mini Cooper S R52 R53 11237525135 11237514461 | eBay

Or maybe a FEBI one: Crankshaft Pulley Fits Mini Cooper S Works R52 R53 OE 11237525135 Febi 104929

(Buying a cravenspeed +2% along with a + 5% alternator pulley is a cursed dream but at this point id just be an idiot to take any kind of risk of crank walk/ belt slip amoung other things: if it was my weekend car and the roads where i live werent like a rally stage course i would consider it.
Craven speed are bloody convincing or straight misselling : CravenSpeed Lightened & Enlarged Crank Pulley )

'This pulley is safe to use even though you are swapping from a ‘damped’ pulley to a single mass, solid pulley. The elastomer (rubber ring that looks similar to a harmonic damper) in the OEM pulley acts as an isolator to suppress natural vibration and noise from the engine itself. A traditional harmonic damping pulley would have been designed to protect against crank failure from torsional movement but CravenSpeed has researched the need for this and found it to be unnecessary in the MINI engine because of advances in engine design and materials. You can fit this part with confidence'

-Replace the crank shaft seal (Included in the Victor Reiz timing chain kit)

-Replace the crank shaft pulley bolt

-Conrod bolts: Worth replacing ? Again theyre fucking pricey.

ARP 206-6008 Con Rod Bolts - R53

- Replace the sump gasket

- Replace the belt: Gates seem to be the go to manufacturer and theyr'e the most affordable thing on my list ; I might see if I can get a deal on the belt , plugs , oil , filter etc as a bundle

Uprated idler pulley ? The belt tensioner kit includes one but I came across this: Any thoughts ?

KAVS R53 MINI Cooper S Lightweight 6 Rib Idler Pulley (KAVS-R53-IDLER) - Orranje Performance: MINI Performance Parts, MINI Tuning, MINI Styling : Id be future proofed but its not something I can imagine will provide me with any real benefit.

If I can see that the guides are worn or after changing the whole belt assembly it doesn’t sound like the issue has been resolved then I will commence plan B.


PLAN B 😂😭: Changing the guides and servicing the top end

- You recommend replacing the chain but ive heard theyre good for a life time ? Is it definitely worth the effort , i can imagine it gets stretched over time and it may be worn if the guides have disintegrated.

: If the guide has disintigrated is there anything else that i should really look into cleaning out ? You said pieces might get pushed up against the gauze and i can imagine any kind of plastic hanging around is going to cause more issues.

Im going to have to get most of the way in just to get those guides out by the looks of things so whilst im in there I may aswell take the whole top off:

Whole timing kit service : Victor Reinz / Elring R53 R52 R50 Timing Chain Kit (TK124G) - Orranje Performance: MINI Performance Parts, MINI Tuning, MINI Styling

11 31 1 485 400 - Timing Chain

11 31 1 485 403 - Sprocket

11 31 8 648 241 - Tensioner Guide Rail

11 31 1 485 397 - Guide Rail

11 21 1 485 402 - Sprocket

11 31 7 510 801 - Hydraulic Tensioner

11 12 1 485 838 - Rocker Cover Gasket

11 12 7 513 066 - Plug Seal x 4

11 14 1 485 162 - Timing Cover Gasket

11 41 1 485 173 - Rubber O Seal

11 41 1 485 172 - Rubber O Seal

11 11 1 485 171 - Crank Seal

-Inspect the rocker cover

-inspect the cams

-inspect the tops of the pistons

-Clean the cylinder head : Apparently brake and parts cleaner will do along with a scraper ?

Change the head gasket: Victor Reinz R50 R53 Top End Gasket Set with Head Gasket (02-34980-02) - Orranje Performance: MINI Performance Parts, MINI Tuning, MINI Styling :

I cant identify everything in their image but I will ask them before ordering or just double order and send back the ones not part of the kit that I don’t need.

From what I can see:

-Head gasket

-Exhaust manifold gasket

-intake duct gasket

-Valve stem seals

- Valve cover seal

-Injector o-rings


-Vacuum lines


-thermostat gasket

-thermostat housing: Extra £10 for a metal one

-Crank position Sensor

-Crank sensor O-ring

-Injector O-Rings

-Inspect the injectors: Should be arlight until I decide to take things further in a year or so.

-Spark plug tube seals

-Hose clamps for the BPV

-Hose clips Samco Hose Clip Pack For Coolant and Induction Kits (Gen 1)

-Change the cylinder head bolts for studs (£100 ?)

-Cam shaft sprocket bolt (£45 ? )

And then im going to quit my current job and get into the business of selling small bits of threaded metal 😐.

Ive found a set of rocker arms on ebay in good condition on ebay which im going to buy just because im scared about breaking the hydraulic lash adjuster clips and no one seems to sell replacements.

And ill also inspect the AC pump but I havent had any sign of this having an issue : Since were in England i doubt its ever been used.


-Air filter
-Oil filter

-Coolant flush

-Flush and replace the engine oil : what do you use ? Some people swear by different brands and others say its all the same.

-New plugs: (I used these last time so will probably get them again: NGK IRIDIUM IX SPARK PLUGS [x4] fits BMW 318 1.8 E36 M40 91->09/98 [BKR6EIX 6418 | eBay)

Seafoam ? Ive seen very mixed opinions (Im scared to even mention it) but not heard of it making things worse unless used incorrectly: Still undecided if I should do this before or after the top end service. Maybe both before and after.


Any more bolts worth buying just incase : stripped , rusted?
Impossible to remove bolts are my biggest fear : ive already destroyed a set of bolt extractors and a ratchet trying to change the sump plug.
I also destroyed a standard oil filter socket.
-It can turn a 1 hour job into a 1 week job.

Power steering fluid change ?

Lower engine mount bushing ? Powerflex one

Other bushings ?

Oil catch can ? Again strong opinions on both sides.

Doing a deep clean of the engine bay with degreaser : I do smell some burning at high revs but I believe its where I got oil all over the exhaust manifold when trying to change the filter

Should I look into changing the piston rings or is that a grade too far ?

Ever heard of an extended timing chain tensioner plug ?

Its an 11 year old car with 80,000 miles so I can imagine theres some lovely carbon deposits and worn seals waiting for me (The spark plugs looked a bit rough when I changed them last)

It’s a big old job but id rather get it all out of the way now.

I hope to own an R53 for life: These parts, your help and advice aswell as the back ache from the 18+ hours ive spent sitting here planning & researching should help me secure that.

-My mate whose a mechanic is going to come and make sure I don’t fuck it up too badly : Ive watched/ am going to follow the videos Mod Mechanic has made and take my sweet time with it .

Ive found some methods on organising bolts and am going to record myself whilst doing it.

Its probably worth the effort ; I will eventually get over the cost of the bolts and they should pay for themselves if I ever need to change anything again.

I know its a lot to process but does that all sound about right ?

Im going to get most the parts from Orranje if you know of any discount codes ?

Again I cant thank you enough for your advice and if you’ve got a paypal link send it over so I can atleast make it up to you in some way. If you dont accept something from me i will genuinely feel bad.

If theres anything else I can do to help don’t think before asking

Huge Respect,


Bob’s your uncle
3,745 Posts
I think you're going to have to break this up into manageable chunks to make it easier for the interested to respond. I'm exhausted already and I have to read a lot for a living.

2005 R52 One Convertible (The Smoker)
877 Posts
Fuck....I know Im a wordy sod but wow, just wow 🤣👍

In all seriousness fair play OP, youve been more rhan thorough but us MT'ers struggle with long content, and also do like to take the piss so dont take any of it personally.

Cars or Bikes on here really knows his Minis so if he is replying already on M2 i'd hold out for his response it'll b worth reading 👍👍

MIN-Tily Challenged
7,962 Posts
Apologies but you lost me just around the sentence after I read “over at mini2...”
I stopped posting there in around 2008, as the majority have no sense of humour ... I can only imagine it’s got far worse overtime.

So i have answered your other isolated post, but as others have already suggested, breaking issues into smaller packages may well help return far quicker responses from here.

Good luck whatever the issue was (y)
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