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Old 02-17-2010, 11:14 PM   #1
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Default Boundary billet oil pump gear clearances

What sort of clearances do you guys see?
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Old 02-18-2010, 04:51 PM   #2
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I suppose it depends on what you mean by "clearances".

Some are tight, some not so tight?

Less than 200 miles on this one.







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Old 02-18-2010, 05:40 PM   #3
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Why so groovy, and why did you open these ones again?
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Old 02-18-2010, 09:05 PM   #4
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This was the first time the pump was open, as it was purchased as a "blueprinted billet race pump" from BE.

This pump was purchased for and installed into my brand-new 1.9L race engine. The engine was pulled and the pump removed in order to diagnose extremely high oil pressure. Pressure high enough to have ejected the oil filter off of the block at full tilt under cold operating conditions. The culprit turned out to be a sticky pressure relief valve which would unstick when oil TEMPERATURE reached ~160°F.

When the pump was finally removed, the piston of the relief valve could not be moved at all. Amazingly, we just slightly heated up the relief valve area, the the piston virtually fell out on its own.

So I'd say that clearance was a bit tight.

As for the grooves, they are deep. Likely some slight metal shavings from the freshly built engine, I guess. Keep in mind, with cold starting oil pressures so high, that the oil filter was being by-passed (until the pressure relief valve released at ~160°F of oil temperature).

Its one of the very last things you'd want to happen to your newly built motor.
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Old 02-19-2010, 10:58 AM   #5
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Mine fit perfectly, but spun freely all greesed up and rebuilt.
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Old 02-19-2010, 01:12 PM   #6
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Stuff like this happens when you have shavings in the motors. We run looser clearances on nearly all the clearance specs from Mazda to give more room for jitter and vibration in the crankshaft. Because we know these gears are Rockwell C16 and the stock gears are high B-scale, a stock set of gears would have been demolished by this debris. It also indicates the type of material needed to groove the gears like this. That material must of been very hard, either valve train tappets, bead blast left overs, or iron block shavings from machining. Coppers, tins, brass, and etcetera would have been pumped through or molded themselves into the pump which pretty well rules out the fact that it could of been bearings or normal wear items. These gears look like they were coarse ground on a grinding wheel.

As for the possibility of contamination on our side we ultrasonic clean the each gear and housing set together to be absolutely spotless when we ship them, they are lubricated with Teflon grease, everything is assembled and we seal them in air tight bags ready to bolt on so the machinist doesn't even have to open the pump. This brings the possibility of contamination from our side to the lowest we can get it.

Despite the fact I believe we had no fault in this particular matter we still replaced it. However as I now keep a catalog of every performance gear set leaving the shop they were never on the tight side of clearances. They were always 1 or 2 thou below max, and the machinist has been evaluating these the same way as when this customer received his unit. I also know for a fact that we have never produced a gear set that runs as tight as the stock gears. Then again even if they were assembled "tight" the hardness of aluminum is around the B-scale of 57. The housing would of suffered from aluminum interference not the gears.

250 gears and counting only 2 sticking valves that I know of and both were on freshly rebuilt engines. Both the machine shops involved that assembled them curiously said they surgically assembled the motors in a clean room basically. One of the gear sets was placed in a stock housing and the other was a billet high flow assembly. Yet somehow our gears caused large chunks of super hard debris to be pushed through the motor.

My take on it is this. Spot clean your engine, and every oil passage. Never bead blast anything you intend to run inside your motor, and change your oil immediately after you begin running the motor. If you missed something it will be picked up right away in this process. Otherwise some of these parts could get jammed in something important like the relief valves and cause you serious problems.

Last edited by TravisR; 02-19-2010 at 01:31 PM.
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Old 02-19-2010, 02:38 PM   #7
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+1 on preoiling it with **** oil and dumping the oil for added safety.
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Old 02-19-2010, 09:01 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TravisR View Post
As for the possibility of contamination on our side we ultrasonic clean the each gear and housing set together to be absolutely spotless when we ship them, they are lubricated with Teflon grease, everything is assembled and we seal them in air tight bags ready to bolt on so the machinist doesn't even have to open the pump. This brings the possibility of contamination from our side to the lowest we can get it.
Exactly the reason the pump was not opened pre-installation. The result? A sticky relief valve right out its air-tight bag.

Quote:
...Yet somehow our gears caused large chunks of super hard debris to be pushed through the motor.
I don't follow the logic. Where did anyone suggest that the gears caused large chunks of debris to pass through the motor? Are you not aware that there is a bypass valve in the oil filter, which allows oil to bypass the filter at high pressures (for example, when the relief valve is stuck closed)?

Stuck pressure relief valve = High oil pressure.
High oil pressure = Oil bypasses the filter.
Oil bypasses the filter = Unfiltered oil to the entire engine (including pump).
Unfiltered oil = Danger to engine

Quote:
Both the machine shops involved that assembled them curiously said they surgically assembled the motors in a clean room basically.
I never said that, but isn't that exactly what you just asserted about your own practices (see your first quote, above)?

Are you suggesting that newly-built engines would not have debris from first start-up and break-in? If that were the case, why would anyone need to run a filter at all?

As you must recall, for several weeks, all of your opinions on diagnosing the problem centered on cool ambient air temperatures in the Northeast, and oil viscosity. You had equations, theory, and even graphs to prove the point. You even suggested I try Mobil 1 Racing oil, at about $20-25/quart, as the "perfect" oil for my engine, if it were not cost prohibitive.

And you know what? I did all of that (except the M1R). After weeks of oil changes, cold-starts, and datalogs, it turns out that I should have listened to the machine shops and engineers at Royal Purple who all suggested that the oil viscosity theory was bunk and that the problem was a sticky pressure relief valve.

When the engine was finally pulled and the oil pump removed and opened, it was clear to me that the pump could not have possibly received its full "blueprinting" service. Or so I thought. As one of the builders said, "blueprinted oil pump my ***". Rough castings, burrs, and turbulence-inducing sharp edges everywhere. When I asked you about it, you said that was normal. How exactly are the pumps you have re-manufactured "blueprinted"?

Inspection of the relief valve proved that it was stuck. The piston could not even be moved by forceful hand. Some heat was applied to the side of the pump, and the piston practically fell out on its own. Amazing.

The oil pump as I received it was a defective part. When I called to tell you about this, I could hear you sinking into your seat. I actually felt a bit sorry for you. You seem like a nice guy, and at the time I felt like I was telling you that your dog was dead. I even offered you a way out. I suggested on the phone and even email that perhaps my pump got placed in the wrong bin during its assembly process and that the relief valve went un-checked. You insisted that it was not possible, and that "you really want to say that this is not my fault". Apparently, it is possible for other people to make mistakes, but not your supplier. This was already weeks into the problem.

We again spoke and you told me that there were no pumps in stock, but there was one scheduled for production the following week, and that you would ship it out. I called the following week, and production was delayed. Two days later I read a post on here where you stated that there was one of the "new" pumps sitting your desk, ready to go out. Despite that, I waited another week and was then told there was another production delay. When we finally connected, you said that it was against your supplier's policy to replace an item without receiving the defective item first. This was news to me, as I planned on comparing the two pumps before sending the bad one back. Regardless, I shipped the pump the next day and received the replacement reasonably after doing so.

From the time I first contacted you to the day I received the replacement, at least 6 weeks had passed. Snow had set into the Northeast. My car was in pieces and on the lift at a shop. I was now unable to get my car & trailer to their normal storage places. I've paid for storage space for my car and trailer that I have not been able to use, and have racked up a good bill for having to leave them at the shop.

I have been up-front, honest, and respectful toward you all along. I never mentioned many of these side-issues to you before. I knew you could do nothing about them and had read about your other issues on these forums. Truth is, you sounded like a nice guy, and I felt a bit sorry for you.

Still, after all of my patience and willingness to give you a chance, the insinuation is that YOU are doing ME a favor. On top of that, the best explanation you have to offer is "user error" and a cheap-shot at my builders? I'm a bit surprised by that and now understand why you have not had much luck on forums.

Have you had the opportunity to hold my pump in your hands and inspect it yourself or are you relying on your guy in Connecticut to do everything? You drop-ship from the manufacturer, have returns shipped directly to them, and hold your customers to your supplier's return policies. Who are your customers doing business with, you or your suppliers?

My take on this.
I believed you sold the highest-quality oil pump available, and purchased one to protect the high-strung engine for which I had saved-up and planned carefully.
You shipped me a broken piece of crap, wrapped in an air-tight bag.
I patiently and politely followed all of your suggestions and spent an inordinate amount of time and resources to diagnose the problem.
You did not acknowledge that the pump was not functioning properly until I spent more time and resources to present proof.
Upon receipt of the proof, you pointed blame in every direction but your own.
I have spent more than 3-4x the cost of your pump on diagnosing and fixing the problem, and have done so without saying boo.
Your opinion is that you've done me a favor.

Really? I mean, REALLY?!?!
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Old 02-19-2010, 10:10 PM   #9
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Lube with petroleum jelly, no joke
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Old 02-20-2010, 02:31 AM   #10
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I don't want to get into a fight with you about this on a forum, but I want to at least make the case for my side here. When it comes to electronics, yea I’m pretty weak in the knees. When it comes to mechanical engineering, I would argue in my fields I am one of the best. There is a definite difference between the mechanical and electrical side of Boundary.


1.) There are a number of misnomers about flow and oil pump assemblies that are just simply not true. Boundary layer effects are the main reasons that smooth surfaces do not produce better flow. Boundary layer effects are those effects which can be enhanced by rippled surfaces which actually improve flow. Things like casting roughness actually improve fluid movement because they create a turbulence across the surface that laminar flow more easily rolls on. Similar to lining the wall with ball bearings as opposed to rolling two sheets together. As in airfoils, if you create a really smooth surface the flow will become turbulent in the free stream if little boundary effects exists. These turbulence effects are called laminar bubbles. If however you "trip" the fluid on the surface using what’s called a vortex generator (VG) it can actually decrease drag by creating these ball bearings I spoke of earlier. These are what the rough surfaces in the casting do. By making the unit super smooth inside you would decrease the amount of flow available because laminar bubbles are created because the free stream does not tightly adhere to the wall. The roughness creates this surface turbulence effect and creates a larger area for the free stream in the overall picture to flow through. Look up this paper for more information on tripping flows to decrease laminar bubbles at low Reynolds numbers: AIAA-3157-854 . This effect is exactly why NASCAR intake ports are polished with very high grit sand paper. I have nearly a decade of experience in fluids modeling and computational fluid dynamics, and all of my experience points me to saying that these rough surfaces are a positive and not a negative.

2.) There are no rough edges on the inside of these castings in any of the functional areas. They are hand de-burred in all functional areas its part of the process specification. Any sharp spots were caused by whatever was pumped through the motor. I think a lot of what you were seeing as rough and jagged was caused by the big pieces of whatever it was flowing through the pump. Anyone can attest that these pumps are perfectly smooth when they go out. The housings are also in VERY good shape. There may be an occasional sharp around a non-functional area, but everything that matters is de-burred.

3.) My theories on viscosity hold with my experience of the high flow pumps. On certain vehicles that use high viscosity oils in cold climates its very difficult to figure out what the relief valve is simply not controlling and what is actually ultra high pressure. Some people plug the piston squirters, then there are bearing clearances that play a roll, there are also other inconsistencies like oil hole diameters in the block themselves and casting imperfections. I was only trying to suggest absolutely every possibility so that you did not have to pull that pump out of there. It did turn out to be in the relief valve, but I spent a multitude of hours racking my brain for you to figure out anything else it could possibly be so that you didn’t have to take it back to the shop.

4.) The big problem I have with the unit slipping through is that it wasn't like we were running tons of units at a time. We had exactly 1 pump in the shop when your assembly was built because we only had so many in stock before the pumps were supposed to come through customs. Although you have not had experience with my machine shop we've worked together on a variety of high profile works, and Stuart has been impeccable. Army, Navy, Airforce, Commercial airlines, submarine camera casings, he has done them all and regularly gets repeat customers. Nothing leaves that shop without certification that it hit the specifications quoted. He holds the tightest clearances of any machine shop I know of, and has access to the highest quality equipment you can get your hands on. He is not cheap, but he is a perfectionist and his process is very well regulated. It’s also not like Stuart is one guy working in a machine shop, it is a full time CNC machining facility staffed with at least 15 people. His experience extends 31 years into the past and he has actually built CNC machines, both lathes and mills in his time as a machinist. I trust him implicitly with this type of work because it doesn't even stress his abilities. He held .0002 on a 4 inch diameter bearing for a Lathe. That compared to holding the tolerances required by these gears is nothing.

5.) On the return policy. This is a long story but basically here's what happened. We were waiting on a crate of pumps and they got stuck in customs. I kept getting told they would arrive any day, and we had spoke at the beginning of all this you said you were going to send the pump back the same week this all began. I didn't want to press the issue with you and make any demands as I expected it back. At the same time we were holding for the pumps to arrive anyways, so I figured you would take a few days and the pumps would get here. I kept asking you if you were going to send it back, and you said you would in the next couple days. When we actually got the pumps in that's when I had to demand it, but all this had kind of built up at the machine shop. Someone was going to have to pay for it, and if you didn't send it back it was going to be me. I almost bought a pump actually because Stuart and his manager were insistent that the pump sent out was fine.

6.) I am an engineer. I do not do manufacturing and machining. I have programmed 3-4-5 axis machines, and lathes, but that is not what my function is. We have strict policies put into place to produce these products. The engineers of any other company only implement specifications to be performed. I'm pretty handy with my mitutoyo calipers, but honestly, I'm not half the machinist Stuart is. He can throw that thing on a 100,000 dollar CMM machine and in 15 minutes gives me a distribution of the wave across the face down to .0001. My calipers don't even go that far. I'm not going to second guess my machinist's work. He replaced your pump with me just telling him that this will be a problem and you will be upset and go to the forums if you don't get a replacement. He absolutely insisted that that pump was perfect as he measured it when it was returned minus the massive amount of debris that was pumped through it. The relief valve assuredly became jammed from debris becoming jammed in the relief valve. You have only evaluated your situation from the side that I am at fault.

Take a look at it from my side. I have specified a step by step process for every pump to be looked at in the same way. Check the document below. I've already sent this to you but this is for everyone else as well. If this was carried out how could anything of been done wrong on my side? When we buy this pumps they are from a factory, and they are supposed to already be ready to function. We check this function just to make sure it’s ready to go. At the time the pump was assembled that relief valve worked fine. We've never had a single pump out of the now 75 high flow units we've built ever show any signs of a hanging relief valve. We've never returned a pump to a manufacturer for a hanging relief valve. That in itself says something, that whatever happened to your pump was extremely irregular if it was a defect.

Now, here is where the burden of proof shifts to the builder to prove. Those chunks that were taking out of that pump were not done by anything normal. Bearing pieces just can't do that to a 4340 billet. It has to be bead blast, iron, or hardened steel. We clearly see something was pushed through this engine that caused severe oil pump wear and that very same oil was pumped through the relief valve section of the pump. The real opinion of everyone here in Boundary regardless of what I sent you is that large pieces of debris were pumped through the motor and caused pieces of the debris to dig into or change the geometry of the cylinder of the relief valve piston or the piston itself. When temperatures warmed up the aluminum housing expanded enough to let the piston with the different geometry from the particles to move freely. The only reason I was addressing the situation the way I did was to tread lightly and not upset anyone. The only reason I replaced that oil pump was because I knew if I didn't it would be a public relations nightmare, and I knew you would take the side of the machine shop. You've been working with these guys for months face to face. I'm a guy over the internet, who claims to implement these processes. I knew I wasn't going to win the fight that the machine shop was wrong and we were right.

Further proof has been that I have seen this same problem with another customer that bought just the billet gears and put them into their housing that had a working relief valve. Immediately after start up the oil pump relief valve became jammed in the other position OPEN. We seen the same type of erratic wear here, and the once working relief valve (the same one he used for seasons before) all the sudden couldn't be moved and had to be literally hammered out. It is almost the exact same situation. The only difference is he ran his pump for 15-20 minutes as memory serves and his pump came out the same way. The machine shop claimed all kinds of things like the clearances weren't right the surface finish wasn't right (although they had no equipment to even test the surface finish of the gears), and yet this was the same gear we've sold to about a hundred people who had no problems. We measured tip-to-tip, under max, predicted side clearance, under max, predicted body clearance under max. This gear was not indifferent from anything we had shipped before minus the huge grooves in it. Why would this one cause all these problems when the others hadn't?

I beg of you to at least consider what I have said, and the reasoning for what I’ve said. I went to extraordinary lengths to try to help you in every way I could. I even replaced a product and fought with my machinist (Which never happens because once again we are good friends and we’ve been working together for a very long time) in order to get it replaced free of charge knowing that it was more than likely just like the other situation we were blamed for, but had no liability in. I tried to practice this business transaction in the very best way. I am again sorry for all the problems you ran into. I was very sad to hear of it, and I felt horrible for you regardless of who was at fault.
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Last edited by TravisR; 02-20-2010 at 04:09 AM.
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Old 02-20-2010, 02:51 AM   #11
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Ah-Ha pictures even. They look like the same wear patterns you had but his were a little less because he ran his engine for a far shorter period of time.

Here is the original thread:
https://www.miataturbo.net/forum/t24575-8/


Here is a thread exclusively about the oil pressure problem:
https://www.miataturbo.net/forum/t34310/

This guy was using his own housing remember. He just purchased the gears so I didn't have anything to do with his housing or his relief valve. The relief valve was working fine in previous seasons. He does a rebuild, something gets pushed through the pump and then all the sudden the relief valve that worked perfect for seasons becomes absolutely jammed. This case really looks like a copy of your case except our company is out of the question on the relief valve because we had nothing to do with it and it was thoroughly tested in the actual car running for years. The only thing they did was clean it, lube it, and assemble it. This is why I said what I said above. It is at least possible to even the biggest skeptic of our work that we put the pump through the same test they did, and it did function prior to being put in the vehicle. Then particles caused the piston to jam for whatever reason. Now given the probability of having all these other people successfully used the product and not have problems says that it is a much higher probability that outside factors affected the performance of the relief valve that we could not control. It doesn't eliminate us from having an error but we've really tried hard to reduce defective units to zero.

Again I don't want to start a fight here at all. I don't want to make you mad, and I know you are really frustrated and you can believe I understand why. I'm willing to answer even the toughest questions you have for me about the process of building these units though.
Attached Thumbnails
Boundary billet oil pump gear clearances-dsc01507.jpg   Boundary billet oil pump gear clearances-dsc01508.jpg   Boundary billet oil pump gear clearances-dsc01509.jpg   Boundary billet oil pump gear clearances-dsc01510.jpg   Boundary billet oil pump gear clearances-dsc01511.jpg  

Boundary billet oil pump gear clearances-pump.jpg  

Last edited by TravisR; 02-20-2010 at 05:18 AM.
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Old 02-20-2010, 03:42 AM   #12
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Here are a few pictures of the finish that is the inside of the pumps and what the gears should look like when they are installed.

The outsides of the gears are lathed which gives them a very nice finish. The vibratory finishing(gears shown are pre-vibratory finish) does dull them just a bit, but its necessary to knock down any edges that remain. You can also see in that picture where a de-bur tool cuts along the top of the gear to remove any large burs.

The pumps themselves although that's a little low resolution are free of these little nicks and cuts seen in your housing. They are free of those kinds of defects when we receive them and pumps are built from brand new housings every time. There is also none of that waviness that's present in your gears. That was certainly brought on by post production wear, as none of the tools present in the operations can even produce that kind of finish. The grinding process used on the gears is a professional Multi-tens of thousands of dollars grinding machine. Its not a bench top or anything. The shape that grinder produces is among the smoothest of any machining process. The rest is done with CNC mill and lathe which is also smooth, but after vibratory finishing there are pretty much no tool marks even left giving a uniform nearly drop forged type of finish minus the die lines.
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Boundary billet oil pump gear clearances-cimg0057.jpg   Boundary billet oil pump gear clearances-p4010020.jpg  
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Old 02-20-2010, 09:28 AM   #13
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Hey Travis,

Where are your gears manufactured?
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Old 02-20-2010, 12:13 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thymer View Post
Hey Travis,

Where are your gears manufactured?
Hey Thymer,

The gears are manufactured in New Fairfield, CT. They are always refereed to as a machining division of Boundary Engineering as Stuart is a member of the Boundary Engineering design group as well, and the company that actually does the machining does not want to be contacted by non-business entities. They actually even sell some of their time slots through my company to places that need machine work done so we are very closely tied. Their machining capabilities are listed in the attached file. They use some of the absolute highest quality machines in the business and are an aerospace grade manufacturing company.

(See attached picture) That's a project we worked on together. That's a plate of Ti-6Al4V that's total cost was around 7000 dollars. Its a prototype SatCOM antenna base plate for a new Army helicopter that we designed and manufactured. That's probably 75 finite element analysis runs worth of weight reduction I performed on the part. Twice as strong 4 times as stiff, and half the weight of the original part. Elegance, symmetry, and performance, that part makes me salivate to this day.
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Boundary billet oil pump gear clearances-0612081109a.jpg  
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File Type: pdf machcap.pdf (74.4 KB, 150 views)
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Old 02-20-2010, 12:44 PM   #15
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Travis, should i have any huge concerns about rebuilding my old pump and installing your new gears? My housing looked to be in great shape with no major signs of internal wear. The relief valve looked to be in great shape as well. I lubed all moving parts with vaseline before reinstalling. The motor has not been turned over yet so if you see any flaw in what ive done please advise so it can be fixed.
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Old 02-20-2010, 12:56 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TravisR View Post
The real opinion of everyone here in Boundary regardless of what I sent you is that large pieces of debris were pumped through the motor and caused pieces of the debris to dig into or change the geometry of the cylinder of the relief valve piston or the piston itself. When temperatures warmed up the aluminum housing expanded enough to let the piston with the different geometry from the particles to move freely. The only reason I was addressing the situation the way I did was to tread lightly and not upset anyone. The only reason I replaced that oil pump was because I knew if I didn't it would be a public relations nightmare, and I knew you would take the side of the machine shop.
Wow. Why would you wait until I brought this to a public forum to tell me your "real opinion"? WTF? All along you were just trying to cover your ***?

Three long posts, and you are right back to where we started from.

You confirmed everything I said.

You have stated many times and with great detail that you and your friend/supplier have an unparalleled collection of tools, talent, and ability. Were any of these resources used to determine the condition of my pump?

Have you put hands to it?
Did your friend with the big-dollar HAAS equipment?
You speculated that debris altered the geometry of the relief valve, either its cylinder or the piston.
Do you have the equipment and talent to determine if either of these is true?

The issue with the pressure relief valve was present from the very first start-up. As soon as the engine turned over, oil pressure pegged.

The very top of the relief valve, the portion where the piston resides when it is closed, was tight. When the pump heated up a bit, the clearance relaxed enough to let the pump operate normally.

Given your speculation of what happened, what would you expect the pressure relief piston and chamber to look like? How did they measure in comparison from one to another?

Do you have pictures of the piston and chamber? Did you see them for yourself? Did you hold it in your hand?

Or were you just taking the word of your friend, as any true engineer would?

You stated that you have been trying to cover your ***. Did it occur to you that your friend was doing the same to you?
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Old 02-20-2010, 01:07 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FastColt View Post
Travis, should i have any huge concerns about rebuilding my old pump and installing your new gears? My housing looked to be in great shape with no major signs of internal wear. The relief valve looked to be in great shape as well. I lubed all moving parts with vaseline before reinstalling. The motor has not been turned over yet so if you see any flaw in what ive done please advise so it can be fixed.
The gears are designed to be drop in with the old housings, but I always advise people measure them and put them through the standard rebuild checks on clearance. If they find them out of spec we'll go through our stock and see if we can find you another set that fits your housing better. It just happens that the housings are kind of all over the place in dimensions and that's been confirmed by FM, MiataRoadster, and a few others. So side, body, and tip clearances can fluctuate between housing to housing.

We just recently started fitting these gears to a new billet housing and we are now spot checking them all against that housing before each set is shipped. We give a sheet that has predicted clearance values for the pumps, but that only proves the gears are OK in that housing.

So as long as you did the clearance checks you should be fine. I don't think anyone should get too worried about it, because the incident of these valves sticking is really a wide spread problem just do a check on Miata.net for relief valve sticking. This is absolutely nothing new its been going on for a lot of years before my product was ever introduced.

Last edited by TravisR; 02-20-2010 at 03:43 PM.
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Old 02-20-2010, 01:39 PM   #18
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im scared now for the pump im going to be ordering soon =/
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Old 02-20-2010, 02:53 PM   #19
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Well this has actually been a thing where we've been getting more and more knowledge over time. We actually did do an in-depth analysis, and on Monday I'll have him fire back up his microscope and take some pictures. He reported wear like we see in your photos but everywhere pretty much.

When this first came in I wasn't sure. I'm never quick to blame anyone else, but at the same time our process is locked down very tight. So this has taken some time to figure out. I wasn't just covering my behind, but I knew the machine shop sure wasn't going to take credit for it. I didn't want to have it hanging on my company in way even in the least. If it could be in anyway credited to me sending out a bad pump I just wanted it to be handled and to fully take responsibility. I don't need bad press on good products. I did send you a very long email outlying the complete logical process for the analysis, but we didn't stop there. We have continued to update our records and take new information into account. It was always my gut feeling we did nothing wrong, but what separates me from the machine shop is that I don't use my gut feeling as proof.

The other thing that torques me off is that machine shop has never said "well maybe we could have left some debris in there that caused this." "Maybe it was our fault" "Maybe we did something wrong." My position has always been there is a probability distribution that anyone is at fault even us. Without further analysis no one knows what happened in that motor. So who is covering their behind and who is really trying to figure this out? I can tell you the engine builders didn't go through and do fluid analysis. I can tell you they weren’t looking at every inch of the motor to figure out if they screwed up. They didn't go through and figure out where the metal shavings that made your oil pump look like a waffle grid iron came from. I bet they haven't touched this stuff since they put the new pump in. They don't care about it.

We measured the piston to cylinder fit, and it was in spec, and consistent with other relief valves. However, there were significant surface irregularities on the piston, and fitting a tool all the way up the cylinder bore to measure the fit at the top would be pretty well impossible to do. We identified heavy metal contamination of all the fluids collected.

The only way to get at the top of the cylinder for the relief valve would be to cut the relief valve cylinder in half. If we did that though we couldn't measure it so we are in a predicament to figure out the actual precise measurement at the top of the cylinder. I actually have an idea for that right now. I'll see if we can do it on Monday.

The most damning evidence is what’s right here in front of us though. Look at that picture you posted up. That gear set looks HORRIBLE. While your oil filter was bypassed some of the time your surfaces should NEVER look like that. Those particles are very large that made those grooves, and when we get the microscope pictures back I'll put a scale on it. I'll put a set of our gears as shipped under the microscope and show you those. Whatever was passing through here was created by negligence on someone’s part. You should not have pieces of metal that size floating around because they could get lodged in anything in this motor. Bearings, tappets, valve guides, and relief valves included. Those are big chunks.

Stuart is the one that physically examined your parts. Like I said, I don't have the tools to do the kind of precision measurement required so putting them in my hands is like giving a blind man a book. There is nothing to look at that I would be able to distinguish with my bare hands.

The big issue I have with the pressure pegging out from the first time it started up is that when I first start my car up the oil pressure always pegs out. You were in the northeast, and using thick oil. I know here in Indiana when I fire my car on 5w-30 it will go straight to 90+ PSI. Only after everything heats up does it go back down. Your car has a high flow pump while mine does not so your condition would be worse on startup. So when can we for sure confirm the first time the relief valve stuck? Did it happen immediately at startup, at some period after the initial startup, at some period after several startup cycles, was it over a few days of driving? I know from talking to you, you weren’t exactly aware of when it happened. We know at some point it got pretty bad and ejected an oil filter that’s when we knew we had a problem, but that was weeks later when the problem maybe finally got to its worse possible point.

I need to find a way to cut down on the lenght of these posts, I'm going to make a full report after we get done discussing this for those of you who want the story but don't want all my long windedness. This crap just fills pages because there is so much to it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by wildo View Post
Wow. Why would you wait until I brought this to a public forum to tell me your "real opinion"? WTF? All along you were just trying to cover your ***?

Three long posts, and you are right back to where we started from.

You confirmed everything I said.

You have stated many times and with great detail that you and your friend/supplier have an unparalleled collection of tools, talent, and ability. Were any of these resources used to determine the condition of my pump?

Have you put hands to it?
Did your friend with the big-dollar HAAS equipment?
You speculated that debris altered the geometry of the relief valve, either its cylinder or the piston.
Do you have the equipment and talent to determine if either of these is true?

The issue with the pressure relief valve was present from the very first start-up. As soon as the engine turned over, oil pressure pegged.

The very top of the relief valve, the portion where the piston resides when it is closed, was tight. When the pump heated up a bit, the clearance relaxed enough to let the pump operate normally.

Given your speculation of what happened, what would you expect the pressure relief piston and chamber to look like? How did they measure in comparison from one to another?

Do you have pictures of the piston and chamber? Did you see them for yourself? Did you hold it in your hand?

Or were you just taking the word of your friend, as any true engineer would?

You stated that you have been trying to cover your ***. Did it occur to you that your friend was doing the same to you?
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Old 02-20-2010, 04:48 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TravisR View Post
...Without further analysis no one knows what happened in that motor...

The only way to get at the top of the cylinder for the relief valve would be to cut the relief valve cylinder in half. If we did that though we couldn't measure it so we are in a predicament to figure out the actual precise measurement at the top of the cylinder. I actually have an idea for that right now. I'll see if we can do it on Monday.
Once again, you agree with and prove all of my points.

The defective pump was sent back to your friend two months ago.

All of a sudden, you are going to start looking into this "on Monday".

By your own admission, you have not held the pump and do not even have pictures of the parts.

By your own admission, the top of the relief valve is difficult to access, and it is the exact location I have suggested that was not properly "blueprinted".

You are upset because you assume the machine shops have washed their hands of responsibility, yet you have done the same since the very beginning.

Do I need to post the data logs & graphs I sent you, and your lengthy responses declaring oil viscosity as the culprit?

...and thick oil? What are you even talking about? In your records, what weights and types of oils did I state I was using?

You also make it sound as if you do not have an understanding of the timeline of events.

I told you that the pressure pegged from the very first start up, and at every cold start since.

Within one week, the engine started for the first time, the engine was broken in on a dyno, the car spent 2 days on-track, and the car went up on a lift, where it has been ever since. That was Halloween weekend. I received the replacement around Christmas. What are you even talking about with "a few days of driving"? The car is not street-legal.

I'm amazed that you'd even suggest that it was only after a period of time that I discovered that the filter was ready to eject. The oil filter blew an o-ring at the track, and that was before I even sent you the first email.

I am lucky that I was so careful with my car. If I were only relying on the stock pressure gauge, and noticed that oil pressure dropped to normal operating ranges when the engine came up to temp, than it is likely I would have taken to the track with insanely high oil pressures. I believe the oil filter would have ejected and created a giant oil slick on the track. From all of your posts, I do not think you have taken a moment to appreciate the gravity of that situation.

You have been asked some tough questions that you apparently cannot answer yourself. You have to wait for your friend/supplier to supply the answers. At the tip of your tongue, however, are all sorts of insignificant facts regarding equipment and other jobs your machine shop does.

You falsely assert that others are making statements without proof, yet you do the same. You have already said that you replaced the pump even though its failure was no fault of your own, and now you have revealed that you are still "looking into it".

Months has passed since I received the replacement pump, but I haven't heard peep from you.

So, if you are still "looking into it", what plan of action would you take if you determined you sent me a faulty part?
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