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Old 08-15-2013, 03:03 PM   #1
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Default While you do X, you might as well do Y - a tale of woe.

I did a variation of this thread when I did my timing belt but as I contemplate my next steps I would like to talk it out and get your opinion.

I am having cooling issues. This coming winter I plan on upgrading my radiator and fans because no matter what happens, that is a good move.

The quandary is related to when I do my coolant re-route, because I have a thought process that is preventing me from doing it. Because I have an 01 with VVT, I will need to change the head gasket.

This is where it unravels, because if I am doing a headgasket, to me it seems like a good time to do rods. And if I am doing rods, I might as well do pistons. This will require at least a ball hone correct? And pulling the engine? If I am pulling the engine, I may as well verify that my turbo oil drain is drilled properly and perhaps add a bung. At the very least I should drill another hole when the pan is off for oil temperature correct?

And since I have the oil pan off and the head off and the engine is out of the car, it would be a good time for front and rear main seals... You see where I am going with this? Where does it stop? Once you total up the cost of parts for everything above, it is a pretty hefty amount.

So basically because I have an 01 Miata, I have this feeling that a coolant re-route will cost near two thousand bucks based on all the "might as well do's."

I guess maybe just doing a head gasket isn't that big of a deal and I should just stop with that for now. I just wanted to hear what you all had to say and maybe hear about the stuff you have done just because you were there...
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Old 08-15-2013, 03:40 PM   #2
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Honestly, ALLOFIT sounds like a good idea. I would do as much of what you listed as possible. It wont be cheap, but it would be well worth it in the end. you COULD just do the headgasket, but i think like you... If im doing THAT much, may as well do the rest of it as well
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Old 08-15-2013, 03:42 PM   #3
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Headgasket and stop.

Then wait a bit and do the rest another time.
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Old 08-15-2013, 03:47 PM   #4
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This ^^^
Agreed...

that is unless you have the funds to spend, and the Time to do it all.... then... ALLOFIT
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Old 08-15-2013, 03:54 PM   #5
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If you can do rods & pistons for $2K, you're coming out way ahead of the game.

HG and reroute is a good stopping point because the effort required to pull the motor out is a lot more than just to take the head off.

--Ian
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Old 08-15-2013, 03:59 PM   #6
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If you can do rods & pistons for $2K, you're coming out way ahead of the game.

HG and reroute is a good stopping point because the effort required to pull the motor out is a lot more than just to take the head off.

--Ian
Not REALLY. There is a deal on here with, i believe, supertech pistons, manley rods, clevite bearings, and arp studs for like $750.

NOW... if someone ELSE is doing all the work, and you include parts, then yup, 2k is definitely coming out ahead. lol
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Old 08-15-2013, 04:26 PM   #7
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I feel this way too, because I'm about to build a motor to some extent. Where do you stop? I see it like this.

Doing rods 100% for sure, you could go ahead and slap in some pistons.

But if your doing pistons that requires machine work, so you may as well line bore, deck the block, etc.

If your doing all of that you may want to consider balancing your rotating assembly, and adding a BE oil pump.

If your doing that you should also go ahead and use the ATI superdampner.


AAAAAAAAND $4k+ later you could probably stop the "may as well do x if you are doing y" process.

It's a slippery slope. IMO, if there was a place to stop it would either be at the headgasket, OR throw in some rods, a quick hone and re-ring as well.
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Old 08-15-2013, 04:42 PM   #8
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Not REALLY. There is a deal on here with, i believe, supertech pistons, manley rods, clevite bearings, and arp studs for like $750.
You mean the deal (which for those parts is ~$1100, not $750) offered by the vendor who is currently banned and has been associated with another defunct company also unable to give its users support?

We offer the same parts for $1141+shipping. The difference is that we'll be here in 6 months when you have a question about them.
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Old 08-15-2013, 04:48 PM   #9
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You mean the deal (which for those parts is ~$1100, not $750) offered by the vendor who is currently banned and has been associated with another defunct company also unable to give its users support?

We offer the same parts for $1141+shipping. The difference is that we'll be here in 6 months when you have a question about them.
That must be the one... I didnt read too much about them, because i didnt need them. lol
Just remembered seeing them, and being like "Damn good deal there" lol
Maybe it was a different thread, and i got them mixed up. Might have been just pistons and rods for $750, and im remembering the $1100 thread from the defunct guys.

Even still, $1141 is a GREAT deal as well.... One That i may be hopping on soon for my 1.8 build.... haha
well, i have new rods. How much is everything else in the package deal through you guys, minus the Rods?
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Old 08-15-2013, 05:05 PM   #10
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$750 was the deal for rods, pistons, and rings.

I paid $200 for bearings on top of that and still haven't gotten them.

For OP, I would either:

1) wait until winter to do all of that

2) do the HG + reroute now, then see #1

3) find a spare block and rebuild it for less downtime.
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Old 08-15-2013, 05:41 PM   #11
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What are you using this car for again? Do you REALLY need that coolant reroute now? Or would it be better to wait until you are ready to build the engine.
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Old 08-15-2013, 05:53 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fireindc View Post
I feel this way too, because I'm about to build a motor to some extent. Where do you stop? I see it like this.

Doing rods 100% for sure, you could go ahead and slap in some pistons.

But if your doing pistons that requires machine work, so you may as well line bore, deck the block, etc.

If your doing all of that you may want to consider balancing your rotating assembly, and adding a BE oil pump.

If your doing that you should also go ahead and use the ATI superdampner.


AAAAAAAAND $4k+ later you could probably stop the "may as well do x if you are doing y" process.

It's a slippery slope. IMO, if there was a place to stop it would either be at the headgasket, OR throw in some rods, a quick hone and re-ring as well.

Lulz, I did exactly that. Started with just a plan to swap the 94 head for a 99 one. I ended up with a VVT motor and 4k in parts (plus machinework still to be done).

Ah well, do it once and do it right
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Old 08-15-2013, 06:01 PM   #13
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Lulz, I did exactly that. Started with just a plan to swap the 94 head for a 99 one. I ended up with a VVT motor and 4k in parts (plus machinework still to be done).

Ah well, do it once and do it right
LOL, yeah i feel like it's a trap. I'd be happy with my setup now if it didn't smoke. But.. it does. Rebuild o' clock.

Any reason to build such an extreme motor if you are going to have a 280-300whp mostly street car? Probably not from what I've read.

The problem is once you build the 4k motor you've got other hurdles to overcome that are also VERY $$$$. Such as a proper turbo setup to make 350+whp, a very nice ECU to properly control it, a transmission that can actually handle 350+whp, clutch... etc. These things get SO pricey over 300whp it's not even funny.
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Old 08-15-2013, 06:02 PM   #14
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The other side of this "feature creep" is having your car on jackstands for 2 weeks every month because you keep getting new parts to put on, and therefore it never runs.

So there are downsides and benefits to both.
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Old 08-15-2013, 06:25 PM   #15
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The other side of this "feature creep" is having your car on jackstands for 2 weeks every month because you keep getting new parts to put on, and therefore it never runs.

So there are downsides and benefits to both.
That used to happen to me all the time, but now that the car is somewhat well sorted it's SO ******* fun to drive and I refuse to let mods take it down any longer than a weekend. This is why motor building/installation will happen over the winter.
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Old 08-15-2013, 06:54 PM   #16
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Even still, $1141 is a GREAT deal as well.... One That i may be hopping on soon for my 1.8 build.... haha
Plus a couple hundred for Mazdacomp gasket set, plus machinework, and then you're gonna put a used oil pump into a just-built motor? And a used water pump? And 100K mile motor mounts?

--Ian
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Old 08-15-2013, 07:08 PM   #17
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You've got a 01 with a headgasket that mazda engineered to more or less solve the issue that the coolant reroute was intended to solve. You don't need to do the reroute or change the headgasket. Instead do ducting.

Problem solved, AND I just saved you over a grand. You owe me. I charge a standard 10% consulting fee.

But if you DO do a coolant reroute - well, since you've got the head off, you might as well get bigger valves, and since the valves are out, you might as well replace the valve seals, and if you do all that, you have to shim the lifters. Since it's going to a machine shop anyways for bigger valves, you might as well get it gasket matched , ported, and polished....

And as long as you have the engine apart and you're replacing seals, don't forget to replace all of the hoses and belts, and you're going to want to do a good cleaning on the alternator / a/c pump / p/s pump. Might as well drain and refill the power steering system while you're in there. And since you've got better access to the clutch master/slave, you should probably do a rebuild on those. As long as you've got the bare engine bay, you're definitely going to want to clean it up, shoot some primer, do a respray. Gotta pull the brake master cylinder if you want to get it all done right, hell, clean and reblack that while it's out.

Now, there are a lot of little dirty brackets in the engine bay and on the engine. You're definitely going to want to get a mediablasting cabinet for those to get them clean. It WILL take the paint off too. Don't worry about painting those though, because you're going to end up buying a home powder-coating setup. Once your wife smells that **** in the oven though, she's going to make you buy a garage oven that you'll find on craigslist for $150 with a broken stovetop on it....

****, I think I just blacked out. What happened? My life just flashed before my eyes....

Last edited by fooger03; 08-15-2013 at 07:23 PM.
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Old 08-15-2013, 07:09 PM   #18
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Mmmmmmm dat Project Creep.


This car was supposed to be a mild turbo BP street car for my wife. Maybe 200whp.


Some suspension later:



And a motor swap


I got this.



So naturally, this happened.




But it's cool, because i already had these on hand.






Because what's a $5-8k built motor when you've already come so far, right?


It's ok, eventually you'll just punch through to the other side.
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Old 08-15-2013, 07:23 PM   #19
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Loving the input. I think at this point I will just stop worrying about the re-route and just stick with the radiator and ducting. I can build the engine all at once when I have the money.
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Old 08-15-2013, 07:29 PM   #20
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Loving the input. I think at this point I will just stop worrying about the re-route and just stick with the radiator and ducting. I can build the engine all at once when I have the money.
But yeah, you should totally do that.
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