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Old 04-19-2012, 11:30 PM   #1
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Default drain pan threads stripped... anyone use a time-sert?

Well I just had a BP-4W motor dropped into my 1990 NA, and when going to do my first oil change today, I noticed a bit of an oil leak around the drain plug. When removing it, I found that the drain plug was one of those oversized plugs to self-seal stripped threads. The threads are definitely trashed, especially after the band-aid oversized drain plug, so chasing it or re-tapping to the M14 x 1.5 size wont work.






I'm looking at the Time-Sert kit specifically made for fixing stripped oil pans for the aluminum Mazda pans, but was just wondering what peoples experiences have been with this product, specifically for oil pans.

http://www.timesert.com/html/oilpan.pdf

I know it's popular for fixing cross threaded or stripped spark plug holes, but haven't seen much when it comes to the oil pan repairs on the Miata.

The car is a track only car, and is used for wheel to wheel, so whatever repair is done, I want it to be reliable and durable. If this is just a band-aid, like the oversized drain plug, I'll want to do it right by replacing the pan.
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Old 04-20-2012, 12:45 AM   #2
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Time Serts are good stuff. We actually use them on some production aluminum castings that we machine for a customer. They wanted more durable threads because they would be screwed on and off many times and they didn't want galling issues so we put stainless timeserts into brand new castings.

Beware, the kit is pretty pricey. It's one thing to save a couple hundred dollar head but it's another to save a cheap (er) oil pan. IIRC, the kit is like $80 because you have to use their special tap which comes with the time sert.
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Old 04-20-2012, 11:35 AM   #3
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I would be tempted to take the pan off, weld an aluminum -10AN bung over top of the drain plug and then use a -10AN cap as your drain plug.
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Old 04-20-2012, 12:22 PM   #4
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Just a guess, but I suspect the OP is trying to avoid pulling the motor. Plus, for the cost of welding, gasket and labor, it would be cheaper to fix in place.
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Old 04-20-2012, 05:52 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stein View Post
Just a guess, but I suspect the OP is trying to avoid pulling the motor. Plus, for the cost of welding, gasket and labor, it would be cheaper to fix in place.
Exactly. I could pick up a used pan for $50 shipped that is in perfectly good shape, but I'd rather not go through the process of having the motor pulled to fix stripped threads.

I purchased the time-sert kit last night, ran me $120 shipped, but I will only be using 1 of the 5 time-serts included in the package, and will just sell off the entire kit with 1 less insert to try to make some money back.
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Old 04-20-2012, 06:45 PM   #6
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Be careful drilling the tap drill size because, as you can see in the pic above, the pickup is very close. You can wrap the drill bit in a bunch of layers of tape to form a depth stop so that it won't get sucked into the hole and subsequently into the pickup. Might even want to layer on the tape pretty thick and even throw a hose clamp around the tape so it doesn't just push the tape up.
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Old 04-20-2012, 07:07 PM   #7
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fumoto oil drain valve and a bunch of thread sealer tape.
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Old 04-20-2012, 07:50 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stein View Post
Be careful drilling the tap drill size because, as you can see in the pic above, the pickup is very close. You can wrap the drill bit in a bunch of layers of tape to form a depth stop so that it won't get sucked into the hole and subsequently into the pickup. Might even want to layer on the tape pretty thick and even throw a hose clamp around the tape so it doesn't just push the tape up.
Yeah, I am going to measure the depth of the time-sert and put a line of tape on the drill bit that is only about 1mm longer than the time-sert so I don't go any further than I need to. I am doing everything by hand too, no power tools, just a tap wrench.
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Old 04-20-2012, 08:09 PM   #9
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Would a Helicoil work for this? Cheaper than the TimeSert. Just wondering.
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Old 04-22-2012, 01:01 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smbstyle View Post
I am doing everything by hand too, no power tools, just a tap wrench.
You realize that you are going to have to drill out the old threads quite a bit to get up to the tap drill size for the new tap for the timesert, right? I don't know if you can do it by hand. I'd suspect at least 1/8", maybe 3/16" bigger.
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Old 04-22-2012, 11:59 AM   #11
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Helicoil wouldn't seal.
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Old 04-22-2012, 12:49 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stein View Post
You realize that you are going to have to drill out the old threads quite a bit to get up to the tap drill size for the new tap for the timesert, right? I don't know if you can do it by hand. I'd suspect at least 1/8", maybe 3/16" bigger.
Well, with the oversized drain plug being put in as a band-aid, and a OEM M14x1.5 drain plug just falls out, I'm thinking that the hole was widened enough to get the drill bit started by hand.

If not, yeah I will be making sure I'm super careful with a cordless drill and will be using plenty of tape to mark a stopping point.
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Old 04-23-2012, 01:12 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by curly View Post
Helicoil wouldn't seal.
How much of the seal is created by the threads interlocking with the pan, versus the head of the drain plug against the pan? I have always assumed it's a bit of both, but mostly the head/pan contact.
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Old 04-23-2012, 09:48 PM   #14
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Well the time-sert repair is complete. The kit was extremely straight forward, very easy to use, everything was done by hand including the drilling out. I used a ton of grease on the bit and tap which really helped pick up all of the metal shavings, and I ran a 4 quarts of fresh oil through the engine to flush out any shavings that dropped into the pan. I then put the drain plug in, filled it with oil I ran the car for about 15 minutes, checked for any leaks (not a single drop or weep) and will be changing the oil filter in the AM. I plan to do another oil and filter change in about 500 miles or so just to make sure.

The time-sert looks great, very clean and almost looks OEM. I've got the mechanical aptitude of a 12 year old girl, and I'd say this was probably one of my easiest "repair" projects.

Not a cheap kit, $120 total, but definitely worth it to do it properly, and saving the time and money on pulling the engine to replace the oil pan.

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Old 04-23-2012, 09:51 PM   #15
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Jesus, between the time sert kit and 3 oil changes within 500 miles, I would have just pulled the engine. Then again I have the mechanical skills of a 57y.o. bauce and have already done it 5 times.

Nice job though, it does indeed look great.
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Old 04-23-2012, 09:57 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by curly View Post
Jesus, between the time sert kit and 3 oil changes within 500 miles, I would have just pulled the engine. Then again I have the mechanical skills of a 57y.o. bauce and have already done it 5 times.

Nice job though, it does indeed look great.
lol, may be a bit overkill, and probably could get away with just changing the filter now and leaving it alone until the next normal interval, but I'm OCD.

Since the kit comes with 5 total inserts, and there are 4 left now, I'm planning on selling it to someone else in need, so I'd only have about $60 or so wrapped up in the repair between 2 gallons of Rotella T6, a filter, and the difference for what I paid.
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Old 09-13-2012, 12:49 PM   #17
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Which kit do I get?
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Old 09-13-2012, 03:01 PM   #18
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I'll buy the rest of the kit from you!
Send to:
Vince Russell
1020 Grass Valley Hwy
Auburn CA 95603

I need it as soon as.. You know.
Do you paypal? Plus shipping of course.

Thanks!
Vince
Quote:
Originally Posted by smbstyle View Post
lol, may be a bit overkill, and probably could get away with just changing the filter now and leaving it alone until the next normal interval, but I'm OCD.

Since the kit comes with 5 total inserts, and there are 4 left now, I'm planning on selling it to someone else in need, so I'd only have about $60 or so wrapped up in the repair between 2 gallons of Rotella T6, a filter, and the difference for what I paid.
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Old 09-14-2012, 12:10 PM   #19
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Bump.
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Old 09-14-2012, 12:49 PM   #20
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SMBStyle hasn't been on in about a week, and I realize you can't PM him yet because of your post count, so I sent him an email to let him know you want to buy it.
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