OT: dead a6qa

Bill Shaw b.shaw at comcast.net
Sat Feb 2 14:42:07 PST 2008

On topic for a change :-)

I spent the afternoon tearing down the wife's 2.8L 30V engine.  My 
original plan after it gave up the ghost was to just find another engine 
and stick it in to get it back on the road quick (and get her out of my 
Z28!) but after 2 bad engine purchases 'quick' has long gone by.  The 
first engine was a manual (wtf?  Why do they make a different crank for 
a manual???) The second engine was fubar'ed by the PO,  closed up then 
sold to me as a good engine.  The end of the driver's side cam was 
broken so there was no way to set the timing.  I have to give Tom's 4n 
(ebay) credit though,  they gave me back my cash without a problem.  
They went and got the second one as a replacement for the manual from 
somewhere else,  then ate it when I discovered it was wasted.

SOoooo,  the next plan was to finish tearing Amy's dead engine apart, 
hone the scratched cylinders,  replace bearings & gaskets and put it 
back in.  I got deep enough into it today to see that the original 
problem with this engine was just filth.  The oil pan had a thick layer 
of sludge,  there is grit everywhere, the pistons tops and combustion 
chambers in the heads are heavily carboned,  so thick there were large 
flakes on the piston tops. It looks like the flakes on the driver's side 
cylinders broke free and wedged between the cylinder walls and the 
pistons causing some light scoring that caused the compression loss.  
The rod bearings look like they've been sand blasted,  all rough and 
gouged.  Fortunately the soft bearing material took the brunt of it,  
the rod journals look good.  The crank's still in the block but I expect 
the mains to look like the rods when I get them out later this evening.. 

I may need to source some pistons,  at least the 3 on the driver's 
side.  Anyone have any 2.8L 30V pistons laying around?  I would also be 
willing to go back to plan A if anyone has a complete good engine with 
less than 80k miles they'd like to sell.


'99 a6qa (lock carrier in service position)
'94 Z28/A4 (my winter car,  but SHE's driving it now!)
'84 928 5.0L Vortech/749 (now my winter car !!????!?!)
'84 Mondial Cab. (on the block)

PS - enough on-topic talk -  In the never-ending quest for more 
horsepower I've decided to sell my beloved '84 Ferrari Mondial Cab. (one 
of 629 produced) to finance my next adventure. Details can be found here 
if anyone is interested:

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