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Old 07-05-2009, 07:55 PM   #1
STi Mikey
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Default Built motor guys who have aquired significant milage

Hey guys,

I'm about to start ordering components so that I can do a minor build for my DD STi. As far as the block goes, stock rods with wiesco pistons (stock size with a quick honing of the cylinder walls) and race bearings will just about do it. Of course Ill get the ARP headstuds and either OEM or cosworth head gaskets. I may do some BC cams with no other head head work, but that would just be extra.

I'm a firm believer in making more with less. Its an embarrassment seeing people go low 11's with 20+ thousand into a car. I have had great track results with the run of the mill OEM block and turbo charger. I just want to stay simple, and reliable. My stock block now has 52k on it, most of the miles are of extreme abuse. The car for the last few months has been eating oil so I figure I have a minor ring-land failure (even though the compression was tested to be 145-135-145-135 and the car makes terrific power).

I drive 100 miles day and can not count on my fingers and tows how many times I actually hit full boost. The reason I bring this up is simple. Every one I see building motors beats the crap out of the car and is in for a rebuild in a few thousand miles. They tell their tuner to push it even though warned not to, yada yada and back for more $$$$'s later.

I want to do this once, as preventative maintenance. I want to track the car and drive spiritedly on the way to my office with no BS. If my stock block has lasted this long, I expect that my built block would last even longer. If this doesnt seem feasible, taking into account 350-400whp (dynotjet) everyday and 400-450whp for the track, then a stock block goes in and the car goes up for sale.

Anyone have 30-50k on a built block that has not been refreshed 46 times?
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Last edited by STi Mikey; 07-05-2009 at 08:01 PM.
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Old 07-05-2009, 07:59 PM   #2
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Old 07-05-2009, 08:02 PM   #3
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lol never mind
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Old 07-05-2009, 08:07 PM   #4
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I thought you were going to sell the sti?

That was a temporary figment of my imagination. It is a terrific DD, and has never let me down from cruising on the highway to extreme track abuse. Its sexy now too , never thought I would get into looks but slamming the thing with the 04 tail lights and a carbon trunk + wax on a black STizz = SEX.

I've bought many cars in the past but this is the first one I took off of the floor, brand new. Sentimental I guess
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Old 07-05-2009, 08:14 PM   #5
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i'm also very curious. most threads i read about built motors seem that these motors are being rebuilt ALL the time.
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Old 07-05-2009, 08:26 PM   #6
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i'm also very curious. most threads i read about built motors seem that these motors are being rebuilt ALL the time.
Exactly. My buddy John has gone through 2 stock blocks, and 2 blocks with pistons, with a stock turbo and then the last motor on an SZ55. He just spent 15k on the "ultimate build" Basically there is not much more he could possibly do motor wize, fully sleeved, o ring'd, ported polished, 280 cams, and so on (its a fully capable of 800whp).

For his sake, I pray that motor lasts, for ever. He is going to be on the stock turbo for the next month or two then he plans on maxing out a red for 10's with a stock location turbo, then on from there. If that motor fails, that is 15k out of his pocket, and it was cash. He does well, but thats alot of money for people in their early 20's regardless. I do not want to spend 15k on a motor that can supposedly handle 800whp, to run 400-500 just to be safe. I want to spend 3k on a motor that can handle 500 and run 450.
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Old 07-05-2009, 08:27 PM   #7
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That was a temporary figment of my imagination. It is a terrific DD, and has never let me down from cruising on the highway to extreme track abuse. Its sexy now too , never thought I would get into looks but slamming the thing with the 04 tail lights and a carbon trunk + wax on a black STizz = SEX.

I've bought many cars in the past but this is the first one I took off of the floor, brand new. Sentimental I guess
pics?? and when are you getting into the 11s?

Build motors don't last as long as stockers , but 30-50K should be doable, I am at 4K with mine
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Old 07-05-2009, 08:52 PM   #8
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why do they not last as long? my guess is because people beat on them!! am i right? if drvin right woulsnt it last longer than a stocker?
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Old 07-05-2009, 09:01 PM   #9
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Quote:
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why do they not last as long? my guess is because people beat on them!! am i right? if drvin right woulsnt it last longer than a stocker?
Perhaps also because millions of dollars and dozens of attempts are made on production motors to ensure durability, whereas built motors are often one-off creations. Granted the individual components may be superior (in some ways) to OEM, but they haven't been developped together. Plus the fact that production engines are continuously refined year to year to get things just right.
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Old 07-05-2009, 09:22 PM   #10
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It matters who you buy the engine from, if you buy a built engine lets say from cosworth or axis you are going to get better returns, mileage wise IMO than if joe blow down the street builds the engine. Ive seen built engines last 10,000 miles, I aslo seen built engines last 70k. There are so many variables that go into it.
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Old 07-05-2009, 09:29 PM   #11
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It matters who you buy the engine from, if you buy a built engine lets say from cosworth or axis you are going to get better returns, mileage wise IMO than if joe blow down the street builds the engine. Ive seen built engines last 10,000 miles, I aslo seen built engines last 70k. There are so many variables that go into it.
Yeah, I would be happy with a stout 70k before refresh. I know some very experienced subaru builders and I would be confident in the work. I just dont want to be that guy who blows his built motor after 3-5k then find my self down the line a year later on motor # 5 with no more savings and a credit card bill. Trust me, I have seen this time after time.
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Old 07-05-2009, 09:32 PM   #12
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This thread is a good idea. This would be good to see what kind of reliability we are getting out of a rebuilt block and see what works and what doesn't.

Im at a touch above 4500 on my new built motor (wiseco 100mm's, ACL coated bearings, stock con rods and crank, 11mm oil pump, arp studs, cometic HG's). So far so good. Doesn't burn any oil, and doesn't make any funky slapping noises.
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Old 07-05-2009, 09:36 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by SR20steve View Post
This thread is a good idea. This would be good to see what kind of reliability we are getting out of a rebuilt block and see what works and what doesn't.

Im at a touch above 4500 on my new built motor (wiseco 100mm's, ACL coated bearings, stock con rods and crank, 11mm oil pump, arp studs, cometic HG's). So far so good. Doesn't burn any oil, and doesn't make any funky slapping noises.
Awsome, pretty much exactly what I have in the plans. Keep us updated!!
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Old 07-05-2009, 10:31 PM   #14
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Wirelessly posted (LG Voyager: Mozilla/4.1 (compatible; MSIE 6.0; ) 400x240 LGE VX10000)

This is the same boat I'm in. I lost my #4 cylinder and recently got a motor with some forged pistons and upgraded bearings installed. It was expensive no doubt and I'll probably try my had at building my own next time around, but I really, really hope this new one lasts more than 10k. Hell, It better last 40k (2 years at my current driving rate). If not, I might be really pissed.

I think part of the short lifespan reputation is due to people running the piss out of built motors at 400whp plus power levels, but I don't know.
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Old 07-05-2009, 10:36 PM   #15
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a guess..

there is no answer to this question...

buy a cosworth long block, install it in your sti, run it at stock levels, it will last as long (im guessing) as a OEM sti motor..

buy a cosworth long block, take it to the 'mad tuner', put a giant turbo on it go for 900 hp.. it blows up on the dyno..

probably the most interesting question, and one that will never be answered is... based on some standard 'built block' base.. say stock sti CR, forged pistons blueprinted bored out with boring bar, crank journals align bored, heads cleaned up, some standard hi-po cams, what level of tuning on pump 93 could you achieve and more or less guarantee stock longevity?

this is the question i would like answered. and it never will be... but im guessing something between 350 and 400 hp at the crank..

lets see a tuner offer a 3yr/36k warranty on a motor package (includes all the necessary parts.. turbo, exhaust, tuning, intercooler etc) and at what level of performance....
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Old 07-05-2009, 10:39 PM   #16
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Wirelessly posted (LG Voyager: Mozilla/4.1 (compatible; MSIE 6.0; ) 400x240 LGE VX10000)

This is the same boat I'm in. I lost my #4 cylinder and recently got a motor with some forged pistons and upgraded bearings installed. It was expensive no doubt and I'll probably try my had at building my own next time around, but I really, really hope this new one lasts more than 10k. Hell, It better last 40k (2 years at my current driving rate). If not, I might be really pissed.

I think part of the short lifespan reputation is due to people running the piss out of built motors at 400whp plus power levels, but I don't know.
Well I wish you luck. I currently drive 30k/yr give or take 2k. I want at least 2 years of hard driving out of a built motor, if not 3. Not sure if I will act soon or not, but it sucks putting a quart in every day or two. Just to see how my car performs today I sprinted with a 330whp STi this past weekend. I figured if the car was down on any power it would show here. I pulled about 6 cars on him with my hta68 turbo but was puffing some smoke. He told me it was dark though, like a turbo diesel lighting up the highway. I thought I smelled a faint scent of oil, but im guessing its a combo of running a tad rich and burniin some oil.
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Old 07-05-2009, 11:05 PM   #17
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my setup will be together soon. just missing a few coolant lines. I'm running an ej257, acl bearings, cp 100mm, stock rods and crank. This will be run with a vf37 twinscroll setup. by no means extraordinary power. i certainly hope it lasts passed 20k.
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Old 07-05-2009, 11:09 PM   #18
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Very basic, because I don't fully understand it, but....

More power means more heat. More heat requires a larger piston to bore clearance. A larger clearance means more piston rock/slap. That in-turn wears out the rings and skirts faster.

OEM piston clearance is less than .001 thousands on many motors. (forgive me if I don't know a STIs exactly) A typical forged piston clearance is .002 - .004, but every builder has his "formula".

So "non-rocking" OEM pistons have rings that can last 200K+ miles. Forged, but "rocking", pistons have the same rings, but usually cannot last nearly as long.

Oil clearances on bearings have different, but similier, life-shortening comprimises on thier clearance specs also.

As much as I hate to admit it, but if your looking for close to OEM durability and 500HP, look at what the OEMs do. Almost all factory motors in that power range are V8 or better because they can distibute that kind of "load" over twice as many pistons, rods, bores and bearings.
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Old 07-05-2009, 11:18 PM   #19
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Very basic, because I don't fully understand it, but....

More power means more heat. More heat requires a larger piston to bore clearance. A larger clearance means more piston rock/slap. That in-turn wears out the rings and skirts faster.

OEM piston clearance is less than .001 thousands on many motors. (forgive me if I don't know a STIs exactly) A typical forged piston clearance is .002 - .004, but every builder has his "formula".

So "non-rocking" OEM pistons have rings that can last 200K+ miles. Forged, but "rocking", pistons have the same rings, but usually cannot last nearly as long.

Oil clearances on bearings have different, but similier, life-shortening comprimises on thier clearance specs also.

As much as I hate to admit it, but if your looking for close to OEM durability and 500HP, look at what the OEMs do. Almost all factory motors in that power range are V8 or better because they can distibute that kind of "load" over twice as many pistons, rods, bores and bearings.
While this is all true, the stock wrx and sti pistons are garbage. There were cases of people needing replacements at 1k. Subaru wont go to a stock forged piston, but i feel if you match forged pistons to rehoned oem block that they should have an outstanding life span (granted on a good tune). My budy has 2k on his motor now, I hope it lasts another 100k, but we will see. Meanwhile, i hope many post on their succeses and failures with builds and about the components, good or bad, used.
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Old 07-05-2009, 11:35 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by Crazy_pilot View Post
Perhaps also because millions of dollars and dozens of attempts are made on production motors to ensure durability, whereas built motors are often one-off creations. Granted the individual components may be superior (in some ways) to OEM, but they haven't been developped together. Plus the fact that production engines are continuously refined year to year to get things just right.
No, when you build a motor with forged pistons and bigger P/W clearances you get more bore wear on cold start and your rings take more of a beating than with tight clearance cast pistons. In time, with a built motor you will see leak down numbers going down and you will know its time to re-ring.

I have 25K+ on mine so far.

Last edited by kellygnsd; 07-05-2009 at 11:42 PM.
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Old 07-06-2009, 10:36 AM   #21
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Why didn't you just ask me!? Haha...

I have a bit over 40,000 miles on my engine build that I literally beat the piss out of and drive EVERYWHERE.

I have a very simple setup as well;

CP Pistons 99.5mm with a Hone on the cylinders, stock bore.

Manley H Beam Rods, they come with upgraded rod bolts.

Crower Valvesprings/Retainers for some security spinning to 7400 on a daily basis.

ARP Head studs Cosworth Race Bearings, and STOCK headgaskets.

100% completely stock oil pump.
.

These parts have been incredibly reliable for me and my machine. I could not be happier.

That's like 1400$ in parts... So plainly, you can see you don't need to have a 10,000$ engine build to go fast.


I would also advise you to keep your stock camshafts rather than get BC's.
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Old 07-06-2009, 10:40 AM   #22
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I think most of us underestimate the forces, power and stresses put on a block when making 400+ whp. Even with rods, crank and everything done the stresses involved are very exponential considering for the most part we are using stock piston sizes (or close to it). If you read an engine tuning/building book there are a thousand calculations on to how to size up an engine. And really for most of us we are creating our own oddity builds that are taking that perfectly tuned machine further and further out of spec as to how Subaru designed it to work.

That being said...
My current build is a EJ22t w/Phase 1 EJ25 crank, and Wiseco Pistons, and custom rods. So I'm pretty much in the same boat as most of you guys :P Luckily I am not modding my DD so therefore if it blows up I can still go to work.
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Old 07-06-2009, 11:18 AM   #23
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Why didn't you just ask me!? Haha...

I have a bit over 40,000 miles on my engine build that I literally beat the piss out of and drive EVERYWHERE.

I have a very simple setup as well;

CP Pistons 99.5mm with a Hone on the cylinders, stock bore.

Manley H Beam Rods, they come with upgraded rod bolts.

Crower Valvesprings/Retainers for some security spinning to 7400 on a daily basis.

ARP Head studs Cosworth Race Bearings, and STOCK headgaskets.

100% completely stock oil pump.
.

These parts have been incredibly reliable for me and my machine. I could not be happier.

That's like 1400$ in parts... So plainly, you can see you don't need to have a 10,000$ engine build to go fast.


I would also advise you to keep your stock camshafts rather than get BC's.
Why do you recommend the stock cams? Just curious.
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Old 07-06-2009, 11:20 AM   #24
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For one, the brian crower cams do little in terms of peak power gains compared to what you lose under the curve. Why would you shift your powerband to the right on a car that is already desperate for oil pump at 7400rpm?
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Old 07-06-2009, 11:26 AM   #25
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I'm not really a fan of the BC cams but i still think you can do better that stock. My cosi/kelfords couldn't be better suited to my setup but every setup is different. Logging this morning and plugging in to airboy I'm still making power out to 7300 and I really haven't noticed much loss down low but I've never driven a stock cam 3076 before.
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