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Old 08-01-2020, 01:52 AM   #1
alexmartynyuk
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Default Recent Darton/LA Sleeve users

Hey everyone, it seems lately all the higher HP Subaruís are running a stock sleeve closed deck block. Iím working on slowly building an ej257 and would like to possibly push some decent power in the future. The block Iím working on has been previously modified by outfront and was their ďgrocery getterĒ package. Long story short it spun a bearing and now Iím looking at either having it closed decked or sleeved. The block has been honed out to 99.75 Manley pistons and the cylinders have some light scoring so would have to go next size up. For what Iím planning to do in the future power wise, even if the block was closed decked the liners will be on borrowed time at 100mm so I have been considering getting the block sleeved. I have been looking into Darton and LA. Iím concerned with the sleeves dropping, I talked to Dave at LA Sleeves and even he said there is always a chance of it happening. Is there anyone running sleeved blocks these days and if so how are they holding up? I did some searching and was able to find some info on sleeves but from like 9 years ago, canít seem to find any recent feedback/sleeve users. Input from people with first hand experience would be much appreciated!
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Old 08-01-2020, 06:48 PM   #2
Barney145
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2 reasons for sleeves dropping. First, the counterbore for the flange should be machined with an end mill using circular interpolation on a CNC mill, not simply a 90 degree cutter in a boring bar. This guarantees that the counterbore is dead flat. Second, after the sleeves are installed by whatever method the shop uses and the block is back to room temp, they need to be final seated with deck plates before surfacing them flush with the deck. Pushing on the sleeves with a press does not do it, they need to be pulled in with plates. The sleeves will always end up at least .002" higher than they theoretically should after the block's temp stabilizes. This goes for any flanged sleeve in an aluminum block.
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Old 08-01-2020, 07:06 PM   #3
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Nope, "all of the higher HP Subaru's" aren't running stock sleeve closed deck blocks. Darton is also not the only sleeve available for Subarus.

This is the impression some get because all of the sleeved people aren't regularly posting to brag about their sleeved blocks. Some closed deck modded stock sleeved block owners however, are more likely to try and prove that they saved money without sleeves because closed deck modded blocks are really all you need.
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Old 08-01-2020, 08:42 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Barney145 View Post
2 reasons for sleeves dropping. First, the counterbore for the flange should be machined with an end mill using circular interpolation on a CNC mill, not simply a 90 degree cutter in a boring bar. This guarantees that the counterbore is dead flat. Second, after the sleeves are installed by whatever method the shop uses and the block is back to room temp, they need to be final seated with deck plates before surfacing them flush with the deck. Pushing on the sleeves with a press does not do it, they need to be pulled in with plates. The sleeves will always end up at least .002" higher than they theoretically should after the block's temp stabilizes. This goes for any flanged sleeve in an aluminum block.
Correct, Dave also said that even if done correctly they can still drop due to the block itself not having enough support in the ej257. He mentioned that not all block castings were of the same ďhardnessĒ. But I guess it is what it is.
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Old 08-01-2020, 08:44 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2slofouru View Post
Nope, "all of the higher HP Subaru's" aren't running stock sleeve closed deck blocks. Darton is also not the only sleeve available for Subarus.

This is the impression some get because all of the sleeved people aren't regularly posting to brag about their sleeved blocks. Some closed deck modded stock sleeved block owners however, are more likely to try and prove that they saved money without sleeves because closed deck modded blocks are really all you need.
Yeah I wish more people running sleeved engines would post their results or check in every now and then to see how theyíre holding up. As for sleeves I know that Darton isnít the only ones available, Iíve heard of benson and some others too but it seems like Darton is cheaper or easier to get a hold of, LA quoted me a month out because theyíre out of stock.
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Old 08-02-2020, 01:47 AM   #6
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Larry's built mine with AEBS sleeves. I had a choice of Darton, LA, or AEBS. Of course the engine is still on the stand, plenty of work on the rest of the car before I can install it.
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Old 08-02-2020, 07:38 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by 2slofouru View Post
Larry's built mine with AEBS sleeves. I had a choice of Darton, LA, or AEBS. Of course the engine is still on the stand, plenty of work on the rest of the car before I can install it.
Oh nice! What is your goal for the build, as in power wise? Any particular reason you went with AEBS over LA?
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Old 08-02-2020, 08:14 PM   #8
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Oh nice! What is your goal for the build, as in power wise? Any particular reason you went with AEBS over LA?
Around 500whp at first, to see how the rest of the car holds up. A machinist there recommended the aebs when I told them my goals. The block is also pinned with 14mm studs and the deck is stainless o-ring'ed.

Not sure what my clutch will handle and want to drive it for a while to sort out any bugs.
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Old 08-02-2020, 11:16 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by 2slofouru View Post
Around 500whp at first, to see how the rest of the car holds up. A machinist there recommended the aebs when I told them my goals. The block is also pinned with 14mm studs and the deck is stainless o-ring'ed.

Not sure what my clutch will handle and want to drive it for a while to sort out any bugs.
Got ya, basically same here. Got an fp red and planning to go 6266 or 6466 later. What pistons and rods are you using?
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Old 08-02-2020, 11:36 PM   #10
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Got ya, basically same here. Got an fp red and planning to go 6266 or 6466 later. What pistons and rods are you using?
Manley 2618 pistons with upgraded pins and Manley I beam rods.
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Old 08-03-2020, 01:47 AM   #11
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Manley 2618 pistons with upgraded pins and Manley I beam rods.
Platinum series? Iím looking at the JE ultras or time attacks and for rods considering Manley I beams, wiseco boostlines, saenz 4340 I beams, carillo pro h are expensive but sure would b nice to get those, callies are nice too but really expensive, also considered the cheaper BC Proh625+ as theyíre rated at over 250hp per cylinder I just canít find any people using them.
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Old 08-03-2020, 03:49 PM   #12
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I run Darton sleeves in my car, it made 500whp on a gen 1 [email protected]

I have been planning to turn things up more but have too many other projects plus building a house so I wanted to leave the "give it all the boost" for when I could pay to fix it "if" something happened. LOL

These sleeves are relatively new to my build and it preformed at that same level on stock sleeves, I just installed them for future boost increases or turbo upgrades.
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Old 08-03-2020, 04:52 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scuby04STi View Post
I run Darton sleeves in my car, it made 500whp on a gen 1 [email protected]

I have been planning to turn things up more but have too many other projects plus building a house so I wanted to leave the "give it all the boost" for when I could pay to fix it "if" something happened. LOL

These sleeves are relatively new to my build and it preformed at that same level on stock sleeves, I just installed them for future boost increases or turbo upgrades.
Thanks for the input! How long have they been in the block? Did you pin the sleeves? Oringed? Stepped deck?
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Old 08-03-2020, 06:25 PM   #14
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Quote:
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Thanks for the input! How long have they been in the block? Did you pin the sleeves? Oringed? Stepped deck?
They have been in the block for 2 years but it took a few months to start driving it again (was finishing up some misc stuff).

I am not 100% sure if they are pinned but they are not O-ringed or anything special. I know the shop I used does a LOT of sleeves so I honestly just did what I always do and leave everything up to them. It's their window I would throw the block into if it wasn't correct. LOL

One thing I feel should be mentioned was that we used a new set of case halves rather then using my old block as to get the most life out of things seeing this block will likely be the last one I will ever need for the car we wanted to be sure all the threads and fasteners would be ideal to start with.
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Old 08-03-2020, 07:53 PM   #15
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I'm a big fan of Darton Sleeved blocks. I've used at least 8 on shop cars over the last 8 years and have never had one drop.

Closed deck saves you money up front, sleeves saves you from replacing blocks when you need to refresh/rebuild because they are so much stronger and way way more material future for bore/hone.
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Old 08-03-2020, 08:59 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by KillerBMotorsport View Post
I'm a big fan of Darton Sleeved blocks. I've used at least 8 on shop cars over the last 8 years and have never had one drop.

Closed deck saves you money up front, sleeves saves you from replacing blocks when you need to refresh/rebuild because they are so much stronger and way way more material future for bore/hone.
Thanks for the input! How much power do your shop cars run? Are they drag only, street cars, road race? Thanks again to everyones input!
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Old 08-04-2020, 07:03 AM   #17
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Thanks for the input! How much power do your shop cars run? Are they drag only, street cars, road race? Thanks again to everyones input!
The highest WHP we've run is 760whp on a mustang dyno. As far as events, all of the above. The most grueling from the block's perspective would probably be auto-X. I'm pretty aggressive and brake boost a lot of the coarse typically. I've never been on a road course with a really l-o-n-g straight, but did enjoy running the car at 1/2 mile events.
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Old 08-04-2020, 02:44 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by KillerBMotorsport View Post
The highest WHP we've run is 760whp on a mustang dyno. As far as events, all of the above. The most grueling from the block's perspective would probably be auto-X. I'm pretty aggressive and brake boost a lot of the coarse typically. I've never been on a road course with a really l-o-n-g straight, but did enjoy running the car at 1/2 mile events.
That 760whp car did it have pinned sleeves? Do you pin the sleeves on any of your cars? My max goal is to maybe be able to hit 800whp dynojet. And again thanks for the input!
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Old 08-04-2020, 08:29 PM   #19
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For that power level, most blocks have:

-Sleeves
-Pinned mains
-O-ringed decks

There are people who run closed deck modded blocks at that level, but I'm not sure how many of those have pinned mains and I've heard some mention trying to o ring the deck but they usually stick with high quality head gaskets or "fire ring" hybrid type headgaskets. There are some who make it a few years and some who crack the oem liners much sooner.. Blame shifts around to this or that but I'd rather stick with aftermarket sleeves, since cracked liners can be eliminated from the blame equation. I used a very professional shop with tons of experience, so my only concerns will be tuning and my installation of externals and setup of safety mechanisms in the ecu.

If I were to only be looking for a max of around 500whp and never planned to go any higher, I'd be confident running a closed deck setup and pinned mains with quality h beam rods and 2618 alloy pistons. This is just my opinion, based on what I've read on the forums since I've joined, what I've learned in A&P training, and my limited understanding of metallurgy and thermodynamics.
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Old 08-05-2020, 01:35 AM   #20
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Another issue with sleeves is head gasket sealing, ring slides around on sleeves vs aluminum it pushes into
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Old 08-05-2020, 09:50 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alexmartynyuk View Post
That 760whp car did it have pinned sleeves? Do you pin the sleeves on any of your cars? My max goal is to maybe be able to hit 800whp dynojet. And again thanks for the input!
I'm not familiar with pinned sleeves?

Quote:
Originally Posted by 2slofouru View Post
For that power level, most blocks have:

-Sleeves
-Pinned mains
-O-ringed decks
I never pinned the mains because all the pinning options back then were not actually precise enough to prevent shuffling between the block halves. At least not reducing it enough to matter. The other thing was that there was never any issues with the mains using the 625 ARPs. Signs of shuffling never resulted in anything.

Being close to Darton East, they are now making available a pressed together pinned mains which should actually do the job of preventing shuffling. I'm not doing any monster builds anytime soon, so I doubt I'll put it into use myself in the foreseeable future.

Keep in mind, this is just my own personal experience. I'm sure there are builders out there who have proven counter points to pinning.

On the o-ring groove, it's a must-have in my opinion. Even for the lower power stuff (say 400whp) we use it.
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Old 08-05-2020, 01:02 PM   #22
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I'm not familiar with pinned sleeves?



I never pinned the mains because all the pinning options back then were not actually precise enough to prevent shuffling between the block halves. At least not reducing it enough to matter. The other thing was that there was never any issues with the mains using the 625 ARPs. Signs of shuffling never resulted in anything.

Being close to Darton East, they are now making available a pressed together pinned mains which should actually do the job of preventing shuffling. I'm not doing any monster builds anytime soon, so I doubt I'll put it into use myself in the foreseeable future.

Keep in mind, this is just my own personal experience. I'm sure there are builders out there who have proven counter points to pinning.

On the o-ring groove, it's a must-have in my opinion. Even for the lower power stuff (say 400whp) we use it.
So what I mean by pinned sleeves is what I have seen done is solid dowel pins have been installed in the deck to help prevent the sleeves shifting, not from dropping but from shifting. As for this block one thing I know for sure thatís gonna happen is the mains will be pinned, Iím not sure what case bolts to use but either way the mainline will be rebored. Still undecided as to what sleeves to run and if stepped deck or not and to oring or not. The machine shop Iím working with has modern rottler equipment and seems like a very capable shop. I would send the block out but shipping is going to be expensive both ways plus not being able to see the work done in person is an issue for me, since with this machine shop I can actually be present for every step.
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Old Today, 01:25 AM   #23
alexmartynyuk
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Any other long term sleeve users on here? I think i'm set on BC6606 rods, still deciding on what sleeves and what pistons to run.
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