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Old 04-27-2010, 01:15 AM   #1
Scooby Newbie
Member#: 149771
Join Date: May 2007
Location: IL
2010 WRX Sedan

Default Replace or rebuild engine?

OK so recently I obtained a 97 Legacy GT for free...yes that's right $0. I helped a friend do a lot of work to his wrx...and he signed the title over to me for all the times I helped him out or as he puts it...saved his butt. He's a good guy and I was glad to help...but this was too good of a deal to pass on.

OK so the kicker to this is that the engine has a spun rod bearing. Found some pretty good size metal shavings in the oil pan. So I pulled the engine.

I am not wanting to do anything that is going to cost me a lot of money (so no sti swap for the time being)...would I be better off to rebuild the engine or just buy an engine from a junkyard or something? I have never rebuilt a motor....so keeping that in mind any suggestions? If I buy one from a junkyard is the motor I pulled worth anything in it's current state?

oh and btw...I have a short block out of a 03 wrx that also had a spun rod bearing (which was also given to me by another buddy)....maybe rebuild that and do a hybrid with the legacy heads and such?

Any advice or suggestions would be greatly appreciated!
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Old 04-27-2010, 06:39 PM   #2
Scooby Guru
Member#: 4021
Join Date: Feb 2001
Chapter/Region: NESIC
Location: Natick, MA USA
1999 Legacy GT Ltd
Quick Silver Metallic


My vote would be go for the junk yard motor.
Any pre 2000 Legacy EJ25 motor will work, although you could also go with a pre 1999 EJ22 motor as well.

If you are pulling an EJ25 motor from an Impreza RS or a Forester You need to make sure these motors are from a pre 1999 model year (Unlike the Legacy they were manufactured in Japan, where they swapped to the Phase II MAP EJ25 motor a year earlier).

Usually they will give you a 30 day warranty, although it would be even better if you could listen to it run and possibly do a quick compression check.

It might not be a bad idea, given you will have no service history on the motor, to do the following:

New timing belt, tensioners, cam seals, water pump, thermostat, belts and hoses... maybe valve cover gaskets if there appears to be a leak.

It maybe a little extreme but replacing the head gaskets with the motor removed from the car could save you a fair amount of grief and aggravation down the road.
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