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New head needed for my S3 - brand new, or second hand?

Discussion in 'A3/S3 Forum (8L Chassis)' started by Greggers, Jul 23, 2007.

  1. Greggers
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    Greggers Member

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    [Jul 23, 2007]
    The engine's out of my S3, and the bottom end is salvageable (had no compression in 3 or 4, v little in 1 & 2, there was loads of sh!te in the sump - metal & plastic (latter from the cambelt tensioner, which got destroyed)), thankfully....the head, however, is mince (8 valves bent).

    I've been quoted £1416 incl vat, for a brand new head (exchanged with mine), with new cams, plus £100 for head bolts & gaskets. I've also seen an apparently 18,000 mile head for £450.

    Now, there's lots of other work being done on the car to get it running again (timing belt & kit, turbo re-build, new clutch, oil pump, re-map, wheel re-furb....phew!), so, do I save a grand, or is buying second hand heads just too dodgy?

    Appreciate any advice, in a bit of a quandry...


    Thanks,
    greggers
    #1
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  3. nickelvery
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    nickelvery RS4 B5 380bhp

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    [Jul 23, 2007]
    if that was me I would think about doing upgrades, like internals and bigger turbo because you have the excuse to do so.

    That's just me though!!!
    #2
  4. nickelvery
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    nickelvery RS4 B5 380bhp

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    [Jul 23, 2007]
    Also what happened to your S3?
    #3
  5. Greggers
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    Greggers Member

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    [Jul 23, 2007]
    Hmmm....I know what you mean mate, but I only bought the car 2mths ago, managed 112 miles, then it gave up :(
    So, a little tight for funds, although not so much that I'd be silly enough to not have some fun with it while it's out. So far all I'm looking at is a map, possibly a hybrid, but not much else (no-one's really been able to give me many tips - was getting the impression that 270bhp is the upper limit without low-comping or something??)

    And, sniff, dunno if I could repeat the story of its demise, so I'll post the link instead ;) http://www.audi-sport.net/vb/showthread.php?t=40806


    Thanks,
    greg
    #4
  6. nickelvery
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    nickelvery RS4 B5 380bhp

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    [Jul 23, 2007]
    **** I feel for you mate, no what I'm going to say so I won't say it!!

    I just think, that as you have the opertunity you might aswell put uprated pistons and other internals. As I know that they are not very strong.

    It can't be much more expensive than getting all the work done.

    I know loads of guys on here will have loads of answers.
    #5
  7. dan_a3
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    dan_a3 Member

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    [Jul 24, 2007]
    Are you sure when you was quoted for a brand new one exchange with your old one that it was brand new? Normally exchange ones are re-conditioned. If it isnt reconditioned, it might be worth trying to source a recon one, because they are as safer bet than second hand and as good as new, just alot cheaper.
    #6
  8. Greggers
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    Greggers Member

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    [Jul 24, 2007]
    Dan a3...I was told that it's a brand new head, on part-ex - Star Performance are looking after my car, and it seems a reliable place.

    Cheers for the tip ont he re-con head though, will check that out.

    Really don't want to afford a brand new head, but don't want my car going wonky again anytime soon!


    greggers
    #7
  9. bouncer--daz
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    bouncer--daz A dog is for life....not just for friday nights!

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    [Jul 24, 2007]
    recon is the way forward... my gear box when within the 3month warranty from the garage I bought it from. They put a recon box and brand new clutch in for me free of charge. 12month warranty on recon box aswell. Cant complain!:)
    #8
  10. bouncer--daz
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    bouncer--daz A dog is for life....not just for friday nights!

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    [Jul 24, 2007]
    2nd thought.... the cost of gettin a head skimmed is only about £20 (recent price I was quoted for a ford fiesta head) so why not buy the 2nd hand one and have it skimmed just to be on the safe side?
    #9
  11. mwstewart
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    mwstewart Member

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    [Jul 24, 2007]
    Yeah I'm with Daz, I'd go 2nd hand as these heads are generally pretty solid.

    I'd mike the valve guides, get it decked etc - if you can't do this yourself it won't cost much for a reputable machine shop to check it out for you.
    #10
  12. S3 Dave
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    S3 Dave Now running on Heavy Oil

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    [Jul 24, 2007]
    Still think you would better off with a second hand engine but if your going to do it you have to put a special head with big valves and nice big cams!! No one would build a standard engine given the choice! Grant motor sport near Bristol did a great job on my 8v GTI. Sure he does heads on exchange!
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  13. Greggers
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    Greggers Member

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    [Jul 31, 2007]
    bouncer-daz - ta for the tip, hearing back today about a re-con head, which will have a guarantee (where'd you get your box from pls mate? Might be worth me checking there too - thanks :) ), and otherwise, I think I might well get a second hand one & get it checked over.

    So I'm told, S3 heads are pretty strong (mind, apparently their oil pumps never go, either! :rolleyes: ), so hopefully I should be okay.

    mwstewart - appreciate the technical talk, but I'm far from a machining wizard! 'Mike the guides', 'decked' ?? Excuse the ignorance ;)

    S3 Dave - know what you mean, but it's either a drop-in second hand lump, or go silly. Was leaning towards the latter, but the bank's telling me no!

    Speaking with Star Performance & QS Tuning today, will report back soon...


    Thanks for all your help :)
    #12
  14. bouncer--daz
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    bouncer--daz A dog is for life....not just for friday nights!

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    [Jul 31, 2007]
    It was the garage who I bought it off supplied me with the gear box... i think its from a place in gloucester that specialises in refurbing them. Thats all the info i have though sorry.
    #13
  15. Greggers
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    Greggers Member

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    [Jul 31, 2007]
    No worries, thanks anyways mate
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