Leshkin's Sepang Blue S3 Money Pit Project

Bet it’s made the paint pop a bit more, be interesting to see how you get on with the ceramic coating. How long is it meant to last for?
 
Thanks for being a returning customer mate, always a pleasure car looks so much better now, looking forward to seeing the daylight photos


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Bet it’s made the paint pop a bit more, be interesting to see how you get on with the ceramic coating. How long is it meant to last for?

The UNC-R UNC V1 combo will last for approx 3 years depending on usage of the car, wash routine, where it is kept over night etc, lots of variables but 3 years is achievable


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Bet it’s made the paint pop a bit more, be interesting to see how you get on with the ceramic coating. How long is it meant to last for?
Yeah, I can't wait to see the best of Sepang Blue in the sunshine!

I think Fran said it's meant to last for a couple of years. Seeing how easy another car was to clean and the beading after about 10 months of the same coating, I can believe it.

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Car's been having a funky metallic grinding noise in the bottom, front area for a few months and I've started to get increasingly worried about it. I could provoke the noise by turning hard left or right, with the noise being similar to a failed CV joint, but different tone. Plus the front driveshafts with CV joints were replaced late last year anyway. The issue was rather difficult to pinpoint though as the car had to be driven to provoke the noise... You couldn't get it up on a car lift and try it then as the weight and load on the steering was required. After taking the car to multiple places over the course of last few months, the guys at VRT were the only ones to start suspecting that the transfer case was the source of the problem, but weren't 100% due to how difficult this was to diagnose.

Suspecting the transfer case, I've started to look for local gearbox specialists to see if anyone was able to do some more in-depth diagnostics and if needed, rebuild the case/gearbox. STA in Aylesbury came up as one of the best in the area from people's feedback, so I left the car with them to take a look. The following day I got the call to say that after cracking the case open they found that the planet gears in transfer case have started to eat themselves and it was not cost-efficient to rebuild it. From photos, it was obvious that the case was full of metallic fragments and the hardening treatment has already been worn away, with wear in some areas being pretty terminal... Left alone, the teeth would have worn further until larger pieces begin to fly around, which would have caused the box to either explode or seize at speed, which would have likely taken a lot of other expensive parts with it.

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The root cause of all this damage was low transfer case oil level. STA removed 250ml of oil before opening the case. The actual amount that should have been there is 1L! Can't say why it was so low and STA suggested that it may have just evaporated through the breather pipe over the years... My guess is as good as theirs.

I knew from earlier research that a new transfer case is in the region of £1.7k+vat from VW/Audi and used ones were around 300-400 on ebay, but buying used I ran the risk of buying a cat in the bag, so wasn't keen on that idea. The other issue is that there are many variants of these cases over the years with many incompatible.

Guys at STA are official partners of TVS Engineering, or the older name, DSG Doctor. TVS were able to send over a 100% compatible transfer case with 5k miles on it for 700+vat, which I thought was a fair price to pay for some piece of mind. Anyway, the total for all of this came to just over 1.1k and I now have a car that is working properly again.

My money pit is definitely living up to it's name with the latest issue, but one thing is for sure though - I'll be adding diff and transfer case oil level checks to my 40k DSG service item list from now-on.
 
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I literally read the other day that when doing dsg for sake of a few more ££ do the diff as well. Spoke to mike and dsg/haldex and diff kit is £178 delivered i think. This proves why i guess
 
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Its obviously not had much love this year ha ha .
Haha, yeah, she missed the warm workshop too much! But yeah, this year was very disappointing. Hoping to go to germany next year, so Spa and Nurb GP track, plus some Black Forest would be amazing.
 
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Fair to say you've had some rotten luck this year buddy! At least you came out with a TTE420 at the end I guess, hopefully 2018 will be a less painful year for you though.

The main thing is that you can now properly enjoy your refined beast :superman:

I've seen a lot of information regarding DSG but not so much on the manual gearbox. Does anyone know or can at least point me where to find out the service schedule on the manual gearbox and diff please?
 
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^^^^ basically the same intervals..
 
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Managed to get the old girl on the track at Bedford Autodrome yesterday. Really enjoyed the experience. Got to test out the complete package with everything feeling right. The suspension in Sport+ felt spot-on for the surface, brakes were mostly great and the power delivery very smooth and progressive. It did highlight the need to look at the rear brakes as the stock pads/disks just couldn't keep up with the fronts and the car wanted to rotate under heavy braking a bit too much for my liking.

I'll probably look to replace the brake fluid with some high performance DOT4 stuff soon and upgrade the rear pads with Mintex M1144. The front disks are starting to show signs of wear, so I'll probably look to get them replaced within the next few months too. I'm tempted to try out the M1144 pads for the front too as realistically, the car does not see the track often enough to warrant the racing M1155 pads I have on now. So far, the biggest downside to M1155s (other than the potential for noise I discussed previously) is the amount of brake dust that they generate even under light use - the wheels are covered in dust in no time. Do stop the car really well though, so on the fence about this :)

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Another nice side-effect of hammering the car hard around the track is the way the engine feels afterwards - it definitely needed a good kicking to get some of the build-up out of the system!

It's days like this that make all the expense and frustration seem worthwhile.
 
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re: brake dust everywhere
They used to say that pads are cheaper than discs but not so sure these days :)
 
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S3 is looking good in the pics, glad all the expense and frustration has paid off so you can properly enjoy driving it again!
 
Managed to get the old girl on the track at Bedford Autodrome yesterday. Really enjoyed the experience. Got to test out the complete package with everything feeling right. The suspension in Sport+ felt spot-on for the surface, brakes were mostly great and the power delivery very smooth and progressive. It did highlight the need to look at the rear brakes as the stock pads/disks just couldn't keep up with the fronts and the car wanted to rotate under heavy braking a bit too much for my liking.

I'll probably look to replace the brake fluid with some high performance DOT4 stuff soon and upgrade the rear pads with Mintex M1144. The front disks are starting to show signs of wear, so I'll probably look to get them replaced within the next few months too. I'm tempted to try out the M1144 pads for the front too as realistically, the car does not see the track often enough to warrant the racing M1155 pads I have on now. So far, the biggest downside to M1155s (other than the potential for noise I discussed previously) is the amount of brake dust that they generate even under light use - the wheels are covered in dust in no time. Do stop the car really well though, so on the fence about this :)

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Another nice side-effect of hammering the car hard around the track is the way the engine feels afterwards - it definitely needed a good kicking to get some of the build-up out of the system!

It's days like this that make all the expense and frustration seem worthwhile.

I went for the Mintex 1144s f&r on uprated vagbremticni j hook discs not a bad package with the rs3 calipers on the front really good balance and stops really well. Fair amount of dust still put I can put up that. Rather stop well and wash wheels more often


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Did a bit of fiddling with the front on the car last Saturday and fitted a splitter/lip from Tripple R Composites.
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Will need to do a touch-up on the grille surround, which has some paint flaking due to a stone chip, followed by my aggressive jet washing :)
 
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Whats the reason for going back to a Revo cone filter from your ITG?
 
Whats the reason for going back to a Revo cone filter from your ITG?
ITG one I had was too big and just didn't fit right, so when it was time to get it cleaned, I just got a new Revo one.

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Would love a splitter. But i wouldnt be able to park in the multi story at work. Or my drive for that matter :(
 
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Would love a splitter. But i wouldnt be able to park in the multi story at work. Or my drive for that matter :(

That's why it took me two months to decide to get one - the car is a bit of a garage queen these days, so only comes out on weekends or road trips. Time will tell if this was a mistake... I'm not as low as I used to be, so I'm hoping I don't end up leaving it or the whole bumper in some remote location :)
 
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I've been thinking about a decat for a very long time and finally bought one to fit on my BCS system. My brakes we're needing some attention, so was doing some more shopping... I wanted to get Mintex 1144 for the front and rear, but couldn't find anyone that didn't have a long lead time on them, so stuck with M1155 compound on the front and upgraded the stock rear pads to Ferodo DS Performance, which are meant to be a decent fast road pad. Given that even stock pads were pretty good for me, I didn't feel the need to heavily upgrade them. At the same time, I also ordered 1L of Motul RBF 600 brake fluid to allow for a full brake system flush. The existing fluid has been through a few heat cycles and I have a feeling it boiled a little, so was past due. All of the above arrived as the really cold weather set in, so being the wimp that I am, I decided to save myself the pain and booked the car at VRT in Slough. I also supplied them with some 'CRC Disc Brake Quiet', which is a paste that is smothered on the back of the pad and is meant to stop the brake squeal I had originally with 1155 compound pad, before I fitted some shims.

Have to say, I do like the way the PowerValve system sounds now even more, plus throttle response seems to have improved - a bit sharper and engine is more eager to pick up revs. Sound seems to be similar to before on idle or off boost, but throttle blips and on-boost acceleration is now accompanied by a much louder/raspier sound. Inside the cabin, the sound is still pretty comfortable, but I have noticed more people looking at me when I accelerate enthusiastically :)

Brake pedal feel has improved significantly, so brake fluid flush was definitely needed too.
 

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I've always wanted to freshen-up the interior a bit by getting the exclusive leather bits added and have always longed for a set of Recaro SC or Audi Wingback seats after getting a ride in a friend's B7 RS4 a while ago... It made me want to improve on the OEM S3 seats, which I found to really lack in lateral support when on track or out for a spirited drive in the country. Finally got to sort out some of that this weekend...

I bought a set of re-trimmed door handles from an eBay seller in Poland in January and was waiting for a some good weather to fit them. With last weekend delivering just that, I enlisted the help of my daughter to get the front door handles done (Rather, I had no choice but to let her help :) )...
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The handles are a subtle mod, but do add a nice touch to how the interior looks and feels. I'll need to get the rear doors done at some point and will be sourcing some leather-trimmed knee pad bars for the center console as the next mod to complete the exclusive leather look. I'm on the fence about swapping the arm rest leather out... will see...

I've been mulling over getting a set of sporty seats for the car and finally decided it was time do bite the bullet... With the improvements in the handling and breaks, the stock seats don't seem offer much support in the torso area, which means I end up moving around too much in the seat as the cornering forces increase. I really liked how the Recaro Sportster SC seats looked and felt, but couldn't justify the cost of a new heated set. That left me looking out for a set of Wingbacks from a better-specced S3, RS3 or RS4. Unfortunately most seats for sale were way too expensive when you took their condition into consideration, as most needed quite a bit of work to restore the bolster and leather wear that is common on these.

I managed to find a decent-looking set from an 8P RS3 on gumtree and picked them up yesterday. I didn't want to add any more damage to them while transporting, so swapped them out there and then, with the original seats going in the back. Fitting was easy and all the plugs were the same, so got to test the heated seats immediately too. The three hour drive home that followed was much more comfortable than I expected from wingbacks - bonus!

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I'm over the moon with these - so much more support and the amount of feel I now have from the chassis has also been greatly improved. Not only do they look good, they also offer great drivability improvement too! Win-win in my book! :)

Another cool thing is that these seats have the same white stitching details as my door handles and steering wheel, so they all seem to complement each-other very well! I might get the gloss black seat backs wrapped in clear film to protect them from the inevitable scuffs that are bound to happen with this still being our primary family car.
 
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I've always wanted to freshen-up the interior a bit by getting the exclusive leather bits added and have always longed for a set of Recaro SC or Audi Wingback seats after getting a ride in a friend's B7 RS4 a while ago... It made me want to improve on the OEM S3 seats, which I found to really lack in lateral support when on track or out for a spirited drive in the country. Finally got to sort out some of that this weekend...

I bought a set of re-trimmed door handles from an eBay seller in Poland in January and was waiting for a some good weather to fit them. With last weekend delivering just that, I enlisted the help of my daughter to get the front door handles done (Rather, I had no choice but to let her help :) )...
View attachment 153983 View attachment 153984
Before:
View attachment 153986
After:
View attachment 153985
The handles are a subtle mod, but do add a nice touch to how the interior looks and feels. I'll need to get the rear doors done at some point and will be sourcing some leather-trimmed knee pad bars for the center console as the next mod to complete the exclusive leather look. I'm on the fence about swapping the arm rest leather out... will see...

I've been mulling over getting a set of sporty seats for the car and finally decided it was time do bite the bullet... With the improvements in the handling and breaks, the stock seats don't seem offer much support in the torso area, which means I end up moving around too much in the seat as the cornering forces increase. I really liked how the Recaro Sportster SC seats looked and felt, but couldn't justify the cost of a new heated set. That left me looking out for a set of Wingbacks from a better-specced S3, RS3 or RS4. Unfortunately most seats for sale were way too expensive when you took their condition into consideration, as most needed quite a bit of work to restore the bolster and leather wear that is common on these.

I managed to find a decent-looking set from an 8P RS3 on gumtree and picked them up yesterday. I didn't want to add any more damage to them while transporting, so swapped them out there and then, with the original seats going in the back. Fitting was easy and all the plugs were the same, so got to test the heated seats immediately too. The three hour drive home that followed was much more comfortable than I expected from wingbacks - bonus!

View attachment 153987 View attachment 153988
View attachment 153989

I'm over the moon with these - so much more support and the amount of feel I now have from the chassis has also been greatly improved. Not only do they look good, they also offer great drivability improvement too! Win-win in my book! :)

Another cool thing is that these seats have the same white stitching details as my door handles and steering wheel, so they all seem to complement each-other very well! I might get the gloss black seat backs wrapped in clear film to protect them from the inevitable scuffs that are bound to happen with this still being our primary family car.

I added all th exclusive leather trims a while back, they are a nice addition to make the inside look better. The rear armrests are the hardest to fit cos you have to remove all the interior trim from the boot forward to the front a pillars and the rear seats, took me all day to !!


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I added all th exclusive leather trims a while back, they are a nice addition to make the inside look better. The rear armrests are the hardest to fit cos you have to remove all the interior trim from the boot forward to the front a pillars and the rear seats, took me all day to !!


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It's just door cards on the sportback, so much simpler for me... Saying that, most of my interior has been out before and it's something I'm glad I don't have to do again any time soon!

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Was looking at the ceramic coating you got done to your car , last november i got a stage 2 detail and ceramic coating done and with me just snow foaming then gentle spray off and then i just shampoo and again gentle spray and i have found the beads just drop off still .
I too was told look after it carefully and you should get 3yrs out off it .
Some pics off how she looked before n after detailing and coating.
 

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I've always wanted to freshen-up the interior a bit by getting the exclusive leather bits added and have always longed for a set of Recaro SC or Audi Wingback seats after getting a ride in a friend's B7 RS4 a while ago... It made me want to improve on the OEM S3 seats, which I found to really lack in lateral support when on track or out for a spirited drive in the country. Finally got to sort out some of that this weekend...

I bought a set of re-trimmed door handles from an eBay seller in Poland in January and was waiting for a some good weather to fit them. With last weekend delivering just that, I enlisted the help of my daughter to get the front door handles done (Rather, I had no choice but to let her help :) )...
View attachment 153983 View attachment 153984
Before:
View attachment 153986
After:
View attachment 153985
The handles are a subtle mod, but do add a nice touch to how the interior looks and feels. I'll need to get the rear doors done at some point and will be sourcing some leather-trimmed knee pad bars for the center console as the next mod to complete the exclusive leather look. I'm on the fence about swapping the arm rest leather out... will see...

I've been mulling over getting a set of sporty seats for the car and finally decided it was time do bite the bullet... With the improvements in the handling and breaks, the stock seats don't seem offer much support in the torso area, which means I end up moving around too much in the seat as the cornering forces increase. I really liked how the Recaro Sportster SC seats looked and felt, but couldn't justify the cost of a new heated set. That left me looking out for a set of Wingbacks from a better-specced S3, RS3 or RS4. Unfortunately most seats for sale were way too expensive when you took their condition into consideration, as most needed quite a bit of work to restore the bolster and leather wear that is common on these.

I managed to find a decent-looking set from an 8P RS3 on gumtree and picked them up yesterday. I didn't want to add any more damage to them while transporting, so swapped them out there and then, with the original seats going in the back. Fitting was easy and all the plugs were the same, so got to test the heated seats immediately too. The three hour drive home that followed was much more comfortable than I expected from wingbacks - bonus!

View attachment 153987 View attachment 153988
View attachment 153989

I'm over the moon with these - so much more support and the amount of feel I now have from the chassis has also been greatly improved. Not only do they look good, they also offer great drivability improvement too! Win-win in my book! :)

Another cool thing is that these seats have the same white stitching details as my door handles and steering wheel, so they all seem to complement each-other very well! I might get the gloss black seat backs wrapped in clear film to protect them from the inevitable scuffs that are bound to happen with this still being our primary family car.
Mate the car looks stunning! I'm in the market for one of those..... u selling yet!?

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I added all th exclusive leather trims a while back, they are a nice addition to make the inside look better. The rear armrests are the hardest to fit cos you have to remove all the interior trim from the boot forward to the front a pillars and the rear seats, took me all day to !!


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Just did the rear doors. Took about 15 minutes in total... Really liking how it looks, now to buy the knee bar/handle things.
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Was looking at the ceramic coating you got done to your car , last november i got a stage 2 detail and ceramic coating done and with me just snow foaming then gentle spray off and then i just shampoo and again gentle spray and i have found the beads just drop off still .
I too was told look after it carefully and you should get 3yrs out off it .
Some pics off how she looked before n after detailing and coating.
Yup, it's pretty good! While I don't find that the car is less prone to get dirty, but it is now so much easier to wash.
 
Yup, it's pretty good! While I don't find that the car is less prone to get dirty, but it is now so much easier to wash.
Totally agree with you there now Sundays ain't just for washing the Car :thumbs up::thumbs up::thumbs up:
 
A small update since last post...

Installed a stud kit to replace the wheel bolts for a bit more motorsport cool points :) I went for a slightly longer stud (75mm) on purpose. 65 or 70mm may have been a better choice though. Taking wheels on and off is much easier now, plus I think they fit in well with the rest of the car.
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Also went to VAG Tuner Live last weekend, which was good fun...
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The calipers need a refurb now, so might get that done soon.

Have a few updates planned in the next few weeks... Watch this space.
 
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Added the final piece of leather pack that I wanted, to add to the door handles...

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While not original part, it looks like a good quality trim and I think it really adds to how the interior feels and is something I wanted to do for a long time.
 
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Added the final piece of leather pack that I wanted, to add to the door handles...

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While not original part, it looks like a good quality trim and I think it really adds to how the interior feels and is something I wanted to do for a long time.
Well as a follower off your build and i guess you dont buy cheap all i can say is ( EXCELLENT ) plus it looks Sh*t hot long may it continue :thumbs up::thumbs up:
 
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Blast...now i want a set :) have a feeling i might need to re mortgage though ?
 
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I have been looking at getting my handles done @leshkin any chance you could share where you got your ones from , ie where they recovered oe bought from Ebay cheers, plus how easy was it to swap the inside door handles .
 
I have watched this thread and your car is amazing .
I hate to think what its cost though but hay its yours so enjoy it ,,...…...
 
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I have watched this thread and your car is amazing .
I hate to think what its cost though but hay its yours so enjoy it ,,...…...
Thanks mate. I enjoy it a lot, plus newer models don't seem to have the charm of a 10 year old car especially one that can pull most of their pants down in a straight or in the bends. I don't intend on selling it any time soon and don't mind spending a bit to make it more special to me or keep her running 100%. If I needed a daily, I'd probably leased a RS3 already, but as it is it's perfect for how I use it

I stopped chasing power figures a while ago, but will be nice to get her running perfectly with RS3 injectors. As it is, I still get a bit too much smoke on WOT. Hopefully a trip to AKS next month to tweak a couple of bits, followed by additional Dyno tuning time will help to resolve that.
 
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I have been looking at getting my handles done @leshkin any chance you could share where you got your ones from , ie where they recovered oe bought from Ebay cheers, plus how easy was it to swap the inside door handles .
I bought both as standard retrimmed pieces from a seller on ebay from Poland. Just search for 'audi exclusive leather' and sets come up now and then. Cost wise, the handles we're about 230 and knee pads 220.

There are leather covers for these, but from what I've seen, they look terrible.
 
Thanks mate. I enjoy it a lot, plus newer models don't seem to have the charm of a 10 year old car especially one that can pull most of their pants down in a straight or in the bends. I don't intend on selling it any time soon and don't mind spending a bit to make it more special to me or keep her running 100%. If I needed a daily, I'd probably leased a RS3 already, but as it is it's perfect for how I use it

I stopped chasing power figures a while ago, but will be nice to get her running perfectly with RS3 injectors. As it is, I still get a bit too much smoke on WOT. Hopefully a trip to AKS next month to tweak a couple of bits, followed by additional Dyno tuning time will help to resolve that.

My thoughts entirely, I’m loving mine at the moment, just a remap and rear BCS to finish her off now. Can’t be ***** to move to an rs3 and I’m not sold on the 8v s3 yet.

Why start again if you look after them they last for ages, enjoy


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