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A4 2.8 Quattro Drift Project - Arnold

VAG-Slag Nov 16, 2015

  1. VAG-Slag

    VAG-Slag Well-Known Member

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    On the weekend I embarked on a 900 mile round trip to pick up what I believe to be an absolute bargain, and the beginnings of a project I've wanted to do for a while.

    The car it's self is a 1997 A4 Quattro 2.8 v6, and is/was a fully MSA logged tarmac/gravel rally car. As a basic list of mods it already has most the things you'd expect from a rally car including:
    Full cage
    Buckets + harnesses
    Hydro hand brake + brake bias valve
    Ally fuel cell in boot
    All cut off's/kill switches
    Plumbed in fire extinguisher
    Relatively new Koni coilovers
    034 motor sport cams
    Straight through exhaust
    Perspex windows
    All lines run inside car

    And this is how he looks as I picker him up:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Fairly rough, I know! The guy had stripped it down with the intention of respraying but never got round to it, hence why everything is basically just chucked into it. And at the end of the day it's just going to get chucked round a drift track!

    Everything's there though, and even better it came with a unreal amount of spares:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    There's literally every part you can imagine there, I'm not even going to bother listing it all! There's also a few things in the back of the car including wings + spare wings and even a spare pare of heads.

    Now, the rough plan is to get it all in one piece, weld up the diff + center diff and take out the front drive shafts. While I'm doing this I'm going to get some rack spacers made up (for non drift lingo people these will basically give me more opposite lock) and then take it drifting and see what happens. . . What could possibly go wrong!? :tearsofjoy:

    Fist though I've got some unfinished business to attend to in the form of a stubborn little money pit by the name of Ariana, a soon to be and long over due 300hp+ A3 which has honestly been one of the unluckiest builds ever (thread here)... Should be on the home straight though, once she's done I might have a little month off cars and then crack on with Arnold with the aim of being at a drift track come spring!

    Hope you guys like what I'm up to and that I haven't offended too many Quattro purists...
     
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  3. aragorn

    aragorn "Stick a V8 in it!" Staff Member Moderator VCDS Map User

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    Should be good fun.

    The rear diffs arent the strongest, but you've not got all that much power so it shouldnt be too much of an issue.
     
  4. adamss24

    adamss24 Well-Known Member

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    Yep, i second Kev's oppinion- a 2.8 v6 does not make a good drift car, it's too nose heavy and getting rid of the front driveshafts will upset balance. If it's drifting you're into buy a old 3 series, better smiles per miles !
     
  5. aragorn

    aragorn "Stick a V8 in it!" Staff Member Moderator VCDS Map User

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    Depends if your just wanting a bit of fun, or actually competing.

    It'll be fine for a bit of fun, and by the looks he has plenty spares so easily returned to standard.
     
  6. VAG-Slag

    VAG-Slag Well-Known Member

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    Nail on head gents...

    My two main concerns were - all the wight up front, and, not only the diff it's self but all the aluminium brackets and stuff holding the diff in place... But I know someone that can make that sort of thing out of tubular for me if needs be.

    I could have indeed just bought an E36 just like every other drifter, but A) where's the fun there? and B) an E36 with this sort of spec would cost 2 possibly 3 times what this cost me

    Is most definitely just a bit of fun, I'm not expecting to be competitive in the slightest. . . And if it really does make for a terrible drift car, there's nothing I wont be able to change back in a Sundays work and it'll be a decent track/rally car again.
     
  7. aragorn

    aragorn "Stick a V8 in it!" Staff Member Moderator VCDS Map User

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    i wouldnt worry too much about the mounts bar sorting the soggy bushes. Folk run these diffs in S4 and RS4's with 600hp.

    If your launching the car hard with that sort of power, the rear diff mount can break, as can the diff casing itself. But even with a RWD conversion, your putting nowhere near the same power into the diff as a 5-600hp S4 would.
     
  8. VAG-Slag

    VAG-Slag Well-Known Member

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    Well this is a friend of a friends S4, only running stage 1 map but had welded diff + center diff... Didn't take too long for this to happen:
    [​IMG]
     
  9. aragorn

    aragorn "Stick a V8 in it!" Staff Member Moderator VCDS Map User

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    Exactly, but thats >300+ hp and huge torque from a turbocharged engine in comparison to yours.

    Similar thing happens in ~5-600hp cars with the 4wd still intact when launching them hard.

    Sort out the soggy mounts to minimise how much it flaps around will help no end. You can buy an upgraded alloy carrier for the rear, or i guess make a steel one if you have similar issues.
     
  10. jbh

    jbh TDi lover

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    looks to have potential to be a fun toy.

    Out of interest.. could you get more power out of a 1.8T and get it lighter?
    could be an option for future.



    fancy selling one of the spare steering racks :sm4:
     
  11. aragorn

    aragorn "Stick a V8 in it!" Staff Member Moderator VCDS Map User

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    You needing a rack? Should have said and i'd have removed the one from this TDI, its going to the scrappy tomorrow morning.
     
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  13. jbh

    jbh TDi lover

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    yea pretty sure I have a wrongness with mine. wish I had known you were breaking a Tdi I would have come over for a nosey at it.
    Im looking for an engine cover also if its a non pd
     
  14. VAG-Slag

    VAG-Slag Well-Known Member

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    I was originally looking for a 1.8t but was also keeping an eye on V6's when this came up! . . And yes, in theory you can get more out of a 1.8t but talking from experience tuning a 1.8t properly can get rather expensive rather quickly, and I really want to spend as little as possible on this project.

    The V6 should be enough as it is, especially with the 034 cams. The linear power delivery and low down torque should come in handy on the drift track as well. . . If all goes well and it turns out to be a good drift car, then I may look at either a 2.7t or well spec'd 1.8t transplant. I'm in absolutely no hurry for that though!

    And yes, I do as it happens! . . I'll pm you
     
  15. VAG-Slag

    VAG-Slag Well-Known Member

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    Among doing 1 billion other things over the past few week's, I've managed to spend a bit of time on Arnold. A few weeks a go I got to work on getting all the bits out that needed modifying for RWD conversion.

    First I dropped the center section to allow me to allow me better access to get the prop shaft out, which came nice and easily:
    [​IMG]

    Next I undid all the bolts to the center diff housing and gave it a wack with a hammer to brake the seal and drain any oil sitting in the back.
    [​IMG]

    This all happened a lot easier than I was anticipating if I'm honest, so it was back to the garage with the center diff and my spare rear diff to have a closer look at things. One thing I didn't realise was how easily the rear diff came out it's casing:
    [​IMG]

    If I'd realised this I probably would have just dropped the diff out the casing in situ, no biggie though.

    And here's the gears that needed welding up on the center diff:
    [​IMG]

    That was a good few weeks ago now, I literally just got all those bits back from my mate last night. Here's both the diffs all welded up and completely locked up now:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    I was expecting a bit more welding than that if I'm honest. But my mate who did it (who's a proper coded welder) has done loads of diffs for drift cars before and reckons that'll be fine.

    So I got the center diff back in it's housing, and the rear diff back in it's casing ready to go back on the car:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    There's a drift day next Saturday (May 7th) that I'd quite like to get down to. I'm confident I can get the car in some sort of drift worthy state, just needs these bits putting back and some tidying up really! The main issue being, we found a cracked piston in our Transit flat bed which we were going to use to cart Arnold about :persevere: still, the engine's apart, if I can get a piston in time I'm sure I'll be able to get it back together even if I have to do it in my evenings next week.

    Off the back of what Kev was saying about the diff carrier bushes, I've been having a look about at what's available. From what I can see the most accessible ones I can find (i.e not in the US and at reasonable price) are these ones from AKmotorsport (link here).

    I was also going to have a word with a few of the engineering shops around here, see about getting some solid aluminium press fit bushes made up. Shouldn't cost too much I wouldn't imagine.

    Right now though it's all about getting this and the transit in decent order!!! :grin::grin::grin:
     
  16. aragorn

    aragorn "Stick a V8 in it!" Staff Member Moderator VCDS Map User

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    looking good!
     
  17. VAG-Slag

    VAG-Slag Well-Known Member

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    Cheers, certainly a step in the right direction anyway... I'll be so bloody pleased if he makes it to a drift track next Saturday! Ain't holding my breath though, I'm sure you know what these things can be like!?
     
  18. slepy

    slepy Extremely smart and handsome person. VCDS Map User

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  19. VAG-Slag

    VAG-Slag Well-Known Member

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    Yea, it's a real concern :-/ specially with all the heavy clutch action that'll be going down!... Thing is, if I buy one of them, by the time it's here it'll practically cost me 25% of the whole cost of the car! :tearsofjoy: I struggle to see the logic in that. I'll see how the standard one holds up (if at all!?), and take it from there
     
  20. Natan

    Natan Member

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    Definitely following this one. Had pipe dreams of doing the same with my wagon for a laugh but I'm far too lazy!
    Interested to see how this turns out
     
  21. VAG-Slag

    VAG-Slag Well-Known Member

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    It's pretty much ready for the track now... I'll update the thread hopefully one evening this week!
     
    Natan likes this.
  22. VAG-Slag

    VAG-Slag Well-Known Member

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    Been plenty going on, and not just with this project. I'm off to Glastonbury on Thursday so want to get this up to date before I forget it all...

    As I said, a lot's been happening so bare with!.. (also a lot copied/edited from drift works forum)

    As you may have guessed, I never made it to that drift day on may 7th, it was always gonna be tight! Not helped by the fact I spent most that 3 day weekend in the lash :sentimental: But I have managed to get a fair bit done...

    First up - As we well know the rear diff carriers on these are fairly prone to breaking. Half the theory towards this being the old knackered bushes letting it slopping around too much. I had a spare rear diff carrier knocking about, as well as difd/prop mount, and sure enough the bushes were like marshmallows!

    Being my usual tight self, I didn't fancy spending £200 quid on poly bushes, so I went about making my own [​IMG]with the rear carrier I drilled the bushes out, made a mould out and filled them with poly-resin... Wasn't quite sure how it was gonna turn out but was over all please with the result:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    And the prop mount was even easier... Just taped it up round the bottom and poured in some resin:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Armed with these I went about fitting the diff/center diff... At which point I was grateful there's no fuel tank in the way, loads of room to maneuver there:
    [​IMG]

    I'm expecting the stiff bushes to create a lot of transmission noise, seriously not fussed though.

    Following that I fancied getting some lock mods involved, so I went about fitting some 6mm rack spacers I had left over from the MX5 we had... For non-drift people, these are basically spacers you fit on the tie rod ends to allow the rack to retract further into it's housing:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Drivers side went in without a hitch and I adjusted the tie rod accordingly... Passenger side, not so much! Firstly the tie rod was unbelievably seized! Even after getting an obscene amount of heat on it, I still needed to remove the strut to allow me to get a set of 24" stilson's on, which inevitably ruined the tie rod in the process.
    [​IMG]

    Also, instead of the tie rod acting as bump stop, it was actually the steering damper bracket. Which just mean't I had to remove that to allow the rack to retract more:
    [​IMG]

    By this time I'd been fiddling around with many of my spare racks to try and work out how they work, and realised the rack only retracts about 3mm into it's self anyway. Which basically means I'm now at the end of the gears on the rack! . . Not expecting that to last long like that. Will see how it goes on track then perhaps think about modifying hubs for extra lock instead. Anyway, using this handy little app I found I worked out I've got pretty much exactly 45 degrees of lock:
    [​IMG]

    Which should do just fine for now!

    Also been scavenging tyres over the past few months, so quickly went about getting him on all fours for the first time in a while. Few other little touches like bonnet pins, and panel springs for the boot, then got the last few body panels on:
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    And also cobbled together a cold air induction kit from a few other bits I had lying around:
    [​IMG]

    So there he is, sort of drift ready I suppose?.. I'm hoping his debut outing could be at Skid Risk in B'ham, but there's a couple of things that may be standing in my way. Mainly the bloody transit! Managed to get the cracked piston out the other weekend, and not only was it cracked but badly scored.
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Unfortunately it's also taken the bore with it. Luckily we've managed to source an engine very locally, the engine was still in the van also so we've heard it running. Spent the other Saturday hungover scratching around with my mate and just about got the new engine in:
    [​IMG]

    It still needs plumbing in and wiring up etc but should be good to go once it is... Few drift days coming up in July which I'm hopeful for, just need a bit of luck on our side!..

    Thanks doe reading... Hopefully it's not all too much of a head ache to read!? More to come...
     
    S4_dan likes this.
  23. VAG-Slag

    VAG-Slag Well-Known Member

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    So, we've just booked Arnolds first drift day! . . Saturday September 24th :grin::grin::grin:

    Arnold is about as ready as he'll ever be (not very), the tow vehicle still isn't ready, and the drivers certainly aren't! :tearsofjoy: Lets hope the other drifters/people hosting the event are ready for us! . . Either way, should be fun finding out

    I'm gonna borrow a go pro so will be able to upload some vids of hopefully epic drifting wins, but much more likely drifting fails :tearsofjoy:
     
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  24. aragorn

    aragorn "Stick a V8 in it!" Staff Member Moderator VCDS Map User

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    Looking forwards to seeing it in action!
     
  25. Bradderz_1988

    Bradderz_1988 Dont replace it, Upgrade it !!

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    Been to the last 2 drift days at 3 sisters in wigan recently and it pretty much is all bmw's and mx5's in the non-cagged class be nice to see a B5 among these.

    Theres a BMW 323 with a 5.0 V8 M5 transplant and also another BMW not sure which series but thats a straight six with a huge holset turbo that was burning some rubber on saturday just gone.

     
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  26. Bradderz_1988

    Bradderz_1988 Dont replace it, Upgrade it !!

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  27. VAG-Slag

    VAG-Slag Well-Known Member

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    Also looking forward to seeing how this pans out! . . Found some guy in the US who's done a similar project with a TQS running a t28. Reassuring to know the B5 does actually work as a drift car! . .

    Check it out:


    Having some troubles with the tow vehicle though... Struggling to get the new engine to start, bearing in mind we heard it running the day it was pulled from the donor vehicle. Assuming it was just air in the injection system we've been towing it around my mates yard with his t5 most the evening, still nothing though :anguished: not even a cough. . . Gonna spend the weekend probing about, hopefully get it running!
     
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  28. aragorn

    aragorn "Stick a V8 in it!" Staff Member Moderator VCDS Map User

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    With my dads old mk5 transit DI, if it ever run out of fuel, we had to crack each injector in turn while cranking the engine to get the air out of the lines.

    If you do that and get no fuel, you know you need to look at the supply pump/lines/IP etc.
     
  29. VAG-Slag

    VAG-Slag Well-Known Member

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    Found the problem with the tranny...

    Although it's near enough 25 years old, the pump on the new engine needs coding to match the old ECU and key... Mental, the things ancient, I'm surprised it even has any sort of immobiliser or an ECU clever enough!?

    Anyway, someone coming out Monday to code that, once that's running we'll tow Arnold to the yard and get a couple of brief test miles on him just to make sure all is in check...
     
  30. aragorn

    aragorn "Stick a V8 in it!" Staff Member Moderator VCDS Map User

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    interesting,
    The pump itself is pretty dumb unless its a turbo model, but they do have some sort of passive immobiliser with a chip key. Usually the stop solenoid is covered by a "module" which deals with the security. You could just swap the module over from the bust engine...
     
  31. VAG-Slag

    VAG-Slag Well-Known Member

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    Yea, it is a turbo... We found the module, but to get it out you need to remove the whole pump and subsequently cambelt etc, which just isn't worth our time doing when we can pay someone to code it. Anyway, he's due here soon, so fingers crossed we'll have a running van by the end of the day!
     
  32. VAG-Slag

    VAG-Slag Well-Known Member

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    Plot twist - Turns out the tranny used to be a non-turbo, and who ever did the transplant didn't take across the OBD port :culpability:

    (for the less tech savvy, you need the OBD port for things like ECU coding!!!)
     
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  34. aragorn

    aragorn "Stick a V8 in it!" Staff Member Moderator VCDS Map User

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    Is it Lucas EPIC, or have they fitted the turbo bits to a standard engine with the bosch Di pump?
     
  35. VAG-Slag

    VAG-Slag Well-Known Member

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    It's a full engine swap with Lucas pump... I guess we could just swap the pump over (or module) from the old engine but we're obviously very tight for time/available time. . .
     
  36. aragorn

    aragorn "Stick a V8 in it!" Staff Member Moderator VCDS Map User

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    cant you just pick up the OBD port wires in the harness? Must be there somewhere!
     
  37. VAG-Slag

    VAG-Slag Well-Known Member

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    Yea, that was my thoughts also... But this is just information I'm being relayed from my mate, as I live a fair drive from where the van and Arnold are kept. I'll catch up with him after work and see what the deal is...
     
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  38. VAG-Slag

    VAG-Slag Well-Known Member

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    Evening chaps!... Been while since this has been updates, simply because not a lot has happened! Mainly due to the issues with the tow vehicle.

    To cut a long story short - Turns out the slightly later EPIC pump we were using was not compatible with the ECU and basically fired it, so even swapping back to the old pump didn't solve it or help answer any questions! . . But we've converted to fully mechanical pump now :yes:

    That only happened last month, and obviously we were keen to start making head way with the drift VAG once again, seeing as it's been sitting now since November 2015... Which was obviously a life time ago!

    Yesterday though, I'm please to announce we were able to take Arnold for his first test drive :rock: we din't want to go mad, just wanted to make sure stuff worked and there were no issues with the RWD conversion.

    We just about managed to establish that all does appear to work and that it does go sideways before he developed a misfire, as can be seen in the video here!
    [​IMG]

    Overall we're pleased with the test drive... Gonna chuck a set of plug and leads at it, which we're optimistic will cure the misfire, nd then looking to book our first drift day!

    Other than that I'd like to set the ride height a little lower, but he bottoms out on the beaver tail as it is!... The Koni's are damper adjustable though so might just crank them up a bit firmer
     
  39. VAG-Slag

    VAG-Slag Well-Known Member

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    So we had our first day out in Arnold last Sunday at the very wet a slippery Pembrey kart track...

    Before that though I changed the suspension... The seller was wrong, the coilovers on there were Spax RSX damper adjustable gas jobbies. Over £800 quids worth of coilovers I didn't fancy smashing around a drift track, and would be much better suited on my road going S4!

    I bought some ebay cheapies for £180 quid delivered and wasted no time in swapping them out:

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    For the money they seem great... General construction quality seems good and ride quality is good too. Not mega firm like a lot of cheapies are but still firm enough for the job!

    After a quick test drive round the industrial estate where my friends garage is, everything was feeling good, and with a new set of plugs and leads we experienced Arnold at full power for the first time, and things were looking GOOOOD! . . So we loaded him up ready for the long rive to Pembrey:

    [​IMG]

    With Pembrey over 3 hours away we drove up the night before and stayed in a local B&B. . . Next morning (after the owner of the B&B had to drag us out the pub the night before like naughty boys!), we hit the circuit...

    Apart from the overly slippery conditions, things initially looked good... However 2 things came quickly apparent – 1) the car was over heating, and 2) there was a leak in the heater matrix steaming up the car! . . Not sure if the latter was a result of the former, never will

    So after three laps or so we came into the pits, bypassed the heater matrix with a bit of sawn off broom handle (no jokes) and let him cool down for a while, and after a little poke about established the overheating is most-likely a water pump issue.

    Once the engine had cooled we queued up for another 3 laps, hoping it wouldn't overheat too much in those three laps... However 2 laps in and red flags go up, after everyone has stopped a marshal runs over to Arnold and gestures him off track (my friend Tom was driving at this point).

    We were sent off due to reportedly leaking oil everywhere, and as soon as Tom pulled into the pit I could smell gear oil... And a quick sniff around showed a crack in the center diff housing:

    [​IMG]

    A strange fault, not exactly sure what's happened... It's out the way enough I couldn't imagine anything's hit it from the outside, and it doesn't look like a stress crack. Looks more like something has come through from the inside, but no strange noised from gearbox or anything. No bout I'll find out when I get the chance to take it apart!

    Still, should be a cheap fix, and probably saved us cooking the engine on the day!

    So that was it, by 11am we were loading up the trailer and heading home... But bearing in mind the car hasn't driven anywhere in god knows how long, I still consider the day a success – bar the overheating the car and engine ran well, it drove/handled well and actually drifted, and we didn't bend it or inflict any long lasting or costly damage. . .

    We now know what does and doesn't work and what needs sorting/adjusting, and no doubt it won't be long until we're back in track!

    p.s promise to take some footage next time!!!
     
  40. aragorn

    aragorn "Stick a V8 in it!" Staff Member Moderator VCDS Map User

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    The heater matrix bypass isnt ideal. The engine uses the matrix as the main flow path when the thermostat is closed. If you want to bypass it, the hoses should be connected together, not blocked off.

    Is the mechanical fan still fitted? If so, the rad itself might just be a bit tired.

    Centre diff hole does look rather odd, i guess you need to get the housing off and see. At a guess, something loose inside the housing thats got flicked up and jammed between the diff and casing.
     
  41. VAG-Slag

    VAG-Slag Well-Known Member

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    Heater matrix is not blocked... The broom handle used was a hollow metal handle, and actually a perfect fit. A good bodge in my eyes!

    Mechanical fan still fitted, but not coming on, so that's a separate issue... We we're planning on wiring up a manual switch for the fan anyway. Rad looks ok though and fins not blocked, will check it's flowing water ok before pulling belt and water pump though.

    And yea, my thoughts exactly on the diff housing... Quite exactly what's been flicked up though, that's the question!?
     
  42. aragorn

    aragorn "Stick a V8 in it!" Staff Member Moderator VCDS Map User

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    Ah that's fine then :) I was thinking it was a wooden handle :p

    yeh i guess new viscous coupling on the mechanical fan will sort out the cooling.
     
  43. VAG-Slag

    VAG-Slag Well-Known Member

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    Got Arnold in the air last weekend and started taking things apart to try see what happened... And I don't think anyone will be surprised to learn it was those petty welds in the center diff that went!
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    I said at the time I didn't think they were enough... Won't be using that guy again! Anyway, sent that and the housing off to another mate who's going to do a PROPER job of welding both up for me. Will also send him the diff to strengthen that up a bit, as well as get my spare diff welded. Somehow I think I'll be needing it at some point!

    There's another drift day on Sunday April 2nd, which although is 2 hrs away in Birmingham, is actually one of my more local drift days. . . Gonna spend this weekend trying to sort out the over heating issue, and if everything's all good there, book on for April 2nd!
     

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