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DIY turbo guide

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I started my turbo install this week, during the evenings.

Turbos are starting to become more popular now, especially as the dollar is so weak at the moment. It would be rude not to capitalise on that :)

I've chosen to use parts based on recommendations from Bill Schimmel, to give a punchy road car with good, daily driving manners. Big shout to ibiVR for all his advice and support and also for supplying me the manifold and spacer :)

So here is the bunch of parts I'm using:-

Schimmel intercooler system, Innovative Products LC-1 Wideband kit, ARP rod and head bolts, TIAL 38mm wastegate, 4" alloy MAF, 440 injectors, NGK race plugs etc etc


And these babies, ibiVR manifold and Garrett GT30R turbo:-



Could have gone for a GT35R, but the 30R is good enough for the kind of power delivery I want.

I am seriously impressed with Schimmel's pricing, service and quality....

Here's the inside of the chargecooler, check the welding quality...and it weighs almost nothing! 0.25psi boost loss, and that is a major anti-lag factor, and superb cooling performance.


The key to the Schimmel's chargecooler performance is the size of the tank (3 gallons), huge water pump and the big old prerad. The system supports up to 700hp. The tank even has a cage around the pump output to stop the ice cubes being sucked in!! Yes, ice cubes! Popular addition to chargecoolers in the states to get the best from the 1/4 runs!


OK, so that's the background, here's the progress so far:-

Before taking the head off, get cylinder 1 on TDC.

To do that, take plug no 1 out and see if it's at the top of it's bore. If it is, or thereabouts, align the timing marks on the crank pulley, thusly:-


If you have the VW cam tool, that should slot in freely. if not, just use a bit of metal plate that's laying around.

Both cam lobes on 1 should be at rest, both valves closed.


That's the engine timed, now strip the car!! Front will have to come off anyway for the intercooler / prerad install, plus it makes installing the turbo oil feed and schimmel intake manifold (if applicable) a whole lot easier.

Strip off head now that you've timed the engine too, and hang chains out of the way. You might need an assistant to hold a 24mm spanner on the cams whilst you crack off the 15mm sprocket bolts. They're seriously tight. If you're HeMan like me (LOL!) then you can manage it on your own.


Next up, install your ARP conrod bolts. So the sump will have to come off for that (again, has to anyway for the turbo oil return) and it has to be one of the most tedious jobs known to man!

If you're not replacing the bearings, just do the bolts one at a time and follow the ARP instructions on torquing them up. Leave the sump off for now.


After you've cleaned up the head and block faces, it's time to install the spacer gasket. If you use a Schimmel or EIP one, just whack it on and then screw the ARPs in. Make sure the threads are fully cleaned out first and note the different bolt heights and where they go. The 3 long ones go at the front. If you use one that needs seperate layers adding, then the VW metal gasket will be needed and you strip it down (break the brass rivets at each corner), bin the middle layer and sandwich the spacer with the two remaining top and bottom layers. Lower the head on carefully and be careful not to bind it on the studs.


Torque up the bolts in this sequence and final torque is 75lb/ft. Again, follow the ARP instructions.


Unfortunately, during these steps I noticed my block and head are pretty shabby. But every cloud has a silver lining, so I now have a 2967cc engine (83.5mm JE forged pistons) under way. The current lump will be used for setup and testing.

Looking tired, but to be fair I've seen a lot worse!!!


Head is not bad, but it's showing bad guide wear already after a rebuild 50K ago!! Oh well, I guess that's on the list then too.


So that's it for the time being. Can only manage a few evenings a week on it, but the next install will see the turbo etc going on. I hope it inspires some of you to get your wallets out! It's not difficult and it's not that expensive either, comparable to supercharging, but with a lot more power and torque ;)

Cheers for now..

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I started my turbo install this week, during the evenings. Turbos are starting to become more popular now, especially as the dollar is so weak at the moment. It would be rude not to capitalise on tha

you should be able to get 4" all the way, thats how its is on mine, but then that how markies done his 4" down to 3" back up

liking the look of this thread. im not realy a mechanic but have a technical background do believe i would be able to carry the fitment of a turbo myself??

Cheers guys, I'll keep this updated as I go along :-)

You certainly can run Schimmel's chargecooler with a Supercharger, but probably best to run it with his intake manifold too, otherwise the pipework could get quite long! The manifold and cooler are £1425 + shipping + duty & VAT normally, but they've already said they can do GBs if we're interested ;-) I'll let you decide after you've seen the installation pics!

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OK, where were we? Oh yes, once you've fitted the head you need to refit the chain sprockets and chain. Double check the timing marks are at TDC and then offer up the sprockets. I normally put the rear one on first, wrap the chain round it and then fudge the front sprocket around until it keys into the cam slot. It's a mare the first time you do it, but you'll soon get the hang. When the sprockets are on, the chain span between them should be saggy. When you tighten in the tensioning bolt afterwards, the sag should be taken up and leave you with no more than a few mm of deflection, it should NOT be immensely tight, if it is, recheck the timing and start again. Once fitted and not confident you've done it right, spin the engine round on the crank (27mm socket) several times and recheck the timing. Remember it's a 4 stroke engine, so you might need to spin it 4 times to get no 1 in the right place again ;) Those of you that know this can ignore :-)



Once you're happy with that, you now need to build up the turbo/manifold.

Make sure your wastegate outlet is pointing in the right direction (i.e towards the front pipe) and if you've got a strut brace, fit the wastegate after you've fitted the manifold as you won't get it through the gap. It's a good idea to adjust the angle of the compressor housing at this stage too.


And she's in. It's a heavy assembly, so take care when offering it up to the studs as you can easily bend them, which will make fitment a pain in the butt. It's pretty tight down there, but just enough room ;-)


Before you put the inlet manifold on, don't forget to plumb in the oil feed adapter. I got this tiny one from Schimmel, most are a lot bigger, but you get the idea. Screw it into the filter housing in place of the temp sender, then screw both the temp sender and feed line into the adapter and then fasten the other end to the turbo.


Then all that remains where the engine is concerned is to build it all back up again. In my example I'm using the schimmel manifold, which makes pipework for the intercooler hugely easier. To be honest i'm not sure what people with the stock intake manifolds do, but it'll be a lot of pipework involved.

To try and keep underbonnet temps under control, I modified the stock heat sheild to fit over the turbo manifold and I also heat sheilded the heater matrix coolant hose as it's very close to the exhaust. As you can see, the front pipe is going to be fun with the gear cables in the way. Not quite sure what I'm going to do there. Tom?!?


That's it for now. Next time we'll look at the oil drain. Cheers.

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Is there a reason for the grind marks on the manifold ??

Pass, thats how they come to me. I think it might be where they pour the mould and they grind it back flat but i never really thought about it. After a couple of heat cycles the colour of the grind matches the rest of the cast and it dissapears.

Got another batch on the way in a couple of weeks, i'll see if there the same but i presume they will be.

Your car is gonna be awesome kev, really nicley installed custom VRT. Love it.


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Cheers chaps. Sorry I've not been updating recently. I'm still plugging away in the evenings. I'm stuck on the turbo downpipe now, so have been doing some other stuff until I can find a way to get one made - or buy a welder and learn how to make one myself! I wasn't looking forward to that part and kept putting it off....and now I can't move further forward until it's done!

I'll try and get some more pics up soon.

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LOL! The downpipe is a complete f'cker to make lying on your back with the car 15 inches off the ground!! I wish I had a hydraulic lift!

It's nearly there, got the angles right, just waiting for my welder to tig them together....he's bit of a part timer!

The delay is also down to the UK having no 3" flex bellows (the Evo / Scoob boys keep buying them up), so one from the states will arrive on Thursday.

In the meantime I've fitted the Schimmel heat exchanger to the front, which was also a lengthy task, but super neat and invisible :-)

Question - My compressor inlet is 4", but the gap from engine to turret isn't much wider. Can I drop to 3" around there and back up to 4" again for the MAF/Filter? Will it hurt air flow too much?

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It'll work, but wont be great withough mapping. Bigger maf body means ecu will see less air flow than you have, but it will think its firing standard injectors, and your using bigger ones, so your ok ish up to low boost, but i'd be VERY carefull and monitor your afr etc.


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no, wont work. it'll give you baseline afr but no good for boost. If you want to go that way you need a rising rate reg.

Nasty way of doing it, but works as a short term solution if needed.

Also even with pukka fuelling, the stock ignition maps are not suitable for boost.

It'll run, and be ok off boost, but i wouldnt push it very hard...


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Think i missunderstood, i was thinking that Kev has a chip to sort the timing etc but was needing a solution to the unexpected increase in maf size, ie increase in air flow, so my solution would be just to increase the fuel pressure throughout, but keeping the original fuel curve from the map????

My bad, i'll keep me nose out,lol!!!

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Good stuff Kev' date=' Interested in how your downpipe is coming along. How close is it going to be to your ABS controler and brake pipes. Im thinking about rerouting most of the pipes higher up in the bay to avoid heat build up. Good luck.


Hopefully my welder will have finished the last angled section tonight and then it's just a case of welding on a 3" flex bellows and another V band ring.....oh and the wastegate tube.

It's miles away from the ABS controller and brake pipes. The only thing it is close to is the vehicle speed sender and the only thing it touches is the gear cables, but the latter can be tied out of the way easily enough.

I'd leave the brake lines personally and do your best with heat lagging. I've bought a turbo jacket from AET Turbos and will lag the downpipe obviously and also lag the brake pipes etc etc. I reckon it will be OK.

As for the fuelling, I'm confident it will run using stock MAF, injectors, ECU and special Fuel riser. It's been very successful for schimmel and don't see why it won't work for me. I will then get it mapped when the 3.0 goes in as that's the REAL engine, this one is just the practice one :-)

Here is the BEGi FMU I'm using - http://www.bellengineering.net/Pages/products_FPR.html

It's a pukka bit of kit. I know most people prefer increased flow rather than pressure, but this is specially designed for stock ECUs and only enrichens the fuel under boost, not across the whole range. It'll get me going at least, which is the main thing at this stage.

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O yeah it'll defo work with the rising rate reg, just not the adjustable fpr.

EIP use it too with varying success, although they change the timing with a chip as well.

It'll get you going, see whats what and give you a point of ref. Just make sure you keep a close eye on the afr while your playing with it.

Good news about the downpipe - get some more pics up when its done!


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