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MODIFICATIONS a long tale
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Old 02 Nov 2009, 01:03 PM   #1 (permalink)
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MODIFICATIONS a long tale

I’m sure we have all had bad service experiences at times… and told others about how we were treated and how we felt…. And I would put money on the fact that we told our mates… we probably put it on ‘the net’ and warned others against falling into the same trap? Or into the hands of the unscrupulous flea bay and fly by night traders that come and go..
On the other hand
We are sometimes pleasantly surprised how well we are treated and how our hard earned cash is easier to part with when we receive service way beyond what we expected…
Well this is my story of how disaster and tears have turned into smiles and an empty wallet.. LOL
A few months back, I decided like many of us to modify my classic Scooby… as you do!
It all started by talking with other owners and sending e-mails and posting on web site blogs… what are the best ways to modify my classic Impreza?
The advice, pointers, contacts and experiences others had received came back at me like an avalanche and it was interesting and informative to get the views of others at the grass roots, who had voted with their cash… but I needed to ‘pick the bones’ out of the masses of help that is out there… Thank you to all who gave
So armed with some of your experiences I decided to do the following
Change TD04 standard turbo for VF28 ball bearing Turbo
Change 380 injectors for 440cc injectors
Tubular unequal length header pipes
Full de-cat exhaust system
Up rate the fuel pump to Walbro 255L
Green panel filter
Change anti roll bars for Whiteline items
Fit anti lift castor kit
APEX lowering springs
Fit Ferrodo DS 2500 pads
Fit braided brake hoses
Fit lightweight sport Radiator
Get a re-map
Having done all the above…except re-map… I booked my car in with Mapping Guru and all round top bloke Bob Rawle of BRdevelopments wanting an ECUTEK re-map, but… Bob informed me I would require a replacement ECU due to the model year of my classic Impreza… no problem, apart from extra money required, Sim Tek’s brilliant dual map and MAF less ecu was ordered
DISATER STRIKES
Then it happened… 7 days exactly before the car was due to be re-mapped… the engine let go… two, yes two! Con-rods decided to punch two large holes through the top of my engine…. Eeek!
I could not believe it… I had kept it off boost religiously… and one mistake had demolished the internals.. you have been warned… I ventured above 4k revs when pulling away from traffic lights and clank clank clank… engine RIP… and tears as the engine had topped itself!
The AA trailer took the dead car home… and it sat there with oil and water dripping like blood from a slaughtered animal…. I felt very, very low
WHERE NEXT?
I had some thinking to do… I contacted Bob Rawle of BRdevelopments and gave him the bad news, he was very sympathetic and understanding, gave some good pointers and a glimmer of hope, he said, it may be an opportunity to get a better stronger engine… future proof for future upgrades?
I also contacted Harvey Smith in Darlington, whose services I cannot recommend highly enough, he also said to look at it as a way of improving… and gave very sound advice on how to proceed although there was not a penny of gain in it for him
Next… I started looking for engine re-builders and replacement engine suppliers, the prices ranged from.. new very expensive to.. second hand very expensive… far more than the true worth of the car
But I love my Scooby and did not want to break her up for scrap..
Then my brother and fellow Scooby owner (Spec C type 20) found an engine builder in North Wales on the net, a phone call to Andy of Williams motor sport (rally team and engine builder) and it was arranged… I would have the engine removed locally and placed on a pallet for collection… Andy Williams would replace original engine with one built on a Version 4 STi Block… Andy offered ‘bespoke’ engines re-built to customer needs, and so I took the opportunity to have the engine built to the following spec after more free advice from Bob Rawle and Harvey Smith
Forged pistons
H section steel con-rods
Cometic head gaskets
Raised compression ratio to 8.4
ACL bearings
High flow up-rated oil pump
Modine oil cooler
Exedy sport clutch
Harvey Smith supplied 6.1 kg lightened flywheel by ACT
The above rebuild would come in under 2K plus cost of removal and refit of the engine by my local friendly garage that had done a few Subaru engine swaps.. total cost for engine swap came to under 3k
Now the engine was back together and a very different beast of an engine re-installed under the bonnet… I contacted Bob Rawle to re-schedule the Sim Tek ecu fit… it was all arranged
THE ECU FIT
We, my brother and I turned up at Bob Rawles place on a damp Saturday morning.. Bob was already at work on a classic Impreza, he had just re-mapped it, the fellow Scooby owner waved and smiled as he pulled away from Bob’s HQ, we waived back and Bob called us into the garage..
Bob started to work by removing the original ECU and fitting the Sim tek, he then put lots of leads onto various locations under the bonnet, Bob was very happy to answer our questions and after a battle removing a sensor from the down pipe, and fitting a switch for the dual map ability of the ECU… we hit the road… Bob Maps on road… an interesting experience… after some initial set ups the power runs began, a problem was detected… we were not getting a full quota of boost… So back to Bobs HQ and replace some turbo actuator pipes and check turbo connections etc
Second run… still not getting full boost capability… suspect culprit the VF28! It was boosting to 1.2 bar max
So back to Bob’s and some more checks and third run… still no joy… so a very frustrating end to my session… Bob apologised but said the subsequent map when the turbo was replaced would be at a reduced price… No luck for the wicked?
So we returned home with a car ‘almost’ there…. Very, very frustrated
TURBO SWAP
I did a lot of re-search again … and again the advice and experiences of others came flooding in… buy a VF this, buy a TD that… etc but at the end of the day, I made my own mind up… I also had some very poor advice from more than one established trader… very disappointed… buyers beware!
I contacted Harvey Smith again, he had given his advice, encouragement and help for free and now I was back as a paying customer… Harvey specialises in Exhaust manifold porting… and also does a very good deal on ported TD05 turbo, there are three main options… 16g good early spool but limited power, 18g Fair early spool and good power and 20g a bit on the laggy side… but very good power gains with right mods… and all of them are very tough
I picked the 18g enough potential for 360 + HP and good spool up… and good off boost characteristics, also a very competitive price fitted
As Harvey’s business partners garage services, DLM are in Darlington County Durham, it would mean a long trip north for me, I would also want a re-map asap after the new turbo was fitted, I did not want to destroy another engine, Harvey said he and Bob Rawle had regular mapping days about once every two months, why not time it to coincide?... this suited me and was the ideal way to do it, so we were on
I arrived at DLM garage services and the bay was waiting for me… Harvey's business partner, Darren was waiting to receive me… The whole swap took about 2 hours and the VF28 returned and the TD05 18G fitted
So all was set for Bob Rawle and mapping
I rolled up to Harvey’s HQ to be greeted by Dawn, Harvey’s other half and their amazing dog Tess… Dawn said the kettle is on and made me coffee… Dawn also lined up the Bacon butties. A very warm welcome from Harvey and Dawn, thank you, a more friendly welcome would be hard to achieve
Bob set up the car as he had the last time… we hit the road and initial set up was completed, Harvey did the driving I was the passenger in the back… the experience was very interesting again… this time the boost was amazing… and had to be reigned in by Bob… Bob asked Harvey to return to HQ to fit a slightly different actuator pipe with restrictor… back on the road again and final set ups… lots of time an patience was required to achieve what Bob wanted… and achieve it he did, we did run over the allotted time slot
When I drove the car… it was so different, the power delivery is astonishing… pulls your face off all the way to the increased red line… presses you back into the seat as if you were a F16 pilot.. and it’s smoother off boost… a great result
I’m still amazed how so much torque and power can be produced by a 2 Litre engine and how… The car is destined for track day use… and I also use it for my everyday ride, it is a Q car like a stealth fighter… no graphics and no clues to what lurks beneath… just a plain Jane Impreza, it’s fun,
So what started in tears of pain… are now turned into silly grins and smiles from ear to ear…
So praise is due to the following persons who have made this possible
Bob Rawle
Harvey Smith
Andy Williams
I not only recommend them for their great old fashioned customer service, I also recommend them for their expert knowledge, positive outlook and bacon butties (Thank you Dawn)
Also I would like to thank… in Oscars style
My Brother Andrew
Subaru-impeza.org and it’s great members Martin, Ed, JD, Wayne, Pete, Darren and anyone else I have forgotten to mention… sorry

Service is about the experience…
No animals were harmed in the telling of this tale ;-)
All the best Dean ‘Nobby’ Clark
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Last edited by nobby248; 07 Nov 2009 at 03:49 PM. Reason: type o
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Old 02 Nov 2009, 01:09 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: MODIFICATIONS a long tale

glad its sorted matey,

not sure y going over 4k would kill the engine though? should have no boost while running in, or actuator pressure boost at absolute most, so little to no pressure at all. Tis strange and would make me ask alot of questions. but never mind, as ssaid glad its sorted
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Old 02 Nov 2009, 01:18 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Re: MODIFICATIONS a long tale

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glad its sorted matey,

not sure y going over 4k would kill the engine though? should have no boost while running in, or actuator pressure boost at absolute most, so little to no pressure at all. Tis strange and would make me ask alot of questions. but never mind, as ssaid glad its sorted
Hi Matey
No sorry... that was the old engine... not the new one... It detonated at 4k as I modded without mapping...then it went bang when I put my foot down..!

I ran in the new engine for 1500 miles with two oil changes then mapped it

Then second mapping session done after fitting new TD05
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Old 02 Nov 2009, 01:22 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Re: MODIFICATIONS a long tale

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Hi Matey
No sorry... that was the old engine... not the new one... It detonated at 4k as I modded without mapping...then it went bang when I put my foot down..!

I ran in the new engine for 1500 miles with two oil changes then mapped it

Then second mapping session done after fitting new TD05

ahhh right, i thought you ment it was a new build.

but its a warning for folks to heed, all those that moan when i say they need mapping correctly
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Old 02 Nov 2009, 04:14 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Re: MODIFICATIONS a long tale

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Originally Posted by Tidgy View Post
ahhh right, i thought you ment it was a new build.

but its a warning for folks to heed, all those that moan when i say they need mapping correctly
To right
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Old 02 Nov 2009, 04:54 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Re: MODIFICATIONS a long tale

god i need a drink
really happy for you mate im glad it has all come together in the end dean
we will have to arrange a drink before xmas mate will call you soon,you no how it has been at my houseand jane says we are not all plain
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Old 02 Nov 2009, 05:44 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Re: MODIFICATIONS a long tale

Dean. you should try and get the video editing done from the first mapping session at Bob's. It would make for a bit of an insight of the setting up and mapping procedure of the simtek(despite the frustrating end to the session).

Anyways, thank god it's all now sorted, i don't think i could have taken any more of your fecking whinging - lol. We don't get much luck mate, as you've said before... quote: "if i fell into a barrel full of tits i'd come out sucking my thumbs" - classic
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Old 02 Nov 2009, 05:58 PM   #8 (permalink)
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"if i fell into a barrel full of tits i'd come out sucking my thumbs"
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god i need a drink


I'm happy for you Dean .. Enjoy!
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Old 02 Nov 2009, 06:49 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Re: MODIFICATIONS a long tale

Interesting story Dean glad it all worked out for ya fella delighted
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Old 02 Nov 2009, 08:40 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Re: MODIFICATIONS a long tale

Glad you got it all sorted after the problems, Must give you a lot of satisfaction to see it thru to the end and not give up and break it
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Old 03 Nov 2009, 02:52 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Re: MODIFICATIONS a long tale

Great read Dean, Cheers for taking the time.

As Brett says above, you must take an awful lot of satisfaction from the fact that you made it through all the ups and downs and come out the other end with a car you can truly be proud of. Also good that you give credit where credit is due. Gives those of us not really in the know an idea of who we can trust with our cars.

May consider Bob for my map. Was gonna go JGM due to proximity, but tbh Bristol (that right?) is only 2-3 hours up the motorway from Brighton, so only an hour more than JGM. Both have stonking reps though so probably doesn't make much difference either way, but if I got to Bristol for my map I'm only a stones throw from some of those great Welsh roads.
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Old 03 Nov 2009, 06:36 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Re: MODIFICATIONS a long tale

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Originally Posted by holyfield View Post
god i need a drink
really happy for you mate im glad it has all come together in the end dean
we will have to arrange a drink before xmas mate will call you soon,you no how it has been at my houseand jane says we are not all plain
Your on!
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Old 03 Nov 2009, 06:37 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Re: MODIFICATIONS a long tale

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Originally Posted by brumbrum View Post
Dean. you should try and get the video editing done from the first mapping session at Bob's. It would make for a bit of an insight of the setting up and mapping procedure of the simtek(despite the frustrating end to the session).

Anyways, thank god it's all now sorted, i don't think i could have taken any more of your fecking whinging - lol. We don't get much luck mate, as you've said before... quote: "if i fell into a barrel full of tits i'd come out sucking my thumbs" - classic
Ok bro... now the brakes...
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Old 03 Nov 2009, 06:40 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Re: MODIFICATIONS a long tale

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Originally Posted by 2002pete View Post
...





I'm happy for you Dean .. Enjoy!
Thanks Pete... been quite an interesting ride But some good lessons learned on the way... and happy to share the experiences 'warts and all'
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Old 03 Nov 2009, 06:43 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Re: MODIFICATIONS a long tale

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Interesting story Dean glad it all worked out for ya fella delighted
Cheers Darren.... I know Bob flys over to the Emerald Isle for map days...

It has worked out... but there were times when... well you know buddy, when I felt like throwing in the towel... but you just put the gum shield back in and come out swinging!

Very happy now
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