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Newbie looking for info
12-09-2014, 11:14 AM
Post: #1
Newbie looking for info
Hi all, I actually registered a while ago but only got to an introduction now. I've been a Microbus fan since before I bought my first one (a 2l air cooled T3) brand new in 1982 aged 24. My friends thought I was crazy to buy such an "old toppie's car", but I loved it. In 83 I took it to JT Developments for a little Ford V6 treatment and drove it for another 5 and a half years without any problems. My friends also sang a different song about the performance! I had to sell it due to circumstances but in 1990 I was ready for another bus and would have loved a Syncro, but it was just to expensive so I bought a two tone blue 2.1 which we raised our children in, had lots of fun in and had excellent service from. I'm without a bus now for a number of years and decided it is time to get that Syncro I missed out on years ago. I would just like a bit on advice on engines please. From browsing lots of Syncro information on the net, it seems the 2l Golf engine is probably the best option. It also seems that there are quite a lot of blown head gaskets on the 5 cyl Audi motors - this seems to be a common problem. What are the reasons and is there a cure? Is it safer to go for a recently overhauled 2.1 than one of the 5 cylinders? I had excellent service from my 2.1 and it was more than adequate for what I did with it (including towing quite a big caravan). I already had a look at a few busses, but most are not in a condition I like and all 3 the 5 cylinders had head gasket problems (one more than once). The only 2.1 did 300k km before it was overhauled so to me it seems as if the 2.1 might be a better option until a 2l Golf can be fitted - is this a fair assumption? Thank for a this nice and informative forum. I hope to get a Syncro soon and hope to then become more active here.
Danie Schoeman
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12-09-2014, 11:57 AM
Post: #2
RE: Newbie looking for info
Hi Danie. I've gone through a similar "study" a few years back. The outcome was that Syncro drivers each has a very specific opinion on this matter. One will swear at the stock standard 2.1L, while the next will try to fit the largest possible engine into the allowed space. Best that you first determine your specific needs (e g light on petrol versus heavy duty towing versus lots of talk, etc) and then communicate such with people in this business. Here in the Western Cape we have Arno who will be able to assist you greatly. Arno also convert the 2.1L into a green engine (using unleaded). That all said, the Syncro remains a large heavy (strong) verhicle and engine performance will always remain a issue. Enjoy your upcoming Syncro. Johan de Kock

sunjomar
Johan de Kock, Hermanus
Syncronizer
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12-09-2014, 08:28 PM
Post: #3
RE: Newbie looking for info
HI and Welcome

Personally I am a 2.1 fan and still got a 2.1 in my bus and was the only wbx other than the 6 Golf and 2 5Cylinder Syncros on the Easter trip with a 2.1 all though I am in 2 minds to finish my 2.1 sleepy golf motor build or just get decent H Beam con-rods for my 2.5 Oettinger flat four to enjoy nice torque and fit that as there is less mods just engine sub out and new 2.5 sub in and some tuning

All the problems we had with all the 5Cylinder engines we have repaired in the past is advanced timing (As the front pulley move and the people advance the timing also for more power ) and the Radiators get blocked up on the lower tubes due to rust and no use of antifreeze

If you had a 2.1 and was happy and serviced it regularly then it should be reliable
even if the 5 Cylinder are done right they run very well

We just sorted a 5 Cyl last week flush Radiator and checked cam timing+Ign timing and the Temp on the Gauge came down from where it was before
There is mods we do to make them more reliable with slight lower compression but remember lower CR is lower Hp

The only problem with the WBX is if you are up in Africa and you encounter a problem parts is a problem where if you got a Golf engine you should be able to even find a 1300 golf engine stick it it and drive home

It have been proven that any conversion could be reliable if the nut holding the Steering is awake and keep an eye on the Guages
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12-09-2014, 10:35 PM
Post: #4
RE: Newbie looking for info
As i,m doing the trip to the Hell in 2 weeks, please explain to me how to flush the radiator? And how much anti freez do i add to the water when i refill - thanx

Rhyno van Zyl
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12-10-2014, 07:04 AM
Post: #5
RE: Newbie looking for info
You have to remove the Radiator and take it in to the Radiator guys to put it in their cemical tanks that loosen all the grime collecting and clogging the thin tubes on the bottom side of the Radiator and they "Flush " and clean the core the bus we done last week Temp Came down Dramatically due to the Blocked Radiator

Radiators are one of the last things people remove and clean in a bus as they think it is big and water system is working till they clean the Radiator and see the differance in Temperature

We even had on a 2.6 that the Thermo switch for the fan did not function correctly
on removing it the radiator was even blocked with all the rust shit up to the switch point
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12-10-2014, 07:51 AM
Post: #6
RE: Newbie looking for info
for very similar cost just buy a new radiator, about 5-7 litres of good quality anti freeze, water system takes approx 14litres

I may be a mechanic, but i can't fix stupid
Bad planning on your part does not make your issue an crisis to me
Bad workmanship by other garages does not entiltle you to better rates at me
Syncro, syncro , syncro and more syncro, this is the syncro way of life
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12-11-2014, 08:05 AM
Post: #7
RE: Newbie looking for info
So, I bought 2l of Total anti freeze, and was told that if there is none in the water, I will need 3 more Litres. Went home to drain the filling tank by sucking it out with a tube. My first "MOUTH FULL" convinced me that it was full of anti freeze! What a horrible chemical taste! Well, I added the 2 litres and can just hope that the Syncro Bus appreciate the effort as much as I disliked the taste! The Bus and I are now Anti Freeze (blood) Brothers and ready to go to Die Hel!

Rhyno van Zyl
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12-11-2014, 09:24 AM
Post: #8
RE: Newbie looking for info
Hope you take a video of the descent and ascent. We were going to do this last Dec but got stuck in Hartenbos after the oil seal on the Doka gave up the ghost and we could only be helped on the 2nd of Jan. We had to drive back home on the 3rd.
Don't know if you have seen this. Check out the videos at the bottom of the page.

http://www.mountainpassessouthafrica.co....e-hel.html

[Image: SyncroSignature.jpg]

Life's a journey, not a race. Enjoy it.
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12-11-2014, 01:05 PM
Post: #9
RE: Newbie looking for info
Most definitely will I video the - My wife (Nadine) is less eager to shoot the video as it would be her job - which means she will have to get out to do the "driving towards and away" scenes as well as any challenging crossings And then she will have to catch up on foot. I will just buy her some biltong as payment Big Grin

Rhyno van Zyl
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12-11-2014, 01:17 PM
Post: #10
RE: Newbie looking for info
Let her drive, syncro's are easy to drive

I may be a mechanic, but i can't fix stupid
Bad planning on your part does not make your issue an crisis to me
Bad workmanship by other garages does not entiltle you to better rates at me
Syncro, syncro , syncro and more syncro, this is the syncro way of life
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