Dilemma and Decisions

Ring CompressorClean PistonsCleaned Up HeadValve CoverOne Side CompletePush Rod TubesNew TinsGoing Back TogetherGoing Back TogetherGoing Back TogetherGoing Back TogetherOil Sending UnitOK, so I sorta ran into a dilemma tonight. My goal tonight was to get the jugs and heads installed, test fit some engine tins and admire my hard work. Before I go any further, for those of you who have never done anything like this before, invest the six dollars and buy a ring compressor. Makes getting the jugs over the pistons so much easier. Truly a invaluable piece of metal. So, back to tonight. I have preached to my kids for many years, don’t assume anything. Check, check and double check. Well, tonight, I ate my own words. As I had mentioned in a previous post, the engine in my Beetle had been rebuilt in the recent past. The previous owner didn’t know exactly when, but he knew that he had been. Every part of the break down of the engine indicated that indeed, it had been rebuilt recently. No carbon on the pistons or heads, valve seats looked good, etc. One head that I removed had a broken cooling fin. Nothing major, but it bugged me. So I went ahead and purchased another head from another VW enthusiast on thesamba.com. This was a mistake. I assumed that the engine was for the most part, stock. I put the head with the broken cooling fin in the classified ads. Luckily, I didn’t sell it because I had it listed as a stock head for a 85.5mm piston. So, when I started putting things back together, I quickly realized that the jugs did not fit into the stock head that I bought to replace the one with the broken cooling fin. I broke out the calipers and started measuring. The outside diameter of my pistons measured 92mm. The inside diameter of the heads measured 98mm. It was apparent that there was no way the new/used head that I purchased was going to work. So I went ahead and put one side of the motor together with the head that I intended to reuse, put the jugs on the other side and left it at that. So now, I don’t know what to do. Go ahead and use the head that came with the motor that has the broken cooling fin. Get the one I bought machined to work with my current setup or bite the bullet and buy new pistons, jugs and heads (which I don’t want to do). I don’t know of any machine shops in my area that could machine the head that I bought. So for now I’m stumped. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. So, with one side of the motor put back together, I did get to test fit some tins that have already been prepped and painted. I have a new alternator stand that should be here next week and I’ll continue to prep the other tins that I’ll be re-using. I’m really bummed that the head I bought doesn’t fit. But it’s my own fault. I should’ve measured everything before I bought it. So right now, here are my options.

1. Keep my current setup, re-use the head with the broken cooling fin.
2. Get the new/used head that I bought machined to work with my current setup.
3. Buy another stock head, pistons and jugs to work with the head that I already purchased.

Decisions, decisions, decisions…..your input and suggestions are appreciated.



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