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My blown Engine = Autobahn track time for you!

Joined
2 October 2005
Messages
827
Location
Carol Stream, IL
I have a spot in the advanced group for the August 18th MVPTracktime event. As my subie engine is currently seized from a very exciting head gasket failure at Road America, I won't be able to attend the event. Mark charges $245 for the event, PM me and we can discuss discounts for Prime members who qualify for the advanced group.

-Randy
 
When we were at Wakins, 2 WRXs blew on the first day. This seems to be a common problem for these cars, no?
 
A couple of things jump out as to the cause:

1) Car had been throwing coolant from the overflow (symptom of head gasket problem which is the typical failure mode)
2) 5w30 oil was probably a bad choice for the track-- too thin.
3) Oil temps were up around 250-260 which I had previously thought to be ok. 220-230 should really be the top end.
4) I was running 5th gear at 130 (which is darn near redline) for the latter third of the straight (not wanting to shift to 6th).

With the coolant spraying on the hot engine, the smoke coming off the car was prodigious. The safety workers even thought it was on fire. It was one of those moments where the show almost made it worth pain of trashing the engine-- well, not quite:redface:.

On the upside, this engine doesn't cost $10k like the NSX, nor even half that. A stage 3 subie engine isn't even as much as the damn EPS rack for the NSX.
 
I guess I was wondering if there was anything that was showing up systemically when the car was driven hard, possibly indicating an area of weakness in the design. Just curious (sorry for the derail).
 
I'd be interested but wouldn't be allowed in advanced probably. Is the pass specific to that class. Do you know if the event is sold out, could I get some of my friends to come. At least one of them could run the advanced for sure. Got a website I can check the info out on?
 
I'd be interested but wouldn't be allowed in advanced probably. Is the pass specific to that class. Do you know if the event is sold out, could I get some of my friends to come. At least one of them could run the advanced for sure. Got a website I can check the info out on?

AMEngineering:

Call me at (314) 249-3770 about which run group you would be in. If you or a friend can qualify for Randy's Advanced run group spot, we can work it in. We are down to the last 2 spots for the Advanced run group, the rest are sold out.

Mark Pfeffer - MVP Track Time
 
I guess I was wondering if there was anything that was showing up systemically when the car was driven hard, possibly indicating an area of weakness in the design. Just curious (sorry for the derail).

The only common symptom that I can find is the coolant overflow bottle overflowing. You end up finding a residue on the timing belt cover where it spills. I've found a few posts on the subie forums where this overflow precedes a head gasket failure, though I couldn't say that it ALWAYS precedes a failure. In hindsight, the 5w30 oil was just plain dumb on my part. I'm a little disappointed that the race shop I was using didn't question my choice, but in the end I only have myself to blame.

Mark, thanks for the follow-up on this post.
 
I presume Subaru will not cover the head gasket failure?

I have an extended warranty (came with the car), but I'm not the type to take advantage of a situation that I'm really not entitled to. Not to mention that I'd need to bring the car back to stock condition to take it in and that would cost too much to be worth it. I had planned for a problem like this at some point, so it's in the race budget to fix it.
 
I have an extended warranty (came with the car), but I'm not the type to take advantage of a situation that I'm really not entitled to. Not to mention that I'd need to bring the car back to stock condition to take it in and that would cost too much to be worth it. I had planned for a problem like this at some point, so it's in the race budget to fix it.

Send it to COBB!:smile:
 
Looked into it and I would also need to get an sa2000 helmet. I had just used my motorcycle helmet in the past. My bud says he wants to stay in intermediate until next summer and I would be in novice so I can't help you out. Why don't you take the nsx? Three of my friends drive stage 2 STI's (05', 06', 07') Do you belong to any STI forums. They are pretty active in chicago with a bunch of others in some forum, wonder if you know them. ThaNks anyways, maybe I'll see you out atone of these. Gotta start looking for a new helmet I guess. Suggestions?
 
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Thanks for looking.

I don't participate in the STI forums too much. The STI is for the track, so if they go to the track we may have crossed paths before. My STI is the one with the blue and white clydesdale on the side #767.
STI_767.jpg
 
Based on my reading, any water cooled Boxter motor be it Subaru or Porsche may suffers from headgasket failures, and walls collapsing without any signs or symptons other than white puff smoke from tail pipe and over heating once the damage is done.

Only sound way to find out if your motor is on its way out is a compression test and leak down to see if the seals/internal is holding.
 
OP, sorry to hear about your rex' head.... if i were more advanced i would take your spot.... hopefully i'll see/meet some of you guys at blackhawk.

AMEngineering:

Call me at ..... Mark Pfeffer - MVP Track Time

mark, i called you yesterday about possibly running on the 18th. hit me up if you have any openings.

briank said:
Relax its not the NSX

ouch

mystican said:
www.subaruheadgasket.com...that sucks... seems like a common problem...

the link you (tried to) post refers to 96-99 and 00-03 roos only. so, yeah, it was a common problem.... was.

nsxfriend said:
Based on my reading, any water cooled Boxter motor be it Subaru or Porsche may suffers from headgasket failures, and walls collapsing without any signs or symptons other than white puff smoke from tail pipe and over heating once the damage is done.

boxer, my friend, boxer....

madnsxy said:
blah, blah, blah...

wave smilies....hi andy!!!!!/end wave smilies....
 
Autobahn August 18th was near perfect, barring a few offs. We had a full house for a gorgeous day. Let's hope September 13th & 14th at Blackhawk Farms is the same.

Spots are still available for our Blackhawk Farms weekend. Please visit us at www.MVPTrackTime.com for details or to register.

Happy Motoring and I'll see you at the track!

Feff
 
Yes, it was a nice day. :smile:

No, I did not recoup any of my fees. :mad: Oh well.

Edit: Engine threw a rod, rod exiting said engine through a 5 inch hole in the block and then through the coolant manifold. Since the manifold is on the pressure and not return side of the system all the coolant was pumped on top of (and into) the engine resulting in the prodigious smoking at the track at the time of failure. New stage 3 block on order.
 
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