Busso 12v engine rebuild help - opinions needed! - Alfa Romeo Forum
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(Post Link) post #1 of 18 Old 11-04-19 Thread Starter
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Busso 12v engine rebuild help - opinions needed!

Since there are probably many people more experienced than me at engine rebuilding (I normally just drop in a replacement short or complete engine) I thought maybe someone could offer some opinions on this?

It's a 3.0 12v Busso which has been standing for many, many years, generally it doesn't look very worn at all, but I'm a bit worried about the state of the wet liners, esp as they're virtually irreplaceable now...

What do you (collectively) reckon - rescue-able or have I got a nice pile of parts for another Busso?


Cylinder heads look virtually new except for the corrosion in the waterways




Crankshaft looks pretty good too, may not need any attention whatsoever





Well, assuming this is a normal cutout for cylinder 1 that is:




Bearings are very good too (as were the pistons, not pictured):






Oil seals were, er not so good




Look at this build-up of grot between the pistons! (I'm hoping a jetwash and good scrub with a toothbrush will get rid of this)






And now for the bit which concerns me more - corrosion in the bores. Hopefully honing will get rid of most of it:








But there are two things which worry me

There's a chunk missing out of the bottom of one of the wet liners. I get the nasty feeling I might have knocked this off when turning the engine over for the first time in years - it looks new.


Much more serious corrosion in one of the bores - feels like an 80s Fiat wheelarch when you run your fingers across it!
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(Post Link) post #2 of 18 Old 11-04-19 Thread Starter
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BTW corrosion hasn't been caused by head gasket failure - the engine was standing with it's plugs out and by the looks of it some insect or other similar thingy had built a nest in the most corroded liner, and there was a desiccated, mold covered dead mouse stuck in the v between the two banks of pistons
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Hi,

I saw your comment on my thread about engine rebuild. Thanks for the post

Huh about your engine. Crankshaft I would only polish, even though it looks good, but polish with new bearings will make it last longer.

Inside engine block between cylinders, it looks horrible. I have seen many V6 engines in bad condition and corrosion, but yours is even worse Try to clean that first and then try to take out liners. That one broken at the bottom is probably someone tried to take them out with something metal (you must never do that!) and broke it. You need to do that with some hard plastic or wood. I wouldn't use this broken one. And the one with bad corrosion, even after flexhone, many little holes from rust will probably stay in liner wall. You can take 5 "good" ones and flexhone them, then check very good and also measure them carefully.

If they are no good, I have used the ones from 3.0 V6 24V engine. Mostly they are in much better condition then in 12V. If you have any questions for help, write me
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3.0 V6 12V Arese POWER!
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Quote:
Originally Posted by killergame View Post
Hi,

I saw your comment on my thread about engine rebuild. Thanks for the post

Huh about your engine. Crankshaft I would only polish, even though it looks good, but polish with new bearings will make it last longer.

Inside engine block between cylinders, it looks horrible. I have seen many V6 engines in bad condition and corrosion, but yours is even worse Try to clean that first and then try to take out liners. That one broken at the bottom is probably someone tried to take them out with something metal (you must never do that!) and broke it. You need to do that with some hard plastic or wood. I wouldn't use this broken one. And the one with bad corrosion, even after flexhone, many little holes from rust will probably stay in liner wall. You can take 5 "good" ones and flexhone them, then check very good and also measure them carefully.

If they are no good, I have used the ones from 3.0 V6 24V engine. Mostly they are in much better condition then in 12V. If you have any questions for help, write me
Great, thanks for the advice I was wondering if 24v ones from the later GTV etc with the crankshaft-driven pump would work but didn;t want to risk it. I'll try and pick up a set if the 'good' 12v set I found on Ebay aren't as good as they appear to be.

I think because the engine had been stranding for so long without the upper part of the water pump and plugs something had got into it and made a nest, the stuff inside certainly doesn't look like normal corrosion But if I am lucky everything should come out with a good jetwash. Hopefully the heads aren't completely clogged, but I have managed to source another set of 12v heads if they are ruined, so I'll just need to find some extra cash to buy them.
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Finally got the liners out (they were so badly rusted in place I bent my puller so ended up clamping them and having to smash them out with a lump hammer) and cleaned up the block:



Looking good, except for these two rather worrying areas of what I can only describe as cavitation on the centre cylinder in both banks. Does this mean the block is scrap?


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Thanks to a wheelbarrow full of parts I bought (I think from @redalfaracer , thanks for that) I now have 18 cylinder liners, 12 pistons (4 have gone in the bin), 14 gudgeon pins and 15 con rods to make a choice from

None of the choices are easy - all but two of the original 'b spec' cylinder liners are junk so they'll be going straight in the bin. The set I bought separately off Ebay all have small chips out of the bases and 2 are scrap, so I've got 4 useable ones there. But they're 'c spec' so won't match my 'b spec' pistons. And then I have 2 nice separate liners from the wheelbarrrow, but they've got a fair bit of surface corrosion and no discernible markings to say what spec they are, plus a full set of 'b spec' liners which also came from the wheelbarrow, with no chips. I'd be choosing the final full set of liners, but for one thing - they're all scored so may have suffered from a partial seize (wonder if they came from the yellow 164 below?)



http://www.nyssaracing.com/bigyeller.jpg

Pistons would be a no brainer (use the originals) except for one minor issue - one of the piston crowns was so badly corroded it's got a 2mm deep indentation in it, and the other set of pistons (from the wheelbarrow) seem good, but once again have scratches near the bottom of the skirt and slightly worn gudgeon pins.

And as for the conrods - 2 of them don't have matching big end caps, 6 of them have visible wear in the little end, and 2 of them have corrosion (guess where they came from) so bad the gudgeon pin no longer moves freely.

So I'm going to be spending some unexpected quality time with my micrometers and a nice, new bore gauge I'm waiting for from Ebay before I assemble anything, to try and get the best set of parts I can before sticking it back together. I'd consider saving up to get all new pistons, conrods and liners if this was a 24v 164 engine, but I'm going to resist the temptation for this crusty 12v block.

BTW here's an interesting tip for cheapskates like me - if you're doing the glazebusting yourself stick the glaze buster in a nice, old fashioned hand drill. It's much easier to get the necessary 45 degree cross hatch when the drill speed and depth is totally under your control, and moving slowly enough for you to see exactly what it's doing.

Last edited by mj2k; 1 Week Ago at 16:12.
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Managed to assemble a good set (I hope!) of pistons, conrods and liners, half way through cleaning them up and then I can at least refit the pistons / liners.

Couple of quick 'noob' questions before I do that though:
1) on the old pistons the gudgeon pin rotated freely (on the non-corroded ones) as the conrod was moved, on the replacement ones the gudgeon pin doesn't move at all. Which way is correct when cold?
2) There is a 20g weight difference between a pair of assembled pistons / conrods on opposite sides of the engine, pistons weigh about the same so it must be something to do with conrod balance weights. Should I try and find a pair which match in weight better, or leave well alone?

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I think 20g is a fair bit different. Are the pistons the same? What about rods? Did you get one piston from a QV and another from a non-QV? There might be small casting differences between production runs. Older rods have oil squirters at the small end, but newer rods do not. So sometimes mixing and matching parts require some machining to get all the weights to be the same.

When JimK was doing his 3.0 and 3.2 build, I saw his piston weight difference, within 1-2 grams. Now if the rods were also within 1-2 grams, then you could have only upto 4 grams difference for the piston and rods (not including pins, rings, clips). So 20g is way off. I'm not sure if that is within factory specs, but I think that is too much.

Try to look for some references here:

ALFAGTV6.COM - Search

Or look at the earlier 3.0 24V build

http://alfagtv6.com/phpBB3/viewtopic...+weight#p45925

He even documented his 3.0 12V build somewhere on the forum as well.

I know this is not a race engine, but the closer you get all weights of the reciprocating parts, the better it will be in terms of smoothness and longevity (bearing wear).
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 75evo View Post
I think 20g is a fair bit different. Are the pistons the same? What about rods? Did you get one piston from a QV and another from a non-QV? There might be small casting differences between production runs. Older rods have oil squirters at the small end, but newer rods do not. So sometimes mixing and matching parts require some machining to get all the weights to be the same.

When JimK was doing his 3.0 and 3.2 build, I saw his piston weight difference, within 1-2 grams. Now if the rods were also within 1-2 grams, then you could have only upto 4 grams difference for the piston and rods (not including pins, rings, clips). So 20g is way off. I'm not sure if that is within factory specs, but I think that is too much.

Try to look for some references here:

ALFAGTV6.COM - Search

Or look at the earlier 3.0 24V build

My engine 3.0 V6 24V - Page 3 - ALFAGTV6.COM

He even documented his 3.0 12V build somewhere on the forum as well.

I know this is not a race engine, but the closer you get all weights of the reciprocating parts, the better it will be in terms of smoothness and longevity (bearing wear).
Thanks, and very true This is only the first iteration of the engine and I'd like to rebuild it using forged pistons / rods when funds allow so I can tune it a bit (or maybe start with a 164 24v), but even in a 'cooking' standard road engine I can imagine 20g difference would create some serious NVH at higher rpm.

I was planning to reuse the original pistons / rods which came with the engine but two of the original pistons had rusted onto the gudgeon pins so I figured that wouldn't be very wise, so used a set of separate pistons / rods I had from a collection of parts I bought from an ex 164 racer. Pistons were all within a couple of grams of each other but rod weights were all over the place; I assumed since they had a matching number sequence stamped into them that they were from the same engine and that the difference was down to balancing but they could well have all been from different engines.

Guess I'd better get the pistons / rods separated and weight-match them better rather than relying on the numbers
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Weight matching done - by swapping one super-heavy rod and some judicious fiddling about with gudgeon pins / rods I've managed to get the weights as below, which should be good enough for a road engine:

1219 1218
1219 1222
1225 1225

I checked by heating them in the oven and the gudgeon pins move fine when they're a few degrees hotter so no need to worry about that, and they don't look too bad either:




So I can start to stick stuff back together
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What you have now is pretty good. But if you have a bit of time, shave a few grams off the heavy ones. Make the 25s down to 22s and you’re set. But if not, what you have right now should be ok.
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What you have now is pretty good. But if you have a bit of time, shave a few grams off the heavy ones. Make the 25s down to 22s and you’re set. But if not, what you have right now should be ok.
Think I'll leave it be for the moment - I have a terrible tendency to break expensive things on Alfas when I try to 'improve' them a little, I need to stick to the old adage "if it ain't bust, don't fix it". I'll be leaving the lightening / balancing to the 'pros' in the next iteration of the engine
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I've just been very naughty, assuming they're shipped with no problems I have a set of these on order from a tuning shop in Italy, £620 plus shipping so couldn't resist

https://www.tjmotorsport.co.uk/prodd...php?prod=K9144
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Get the maxspeeding rods, they’re dirt cheap, strong and light. Probably £300. With a lightened flywheel, the engine will rev like mad. In for a penny, in for a pound.
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Get the maxspeeding rods, they’re dirt cheap, strong and light. Probably £300. With a lightened flywheel, the engine will rev like mad. In for a penny, in for a pound.
I was (enthusiastically) looking at those, but they're made in China and there have been some alarming reports about quality control, with some rods twisting so badly they work the gudgeon pin out, or one report of a rod snapping in half at high rpm in a race engine

I'm not going to be using the pistons yet (they're for 'v2' which might be turbocharged ) but when I do for once I probably won't go for the cheapest option, and will instead buy a 'name' brand of forged rods instead to be on the safe side. Oh, and lightened flywheel / pulley will most definitely be on the cards for that
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Jim and I both use those rods. He had them tested to check its metallurgical properties. Can’t guarantee each batc is the same, but mine has been good so far, which is a lot better than stock rods. Stock rods are good though.
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Jim and I both use those rods. He had them tested to check its metallurgical properties. Can’t guarantee each batc is the same, but mine has been good so far, which is a lot better than stock rods. Stock rods are good though.
There are certainly a lot of people very happy with Maxspeeding rods, but there are also quite a few people who have ended up bringing their engine home in a bucket after a rod failure, e.g.



Getting them tested would be a very good plan I can find some way of doing it cheaply, it's that quality variance between batches that worries me. Maxspeeding is AKA Jihongyun(UK) Trade Development Co. Limited, and Chinese manufacturers are notorious for skimping on the QA to save a few quid if they can get away with it. Chances are they're exactly the same rods as the 'name' brands apart from the QA though (maybe even made in the same factory), and the big end bolts (which tbh many suspect cause the failures).

Edit: Heh, unless I got some shipped in from the USA for over $1200 (Eagle, Carrello, etc) all the other ones look exactly the same as Maxspeedingrods, right down to having exactly the same sales blurb and 'bolt options'! Since maxspeedingrods will happily laser-etch their rods with a different logo, I think I can guess where many of the £6-800 sets come from... Might as well see how much they can do a set without bolts for, and then order in some genuine ARP bolts to hold it together

Last edited by mj2k; 5 Days Ago at 15:38.
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I got a reply from Maxspeedingrods - they can send a set for $345 including delivery from Hong Kong. But after import duty and VAT that'd be more expensive than buying from the UK with the bolts!

Still, that's an interesting one - most of the 'clone' rods come from China but maxpeedingrods come from Hong Kong, and they're considerably more expensive than the Chinese ones (which can be had from $20 per rod, minimum order 20)...

I know the Maxpeedingrods dimensions were re-specced by a specialist in the UK when it was realized their rods were being made 'handed' but only for one side; wonder which version of the spec the clones are using?
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