2 litre TS CF3 motor overhaul - Alfa Romeo Forum
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(Post Link) post #1 of 44 Old 05-10-12 Thread Starter
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2 litre TS CF3 motor overhaul

Have a 2003 2.0 TS that has now covered 136 000 km trouble free km’s – it has since new consumed lots of oil, which some owners have reported as a problem with the CF3 motors; apparently compliance with Euro 3 emmission specs robbed these motors of power and as part of a plan to counteract this, thinner rings were fitted to the CF3 motors.

Whilst my car is still running smoothly, I want to see if fitment of new rings will cure the problem and ideally would like to get away with a “rings and bearings”job, so am going to remove the head and strip the motor with the engine block in place to save some labour costs.

If what I have been told is correct, I expect the motor to have the thinner 2 mm oil rings and not the 2.5 mm ones of the older motors? Has anyone fitted the 2.5 mm rings to pistons from CF3 motors, by having ring grooves cut ? or if not a good idea, any recommendations about brand of rings that are better than OE ?
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If you don't like the CF3 pistons, you could use CF2 pistons, rings and head gasket set.
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If you look at this page Alfa Romeo 147 Club • Toon onderwerp - Zuigerveren vervangen 1.6 Twin Spark you can see that the pistons have no holes for the oil to escape.New rings might help but not cure the problem totally.
Best would be to make some mods to the pistons as well.
I`m thinking of doing same mods to my JTS pistons and then I see what is the result.
I´m planning to leave old rings in place to make one thing at a time to see what actually cures the oil consumption.
Mine has done 85000 km and consumes 1L for 3000 km.
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Thanks guys.
@Pud237 - trying to keep costs down, so not keen on getting CF2 pistons, but great to know it could work. Looked at the ring glands on a CF3 piston and there is not really enough space to cut and fit "thicker" rings.
@Kristop - will check my pistons when I strip it next week, but CF3 pistons seem to have four holes just below ring glands.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kristop View Post
If you look at this page Alfa Romeo 147 Club • Toon onderwerp - Zuigerveren vervangen 1.6 Twin Spark you can see that the pistons have no holes for the oil to escape.New rings might help but not cure the problem totally.
Best would be to make some mods to the pistons as well.
I`m thinking of doing same mods to my JTS pistons and then I see what is the result.
I´m planning to leave old rings in place to make one thing at a time to see what actually cures the oil consumption.
Mine has done 85000 km and consumes 1L for 3000 km.
I can confirm that this modification on pistons works on JTS and TS!
No need for 4 holes on each side, 2 holes (on each side) in the oil ring groove is enough

BTW I do not understand why this holes are not made in original piston???
and why rings are smaller????

Last edited by Boris; 12-10-12 at 14:43.
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(Post Link) post #6 of 44 Old 25-10-12 Thread Starter
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Engine stripped in place. Sump contained a black tar type of coating ( not quite sludge) likely caused by a “blend” of the different oils and additives I have been experimenting with over the past 100 000 km’s to try and magically curb the engines oil consumption.

Head was reconditioned, received a light skim and Reinz valve stem oil seals were fitted.

Main end bearings were not replaced as they were in as new good condition.

Crank journals showed no signs of wear, but big end bearings had small pit marks that seemed to have been caused by something other than wear. Will post pictures later. Big ends replaced with King Bearings ( King Engine Bearings) made in Israel.

The CF3 pistons were in good condition with no abnormal wear in ring grooves. After being a bit hesitant, we drilled four 1.5 mm holes in the 2.0 mm oil ring groove of each piston. Chose a smaller diameter as shown in the pictures as I was not too keen on the “burr” effect of the larger holes in the pistons shown.

The bore still had factory hone marks showing, but rings were fairly worn. This engine had an oil consumption issue from new, so it would be stupid to again risk fitting OE rings that was partially responsible for the problem; rings therefore fitted were standard NPR (NPR of EUROPE| Automotive Technology) made in Germany - has anyone used this brand before ?
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4 holes on each side of the piston or 4 holes in total (2 per side)?
What was exact oil usage before?

Please report of oil usage after running-in period, I would like to compare to my experience.
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(Post Link) post #8 of 44 Old 25-10-12 Thread Starter
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Sorry, 4 holes in total i.e. 2 per side.
Oil usage about approx 1 litre per 1500 km.

I will post regular updates on oil usage and anything else of interest.
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My experience with new rings and 4 holes in total was droped oil consumption on JTS from almost a litre to 0,2 per 1000 km (normal vechicle use, or slighty more for sporting use)

Last edited by Boris; 25-10-12 at 10:18.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Java001 View Post
The bore still had factory hone marks showing, but rings were fairly worn. This engine had an oil consumption issue from new, so it would be stupid to again risk fitting OE rings that was partially responsible for the problem; rings therefore fitted were standard NPR (NPR of EUROPE| Automotive Technology) made in Germany - has anyone used this brand before ?
Did I understand right that you put new rings in without honing the cylinder bores.
Were the new oil rings more open type to allow oil to flow through better ?
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(Post Link) post #11 of 44 Old 26-10-12 Thread Starter
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No, we did give the bores a light hone before assembling.
I was just indicating that despite the engine being 10 years and 136 000 km old, that the factory hone marks still showed - in other words, that after 10 years the rings had not worn/glazed the bore to the extent that it even removed all of these marks.
Very much a case of "soft rings/hard bore", which makes it possibly to replace rings on standard pistons instead of a much more expensive reboring/resleeving and fitting of oversize pistons.
On the other hand, I have also read that some Alfa Romeo engine builders blame excessive factory honing that led to deep bore marks, as being partly responsible for oil consumption issues. So maybe I should not get too excited about limited bore wear - maybe the marks were simply too deep when the car was new?

Last edited by Java001; 26-10-12 at 14:53.
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Not likely. To get deeper marks the grit on the stones would have to be coarser. All that excessive honing would do would be to make the bore larger. These engines rev freely because they are not built to tight tolerances. It's also why they are prone to oil usage and often need a rebuild at around 100k. I've stripped lots of engines with 200k + on them where the bores are perfect with visible hone marks like yours.
I'm surprised you used the old mains shells again with the big ends showing signs of wear.
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Did you use Alfa rings?

I despise the solid oil ring design. They clog up and start smoking o Alfa. BMW and a lot of other manufacturers.
I only use ring sets that use 3 part oil rings. Without drilling holes in the pistons they cure the oil usage.
In my experience.
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Not likely. To get deeper marks the grit on the stones would have to be coarser. All that excessive honing would do would be to make the bore larger. These engines rev freely because they are not built to tight tolerances. It's also why they are prone to oil usage and often need a rebuild at around 100k. I've stripped lots of engines with 200k + on them where the bores are perfect with visible hone marks like yours.
I'm surprised you used the old mains shells again with the big ends showing signs of wear.
As mentioned in the original post, the rebuild was done with the block in place i.e. only head and sump off.

Below are pics showing block assembled, crank with sump off & a main shell........... all were similar condition
Attached Images
File Type: jpg block assembled.jpg (64.2 KB, 148 views)
File Type: jpg main ends.jpg (21.5 KB, 121 views)
File Type: jpg sump off.jpg (36.1 KB, 134 views)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by turbonutters View Post
Did you use Alfa rings?

I despise the solid oil ring design. They clog up and start smoking o Alfa. BMW and a lot of other manufacturers.
I only use ring sets that use 3 part oil rings. Without drilling holes in the pistons they cure the oil usage.
In my experience.
Although car never smoked, the rings were badly clogged up. I was a bit pressed for time so could not really shop around that much and had to settle for what I could source locally at a decent price.
Bearing in mind that this motor suffered with excessive oil consumption since 30 000 km, I was not going to use Alfa parts at all and in the end used NPR rings NPR of EUROPE| Automotive Technology
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The cats got rid of the smoke
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The cats got rid of the smoke
Yeah, you told me in March 2012 already to get rid of the cats in this topic
https://www.alfaowner.com/Forum/south...56-2-0-ts.html
but the front ones are still in !

Will get them done NOW!
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Any experience of oil usage after running-in period?

Last edited by Boris; 22-12-12 at 13:10.
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Any experience of oil usage after running-in period?
Ran motor in on a Shell Helix Diesel HX5 15W-40 oil known for its detergent qualities. Wanted to do only 1000 km before oil and filter change, but ended up doing about 1700km in one trip where I kept revs below 3500 rpm. Oil level per dipstick with engine cold i.e. as much oil in sump as possible, dropped by about 2mm!

All drained and new oil and filter fitted. I was so excited about the oil consumption that I became "brave" and filled with Shell Helix Ultra 5w-40 full synthetic and so far NO oil usage at all after about 1000km.
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The Alfa oil rings are ****... the 3 piece rings are much better.
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Quote:
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Ran motor in on a Shell Helix Diesel HX5 15W-40 oil known for its detergent qualities. Wanted to do only 1000 km before oil and filter change, but ended up doing about 1700km in one trip where I kept revs below 3500 rpm. Oil level per dipstick with engine cold i.e. as much oil in sump as possible, dropped by about 2mm!

All drained and new oil and filter fitted. I was so excited about the oil consumption that I became "brave" and filled with Shell Helix Ultra 5w-40 full synthetic and so far NO oil usage at all after about 1000km.
Great news!
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Resurecting an old thread... how difficult is it to do rings and shells DIY? with engine in situ?
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It's not too bad. Getting the sump off is a pain as you need extended ribe tools and breaking the sealant takes patience. Putting it back is no fun either!

The actual mechanics of the job is not difficult. Click the link in my sig to my rebuild thread. May give you an idea.
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Guys,
do you have any update to this? Is the upgrade by drilling holes to the piston still working fine? What is the oil consumption now?

My 156 2.0 JTS eats like 1l / 1500km, but it depends heavilly on the driving style. Worst case is highway, when the engine runs permanently above 3000rpm.

I'm considering doing this upgrade to my car during changing of the timing belt and pulleys, which is due in next 10 000km, but I would like to know if is it worth doing or not.

Thanks a lot!
Zb.
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Piston rings

Hi, i think i have to rebuild my 2 litter twin spark engine which used to drink 1 litter oil per 1000kms or less, and i read that there are piston rings that cure this.
Can someone please point me which ones i have to buy?

Regards
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