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Preachermannn 03-10-2005 09:15 AM

Ring job question and timing chain question
Good morning fellow Saturnites!
It's a beautiful day here in the sunny south - rejoice!
I've got a basic question about a ring job. Of what I have read on this site, the rings on these Saturns are a weak spot with the motor. I've been thinking about re-ringing my daughter's 95 Saturn SC1, 130,000 miles on a 1.9 liter four banger. Currently, it burns about 1 qt. of oil every 500 -700 miles, depending upon the kind of driving she is doing, (lots of highway verses lots of around town). Are the aftermarket rings better that the original? Are there any issues that I need to know of before I dive in and do the job?
Secondly, as long as I'm tearing into the motor, I'm thinking I might as well tackle that thar timing chain. Question is basically the same. What brand chain should I shop around for? Are there ones I need to be wary of before I pull out the old wallet and start laying down bucks?
Thanks in advance for the help!

SaturnTech 03-10-2005 10:56 AM

Re: Ring job question and timing chain question
Go for the Saturn timing can get high performance aftermarket rings, but the stock ones are fine. The weak spot isn't the rings, they don't break, they carbon up and seize in the piston groove.....You'll need to clean the pistons well while they are out. We have an acid bath at our shop we use to clean pistons overnight, they look like brand new afterwards.

sps SOHC 03-10-2005 11:12 AM

Re: Ring job question and timing chain question
You know the weak spot DEFINITLEY isn't the rings. I am rebuilding my engine right now. It was burning about 1 qt every 900 miles. When I took the rings out they looked fine, not even really that dirty, not worn...I could have re-used them but I had new ones.

The weak spot was my valve guide seals, they were leakin oil into my combustion chamber and even causing a misfire. Pretty bad. It is much easier to change the valve guide seals than it is to change the rings.

Get an entire new OEM timing kit from or
Change other things like the oil pump and relief valve, get an overhaul gasket kit so you can replace all the gaskets and seals.

I've heard bad things about aftermarket rings such as the total seal rings.

Your rings may be sticking so do an MMO soak a few times and see if things get better. I did but it didn't get better so that told me right there that my rings were fine and something else was the problem...but I did the whole rebuild regardless.

Preachermannn 03-10-2005 01:37 PM

Re: Ring job question and timing chain question
Hummmmmm - you know, I hadn't thought of that, but it sure does make sense to me. Having owned a few Chevy V-8's which are famous for bad valve guide seals, I should have thought of that. It just goes to show I'm not scratching my head in the right spots.
I've done the MMO soak twice, the SeaFoam soak twice, the "soak in the tub with bubble bath and a cold beer" three times this year, (that was for me in case you were wondering). Oil consumption continues to be the same, (maybe even a little worse).
The only thing that continues to confuse me is that I don't see much smoke coming from the tail-pipe. Someone told me that was because the Cat. converter "cleans" the oil-smoke before it reaches the world of living things. Now that makes me wonder if I'm not well on my way to toasting the converter by all the oil going through the exhaust. Any ideas?

SaturnTech 03-10-2005 02:24 PM

Re: Ring job question and timing chain question
yes the cat does get it hot enough to burn the oil out of th exhaust before it gets into the atmosphere. And yes it will eventually lead to its demise.

sps SOHC 03-10-2005 02:40 PM

Re: Ring job question and timing chain question
I've done the MMO soak twice ... Oil consumption continues to be the same, (maybe even a little worse). [/QUOTE]

That's EXACTLY what happened to me. I can't see much smoke except at the higher rpms. Part of your problem may be oil leaks. My oil pan had a few leaks and there was one coming from some strange place that I never figured out. Looked like it was coming out right through my cyl. head above the header.

You can pull the head and timing system in a day or so. Clean everything up nice. Decarbonize those pistons. Clean out the head, get a valve job done and new valve guide seals. Replace other parts as needed and slap everything back in there. You will be ready to roll. I bet your oil consumption will drop next to nothing. :yes: (that's what I'm going for on mine)

oh yeah, and replace the PCV w/ an OEM one when you pull the head.

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