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Old 08-15-2019, 11:08 AM   #21
Waiex191
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Default Re: 99 SL2 DOHC rebuild?

Congrats! Regarding the rough idle, did you replace the motor mounts? Or just reuse?

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Old 08-15-2019, 11:39 AM   #22
TomKam
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Default Re: 99 SL2 DOHC rebuild?

I replaced the top engine mount and the lower transmission mount. Didnít do anything to the others.

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Old 09-18-2019, 07:19 PM   #23
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Default Re: 99 SL2 DOHC rebuild?

Iím hoping someone can shine some light on this and point me in the right direction. Iíve been trying to chase down this rough idle problem. Iíve put about 400 miles on the rebuild, I get roughly 25 mpg. The car is obviously running rich due to the poor mileage and the black soot forming on the concrete under the muffler. The car actually drives pretty well tho, no hesitation, has decent power and is throwing no dtcís...Iíve done a lot of troubleshooting with no results (spotless intake and throttle body, new ects and connector, new air intake sensor, checked iacv, wires, coils, ICM, EGR, new MAP, new O2, new T-stat, new wix 33731 fuel filter and checked proper psi). Vacuum gauge hooked up to the PCV port to the intake bounces between 15-17in hg at idle.

I drove the car this morning and got it up to normal operating temp. Parked it and let it sit for 2 hours. The car wasnít hot but still warm to the touch. I followed the compression test procedure I found in this forum, and came up with these results:
Cyl #1 - 152 psi 10 compression strokes
Cyl #2 - 150 psi 10 compression strokes
Cyl #3 - 150 psi 10 compression strokes
Cyl #4 - 150 psi 10 compression strokes

Do these readings point to incorrect timing? Or where do I go from here? This is the same gauge I used to diagnose my burnt exhaust valve, so I feel pretty good about the accuracy of the gauge. Any help is appreciated, thanks in advance!

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Old 09-18-2019, 07:38 PM   #24
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Default Re: 99 SL2 DOHC rebuild?

*edit, in the compression test, each cylinder reached itís max compression by the 8th stroke.

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Old 09-18-2019, 07:39 PM   #25
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Default Re: 99 SL2 DOHC rebuild?

For sooty exhaust and poor fuel economy, I'd suspect two things - either a bad ECTS or high fuel pressure. Sounds like you have checked both. What temperature does live data see from the ECTS?

...
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Old 09-18-2019, 08:15 PM   #26
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Default Re: 99 SL2 DOHC rebuild?

Fully warm it reads around 200 F. A little less if Iím driving at 60, a little more if Iím in stop and go traffic. When the engine is cold the air intake temp and the engine coolant temp are within 1 degree of each other.

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Old 09-18-2019, 08:26 PM   #27
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1998 SC2
Default Re: 99 SL2 DOHC rebuild?

The other thing that can cause this is an exhaust leak and I mean a pin hole sized leak.
Exhaust leak check.
--Locate a low pressure high volume air source, reversible vacuum cleaner, large fan, leaf blower or what ever you can find.
--Loosely couple to cold exhaust at the tail pipe, or direct fan at tail pipe.
--Spray every inch of the exhaust between the head and CAT outlet flange with a mixture of 2 or 3 drops of dish soap and water in a spray bottle.
--Pay close attention to the lower flange, lower support clamp, and flex connector.
--The flex connector is under the protective braid so it requires quite a bit of solution to show any leaks.

As the engine has ben out and back in the exhaust may have failed while you were not looking.

The other common issue is the plug wire routing so actually check it, don't
assume.

Ignition wire routing as seen when looking at the engine and coils from the front, hood open, your left to right.

Engine
1-2-3-4

4-1-2-3
coil towers

Connect the matching numbers with a plug wire.


Do not use any fine wire electrode plugs.

The fuel control system is seeing a lean signal from the front O2 sensor and dumping in gas.

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Old 09-18-2019, 08:30 PM   #28
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1998 SC2
Default Re: 99 SL2 DOHC rebuild?

If you actually want to get any meaningful compression data then use this procedure and it makes no difference hot or cold. Fully charge the battery firs with a real battery charger.

To prevent washing the cylinders down with fuel remove the PCM B fuse to shut off the fuel pump, injectors, and ignition before starting the test. Remove all spark plugs and block the throttle open. Use a low charge rate battery charger to fully charge the battery before conducting the test.

Crank the engine until the gauge quits increasing and compare both the final pressure and number of compression strokes to reach the max pressure, cylinder to cylinder. You can do this test either cold or hot or warm just mention it when stating results.

For example if you find all cylinders produce a final reading of 200psi but the compression cycles are as follows: 1-8, 2-6, 3-8, 4-14 then it should be obvious that cylinder #4 has a serious problem with leakage past either the valves or compression rings.

FSM states the MINIMUM number of compression cycles is 10 and a Fully charged battery is required to obtain the full 250RPM cranking speed.

Nominal compression for a high mileage good condition DOHC is 190-220psi and SOHC is 175-205psi.

It may very well take more than 10 cycles to reach maximum steady pressure. Be ware that over tightening a tester creates a leak. Quit tightening when the o-ring touches the plug seat and no more. The numbers you got do indicate that the pistons are working fine. I am not sure that the cam timing could be off enough to drop pressure that low. What procedure exactly did you use to install the sprockets and chain and set timing???

Last edited by OldNuc; 09-18-2019 at 08:35 PM..

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Old 09-18-2019, 09:11 PM   #29
TomKam
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Default Re: 99 SL2 DOHC rebuild?

Wires are in the correct order...I found the procedure for setting the timing on this site. The cboss and waiex threads helped me through most of the rebuild, including setting the timing...I tried to take as many pictures as I could when I put it together, and from what I can see the timing is correct. I think thereís a pretty good chance I could have a leak or two in the exhaust tho, should I address that first before assuming the worst and having to disassemble some stuff?

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Old 09-19-2019, 09:12 AM   #30
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Default Re: 99 SL2 DOHC rebuild?

If the exhaust is leaking then that is what needs to be fixed and get bubble tight before ripping things apart. As the engine actually runs those 150psi numbers are bogus as it will not start and run at 150psi. Your leak can be at any of the mechanical connections including the head to manifold, lower manifold and cat outlet. Any holes in the pipe and/or flex connector have to be fixed if any of the pipe between the head and cat inlet are held together with clamps those must also be welded connections. Aftermarket exhaust head pipes do not last and usually also do not fit. You go to an exhaust shop and buy a custom bent SS pipe assembly. Does the manifold have a preCAT in it? If so that should be rodded out as a blocked preCAT will cause your problem.

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Old 09-20-2019, 01:06 PM   #31
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Default Re: 99 SL2 DOHC rebuild?

Thanks for the info!...I located a sizeable leak along the top edge of the exhaust manifold where it meets the head. I snugged the bolts up, and of course ended up snapping off a stud and I canít get a vise grips or anything else on it...I found a thread that mentions using a 3/64Ē bit to drill a pilot hole, then an 1/8Ē drill bit deep enough to be able to tap a torx bit in and then work it out that way. Is there a better way to remove the stud than that?...also, I found a set of studs on rock auto, M8-1.25, 40mm long. Part number 674001, will that be a good replacement?

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Old 09-20-2019, 01:44 PM   #32
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Default Re: 99 SL2 DOHC rebuild?

If you haven't already taken the manifold off, do that first. Then get a nut on what's left of the stud (assuming there's a bit sticking out) and weld it on. Generally comes right out.
Won't work if the stud snapped off inside the head, if that happened you're stuck with drilling and praying it says on-center with a non-flat surface to drill into.

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Old 09-20-2019, 02:00 PM   #33
TomKam
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Default Re: 99 SL2 DOHC rebuild?

I havenít taken the manifold off yet as I donít have everything to repair it yet, but the part of the stud that broke is longer than the width of the manifold, so I doubt there will be any threads to work with

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Old 09-20-2019, 04:41 PM   #34
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Default Re: 99 SL2 DOHC rebuild?

There is only 1 way to get that broken stud out if it is flush with the head. All of the supposed drill etc procedures here require incredible skill with a hand drill on a steel stud in aluminum, slip and your head is instant scrap.

Remove manifold and see what you have, vice grips are not likely do much more than make a bigger mess. If the stud is flush or below the gasket face then the following is about the only thing that usually works.

Clean manifold and head gasket face. Carefully measure the diameter of the stud hole in the manifold, this is critical.

With the stud hole in hand you have to find a standard tube with a 1/8" ID and an OD that is a slip fit with that stud hole, it does exist and once you post that diameter I know where to find it. This tube will be the drill guide so if you bust the drill bit you can pull it back out and beyond that you will be drilling into the center of the broken bolt.

You will need a left hand 1/8" cobalt drill bit and your drill guide. Put the manifold in place with no gasket and pull up the nuts hand tight.

Look at he broken stud hole and verify that it all looks concentric tweak manifold as required.

Install drill guide and then on very low speed drill into the stud do not try and force the drill. Periodically pull bit and guide to blow out chips, this is important.

When the drill catches in teh stud it will unscrew it from the head and you will feel it in the drill, let is unscrew and bring out the drill, drill guide and broken stud.

Do not rush this as it requires paying close attention to what you are doing.

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Old 09-20-2019, 11:33 PM   #35
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Default Re: 99 SL2 DOHC rebuild?

Thanks OldNuc. That makes perfect sense actually, and I can see how that will work...Iím busy this weekend but Iíll try to measure the diameter as soon as I can...I wonít have the replacement parts for a week or so, will it hurt the car to drive it until I do? I donít usually put more than 10 miles a day on it, but being able to run errands is nice. It doesnít seem to run any different with the broken stud than it did before.

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Old 09-21-2019, 07:53 AM   #36
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Default Re: 99 SL2 DOHC rebuild?

Will not hurt it as long as you take it easy on it.

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Old 09-29-2019, 07:31 PM   #37
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Default Re: 99 SL2 DOHC rebuild?

Got the stud out!!...Iím having difficulty getting an airtight fit tho. Is there the possibility that the manifold is warped or something? Iím beyond the torque specs and still canít get a good seal, but I donít want to tighten them anymore for fear of snapping another stud...if it is warped, can it be machined or am I left with finding a replacement?

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Old 09-29-2019, 11:12 PM   #38
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Default Re: 99 SL2 DOHC rebuild?

Another trick is welding the tube to the broke stud.

Oreilies sells the studs and nuts in the help section pretty cheap, use the studs for the starter next time it is out also, way easier to get the starter back in.

Do you have a straight edge to see if the manifold is flat?

Or use a long file and see if the manifold is flat. I just swapped motors on my 00 SW2 and ran a file across the exhaust manifold as it had a few burrs, the outer edges were a bit higher. I tightened from the center out in 3 steps. Seemed to seal decently for me, so I reused the multi-layer gasket, as the new gasket from Amazon was folded in half before they shipped it to me.

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98 SL2 Pearl White auto, 190k miles, 11/7/15 RIP
S-series Shop Manual: http://www.saturnfans.com/forums/showthread.php?t=177672

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Old 10-17-2019, 07:11 PM   #39
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Default Re: 99 SL2 DOHC rebuild?

Alright so I had the exhaust manifold resurfaced and put on another new gasket. Although it sealed it up, the engine showed no improvement at all...hereís my question tho, when I was installing the timing chain, I remember it being a tight fit getting the tensioner in place. After re-reading some things, it appears you want to be sure to have the slack on the tensioner side when installing. Is it possible that I could have lined the links up correctly but had the slack on the wrong side, causing the timing to be slightly off? I have the valve cover off and when I bring the crank to the 12 oíclock position both cams appear to be at the 12 oíclock position, and I can see in through the alignment holes to the holes in the head, so it seems like things are lined up, but maybe Iím missing something?

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Old 10-19-2019, 03:44 PM   #40
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Default Re: 99 SL2 DOHC rebuild?

I found a great local machine shop. They ordered all the parts, rebuilt the head, bored the cylinders, cleaned all the parts, and it was $1400 all done. I put about $3K into the car total. It runs great.

There is no reason you can't reuse your crank or rods. The machine shop can go through all of that and order the right bearings as well.

For a '99 you need new conrod bolts as they are torque to yield and that won't come in your engine parts kit. There is a reference in my thread.

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