rangerovers.pub
The only place for a coil spring is up Zebedee's arse
Member
Joined:
Posts: 1345

Great if it works but at over £30 a bottle it's a bit of a gamble. Adding additional bottles might sort my V6's problem but it's knowing where to draw the line, I 'bottled out' (heh pun) after trying one bottle. If only we could buy bottled nanobots lol.

Member
Joined:
Posts: 808

Hmm yeah, maybe i need to try something like that, unfortunately i use(d) long life coolant in the engine as i have a large drum of it and it would appear that the SteelSeal stuff is incompatible with long life coolants. If i go that route i'm gonna have to flush everything out and refill with standard coolant.Probably in excess of £100 by the time i've bought the coolant and the steel seal stuff.

Another additional anecdote from this morning. It was last driven yesterday for a short trip down the shops. Jumped in and went to start it. The engine cranked over once slowly, then paused, then reluctantly cranked over again and then fired up. It then proceeded to produce james bond spec smokescreen all the way to the top of the street. A good 300meters of smoke/steam that completely filled the road behind. Once out on the main road it cleared and drove fine.

Its evidently not happy!

I'm guessing the reluctance to crank was due to water in the cylinder(s)...?

Member
avatar
Joined:
Posts: 7927

Sounds that way although I can't see why it would get worse after a gasket change (unless you've put another leak in). Bit of a bugger about filling it with long life OAT though but I'd be inclined to drain it out, flush it through with a hosepipe and then fill it with plain water and water glass, run it for a while then, once you know it has done the job, drain 5 litres out and chuck in 5 litres of concentrate Ethylene Glycol (£20 from Euro Car Parts).

Rather than spend £30 a on 450ml bottle of Steel Seal, spend £16 on a litre of Steel Seal without the dye in it from https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/224517468608.

Member
Joined:
Posts: 1345

Aragorn wrote:

I'm guessing the reluctance to crank was due to water in the cylinder(s)...?

I'd think so, my boat's SBF V8 did the same when it had water in cylinder(s) from a failed marine (water cooled) exhaust manifold... And it had a knock so I did wonder if hydrolock had bent a rod, but as it turned out at least it hadn't bent a rod.

I won't go into much detail about what I've done to the engine so far to fix it but had to modify my engine crane just to lift it out, found scratches in at least one of the cylinders as though the rings were binding, on removing the piston from that cylinder found it was scored / burned and rings had lost springiness. Took ages honing it (especially cylinder 2), put 8 new pistons in (pita pressing old pistons on and heating little ends to fit rods to new pistons). The only part of rebuilding the engine I haven't personally done is skimming the heads, I took them to a machine shop yesterday to be skimmed. They heads might've been OK but had a bit of pitting around the fire ring area and I didn't want to risk it.

Post crossed with Gilbert's

Member
Joined:
Posts: 808

Its not done the weird cranking thing again, there does seem to be a slow loss of coolant though. Used it a few times over the weekend, and other than the residual pressure everything seems "fine".

Geh, been looking at engine swaps but nothing "easy" exists. M57 has been done, but the only option seems to be to use the early iron block with the ZF 4 speed. I really dont want to go diesel, but if i did i'd want to use the later ally engine with the ZF6 speed box. Unfortunately the adaptors for that only work with the LT230.

A 4.8 or 5.3 LS would be nice (though they are ridiculously expensive in the UK), but again we either adapt to the ZF4 which seems marginal behind such an engine, or we go 4L60E but again the only adaptors that exist are for the LT230.

I guess the "obvious" option is going top hat liners etc. My reluctance is spending what amounts to be a few grand and ending up with something that still is a somewhat flawed engine that doesnt make that much power.

I guess short term, chuck some KSeal in it and see what happens, if it works, great, if it doesnt then i'll just continue driving it and hope it stays in one piece.

Overall its a bit conflicted.

My hope was fix the Range so i can do some more extensive work on the wifes A4 that i've been putting off for some years, but currently i dont trust it enough to assume it'll be safe for her to use full time while i get the A4 sorted out. Murphys law will ensure that if i go ahead with the A4 work the Range will expire immediately. 🤣

Member
avatar
Joined:
Posts: 7927

KSeal will do nothing other than fill the coolant reservoir with copper flakes. Water glass does work though and lasts quite a while. As you say, top hat liners at just over a grand are the way to go or you could go the whole hog and go for a performance version of what you have (see http://www.v8developments.co.uk/engine.htm). Had it been a later Thor with the Bosch Motronic, you could do a swap that I've contemplated and thought shouldn't be too difficult, and fit the BMW 4.4 litre from the pre-2005 L322.

Member
Joined:
Posts: 808

Yeah, when i said "kseal" i guess i just meant it as a generic term for "headgasket in a bottle".

As for the BMW engine, getting the electronics of the M62 running is something i'd be quite happy dealing with. I do love getting into the nitty gritty of a wiring diagram.

The tricky part for me are the mechanical bits. You either need to adapt the M62 to the existing ZF box or somehow make the original or some other gearbox work. Adapting to the existing box also likely means you end up needing compushift or similar, as the factory program is unlikely to match up well enough, and if its wrong you'll wreck the box in no time, as the box uses throttle inputs to lookup engine torque and set line pressures accordingly. If its wrong the clutches will slip and the box will expire.

I've actually spent a lot of time recently looking into the ZF 8HP series boxes. Some clever folks have worked out excellent aftermarket control over those gearboxes, and theres a huge range of conversion kits available to connect the ZF 8HP to all sorts of engines. The boxes are extremely strong and also pretty cheap in the aftermarket as they basically dont fail.

Theres even parts available to connect the 8HP to an LT230, but ofcourse nothing for the P38 transfer case.

Theres also stuff like sump clearance that you can run into with engine conversions.

Some years back i had an Audi 4.2L V8 sat in the front of a defender, I had drawings to mate the audi engine to the R380 etc but the issue that eventually pushed it over the edge was the sump clearance to the front diff/axle. The Audi motor had a front sump bowl, and the oil pump was hanging down inside that bowl. There was no easy way to move the pump and it was clashing hard with the front diff. I could have probably bodged it by raising the engine or installing bigger bump stops but thats not really the result i was going for.

Member
avatar
Joined:
Posts: 7927

Without going any further than just theorising, the way I looked at it was that it should be possible to use the original Thor engine ECU with maybe a bit of reprogramming that would interface with everything else on the car. Admittedly the L322 uses a later 5HP gearbox but the 4HP24 is pretty strong anyway so would it be possible to use the torque converter and bellhousing from the L322 with the original P38 gearbox (or a mix and match of the two)?

Member
Joined:
Posts: 808

Yeah i see what you mean, i think you'd really want to run the original BMW M62 ECU, theres probably enough subtle sensor differences (and likely some larger ones, like ignition timing and cam position sensors) that would mean trying to run an M62 on a Thor ECU wouldnt produce a great result. The BMW V8 also has VVT and electronic throttle, and while its Motronic, its a newer version.

Wether the BMW ECU produces CAN messages that the ZF 4HP is happy with is anyones guess, and its likely it'll want different shift points etc anyway.

I dont know if the bellhousings and torque converters are swappable between 4HP and 5HP. Most of the later ZF boxes have cast-in bellhousings. A quick google search doesnt find much suggesting they probably arent the same.

This is the beauty of what the Defender guys are doing with the M57. You get the engine and box from an X5 (or other 4wd BMW), pop the LT230 on the back with the adaptor kit and the entire engine/box runs with its original factory programming.

Interfacing with a P38 is likely to be fairly easy, the electronics on these old things are actually fairly simple and well understood at this point. The BECM looks complicated, but really its all simple analog signals for the most part.

Member
avatar
Joined:
Posts: 7927

I agree entirely, the BeCM scares most people to death but in reality all it is doing is replacing hundreds of relays with some pretty basic programming and using MOSFETs to do the switching. It isn't actually that complicated at all. Although that is from someone who recently retired after 40 years in electronics and communications.....

Looking at the parts list, it does appear that the bellhousing is bolted onto the main gearbox body on the 5HP series, the same as on the 4HP. Torque converter looks totally different though with the fixings to the flex plate right at the outside edge rather than closer to the centre. Larger flex plate would be needed or, as long as the input on the 5HP is the same so the 4HP torque converter would slot in, then retain the 4HP one.

However, as yours is a GEMS, there's far more incompatibility with no Canbus to start with. Thor V8 to M57 has been done by Sloth, see https://rangerovers.pub/topic/1490-bmw-m57-swap-into-a-bosch-thor-v8-hse-pics

Member
Joined:
Posts: 629

I don't want to rain on your (or anyone else's) parade, but while this fantasizing is enjoyable, simply put, the P38 is the black sheep of the entire Land Rover catalogue and is born and dies as it is. No way to easily get around it.
I am "lucky" to live in a place where cutting and chopping is still a fairly affordable exercise, and I have seen all P38s projects "fail" one way sooner or later. Engine yes, I have seen later 3 liter BMW lumps no problem, but the hassles are in the transmission, and the project(s) are always showing their shortcomings.
First and foremost, we got the driveline on the wrong side, this means we cannot use anything from later cars - from the L322 onwards, the rear driveshaft and diff are where they are supposed to be, i.e. in the center. Ours is off-set to the left.
How would you match that? I had a friend attempting to overcome the issue by using a different fuel tank, move the entire drive to the center, and use a Patrol axle, but you need to chop the entire back lower body to fit it. He abandoned the idea.
I need to go back to my old correspondence, but I've exchanged a number of emails with David (Ashcroft) addressing the issue. There is no solution, plain and simple, except to stick with the ZF and hope it survives.

Engine wise, I had a 4.2V8 Audi lump from my donor S6 years ago, but there is not way to fit it. The Audi powerplant is low and wide, as it fits ahead of the axle, whereas the P38 has a fairly short and narrow engine bay, in spite of the car dimensions. A narrow powerplant like a BMW could fit, but measurements of the M60/M62 engine did not give me full confidence, as our axle has a fair amount of travel. A shop that specializes in protos and other crazy projects suggested go dry sump, but ... ultimately I thought to remove the RV8 from my donor P38 and use it as a test mule, but I do not think I will be able to get around it soon - if I take it to them, they are huge fans of the Merc M113, which is a fantastic powerplant and fairy reliable, and they could try to fit it, but the bill runs by the thousands ....
Also, I would stay away from the Vanos engines, they always (always) fail, no sense to put a troubled powerplant. And as the RV8 gives pain with its blocks, sleeves, and overheating, the M62 engine has its Nikasil/Alusil deterioration, the Vanos endless problems, among others.
Yes, it's got plenty horses to start with, but ....
And this without getting into the electronics hassles, ECM, BeCM, etc.

A friend is trying to rebuild his 4.6 trying to find components from other engines to make some Frankenstein with at least 4.8/4.9 liters, and hoping for more power. So far he's been at it for months, with no tangible result to be seen.

I got so depressed over the subject over the years that sometimes I want to get rid of it and just get a vehicle with a proper engine, but then every time I drive it I still like it and cannot feel the same emotion on another car....
Honestly, I think the best is to bite the bullet and make the RV8 reliable by having a verified block, fitting top hats, a performance cam of some kind, some proper work done on the heads, and perhaps have Mark Adams tune it.
I think this would provide sufficient confidence in the engine itself, perhaps aim at a 260/280hp (which I believe is the upper limit the Thor manifolds support) with a beefier midrange, and continue to use the rest of the vehicle as (poorly) designed without spending endless time trying to address all the other issues ....

Sorry

Member
Joined:
Posts: 528

their is an LS swap on the other side if that's what you want to do . its all documented, so easier than going it alone, all you need is the shaft that connects the 4l60e transmission to the transfer case. technically you could put a 300+ kw ls3 in if its power you want . the question is how much do you want to spend.

Member
Joined:
Posts: 1073

You can build a rover v8 to over 300hp with a mountain of torque to go with it..

Maybe i drive like a granny but i've never found the stock 4.6 lacking in punch, unless it has no compression and the proverbial cam that has had the lumps lathed off it..

Member
Joined:
Posts: 528

you can do better than 300hp but you are still stuck with the hp 24 transmission. the 4L60e can be modified up to a 4L75e which is almost unbreakable. as the old saying goes , their is no substitute for cubic inches.

Member
Joined:
Posts: 808

StrangeRover wrote:

You can build a rover v8 to over 300hp with a mountain of torque to go with it..

Maybe i drive like a granny but i've never found the stock 4.6 lacking in punch, unless it has no compression and the proverbial cam that has had the lumps lathed off it..

Mine feels lacking down low, but if you get it in sport mode and right up the rpm's it moves along just fine (though it doesnt sound particularly great up there). And thats an engine thats evidently pretty worn out. I'm sure a fresh 4.6 with a mild cam and say ~240-250hp would be perfectly fine. Its not a sports car after all.

The problem is more that you'll put thousands into a Rover V8 to get it to that state, and its not like its then suddenly reliable. Its still the same engine with many flaws, its just a fresh one. Thats the bit that i'm wary of. Furthermore its been indicated that getting hold of certain parts is difficult. For example finding high quality rockers and shafts seems like a complete minefield. Lifiters are similar though a few companies do seem to make decent ones, you pay the price for that. I've seen folk with freshly built engines wipe a camshaft out in a 100miles just down to bad luck. My own car had a full engine replacement by land rover at 6 years old, so even the factory bits werent great. Its also a fairly inefficient design meaning higher fuel consumption than a modern engine would achieve.

You can pull a 20 year old M57 out of a scrap E39 and pretty much know it'll just work. It might want a new turbo at some point, but the actual engine is solid. And the same goes for most modern engines. Thus the question, do you spend the time/money making a good Rover V8, or do you instead spend it making some other more reliable modern engine fit instead.

Member
avatar
Joined:
Posts: 7927

leolito wrote:

A friend is trying to rebuild his 4.6 trying to find components from other engines to make some Frankenstein with at least 4.8/4.9 liters, and hoping for more power. So far he's been at it for months, with no tangible result to be seen.

Why bother when he could just buy one off the shelf? See http://www.v8developments.co.uk/50long.htm, good for 350-400bhp depending on cam.

Just because the engine is offset isn't a problem. There's a Brit living in the US that has fitted an LS1 with 4L60e into a P38 and all it needed was an adapter to mate the GM gearbox to the existing transfer case. He's got everything, BeCM, EAS, ABS and all instruments working exactly as they should too. Overfinch used to fit an American V8 (a Ford I think) into the P38 using the original 4HP24.

While the BMW engine from the L322 may not be the best and a lot of people complain about the Vanos system, but if doing a conversion you wouldn't put a knackered old engine in, you'd at least rebuild it first. That way it will last just as long as it would have done when new. It was used in numerous different BMW models and other than a few that have suffered problems, most are still running fine. Probably down to maintenance just like any other engine, look after it and it will look after you, neglect it and you are asking for trouble.

I wouldn't agree that the M57 is a good engine as it can explode to the point where BMW have now refused to sell any more M57 engined cars to UK police forces (and almost al of them had a fleet including 330d, 530d and X5) after a number of problems, including one where the engine exploded, burst into flames and the officer inside died. My local force now run Volvo, Skoda VRS and the odd Audi instead.

Member
Joined:
Posts: 528

i didn't know Martin was a brit, learn something new every day.

Member
Joined:
Posts: 1073

Internal components of the Rover V8 are quite strong, Richards 400+ thousand mile motor is a good example,

Of course neglect and abuse it and the motor will deteriorate quickly.

As for the M62 idea with vanos the m62 produces 280hp and and 440nm and you can't really get more from it..

Putting the cost of fitting the M62 aside if it is even possible, a camshaft, tornado map and some headwork you'd get a 4.6 to the same level if not slightly more powerful, so swing and roundabouts eh!!

As for diesel!!!!

eek..

..

Member
avatar
Joined:
Posts: 7927

mad-as wrote:

i didn't know Martin was a brit, learn something new every day.

If you are referring the Marty, he was born in NZ but moved to the UK with his parents as a child so has dual nationality and has moved back and forth over the years. He's very recently (in the last 3 weeks or so) relocated to NZ as there is more work for his day job there than in the UK (less people capable of doing what he does).

Member
Joined:
Posts: 528

no , Martin Cordwell "left lane trucking", he's the one that done the LS conversion in USA . is he the one you are referencing in your comment .
Marty did help with the electrical side of things along with others that had input.