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r10tz0r

AFH time, Let's go! 6n 16v 3dr Black Magic Pearl, she's a keeper!

166 posts in this topic

well folks, it's taken me 9 months but I think I've finally got it! this is it and it's something that I was sure was the problem all along!

 

ever since I bought it, it just didn't like to pull over 6k RPM, this was evidenced when I took it to the dyno day and it failed to put out a respectable number, achieving 85BHP on premium fuel, I came away a bit sour, knowing that the engine has had a part refresh ( head rebuilt around 3-4 years ago) I was at least expecting over 90. I came away and pondered, looking at the data and figured it could either be one of two things, ignition or fuel.

 

I have spent a while over the months tinkering, pondering, renewing parts to try and find the root cause of the problem, I spoke to the old owner who was quite sure it was a fueling problem that was causing the power problem.

 

every part I've replaced has changed the car in different ways, placebo effect often told me it was better, only to realise a week later there was no major change and the problem still existed, and I don't drive everywhere over 6k rpm so to check the effects of the changes didn't happen often, but then again, the loss of power was consistent through out the rev range.

 

before I started to really dig deep into the meat of things I decided to make a change that wouldn't cost me anything if I was careful about it, and I had kind of exhausted every other rational possibility, I grabbed some tools and went out to the car.

 

tools of choice? a 10mm socket and a 5mm allen key

 

removed the plastic trim of the side of the head that houses the EGR and spark plug leads with the 10mm socket, grabbed the 5mm allen key and loosened the distributor and moved it the tiniest amount, effectively retarding the timing a bit

 

wVwDXv7.jpg

 

The white mark was the one applied to the dizzy presumably when the head was redone, however at that point it had an incorrect cap on

 

I moved the timing back ever so slightly about 1 degree or so and took her for a drive, she was quite gutless and didn't like to really get high on the revs, and when I pulled up after around 2 -3 miles she was stinking hot!

 

so on the moors in the pitch black I let her cool down a bit and loosened the dizzy off and rotated it the other way, effectively advancing the ignition timing

 

sv3XoHE.jpg

 

started her up and off we went again but right off the bat the engine was so much more responsive, it sounded throatier and just generally felt smoother, however worried that advancing an engine too much can cause huge problems I eased her into it with 2nd gear pulls, part load from 3k RPM to 4, then from 3k to 4.5 etc, then full load pulls and she just did it, no bogging, no stumbling at 6k just straight right up to the redline.

 

took her for a few 0-4th pulls and she just sang all the way. very pleased, I went home let it be.

 

now for the long term, how does she start cold? how does she run while warming up? how quickly does she warm up? hows the day to day drive ability? how does she cope with low RPM high load scenarios?

 

before the change starting wasn't a problem, I'd let the oil circulate for 30 seconds or so and then after a few miles of town traffic she'd be up to temperature, generally by the time I'd got 2/3rds home she'd be warm, drive ability wasn't too bad, it felt like I had buckets of torque at 3k but would bog below that and obviously didn't like going up too high, pulling out at opportunist moments was sometimes a chore when the revs bogged.

 

now starting is not a problem, still first turn of the key, at first warming up would cause some idle issues, but I can put this down to having an EGR fault and the engine re-learning, the more I drive the less of a problem I am having (today's trip home was faultless), she's a little slower to warm up, not by much, I'll maybe be 75% to 80% through my journey home before shes warm, drive ability has changed, where before I felt like I had buckets at 3k and nothing below, I feel I have more at low RPM, but have less of a peak around 3k as a result, but because of this she doesn't bog as much meaning opportunist moments are a lot less stressful :D

 

a static test reveals some things as well, while actuating the throttle by hand she just picks up revs surprisingly quickly, I don't need to give the throttle "full yank" to get the engine to high RPM's infact I even bounced of the limiter before realizing how sharp it is, the engine is a lot smoother and less "noisy" at high RPM, and the 2nd biggest difference is the heat, before I did this, the rad fans would be on when I got home, and the heat under the bonnet would be quite hot, now the fans haven't come on once after a journey home and during the static test, the heat under the bonnet was just warm.

 

after finding all this after just the smallest change to the timing I can't stress enough how much of a difference the tiniest change can make, I mean when I moved the dizzy, I moved it just a little bit to see if it would make ANY difference, turns out it did!

 

now I need to check the timing properly with VCDS to confirm my experiences, I haven't noticed any knock or pinking but there's a good chance my rack of the eye setup is far from optimal, plus I leave myself quite a bit of leeway running shell v-power (98 RON), I could put standard fuel in and blow it up if the timing is too much!

 

7vQwuTy.jpg

 

Now to give her a good service and prepare to find my fate at the dyno day!

 

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On 20/12/2015 at 21:03, r10tz0r said:

 

0EhBj2p.jpg

 

That bootlid is from the car my afh engine in my mk1 arosa is from. 

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9 hours ago, Stereoflaver said:

That bootlid is from the car my afh engine in my mk1 arosa is from. 

haha! you get it from phil (retro performance) in stockton?

 

I got some other bits from him too for this :D

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On 9 February 2016 at 19:54, r10tz0r said:

So I saw a picture of a black polo with standard indicators on and it just looked brilliant! so I dug out my old ones from Emma and put them on, lovely :D

TWrS6Cq.jpg

X6Y6nGM.jpg

also took 6n2 rears off and put Emmas on until I grab some valver rears, I have some in the pipeline but overspent so waiting on some funds lol

fhRbIOp.jpg

need to get them solitudes sorted now, that's a long time saying now over a year and a half hahaha

Love this.  The clear indicators are specific to the 16v model and were standard.  

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56 minutes ago, Buggirl said:

Love this.  The clear indicators are specific to the 16v model and were standard.  

Thanks :)

 

Ive actually gone back to the clears up front now and have the darker 16v lights on the rear :D

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Good choice!

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loaded the fam up to go shopping, pulled out of a junction, clutch in to change to second BAM foot to the floor, thought the pedal box had gone, rolled it down the road a bit and pulled over, saw the clutch cable was loose above the box, sigh of relief!

 

got the car pulled home and got on ECP, oredered a replacement cable that night, picked up next morning and fit, adjusted so the bite isnt too low or too high and managed to get to santa's grotto by 10am, surprisingly easy to fit the cable if im honest!

 

also pulled some timing bck out of the dizzy as it was causing some high revving idle problems (although not sure if it was coincidence with really cold weather), might crank it back up for the dyno day :D

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Any pics with the clear lenses?

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22 hours ago, Buggirl said:

Any pics with the clear lenses?

 

yeahquite a few in this post here -

 

might have to give it a minute to load the pics are they are quite big :)

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free time off work means I can spend a day messing around with the car, started off checking out the rust on the underside of the body, turned out a bit worse than I had hoped :o

 

passenger side isnt too bad, its basically where the rubber grommet goes that has corroded, and is solid otherwise, I could potentially wire wheel, kurust, glass up and paint and it would be ok.

9tt1bWu.jpg

 

however the driver side is much, much worse, not only has the hole that houses the rubber bung completely rotted away, the surrounding area can be flexed by hand, so the rot has definately sunk its teeth deep there,

PMIHagQ.jpg

 

so that side definately needs cutting out and a replacement piece welding in, and if its being done on this side, might as well do the otherside too, not a major task to do, but I dont have a welder, or facilities to do it, so will source replacement cuts and prep the area for a professional to do.

 

I ordered a set of drums as I had a snapped wheel bolt in one drum on the rear, so set about doing that job, took the affected drum off only to find I was unable to remove the inner bearing races, which annoyed me slightly, but I only have basic tools so have to take it on the chin, however I managed to get the snapped bolt out and surprisingly the threads are fine so was able to reuse the original drum, which to be fair was practically new as was the hardware inside so it wasn't essential thet they were replaced, so I have two brand new drums sat until either I do actually need them or until someone decides they'd like to buy them haha.

 

looking forward now to the dyno day :D

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Yipee!

 

went to the first autotest of the year near me just for a kick about and a laugh had a real good time, first layout saw me hitting cones left, right and centre, something about the 6n's when you put in a load of left to right steering effort the PAS pump just gives up on life and steering goes really heavy, so when you are trying to navigate the twisty sections at pace and the steering gives in you have to dial it right back and bring out the guns to turn it haha.

 

second layout was less technical and more free flowing which the Polo loved, even the twisty bits I managed to power through as it was uphill so weight was off the wheels, I found having a bit of wheelspin and thus keeping the revs up helped aswell, but obviously only ideal in certain circumstances.

 

there was really nothing to right home about on the first layout, even without cone penalties I was mediocre at best, but I did manage to join the dots and light it up on the second layout, my claim to fame being the second fastest driver on the layout, beating some grizzled veterans too, so while it does have its quirks it definately is capable. I do think I've broken the physical handbrake a bit, on the 4th run in the second layout, I pulled it a bit hard and felt something give, and it didn't quite lock the wheels the same afterwards, but it still fully works, so needs inspection.

 

apologies for the audio on the video, its taken from my dashcam, you can hear my mate daz squeal everytime I do a skid haha

 

 

Edited by r10tz0r
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I'm beginning a series of videos on fixing problems on 6n's, every problem I find I'm going to try and document the diagnosis and repair on video to better help others in the same situation, whether it be something small and seemingly easy for us grizzled veterans to the more technical and longer repairs. hopefully they will help others that are in need of advice, I'd like to have a guide that is easily findable within a minute or two of googling, that provides accurate content,

 

sometimes forum threads can be unanswered for days, even weeks, and social media (mainly facebook) can result in a myriad of misinformation.

 

If you can view a problem "live" within a few minutes that has all the same symptoms you are having, that shows the procedure involved in repair, and fixes the problem, whats not to lose?

 

we don't all have access to Autodata, Elsawin or VCDS and garage time can be costly, so I hope to save some pounds and make some smiles with this series.

 

to kick things off, my first video is ready to view here and features a quite basic and common problem, headlight bulbs :D

 

 

 

for those of you that have seen my Timing Chain replacement video for the Almera, the more technical videos will follow the same format, little to no music, locations of fasteners etc with tooling needed and torque specifications listed in the descriptions.

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This is great as same side side light has gone on mine!  Got to replace it Saturday.

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haha what a coincidence! are you still coming to the dyno day?

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Doesn't look promising I am afraid.  Want to but work might stop play as I am on call!  If I don't make it have an awesome day!

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that's a shame, it was a good day!

 

massive result for me from the Dyno Day, got the result I wanted, although the live readout panicked me a little coz it looked like the power just dropped straight off at the top, when it calculated the readings I cam out with 97.5 BHP and 85.8 ft/lb

 

I've crudely overlayed the graphs, last years in red and this years in blue, you can see they are very even upto around 3.4k RPM then the new graph just eeks out the advantage until 5k RPM where the old graph just falls over and dies torque wise, and the new graph stays flat with a peak towards the end!

 

7vWkOKz.jpg

 

This is the beauty of a graph, if I was to say I gained an extra 6 ft/lb of torque it wouldnt sound all that great, but look at the graph and you can see a huge area where it was missing before, simply from the ignition timing being too retarded at higher RPM.

 

 

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clean and tidy. glad you wanna do the floor properly, i've owned some right patch workers in the past. 

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well thanks to rob for a fun afternoon, I've got some decent panels to weld in on the floorpan now, plenty of meat on them for the welder to trim them how he likes, time to get them prepped and hopefully get them put in sometime soon :)

 

tpTUV2B.jpg

 

 

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Maybe she loves me, maybe not!

 

she's developed a coolant leak from where the sensor plugs in, so I was poking about yesterday, went to fire her up at lunchtime and coilpack once again decided it hated life, so had to nip and get another one of those, not sure whats causing the failure, but this is the second in 8 months!

 

 

Anyhow got a new coil on her and she let rip once again :)

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Sorted the coolant leak, turned out to be the o-ring around the temperature sensor, so replaced that along with the plastic clip, but as is historically the fashion with these things, you fix one thing and another breaks, seems the thermostat is "sticky", so I need to open up the cooling system again and replace the thermostat :D:D

 

Central locking pump gave up working, and combined with a very stiff drivers door lock resulted in a couple of days of cross car acrobatics whilst I entered and exited through the passenger door. Turns out that water had somehow collected in the pump and corroded a connection in the pump, I removed the affected wire and re-bridged on the back side of the board, and she's working brilliantly again, luckily it wasn't a component link that became corroded, just a blank wire, but would have been the same type of fix had it been.

 

Also took  the car up around the lakes for a bit of a tour of the country and roads round there, good fun :)

 

1RJPB7M.jpg

EOBhtbO.jpg

 

Also began helping Daz strip and rebuild his E36 M3, if you are interested I am filming bits and bats, the first part of which can be found here

 

 

 

I also snapped a few pics of my shiny valver 8>)

gBL2GUU.jpg

KHLzIgZ.jpg

uAROsNm.jpg

gBtbaa0.jpg

 

I haven't yet been to get the floor sorted, I've had a busy month or so, and my marshaling duties are back in full force at harewood, but it is on the to-do list.

 

I am wanting more and more for a E36 Touring too, but really don't want to sacrifice the polo for one, nearly everyone who has moved on from the 16v says they regret it, so maybe I'll try and have both, sure the other half has different plans though :D:D:-o

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I'm hankering for a bmw 5 series or b7 avant tdi. Lol. Once my insurance ends. Half my mind says keep it and the other half is telling me to sell it or break it. I know I wont be able to insure both cars  :( and I know I will miss this little olo.

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Looking good!  Really love how you have got her sitting what have you lowered her by?

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On 3/23/2017 at 06:01, Buggirl said:

Looking good!  Really love how you have got her sitting what have you lowered her by?

 

Thanks!

 

Shes on -40mm springs and standard shocks, definately needs to go lower, when I have the money and time I'm planning on coilovers as I really don't like how the shock/spring combo works, the ride is jarring over small bumps but wallowy under loads, exactly the opposite of what I'd prefer, and take her down another 20-30mm

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Posted (edited)

found a local body welder who is happy to weld in the panels for me, £40 per side which sounds a fair deal!

 

also, remember when I said something "gave" in the autotest when using the hadbrake? turns out it was the spotwelds holding the handbrake base/bracket to the exhaust tunnel, so I'll ask him to run a cheeky bead down each side of that just to hold it down, as it now flexes every time I use it.

Edited by r10tz0r
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Posted (edited)

bit of a pic heavy update, but she's had surgery today and made it through.

 

astonishingly, this the first time the cars been to a mechanic since I got it, and to be fair I was nervous all day long, giving the keys to someone I don't really know, theres so many quirks and whatnot I take for granted, I had to detail everything to the mechanic like I was handing him my newborn baby haha, plus the wait for the call to say she was done. I was having nightmares last night that something went wrong and she was up in flames :o

 

luckily everything went to a T which is unusual given my luck and the pictures below give the story.

 

So last time the car was MOT'd there was concern about corrosion, it wasnt until I peeled back the carpet the concerns were realised

9UeLdLE.jpg1jAjXwu.jpg

 

this realisation set about the hunt for some fresh metal to replace the holes, I managed to find a nice guy who goes by the name @robdaviesss who was happy for me to cut two nice chunks out of his shell (thanks rob:heart:)

got them home and set forth a plan

R2xGiXo.jpg

 

first thing first I had to find a welder, I wasn't too keen to buy a welder myself and do this as my first ever weld, it's an art, I don't do art.

 

so I managed to find a chap who came recommended by a few folk, so I popped down to see him, nice chap, asked how much and he said £40 a side, but I have to prep everything, not a problem, so I set about it

S6zz8CB.jpgDjzfo4K.jpg

 

carpet out and the holes get bigger, decided to chip back the sound deadening till I came across clean steel

nutY3oP.jpg

0lcmVcg.jpg

 

so thats the templates to take for the weld in bits, so set to stripping them back and treating them with anti-rust

P6XoxMn.jpgkDACVmh.jpg

 

then coated them front and back in a bit of paint to help prevent any more rust

BVoRGoz.jpg

 

booked in with the welder and stripped the car a little more, rear seats, passenger seat, made it as easy as I could for him, and voila!

j2mRZ7A.jpgYKIzMjJ.jpg

 

BONUS POINTS :star:

I was only expecting a welded in panel, I would finish the rest. Turns out he seam sealed the welds on the inside, and completely undercoated the underbody for me too, not just the welded panels!

I was so pleased, so I went to pay and he said to just call it £30 a side! I paid him £70 and told him to get a few beers, he's earned it!

 

I've got to let the seam sealer dry, then clean out the floor, and then paint over the lot for maximum protection, the plugs are on order so will be picking them up soon.

 

Oh and remember the dodgy handbrake?

nbO0wxT.jpg

 

Sick handbrake turns in the autotest did that, got to point where the handbrake was like 8-10 clicks and the bracket was like a banana, it was practically holding the cars weight and the middle spot welds were getting weak.

 

7dZq2US.jpg

 

BOOM

back to the 3 click life like I'd never left it :joy:

 

I'm pretty pleased right now, will update when its all painted and everything refit, it amazing how one repair can totally remove the dread of all the other things left to fix, for now...

 

 

 

Edited by r10tz0r
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