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TDI Conversions Discussions on converting non TDIs into TDIS. More general items can be answered better in other sections. This is ideal for issues that don't have an overlap and are very special to swaping engines.

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Old November 9th, 2018, 16:35   #1
joelsolomonson
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Default Looking for Shadetree mechanic for vanagon conversion

Hi All,
I've lost my garage space where I was about to do a 98 AHU swap into my vanagon. I've been planning and collecting parts to do the conversion for years and I probably have 95% of everything I need to complete it. I don't want to put the project on hold so I'm looking for someone who can do the swap for me. I'm not in a rush to get it done so time isn't an issue. It'd be ideal if I could find someone who's done vanagon swaps before and understands the process. My van runs OK now and I'm willing to load it up with the parts and deliver it to somewhere in my region. I'm in the SF bay area and I've looked as far as Idaho for someone to take on the project. Any recommendations for individuals or shops would be much appreciated. Reply to this or thread or PM me if interested. Thanks in advance.
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Old November 9th, 2018, 17:25   #2
eddieleephd
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First person that comes to mind is quite a bit closer to me than you.
If I were to want to do this myself, I might consider using a storage unit for the work. Pick the right one and have air conditioning.

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Old November 9th, 2018, 21:51   #3
Zeitgeist
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When you say 95% of the parts to do this, does this include a re-geared transmission? I'm in WA, and have experience with several of these swaps.
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Old November 10th, 2018, 06:41   #4
joelsolomonson
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Yes, I have had the trans rebuilt, re-geared and beefed up to accommodate the TDI. Iíve had the wiring harness modified by David Marshall, the head reconditioned and upgraded by Frank06 along with many other upgrades to make a sweet freeway flying machine.
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Old November 10th, 2018, 10:27   #5
joelsolomonson
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I should say that 95% of the parts means ALL the parts to do the conversion not just the motor parts. Parts I donít have are things like intercooler hoses and fuel line from filter to pump. Things that seem to be unique to each conversion but are easy to source.
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Old November 10th, 2018, 13:57   #6
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If the current engine is a gasser, then the fuel tank needs to be dropped and flushed/resealed or replaced. There are tons of little trip-ups that you don't think of unless you've done this kinda thing a few times...and even then. Each install is different. Mine sits at 15 degrees, but I assume you're planning on using the stock diesel kit, so it will sit at 50 degrees. Whomever you choose, be very clear about your expectations, your budget, and the timeline. I've seen lots of these kind of projects go haywire because the scope and scale of the adventure was never nailed down. It's always best to avoid bad juju from the outset.
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Old November 12th, 2018, 14:07   #7
Steve Addy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zeitgeist View Post
If the current engine is a gasser, then the fuel tank needs to be dropped and flushed/resealed or replaced. There are tons of little trip-ups that you don't think of unless you've done this kinda thing a few times...and even then. Each install is different. Mine sits at 15 degrees, but I assume you're planning on using the stock diesel kit, so it will sit at 50 degrees. Whomever you choose, be very clear about your expectations, your budget, and the timeline. I've seen lots of these kind of projects go haywire because the scope and scale of the adventure was never nailed down. It's always best to avoid bad juju from the outset.
Ditto everything you've said, and not just for Vanagon projects but anything that pushes the limit of what people can accommodate for time or money is often abandoned because there's little follow-through.

Just take a look at Vortex at all the half-finished projects up for sale.

Many people either don't understand the complexity of what they're getting involved in or they don't have the tenacity to see it through. Or the final killer is they don't have the $$ to make the jump to completion. Often the $$ is due to overspending on non-essential project stuff vs spending on the bare essentials.

Good luck finding someone to put this one together, it's a bit of a challenge and pretty challenging.

Steve
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