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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 December 4th, 2016, 11:15   #1
specialed1995
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Default Another Saturn TDI Conversion

Hello Everyone

I am following in user CFM's footsteps and working on building my own Saturn TDI conversion like the one found here: http://forums.tdiclub.com/showthread.php?t=193909 and will require the help of some more experienced people that are on this site. I have been carefully studying CFM's conversion, making plans and trying to get as much as possible figured out for over a year now, and also I've been purchasing all the parts I will need slowly along the way. I've already good a good bit of the parts I will need, minus the major parts like the engine, transmission and the car that it will eventually go in, but I've tried my best to get all the little parts that make this conversion possible.

I plan on emulating CFM's design in most ways, but I've made little changes here and there that I would like to run by you guys on here and see what your thoughts are.
For instance, I plan on using the MK4 pedal assembly because it would be much easier to fabricate a bracket that would bolt to the Saturn firewall, and from doing some googling I've found conversion guides that say its possible. I also plan on using an MK4 shifter assembly and was wondering if that will work with the AHU transmission. I will be posting more on this thread in the coming days of all the plans I have written out so far, such as the wiring diagram, a list of all the parts I've got so far, and other things I've calculated since I became interested in doing this conversion.

The reason I'm doing this is twofold: I want to replicate the fuel economy results obtained by CFM because I'm cheap, and I love the Saturn S-Series and plan on driving them for as long as I can. Also, just the engineering challenge of putting this type of thing together and making it all work is exciting for me, especially since this has only been done one other time. Thanks for all the help in advance.

Last edited by specialed1995; December 4th, 2016 at 11:42.
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Old December 4th, 2016, 12:15   #2
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Here's a list of all the parts I've got so far:

1. Saturn CV Axles
2. 2 Passenger side VW CV Axles
3. Machined axle adapters
4. MK4 gas pedal assembly with connector
5. MK3 gas pedal connector
6. MK4 shifter assembly with cables
7. MK3 fuel filter with check valve
8. Saturn Fuel Pump/Sending Unit converted to lift pump
9. Saturn Clutch Master and Slave Cylinder
10. Braided Steel flex hose for clutch
11. Saturn engine cradle
12. Stant 13519 In Hose Thermostat

I still have to find a lot of the major parts like the AHU drivetrain (any ideas?), wiring harness, and a Saturn to put it all in, but I planned on waiting until I have all the little parts before I get the bigger parts, that way once I do, everything will be ready to starting putting together.

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Old December 4th, 2016, 12:18   #3
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Yes, the MK4 shifter box and cables will work with the AHU transmission BUT YOU MUST also change to a MK4 shift tower assembly and weight, the vertical shaft that rotates and moves the shift forks. May also need the aluminum shift tower guide from bottom of trans.
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Old December 4th, 2016, 12:25   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by algirdas View Post
Yes, the MK4 shifter box and cables will work with the AHU transmission BUT YOU MUST also change to a MK4 shift tower assembly and weight, the vertical shaft that rotates and moves the shift forks. May also need the aluminum shift tower guide from bottom of trans.
Thank you for that information. I'll see if I can find one somewhere online.
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Old December 4th, 2016, 12:32   #5
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I also have another question about interchangeability. The MK4 pedal assembly looks like this:

And the MK3 style pedal looks like this:


(I know this pedal is not from an MK3, just showing it for an example)

I have both of these pedal assemblies and took the side cover off and everything but the circuit board looked exactly the same, so I switched the diesel one for the gas one so I could have the regular looking gas pedal instead of a plastic one. Just wondering if this will not work or create any problems or if it will be fine?
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Old December 4th, 2016, 13:31   #6
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I have been taking measurements off my Saturn engine cradle and comparing them to the pictures off CFM's thread and have come to some conclusions, as he did not give dimensions of anything on his thread.


From what I can tell the added crossmember in this picture is approximately 30 inches long and made from 2.5 square steel tubing 3/16 inch thick. I'm sure the bolt holes won't have to be exactly the same so I'll have to wait until I get the engine in the vehicle and mark where everything needs to be before I weld everything up but I can at least purchase the metal need to do this.

I can also tell from this picture that some supporting sheet metal was welded underneath the crossmember for reinforcement. The factory thickness of the metal was 0.070 inches so I'll purchase some 0.120 inch thick steel sheet and cut to the size and shape of the saturn engine cradle and weld it on underneath before I put the crossmember and sway bar brackets back on.

I am still trying to figure out the dimensions of the custom engine mounts show below:




I have a couple other pictures that I will link as soon as I figure out how to post them.
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Old December 5th, 2016, 06:44   #7
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My engine came with a MK3 pedal assembly and I used a MK4 pedal because it worked with my swap.
I know the newer pedal will work, I just dont remember if I had to change the wiring or if it just plugged in.
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Old December 5th, 2016, 15:38   #8
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I made another major step in this conversion today by purchasing the engine that will ultimately go in the car. I found an AHU engine complete with wiring harness, ECU, manifolds, alternator and starter. I've been looking for quite a while and finally found one that was reasonable.

Last edited by specialed1995; December 6th, 2016 at 15:11.
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Old December 5th, 2016, 16:14   #9
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AHU's were found in MKIII Jetta's
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Old December 5th, 2016, 16:19   #10
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So this engine has to be from an MKIII Jetta then? They never used them in anything else?
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Old December 5th, 2016, 16:25   #11
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That engine looks like an AVF a longitudinally mounted design - not typically found in North America - where did you find it?

The engine code will be stamped in the block just above the oil filter housing.
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Old December 5th, 2016, 16:34   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Windex View Post
That engine looks like an AVF a longitudinally mounted design - not typically found in North America - where did you find it?

The engine code will be stamped in the block just above the oil filter housing.

I found it on an ebay listing. Are there any major differences between an AVF and an AHU?
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Old December 5th, 2016, 17:18   #13
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The block and head are very similar, but the mounting is going to be wrong - that engine is designed in a lengthwise installation, and has mount brackets spaced evenly on either side.

A regular AHU would have a mount bracket on the passenger side rear of the engine, and the center of the front. The remaining mount attaches on the rear drivers side on the transmission, giving you three triangulated mounts.

If you have the engine, harness and ECU for that engine, I would sell it and get a real AHU that would be much better suited to an SL2's engine bay.

Alternately get an ALH - the pendulum mounting system is more similar to the pendulum mounts of all but a 1991 Saturn.

<- Source, Saturn Saab Isuzu technician from 1992 to 2002
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Old December 5th, 2016, 18:08   #14
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I will take pictures of the engine when it arrives and post it on here to show everyone what I have to work with so far.
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Old December 5th, 2016, 18:18   #15
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I found an Auction with those exact same pictures for $1500. Please tell me you did not buy that for your Saturn (the auction I found has not ended).

You can get an AHU and harness and transmission for far less than $1500.
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