1991 B3 Passat Wagon AHU Syncro Swap

AKAvant

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2004 Audi A4 Avant 1.9TDI Quattro, 2002 VW California, 1998 Jetta TDI (Sold 6/16), 1997 B4 Passat TDI, 1993 Eurovan Weekender 1Z m-TDI conversion (Sold 5/12), 1992 AHU powered B3 Syncro Wagon
So I’ve started this thread before on a few different forums but after a longer hiatus I’ve begun working on the car again and decided to commit to one thread on this forum only. This decision is based mainly on the depth and quality of the information that this forum provides.
I’ll be summing up over a year of work so I apologize if the content is a little thin describing event up until now. I recently dove fully back into the project and detailed updates will follow these first posts.

So the back story….in August of 2010 I found a 1991 B3 Passat Wagon with the 16v engine and the 096 auto transmission which I purchased for $300 and towed home. Exterior and interior were in pretty good shape with almost zero rust. She needed a new water pump, muffler and various other maintenance items but once tuned up she was my main transportation for 7 Alaskan winter months. 28mpg on the highway with a 20yr auto impressed me. That little 16v was actually a really impressive motor.

A winter drive up to Talkeetna, AK with a great view of Denali.


A few weeks later a friend of mine finally decided to sell his AHU (k24 turbo) powered1992 B3 Passat Wagon Syncro. It had spent most of its life in Canada and was rusted through and through. It had also been recently tagged by an F150 on the left rear quarter panel, so it was a good donor canidate. When I took possession it was missing a rear brake so I was never able to drive it. The swap wasn’t the prettiest, with part of the original B3 harness spliced into the AHU (Jetta) harness with not all TDI parts used. The original B3 pedal cluster was customized to accommodate the potentiometer and the cruise control never worked. So I have a lot of sleuthing in the electronics still to do along with a million other things.

Towing the donor Passat home. She looks good in the picture but don’t be fooled, she’s a rotten tart.


Here is the thread I had begun on the ‘tex
http://forums.vwvortex.com/showthread.php?5017953-Finally-got-a-B3-Wagon

So here’s the donor finally in the garage and getting torn into.




Once those last pictures were taken I basically was unable to touch the Passat project for 8 months. Thanks mainly to working in the Alaska Range for 2 months and then a town 120miles south of my home for 3 months.
Swapping a used block into a ’98 Jetta with a blown motor and saving it from the junkyard slowed me down too. But that thing is blast to drive now and is my new winter car.




Finishing up a 1Z swap into a 1993 Eurovan Weekender burned some time too. I used an M-TDI pump from the European LT van since the previous owner hadn’t started the swap with the correct wiring to make it a TDI. But damn that pump with the stock injectors moves the van more than adequately. And we recorded 38mpg on the highway after I installed the .681 5th gear.

 
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AKAvant

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So finally it was time to focus on the Passat swap again.



A very rusty Syncro system.




It was almost impossible to separate the driveshaft from the VC and I ended up chipping part of the VC getting it off. God I hate salt and rust.



Here is the rear beam that the syncro rear subframe hangs from. Welding in its mount points into the non-syncro Passat will be the most major work needed in the swap. The front mount points of the syncro rear subframe are the same as the non-syncro rear axle.



All the rear syncro subframe parts and trailer hitch at the powder-coater’s awaiting a new life without rust.
 
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AKAvant

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* The 1991 16v auto Passat Wagon on jack stands ready for its teardown.



16v/auto combo pulled and broken apart. The 16v will be reborn in a friend's mkII racecar.





Here is the heart: a brand new AHU/1Z longblock that I was able to find at a not-unreasonable price. It’ll be nice to start with a clean slate. I have a K24 turbo setup for it at the moment so that’ll probably be what I go with. But I’ll see what happens…..



Here is another important part. After doing the math for a center-driveshaft rebuild I realized it wasn’t much more expensive to get a new driveshaft directly from Germany. I tried sourcing a used one through ebay.de and other euro sites but didn't have any luck or responses. The driveshaft that came with the car was beyond saving. So one day this big box showed up.


Inside was a brand new factory-balanced driveshaft. Apparantly VW Germany only had 4 left. Now they have 3. Can’t wait to install it.


So that’s most of my progress up until today. At the moment I'm stripping down the underside of the '91 Passat and on Saturday the welding for the Syncro attachments begins. I’ll be posting updates and LOTS of questions as I proceed. Hope you enjoy it!
 

AKAvant

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Pure Awesome! What are you going to do with the Peppermills that were on the B3?
Not sure yet, they've grown on me and might be my winter rims. I have 15" RML Snowflakes for the summer. But we'll see. They might be for sale soon.
 

AKAvant

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Update from yesterday, 12/16/11.
Removed the fuel tank and rear suspension from the 16v Passat. Its amazing how much dirt was cemented around the filler neck. No less than 5lbs!

There is still some metal that has to be removed but then the tank will fit perfectly.


The old rear end. Luckily the rear brakes on both the Passat's are Girling 38's and the dust shields from the 2wd rear brakes should fit the syncro rear brake setup. The original syncro dust shields pretty much just fell away when I removed them, gotta love rust:/
 
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AKAvant

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Here are the mount points for the rear syncro "beam" that the rear diff hangs off. I'm planning on cutting these mount points off the donor car and then re-welding them onto the '91 Passat. Alot of measuring has been occuring. "Measure 20 times, cut once." Hopefully.....

Driver's side mount point.


Passenger side mount point/bracket.
 

AKAvant

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All syncro mounts are now re-welded onto the '91. It only took 16hrs of prep and welding:/ I'll post pics tomorrow.
 

mogly

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Glad to see my old Syncro living on, at least in parts! Cool it's living up in Alaska, it's been years since I was last there.
 

AKAvant

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So on Saturday the welding began. My friend brought over his welder and things got going.
Beer helps any car project.


In terms of "build projects" I guess I sorta cheated since I had a donor car that I used as a template to get exact measurements off:) But it sure was nice to be able to double and triple check everything before cutting and welding. The donor also provided every syncro specific mount.


Once we cut into the mount location for the driver's side of the rear beam we saw that a plate with studs was resting on the rail. It came out relatively easily and provided a great piece to reweld into the build car.

I went over to the '91 Passat and cleaned off the same area and discovered that they DID make syncro's in '91. There were plugs in the rail for where the mounting bolts went through into the mounting plate.


All the other plates and brackets were removed successfully. We just cut out metal around the pieces we wanted and then drilled out the spot welds.


The passenger side bracket for the rear beam even had a parts # on it.


It was also necessary to cut away the metal on the passenger side where one of the fuel straps mounted.


Here is the inside of the driver's side rail where the rear beam will mount.


Plate installed.

 
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AKAvant

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Access hole sealed up.


Passenger side bracket for the beam getting welded.




Rear fuel tank strap mount points finished.


Center driveshaft hangers and one exhaust hanger mount completed.



Fixed a slight rust hole in the floorboards.
 

AKAvant

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So now I have to clean, primer, seal and undercoat all the welds. I was planning on using POR-15 and then a high quality paint before using the undercoating.
Anyone have some good tips to ensure nothing rusts?
Thanks!
 

G60ING

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No TDIs Currently, I have an R36 Corrado. I've had an ALH Corrado swap, AHU Corrado swap and 2003 TDI Jetta
Rust-Oleum is a heavy duty paint but Por-15's engine block paint is pretty darn robust too. I had a small fire on one of my old G60 motors and the POR15 engine block paint only suffered minor discoloration.
 

GTiTDi

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'91 GTI CJAA swap,'02 Jetta wagon ALH swap, '03 GTI 1.8T rally car, '03 Sprinter 3500
So now I have to clean, primer, seal and undercoat all the welds. I was planning on using POR-15 and then a high quality paint before using the undercoating.
Anyone have some good tips to ensure nothing rusts?
Thanks!
You already have the right idea, just make sure you allow ample time for each step of sealing/painting to dry...also its good to use weld-through primer on areas that are inaccessible once they are welded closed. If you didn't don't sweat it just get some rust preventative coating like Wax-Oyl or any other tacky waxy sealer and spray it around the inside.
 

queek

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Wow nice work! This brings back not so distant memories! You have a nice work space! That new drive shaft is syncro-porn! :) If you still have the donor car you'll want to grab the fuel tank vent hose pass-through or fabricate your own otherwise you'll get a very unpleasant surprise when you go to fill it up! You saved yourself a lot of head ache by swapping out the syncro K-member along with everything else - now you can use the syncro pass side motor mount. The K-member on the VR6 is different.

You're doing great!
 

AKAvant

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So finally another update. Things have been moving forward over the last month. The shell was stripped down and sent to the body shop for a full re-spray along with some minor bodywork.




 

AKAvant

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2004 Audi A4 Avant 1.9TDI Quattro, 2002 VW California, 1998 Jetta TDI (Sold 6/16), 1997 B4 Passat TDI, 1993 Eurovan Weekender 1Z m-TDI conversion (Sold 5/12), 1992 AHU powered B3 Syncro Wagon
I now have 2.5 interiors that I'm trying to make into one good set. One is a gray/blue cloth interior with manual windows, the next one is a tan Canadian cloth interior with power windows and the last one is a black leather sedan interior minus the carpet. I'm thinking a black leather interior with tan accents for the final setup.
Anyone found a good way to spray paint/dye an interior black?
 

AKAvant

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Next is getting the turbo ready. It has zero shaft play and didn't seem to have any blowby so I'm going to use it as is with 764 injectors and a Malone tune.
 

AKAvant

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I'm rebuilding all the brakes and have a Girling 60 (dual piston) setup that I'm thinking of using. Is it worth it? Do I need a 25-26mm master to get any benefit?
 

G60ING

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No TDIs Currently, I have an R36 Corrado. I've had an ALH Corrado swap, AHU Corrado swap and 2003 TDI Jetta
I hear the calipers are worth it but since they are soo much heavier I chose to go with 11.3 brakes and call it a day. From what I've read the audi calipers will work with the 22mm but the 24mm or 25mm will be worth the investment.

Is that an AZZ Turbo?
 

AKAvant

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2004 Audi A4 Avant 1.9TDI Quattro, 2002 VW California, 1998 Jetta TDI (Sold 6/16), 1997 B4 Passat TDI, 1993 Eurovan Weekender 1Z m-TDI conversion (Sold 5/12), 1992 AHU powered B3 Syncro Wagon
I hear the calipers are worth it but since they are soo much heavier I chose to go with 11.3 brakes and call it a day. From what I've read the audi calipers will work with the 22mm but the 24mm or 25mm will be worth the investment.

Is that an AZZ Turbo?
I think the AAZ's used a K14. This one I think came off a 1.6TD.

I was going to use the dual calipers with the 11" rotors from the G60's (Girling 54's. From the research I've done they should bolt right up. But yeah, the weight is worrying me. I have a set of the G60 brakes, would these be preferable?
 

G60ING

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No TDIs Currently, I have an R36 Corrado. I've had an ALH Corrado swap, AHU Corrado swap and 2003 TDI Jetta
I've had a couple pairs of the audi Girling 60 dual piston calipers that I rebuilt and sold. The rebuild kits are CHEAP. The weight of the audi calipers is double that of the stock corrado G60 calipers. Each time I had them, the debate of whether I should run them or sell them has come up. The arguments:

  1. They are heavy calipers
  2. I would have to buy $50-$80 brake pads to test them.
  3. The calipers/pads ride on the edge of the 11" rotor because they really need an 11.1" rotor.
  4. Another thought that always runs through my mind is that lots of people run them and love them. Is this because they are sheep or because they have driven other brakes and have come back to them and have appreciation for them?
Each time I have chosen to sell them instead of running them.

I do know that I LOVE my 11.3" brake setup VERY much. If I wanted to upgrade to Wilwood or Porsche calipers the only things that I feel would happen is: the wheels would lock up easier (requiring me to install ABS), lose weight both unsprung and sprung (in my wallet). My combo is very affordable to buy parts for since the pads are used on mk3/mk4/b4/b5 and the mk4 GTI 11.3" rotors are available by dozens of different companies and at all ends of the price spectrum. Another cool part about 11.3" is that you can then upgrade to 12.3" by changing the carriers and rotors for under $300. I don't plan on doing this upgrade because I already stop VERY well and the extra braking isn't needed for the street on my car. If I start going to the track and have brake fade then I might consider the 12.3" upgrade. Upgrading to 11.3 is not a slam dunk for 4x100

Sorry for all that but you caught me in a writing mood.

I've heard that one of two of the idi turbos were pretty good. I even considered it for a while. I heard they were a performance upgrade for the ahu but they will be operating outside their optimum performance range.
 

AKAvant

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Updates, the car came back from the body shop last Wednesday and the drivetrain is going in today.



I'll post more pics/info when I have time. I have to finish the car by Friday!
 

AKAvant

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Could anyone tell me the oil quantity needed in the rear diff, angle drive and transmission for this syncro setup?
 

G60ING

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No TDIs Currently, I have an R36 Corrado. I've had an ALH Corrado swap, AHU Corrado swap and 2003 TDI Jetta
Nice progress!!! When you grab pics lets see some of the jeep cherokee(???) it looks like a cool project too.
 

mech644

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Cherokee? Your referring to the freshly painted truck next to the engine correct? With those swing open "barn doors" on the back I'm thinking International TravelAll or a Suburban.
 

AKAvant

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It's a 1971 Suburban "Three door".

Anyone have a clue how much oil the tranny takes on a syncro? I take it the angle drive is fed from the transmission?
 

AKAvant

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Engine is together and mated to the transmission/angle drive. I got delayed installing it while messing with the clutch/brake booster assembly. This thing used to be an auto...
Windage tray.


Shiney new internals on the NOS 02C with a 3.156 R&P.


Everything together.
 
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