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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all,

thought it was about time I started some sort of a build thread as I'm always tinkering and just can't help myself(who can right?)

I have always been a dubber, first car was a MK1 Golf driver 1983 1.3. Loved that car with its ridiculous twin upswept DTM exhaust lol
Went down the company van route then until I bought my own 2k Caddy 1.9PD. Did a fair bit to that to smarten it up but sadly wrote it off and was lucky to walk away unscathed.
Fast forward 6 years and after much looking I finally pulled the trigger on a 2013 LWB Kombi bitdi Trendline, 107k miles, one company owner with full and comprehensive history
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These are the pics from the ad on auto trader. Looks mint right? I work abroad, so I had my flights home changed to Edinburgh, collected the van and drove it home thinking this bitdi is alright and I was smitten. I have always loved the transporters and was happy I finally had one....I had an Audi A6 estate and loved that c ar but it just was bot big enough for me and the family so naturally I had the perfect excuse to get my dream van....
we had a short trip away in it to Wales just me and the missus and the dogs and it was great. Few niggles but nothing major
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got it home and gave her some of my serious attention by giving her a wash. Snow foamed, clay barred, and soon realised she'd had a very bad spray job on the right side and tailgate(I did wonder why she had no badges etc in the ad pics)
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So I knew she needed a respray, this was added to the list.
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Then it all started to come undone....You guessed it, the BiTdi bit me in the ****. The van ran fine, but I always have my vehicles remapped and this was going to be no different. So she was dropped off at Darkside for EGR delete, dpf delete and remap. She failed the compression test miserably, down to 300psi on cylinder 1, 320 on 2, then 400 on 3+4.
So I called the garage back where I bought it, who said the warranty would cover it.
Rang the warranty company, they said no chance in as many words, so after a little bit of to-ing and fro-ing the garage agreed to pay for a replacement engine. This was done by Graham and his team at IVC Leeds who really are a fantastic set of lads. Turns out the piston rings had seized, it wasn't actually down to the famous egr breaking up
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Engines were on back order, dpf's were on back order so the van was forgot about while I retreated and licked my wounds and regretted selling my beloved A6. This was the first week of June.
I still kept buying cheeky bits and bobs though haha.
I had kind of decided when I got the van back I was going to sell it and buy a 140 but I have decided to keep Valerie now.Way I see it I now have a one owner van with a new engine so I will look after it my way and I know it will be right.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
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Its now the 26th August, and the new lump is in and rebuild underway. With the front end off I took this opportunity to change a few things and had some deliveries made to IVC. Under the bonnet I went with the Darkside front mount uprated intercooler, uprated hard pipework and silicone hoses, and the Darkside thermostatic oil cooler. I was made aware by Graham this would void the 2 year warranty from VW but I had a think about it and went with it anyway.
I also removed the dreadful standard candle stick headlights and went with a set of Transporter HQ V3's and also went with the bulb upgrades and I have to say they really are worth every penny. The difference is amazing and I also think they look the nuts as well, really smarten up the front end.
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Van was collected on the 27th September and runs a treat. I put on the dark sequential indicators, black rear VW badge, front splitter and also some 20x10 Rotiforms with some serious poke 😆
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Gloss black front grille too, really happy how it looks tbh. I like the less is more mantra. I always look back at it now when I park it up...Missus just rolls her eyes at me. She's jealous lol.
Ive got some stance+ coilers in the shed too to go on to get her down from the clouds.

I've also just treated myself to a new gearstick from Built By Basil, can't wait to get that on. All handmade and bespoke to your requests, can't recommend him enough.
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Valerie is now booked in at Pendle for the original work doing of the egr blanked, def delete and a rolling road remap. should see a healthy 200 bhp. Think that's enough in a van don't you?haha

Attention turning now to the inside and utilising the rear. Ive got all the sound deadening and insulation from dodo. It has been carpeted in the back but its all sagging and coming off, don't think its been insulated. im not going to camper it so needs to be some sort of day van set up. Days away with the kids, fish and Chips etc. I have been looking at diesel heaters, may get one. Naturally I only want to do the back once so I need to get everything together. I need some power in the back for the kids to charge things etc so going to have to look at a split charge system, I'd also like some rear speakers. I have seen some good work by Skipton Car Audio.

I am also going to take the wheels off and tidy up the callipers, they look shocking. thinking either red or yellow.

So there we go, that's me and mine. will update as I do things, sure it won't be long :cool:
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Whats the quality of that darkside cooler like ?
Seems good so far. The first one that turned up was dented, I emailed them straight away and they offered me some more goodies to keep it to which I declined and they swapped it straight away. The graphs on their website say that these have a better flow than the forge coolers. Darkside have also just tuned THQ'S flatbed, that has a forge cooler on it and rob says on there that the forge isn't as good as their own
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Great looking van and with new engine even better! That btdi pulls like a train.
Thanks mate. Yeah it sure does go. 4th gear is pretty good haha. Will be even better after being at Pendle too. Tbh im not really after big numbers, just a healthy engine with the poke when I want it. Its the T32 so could be quite the lump
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks for the feedback Tyson .

Liking them wheels :cool: look even better when its lowered .
Thanks mate. I like the wheels too but they don’t half stick out, I’ve already caught the passenger side
I still have the original 18’s that need refurbing with good tyres, they might be my winters and done different. May go for a colour


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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
9’s if I remember correctly. I bought the wheels in June, had them re done in this black with a silver fleck in them. They were originally diamond cut but they were peeling badly


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Great looking van you've got there with some nice toys thrown on (y)

Intercooler is on my list, must admit was going Forge but you're the second person who rates the Darkside one. :unsure:
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thanks mate
They’ve got some graphs up on Darkside sales page about the intercooler, compares them both on a dyno.
I don’t think they’d be able to do that if it wasn’t correct. Plus they’re from Yorkshire and we’re all as honest as a day is long darn ‘ere
I’ll post my results of the remap when it’s done but that’s not for another 3/4 weeks yet


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I've already been mapped by Revo, so the cooler will only add circa 10bhp and some more torque, not fussed about the numbers really, just anything to help the engine.
Certainly interested to see your results from before to after. My van was the eye watering 84bhp model which was quite the shock when driving round Wales and struggling to go up hills, running around 170bhp so was quite the jump in results 😁
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
That’s some difference isn’t it!
I’m not chasing big power or figures, let’s be honest 200 isn’t much anymore is it by todays standards, I’m the same as you I guess just want a healthy engine running as best as it can. Darkside say they’ve never seen a 180 make 180 standard so I guess I’ll only end up somewhere around the 180/190 mark


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That's a great looking van - and will look even better once she's down a little lower too. Really liking the intercooler mods too. I'd love to upgrade mine - one day maybe! 😁
Must be nice to have a fresh motor up front too so you don't have any engine / service history worries.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Thanks mate
It would be easier to sleep knowing it was still under warranty but I’ve voided that so if anything goes wrong with any of it now it’s out of my pocket
I guess I’ve got the best start you can get with a 2nd hand van. I’m very meticulous with my maintenance too so should be ok

I’m sure we’ve waved at each other on York road….I was coming out between Farmfoods and Aldi by cross gates


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That’s some difference isn’t it!
I’m not chasing big power or figures, let’s be honest 200 isn’t much anymore is it by todays standards, I’m the same as you I guess just want a healthy engine running as best as it can. Darkside say they’ve never seen a 180 make 180 standard so I guess I’ll only end up somewhere around the 180/190 mark


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Plenty of motors these days knocking on 200 and above but still puts a huge smile on my face when someone is up my barn doors thinking it's just a slow van, then with a quick gear change they become ever smaller in the rear view mirror 👋

I rarely actually do that, much more of a relaxed driving style since buying the van, just nice to not struggle on up hills.
 
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