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UncleP
Silverstone


Joined: 27 Feb 2019
Posts: 123



PostPosted: Fri Mar 01, 2019 3:27 pm    Post subject: Help me buy a (decent) 996 Reply with quote

Sorry for the click baity title. Following on from my intro thread here http://911uk.com/viewtopic.php?t=132572 I thought I’d start a fresh “new owner guidance” thread….. Cause you guys probably don’t get enough of them right?

So I test drove the car in question (2001 3.4 C4 manual 80k miles) and noted the following. Unfortunately the car was warm when I arrived as it had been moved from other premises about 5 miles away.

Postives
    No knocks, bangs or squeaks from suspension while driving
    All gears seemed to engage easily without noise or notchiness
    No knocks or slack in the steering
    Bodywork all looked straight. I expected to find signs of paint and I assume it must have had some
    No signs of rust around arches/sills
    Aircon blows cold
    No apparent leaks from radiators and ducts were clear of leaves
    Tyres have plenty of life left in them
    Everything electrical seemed to work
    Engine temp was steady throughout the drive
    Oil pressure sat between 1/2 at idle and up around 4/5 while driving ( read this was normal)


Negatives
    Driving at normal speed around town the car pulled slightly to the left
    The clutch biting point was high and the pedal relatively stiff (my other car has a very heavy clutch and it felt very similar)
    It was VERY loud (possibly a positive) The righthand silencer is a different design from the left which explains why they don’t align well
    There's a definite oil leak that looks like it's been there a while
    I was wrong about the brakes. They definitely haven’t been done recently and need doing
    The handbrake was useless even on a slight hill


This final point is my main concern but could be a matter of coincidence. I went round the car after test drive and noted a small puddle at the left exhaust. It could be coincidence as the car was washed prior to my arrival and was pulled up on a busy road. I probably shouldn’t say this but I did do a wee finger dip and lip taste and it was slightly oily and bitter, not sweet like coolant… could be that’s what all puddles taste like.

Anyway. I went in to speak to an indie on the way back to work and have booked it in for a PPI on Monday. Had a good chat with the mechanic and he’s said I’m more than welcome to go along and he’ll take me through the inspection.
 
  
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Robertb
Dijon


Joined: 01 Sep 2003
Posts: 7120
Location: South Oxfordshire

2002 Porsche 996 Carrera 4S

PostPosted: Fri Mar 01, 2019 3:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Handbrake sounds about right for a 996 of that vintage. They need a good pull. I usually leave my 4S in gear!

Brakes are not a big deal to change (in fact a nice DIY job if you are handy) but factor in the cost if not done.

Clutch... I may be wrong, but I think there is a wear indicator which your PPI should check or at least he will give a view based on experience.

Fluid... could be anything from condensation from the exhaust to soap residue from the wash-down coming out of a drain hole.

Pulling to the left... get a proper 4 wheel geo/alignment done as a matter of course to get the car working at its best.

Annoying about the exhaust, but not a dealbreaker.

Wait and see what your PPI comes back with.
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wasz
Sepang


Joined: 28 Dec 2012
Posts: 2958


1999 Porsche 996 Carrera 2

PostPosted: Fri Mar 01, 2019 4:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pulling to left may need a geo setup. The problem is if it needs more than simple tracking the eccentric adjuster bolts for camber seize up inside the alloy bush on the suspension arms. You need to cut the arms off and replace to be able to adjust. But if its never had arms all round it might need them anyway.

Clutch may need replacing. Mine was very stiff and I put up with it a long time before replacing, when I did it was much nicer to drive. Ideal opportunity to inspect the IMS bearing and reseal the cover which may or may not be your oil leak. If its never had a flywheel it might need one too.

If they've only replaced one exhaust box with a non standard one then the other won't be far off, and you would want to match it up. The OE exhaust rot on the lower seams from the inside out.

Oil leak - where? from engine gearbox join if its less than a drip then leave it until clutch time. Old engines weep oil.

Brakes are an easy job and not too expensive with OE textar pads and pagid discs.

Handbrake par for the course. You can rebuild and grease the pivots and fit new shoes which might make it better. Thats easy.


-----

That list is pretty typical and ideally if you are keeping the car a while just get it all done at once so you can enjoy the car. Its going to cost you a wedge at an indie, but careful parts sourcing (autodoc, cp4l etc) and using non specialist labour or DIY will bring it way down.


----

Check the brake lines over the gearbox and in front of steering rack. Check the steering rack hard lines.

Check for RUST under lower rear arch covers, see my threads linked below for what to expect.
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UncleP
Silverstone


Joined: 27 Feb 2019
Posts: 123



PostPosted: Fri Mar 01, 2019 4:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for taking the time to reply and also read what was a rather long post.

Strangely the OE looking box on the left didn't show signs of rot. I'm not really sure what's going on with the exhaust, I'll get a better idea when it's on the ramp. It didn't look like exhaust bolts had ever been done. I couldn't see the manifold bolts.

I went through all the receipts. Some properly scary bills in there. RMS was done previously a long time ago but it does look like the oil leak is coming from the engine/gearbox join area.

One of the bills showed coffin arms and some other bushes (can't remember detail) had been replaced in 2009. I know that's ages ago but the car has only done roughly 12k miles since then.

No documentation of a clutch replacement ever so I figure I'll need to get that done. I probably won't tackle that myself as I'd rather get a pro to check the IMS at the same time. I'm not bad on the spanners so will do things like brakes and suspension myself.

Thanks for pointing me towards those links wasz. Be interesting to see how this car is rust wise underneath. I found out today that the car is supplied with a heated cover which the last owner kept the car under in his garage the last 8 years and only drove during summer..... being in Glasgow that explains why it only managed 1k miles per year.
 
  
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UncleP
Silverstone


Joined: 27 Feb 2019
Posts: 123



PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 4:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Update on the inspection.

List of immediate jobs is as follows:
New brakes all round
New brake lines
Rear nearside exhaust Flexi blowing
ARB bushes cracked
Nearside AC condenser needs replacing
Oil leak (RMS)

Also noticed the rear offside wing has seen paint (slight over spray on seals). There is also slight bubbling just starting on the front edge of the wheel arch on this wing.

The garage was mobbed and didn't have time to do a borescope today but didn't take any money. Ill get one done if I decide to proceed. At the moment I'm undecided on next steps. Baring in mind this is one of the cheapest cars currently out there.
 
  
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PDCC4S
Newbie


Joined: 09 Oct 2017
Posts: 33



PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 4:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Evening

After reading your post in was wondering what kind of c4s your looking for colour combo, miles price etc.

Many thanks
 
  
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wasz
Sepang


Joined: 28 Dec 2012
Posts: 2958


1999 Porsche 996 Carrera 2

PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 4:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

UncleP wrote:
Baring in mind this is one of the cheapest cars currently out there.


Its 18 years old - that list is very short.

Good luck finding another with a shorter list!
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UncleP
Silverstone


Joined: 27 Feb 2019
Posts: 123



PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 4:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

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UncleP
Silverstone


Joined: 27 Feb 2019
Posts: 123



PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 4:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

wasz wrote:
UncleP wrote:
Baring in mind this is one of the cheapest cars currently out there.


Its 18 years old - that list is very short.

Good luck finding another with a shorter list!


I appreciate the reality check. Nothing on the list has me overly worried and while I have plenty of experience of extensive restoration work and maintenance on other vehicles the 996 is still new to me so appreciate the guidance of you more knowledgeable sorts.
 
  
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UncleP
Silverstone


Joined: 27 Feb 2019
Posts: 123



PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 5:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

PDCC4S wrote:
Evening

After reading your post in was wondering what kind of c4s your looking for colour combo, miles price etc.

Many thanks


Ideally i'm looking for a 996.1 C2 or C4 rather than a C4S.

Not massively fussed on exterior colour but prefer a black interior. Beggars can't be choosers.
 
  
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Glasgow 911SC
Newbie


Joined: 09 Jun 2002
Posts: 46
Location: Glasgow


PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 5:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey uncleP

Who ended up doing the PPI in the end? As you alluded to in the other thread, the owner of Deutschtek is the son of the owner of Scottish Motor Services. Whilst I've have only heard decent stuff about both, hopefully it was an independent garage that gave you the report.
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UncleP
Silverstone


Joined: 27 Feb 2019
Posts: 123



PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 6:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

P for Porsche in Clydebank. I’ve never used them before but a friend does rate their Audi variant of the brand.

Spautobahn were just too far, I would have liked to have used them but it would have meant a day off work. I decided against George Morrison.

I got an estimate for the work but I haven’t spoke to Scottish Motor Service about it yet. I’d be happy for them to get Deutschtek to do the work as i’m sure they’d get it done at family rates. I spoke to both SMS and DT about my reservations regarding the family tie prior to today. Both businesses have great reputations and i’ve used both before with no issues. DT are probably one of the best garages I’ve used actually.
 
  
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BillCoupe98
Newbie


Joined: 11 Dec 2016
Posts: 28
Location: South West


PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 7:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

the photos show a car that hasn,t had any money spent on preventative maintenance in quite some time

Both exhaust flexis are cracked, the discs are shot on the insides, corrosion on the suspension components and lack of any newish bolts show significant time and effort required even if you do the work yourself just to get the car running and driving as it was designed.

there are so many cars around that have had the work done already which would make much more sense
 
  
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deMort
Long Beach


Joined: 21 Mar 2015
Posts: 6987
Location: Brighton


PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 7:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

From the pictures ..

X2 silencers .

Front and rear discs and pads .

X4 coffin arms .. not urgent but they will be debonding .. not an MOT fail though .

Brake pipe o/s/f where it enters the car.

Front shocks .. hmm .. ok but dont look pleasent .. clean and protect .

Rear main / oil leaks .. looks ok .. old misting .. so im disagreeing with the garage there .. i dont see any fresh oil.

Probably wants a clutch .. biteing point high would certainly indicate to me it needs one let alone being a hard pedal .

Water from the exhaust .. pretty normal .. you would have taisted sulpher and a mixture of co2 / acid in it .. if it WAS coolant then the engine would no longer be running !

From the general corrosion then i hope the garage removed all the under trays as i suspect the brake pipes under the L shaped panel will also be heavily corroded .

All in all .. a fair bit of corrosion but fairly normal for a car that hasnt had any protective waxoil etc and is maybe slighlty under serviced .

It will need approx 5k of work there though .
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UncleP
Silverstone


Joined: 27 Feb 2019
Posts: 123



PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 7:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, I think the previous owners attitude towards maintenance is what's niggling me more than some rusty suspension components. Most of this stuff didn't just happen all of a sudden before/after trade in.
 
  
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UncleP
Silverstone


Joined: 27 Feb 2019
Posts: 123



PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 8:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

deMort wrote:
From the pictures ..

X2 silencers .

Front and rear discs and pads .

X4 coffin arms .. not urgent but they will be debonding .. not an MOT fail though .

Brake pipe o/s/f where it enters the car.

Front shocks .. hmm .. ok but dont look pleasent .. clean and protect .

Rear main / oil leaks .. looks ok .. old misting .. so im disagreeing with the garage there .. i dont see any fresh oil.

Probably wants a clutch .. biteing point high would certainly indicate to me it needs one let alone being a hard pedal .

Water from the exhaust .. pretty normal .. you would have taisted sulpher and a mixture of co2 / acid in it .. if it WAS coolant then the engine would no longer be running !

From the general corrosion then i hope the garage removed all the under trays as i suspect the brake pipes under the L shaped panel will also be heavily corroded .

All in all .. a fair bit of corrosion but fairly normal for a car that hasnt had any protective waxoil etc and is maybe slighlty under serviced .

It will need approx 5k of work there though .


Thanks.

The oil leak photo isn't great, I should have got a close up but wanted to give an idea of the area it was coming from. It's definitely a current oil leak as I took a drip of fresh wet oil on my finger.

The water from the exhaust must have been from washing or a coincidence of the weather. Dry day today and no water, oil smell or smoke from the exhaust (although admittedly it's not even attached). There was a slight ticking noise from the engine which I believe can be a sign of bore score if loud. Not sure if a slight tick is normal?
 
  
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deMort
Long Beach


Joined: 21 Mar 2015
Posts: 6987
Location: Brighton


PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 8:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you have a drip from the bell houseing then i would recomend getting the seals done .. if combineing with a clutch then its cheaper ... as you say the picture is a bit difficult to see .

A Tick is normally tappet based and not a problem as such ..

Bore score .. it would have to be pretty advanced to actually get a noise and even then you dont always .. this is more what i would expect from a 997 than a 996 ... ive seen very few 996 with actual bore score , talking fingers on one hand to be honest .. but im not Hartech !

Its more of a heavey note .. almost a slapping of the piston against the cylinder .. hard to desribe but you can " feel " its deep inside the engine .. a tappet to me at least always sounds like its from the outer parts of the engine ... which it is and it will be one sided .. either o/s or n/s .

Tinny noise .. outside and tappet .. deep knocking .. so more bass .. big end , bore , piston slap , small end etc etc .

my opinion of this car .. it needs to be cheap .. i see a fair bit of work ahead .. nothing terminal from what ive seen or read so far .. but the general condition makes me feel that you will have to spend a few bob to get it back upto par .
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wasz
Sepang


Joined: 28 Dec 2012
Posts: 2958


1999 Porsche 996 Carrera 2

PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 9:35 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Shocks have never been replaced. Will be OK i.e. not leak and probably pass a dyno test, but won't be 100%

Exhaust boxes are mis matched someones just done one side (!)

------


You say its cheap, it looks like a sub £12k car. You probably aren't going to find much better without spending more.

You either do bits and bobs constantly over the next few years, and drive the car but it won't be 100%.

Or bite the bullet and give it a refresh, as demort says you are going to need £5k+

Then it may well be better than cars at £17-18k only you can make the call.

I was where you are 5 years ago. I bought at the bottom of the market and I've done LOADS over time. My car was MOT'd and everything worked much like this car. I've spent £6k in parts alone. Car has been faultless* for a year now.





*Apart from leaking door membrane, key fob battery drain, rattling heat shields.... there is ALWAYS something on an old car.
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UncleP
Silverstone


Joined: 27 Feb 2019
Posts: 123



PostPosted: Mon Mar 04, 2019 9:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

wasz wrote:


I was where you are 5 years ago. I bought at the bottom of the market and I've done LOADS over time. My car was MOT'd and everything worked much like this car. I've spent £6k in parts alone. Car has been faultless* for a year now.

*Apart from leaking door membrane, key fob battery drain, rattling heat shields.... there is ALWAYS something on an old car.


Haha, I know that feeling. I currently run a 16 year old snotter as a daily and have another 29 year old car that likes to self destruct while sat in the garage.

I appreciate the honest appraisals and estimates on work and costs. Means I can make an informed decision.
 
  
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Griffter
Spa-Francorchamps


Joined: 22 May 2016
Posts: 335



PostPosted: Tue Mar 05, 2019 7:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A manual 996 is a £20k car. This one doesn’t seem to be the exception, or to be particularly cheap.
Take a step back and look at it. Do all the bits and pieces work? Do you like it? What’s the bodywork and interior like? The bits you’ll actually see and interact with. If you spend £18/19k in total on it will you be pleased with the result, or will you wish you’d held out for something else?
There are very few 996 bargains these days.
 
  
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