Ark's City Goblin (2007 2.0L LSJ donor)

Desert Sasqwatch

Well-Known Member
Ark, if you can borrow an inspection camera do it or maybe see if O'Reilly's or Autozone has one they can loan to you. Don't spend money on the camera (unless you really, really want one) and save your pennies, you are going to need them on this one. Broken lifters are an indication the inside of the cylinder is going to be armaggedon with bent/broken valves and likely gouges/holes in the tops of pistons. Someone did something bad to this engine and it may not be salvageable. As Ross stated, if you can save the block and crank from the engine internals it will be a miracle. Sorry you had this happen. I'm sure those of us in the Goblin family will do what we can to help, but this may end up being a search for another engine. :(
 

Ark :D

Well-Known Member
Thank you for the posts. I don't know where I'm going from here. I'll clear some space and start tearing the engine apart soon, but this is quite demoralizing and teaches me a hard lesson that others told me before I started: "Buy a donor that runs". That's what I get for not listening.
 

Ross

Well-Known Member
I bought a donor that didn't run... because you still get all the Cobalt parts you need. An engine can be sourced from other cars.
You still have the subframe, transmission, wheel hubs, electrical harness, suspension parts, etc, all from a Cobalt.
Skip the inspection camera, just pull the head off. It won't take long, then you can see if it is salvageable.
 

Ark :D

Well-Known Member
On a more positive note, I've had huge success this past week, selling off the other donor parts. That's great!.... perhaps it'll help fund a new donor. =(
 

Torchandregdoc

Active Member
I'm with Ross, pull the head. As much as you have going on in there, a couple more gaskets isn't going to matter. You'll want to rebuild that head anyway.

Chin up. I've been there. Lots of us have been right where you're at. It's still do able. Not what you wanted, but do able. It is a bummer from the finance stand point, but after the heads off you'll know what you have and you can start to make the decisions. You can get used motors pretty darn cheap if you want to go that route, and if not, you can find some really good builds for around 2k.or you can build it yourself.

Pull that head. Show us some pics.
 

Ark :D

Well-Known Member
I couldn't leave it alone. After I simmered down a little bit, I put in some time to get to the bottom of things.

I didn't yet pull the head (not enough time left today), and I may not need to. After a thorough examination of everything under the valve cover, I noticed one of the "nipples" that serves as a mounting point for one of the destroyed/missing rockers is broken off. Being that that is part of the head, I am looking at buying a head in addition to anything else that might be damaged further in.

I couldn't get it out of my mind that the timing chain seemed loose. So, I took the timing cover off and was pretty much stunned at what I found.

timing_damage1.jpg


Yes indeed, that IS one of the timing chain guides, broken into multiple pieces and just laying about inside the cover. Also another one of the missing rockers.

timing_damage2.jpg


A few of the bolts under the timing cover.

timing_damage3.jpg


I cannot believe that the timing chain is fully intact. There also does not appear to be any damage to the engine itself, at least not under the timing cover...

None of that may matter though. I have to, at minimum, buy a new head. I'll still take the head off to survey the damage, but this is already looking like another donor is necessary.
 

Motoracer110

Well-Known Member
Dang sorry to hear the bad news on the engine. I had a similar thing happen to me I bought a running donor well when I got it the car was running on 3 cylinders upon further inspection I had a cracked cylinder so the engine was toast. I bought a new crate motor on eBay great price
 

JeffsGoblin

Well-Known Member
That's more than I spent on my whole donor car! =D
Yeah, me too! A crate engine may be the better way to go as motoracer mentioned. Try Jeff Nelson Reiland on facebook. He's sold a lot of them. He's in Pittsburgh, PA. I've purchased a few things from him. He also sells on ebay. He has a running LSJ G85 for sale now for $3,200. He is a great guy and knows his ecotecs!
 
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Ark :D

Well-Known Member
I might have a replacement LSJ lined up. Someone has one listed on FB Marketplace, 45 minutes from me. He's being weird about it though, so I don't know if it'll pan out.

The ECM is VIN-matched, I know that ... but I guess my question is, what is it VIN-matched to? The engine? BCM? He doesn't want to give me the ECM with the replacement motor (or I should say, he wants to charge me a bunch for it).
 

Ark :D

Well-Known Member
Still trying to line up this replacement 2.0L SS engine, but I've gotten no response from the owner in the last 24 hours and I haven't had time to pull the transmission on mine to check for damage.

So in the meantime, I am looking at more donors. I've located a 2009 Pontiac G5 2.2L 5-speed not far from me, with only 38k miles on it and a good working drivetrain. The owner humored me by sending me a video of it running, which was nice. The exterior of the car is demolished though, looks like it was rolled. Maybe the trunk lid is salvageable, and the seats.

Decisions, decisions... I want to stick with a SS/SC or SS/TC, but I can't burn much more money hunting a donor; wife will kill me!
 

JeffsGoblin

Well-Known Member
As suggested above, you might want to try Jeff Nelson Reiland and send him a PM via FaceBook Messenger. Just ask him what LSJ heads, or full engines he has laying around. I bought a rebuilt polished / ported supercharger from him last month (pictures coming soon on my build thread). He specializes in the Ecotec, especially the LSJ! He has superchargers all over his garage... more than 30 of'm! He rebuilds and ports them for a LS4 throttle body and sells them in the USA and overseas.
 

Ark :D

Well-Known Member
GETTING TO THE BOTTOM OF THINGS!

Hopefully before the week is out, I'll have some idea where this project is headed. I had intended to put down a deposit on stage 1 within the next couple weeks, but that's looking like it'll need to be delayed.

I still didn't have time to remove the cylinder head because I work an 8-5 Mon-Fri and have a wife and kid, but I did do a little further inspection tonight. If I just need a head and rockers, then this project is still doable ... but I wanted to get a look at the cams.

First of all, all the damage is on the intake side. The exhaust side seems perfectly fine. Attached are some shots of the intake cam.

On the first image, I noticed the intake cam has oil around the inside of where the mounting clamps were before I removed them. The exhaust side does not. Is that an issue?

For the rest, I noticed the intake cam has some discoloration in some spots (I tried to capture them in pics as best I could) and in some spots, a few small nicks/grooves. Does that necessitate a new cam? I believe it does, but someone here will be able to tell me I think.

Basically at this point, I am considering two directions:
1) Replace parts on the current engine. This is only an option if ALL I NEED are a cylinder head and rockers.
2) Pursue a new donor. I've seen a couple that might be good targets but none of them are SS's.

Thoughts on the cam? Thank you guys!
 

Attachments

Ross

Well-Known Member
With luck, the pistons and head survived. You would need valves, rockers, cams, timing chain set, gaskets, etc.
With less luck, you could do a performance rebuild, forged pistons, connecting rods, head, etc.
 

Desert Sasqwatch

Well-Known Member
The cam is gouged and the cam bearing journal is scorched, its a goner.
The next thing that need to be looked at is the lifter bores to see if they are damaged. If they are, the head may not be reusable unless the lifter bore can be sleeved.
 

Ark :D

Well-Known Member
I'm not in it for all that. I'd sell the motor to a rebuilder before I get that far in. I'm adventurous enough to tackle a donor strip and Goblin build, but not an engine rebuild. :(

@Desert Sasqwatch I already know the head is toast, one of the "nipples" that the rockers sit on is busted off.
 
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