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Thread: A twist on Previa engine removal

  1. #21
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    Re: A twist on Previa engine removal

    Quote Originally Posted by timsrv View Post


    If you don't have a big jack, here's an alternate way to lift

    That is brilliant!

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    Thumbs up Re: A twist on Previa engine removal

    Quote Originally Posted by timsrv View Post
    I had my jack stands on the tallest setting (30"). Of course if you do that you'll need a way to get the van that high. Depending on your equipment this can be a bit risky. pdgizwiz's way would be safer. Tim


    Thanks!
    ill back up the stands with blocks and house jacks for sure. I've got a neighbor with a tranny jack I can use as well. I'm looking forward to turning this baby over once it's in.

    Donny

  3. #23
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    Re: A twist on Previa engine removal

    Quote Originally Posted by pdgizwiz View Post
    Of course you do!

    I got it the JDM engine from Foreign Engines in Lynnwood. They're just a few miles from me and delivered it to my door for free. It came to $874, with tax.
    There's a lot to swap from the two. The manifolds are different, so it's essentially a long block. I plan to change out the front and rear seal and several hoses.
    The engine in the van was low in compression, but still ran OK. I'm going to tear it down for a post-mortem, and consider rebuilding it, because, after all, I'm pretty sure there are other Previas in my future!
    Hey...fabulous post! This trick/procedure helped me immensely! The only thing I did differently was use a pair of ratcheting cargo/tiedown straps instead which made for a little better micro-adjusting. I also had to take the manual shifter out from between the front seats.

    I have a 92 Altrac with 5 speed manual and developed a cracked head complete with blowing white smoke. I ignorantly followed the Haynes shop manual in my attempt to remove the head hoping it would be a relatively simple procedure only to have almost completely disassembled the entire engine. I was also hoping it was just a cracked head casket.....but NO! After learning there was a major short cut to removing the head I decided I was only a few bolts away from just rebuilding the engine. I have a few questions if you don't mind

    First, do you have any pix or other info as to your JDM reinstall utilizing the scissors lift, etc? I'm guessing it's better to reattach the tranny and transfer case outside the vehicle rather than after the engine is reinstalled? Did you eventually rebuild the engine you replaced with the JDM motor? If so, what tech data did you all use? Do you know of any u-tube or similar videos pertaining to rebuilding this particular engine? What do you feel is the best shop manual for rebuilding such as the official Toyota or Chiltons manuals? Or maybe other possible references with tips?

    If you can share any other advise it would be greatly appreciated! Thanx a million and happy Previa motoring!

    John in the Rockies

  4. #24
    Van Enthusiast pdgizwiz's Avatar
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    Re: A twist on Previa engine removal

    John in the Rockies
    I'm glad that my post helped you out!
    I've done several swaps at this point and yes, I rebuilt the engine I removed from the van that got the JDM engine. The only manual I have is the Toyota service manual. I have had Chiltons and Haynes manuals for other cars and with the Toyota FSM I've never seen the need for another. The FSM isn't perfect - some details are glossed over and I've encountered a few outright errors, but overall, I find it indispensable.
    I've revised my removal replacement process since I wrote this post. For one thing, I built a simple 2x4 structure to set the lift table on.
    lift-supoort_Previa.jpg
    Basically it's three four-foot chunks of 2x4 that were laying around tied to each other with a pair of old door hinges. Blocking the ends up provides a stable platform for the lift to sit on.
    I have also tried pulling the transmission first before dropping the engine. I use a cheap and simple transmission jack I got from HF. The main advantage to this approach is that the engine has to be tilted back to remove/install it, and without the trans attached you don't need as much overall lift on the van itself.
    The "micro-adjust" feature you describe is critical, too! I admit I haven't mastered an approach to this that I like well enough to share, and have taken out more temperature sensors than I want to remember!
    I've rebuilt other engines, from air-cooled VWs to BMW, and at some level they're all the same. You need enough in the way of tools to assess wear, and you need to be able to source new parts to replace the worn-out ones. I farm out machine work to a competent auto machine shop - they have equipment I'll never have.
    The first engine Previa engine I went through wound up having a warped head. I swapped it with another, which otherwise only needed cleaning, facing, and new guide seals. All that I let the shop do.
    Of the three Previa engines I've had apart thus far, only one had enough cylinder wear to needed boring. The other two just needed a quick honing, new rings, and a thorough cleaning of the pistons. I think I described that in another post.
    As to the lower end, I have yet to find an un-usable crank or connecting rod. Every crank has measured within spec. I don't use bearing shells supplied in a set, but instead get OEM shells with codes to match what the engine was built with, using the codes marked on the rods and block as described in the FSM. This costs a fair amount more, and may be entirely unnecessary, but it gives me a warm fuzzy feeling.
    I also have yet to find a worn-out camshaft. Good thing, because I expect I'd need to find a used head to get a replacement economically. If the valves need to be ground, you must go through the shimming routine, whereas otherwise it's just a good idea.
    I have yet to come across any of the metal timing parts that are worn to the point of needing replacement. The plastic guides always do, though. The aftermarket guides I purchased off Ebay the first two times were fine, but the third time they were so wonky I ponied up and bought OEM. More money, more confidence.
    Last edited by pdgizwiz; 12-10-2015 at 05:08 PM.

  5. #25
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    Re: A twist on Previa engine removal

    Your method is really a clever way to do this. Much better than the scary looking balancing acts I've Seen others try. I intend to swap my engine when my financials are in better shape. I have been thinking about ways to do this job for a while now, and I have decided based my current tools I am going to go with the FSM method with a slight twist. Once the engine is ready to be dropped, I am going to lower the VAN to the tires, and place the jack, or whatever equipment I will have then, under the Motor. I will then lift the van until the engine can clear the van. I think this method will work best for me since I don't have to go through as much stress lowering the engine from a raised vehicle, but raise the van instead, which I have done plenty of times. I will take plenty of pictures and post here later.

  6. #26
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    Re: A twist on Previa engine removal

    EXCELLENT! Thanx for the info and tips.....I'm much more encouraged to take this rebuild project on by myself! Unfortunately I just recently had right shoulder cuff surgery from a skiing accident on Pike's Peak. So it'll be awhile before i can get to this project but in the meantime I'll be amassing all the parts, etc, et al, to include an official Toyota shop manual. It would be real nice if there was a U-tube vid or the like showing a step-by-step process...it would be like a paint by numbers picture. You get a nice looking pix by a non-artist Anyway, I guess I'll be shopping around online for a shop manual. I already got a rebuilt head from a place in Texas thru e-bay for a mere $297. including shipping. They wanted the cracked head back for parts I guess. I agree taking the block to a good local auto machine shop is a good call as I don't have all those precision tools either. Do you know of a great resource for a Toy shop manual? How about the timing chain and I think oil pump chain in the front end along with glide rails....should all those be replaced after 265K miles do you think?

    It's great there's people like you that are out there to help and willing to do so! Next time you're in the Colo Spgs/Pike's Peak area I'll take you out for a steak dinner.

    John in the Rockies

  7. #27
    Van Enthusiast pdgizwiz's Avatar
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    Re: A twist on Previa engine removal

    John-
    Ebay's the place for your manual. Here's one.
    None of the metal timing parts or oil pump I've dissected have shown any significant wear. The manual describes how to evaluate the chain and sprockets. Replacing them with OEM parts 'just because' would be crazy expensive, and with no-name aftermarkets crazy risky. I just clean them up and put them back in the engine where they came from. I think the lubrication systems on these engines are bulletproof. But twenty years and a quarter-million miles take a toll on anything made of recycled dinosaurs. Seals, O-rings, etc., all get replaced. And clean, clean, clean.
    I drove up Pike's Peak once in my bug. I could hardly breathe up there but the bug did fine. I think I advanced the timing a bit part way up...
    VW-on-PikesPeak.jpg

  8. #28
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    Question Re: A twist on Previa engine removal

    Thank you so much pdgizwiz, and everyone else, for posting your project and progress. My '95 SC overheated one too many times and "blew" the head gasket. I had a JDM delivered yesterday from Lynnwood. Seems their prices have lowered; mine was delivered for like $745 after taxes. I haven't decided which method to take for removal yet. Van is in garage ready to be lifted and attacked. I figure I'll try and squeeze a camera in and the engine to take pics to refer back to as to where some of hoses, sensors, etc are attached. One question I still have after reading the thread is whether the USDM manifolds are going to work with the JDM? It seems they do after reading the entire thread. I'm also curious which Toyota manual is best to have on hand? TIA.

  9. #29
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    Re: A twist on Previa engine removal

    I just spent $700 on Toyota Previa parts myself. I am going to replace the old engine with a JDM. I will take pictures and report here in a month or two. I plan to begin the project after New Years.

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    Re: A twist on Previa engine removal

    Hey Tim. I'm getting ready to swap my engine out also. My question is, what did you wrap the straps around on the Previa? The frame rails are not an option since they are coated with rubberized coating. I am not sure what to wrap the ties downs around front and back. Thanks

  11. #31
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    Re: A twist on Previa engine removal

    Good question. Too many years ago for me to remember. I did the job and made the original write-up on TVP (now defunct) back in 2009, then copy/pasted it here in 2014. All I can tell you now is there wasn't any issues finding easy spots to hook these up to. If it had been a PITA I'm sure I would recall that. Good luck. Tim

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    Re: A twist on Previa engine removal

    I am about to replace the motor in my 1995 S/C Alltrac it has 250,000 and just blew the head gasket. I have a motor from a donor van sitting in my garage with 141,000 miles and it ran real well. I am dreading this job but was wondering if it would be smart to replace the head gasket on the donor motor before I put it in or just put it in an run it. I am a little nervous about pulling head off but also don't want to do two motor swaps if there is a good chance this one is gonna go out in next 50k or so. Motor hasn't been run in about two years but was fogged.

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    Re: A twist on Previa engine removal

    Updates?

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    Re: A twist on Previa engine removal

    Quote Originally Posted by Vanyz View Post
    Updates?
    Finished van on Saturday. Ended up pulling head and all other gaskets inc valve stem seals. Runs good was a lot easier then I expected. Most things are actually quite easy to get to. Am kinda bummed also put the low mileage tranny and transfer case in. When I drained transfer case two small BB's came out. No other metal shavings and no abnormal sounds so just gonna drive it. Also gonna save my other tcase

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