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Discussion Starter #1
I'm looking at having my head refreshed with new valve stem seals, new springs, gsc s1 cams, and whatever else might be required.

I'm having a tough time figuring out how much this should run in total. I figure about $1500 in parts alone so I'm thinking this could add up real quick, anyone have any figures I could use as an estimate?

I'm just wondering if I'm looking at $500 labor or $1500 labor as a rough estimate.
 

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Putting in seals, springs, hot tanked and surface should be right around $500, maybe a little less. You should probably just call a few local shops and get some quotes. If you need a valve job, well that can get spendy quick.
 

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Captain Hammer
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Carter-

At our shop, it would be $1250 to remove the head, replace the valve stem seals and relap the valves, installing the cam and setting tolerance as well as degreeing them once installed-

$500 labor is just under 6 hours to remove and reinstall the head as well as recondition everything, if someone is trying to do it at that cost, I'd expect substantial cut corners.
 

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adammackintosh.net
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it should be pretty cheap if you have the parts man.

first you really should remove the head from the car. then take it to the machine shop and have them take it apart and put it back together with new stem seals and then clearance the gsc s1's

you may opt away from that since it involves busting out the headgasket but when i bought my head off supraforums and had new VSS installed and re-clearance the cams it cost me literally $200 at the machine shop.

and a head gasket is what like $75. i wouldnt trust any shop around here to touch my car and if i did it wuold probably cost $100/hr and i gaurantee it would take them more than 2 hours.

then you can install some ARP studs too.

taking the head off is easy, ive done it 3 times. hardest part is fiddling with the timing and doing the cam caps and then tightening the cams down. the rest of it i could guide a 6 year old chimpanzee through over the phone.
just follow the TSRM and i promise you will be fine.

here are my accurate estimates:
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-parts: unknown
-labour at machine shop: $200
-headgasket $100
-ARP studs: $100
-assembly lube: $10
-probably new gaskets everywhere you see while taking apart: $100

all the more reason to go that route if you plan on going maximum safety with the interference cams.
-billet timing tensioner: $300
-timing belt $50
-oem tensioner and idler parts: $200max

new waterpump while everything is apart?
shit son i could go all day on the things you might wanna do while doing it. just kidding no i cant thats pretty much it. and make sure you get 2 new o-rings for the waterpump vertical neck connecting to waterneck.

alternate method:
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goto car shop and pull pants down: free
be anally raped by everyone at the shop with only your wallet as protection: complimentary

personally i recommend you get shimless buckets aswell but that will cause extra time waiting for your head to be done at the shop. you could do all this machine shop stuff yourself if you buy a couple tools to simply remove the springs.
then its just a matter of spending your free time and measuring stuff with feeler gauge ($5)

although i havent done that yet. you may need some kind of precision instrument to measure the lift at 0.500" or wherever people measure clearance at. i'd budget about $100 for that tool.
then you just put the cams in and see what the clearance is and do some grade 3 math to figure out what shims you need.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks Raven that's exactly what I was looking for, drive my car to a shop and drop it off, and pick it up with everything ready to go.

I haven't gotten any quotes so I'm literally shooting in the dark with my guesses. I've never taken my car to a shop but then again I've never pulled a head either. I can talk about how it works all day but without hands on experience I'm thinking this isn't the right opportunity for me to 'learn on the job'.

So from stock head, to refreshed with better springs and cams is probably a $2500-3000 at a shop or a $1700-$2000 job done at home. I think I'd prefer to take that difference in price to know its done right and not wonder about it.
 

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ELITECUSTOMBODY
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$1200 for labor is a bit much. Obviously you can save a lot of money by removing and installing the head. Machine shop will charge around $400 to freshen up the head and shiming. The time to remove,install the head,cams and button everything up would take 4-5 hours,little more if you're still on stock twins,stock fan,intake mani,etc.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
$1200 for labor is a bit much. Obviously you can save a lot of money by removing and installing the head. Machine shop will charge around $400 to freshen up the head and shiming. The time to remove,install the head,cams and button everything up would take 4-5 hours,little more if you're still on stock twins,stock fan,intake mani,etc.
I'm definitely giong to look into this further, I'm sure I can pull the head myself, one thing I can do is a read a manual and turn bolts, I just don't trust myself measuring and checking shim tolerances and degreeing the cams.

BTW - Check your pm's, finally sold my old headlights and wanted to talk to you about restoring my 98's and adding a high beam ram air mod.

Thanks!
 

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For GSC S1's, dont forget the cost of a billet tensioner bracket, ~$375. And be ready for a very rich idle with the VPC, ask me how I know!

Definately take it to a shop, since one wrong turn on a camshaft during install can be a bent valve. And you cant just go to any shop, it has to be one that comes highly recommended for high performance on a DOHC engine.

Al
 

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Boost Junkie
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You can do the remove/install yourself. I am not sure if you could do it in 4-5 hours total your first time, but you'll learn a lot. I've done valve stem seals twice, cam install, shimming, timing belt, etc. as a shadetree mechanic, it isn't hard. Just take your time. Are you sure you need to have work done to the head?

Steve K.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
For GSC S1's, dont forget the cost of a billet tensioner bracket, ~$375. And be ready for a very rich idle with the VPC, ask me how I know!

Definately take it to a shop, since one wrong turn on a camshaft during install can be a bent valve. And you cant just go to any shop, it has to be one that comes highly recommended for high performance on a DOHC engine.

Al
Yeah, just not worth the risk for me. I didn't realize the tensioner bracket was so expensive, ouch!

You can do the remove/install yourself. I am not sure if you could do it in 4-5 hours total your first time, but you'll learn a lot. I've done valve stem seals twice, cam install, shimming, timing belt, etc. as a shadetree mechanic, it isn't hard. Just take your time. Are you sure you need to have work done to the head?

Steve K.
Really I just want to add cams, but I'll need upgraded springs, and my valve stem seals are shot, it puffs a failrly large white cloud on startup if its been sitting for a few days. So I figured if I'm going in might as well get it all up to code.
 

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adammackintosh.net
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i got my tensioner bracket for $200. deals are out there.

also the protocol for intererence cam instal is asy as hell. i will post later to confirm the process.
 

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Track Junkie
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Pulling the 2JZGTE head is not biggest PITA, I did it myself many many times. However, to install the parts and do it right, you will need to actually know what you are doing. While not as complicated as the block, there are many variables when installing the camshafts. If the machine shop cut too much when resurfacing the head, you will have a clearance problem, and might make your motor become an interference motor. You might not know about it until you actually install them. So when you keep turning the crank, there is Possibility bending the valves. Besides, when you are doing it, you will most likely to need tools to install the valve steam seals, so it might not turn out to be much dollar saving unless you have all the time and tools you need, except it's definitely a good learning experience. It is probably also a good idea to do the timing belt, water pump and check your crank pulley at the same time. BTW, stock 2JZGTE head gasket is about $130 + shipping from Curt, and ARP headstuds is ~$160 last time I checked.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
At a quick glance the cost is too much for me to consider right now, I don't want to half ass it and by the time I do everything I want I'll be at $3K. Would rather get a pro-efi if I'm gonna dump that much in right now.

Thanks for helping me get an idea on this.

Just to get the laundry list out here, this is what I would need.

GSC S1 Cams
GSC/BC/Supertech Springs
New Valve Stem Seals
New Head Gasket
Valve cover gasket???
ARP Head Studs
Billet Timing Tensioner
Possible machine work/valve guide/valve replacement
Timing Belt

This adds up fast.
 

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Why not replace the VSS and springs yourself with the head still attached? $20 for a VSS puller and around $100-120 for the Toyo Tool. I did the rope trick last summer to replace my VSS's and threw in BC springs and retainers while I was there.
 

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Boost Junkie
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Yes, no reason to rebuild your cylinder head. You are over thinking this. Get the VSS from Curt and all of the parts needed-he'll know exactly what you need. You're probably looking at anywhere from $200.00-$800.00 depending on if you do the water pump, steel tensioner bracket (Titan or SP), etc. No need to pull you cylinder head to install VSS, valve springs, and a set of cams. You don't have to get the titanium retainers if you use the BC springs. They can use stock retainers-this is what I did to keep cost down knowing I wouldn't be revving past 8000rpms with the stock bottom end. You can get just the springs for around $100.00.


Steve K.
 

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Not sure why you are removing the head if there are no issues?

When I installed my cams, I simply did cams/springs/retainers/valve stem seals. What are you trying to accomplish?
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Why not replace the VSS and springs yourself with the head still attached? $20 for a VSS puller and around $100-120 for the Toyo Tool. I did the rope trick last summer to replace my VSS's and threw in BC springs and retainers while I was there.
Yes, no reason to rebuild your cylinder head. You are over thinking this. Get the VSS from Curt and all of the parts needed-he'll know exactly what you need. You're probably looking at anywhere from $200.00-$800.00 depending on if you do the water pump, steel tensioner bracket (Titan or SP), etc. No need to pull you cylinder head to install VSS, valve springs, and a set of cams. You don't have to get the titanium retainers if you use the BC springs. They can use stock retainers-this is what I did to keep cost down knowing I wouldn't be revving past 8000rpms with the stock bottom end. You can get just the springs for around $100.00.


Steve K.
I have a buddy who was telling me we could do it without pulling the head, but like I said I'm in over my head here so I probably am making it more complicated than it needs to be.

Maybe a nice winter project, this same friend is wanting to buy my sc300 from me so we've already discussed some labor bartering with this sort of thing and if he did get the lexus he'd see first hand what he would need to do when he does cams.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Not sure why you are removing the head if there are no issues?

When I installed my cams, I simply did cams/springs/retainers/valve stem seals. What are you trying to accomplish?
Probably no need to remove it, I think I mis-communicated my intentions.

So let me ask this the right way. I want to install gsc s1 cams, I know I need new springs and valve stem seals. If I take my car to a shop and have this done how much labor for the following.

New Cams/Shimmed to spec
New Timing Belt
New Cam Gears
New Springs/retainers if needed
New Valve Stem Seals
New Timing Tensioner
 

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Pulled the head myself, purchased the parts myself, dropped off at machine shop. $250 later I had a cleaned, surfaced, and properly assembled head (even got to watch the guy do it). Could have done it for free myself at my uncles shop since he has all the precision tools, but for $250 why bother. Brought it home and installed it. Easypeasy.
 
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