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greasemonkey
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3,139 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I ordered a Sound performance F1 manifold for the 7MGTE in my 84 (pretty much the only company that still builds manifolds for the 7MGTE). I chose a twin scroll, and theindividual runner EGT bung option. Since my engine is in a MK2, they asked me to send them a motor mount and bracket, which I did. I informed them I would be running the turbo oil drain to my custom oil pan, and using an external oil filter mount, and that the MK2 has more room in the engine bay than the MK3 as it has a McPherson strut front suspension instead of a double wishbone, so it should clear the body fine if it clears in a MK3. I informed them I am using a Borg Warner S366 SXE with a 0.91A/R divided turbine housing, and 44MM Tial waste gates, with a 2JZGTE 3in vband down pipe.

They sent me these pics of the progress, and recommended that I test fit it to make sure it fits properly before coating, but I would have to pay the round trip shipping for this. I agreed. They sent these below pics of the manifold to show progress. Note that it is bolted to a 7MGTE while they fabricate it.Mock up pics are on the old 7MGTE in my 84, not the one currently being fully built.


Manifold01 by

williamb82, on Flickr


Manifold02 by

williamb82, on Flickr


Manifold03 by

williamb82, on Flickr


Manifold06 by

williamb82, on Flickr


In this last pic, you can see there is obviously no clearance for the oil sending unit or Turbo oil feed. I pointed this out to them before they ever shipped me the manifold to test fit it.


thumbnail (5)~2 by williamb82, on Flickr



They did not fix that issue before sending it to me to test fit. When it arrived, I noted that the lower waste gate pipe is absurdly long for no reason. They stated it is to allow the waste gate to clear the frame.


IMAG6333~2 by

williamb82, on Flickr


I liked the angle of the turbo, which is one of the reasons I opted for this manifold.


IMAG6334~2 by

williamb82, on Flickr


To my surprise, it has a billet collector, and not the fabricated collector shown in the photos on their website when I ordered it. I pointed this out and they have since updated their site.


IMAG6339~2 by

williamb82, on Flickr


I mocked up the 2JZGTE down pipe, my 44mm waste gates, S366 SXE turbo etc.. on the floor in the house to see how it would lay out before bolting into the car for mock up.


IMAG6349~2 by

williamb82, on Flickr



Once in the car, the lower waste gate could not be bolted up because it hit the stiffener bracket that bolts from the block to the R154. Now remember, they built this on a 7MGTE in their shop, and have done this for MK3's that use the R154 and have the same bracket in place etc.. as it is a stock 7MGTE bracket.


IMAG6398~3 by

williamb82, on Flickr


IMAG6429~3 by

williamb82, on Flickr


The base of my hand is touching the frame. That is how much room is between the frame and the waste gate flange.


IMAG6435~3 by

williamb82, on Flickr


Here you can see there is literally no room for a m12x1.25 to 4AN turbo oil feed fitting, much less with a 4AN hose fitting connected to it.


IMAG6403~3 by

williamb82, on Flickr


IMAG6450~3 by

williamb82, on Flickr


There is barely enough room for the tip of my finger between the port and the runner.


IMAG6405~3 by

williamb82, on Flickr


I sent the manifold back to them with these pics and the info on the issues. I also included an oil sending unit, a power steering pump with bracket, and 1 of my EGT sensors as I informed them all EGT bungs could face straight up except for the #3 runner due to the turbine housing, and I sent them the turbine housing as well to ensure proper clearance.

They then sent me these pics. It clears the oil sending unit and turbo oil feed now as it should have the first time.

IMG_6820 by

williamb82, on Flickr


Notice how they shortened the #3 runner so it is no longer equal length and has very sharp bends. It could have gone down lower for a more swooping bend to keep the length correct and improve the flow for that cylinder. I pointed out my concerns on that runner shape in regards to the other 5 when I got these pics.


IMG_6821 by

williamb82, on Flickr


IMG_6879 by

williamb82, on Flickr


The lower waste gate clears, though should have the first time around.

IMG_6878 by

williamb82, on Flickr
 

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greasemonkey
Joined
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3,139 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 · (Edited)
I didn't hear anything for weeks. I was expecting to received the manifold to test fit again before coating, since they recommended that I make sure it fits properly before coating. Instead, they "ceramic coated" it, and shipped it to me. When I unwrapped the bubble wrap, this is how I received it. It had obviously been dropped at least once before they wrapped it up to ship.


IMAG6674~3 by

williamb82,

on Flickr


IMAG6675~2 by

williamb82,

on Flickr


IMAG6678~2 by

williamb82,

on Flickr


This is the flange that bolts to the head, yes it is dented.

IMAG6676~2 by

williamb82,

on Flickr


This is the flange for the turbo. It is dented so badly there was a burr I had to file off before fitting the turbo to it.


IMAG6679~2 by

williamb82,

on Flickr


The EGT bungs were on the manifold, though I never got progress pics of those. Remember, they built this manifold on an actual 7MGTE. All of them are angled, though none of them needed to be except #3.

I have to install this EGT probe before putting the manifold on, and then I am not able to adjust the CPS at all.


IMAG6682~2 by

williamb82,

on Flickr


Here, I cannot get the probe in with the stud installed, or the nut on with the probe installed. Even if I were to grind the stud down, I would also have to grind the nut down, which means there would not be enough threads available for proper engagement. This one had to be installed before the manifold was bolted to the head also.


IMAG6686~2 by

williamb82,

on Flickr


IMAG6687~2 by

williamb82,

on Flickr


Proof they could all be pointing up except #3.


IMAG6704~2 by

williamb82,

on Flickr


IMAG6705~2 by

williamb82,

on Flickr


IMAG6708~2 by

williamb82,

on Flickr


Remember how I sent them a power steering pump and bracket? Well that blue hose is the inlet to the pump from the reservoir. it is touching that runner. I guess they expect me to run without power steering.


IMAG6698~2 by williamb82, on Flickr




After informing them of the damage to the manifold and the obvious issues, they refuse to fix it. They say it is because they did not have the car in their shop, though every issue had nothing to do with the car, but was issues with fitment to the engine, which they had IN THEIR SHOP!!! How they could possibly make these mistakes when it was literally right in front of them while building the manifold, I have no idea. The only options I had were to send it back for a refund, and be out ALL shipping costs, and remember i shipped it back and forth etc.. It is heavy and NOT cheap to ship, and also the credit card fees, or keep it and get it fixed myself. Well i need the manifold so I have no choice but to keep it and repair it. I am replacing 5 of the 6 EGT bungs and will likely redo the #3 runner so the bends are not so sharp and the length will be more equal to the other 5 runners. I am into this manifold as I received it from Sound Performance for about $2400, and still have to get it fixed, and get a REAL ceramic coating done as what they had done is less durable than Duplicolor engine paint. Decide for yourself if you think the work they do is worth your money before dealing with them.
 

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I've been on both sides of the counter in situations like this. Ultimately, this final outcome is precisely why so many shops of their level are not dealing with 7M stuff anymore.
I agree with you that there's some obvious and frankly surprising fabrication failures here, especially considering SP's long history of 7M experience. I would have expected fitment issues to be the result of the MK2 swap, not seemingly simple 7M fitment stuff. I know Larry is a dedicated OG 7M guy, so I am particularly surprised by this.

Ultimately I think either their 7M manifold will be that much better when this is all done (regrettably, at your expense) or they'll stop offering it entirely.

The fact that they offered you a full refund minus the shipping costs is pretty impressive to me, personally. I really think you should consider the depth of that. They were out at least twice the expected man-hours to fabricate this manifold, and still offered you a chance to return it for a full refund of the purchase price. That is standing behind their work.
Sucks to see that it didn't meet your expectations, and given the specifics, I understand why.

Doesn't change that SP is a top shelf shop and one of the top three Supra shops in the country. But having worked in high performance for years, sometimes you get bad outcomes only to find the gap in expectations is impossible to bridge, and that walking away is the best choice for the shop and the customer.

Hopefully with the manifold in-hand, you can work with a local fabricator to make it exactly what you wanted.
 
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greasemonkey
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3,139 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
They blamed this on not having the car on hand. Thing is, as I mentioned, there are literally no issues with fitment to the car. NONE! Plus, the MK2 engine bay is larger than the MK3 bay, so there is more room everywhere for the manifold, so it should have never been an issue. The only difference is the location of the motor mounting bracket. It is moved forward 1 set of holes, and they had the correct bracket on hand as I shipped it to them. If I return it for a refund, I am out over $250 between the back and forth shipping, CC fees, and several months of time, and for what? I still need the manifold, and no other shops make one, so I am stuck. I wish I had just bought the materials and built it myslef, and had I known about the billet collectors existence, I may have done just that. I will be doing that for my 2JZGTE swap for sure though. I didn't think it would be worth the time and materials invested for the trial and error to get the angles of the cuts perfect for the merge collector being that I do not weld for a living. To me, since they were supposedly a top shop, it was worth it to just let them do it as they were supposed to be the "experts".

Also, you can tell from the pics it was actually dropped, and quite hard, likely 2 or more times before it was wrapped in bubble wrap to ship.

In my opinion, they are NOT a top tier shop. A top tier shop would not have made these mistakes. How can you build a manifold for a turbo, and block the oil feed for the turbo? How can you build it and one of the waste gates hits the engine and cannot be bolted up? How can you add EGT bungs (a $200 option btw) with an actual EGT probe (they only wanted me to send 1, not all 6) in your possession, and have it hit a mounting stud that holds the manifold to the engine, and another prevent the cam sensor from being adjusted? These are not top tier shop mistakes. If they are a top 3 Supra shop in the country, that does not bode well for Supra owners. The engine being a 7MGTE has nothing to do with it. If you cannot see interference issues right in front of your face, the engine model isn't going to matter matter.

Also, the supposed ceramic coating. It is thinner than any engine paint I have ever seen. After test fitting, there are even more scratches than it arrived with. I have a TRD header on my 85 that is ceramic coated. It is ~35 years old. I can scrape it with a screwdriver and not scratch the coating on it. This thing rubbed the banjo bolt by the lower radiator hose and took off a huge amount of the coating down to the bare metal (doesnt matter as it has to be recoated after being fixed at this point anyway.). It is ridiculous. If you want to spend your money with them, go for it, but do not say you were not warned of their "craftsmanship".
 

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Regardless of who did the work, that manifold is pretty bad. I would be extremely disappointed if I had shelled out 2400$ for a manifold needing another ~600 (for conversation’s sake) in fab work if what was promised was a top tier product.
 

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They blamed this on not having the car on hand. Thing is, as I mentioned, there are literally no issues with fitment to the car. NONE! Plus, the MK2 engine bay is larger than the MK3 bay, so there is more room everywhere for the manifold, so it should have never been an issue. The only difference is the location of the motor mounting bracket. It is moved forward 1 set of holes, and they had the correct bracket on hand as I shipped it to them. If I return it for a refund, I am out over $250 between the back and forth shipping, CC fees, and several months of time, and for what? I still need the manifold, and no other shops make one, so I am stuck. I wish I had just bought the materials and built it myslef, and had I known about the billet collectors existence, I may have done just that. I will be doing that for my 2JZGTE swap for sure though. I didn't think it would be worth the time and materials invested for the trial and error to get the angles of the cuts perfect for the merge collector being that I do not weld for a living. To me, since they were supposedly a top shop, it was worth it to just let them do it as they were supposed to be the "experts".

Also, you can tell from the pics it was actually dropped, and quite hard, likely 2 or more times before it was wrapped in bubble wrap to ship.

In my opinion, they are NOT a top tier shop. A top tier shop would not have made these mistakes. How can you build a manifold for a turbo, and block the oil feed for the turbo? How can you build it and one of the waste gates hits the engine and cannot be bolted up? How can you add EGT bungs (a $200 option btw) with an actual EGT probe (they only wanted me to send 1, not all 6) in your possession, and have it hit a mounting stud that holds the manifold to the engine, and another prevent the cam sensor from being adjusted? These are not top tier shop mistakes. If they are a top 3 Supra shop in the country, that does not bode well for Supra owners. The engine being a 7MGTE has nothing to do with it. If you cannot see interference issues right in front of your face, the engine model isn't going to matter matter.

Also, the supposed ceramic coating. It is thinner than any engine paint I have ever seen. After test fitting, there are even more scratches than it arrived with. I have a TRD header on my 85 that is ceramic coated. It is ~35 years old. I can scrape it with a screwdriver and not scratch the coating on it. This thing rubbed the banjo bolt by the lower radiator hose and took off a huge amount of the coating down to the bare metal (doesnt matter as it has to be recoated after being fixed at this point anyway.). It is ridiculous. If you want to spend your money with them, go for it, but do not say you were not warned of their "craftsmanship".
Saying it's the absence of the car and not the obvious engine fitment issues does seem like a cop-out. I also have no explanation or excuse for the crappy finish or damage or the piss-poor EGT runner work.

Thing is, this is a pretty uncommon order. Whenever you make dozens if not hundreds of 2JZ or 1JZ manifolds for every 7M manifold ordered, the JZ manifolds will be a much better and more sorted out product. This was true of the old RPS manifold for the 7M-GTE, and many other 7M-GTE manifolds offered in the past. Sorry to say that this is far from a new issue with a 7M build regardless of the shop making the manifold.

I also offer that not as a defense for the obviously substandard manifold you received, but as an explanation of how/why they really are a top shelf Supra shop. It sucks that SP's current fabricator doesn't appear to be the same guy that made so many excellent 7M manifolds in years past.
 

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greasemonkey
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3,139 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
Ive got pics of an F1 manifold for a Mk3. It would fit my car without any issues. I have no idea why my manifold is so drastically different in design. You can see the runners do not even come close to interfering with the oil feed, oil sending unit, power steering reservoir line etc.. The motor mount bracket simply moves 1 set of holes forward on the engine to fit a MK2. No problem with this manifold. Aside from being a single waste gate instead of twin scroll, it would fit perfect, and was built for a MK3.

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greasemonkey
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3,139 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
Larry stated he has a new fabricator and would be willing to fix my manifold on a Facebook post. We have talked via DM's and he has given me his word that he will repair the manfold and return it to me as I do not want a refund. I need the manifold and there are no other shops offering twin scroll manifolds that will fit my turbo etc...

I will update once this process has been completed. I am very busy with work currently but am hoping I can ship it out by the weekend. Larry has provided a shipping label for me to return it for the repair.

2021-10-13 12_14_18- by williamb82, on Flickr
 

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Larry is the best!

Steve
 
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