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Discussion Starter #1
Is a windage tray really important ?

Took my motor apart and it doesn't have one . I plan on pushing 400hp or 420hp . But I read somewhere that is you run a windage tray with the factory balance shaft in place it won't fit .

What would be the best advice? As I plan on leaving my balance shaft chain and pump in tact.

Unless I'm low on funds might just not put the chain back in but still debating what to do there.
 

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Is a windage tray really important ?

Took my motor apart and it doesn't have one . I plan on pushing 400hp or 420hp . But I read somewhere that is you run a windage tray with the factory balance shaft in place it won't fit .

What would be the best advice? As I plan on leaving my balance shaft chain and pump in tact.

Unless I'm low on funds might just not put the chain back in but still debating what to do there.
Correct, cannot have the balance shaft assembly in place with a windage tray, one or the other is the only option. Most windage trays use the mounting holes that is there after the BS assembly is removed.
FYI, if you decide to remove the balance shaft assembly just remember to securely block off the oil feed hole to it on the block side.
I prefer to tap and plug the hole personally.

144308
 

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If you're mainly wanting to build the car for road use and occasional drag racing, a windage tray shouldn't be necessary. The balance shaft assembly is nowhere near as good as a properly designed, baffled, trap door windage tray but keeps oil reasonably well controlled. These cars haven't had significant problems with oil starvation.

If you're build the engine and plan to do road racing on the track or heavy auto-cross (auto-x) on larger courses with higher speeds, there may be a case to be made for a windage tray.

A couple other oiling and balance shaft-related items, if you're shooting for around 400 whp range and plan to get there with a smaller frame turbo (similar to Mopar Performance Stage 3), the engine may spin up very fast and the stock powder metal oil pump gears can have cavitation (tiny air bubbles) and bind, destroying the gears. Stock or modified S3 running more boost may not be a problem, but combine with nitrous and the pump will not be happy.

Depending on the engine's mileage, if you decide to keep the balance shafts in place and leave them functional, you'll want to verify the chain guides. If the plastic is still in good condition you may be able to re-adjust spacing to remove slack if there's wear. Preferable would be to replace the chain guides but I haven't checked availability lately and wouldn't be surprised if they aren't available separately from the entire assembly.

If you have questionable guides/tensioners and a lot of chain slack, I'd probably take a bolt cutter and cut it. Preferably you'd pull the assembly, tap and block the oil feed, then reinstall, but most people just cut the chain and leave in place. This worked ok when the cars were newer and the balance shaft assemblies didn't have much bearing wear, but if there's a lot of play and they aren't spinning you could lose more oil pressure than you're expecting, so at a minimum I'd install a mechanical pressure gauge off the block and watch pressure after cutting the chain.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
If you're mainly wanting to build the car for road use and occasional drag racing, a windage tray shouldn't be necessary. The balance shaft assembly is nowhere near as good as a properly designed, baffled, trap door windage tray but keeps oil reasonably well controlled. These cars haven't had significant problems with oil starvation.

If you're build the engine and plan to do road racing on the track or heavy auto-cross (auto-x) on larger courses with higher speeds, there may be a case to be made for a windage tray.

A couple other oiling and balance shaft-related items, if you're shooting for around 400 whp range and plan to get there with a smaller frame turbo (similar to Mopar Performance Stage 3), the engine may spin up very fast and the stock powder metal oil pump gears can have cavitation (tiny air bubbles) and bind, destroying the gears. Stock or modified S3 running more boost may not be a problem, but combine with nitrous and the pump will not be happy.

Depending on the engine's mileage, if you decide to keep the balance shafts in place and leave them functional, you'll want to verify the chain guides. If the plastic is still in good condition you may be able to re-adjust spacing to remove slack if there's wear. Preferable would be to replace the chain guides but I haven't checked availability lately and wouldn't be surprised if they aren't available separately from the entire assembly.

If you have questionable guides/tensioners and a lot of chain slack, I'd probably take a bolt cutter and cut it. Preferably you'd pull the assembly, tap and block the oil feed, then reinstall, but most people just cut the chain and leave in place. This worked ok when the cars were newer and the balance shaft assemblies didn't have much bearing wear, but if there's a lot of play and they aren't spinning you could lose more oil pressure than you're expecting, so at a minimum I'd install a mechanical pressure gauge off the block and watch pressure after cutting the chain.
so i removed the chain already, it's in tackt . the guide are worn very slightly. im Probably going to take your advice, and leave the chain off and leave the pump on . so i don't have to tap anything motor has about 130k on it but , it's super clean, and i won't have to machine the crank or anything, so machine shop is machining my head and block also doing a 20 over. so i'm left with forged rods know and pistons that i have to find on the cheap. My logic is if a stock block can do 500hp with minor issues unless redlined daily. Can i just reuse stock rods and get oversized pistons? i've asked on another thread but , and i've got mixed answers so im trying CARID website , they allow you to do payments and i might just go for rods and pistons .

don't want to make this confusing on anyone or my self, but so far you guys are giving me good advice which is hard to find now a days.
 

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If you've already got the engine out and you are sending it to a machine shop I'd pull the balance shaft assembly and get a set of crank straps and have the machine shop machine the bedplate and then get it align honed. While not common, the bedplates have been known to fail. Then get a windage tray.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
If you've already got the engine out and you are sending it to a machine shop I'd pull the balance shaft assembly and get a set of crank straps and have the machine shop machine the bedplate and then get it align honed. While not common, the bedplates have been known to fail. Then get a windage tray.
I read on a dsm forum or something along the lines of a windage tray isn't important . And a couple of guys here mentioned it. So gonna skip that. But honing the bed plate is gonna be done since the machine shop had me bring it in for what ever reason. But I'm assuming they'll just use it to mount it to there machine . Hopefully I can get this promotion at work and have enough winter funding money to purchase the strap kit. But then again only time will tell.
 

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500 on the stock rods I wouldn’t personally do,forged rods and pistons. Also you are going to have to have more supporting mods to reliably run 500 even intermittently and this is with a very good tune.
 

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If the engine is apart, have them drill, tap and plug the balance shaft oil feed if you're sure you're never go to reinstall working balance shafts. That will minimize the chance or leaks out the balance shaft assembly.

The forums may make it sound "easy" to hit 500 whp but it requires a very carefully upgraded engine and a perfect tune. You might be able to safely hit around low-400 whp range on stock pistons and rods. Over that and you're really, really pushing them. You probably don't want to use aftermarket forged pistons on stock rods either, as they'll be much heavier than the stock, relatively light cast pistons, which will place much greater loading forces on them.

Another item, I'd be very wary of machining the bedplate and lower block mating surfaces. They're machined to match from the factory and unless done perfectly could result in sealing problems or poor contact and clamping forces, which is extremely important as they are also your main bearing caps. If you really want to push into the 500 whp range then the stock, non-reinforced bedplate will be a weak point. Same thing with stock oil pumps at high power levels.

Be very realistic with your power goals and intended use of the car and let that guide your upgrades. To make those very big numbers repeatedly, safely and for a long time will require a big outlay of money and doing it right the first time.
 
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