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1981 928S Euro Advice

 
Old 12-21-2007, 02:37 PM
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MPDano
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Cool 1981 928S Euro Advice

I am picking up a non-running used 928S Euro Model tomorrow on Saturday. I did do an inspection myself, I am handy with a wrench and it looks as if all is there. I also did note the VIN and California Emissions sticker on the door jamb. So I am assuming all emission equipment is there.

The current owner contacted the original owner and got some history on it. It has been non-op since 2002 and registered with the Calif. DMV as such, so there are no late fees involved, just transfer of ownership fees.

I did run a Carfax on it and it came up with multiple passed emission tests in the 90’s, then in 2002 it failed emissions, which seems to me when the engine was getting worn. It shows 99K on the dash and seems to match up with what was showing on Carfax. A recent entry in Carfax states that the “Title issued or updated – Not built to US standards.” I questioned the owner and he said original owner passed last smog in 99. That all seems to match up, but I was wondering does it just say “not built to US standards” because it’s a Euro model?

I am getting the 928S for $850 and am going to take it on as a project. Can you give me some veteran advice? I really really appreciate it.
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Old 12-21-2007, 03:02 PM
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failing smog doesn't really mean a failing engine. It could be an out of balance air/fuel ratio or a failing catalytic converter.

Does the car crank?
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Old 12-21-2007, 03:02 PM
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BTW, Welcome to Rennlist.
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Old 12-21-2007, 03:06 PM
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HI Mongo and thanks for the welcome. I dont have possesion yet so I am only going from my initial inspection and owner feedback. I am told the engine is hard to turn and it may be toast. Original owner said it had overheating probs before going to a non-op status. I am just wondering of the "Not built to US standards" in the Carfax details. And yes you are right, as it could be multiple of things going on but wont find out till I get into it.
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Old 12-21-2007, 03:09 PM
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chances are if the engine had been overheating, the head gaskets are toast on that motor. If it's hard turning that could be pretty scary. Enough coolant may have gotten in the cylinders causing the engine to hydrolock. While I'm not saying that happened, a hard to crank engine could even mean a low battery of the car has been in non-op status.
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Old 12-21-2007, 03:24 PM
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The car is NOT an S not the 4.7 engine .... good luck !
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Old 12-21-2007, 03:26 PM
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Ok, so the rear bumber that says 928S is probably a replacement? Is it because of the year? Please explain as I am learning about this car.
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Old 12-21-2007, 03:28 PM
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MPDano--

Where's the car now? If it's in any of the major metro areas, someone from the list can join you for another look-see. Take a compression gauge, a plug wrench, a squirt-can of oil, a set of jumper cables with you to check the engine. You'll want to verify the engine number to make sure it is in fact a Euro S, and not just a Euro with S trim added. Value is in the S engine, otherwise it's not worth the aggravation. And it may not be worth it anyway, depending on the condition of the rest of the car.

In Cali, it's the seller's responsibility to get the car past smog, by the way. There's no legal way to sell a car here as a 'parts car', off-road use. etc. If it's gonna be registered. That gray-market early Euro has CIS mechanical injection, plus whatever the importer decided to add on to get it through the import process. Might have stuff grafted on to it, distributor changed or recurved, cats added, oxy sensor and modulating loop added. All depends on who did the mods and the certification on import. MAKE SURE you get the federalization paperwork with the car, or you may be doomed to having the car parked in your garage forever.

If you are in the greater LA area, I'd be happy to visit the car with you.
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Old 12-21-2007, 03:47 PM
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HI Bob,

Great input and the car is sitting in San Diego, Cali. The seller does have the current California DMV Title. I would think you couldn't even register the car in Cali if it didn't have proper Emissions installed and working. I am new to Federalized Papework as I never heard of this. If the seller doesn't have it. Would the DMV have such records on file?
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Old 12-21-2007, 03:51 PM
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Body is pretty straight, no noticable dents or dings. Interior will need some work. All new locks and tumblers will be part of the deal as original key is missing. All seems to be there as far as I can see. Oh, do you know of any repair manula for the 81 928? I can't seem to find it on Haynes or Chilton.
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Old 12-21-2007, 04:51 PM
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The 928S is a $20 DECAL that you stick on the rear cover ...the car has no S spoilers , no S wheels just the decal ....
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Old 12-21-2007, 05:29 PM
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Originally Posted by MPDano View Post
I am picking up a non-running used 928S Euro Model tomorrow on Saturday. I did do an inspection myself, I am handy with a wrench and it looks as if all is there. I also did note the VIN and California Emissions sticker on the door jamb. So I am assuming all emission equipment is there.

The current owner contacted the original owner and got some history on it. It has been non-op since 2002 and registered with the Calif. DMV as such, so there are no late fees involved, just transfer of ownership fees.

I did run a Carfax on it and it came up with multiple passed emission tests in the 90’s, then in 2002 it failed emissions, which seems to me when the engine was getting worn. It shows 99K on the dash and seems to match up with what was showing on Carfax. A recent entry in Carfax states that the “Title issued or updated – Not built to US standards.” I questioned the owner and he said original owner passed last smog in 99. That all seems to match up, but I was wondering does it just say “not built to US standards” because it’s a Euro model?

I am getting the 928S for $850 and am going to take it on as a project. Can you give me some veteran advice? I really really appreciate it.
I was going to look at this car as possible project too. You beat me to it. And my wife is really happy about that!

Please keep us updated on your progress and post some pictures if you can.

Good luck,
Glen
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Old 12-21-2007, 05:44 PM
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Jim bailey - 928 International
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The ONLY aftermarket manual was the Chilton which has been out of print for maybe 10 years and had ZERO electrical information. Feel free to call me and we can talk about your car...
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Old 12-21-2007, 06:03 PM
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I pretty much acquired the same thing...but mine was running...kinda. As far engine issues, you are just going to have to methodically go through the car one item/system at a time until it is all sorted out.

A couple of things to look for when you go see the car is the stamp on the block. Mine reads M28/12 Which means 4.7L Automatic. This stamp is located on the top front of the block just left (passenger side) of the thermo housing/water bridge and just right of the Auxiliary Air Valve.. You may need to push the wiring harness out of the way. M28/10 is 4.5L auto, M28/09 is 4.5L manual, M28/11 is 4.7L manual and of course the M28/12 is the 4.7L auto.

You will also see a Warm Up Regulator directly in front of the intake plenum attached to the block. Where the gas feed and return lines are, you should find a hose with a banjo fitting that runs back to the fuel distributer. If you follow this to the driver side of the engine, there should be an electrical 2 pin plug with some after market wiring running to the cowl into the car to the passenger foot well fuse panel area. There you will find a US federalization CIS box. This is also hooked to the oxygen sensor in the exhaust. This right there will tell you if the car has been federalized. Also look underneath the car by the bell housing to see if there is an oxygen sensor in the exhaust.

You need to get the car running before you can get titled and such. The best you are going to do at the DMV right now is just register it "In-Op". I haven't even bothered to do any of that yet here in Oregon. It's not on the road and what the heck do they know. Why fork out any cash now. The car has been in op for a while, so whats the difference. To get the legal road stuff, you will have to be able to drive the car there for a physical inspection and then get it smogged.

I am a quick study on these things by asking lot's of questions and just taking things apart and putting them back together. If you have any mechanical know how, you will see what is right and what is wrong. I tend to remove all previous owner wiring and foolish add-ons because they are just future trouble. I am very close to registering my Euro, I just have some small issues at this point to sort out. I bought the car thinking I was buying a running beater, but basically opened up a whole can of worms that I have been chasing for the last 3 months.

Good luck, do several searches on this forum before you ask questions that have already been answered and if you can't find what you want, ASK! This is the best place on the planet for 928 info!
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Old 12-21-2007, 06:37 PM
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Keith I talked with the owner of this car before he listed it for sale. We concluded that it was NOT an S and opted not to buy it. The ZZZ in the middle of the vin number usually makes the DMV computer wig out ! It is highly unlikely that the car will smog (failed in 2002) ...since it will probably be referred to a State Smog Referee not just a test only but the State guys ...I believe that this car has not moved under it's own power for YEARS ! I seriously doubt that the none op papers were filed each year and the federalization papers are long gone...
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