Does it really only take 12 steps to remove an air-cooled Porsche engine for repairs?
I wouldn’t have believed it, but Air Brigade recently “shadowed’ Air Brigade Charter member Charlie Hickey as he tackled his winter service project to fix an oil cooler leak in his 1972 Porsche 911T Targa.
In a previous service Charlie had replaced the gaskets, but the leak persisted so Charlie knew the engine had to come out again so the oil cooler could be sent to a radiator shop for internal repairs to the unit.
Charlie recruited Air Brigade members for assistance including TD King, Don Therien and Joe Esposito. Also on hand were PCA members Bob Disney and Mark Cigal. Air Brigade Commander Jim Moore thought it would be the perfect opportunity to record the process of engine removal.
Please be aware that every step was not photographed because there are many wires and cables requiring disconnection. Only the major mechanical steps were recorded.
Charlie is an advanced “shade tree” mechanic and has his garage set up with a two-post lift and a full complement of tools that makes the job easier. This was not the first time this numbers matching 2.4-liter flat-six engine had been removed, and will probably not be the last time.
The process started with an overview of what the team was tackling on top and underneath the engine bay. Contrary to new Porsches, you’ll note that the engine is readily accessible which facilitates the engine removal with only 12 steps.
Step One – Start the process by draining the oil. Since this car requires 10 quarts, allow time for everything to drain completely.
Step Two - Disconnect the shift linkage in the tunnel as opposed to at the shifter so that you can re-hook-up at installation without having to adjust the linkage.
Step Three – Set the proper placement of the jack points to lift the car so you can start disconnecting all hoses and wire connectors. On many early Porsches this lift points are crushed from owners using floor jacks without a lift puck.
Step Four – Disconnect the Universal joints
Step Five – Disconnect clutch cable, throttle linkage, speedometer and ground cable.
Step Six – Disconnect half shafts using a hex wrench extension.
Step Seven – Disconnection of oil lines requires special large Porsche wrenches that Charlie has owned for years.
Step Eight – Lower lift and check that all wires and cables are disconnected in the engine bay. In this case Charlie is disconnecting the electronic ignition.
Step Nine – Slide lift table under engine. A floor jack is positioned under the transmission while the lift table is positioned under the engine. Two by four’s are used on the lift table to provide a cushion for the heat exchangers to rest on.
Step Ten – Unbolt the two engine mounts on top and the two transmission mounts on the underside.
Step Eleven – Lower the lift table slowly and then slowly start to raise the lift to separate the engine from the chassis.
Step Twelve – Notice the combination of the lift jack and lift table that needs to slide out from under the car.
While the Air Brigade team was in the garage and crawling over an early 911 with its engine out, Charlie provided several of the unique aspects of the 911 that members may not have been familiar with including its side oil filler door and the MFI system.
Unique to a 1972 911 is the side oil filler door on the rear quarter panel. This appeared only in 1972 because Porsche found gas station attendants were mistaking the oil filler for the gas filler. Remember that back in 1972 gas stations actually had attendants who serviced your car.
The 1972 911T engine featured MFI, mechanical fuel injection so members also took the time to inspect the Bosch unit while Charlie described its intricate engineering aspects that brought fuel injection to Porsche motors.
Thanks to Charlie for sharing this process with Air Brigade.
Key words: air-cooled Porsche engine, Porsche engine removal, Porsche engine repair