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My S2 coupe bit of a rebuild and repair thread.

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  • My S2 coupe bit of a rebuild and repair thread.

    So continuing on from this thread I figured it's now time to start a project thread with all the progress, issues and problems this "standard" S2 has.

    So to recap it's a 1995 S2 (ABY) coupe with with 107K on the clock.

    With some awful wheels on the car that don't fit the car correctly, and rubs when the car is on full lock. Picture of this wheel was take after driving back home for the first time after collecting the car, I've never seen soo much rust covering a wheel & tyre before.
    1635963550822 (Large).jpg
    As you can see from the brakes behind the wheel, they are very crusty and in desperate need of replacing but that is only the top of a very rusty scrap pile called the S2 running gear... More on that later.

    So first job on the list was the glovebox it's been bodged at some point with a nut & bolt and did not close properly, well not without a fair amount of help..
    With half the plastic missing and a rusty nut & bolt had been used as a bodge, it was at this point I figured the last owner had tried to spend as little as possible on servicing & repairs.


    So a replacement glovebox has been sourced and in the time being a more simple an nicer solution was used. Simple plastic clip that was the same dimeter as the hole in the glove box, and a self tapping screw to allow the hinge to pivot.




    So that was the glove box fixed.

    Next up was oil & filters. Now this car you could almost class as a barn find. It was last run in 2015, then stored away, so it was in desperate need of a good service. First up the pollen filter.
    I would say this is over 6 years old

    It just fell apart when removed.

    Found this on the Sunday so Monday morning this lot was purchased.

    So along with the new pollen filter new air filter was fitted and the 13 year old K&N (which had never been cleaned since fitted) was also dumped


    Next up was to change the oil, the sump plug was just about welled on and took a breaker bar to remove it.

    Looking at the service history the oil was changed about 8 years ago. With that done I moved onto the exhaust. The last owner changed for a stainless system, but they must have used the old hangers as they were completely shot.
    Mid section had failed completely.

    New rubbers look a little stronger than whatever was fitted before.

    Next up thermostat. Noticed on the long drive home the car never got up to temp it was always around 70deg. So the thermostat was swapped out.

    Picture below shows the original OEM from the car on the left, new OEM in the middle and an aftermarket on the right. For god sake don't bother with the aftermarket, it does not give the amount of flow required to cool the engine and it easily over heats. So that went in the bin and a new one from TPS was fitted, which made a difference but it now took a little bit longer to over heat.

    So changing the stat was the tip of the cooling issues with the car. If left at idle for a long time the car would over heat and yet the fan would not kick in, so after a lot of head scratching and flushing the system another 3 times. I decided to replace the main rad. I found the AUX rad was getting very hot and the main rad was not getting hot enough for the temperature switch to activate as its located at the bottom of the main rad. So the old rad and coolant bottle was chucked. and new ones ordered.


    11-1635965948196 (Medium).jpeg

    So the replacement radiator fitted 80% and as you cannot by new ones from Audi anymore, it was a good few mm narrower than the genuine rad so the top mount no longer reached.

    Now I could have packed it out with spacers but I was in the mood for a bit of welding so off to B&Q for a bit of flat bar to extend the bracket

    So chopped the end off and welded in a 5mm section

    Then added a washer on the end otherwise it fouled on the lower screw
    Don't laugh too much at the welding, I only whip the welder out about once a year at most!

    Last edited by B5NUT; 11 November 2021, 21:34.

  • #2
    Next up was to look at the aircon system, I know that was not working when I picked up the car, so when I took the radiator out the condenser fell apart, so new condenser and dryer was ordered, as I've no idea how long the system has been exposed to the open air.


    New condenser was fitted however as usual with "non-genuine" parts they need a slight modification before they would fit. So whipped out the Dremel so the mounting hole aligned

    While there was a big hole in the engine bay another little job was done, and this ones has got a bit of a story behind it! So when I first drove the car the brakes were absolutely shocking, however the car had passed an MOT a few weeks earlier. Now how the hell this car passed an MOT god only knows, it must have been done by a "mate" of the seller as there is no way in hell this car should have passed an MOT.

    Now when got the car back home one of the first things I did was to take it to a friends garage so I could take a look at the car on the ramps and also get him to MOT the car but not register it as it were. So as I expected it failed. Shocks, brakes, steering rack gaiter, exhaust hangers, and a few other issues... So in essence the MOT was not worth the paper it was printed on, and no use as toilet paper as it's too hard... Now I don't have too much of an issue with this as I was planning on ripping the underside of the car apart anyway, but I was now going to have to do it sooner rather than later as it were. However it's worrying than this practice still goes on, someone could be driving that death trap around the road without even known what horrors lie beneath.

    Anyway here's a picture of the big hole in the engine bay


    And the first of the MOT failure items, the rubber gator should have been attached to the other end as you can see the remainder of the boot on the left but had long since departed, it was rock hard and look like it had failed years ago.


    New one fitted.
    While I was in there a new steering damper was fitted, the old one had become incontinent and sprayed it's contents over the engine bay and it's self. Due to the lack of oil it also had about 3" of play before it did any damping.

    Nice shiny new one fitted and the rusty piece of junk in the bin.


    Back to the aircon a new dryer was fitted as the old one was well passed it. It was a ****** to remove the big old nuts were well seized


    Few minutes with the MAPP gas torch they shifted and a new one fitted.

    Also found a bit of oil in the aircon pipe to lubricate the new o-rings. Nice.

    So while I was working on the above task I sat down with a large cup of coffee, and started to work through ETKA and look for all the parts I would need to sort out the running gear. Few hours later and more cups of coffee that I will admit to. Ebay, autodoc, local autoparts store and a few other sources a hole host or parts were ordered and a week later this lot turned up. Note that this is nowhere near all of the parts required to complete the rebuild. You have got to love shiny boxes of car parts. Hmmmm


    My workshop looks like a local branch of TPS at the moment.

    Note the complete lack of OEM parts that's due to the fact that most of the forum member with know is that 98% of the parts on this car have been made obsolete by Audi, and almost 80% are almost impossible to find. (Like shocks) Joy!


    • #3
      Great project thread. I wish I could be bothered to take decent pics along the way.
      91 Modded 3B
      14 A6 Avant Black Edition


      • #4
        Final job to complete on the aircon system was to fix the low speed fan, this should come on when the aircon system is switched on, and on my car this didn't work. So a new resistor was required. It's an obsolete part what a surprise, so after a quick google search I found a new one in America for $20. Result.

        Old crap one.
        1635975117816 (Medium).jpg
        Nice shiny and new working one (hopefully)
        1635975170753 (Medium).jpeg

        You have to love some of the weird old tech in this car. Or maybe I'm just strange!

        Just before I ripped the front suspension out I wanted to take a quick look to see what horror awaited me. However even I was taken back by this stupid modification.

        So these non standard Audi wheels have been fitted to the car, now to make them fit the previous owner has used spacers, and not the hubcentric well engineered spacer, just some double sided taped on spacer with more holes in it than a bath sponge. Even with the gash spacer fitted the wheels did not fit 100% as they rubbed on the arch liner when on full lock.. However what really got my goat was the wheel nuts. Now when I removed the wheels I got the breaker bar out as I figured they would be well on after god knows how many years, but how wrong I was. They were just barely tight, as the sodding bolts were too small for the wheel/space combo and so were held on by 3 ish threads. To say I was upset after finding this ****** dangerous mod was an understatement. For god sake if your fitting spaces to your car then buy longer bolts if you don't then your a ****** idiot.

        The biggest bodge spacer I have ever seen, 1 guess where they went.

        You can just make out in this image the amount of clean threads in the hub looks like 2-3 rest are covered in rust.

        Before I move on to ripping out the suspension, someone on the forum noticed something strange on the wastegate of the car. Now I asked the seller if the car was standard and had not been remapped, to which they said no it was a standard car.. You all know where this was going!

        However this little modification to the wastegate would indicate someone's been playing around.

        Also found the N75 valve was unplugged and there was an error code on the ECU about communication to the valve.

        A somewhat rusty & broken N75 valve

        And the connector which has been tapped up. O dear.
        So off to look at the ECU and sure enough someone's been in there. ******.
        I've been told this is a superchip modification which would have been done in the late 90's. It's a crap way of modifying the car and has long been obsolete.
        So next step was to reverse all of these modifications.

        First up a replacement N75 valve, the old one was damaged where the metal & plastic meet and the rust had got in and cracked the plastic hose connector.


        Next was to look at the wastegate, thankfully the base of the wastegate had not been mucked around with so just needed a new spring cap.

        The standard spring on the left has far less strength in it, and it's not adjustable.

        Next up the suspension & arches...
        Last edited by B5NUT; 17 November 2021, 09:07.


        • #5
          Originally posted by SteveH View Post
          Great project thread. I wish I could be bothered to take decent pics along the way.
          Have to take pic's, my memory is not good enough to remember how it all goes back together! There are a couple of hundred at the moment and counting. It would be a different story if the S2 was covered in ELSAWIN.


          • #6
            Finally getting around the to suspension, which is all in a rusty & very sorry state.

            There is even small amounts of rust on the body work as you can see near the flexi pipe which needs to be addressed. Not totally happy about all the black underseal that has been painted over the rust which will all need stripping back to get to the original paint.


            These mud flaps are for the bin, god only knows what they are from but they have seen better days, and it's been held on a a bunch of nasty clips.

            Everything got a layer of black underseal, why you would paint underseal over rust I have no idea.

            Driveshafts also thick with rust and it's had CV boots before

            Here is the nasty brakes, they worked kind of! They were in a very bad condition, took nearly 100psi to remove one of the pistons.

            Calliper mounts also in a sorry state, but someone has been in there recently as there was fresh copper slip on the slider pins. My guess is they were seized so the place that did the MOT greased them up to get the brakes working again, if you could call that working.

            Other side was also stripped down, and the shock had failed badly on this side. It was amazing how much oil is inside the shock as it was dripping of the suspension parts.

            Anti roll bar out, not in too bad a condition

            Now I had not planned to take the front subframe out this year but seeing this rust it also got ripped out Good condition subframes are hard to come by for the S2. You can no longer buy them new so good condition used one sell for silly money.

            6 bolts later the front subframe was removed. The picture above was the worst of the rust so it was not in bad condition.

            one very failed shock absorber.
            Next up was the strip down so all the parts could go for blasting and powder coating.

            First problem was removing the strut cap so I could get the knackered shock out. This is torqued to 220mn and has been on there for 26 years and rusted solid!

            So I make a quick tool using pipe grips and 1.5 meters of scaffolding tube. That did the job.

            Then press out the bushes on the lower arms.

            Then removed the hubs and the bearing from the housing. However at this point my press gave up so off to a garage and get them removed.


            • #7
              So with that lot sorted off to the shot blasters and get all that lot cleaned up. A week later it was all returned in a far better condition.

              The powered coat is quite thick, but some parts have an extra coating of epoxy.

              While waiting for the shocks to turn up lots of little jobs to get on with. First rebuild the brakes.

              They came back from the powder coating looking like this.

              I've left the old pistons in so the blasters would not damage the inner bore.

              I purchased new pistons as the old ones were rotten. So to prevent the rust on the new pistons they were painted with epoxy

              Along with the new pistons a new seal & covers were ordered.

              The inside of the brakes was then cleaned up to remove the rust, so the new seals would fit perfectly.


              Once most of the rust was gone assembly grease was applied and new seals fitted.

              Then new dust covers fitted and the new pistons were pushed in


              Then on to the mounts.

              I did not provide the guide pins to the plasters, I just cleaned them up my self and yes they are a different colour but your never going to see them with the wheels on. Also had to clean up the boots. Was going to buy new ones but they were almost £35 from TPS for 4 boots. So the massive amount of copper grease inside them was cleaned out and reused them as they are still in very good condition.


              Only takes a few min to re-grease the slider pins and refit the boots.

              Last edited by B5NUT; 11 November 2021, 20:00.


              • #8
                So this was a job I was planning to do some point next year with better weather. However I just could not live with the bodge job that some has done. Who the hell sprays underseal over rust!

                So this is what I had to deal with black rattle can under seal covering a fair amount of surface rust



                So underseal was removed by standard thinners, you can a buy 5 litre can of the stuff for around £15. Unless you want to get high as a kite then I would recommend sticking a mask on when using this stuff.

                Once the wheel arch was cleaned of underseal & 26 years of dirt, it was time to get out the grinder using twisted knot wheel, and a few smaller wire wheel brushes attached to a drill. At this point you spend the next 2-3 hours removing most of the rust and getting absolutely covered in crud, and you start to end up with something like this. Point to note is if the paint is sound then there is not not much point removing it, just look for all the rust and paint bubbling and grind that back.


                5-1636234938053 (Medium).jpg

                Once I'm happy I've found 99% of the rust, I treat all the ground back rust with fe-123 molecular rust converter (from as unless you get the area blasted you are never going to get rid of all the rust from all the tiny little rust holes. You could use a far more abrasive way of cleaning up the metal like a flap wheel, put there is a danger of cutting through the metal or leaving it very thin! I've used this molecular rust converter on other cars, and many years later the rust has not come back.

                5-1-1636234938053 (Medium).jpg

                No surprise I'm again reaching for the epoxy as the initial primer coat, it can be over painted and it goes on lovely and thick and will keep the rust away. It's simple to mix add 1 part component A to 1 part component B, then add between 5-20% thinners depending on how your going to apply it.​

                For under the arch a brush will give you a good enough result, with around 10% thinners

                Next up is the base coat, now as much as I would like to you just cannot brush some metallic colours, and this metallic green looked ****** awful applied with a brush so it was time get out the masking tape and the HVLP gun. Have to say I hate masking up cars it's one of the most boring jobs going. So the arch had 2 coats of base then 3 coats of 2K clear. Then you end up with something that looks like this.




                I know I could have got a better finish if I has sprayed the epoxy but there are so many different textures from seam sealer, underseal and normal spray paint it's impossible to get a perfect finish unless you strip back the entire area. In my view for the wheel arches, if the paint, sealer & underseal is still in good condition and it still rust free then leave it alone.

                Next up will be to kill some bushes while trying to press them into the subframe, yet another awful job the S2 had in store for me.


                • #9
                  So as a lot of member on here will know, pressing the bushes into the subframe on the S2 is a proper pain to the point where most give up and polybush the thing. However I do like a challenge. So I killed 2 bushes before I give up with the brut force and ignorance method.

                  Had a look around the web and for a post on another forum about stretching the inner of the bush before pushing it in. So I came up with this idea, which is to stick a bunch of old nuts in the press so the centre was slightly proud of the cup.
                  1-Screenshot 2021-11-11 203037.jpg

                  Also applied some silicon spray lube to the bush which was recommend on here and success. Took only a few minutes with the modified tool and the silicon spray.

                  2-Screenshot 2021-11-11 203110.jpg

                  3-Screenshot 2021-11-11 203132.jpg

                  4-Screenshot 2021-11-11 203213.jpg

                  So onto the next interesting job. Spark plugs!

                  Another little job done while I've been waiting on shocks to turn up. Spark plug change. Now I was unsure how this was going to turn out as I was expecting the plugs to put up a bit of a fight to get them removed turns out I was wrong. They were all very loose! Apparently this is a common issue on the S2, and they should be checked every service.

                  This is what the tip of each spark plug connector looked like, so have ordered replacements

                  All the plugs had a lot of melted rubber on them, but on the plus side they are all in good condition with no fouling.

                  So I'll be checking the plugs at least once a year.


                  • #10
                    A few of us have had spark plugs come out in the early days. 30Nm is the recommended torque for them. Hopefully the threads in your head are still good, looks like it from the threads on the plugs.

                    S2 Coupe 3B Project

                    Ur quattro restoration

                    S2 Avant

                    Boost is the new rock and roll!


                    • #11
                      Yes I did the replacements to 30nm, but will check them with 25nm as I don't want to over torque them and damage the threads.

                      Think the threads are Ok as they all the new plugs torqued up Ok.
                      Last edited by B5NUT; 11 November 2021, 22:01.


                      • #12
                        Also think I have finally put to rest my shock issue. I ordered a pair of Koni 86-2086S. I would have gone for the Bilstein 34-030868 but they are out of stock and the ETA date is February/March 2022. Not waiting that long for shocks!


                        • #13
                          I recently got some koni adjustables for the rear of mine , fitted perfectly


                          • #14
                            Nice work!


                            • #15
                              Enjoying your new thread. I think I have much the same jobs to do on my new Coupe.
                              Keep it up. You will have a fantastic car at the end
                              While you have the radiator out I would recommend changing the two small flexi coolant pipes. The thicker one is still available from Audi for about £12 and we'll worth getting as it's much more robust than anything aftermarket ( ask me how I know ). The thin one is nla but 10mm silicone coolant hose works nicely. Also inspect the hard pipe while you are there. Mine was badly corroded and I was lucky to find a good replacement as they are also nla. Alex (Error404) is hopefully making some stainless ones soon. Then test your after run pump while there. The list is never ending I'm afraid

                              Nothelle S2 Avant
                              Black Ur project
                              Ocianic Ur project gone
                              S2 Coupe project gone
                              Urs6 plus project gone