Was referred to the site by a kind gentleman who sold me a set of studded snows on factory steelies in Lacey - thanks again!
First car (and what little mechanical experience I had) was an 86 22re Toyota PU 4x4. When I lost reverse, decided to take a chance and trade for an 89 Loyale with the 4x4 high low - despite having a blown headgasket. Found a guy on CL named Able who has been working on subarus far longer than i've been around town. After finding a running motor in Seattle ($150) he came down and did the swap, along the way I fell in love with the genius that is Subaru engineering! Once the car was running (with blown head gasket motor in the garage) he came back and showed me how to replace the front axle and hub assembly. Car has been on the road for two months now. Replaced the thermostat (there wasn't one in the salvaged motor...) and on my first run down to lacey the car got close to 30 mpg - my excitement is now through the roof LOL. Have also replaced the front rotors; calipers are operable so were left original for now.
When we pulled the original motor (car has 275k) there was no coolant, wasn't surprising as the passenger head gasket was blown, with evidence the previous owner tried a white stop leak (visible once the intake was removed, as well as all over the underside of the motor). Having drained the caramel frappacino looking oil out of the block, I am curious as to the actual condition/damage done to the motor. This is why I came to the USMB. I have a chilton manual and have read up on removing the cylinder heads, but am looking for advice on the issue.
Ideally, I would like to rebuild this motor and learn how these things really tick - not comfortable taking this thing to elk camp in the fall on the current motor, however well it may be running. Reading online, it appears my options are a regasket/reseal kit, or a complete rebuild kit. Being on a tight budget - with a few other loud hobbies - I am hoping to do all or most of the work myself. Have a friend who worked at a garage with machine shop nearby if the heads need to be resurfaced.
What would the first step be in diagnosing the damage (can I do a compression test with the intake manifold off?) I am most concerned about removing whatever crap the PO added to the coolant system - is a complete tear down my best or only option?
Dont mean to ramble, but thought i would throw out a line before pulling the valve covers..