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So it seems like I might have stumbled upon a really good deal. The only owner of this car did change the oil and he spun a rod bearing. So the guy who is selling it to me bought it from him and took it back to his house. He is in the process of a complete rebuild. New crank, new valves, new clutch, seals, gaskets, he is doing everything because why not? Hes already in the engine. He is a super good mechanic and I trust his work will be better than any old rebuild shop. The car 70,000 miles on it, standard transmission, exterior and interior are in super good shape 10/10. He wants 5,000 for it which to me seems like a screamin deal. What do you guys think?

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that's decent.   if it's an SUS or a base L model that makes a significant difference.  we can assume yours isn't a base model though.  it looks like a decent deal with the excellent condition, low
miles, and rebuild...probably a couple thousand less than similar condition vehicles at dealers in your area.

 

you'll be hard pressed to get a unanimous vote for "screaming deal" on this forum though.

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The weakness of the 99 motor is head gaskets. Better to replace the HGs with genuine Subaru OEM HGs, while the motor is apart. Also, prolly best to replace the timing belt and tensioners.

 

Subie motors aren't known for spinning rod bearings without a good cause, particularily at 70K miles. Was the motor run when low on oil? Was the oil changed regularily? The spun rod bearing raises a red flag with me enough to cause concern on the entire health of the motor.

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If the entire engine is being rebuilt and I mean new rings, bearings, cylinder hone, etc, then it will probably be a worth while investment.

 

If he didn't replace the rings and have the block honed, walk away. The difference in doing oil changes every 3,000 miles vs 5-7,000 or never, will eat the rings up faster then you could imagine. I have seen cars with lower miles that had oil changes done further apart, consuming oil at 50k miles (2010 Forester). Usually they will really start consuming oil around 150k miles and I mean, eating 2-3 quarts between oil changes.

 

I've seen plenty of Subarus with spun bearings and it's almost always from lack of oil. Doesn't matter if it eats it or leaks it, if the oil level is not monitored and it runs low, you'll end up with a spun bearing.

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The weakness of the 99 motor is head gaskets. Better to replace the HGs with genuine Subaru OEM HGs, while the motor is apart. Also, prolly best to replace the timing belt and tensioners.

 

Subie motors aren't known for spinning rod bearings without a good cause, particularily at 70K miles. Was the motor run when low on oil? Was the oil changed regularily? The spun rod bearing raises a red flag with me enough to cause concern on the entire health of the motor.

 

25D's and their wonderful 48mm rod journals throw bearings like it's opening day at Fenway Park.

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