3rd Generation Specific (1993-2002) 1993-2002 Discussion including performance modifications and Technical Support Sections.

Front main oil seal replacement

Old 11-30-15, 03:30 PM
  #1  
Rotary Enthusiast
5 Year Member
Thread Starter
 
96fd3s's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: NZ
Posts: 1,092
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Front main oil seal replacement

Hey guys, I need to change the front main oil seal on my car, its pissing out oil and spraying everywhere.

Im just doing the research before I do the job, trying to make sure im prepared and have all the parts I need and I was wondering if anyone knew anything about the "front pulley washer" / "o-ring"

Its shown in the workshop manual, I circled it in the below image..



My confusion comes as its shown in the workshop manual, but I was trying to find a part number for it, and on the mazdatrix website it says "not used" for 93-95 cars?
https://www.mazdatrix.com/b5.htm

Can anyone clarify if its required for the job, and if it is, can anyone tell me the part number for it, and/or is it a copper crush washer? any idea of its size?

(ps iv read about needing to keep the clutch depressed etc while performing the fix)

thanks
96fd3s is offline  
Old 11-30-15, 04:32 PM
  #2  
Sponsor
RX7Club Vendor
iTrader: (41)
 
IRPerformance's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: NJ
Posts: 10,961
Liked 47 Times in 42 Posts
The front main seal is labeled "oil seal" in your diagram. There is no safe way to replace that with the engine in the car. If you loosen the eshaft bolt and remove the hub, the thrust bearing can come out of place and then get pinched when you put it back together. The motor must be removed from the car and put on a stand with the eshaft pointing up to the 12 o'clock position so the bearing doesn't move. I would consider the miles and health of your motor before doing any of this as it may make sense to rebuild it while it is out.
__________________
http://irperformance.com
Engine builds, single turbo kits, parts sales, performance upgrades, maintenance, tuning
732-662-1794 [email protected]
Brand new Mazda oem 13brew motors available. $4599 NO CORE FEE. VERY LIMITED. Check out our new turbo kits http://www.irperformance.com/product...zda/rx7/turbo/
IRPerformance is offline  
Old 11-30-15, 04:47 PM
  #3  
Rotary Enthusiast
5 Year Member
Thread Starter
 
96fd3s's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: NZ
Posts: 1,092
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by IRPerformance View Post
The front main seal is labeled "oil seal" in your diagram. There is no safe way to replace that with the engine in the car. If you loosen the eshaft bolt and remove the hub, the thrust bearing can come out of place and then get pinched when you put it back together. The motor must be removed from the car and put on a stand with the eshaft pointing up to the 12 o'clock position so the bearing doesn't move. I would consider the miles and health of your motor before doing any of this as it may make sense to rebuild it while it is out.
Ugh well that's not very good news lol.

I take it what your talking about (the bearing moving) is the reason people say you need to keep the clutch depressed/wedge clutch pedal down while performing the fix? What's your take on that? Do you think there's a reasonable chance of it not moving if one does the clutch depress thing?

If I do attempt it, is there a way to tell if all is well before I start the car? I.e some wiggle somewhere, or turn the engine by hand or something?

I found these posts (on the rx8 forum though, but im pretty sure they apply?)..sorry for the wall of text!


"I want to give a general DIY’er approach to this and also put it in an easy location to find, also this might not be the “correct” way but it has worked for myself and others. Just did this over the past weekend and found some info but nothing very clear on how to replace. I did find the TSB from the dealer on how to replace but it also is not very descriptive.

What mine looked like... It was pissing oil like it was free, so it became time to go ahead at replace.
http://i1066.photobucket.com/albums/...ps5bbfcc51.jpg

IMPORTANT NOTE: This is somewhat easy…. but because of the thrust Torrington bearing on the Ecc shaft, if done wrong you can cause your car to become a yard ornament (need new engine).

DO NOT attempt if you are not comfortable with potentially rendering your engine useless, or if you cannot carry out steps 1-5 without a DIY to show you how.

Link To TSB

1. Put front of car on jack stands.
2. Remove upper intake & lower intake box. Tip: for the zip ties connecting the power wire to the lower intake use a flat head at bottom twisting upwards on each side and it allows the zip tie to slide out and be reused.
3. Remove battery and battery box. The box has 3 parts, the top is easy and just snaps in, the middle is tricky but also just clips to the bottom. The bottom has 3 10mm bolts holding it down, the two closest to the ECU box are tricky. I lifted the coolant line and used a 10mm open end gear wrench that swivels at the end.
4. Remove the A/C drive belt.. Loosen (do not remove) bolt on tensioner pulley, and then lower the tensioner using bolt at the top.
5. Remove Alternator Drive belt. Loosen bolt on the side of alternator (12mm) then use tensioner bolt on top of the alternator tensioner to lower the alternator. Tip: I had to tap alternator with a hammer to get it to start dropping.
6. Rotate main pulley till the alignment mark (middle of flattened ends) is at a ninety degree angle facing the passenger side Example: 7. *A* Place a brake stop (I used a piece of wood wedged between the seat and pedal) on the clutch pedal to depress it permanently during this procedure.
8. Remove starter (One 14mm stud and One 14mm bolt and nut), I was able to slide it in between the transmission and sub frame to hold it up
9. *B* During Step 10.1 Lock flywheel and do your best to not let the shaft spin. Tip: I used a friend, holding the prybar on a flywheel tooth and wedged the bar on the transmission housing.
10. *C* Remove Pulley Lock Bolt > Ecc Shat bypass valve > Spring > Pulley. Tip: I used a half inch drive wrench with a pipe over it extending it about 3 feet. Others have used a blow torch on the bolt to heat it up to remove. Others have used impact, but I don’t see how it could be done without a swivel neck with the engine in the car.
11. Remove Old Seal. Tip: I used a flat head wrapped in a rag to wedge it out of the housing.
12. Clean the housing of oil and debris & Replace with a New Seal. Tip: use a rubber mallet and tapped on the old seal over the new one in order to not damage the new seal. There will be a slight lip between the housing and new seal.
13. Lube the inside of the seal with oil.
14. Now follow steps 1-10 in reverse order. Pulley Lock Bolt Torque: Step 1> 188 ftlb Step 2> 216 ftlb

*A* Do this in order to keep the Torrington bearing correctly placed on the Eccentric shaft. The engine does not sit level. The weight of the flywheel will allow the shaft to slide away from the car and the Torrington bearing will become dislodged causing immediate engine failure.
*B* Do not use the starter cranking method as this could allow the Torrington bearing to dislodge.
*C* If the shaft key that aligns the pulley and Ecc shaft falls be sure to replace before putting the pulley back.

Disclaimer: By following this DIY you accept responsibility of any damages or harm to yourself or your vehicle, this is only a suggestion and retranslation of what I did in order to help others attempt."

and another poster in the same thread
"We just did 2 of these today following the process above. All went well. Both cars run. First one was about 2 hours, second, other that the custom reassembly, was closer to 1.

Observations:

The torch is not to deal with locktite, it is to deal with the sealer that is placed between the bolt and the hub. Based on how they go together, a well glued hub and bolt is not going to come off easy. A butane torch for half a minute or so around the flange part of the bolt really seems to soften up the sealer. Um, the bolt will be freaking hot when it does come off. So will the hub.

a small shim, like you would use to level cabinets, can be cut to fit between the back of the pressure plate and the edge of the hole for the starter as secondary insurance for the ES moving back. The stick on the clutch pedal method is the primary one. Do this after the bolt is cracked loose.

Be nice to whom ever is holding a bar against the flywheel. That is a hard job.

Make sure you are perfectly clear with any help that the pin is supposed to stay in, not that you are worried it will drop out. My assistant handed it to me and said, basically, it did not fall out. It carefully went back in. And everything seems to be OK.

The drawings all say that the pin is on the bottom of the shaft, no idea why, but it seemed strange. We checked several times. It worked.

This is the perfect time to clean the ESS. It is right there.

I pulled the pulleys off to make things easier to handle. They are keyed, they will go on both ways, but the bolts will only go in if you get them right. They were rather light, I am surprised that the light pulleys will make much difference.

Torque on the bolt. a 30" long breaker bar was deflecting a good 2 to 3 inches with 2 people pulling hard. The 400 foot pound estimate is likely not far off.

Some kind of seal puller might be nice, I used a set of bent nose long reach needle nose pliers to get it out. There is no way you can do it like in the TSB while the engine is in the car.

Also, the custom clutch pedal depression tool look an awful lot like a 29.5 inch piece of 1x2 pine braced against the outboard driver seat mount, after the plastic cover is pulled off.

Thanks again for the info."


oh and I figured out about the washer/oring.. (we have an o-ring and no washer)
cheers
96fd3s is offline  
Old 11-30-15, 05:04 PM
  #4  
Rotary Enthusiast
5 Year Member
Thread Starter
 
96fd3s's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: NZ
Posts: 1,092
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Also, if I do decide to attempt this; would it be better to attempt with the car sitting level as opposed to having the front jacked up?

If I understand correctly, essentially, i need to stop the E-shaft from sliding backwards, is that correct?
If that's the case, what if you jacked up the rear of the car and keep the front on the ground so it cant slide backwards? just brainstorming
cheers

edit; mazdatrix website says the clutch pedal trick is not required for 93-95 cars, but to wedge something behind the pressure plate & bellhousing to keep it forward. Maybe wedging it and jacking up the rear of the car is the way to attempt it?

Last edited by 96fd3s; 11-30-15 at 05:28 PM.
96fd3s is offline  
Old 11-30-15, 05:50 PM
  #5  
Senior Member
iTrader: (21)
 
Andre The Giant's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Dallas, Tx
Posts: 536
Likes: 0
Liked 5 Times in 4 Posts
The reason for the difference in instructions is because of the different clutch types.
The flywheel/clutch/E-shaft needs to be forced towards the front of the engine and pressure held there. The FC and RX8 clutch are both push type, so the flywheel is being pushed to the front of the engine when the clutch pedal is depressed and held down.

The FD is the opposite, pull type clutch, so the E-shaft is not going to have the right pressure against it with the clutch pedal pressed.
So they say to wedge a peice of wood, between the pressure plate and bell housing, pushing the whole assembly towards the front of the car.
The problems arise when trying to loosen the front bolt. Your peice of wood could come loose, and then you would have to pull the engine out to re-assemble the front stack correctly without crushing the bearing.
Andre The Giant is offline  
Old 11-30-15, 05:54 PM
  #6  
Rotary Enthusiast
5 Year Member
Thread Starter
 
96fd3s's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: NZ
Posts: 1,092
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by Andre The Giant View Post
The reason for the difference in instructions is because of the different clutch types.
The flywheel/clutch/E-shaft needs to be forced towards the front of the engine and pressure held there. The FC and RX8 clutch are both push type, so the flywheel is being pushed to the front of the engine when the clutch pedal is depressed and held down.

The FD is the opposite, pull type clutch, so the E-shaft is not going to have the right pressure against it with the clutch pedal pressed.
So they say to wedge a peice of wood, between the pressure plate and bell housing, pushing the whole assembly towards the front of the car.
The problems arise when trying to loosen the front bolt. Your peice of wood could come loose, and then you would have to pull the engine out to re-assemble the front stack correctly without crushing the bearing.
Thanks for that, so in theory jacking up the rear of the car quite high and keeping the front on the ground will help keep things in place?
96fd3s is offline  
Old 11-30-15, 06:06 PM
  #7  
Senior Member
iTrader: (21)
 
Andre The Giant's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Dallas, Tx
Posts: 536
Likes: 0
Liked 5 Times in 4 Posts
I think the effect would be negligible. Aka I don't think that would help at all. The only 100% sure way to do it with 100% chance of success with no risk is to do it with the engine out of the car, facing straight up and down.

People have proven that it can be done in the car. It is just risky.
You have to be very careful, and study the pictures of the front stack bearing assembly and how the parts fit together.
Andre The Giant is offline  
Old 11-30-15, 06:34 PM
  #8  
Sponsor
RX7Club Vendor
iTrader: (41)
 
IRPerformance's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: NJ
Posts: 10,961
Liked 47 Times in 42 Posts
Exactly. Pull the engine. No other way to guarantee it.
__________________
http://irperformance.com
Engine builds, single turbo kits, parts sales, performance upgrades, maintenance, tuning
732-662-1794 [email protected]
Brand new Mazda oem 13brew motors available. $4599 NO CORE FEE. VERY LIMITED. Check out our new turbo kits http://www.irperformance.com/product...zda/rx7/turbo/
IRPerformance is offline  
Old 11-30-15, 06:40 PM
  #9  
Rotary Enthusiast
5 Year Member
Thread Starter
 
96fd3s's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: NZ
Posts: 1,092
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Ok cool, thanks for that.
So since our clutches are pull type, does that mean that it will be pushing the e-shaft forward when the clutch pedal is out (achieving the same thing as the other gen's of rx7's with the clutch pedal in?) What if I put it in gear?

Even with all the warnings, i will probably attempt the fix.
If I screw it up, well then the engine needed to come out anyway. If i have success, then bonus.

If I do attempt to fix it with engine in car can I somehow tell if it was a success without starting the engine?

thanks..and sorry for all the questions. i know im (potentially) doing the opposite of whats best practice. I do appreciate your advice even if it dosent look like it because Im stubborn, lol

Last edited by 96fd3s; 11-30-15 at 06:44 PM.
96fd3s is offline  
Old 11-30-15, 06:48 PM
  #10  
Sponsor
RX7Club Vendor
iTrader: (41)
 
IRPerformance's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: NJ
Posts: 10,961
Liked 47 Times in 42 Posts
If you pinched the thrust bearing the engine will have no end play.
__________________
http://irperformance.com
Engine builds, single turbo kits, parts sales, performance upgrades, maintenance, tuning
732-662-1794 [email protected]
Brand new Mazda oem 13brew motors available. $4599 NO CORE FEE. VERY LIMITED. Check out our new turbo kits http://www.irperformance.com/product...zda/rx7/turbo/
IRPerformance is offline  
Old 11-30-15, 09:09 PM
  #11  
Senior Member
iTrader: (21)
 
Andre The Giant's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Dallas, Tx
Posts: 536
Likes: 0
Liked 5 Times in 4 Posts
Originally Posted by 96fd3s View Post
Ok cool, thanks for that. So since our clutches are pull type, does that mean that it will be pushing the e-shaft forward when the clutch pedal is out (achieving the same thing as the other gen's of rx7's with the clutch pedal in?)
No it won't be applying any pressure to hold the e-shaft forward. You'll have to manually jam it forward with some wood or something through the flywheel inspection hole.
Andre The Giant is offline  
Old 12-02-15, 04:32 AM
  #12  
Rotary Enthusiast
5 Year Member
Thread Starter
 
96fd3s's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: NZ
Posts: 1,092
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Alrighty, so tonight I swapped the seal out.
The old seal was pushed back into the front cover...I guess that would explain the really bad oil leak. (pic is after a little bit of trying to get it out, but anyway it was pushed back)


fitted a new seal,


I havnt tried it yet as I need to pick up some oil tomorrow, but i think it was successful. I felt the little "click" of movement back and fourth of the shaft before starting and I still had the little click afterwards so hopefully all is well.

I made a couple of wooden wedges and hammered them in through the service hole with a rubber mallet to keep the shaft forward.

I spose ill update after I fill it with oil and give it a try.
edit; the grey stuff on the end of the shaft was sealant, not a scratch
96fd3s is offline  
Old 12-02-15, 06:04 AM
  #13  
Moderator
iTrader: (14)
 
FourtyOunce's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Old Bridge, NJ
Posts: 1,790
Liked 59 Times in 45 Posts
Good luck ... I hope that thrust bearing didn't move on you while you.
FourtyOunce is offline  
Old 12-02-15, 07:39 AM
  #14  
BadAss DoItYourselfer
iTrader: (8)
 
jetlude's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Paradise
Posts: 827
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Did you get to old seal out? Or did you leave it in there
jetlude is offline  
Old 12-02-15, 01:01 PM
  #15  
Rotary Enthusiast
5 Year Member
Thread Starter
 
96fd3s's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: NZ
Posts: 1,092
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by jetlude View Post
Did you get to old seal out? Or did you leave it in there
lol of course I got it out, I would pull the engine before leaving that in there.
Will pick up oil today and see what happens
96fd3s is offline  
Old 12-03-15, 02:33 AM
  #16  
Rotary Enthusiast
5 Year Member
Thread Starter
 
96fd3s's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: NZ
Posts: 1,092
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
ok so everything is well. no signs of any problems after multiple hard pulls.

I feel slightly odd about this thread, almost like its taboo...I don't want to be the guy that puts people wrong and gives people the idea that this is good practice or you can go in unprepared.

Moral of the story is be sure you know what your getting yourself into if you attempt this with the engine in the car..know the risks..learn what can go wrong, and why/how...understand what your wedging and why, not just that you need to wedge something.
And lastly are you willing to gamble your engine?

thanks guys for putting the ***** up me, which is the duty of the forum in such situations. so well done. it drove home the severity of the operation and made me quadruple check and check again that everything was ok. I knew exactly what the float felt like and I would not have proceeded if anything had been funny. Without fully understanding what I was trying to accomplish (and the level of danger involved) I dont think I would have done a good enough job of trying to secure everything etc.
96fd3s is offline  
Old 12-03-15, 08:04 AM
  #17  
RX-7 Bad Ass
iTrader: (52)
 
DaleClark's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Pensacola, FL
Posts: 11,158
Liked 270 Times in 230 Posts
In this case I agree that it was worth a try with the motor in the car. Checking endplay before and after is key as well, if it's the same, then you can feel pretty good that you got it. If you did the job and the needle bearing crushed (no endplay), no biggie, just pull the engine and do it that way.

The good thing is I think this is the first time I've heard of the front main seal getting out of whack like that. Not sure what could have caused it, unless it was pushed way in during the original installation or something.

Now we need to talk about your positive terminal on the fusebox there. That bracket just unbolts from the fuse box, and then you can bolt the power wire right to the fuse box. Greatly reduces the chance of that shorting on something, and that's pure unfused power - that can easily cause an electrical fire.

Dale
DaleClark is offline  
Old 12-03-15, 12:16 PM
  #18  
Rotary Enthusiast
5 Year Member
Thread Starter
 
96fd3s's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: NZ
Posts: 1,092
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Originally Posted by DaleClark View Post
In this case I agree that it was worth a try with the motor in the car. Checking endplay before and after is key as well, if it's the same, then you can feel pretty good that you got it. If you did the job and the needle bearing crushed (no endplay), no biggie, just pull the engine and do it that way.

The good thing is I think this is the first time I've heard of the front main seal getting out of whack like that. Not sure what could have caused it, unless it was pushed way in during the original installation or something.

Now we need to talk about your positive terminal on the fusebox there. That bracket just unbolts from the fuse box, and then you can bolt the power wire right to the fuse box. Greatly reduces the chance of that shorting on something, and that's pure unfused power - that can easily cause an electrical fire.

Dale
good spotting on the fuse box thing, ill get that one sorted
and yea it was a reaaallly big leak, lol. I was horrified when I saw the seal..but was also happy that it was obviously my problem.
cheers
96fd3s is offline  
Old 11-22-18, 08:20 PM
  #19  
HamfistRacing.com
iTrader: (5)
 
s1mpsons's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: NYC
Posts: 1,192
Likes: 0
Liked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Can you all elaborate on the blocking of the shaft to limit displacement movement? Would this be a lot easier to do with the transmission dropped? Im considering switching clutch disks anyway for a more progressive bite for prosolo launches (scca autox mixed with drag starts).
s1mpsons is offline  
Old 11-26-18, 11:30 AM
  #20  
RX-7 Bad Ass
iTrader: (52)
 
DaleClark's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: Pensacola, FL
Posts: 11,158
Liked 270 Times in 230 Posts
The stock clutch setup is already pushing forward on the e-shaft.

Is your seal leaking? As stated this is pretty uncommon.

Dale
DaleClark is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Thread Starter
Forum
Replies
Last Post
fastsaab
New Member RX-7 Technical
0
11-13-15 05:33 PM
orange
3rd Generation Specific (1993-2002)
3
11-07-15 10:22 AM


Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Quick Reply: Front main oil seal replacement


Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

© 2019 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands

We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.