|From RX7 for Sale|
Sadly, my Turbo II is now for sale, along with all the RX7 bits i have accumulated over the years
Bought a 2nd gen with broken engine, taken the roof and some bits, now breaking the rest
Pics from work on welding my turbo II (pictures here)
My Rx-8 stuff is now on a seperate page - click here! to get there.
This club now covers all rotary powered vehicles, from Norton bikes to the Rx8. Don't be put off by the appearance of the forum which suggests that the primary focus is on Rx8s, actually most of the members seem to have 3rd gens.
New limited edition Rx7 Type R Bathurst R
This is an animation showing how the rotor in the
wankel engine moves as it operates. The Mazda Rx7 is
powered by one of these remarkable engines.
My mailing list has been lost with a server move, and given the level of activity, it doesn't seem there is any point in re-instating it.
link to List of members cars
N.B. Neither the list nor this page have any official connetcion with the UK owner's club.
The Rx7 celebrated it's 21st birthday in 1999. Although the rotary engine has a poor reputation, this really belongs to the NSU, where the engine design was originally used. I have read of engines needing to be re-built every 10,000 miles because the rotor tip-seals failed. With the engines Mazda built into the Rx7s and modern lubricants, as much as 200,000 miles between re-builds is not uncommon (with plenty of TLC!). Ceramic tip seals are now available
A realistic life-span to budget for is probably closer to 80,000-100,000 miles between re-builds. Due to the low number of moving parts within the engine (oil pumps, crank, two rotors and 6 tip seals) it isn't hard to see why reliability should be pretty good. Yes, you may see piston engines regularly reaching 200,000 miles (with 3 new timing belts), but they are unlikely to be high performance engines.
There are differing opinions on the pros and cons of using synthetic oils in a rotary. Synthetic oil is not officialy reccomended by Mazda, and has been blamed for o-ring seal shrinkage (causing oil seepage from between rotor housing and end-plates) and residue buildup on the rotors, causing carbon lock. There seems very little benefit in using synthetics in a non-turbo Rx7 because the oil doesn't get much abuse (provided you have a real oil cooler, not the tiny oil to water cooler fitted under the oil filter on some models). The engine bearings are about 2" in diameter, and will stand up to almost anything. My turbo II runs on non synthetic 15W-40, and has about 50,000 miles on it's 2nd engine.
The biggest threat to the rotary engine is probably carbon deposits within the combustion chambers. If the deposits build sufficiently that a sizeable chunk can come loose it can jam between rotor and housing, destroying the engine. The best way to prevent this is to regularly exersise the engine. Beware the cars advertised as 'never taken over 4000 rpm, never raced' etc. It really isn't good for them. Neither is pushing the engine too hard when it's cold. They warm up quickley though, and should then be allowed to rev freeley. The wankel engine is and always will be a racing engine. Do watch out for overheating though - this is really bad news for an engine made from alternating aluminium and cast iron plates. My 1st gen would run a little warm at 90mph on a hot day, but the Turbo II refuses to overheat, except on the track.
Oil useage depends on model and driving style A small pump at the front of the engine meters oil into the inlet manifold to provide lubrication of the rotor and tip seals. This is necessary because the side oil seals are very effective. A piston engine consumes oil in the same by leakage past piston rings and down valve guides. My 1st gen uses maybe 0.5 litres in 6000 miles, the Turbo II uses about twice this.
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