View Full Version : Question for you Celica Techers

12-27-2006, 10:40 PM
I was thinking of rebuilding the engine on the All-Trac, I figure spending about $1000-$1500 on a complete rebuild with all new parts, but I can get a JDM motor for about that much with 30k-50k miles.

should I:

rebuild all-trac engine


buy low mile jdm engine

discuss, please state pros n cons if you know of any.

12-27-2006, 10:55 PM
Well considering you don't daily drive the alltrac and you don't need it up and running immediately you can do a rebuild. The thing about rebuilding it is you know it's in good condition when you're done with it unlike a JDM engine which you really don't know about.

12-27-2006, 10:58 PM
Thanks KJ, you are right. I have a DD so the Celica could in theory take as long as I want, although I would want to finish it much quicker and hope to have it done by the end of 2007.

12-27-2006, 11:03 PM
Some people buy the JDM engine and rebuild it themselves. Then again, you're spending anywhere from $1,000-$3,000 or so for an engine with milage that is an estimate. I see more engines on Ebay that have a rough estimate milage of 30-60k than ones that list the milage exactly.

I would vote for buying one from a junk yard and rebuilding it all the way. In that respect, it's probably not going to cost much for an engine from a junk yard, especially since you will have all the other parts with it. If something doesn't work when you get it mounted in the car, THEN you can diagnose and replace. Until then, work with your block and head for a hardcore rebuild.

That's what I'm going to do as soon as I can find a 3SGTE in a yard locally.

12-27-2006, 11:14 PM
I say rebuild IF:
You know what you're doing - there are a lot of pitfalls involved in an engine rebuild that can cost you time and money
You have a good (I mean GOOD) machine shop in town. They are getting harder and harder to find and can make or break your work.

If you're not comfortable doing it yourself and don't have access to the tools you'll need, buy at JDM

The nice thing about rebuilding is the extras you can do - static and dynamic balancing, knife-edging the crank, opening the oil and water passages, all the little things that make a good engine great.

Either way, it's gonna be a fun project!


12-27-2006, 11:33 PM
Are we still talking about rebuilding the ST165 engine that was in the AT when you got it? If so, get a JDM engine, and just do basic tests to make sure it's healthy.

12-27-2006, 11:48 PM
Another option is to get a new short block from Toyota. Major pros with that are that you don't have any questions about the bottom end that even the best rebuilds leave you with. Also keeps the USDM head and emissions parts so you don't have to worry about that (if it's an issue for you at all, some places it matters a lot, others not so much). You wouldn't have to rewire anything, which is a pro of the rebuild too of course, but I would trust a new short block to give you a good long service life. I wish I had faith in rebuilds, but I really don't think much of them vs. the new short block. Short term, the new bottom end is more expensive, but it can pay for itself down the road.

12-28-2006, 12:57 AM
jdm motor... this has been discussed like 1010101010 times

12-28-2006, 03:30 AM
if it is the 165 engine do not rebuild that, get the 185 (2gen 3sgte) engine jdm or usdm and rebuild that

or even the 3 or 4 gen 3sgte there was both on ebay starting at 2500.00 with tranny and other stuff

12-28-2006, 08:33 AM
Having done both, I personally would go the JDM route.

12-28-2006, 12:41 PM
rebuild it u know what your gettin into!!

12-28-2006, 02:11 PM
Ciento, the 165 motor has been sold and I now have a year correct 2nd Gen 3sgte w/9 bolt head.

thanks everybody with the replies.

ChrisD why would you go JDM having done both?

BurnyD why not rebuild it?

12-28-2006, 09:57 PM
depends really. i would rebuild it if your into keepin your car numbers worthy. JDM import is good if your swaping. You have the block already, so i guess do your thing and start there.

12-29-2006, 05:40 AM
If you're going to rebuild it, build it with forged pistons and maybe even get it sleeved, if you don't want to take it that far then I'd personally go with the JDM engine.

12-29-2006, 11:57 AM
If time and money were not a constraint, I would rebuild as then I could add stronger and better internals (forgies, blueprinting, overboring, perhaps stroking to 2.2L etc... ).

With a drop-in swap, you haven't really improved anything, and you'll end up like me with a lot of expensive repairs despite having a "new" engine...

12-29-2006, 01:15 PM
^And that sux!

12-29-2006, 03:10 PM
:stupid: which is exactly why if you aren't going to upgrade pistons etc. I would get a brand new shortblock. I would only buy a JDM engine if I needed to do a swap into a car that didn't already have that engine type, 5s-3s, 7m-1j etc. IMO just rebuilding the motor with no upgrades is like rebuilding a CT26 to stock specs. Dropping in another used JDM one is like tossing in a used CT.

12-29-2006, 11:55 PM
A rebuild is only as good as the person doing it.

12-30-2006, 12:58 AM
Rebuild is also only as good as the parts and machine work involved.

Id go with a JDM engine unless youre building a strong motor for a purpose. Otherwise Id almost guarantee you will be more reliable with a JDM motor.

12-30-2006, 01:09 AM
Find a 2nd gen JDM 3SGTE, this way you are getting a lower km transmission AND engine, plus a ceramic turbo for quicker spoolin and more power..

Go JDM Tyte Yo~