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New here with $700 mini s

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  #1  
Old 11-09-2018, 01:36 AM
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New here with $700 mini s

Hi everyone.

Never thought I would be on a Mini Cooper Forum, but here I am. Long story short I got bored a few days ago and went Escalade hunting on insurance action online. Ran across a 2009 Mini Cooper S in Seattle WA. I-buy was $1,125, My highest bid was gonna be $850. I got the car for $700. Fees and all I came out to $958. Got it delivered today and surprised by how small it really is (reminds me of my tiny FRS I had few years ago). Since I did buy this car at an action, it does have issues. I will be honest and say I am not sure how long I'm going to keep it since we have a small baby and need an SUV not a Mini. However, I fell in love with the car and had to buy it. It is a clean title and so far cost me $1,108 that's including shipping.

Issues with the car so far as i can see:

Does not start
Quarter panel messed up
Dings and pushed in sheet metal in places
looks like the car sat somewhere for at least a year without driving
Bald front tires

Anyone know who the former owner is?

Thank you all and I'm sure I'll be here a lot with updates and asking for help and tips to get the car back on the road.






 
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  #2  
Old 11-09-2018, 05:01 AM
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Nice pick amd welcome to the forum...I remember seeing it in the auction lol hauling it to philly would've made it a bad deal for me.
finding the previous owner isnt that easy since most of the time the auction takes ID papers from the cars.
with a clean title no start mini, the first thing you want to do is remove the valve cover and inspect the timing chain. Check all fluids and of course the battery.
keep up posted
 
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Old 11-09-2018, 07:09 AM
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Nice buy. IF all else fails you can double your money or more parting it out.
 
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Old 11-09-2018, 07:41 AM
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At first glance, those are the leather seats that are a nice upgrade, paint doesn’ Appear to be up worn out. I think you have a nice project. Looking forward to the progress.
 
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Old 11-09-2018, 08:44 AM
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I will start working on it tomorrow. Will do a walk around and more pictures and information by making a new thread for its restoration. Thanks for the advice.
 
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Old 11-09-2018, 11:32 AM
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Hi and welcome to NAM!
Congrats on your low priced buy!
Now: Does it turn over and not start? or does it not turn over at all?
 
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Old 11-09-2018, 03:12 PM
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Welcome to NAM and the fun of owning a MINI Cooper.

We put 2 baby/kid car seats in the rear seat of our Cooper, no problem. Just sayin’. Once you get that MINI running you will probably want to keep it.

Couple of things to consider. First, if it has been sitting for a while, have the brake fluid changed. Second, ditch the wheels. They look like 17”. While they may look good, they will ride will be harsh. 16” wheels will ride much better and they go up for sale in the marketplace here on NAM all the time.
 
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Old 11-09-2018, 03:21 PM
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Good luck with the project. If you like it when it is not running, you will love it when you get to drive it. Especially if you have back winding roads where the MINI is at it's best. Small kids fit great in the MINI. From 12 to 14, it gets a little tight for them in the back. From 14 on, they want you to keep it so they can have it when they reach 16, so they stop complaining.
 
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Old 11-09-2018, 05:25 PM
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Congrats and Welcome. I wish you luck as I've found over the years there's always a reason cars end up at the auction and it's usually not good. So for sure inspect everything you can before you try to start it so if it has a major problem starting it doesn't make it worse like a broke timing chain or something. And when you're ready for parts we're happy to help.
 
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Old 11-09-2018, 09:59 PM
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If the timing chain and motor look good, a no start condition on these cars can often be traced to a bad key (if it's no turn over). The immobilizer chip in these keys go bad and the car does not recognize the key, therefore no start. If it's turnover but no start then probably something is wrong with the engine. If it's no turnover then you might need a new key. I recommend MINI of Peabody, they sell all their parts including keys at a discount.

Bruce
 
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Old 11-10-2018, 11:49 PM
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ItsmeWayne I did not try starting the car since the valve cover was not bolted on. When the car got delivered I noticed that the valve cover was just put in place.

My theory on the car: The chain snapped breaking the camshaft pulley off (seems to be the bolt that holds the pulley broke off) see in pictures. Someone took it apart and realized its too much work and left the car sitting for at least a year the way the interior looks.


Eddie07S: We got a little girl 5 months old, not sure how we gonna be putting the car seat in the back for the next few months. Might be a commuter car for work but well see. It does seem like there is a lot of room in the back tho. Wheels I'm not a fan of, the tires are bald so if I find a good deal for tires and wheels I will definitely change them. Rotors seem rusted so might just change rotors and pads all together will all fluids being flushed.

miniCPA: Our daughter is only 5 months old, not sure if we will have the car till she turns 16. We will enjoy it for now tho.

WayMotorWorks: I picked up timing chain kit, water pump, thermostat kit, battery for under $600 all OEM parts from World Pac. Nut not sure if its worth the hassle of fixing or get a new engine or even parting out.


valvashon: Issue is Timing chain, broken camshaft pulley.
 
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Old 11-11-2018, 12:30 AM
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Again Thank you everyone for the Input. As you can see in pictures below when the chain snapped it broke off the bolt holding the pulley to camshaft. Not sure if any damage to valves yet (wont be surprised if there is damage). Question is this: Is it worth fixing or get a new/used engine? New engine is around 2k from what I saw in 10 min online. My material cost would be under $400 (includes head gasket as well) but In this case I also want to change the water pump and the thermostat so it brings my expense price up $700 if I buy all the parts from World Pac (all OEM parts).

Any Ideas please share. I do want to create a new thread for the restoration of the MINI. Once I have more videos and pics.




 
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Old 11-11-2018, 06:20 AM
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What most likely caused the chain to break, was the valves hitting the pistons. The engine may be toast, or at least needing a full rebuild.
Do not try to turn the engine over, until you remove the head!
 
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Old 11-11-2018, 08:52 AM
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We put 2 of our grandkids, when they were less than 1 years old, in a proper rear facing car seat in the back of the Cooper. I think we used a two piece, snap in type. The front seat moves far enough forward to make it reasonable to do. For a while, my wife did this a couple of times a week when she took an older grandchild to pre-K (in a sit-up car seat).

I know, with engine issues to worry about, carting a baby around in a MINI isn’t your first priority for this car. But, I just wanted you to know what can be done, with reasonably effort which is not much different from other cars.

Hope it goes well. It would be nice to see another MINI saved. There are a few threads about doing this. If I find any I have subscribe to, I’ll post a link.
 
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Old 11-11-2018, 09:39 AM
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If you decide to stick with this engine I would recommend the Detroit Tuned Turbo Oil Line Kit. It contains the feed and return lines, gaskets, and the O ring/gasket for the oil filter/heat exchanger base. These will all need to be done eventually so you might as well do it while you have everything apart. I had mine done the same time I replaced the water pump and T stat.
 
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Old 11-11-2018, 08:43 PM
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I would check the vacuum pump. When the rotary vane, the part that creates the vacuum, fails it jams under its carrier and brings the exhaust cam to a screeching halt. The weakest link is the cam sprocket bolt. The end result is what you see in your engine.
 
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Old 11-12-2018, 08:21 AM
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Originally Posted by I like mini clubman's View Post
I would check the vacuum pump. When the rotary vane, the part that creates the vacuum, fails it jams under its carrier and brings the exhaust cam to a screeching halt. The weakest link is the cam sprocket bolt. The end result is what you see in your engine.
Good point. Not one that most think about.

Interesting failsafe mechanism MINI designed in. If you loose the boost for the brakes, they make sure you don’t have an issue with the brakes by blowing up the engine.

BTW - vacuum pump failure can occur with a loss of oil pressure. Need to keep the oil topped off on these engines.
 
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Old 11-12-2018, 09:58 AM
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Nice find, and i agree with eddie. Those vacuum pumps can lock due to oil starvation from a leaky turbo oil lin or heavy oil consumption from a sticky PCV/valve cover and extremely long oil changes.
 
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Old 11-12-2018, 07:27 PM
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Originally Posted by I like mini clubman's View Post
I would check the vacuum pump. When the rotary vane, the part that creates the vacuum, fails it jams under its carrier and brings the exhaust cam to a screeching halt. The weakest link is the cam sprocket bolt. The end result is what you see in your engine.
This is what I would check first. With the exh cam stopping it likely bent a couple valves. But often pulling the head and fixing is pretty cost effective as long as there is no cylinder damage.
 
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Old Yesterday, 06:24 AM
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What Way said.

But first, if you haven’t done it already, I would pull the spark plugs. A lot can be told about the health of the engine and how it has been running by these. If they all look the same and have a gray-brown color to them then your short block (pistons, cylinder walls, etc) have a chance of being ok. Pull the head and look for damage. If one or more of the plugs has oil on it or looks significantly different then you may be looking at more than head damage.
 
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