New member
I've got an 83 with the 1.9 I just did a compression test and discovered I've got a 0psi cylinder. Darn thing starts and idles perfect but I was losing power. I now need to rebuild and I'm new to the waterboxers. What is my best course of action? Subaru transition has been considered but I want opinions for best bang for buck. Can you advise me?


New member
when it comes to the engines, there ae alot of replacements out there, when i was doing mine 6 yrs ago i was in the same boat, which motor??? u can go with a chevy 6 cyl carb motor but i can't find my old links, or the big drop of 11k for a drive in / drive out subie....for $11k.
i went nuts trying and went with a rebuilt 2.1 again, but who??? i talked and asked a lot of people in the vw scene in jersey and it all came back with a boston bob,RIP, engine. due to his passing a way a few yrs ago its hard to find another engine builder like him, his helpers went on and continued on with another company name but are still making thegood rebuilds. My motor has 125,000 plus and is now starting a rear main seal leak, i have to find another motor andwill go with them again, unless i can get a w12 audi motor.....

Jason Rolfe

New member
Depends on what you want out of the engine, I think. If you want performance and speed, go with the Subaru conversion. I drove my friend's van that had one and the thing hauled ass. With that said, I often felt like it had no low end, which was weird when driving the thing loaded down with people, gear, and bikes.

I had the exact same problem as you last year. I ended up going with a rebuilt engine (upgraded to a 2.2). I had it done at my local shop and it came out to 8,000 bucks, with the engine, labor, and some other things that were fixed while they were in there. I went with these guys because they've been doing it for a while and know their stuff, and I had read good things from other people that went through them. I feel like it was totally worth it. I have a great engine that's basically the original, so all my manuals still work for it. I have a good warranty on it. And the boys at the shop treat it like a baby--they put a lot of time and effort into that engine, and they genuinely care about how it's doing.

So, if it were me, I'd go for a rebuild by a shop that has been around and doing that for a while, and that has a good reputation for it.

Good luck. Either way, you're probably going to love driving that thing away with a new engine in it of any type.