Ok, so thanks to Mike at Infamous Performance & Tuning (great guy , if you ever have a chance to visit him), I found out I have oil leaking from the band clamp holding the CHRA to the turbine housing. He thinks I've got a leaky oil seal from too much heat, and I'd tend to agree with him.
He pulled the banjo bolt and it was pretty clogged up. It had actually busted through the screen on one side! (see pic below) Maybe that busted screen saved my turbo, maybe not. It sounds fine (no dentist drill, no marbles in a blender), but we didn't pull the DP to check for play in the shaft.
I'm trying to keep my cost low, so I'd like to go for a rebuild. Searching around the forums, some people don't seem to think there's much use to rebuilding the VF40, but I'd like to do it. Sure, a BNR 16G is only $725, but then I have to do the oil system upgrades and a tune, which adds to the bill from there.
So, to make a long story longer, I've found a few rebuilders online, and most of them SEEM to have their sh*t together, but I wanted to see if anybody had any experience or opinions on these guys:
>This place looks promising, and pretty cheap too. They seem to know what they're talking about and have a 1 year warranty. The only big problem I see is in the warranty section I found this under Warranty Voiding Modifications:
"-Any turbocharger found to be overheated due to lack, or total absence, or water cooling of the bearing housing. This only applies to water cooled AND oil lubricated turbochargers. Any turbocharger means to be use with water cooling should be used as such. If such methods is not available please revise your turbocharger choice."
The VF40 is oil cooled... WTF?
>These guys are more expensive ($500), but they replace the entire CHRA and have a 2 year warranty.
Something I just ran across. I can't tell how long the warranty lasts, but they also seem to know what they're doing. Also, just an interesting point, they sell a complete CHRA for $375 on this page: http://www.xsboostturbochargers.com/...ihi-vf40-chra/
These guys make me a little nervous because their site says they're the "only shop in the USA who can properly rebuild and VSR cartridge balance ball bearing turbos". As far as I can tell, that's just a lie...
I was just wondering if you guys had any opinions on any of these places, or any other guidance you can give me.
I look forward to hearing from everybody!