Over Labor Day weekend 2012, I dropped and re-installed the TDI engine so I could swap transaxles. I had bought a newly rebuilt one from AA Transaxle in Seattle (See Transaxle Transition). This Labor Day weekend (2014), I dropped the engine again to remove that transaxle so I could replace the input shaft seal. In both cases, I leveraged the notes I made in 2011 when I removed and re-installed the fuel tank (see Engine Extraction).
In preparation for the drop, I re-read the notes and realized that I didn't explicitly state whether the bus had to be put on stands for the engine drop. So, I thought I'd try it this time with the bus on the ground. It can be done. Once the engine is down, unless you're going to work on it right there, you still need to lift the bus to get the engine or transaxle out. Admittedly, you only need to jack-up the passenger side so the transaxle can slide out, but still, its worth noting. To get the engine out, it is a big hairy deal.
I am seriously considering changing the rear-end to have a removable valence like the early bay and the split-window buses. Consider, I have a thick steel bar running across the rear from frame-to-frame, holding the engine. This is creating increased stiffness at the rear, which (reportedly) was the motivation to eliminate the removable valence. My thinking is that if I can remove the valence, I could lower and remove the engine/transaxle as one unit without having to lift the bus 3+ feet into the air or parking over a ditch (yes, I did that to install it the first time).
The transaxle is still on the ground in my garage, and the engine is still on the ground (on the ATV jack) under the bus. I have pulled together all the bits and parts I need to fix the leak and re-install, and I hope to start some of that before the weekend. For my own future reference, here are a couple fruitful notes on parts:
The pilot bearing for the KEP flywheel (all 200mm clutch adaptions): '99-'03 VW (Jetta, Golf, Beetle) 1.8 Turbo bearing
The stud / mounting bolts from the transaxle to the adapter are 3/8", standard (not fine) right-hand threaded.
The Circlip which holds the input shaft tight to the reverse gear is part number 004 311 317.
That's it for this time. Hopefully, I'll be able to get under the bus tonight or tomorrow night to get the clutch/pressure plate off so I can seat the pilot bearing. As always, thanks for following along-