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Opinions needed: Temporarily Replace Turbonetics w/ an eBay Turbo

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Old 03-08-2017, 02:08 PM   #1
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Default Opinions needed: Temporarily Replace Turbonetics w/ an eBay Turbo

So my daily's turbonetics turbo has been having some problems and instead of having it rebuilt I'm thinking it would be faster to order a new turbo and take it to my tuner who's only 1 hour away, problem is I'm on a budget and can't afford to buy a new high quality turbo like the one I have.

Does anyone have experience with cheap eBay turbos? Obviously the odds and ends that come with these kits you see are **** and probably break within weeks. I have always steered clear of eBay performance parts but desperate times call for desperate measures I suppose...
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Old 03-08-2017, 02:42 PM   #2
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Default re: Opinions needed: Temporarily Replace Turbonetics w/ an eBay Turbo

Yes. much experience. This is that sore spot of the forced-induction that every so often, someone pulls off the scab to expose the ugliness of this topic ..


1) They have not improved in functionality over the years
2) They have improved in the construction materials of their housings, if you have them made in mass quanity
3) No, it is not worth something to use even temporarily to tune with, as when you get another turbo, you'll simply have to retune anyway
4) No, they are never the configurations that they list that they are. (i.e. a CX-Racing GT3076R, does not have the measurements of the actual GT3076R, so it will not perform like a GT3076R)
5) No, you cannot replace the internals with genuine parts from other companies. They don't cross-reference. And they aren't worth repairing.
6) CX-Racing, Hinmi-Racing, SS Autochrome & their affiliates, count as "eBay" companies.

Be patient, wait, get another one, (or repair this one), and save your several hundred dollars.

Last edited by TheShodan; 03-10-2017 at 06:45 AM. Reason: grammar
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Old 03-08-2017, 03:04 PM   #3
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Default re: Opinions needed: Temporarily Replace Turbonetics w/ an eBay Turbo

I tried one, oil seals went out by the time it was tuned so i would say dont bother
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Old 03-08-2017, 04:23 PM   #4
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Default re: Opinions needed: Temporarily Replace Turbonetics w/ an eBay Turbo

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Originally Posted by TheShodan View Post
Yes. much experience. This is that sore spot of the forced-induction that every so often, someone pulls off the scab to expose the ugliness of this topic ..


1) They have not improved in functionality over the years
2) They have improved in the construction materials of their housings, if you have them made in mass quanity
3) No, it is not worth something to use even temporarily to tune with, as when you get another turbo, you'll simply have to retune anyway
4) No, they are never the configurations that they list that they are. (i.e. a CX-Racing GT3076R, does not have the measurements of the actual GT3076R, so it will not perform like a GT3076R)
5) No, you cannot replace the internals with genuine parts from other companies. They don't cross-reference. And they aren't worth repairing.
6) CX-Racing, Hinmi-Racing, SS Autochrome & thir affiliates, count as "eBay" companies.

Be patient, wait, get another one, (or repair this one), and save your several hundred dollars.
Rebuilding my tga 5454 is the best option I'm sure, I just really need this car on the road since my daily is down now too. I hear lots of bad things about eBay turbo's so I wanted some first hand information.
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Old 03-08-2017, 04:26 PM   #5
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Default re: Opinions needed: Temporarily Replace Turbonetics w/ an eBay Turbo

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Originally Posted by 92_civic_eg View Post
I tried one, oil seals went out by the time it was tuned so i would say dont bother
Hearing things like this is why I have always stayed away from eBay parts. But some people swear they are somewhat durable for the cost.
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Old 03-09-2017, 06:20 AM   #6
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Default re: Opinions needed: Temporarily Replace Turbonetics w/ an eBay Turbo

My standard reply is: If you're going to be buying a turbo on eBay, it had better be a holset and probably nothing else. They're cheap, reliable, and offer high if not top tier performance, at least as far as journal bearing turbos are concerned.

I say weigh your options, if it'll really take that long to get your turbo repaired, then perhaps by a holset and sell your turbonetics. You could always find an exhaust system and retune your car for NA too, while you're sorting out the turbo rebuild.
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Old 03-09-2017, 07:27 AM   #7
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Default re: Opinions needed: Temporarily Replace Turbonetics w/ an eBay Turbo

I've seen them last 20 minutes and I've seen them last 5+ years. It's a crap shoot but what some people won't tell you is that the ones that typically fail immediately are because of install error. Think about the people who would buy a cheap kit to throw on their car, now consider how much mechanical knowledge most of them probably don't have. Anyone who is willing to educate themselves or has been doing this awhile knows to buy quality and get their setup right the first time. If you buy one it's a calculated risk. Be prepared for it to break and if it doesn't then consider it good luck.
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Old 03-09-2017, 07:57 AM   #8
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Default re: Opinions needed: Temporarily Replace Turbonetics w/ an eBay Turbo

I can agree with that statement to a point. The other thing that isn't told is that most of the eBay stuff that lasts a long time are at low boost pressure levels, therefore having lower thrust loads, and doesn't effect the turbocharger, much. Increase those loads, and good-bye to the turbo, and if it fragments, possibly, good bye to the engine too.

If you can't repair, and must replace, then get a good one that mounts up easily. (Holset does NOT mount to your existing hardware easily). Like a Garrett or even another Turbonetics. But, you may have to get the Credit Card out on this one, and pay yourself back later by rebuilding & selling the turbonetics you have..AFTER you've purchased your replacement.
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Old 03-09-2017, 08:16 AM   #9
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Default Re: Opinions needed: Temporarily Replace Turbonetics w/ an eBay Turbo

That's true as well. 99% of the people that buy an eBay turbo aren't going to be pushing the hardware to it's limits. I'm sure if people really started pushing them then the reports of failures would go through the roof. Cheap castings and sub-par materials wouldn't last.
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Old 03-10-2017, 05:29 AM   #10
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Default Re: Opinions needed: Temporarily Replace Turbonetics w/ an eBay Turbo

Buying a knock-off turbocharger for a stand-in while you're Turbonetics is being fixed is just wasting money IMO. If you really need the vehicle, revert back to NA while the turbo is off - its not that hard to replace a header/ manifold.
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Old 03-16-2017, 05:26 PM   #11
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Default Re: Opinions needed: Temporarily Replace Turbonetics w/ an eBay Turbo

Ive seen ebay turbos run good
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Old 03-19-2017, 04:20 PM   #12
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Default Re: Opinions needed: Temporarily Replace Turbonetics w/ an eBay Turbo

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Originally Posted by dual_turbo30 View Post
Ive seen ebay turbos run good
So have a lot of people. And quite a few have seen them "not run good", as well, hence the gamble. Bottom line is they are definitely, absolutely, 100% not as good as getting a "brand name" turbo.
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