Does my engine need aftermarket sleeves? Jay’s Tech Tips #29 I

Does my engine need aftermarket sleeves? Jay’s Tech Tips #29 I

Hi, I’m Jay from Real Street Performance. Today, we’re going to talk about engine sleeves, what different types there are, and why you may want them. So there are 4 common reasons that you would move into an aftermarket sleeve. Power level of the engine. The bore size needed for your build. A material constraint with the factory style sleeve and the aftermarket piston you’re trying to use. Or you damaged the cylinder and you need to replace the sleeve. In the realm of power level, the factory was considering the best balance between heat mitigation and cylinder sealing. They weren’t really considered about what happened to the engine when you doubled or tripled the power level. An aftermarket sleeve is a thicker build of material and the alloy loans itself to keeping shape under elevated combustion. So as you raise the power level with an aftermarket sleeve, the cylinder will stay round. And when you raise the power level with a factory sleeve the cylinder can distort or crack. During the rebuild process, you may want to go to a bigger piston to increase the displacement. Or you have to go to a bigger piston to get the right bore finish back on the cylinder wall for good sealing. Either way the factory block has the limitation of how big it can get before the liner gets too thin. In these types of scenarios, you move to an aftermarket sleeve. There are a handful of engines that don’t work well with the common 2618 aftermarket piston. These engines choose nikasil or FRM bore and the makeup of that bore and the make up of a common forged piston don’t react well. This puts you in a situation where you’re going to sleeve the block. Another reason for going into an aftermarket sleeve is you damaged the cylinder. It’s cracked, or you’ve dropped a valve, or broke a rod and that cylinder no longer has the ability to be fixed. And you have to put an aftermarket sleeve in to use that engine block again. So regardless of the manufacturer there are 2 different types of sleeves. There’s a wet sleeve and a dry sleeve. A wet sleeve, the factory cylinder is totally removed and this sits in its place. So now the water of the engine is directly against the sleeve. A dry sleeve is going to fit inside the factory cylinder. So the factory cylinder stays intact. You bore it out, and you press this in. It’s worth noting that there are a few advantages with a Darton MID sleeve. These sleeves are installed with an o-ring at the bottom. So the sleeve can be removed if needed. If you have a situation where the sleeves are epoxied in. There’s a couple things that are presented. It’s hard to get the sleeve out. So if you drop a valve, and you want to service the engine, getting the sleeve out if it’s epoxied in is going to be a pretty large task. The other thing is when you bolt the head on this, it’s kind of floating in those o-rings. There’s nothing that’s unnaturally loaded in the block. So you have less tendency to develop cracks. This is not a new design. They’ve been doing this in the diesel community for a long, long time. You would just pull the sleeve out when it’s reached its service life, and put another sleeve in. It also locates on the other cylinders in the block which offers some rigidity in the deck area. So overall, this is a pretty nice product. It also does a good job of keeping shape under stress, and has a good memory. This alloy has a good memory to return to size. If you’ve got the engine hot or if you’re overusing it, It’s pretty forgiving material. There are 2 different types of dry sleeves. One is a flanged performance-oriented sleeve and the other one is a non flanged rebuilder style sleeve. So if you’re in a situation where you just need to get back on the road, it’s not something that you’re going to triple or quadruple the horsepower of the engine, you can use the regular service sleeve on. If it’s a performance application, you’re going to use the flanged sleeve. While there are a lot of machine shops that can do this procedure correctly, you should understand that this is not something. that’s very simple. And it’s easy to screw up. Make sure that you’re dealing with a machine shop that has done a lot of this work. And they’re very comfortable doing this work. If you make a mistake during the process, the engine block will end up in the garbage. And you’re going to be out quite a bit of money. So make sure that the machine shop that you pick to do this is capable and comfortable sleeving your block. So in closing, I hope you come away with this with some information that will help you understand what the sleeving process is. What sleeves you should purchase. If there’s something that I covered in here that you still have questions about, you can ask in the comments or email me directly. Thanks. Have a good week

About the Author: Michael Flood


  1. Jay you should have told them when a shop screws your block up they almost always with lie and say you had load shift. Which is them blaming the casting and not there work

  2. @REALSTREETPERFTV "The makeup of a common forged piston don't react well" – Dont F20C and F22C already have forged pistons in stock form?

  3. Hi Jay, you mention that the darton wet sleeves have an o ring at the bottom so they can be removed and reinstalled multiple times, on my engine made by Rover, we also use liners but from factory we have to use a none epoxy sealant, I assume if I decided I want to try the o ring route, I would need to have the sleeves 'step' machined up a little to take the thickness of the crushed o ring as the sleeves have to sit 4 thousands above the block deck so the gasket can seal, im guessing i need to work out how much they will crush as I couldnt just leave them 4 thou above without the head on as they would drop down once the head has been torqued down……………..sorry for the long question, but if you can let me know what you think I would be most grateful. Lee

  4. So if i want to go for an extremely high horsepower 2j or rb, it would be a good idea to use aftermarket sleeves?

  5. so i was going to fully built a d16y8, looking on doubling to tripling my horse power. would sleeving the block be necessary??

  6. Hey Jay,
    in your opinion is there ANY performance benefit to using a rebuilder sleeve material over a cast in place OEM sleeve ? Like in a situation where your bore isn't damaged and seals fine…but going to an aftermarket sleeve that is not flanged…any benefit? Thanks for your help…?

  7. i'd like to know if it is a good idea to replace a factory sleeve from a porsche m96 engine and replace it with one with a thicker wall (keeping the inner diameter stock) i'm not about increasing power but rather about increasing engine reliability since the m96 engines are known for warping. will thicker sleeves prevent that or will they increase the probability of the cylinders getting warped? i'm reading different opinions on that from so called porsche experts and i don't know whom to trust.

  8. does putting dry sleeve in 220 cc bike single cylinder engine will increase its performance

    answer must plzz i m waiting

  9. heeey Jay, i wanted to ask you what did you especificly have to study to obtain this level of knowledg in engines you have? in my country the tipe of thing you do is very rare so i cant get much information. love your videos

  10. i have never had to re sleeve an engine,
    i have seen a jaguar sleeve rust thru from the rotten rusty old anti freeze that rusted thru the sleeve, but never from damage
    and i just rebuilt a mitsubishi evo 7 engine to 650hp and that is on stock sleeves with forged crank rods and pistons running a LINK G4(KIWI made/ made in New Zealand)

  11. I just had a cyl sleeve installed in a 4.6 4v Ford engine in an 03 Mach 1. It was a new block and fully built, forged everything… then the fucking thing hydrolocked at about 1000 miles from a faulty FRPS. Bent a rod and damaged one of the cylinder walls. I'm waiting for the engine to actually get put back in the car, but my question is how reliable can I expect this to be? I'm kind of thinking about just selling the damn thing to be safe, which sucks. I've dumped a lot of money into building it and adding a blower. What should I do, sell or keep?

  12. there is another reason. Engine damage that ruined the original bore beyond safe over bore limits. I have an old Pontiac 421 H.O engine from 1964. Very rare and hard to find especially since its a 4sp code block. Engine sat for many years with water in the bore. Corroded it beyond a +60 over bore. Let alone the +60 on all the holes of a virgin block is a sin. Leaving future rebuilds at resleeving all the holes. +60 is about as far as you can take a Pontiac block. So what do we do? Sleeve the one hole and do a +20 to clean up the whole thing.

  13. hi , i buy h22 darton dry sleeve stock bore 87 mm i need to open the cilinder 88 mm this is safe too boost . i think 20 psi whit 6262 precicion

  14. Hey Jay, If ones installing a sleeve to an open deck block (a FA20 to be precise) what are the tolerances between each sleeves for thermal expansion?

  15. I'm trying to get as close as possible to 300 hp on my GSR…. do I need to sleeve it , what you recommend

  16. O ring with closed deck vs sleeves. If sleeves are better than what would ensure a good gasket seal like o ring does with closed deck. Engine in question: ej257

  17. I just bought the Darton Dry Sleeves (300-012) on your eBay Store and now I’m a little bit worried. I’m about to rebuild my B16A2 engine and I want to keep the standard pistons’ bore (81mm). I don’t want to install oversized pistons (81.25mm or bigger). I already bought the JDM OEM P30 Pistons (81mm). Tell me something… Am I going in the wrong way? (Sorry for my bad english)

  18. questiom: A Cummins 6.7-Liter jas a bore of 4.21
    could i use wet sleeves and 5.9 Liter pistons
    the 5.9 Lirwe Cummins had a bpre of 4.02

  19. Jay ,I have a question, I have a d2 caterpillar 4 cylinder. Wet sleeves engine,cant find question is can you dry sleeve a wet sleeve, sleve has a lot of material. Maybe I could press a dry sleeve in to it after bored.

  20. In the case the cylinder has a crack in it and you need to put an aftermarket sleeve in to use that engine again: is it possible the existing crack in the cylinder wall gets bigger so the block will develop a new leak after a while? I have read this on a a forum and don't know if it's true.

  21. Hi. I have a H22A4 engine in a prelude, and the block have nikasil. The nikasil is very deteriorate and I wonder If i can bore the block so i can fit a bigger piston (20mm) without the need to use a sleeve.

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