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657 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi All,

Sorry this is a long post :)

I have posted this on the main B5 discussion board but as some of you may not visit there i have copied it to the European board.

Anyone who's been reading my postings recently will know that i have been on a mission to try and find some replacement turbo hoses for my 98 AEB 1.8T.

The search for info
I thought about trying the Audi A4 set, due to it having the same engine configeration as the B5, so i posted a question on the forum about it and also emailed a few companies here in the Uk, them being Forge, Amd motorsports and Samco themselves, the replies were mixed, Forge dodnt know if they would fit but would be happy to supply me some to try and if they didnt fit they would take them back but they would have to be ordered in and it can take about 6 weeks, Amd were showing the A4 hoses on their website as direct fit for the B5 but were not in stock and Samco did not know if they fitted but were going to try them on a passat at a dealers in a couple of weeks. Wow i thought it was a good result until i posted my findings on the forum and was enlightened as to the continuing saga with Samco and Forge and that the 6 weeks and 2 weeks answers are the standard answer some of the members of the forum have been getting for the last 2 years & that there was a problem with the DV fitting on the A4 hoses.

The mission
Well i didnt want to give up and just fork out for another set of OE hoses (was replacing due to damage on 1 hose and chipped the car) , so i thought lets call Samco's bluff and instead of them going to a dealers to try the hoses out (the standard 2 week answer) i actually offered the use of my car for them to test the fitting, to which they agreed was a good idea and asked for my location, i told them where i lived and they said it was a long way (in Uk terms) from them (180 miles) as they were near Cardiff in South Wales and i was in Nottingham in the north Midlands, So i weighed up how much it would cost me in fuel for the round trip and told them as long as they knocked the cost of my fuel off the cost of the hoses if they fitted then i would drive down to them, well they came back with an even better offer, but more of that later.

The Trip

So i arranged to visit them this friday just gone.

0740hrs i set off from nottingham
1020hrs and 177miles (37.8mpg) traveled i arrived at Silflex (who) in Pontyclun, South Wales, yes Silflex is the main company that makes all the commercial hoses from lorries and buses to medical hoses, Samco is the motorsports side.

So i was met by Anthony who does nothing but the Samco side of things, i was shown where to take my car, popped the hood so it had time to cool a bit and was asked if i would like a tour of the factory while the car cooled down.

The Tour

So while we walk to the back of the factory i am given a few bits of info like they produce all the Samco hoses for the world from this one factory in wales, every hose is handmade (wow i thought it was all computer controlled stuff), they make the OEM hoses for Ferrari (but you would probably never know that as they are not branded with Samco's name) and a heap of other manufacturers, they do all the hoses for HKS of Japan, Subaru's sti branch, Prodrive subaru's world rally team, Cosworth and on and on (so many i cant remember) and as they are all hand made each type of hose for each vehicle has to have what is called a tool (mould) made up, this is basically a metal version of the dimensions and shapes of the OEM hose some of those tools were as big as your leg, they have in excess of 15,000 different tools.

So stage one was the silicone, this comes in in large blocks and its consistency is just like plastacine or play doh or raw pastry, in all the different colours that Samco use, this is then fed into what i can only describe as a very large pasta machine, where it is rolled out to whatever thickness they require, during this process it is also bonded to a polyester material (Nomex for higher temp requirements) that gives the silicone some strength and is given a plastic backing so that it does not stick together. There were 3 of these machines. Behind that was racks and racks of the rolled out silicone waiting for the next stage.

A job sheet is produced for what ever type of hose is required, this shows information of which tool is needed and also how many and what size pieces of silicone sheeting is needed, this is passed to the cutters who cut all the pieces of silicone out, once complete this is then passed onto the assemblers.

The assemblers just work at a bench with a vice, they have to wrap the tool with the various different layers of silicone sheeting, this is then wrapped with a tape (just looks like sellotape), that keeps the silicone in place and also gives it it shine, once complete these are then placed in an oven to bake, when finished they are allowed to cool and then the hose is taken off the tool by compressed air and brute force, it is then placed in the oven again to finish off. a few of the guys doing the assembling had different coloured t-shirts on to the others, these were the more experienced assemblers that do the difficult (expensive) more skilled parts.

The hoses are then passed to quality control, where they are checked and trimmed up and matched up to the stock of OEM hoses they have.

The hoses are then passed to the packers, who give the hoses a final clean, package them up and store them in the stock room ready to be shipped to their authorised distributors around the world (they are not drop shippers as someone has suggested on the forum before).

They have a full test facility onsite (apparently the only hose manufacturers that do), where they can test burst pressures, effects of engine oils/chemicals on the hoses, simulate the hose being used on vehicles for 100's of thousands of miles, one hose was being subjected to a heat of 100'c (approx 240'f) and being pulsed with a pressure of 60 psi (4 bar).

The test fitting

So anyway on with the fitting, Anthony basically brought round a few boxes of different sets of hoses for the Audi A4 and Golf.

So we found the hose from the airbox to the turbo was the same as one off a golf and the 4 other hoses were the same as the A4 apart from the bottom turbo hose which was the same as the B6 bottom turbo hose, where the DV mounting is, for some strange reason the A4 bottom hose instead of it having a short hose and then fit the DV and then have a hose from the DV upto the airbox hose, this actually had a long hose from the DV outlet of the bottom hose that let the DV connect straight onto the airbox hose.
So the only hose that they need a tool making for is the hose from the DV upto the airbox hose, which is good news as its alot cheaper and quicker. So now they know the dimensions Anthony is going to get a trial set of hoses made up, with an estimated hose for the DV to airbox (i will send my OE hose to them so they can make an exact copy and then they send the correct part to me), they will then be sent to me to fit to my car, if everything fits ok, hey presto the kit is ready for manufacturing (no more excuses), if not then i need to measure any adjustments that need making, they will then do this untill i get a perfect fitting kit.


So i will keep you posted when the hoses arrive and post some pic's.

Well for the UK and Euro B5 that is, as i believe the US spec B5 has a couple of hoses that are slightly different.


What i need is for one of you (basically the first to PM me for my address in the UK) to get hold of a set of turbo hoses for the US spec 1.8T B5 and if the B5.5 is any different then a set of those too (can be a different person) and ship them to me, maybe a set you had to replace, or you know someone who replaced the OE set when they fitted an FMIC, or a set from a breakers yard etc etc, as long as they are intact and not overly damaged.
You need the following hoses:
from the airbox to the turbo
The bottom turbo hose from turbo to front pipe with the DV outlet
Hose from DV to airbox
Hose from front pipe to intercooler
And hose from intercooler to throttlebody

You would also need to include what engine code and year B5 the hoses are from.

You would then need to ship these to me so that i can then pass them onto Anthony at Samco so that any adjustments can be made for the US spec kit.

HEY but what do i get out of it you ask.

Well i have been told i can offer you the same deal as me.

Samco would make up a set of trial hoses in any colour out of their range you want, they will ship the hoses out to you (no customs charge as they would be a gift) to try out the fitting of, which should be spot on due to them working off the hoses you send me, if not then they would make adjustments untill you were happy with the fit, AND you get to keep the hoses for free which would probably be worth in the region of at least $350-400 with the airbox to turbo hose. So the only cost to you would be your initial shipping fee for sending the hoses to me), you can't ask more than that can you.

I will post a seperate thread on this on the forum as well incase you guy's don't read this one all the way through.


Well i had a good drive there and back, i learn't a lot, especially with how complex the procedure is of making them by hand and have hopefully helped all the B5er's out with getting a kit into production, oh and i will be the proud owner of the first Samco Hoses B5 specific turbo replacement hose kit in the world.

When i have had my kit and everything is ok and hopefully i have had a response from one if not a couple of you lot to get the US spec kit up and running and i can find out a firm production date/schedule i will try and sort out a group buy price.

Sorry for the long post :D :) :lol:

657 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I have a few official pictures of some of the procedures that go into building the hoses, not as many as i hoped but due to company secrets and competitors trying to copy their designs, this is all i can get.

Picture of a Typical Tool (mould) that they start with:

Pictures of the silicone sheeting being wrapped around the Tool:

Picture of the tape they use for creating the shiny finish of the hoses:

Picture of the hose just before it goes in the oven:

Picture of a cross section of finished hose, that shows the complete bonding they get once its been cooked in an oven, you could never guess it started off as a sheet of silicone:

Sorry i couldnt get anymore.


I have been informed that the order has been raised for the production of my trial kit!!!

I have also asked as regards the group buy, just waiting for some details now about how we go about it.



657 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·

If you want more updates on this, then please read my post in the main general discussion board of the clubb5 forum (it is a sticky post at the top of the list), no one seems interested on the europe forum, so i have stopped including updates, but the Americans are very interested.
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