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This topic contains 114 replies, has 15 voices, and was last updated by  pmossberg 5 years ago.

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  • #235340

    edsnova
    Participant

    @edsnova

    As promised. Here we go.

    As you know I’ve been scrambling to get B ready for the Lime Rock Historic Festival, which starts Friday. I’ve taken her on a few short jaunts, including on Saturday a 20-minute highway run to the Hunt Valley Horsepower show, and she did well enough. I was worried about a tendency to heat up just a bit and the fact that she stopped charging the battery on the way home–or at any rate the volt gauge read that way.
    With cosmetic necessities also taking priority over the rest of the weekend–I need some sort of front trunk to be restored for carry-on–I made a list of things to do during the week. And one of them was checking on the cooling system.
    I noticed my little nub of top rad hose was bulging–like the clamp wasn’t on straight. Finally took it off and
    Put a new piece in–carefully. That should be OK. Don’t know if that was my problem Saturday–or even part of my problem–but it sure wasn’t part of my solution.
    One thing I have been meaning to do is check all the CV joint bolts to make sure they’re torqued to 25 ft-lbs like the book says. Last I remember, I set them gentle-tight to tow the car to the muffler shop. And like I said, I’ve banged the gears a few times since then and…
    See that there bolt head? That’s how I found it–on the passenger side. 
    I tightened them all–they were all loose. Replaced one that I had striped out back when i took it apart in November. Managed to get the torque wrench on only a couple but looks like I got a bit more–not too much more!–than 25 pounds on all of ’em.
    So now that I probably won’t lose the axles at speed or blow off the top rad hose, I’m feeling a little better about going after my fake side curtain cover/engine hider project.
    More on that–and new insulation–later in the week.

    edsnova2014-08-25 21:56:53

    #261078

    bdriver
    Participant

    @bdriver

    Ed,

     

    I could torque the CV joints back in the day by jacking up the car. That allowed the axle to drop enough to allow me to torque the top bolt on the inboard CV joint. I rotated the wheel to put each bolt at the top in succession. Keeping the wheel from rotating while I torqued the bolts required a lot of up and down if I used the parking brake for each bolt. I wound up using my leg under the wheel.

     

    Your description of the voltmeter sounds like normal step down behavior by the regulator as the battery approaches a full charge. 14.5v is normal for charge voltage after you start the car. 12v is normal for a maintenance charge when you are running down the road with nothing drawing voltage but the engine. Step on the brakes or turn on the lights when the voltmeter reads 12v. If it jumps back to 14v you are watching the voltage regulator do its job.

     

    Peter

     
    #261079

    edsnova
    Participant

    @edsnova

    Took Bridget to work again today and had no real problem (other than the throttle sticking a bit at 2000 rpm)*

    She stalled a couple times though and made me wonder if my home-made Vehicle Speed Sensor (AKA “Wheel O’ death”) was not doing the job as advertised. Recall, the people who don’t use a VSS in their Soob swaps sometimes report a stalling problem, usually when rolling to a stoplight or something. My exact symptom.
    So I resolved to put the code reader on her when I got home.
    Then, just as I pull into the driveway
    damn oil gauge leaks again. AGAIN! 
    So I change into shop clothes and go out to the garage. I get the gauge out and look for my 9mm wrench to tighten the pressure fitting on the cap tube. I find every size wrench except the 9mm. End up, an hour later, lining my 3/8 with aluminum tape to make it close to right. That works.
    I cut away a bit of the little leather wear patch I installed on my carpet (you guessed it, I made that to match what a TD would have there). The leather I used, from a cheap Chinese jacket my sister bought me years ago, is Franken-sewed from scraps. One seam was hanging the roller up at 2000rpm. Cut that out and greased the cable and the tube for good measure.
    Started her up and revved. 

    Now the go pedal seems to work right. 
    No oil drips.
    Let her idle down and put the code reader on:
    Will test-drive tomorrow and see if maybe the rev hangup was making the computer a little crazy and causing the stalling. 
    Then i got into my front compartment. Cut a piece of carpet for the floor, found some washers to hold it down (since it’s now pressurized by the radiator and fan), and got a bonus: Found I could stow the jack below it, along the false floor of the chamber containing my fuel pump. Seems to fit perfect and, with the floor of the “trunk” screwed down tight, should not be able to move.
    I’ll test that tomorrow too, and probably fix up some guides on the underside of the floor to makse sure the jack doesn’t wander off.
    Now need to make a proper British tool roll for her…
    #261080

    edsnova
    Participant

    @edsnova

    Saga continues.

    Got the oil thing squared but realized this a.m. that I had unhooked my battery before putting the code reader on last night. So the codes were cleared and the no-code was false.
    Drove her around this a.m. and found I had the throttle-sticking issue licked but noticed that the car still stalls when coming up to a light. This happens if you downshift and then get off the gas and put in the clutch. if you blip the throttle she doesn’t stall.
    The symptom is exactly what the guys with no speed sensor (wheel o’ death) report.
    Plugged in the reader and got:
    They are:
    0133 Oxygen sensor slow response. 
    1702 TRS Circuit intermittant problem. The innerwebs tell me that’s an engine speed sensor problem
    Engine speed sensor?
    0141 – this is the rear O2 sensor heater. This indicates that either the sensor is bad ($30 part) or–and I’m guessing–the exhaust leak I hear is right about just before the sensor, and it’s maybe cooling it and screwing with the reading. Either way that’s messing with the computer and giving me the bad mileage.
    I do believe the TRS might be the root of the stalling issue. But wtf? I mean, what even IS that?
    Would have been so much better to see the P0500 code for VSS, since i know right where that thing is and maybe even how to fix. But no.
    She ran otherwise ok but once again on the way home, late in the drive, the charging system seemed to be fading. I got 12 volts, plus or minus, with the lights on (minus with the brakes applied). When I got in the garage I noticed she was showing les than 12, lights on or off, and I got the indicator light glowing. 
    damndest thing, eh? 
    Guessing she’s a problem with my ground wire on the light. SHould be able to trace it down in short time.
    Trouble is, I’m basically out of time. So looking like I tow to Lime Rock, not drive.

    edsnova2014-08-27 21:26:41

    #261081

    jebarry
    Participant

    @jebarry

    that’s a nice varnish job Ed

    #261082

    edsnova
    Participant

    @edsnova

    Thanks, John.

    So I tightened the nut holding the wire on the top of the alternator. It was loose.
    That didn’t work.
    Before driving home from work today I tightened the belt a little.
    Not sure if that worked or not. On the way home she charged good for about 7 miles, then stopped for about two, then started again, then stopped again, letting her drop into discharge (sub 12-volt) territory before bucking back up to like 12.3 as I pulled into the garage.
    The sun was low in the sky so i dunno if the idiot light flared this time or not.
    I also adjusted the clutch a little as it was grabbing too low after she warmed up. Now it’s real nice and silk-smooth.
    Passenger valve cover seems to be leaking worse than before. Definitely need to carry extra oil for now.
    Temp gauge seems right. Oil pressure is good.
    Stalling problem persists.
    Heading to the muffler shop tomorrow a.m. to fix the exhaust leak.
    After that heading to CT. Looks like we’ll be flat-towing this time.
    #261083

    edsnova
    Participant

    @edsnova

    One step forward, two steps back.

    Got my snaps on my engien cover/fake side curtain box done last night, thanks to Karen’s skills with the sewing machine.
    Headed back to the muffler shop this morning for what I thought was an exhaust leak.
    When I got there, she was leaking something else:
    Thought it was that little elbow hose; tightened the clamp and put a little more antifreeze in and bled the valve.
    She kept leaking–now out of the front cover.
    I thought maybe head gasket. One of the mechanics walking by said “water pump.” 
    It’s brand new, I said. And it’s on the other side of the engine. He said it could be a bad one or installer error. There’s a weep line in it that extends over the to left bank. he was pretty confident.
    So that means I will not be driving Bridget to Lime Rock. And I will not be towing her to Connecticut this weekend. 
    Plans are set though. I wonder if they’ll let me park my Nissan Frontier in the British car corral.

    #261084

    royal
    Participant

    @royal

    Ed, is “engien” German speak?

    #261085

    edsnova
    Participant

    @edsnova

    Kicking myself on this one, boys.

    So I got back into Bridget today. Pulled off the rear body work, the cam covers, dug out the water pump.

    It’s totally fine. No sign of a leak anywhere on or in it. The bearing is smooth, the seal seems fine.
    Pondered it a while and then decided to trace back the coolant leak from the drip.
    It was the elbow hose after all. It has split under the clamp and was wicking water onto the front engine cover. I could have seen this–and fixed it–last Friday if i’d had the smarts and ambition. 
    The mechanic said “water pump” with such conviction I thought he must be right.
    So, while I’m in here… replaced the leaky front main seal and ordered the cam seals, as the passenger side seems to be weeping a little. Getting a new water pump gasket as well and a new hose for underneath it–I hope. The top hose is a cut piece so for $14 I bought a new hose with three or four 90-degree bends so I’ll have spares for a while. 
    Got a gallon of antifreeze and a quart of oil. Ordered new valve cover gaskets as well so i can try to fix that passenger side leak.
    With any luck she should be back together by tomorrow.

    edsnova2014-09-03 17:59:13

    #261086

    billnparts
    Participant

    @billnparts

    It’s the little things that’ll drive you crazy !!

    Bill Ascheman
    Fiberfab Ford
    Modified 5.0, 5sp., 4:11
    Autocross & Hillclimb
    "Drive Happy"

    #261087

    ray10
    Participant

    @ray10

    BILL IT’S THE LITTLE THINGS AND WAITING FOR THE PARTS TO SHOW UP . (:

    TDREPLICA Map

    http://www.arcgis.com/home/webmap/viewer.html?webmap=7f9174ad614e43b680deba085b0abf48

    #261088

    edsnova
    Participant

    @edsnova

    Update:

    Changed out the main seal, the oil pump gasket and O-ring, both front cam seals (including the o-ring on the passenger side), the passenger valve cover gasket* and the water pump gasket. Also the tiny heater hose that goes to the water pump just above the thermostat–$14 from the dealership.
    I have a new thermostat gasket too. And a new top hose. 
    Had to put the timing belt on twice. First time it was perfect, but then I tried to tighten the cam sprocket bolts and I made the belt jump three cogs on the crank so I had to do it again.
    Left her with the front timing cover off. Cuz I’m tired.
    Tomorrow I’ll button her up, clamp the hoses on, tighten the alternator belt and put some coolant in her. Hopefully she’s fixed and I’ll be able to go for a ride.
    *Actually did not replace the valve cover gasket, as it is basically new and undamaged. So what I did–because it was leaking for some damn fool reason, was augment it with a bead of Permatex red. That should either cure it or kill it, and at this point I can hardly care which.

    edsnova2014-09-04 20:25:05

    #261089

    jebarry
    Participant

    @jebarry

    Thumbs Up

    #261090

    edsnova
    Participant

    @edsnova

    So the good news first: I drove Bridget 50 miles to my wife’s boss’s house last night. She ran pretty sweet. I had just washed her–finally–and folded the windshield down. At one point a kid in a newish (2013?) Mustang GT rolled up alongside me and nodded his head. I nodded mine and he opened up. (whuh??) So I did the same. He had the jump on me but I did not lose ground until we were over 80mph, at which time I backed off.

    Out of the toll gate a couple miles later he wound it up through second and third; I hustled through second and half of third (80, again) and he could not pull away. Ha! Not bad.
    The bad news: On the way home she over heated. Got over 212F coming out of the hilly, windy country road from Karen’s boss’s neighborhood. It was the same symptom people report: She’s fine for a while then the temp goes up, then it goes down, then it goes up higher, then, if you are paying attention, you turn it off. We were about 15 miles from the boss’s house when I started smelling anti-freeze and pulled into Calvert Manor, an old folks home. What luck!
    The old people were grouped out in folding chairs listening to a folk music concert. A younger dude (like my age) came wandering over and asked if he could help. I told him what was up and introduced my wife, who had been following behind me in her Toyota (as she had gone to the boss house straight from work).
    I left Bridget there and Karen drove me home, where I got the truck and the tow bar. Back through the toll, back to Calvert Manor, hooked her up and dragged her home by 11 p.m.
    As breakdown/strandings go, it was about the best case scenario one could hope for.
    But I think I need to face the fact. Bridget has a blown head gasket. I’m starting to think it’s been that way since I started her that first time, if not when I got the engine.
    The same thing happens. 
    1. She is hard to fill with coolant. I fill from the top, open all the bleeders and get nice flow from all of them, but there always seems to be another bubble. [This is because the hot exhaust gases that are leaking past the head gasket are making new bubbles].
    2. She’s good for short trips [it’s a small leak and the Stop Leak I put in her on the first coolant fillup probably minimized it further]
    3. Took all day yesterday to get the system squared up [did not replace the stop leak until about the third overboil, and then only put a little in, after which a five-mile run, then the 50 mile run, proved OK and stable–or so I wanted to believe]
    4. Back when I was making the fan shroud I saw bubbles blowing in my overflow bottle. I took video of this. It was like one per second-and-a-half with the engine idling, and it went on for a while. That should have told me what was up. 
    I didn’t want to believe it. I didn’t want to do the work, or spend the money on parts. 
    But even when I got the engine, I should have known. I was looking for leaky coolant or a sweet exhaust smell, which she doesn’t have. The car I pulled it from has no brakes, so their was no test drive to stress the engine. I bet a test drive would have shown the problem right then–and I would not have bought the car…
    Anyway. Bill was right all along. I should have done the head gaskets when I had the engine out, just because. It would have hurt just the once. Now I get to pull her all apart and do it all anyway.
    There does seem to be a little other good news though.
    The new seals seem to have put a stop to the oil leaks that plagued her. 
    I guess I’ll probably do the rear main when i pull the block anyway. What the hell, right?

    edsnova2014-09-06 09:00:00

    #261091

    royal
    Participant

    @royal

    Ed, 1/2 of 3rd @ 80mph? What gearbox do you have and what is your redline?

    #261092

    edsnova
    Participant

    @edsnova

    Roy, The transaxle is a 1973 Bug with a 3.44 ring and pinion. Third is 1.26 and 4th is the standard .93. Redline is probably 6500 though I was never anywhere near that. Top HP in the stock motor is supposed to come around 6000.

    3000 rpm in 4th shows 70 mph right now. It is very hard not to do 80 on the highway.
    RPM = mph x drive ratio x 336/ tire diameter in inches
    Wheels, tires are stockish Bug, 165/80/15, for a diameter of 25.4 inches. [[that’s 6.5 inches diameter x .8 aspect ratio x 2 +15 inch wheels). Call it 25 even for simple math.
    3rd is 1.26 x the 3.44 R&P= 4.33 to one drive ratio
    so in 3rd gear at 5000 RPM (“half of 3rd,” since you shift up at like 6k and it drops her to like 3800 or 4000 or something) Bridget can (once repaired) do
    5000 = X x 4.33 x 336 /25 
    4.33 x 336 /25 =58
    5000/58=86.2
    so 5000 rpm = 86 x 4.33 x 336/25? CHECK
    So if I got her to 5000 in 3rd I was doing 86 mph. I don’t think I got her to 5000 in 3rd though. Probably more like 47-4800, which would have been around 82 mph.
    Less than half of third gear.
    I have little doubt that the car could carry third gear past 6000 rpm. At that point I would be doing 103 mph. So–and again, contingent on my repairing the head gaskets–Bridget will run out of speedometer before she runs out of 3rd gear.

    edsnova2014-09-06 11:57:01

    #261093

    pmossberg
    Keymaster

    @pmossberg

    Holy crap! 😮

    Ed, have you upgraded the brakes?
    I really hope there are now disks all the way around.

    Paul Mossberg
    Former Owner of a 1981 Classic Roadsters Ltd. Duchess (VW)
    2005 Intermeccanica Roadster

    If you own a TDr and are not in the Registry, please go to http://tdreplica.com/forums/topic/mg-td-replica-registry/ and register (you need to copy and paste the link)

    #261094

    edsnova
    Participant

    @edsnova

    Not yet. 

    I’ll get to it though, and soon. Gotta order head gaskets tomorrow and look for a machine shop to mill the heads.
    I’ll pull the engine…maybe not this week though. Need to travel next weekend to Buffalo to move the mother in law. 
    Next weekend after that I can pull the engine.
    This is not looking good for VA Beach….
    #261095

    billnparts
    Participant

    @billnparts

    At one shop I worked, I had a tech who could yank the engine, reseal it(heads off, oil & water pumps, timing components) and have it back in the car and back to the customer in one eight hour day. He was amazing.
    We have a month till VA Beach. Go for it.

    Bill Ascheman
    Fiberfab Ford
    Modified 5.0, 5sp., 4:11
    Autocross & Hillclimb
    "Drive Happy"

    #261096

    happyjack
    Participant

    @happyjack

    Ed,

    You gotta try to get ‘er done in time for Va Beach — We have a responsibility to run down the TARMAC side-by-side — until one of us pulls away, which if you are doing 80 in 1/2 of 3rd will probably be you……….??????
    Seriously, I’m looking forward to see Bridgett in the flesh……
    Jack 

    Happy Jack
    "EMMA" Red BCW TDr on 1971 VW w/ rebuilt 1641cc
    Dual Kadron, mild street SCAT cam and lifters Hide away exhaust and headers
    "MANYPENNY" White CMC TDr '78 Ford Pinto components w/ 1988 Mustang II 4 cyl w/ Weber

    #261097

    nobody
    Participant

    @nobody

    Oi, that must be fun to drive. I peak out at around 85 with my little VW engine… 

    #261098

    pmossberg
    Keymaster

    @pmossberg

    Just remember Jack, the tarmac at the air museum is grass. 😉

    Paul Mossberg
    Former Owner of a 1981 Classic Roadsters Ltd. Duchess (VW)
    2005 Intermeccanica Roadster

    If you own a TDr and are not in the Registry, please go to http://tdreplica.com/forums/topic/mg-td-replica-registry/ and register (you need to copy and paste the link)

    #261099

    happyjack
    Participant

    @happyjack

    Yea, Paul — so it will have to either be a 1/4 mile drag race on grass at the Museum or we will have to go down Virginia Beach Blvd after posting lookouts at the start and end of the course — don’t need VA Beach’s finest flashing blue lights at us…….  80 in 1/2 of 3rd gear?????  WOW  Probably does Wheelies in 1st if Ed tries hard…….

    Happy Jack
    "EMMA" Red BCW TDr on 1971 VW w/ rebuilt 1641cc
    Dual Kadron, mild street SCAT cam and lifters Hide away exhaust and headers
    "MANYPENNY" White CMC TDr '78 Ford Pinto components w/ 1988 Mustang II 4 cyl w/ Weber

    #261100

    bdriver
    Participant

    @bdriver

    Back in the day we found a slightly more legal way to prove who’s car was fastest. We lined up one behind the other. The passenger in the front car was the starter. If the car in front could pull away it was the fastest. If it couldn’t shake the car behind it you switched places and did it again. If the constabulary noticed you at least one of you wasn’t running down the wrong lane.

    #261101

    edsnova
    Participant

    @edsnova

    Spent a couple hours today on Project Bridget. First I got a block test to try to determine if or how much exhaust gas I had in the cooling system. The test was indeterminate. Twice I got the tester on the rad cap and pumped the ball, twice anti-freeze gurgled up into the tester before it could change color. On the second run the thing was breathing in without my having to squeeze the ball though, and the blue fluid seemed to be turning clear (maybe on its way to yellow), so I am pretty sure there is exhaust getting in there.

    Same thing as before, by the way: there is always a bubble under the high-side engine bleeder. I bled the system again before driving B over to the Auto Zone to buy the block tester (figured what the hey? The test needs to be done warm, it’s not a long trip. And SUCH A NICE DAY.)
    That trip went fine, according to the temp gauge. But on return I opened that low bleeder and it hissed at me again. No coolant at all there.
    So I’ve probably driven Bridget her last this season. Jack, I know, I know. But I’m being realistic here. The machine shop is has two guys out with trouble so I’m unlikely to get the heads back by Friday. Hoping like hell they’ll be with me by the following Friday, Oct. 3. That could, theoretically, allow me to get the engine buttoned-up and back in the car as of Oct. 5, but I am not expecting an easy ride any more for anything on this car. Too many disappointments. 
    Got the car drained. Oil and coolant both look fine, as is the usual scenario with these cars when they blow head gaskets. Pulled all the body work off the back and pulled my exhaust system out. I’ll replace the rear O2 sensor while I’m at it. 
    Got all the hoses off and started unplugging the wires. It was 6:30 pm by then and so I called it a day.
    Tomorrow I hope to have the engine out and the heads removed so I can take them in for machining Monday a.m.
    Wish me luck.
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