Monday, 27 September 2010


Duff injector was actually a broken injector! Then end had fallen off......... I have never seen that before. The little pin end was missing, presumed chucked out the exhaust. To be sure I waved my little magnet on a stick down the spark plug hole and it came out empty. So, spare injector in No5.......... and it still didn't work! I then swapped 5 and 1 over to see if it was injector or poppet valve and they all work now!! No idea, but since its working I'll leave it alone.

We're done and ready for the RBRR on Friday.................... well, nearly. Just got to pack the boot and put in the tools and spares and THEN we're ready!

Had a quick trip to Lynton in North Devon on Sunday evening. Alfie was 9 weeks old and now ready to leave his Mum. So, here he is!! He is little cracker, has no fear of anything and best of all, he and Smartie seem to be getting along really well. Presently, they are both curled up, fast asleep, with Alfie lying ontop of Smartie!!!.............. so cute!

So, wish us luck, I'll report back probably on Monday evening after a few hours well deserved rest and deliver the post RBRR '10 low-down...................!

Saturday, 25 September 2010

RBRR ' 10 prep.... again!

Last full day to get the PI ready for the RBRR on Saturday, but managed to get a head start on Friday night by taking out the diff, replacing the leaking front seal and re-fitting all in one evening. Tough job, hair full of EP90, but it was done.
Sills creaked a bit, but a very large piece of wood as a brace, and it didn't fall off and the doors still open so it must be ok!
 This morning saw a driveway full of Triumphs. Bradley's Red 2500 in the background and Dave Marshall's Saffron 2000 on the right. He needed a bit of help and guidance so we worked on both cars together. Dave's needed a cooling system flush, a few hose clips replacing and an engine mounting sorted. After that a quick check on gearbox oil levels and he was done!

 After the meeting unit was reset, and the broken rack clamp sorted it was time for a but of cleaning. Wash, polish and a good interior valet and it looks excellent and shiney!
 Meanwhile, Dave was puzzled by a spark plug and usually "just wopped them in"......... I had to explain about plug gaps and intervene prior to him fitting them!
 Whilst I was distracted helping Dave, Bradley started polishing the wiper arms........... that boy needs help!
 But, his work did not go un-noticed................ clean PI !!!
 A few stickers later and its almost ready.
 Then a quick trip to Brian's (most of you will recognise this ramp as the one that the V8 Estate is being built on!) as he had the equipment to weld up the huge crack in the stainless exhaust. I can hear myself think now! We thought that was it and we were ready..................

But, on the way home, one injector stopped working and the flasher relay packed up........... more to do tomorrow now!

Sunday, 19 September 2010

RBRR '10 Prep

So, the PI arrived home........... but the engine was in pieces and in the boot. Good start! The head was off and stripped due to excessive valve guide wear and we just didn't have the time to get it done properly. Luckily I had a spare PI head in on the shelf (like you do!) so we decided to bung that on and get it running.
First things first, cleanliness is next to godliness........... well nearly, but it needs to be clean when you're doing a head gasket. The block face was cleaned (yes, I did plug up the cam follower holes first!) then finally cleaned with thinners to get it sparkling.
The head studs were covered in gunk. Quick whizz on the wire wheel in the bench grinder (my favorite toy!) and all is peachy! Please note, all these photo's taken by my able assistant Bradley (also RBRR '10 co-pilot. Greatful thanks for the help, stubby fingers, coffee making, tool fetching, cleaning and of course the odd photo here and there!)
Clean and shiney......... who says I have a problem?!! Anyway, when they are this clean you can just wind them in by hand! Simples!
Also, the head was checked and cleaned up......... although as it turns out, not checked well enough. We don't have photos as it was terminal sense of humour time, but............. once we got the engine assembled and fitted the rocker shaft, it snapped a rocker arm. Caused by the valves which had siezed solid on 5 chambers. So, head off again, valves out, cleaned, de-rusted, lapped in and refitted........ so there was a 24hr time delay between some of these pictures......... but you get the idea!!

Head case or Head gasket? Answer on a postcard too........................

See, they do wind in by hand if they are clean and shiney!! That's my excuse and I'm sticking to it!!

As I mentioned earlier, this is take 2............... after a minor bit of adjustment!

Soon comes together.

I hadn't realised how bold this logo was on the back of my spannering T shirt!! Good quote though!
Finally, its all back together and working. Needed some new throttle return springs, the inlet manifolds were out of alignment so it ran like a pig and only 3 injectors were working, but with a few tweeks and plenty of swearing it ran like a dream!
Moving on to the next weekend.............. had it running for about 30 minutes, retorqued the head, reset the tappents, did and oil and filter change, changed both front wheel bearings, topped up the gearbox and diff oils, greased every nipple I could find (fnarr!), wired in the fogs, re-wired in the spots, put back the battery clamps, air filter housing and strut brace. Meanwhile Bradley handled the important parts. He fitted a stereo and some rear speakers! Top job! Checked to make sure the ipods worked and all is looking rosy for Team 81 on the RBRR!
Just needs a good clean!  So, MOT on Monday evening and then it just needs a tax disc and some miles! It still runs a bit strange, feels very hesitant but I think its just down to the fueling. Checked with Andy Roberts today and I've set the metering unit clearances too tight (only 3 thou out, but that makes all the difference!) so I'll re-do it and if its still not right I may be taking a trip to Reading next Saturday to get it set up by someone who actually knows what he's doing!!!
Needs a pair of wiper blades, and we're going to do a final oil and filter change and put some decent VR1 in before the off next Friday!! (oh, of course, a wash and polish too!, didn't think I'd forget that now did you?!)

Sunday, 5 September 2010

Couple of new additions to the family

Been away for the week on holiday. Started out at Weston Super Mare for the Bank Holiday weekend, then on to North Devon for the rest of the week. Now totally chilled and ready for (almost!) anything. Weston super Mare is/was the home of Atlantic Garages and my new best friend Ian "Del" Lines. I thought I ought to go and find where my car was built. The garage has gone and been replaced by some retirement apartments, but they kept the name "Manilla Place", which is like a small mews off the main Atlantic Road on the seafront in Weston.

You can just see the new buildings in the background behind the red car, the bar on the right is still called Atlantic Bar............. this was where my baby was built!

Whilst in Devon, we found the first of the new additions to our family. Meet Alfie. He's a 6 week old Cocker Spaniel puppy, and he is adorable! He's too young to be taken from his mother at the moment, so we've got to go back to Devon in about 3 weeks to collect him. He will be the ideal playmate for our mad Border Collie and we're hoping it might calm her down a little!!

So, home and unpacked...... time to go and get the 2nd addition. This is the car that I shall be doing the 2010 Round Britain Run in, in 3 weeks time!! Gulp. Engine in bits, singing wheel bearings, no MOT and needs a good going over and service............... this should be fun!

My trusty A frame and the Audi made short work of hauling it the huge 4 miles home, and now its tucked up in the garage awaiting a large delivery of bits!

Latest news on Libby................. bodywork done, due in the paintshop next week!