Lady Charlotte - 1966 2000SC

Dave3066 said:
Had a bit of a moment in the old girl this morning... Cracked open the points with the ignition on and got a nice spark across the gap - check!. I thought I might as well swap the rotor arm for the spare too and she fired up after that...
Remanufactured rotor arms for our older classic cars are quite unreliable nowadays. They seem to suffer from failure due to a cheaper plastic composition being used. I'm told that the Distributor Doctor rotor arms are made from a much better material than most, and are red in colour(beware of imitations). I have had the rotor arm failure problem on two of my cars.
 

Dave3066

Well-Known Member
testrider said:
Sounds like the electronic ignition kit doesn't it?
I'll be putting it back in at the weekend to see if it is.

LeeEFi said:
Remanufactured rotor arms for our older classic cars are quite unreliable nowadays. They seem to suffer from failure due to a cheaper plastic composition being used. I'm told that the Distributor Doctor rotor arms are made from a much better material than most, and are red in colour(beware of imitations). I have had the rotor arm failure problem on two of my cars.
The spare one I've fitted is on of SimonBBC's red ones. I'll refit the original at the weekend to see if the fault comes back, but if the rotor arm is cold and the fault is heat related (it came at the end...almost.....of a 40 minute journey) I may have to take the car for a run to replicate the fault.

I would imagine it's a pretty hostile environment for these components and my car does get more use than most.

Dave
 

Dave3066

Well-Known Member
Just to follow up on previous posts, the electronic ignition is back in and working fine.

Next job was to investigate a knock from the front end under braking. Sounded like shock bushes so I bought some new poly bushes to fit this weekend. The day started off cold but bright and sunny so I got down to the job. The weather would change later in the day, but I'll get to that.

Old bushes looking very worn




Old next to polybush for comparison



The polybushes were sprayed with GT85 before being pressed into the shocks upper and lower eyes in the vice, with a large socket on the other side. I was concerned about the prospect of having to compress the lower bush on its mount to fit the split pin because these bushes are very stiff, but a little application of hot air softened it up sufficient to compress it. I used a suitable diameter steel pin and ball joint forks to compress the lower bush and that seemed to work well.....




One side done.....then it started snowing and getting pretty wet.



Having done one side I decided to soldier on and get the other side done. All was going really well until it came to fitting the shock back onto the lower mount. As I was compressing the bush, the pin ripped straight through the outer holes in the lower mount rendering it useless :evil: :(

So I have a bit of a dilemma now as I have nothing with which to lever against on the bottom mount. I guess my options are to either weld over the outer holes and redrill, or..........

......any thoughts?

At this stage I decided to stop as the snow was getting pretty heavy and I was drenched. Hopefully it'll be dry tomorrow and I can get back to it.

Dave
 

Dave3066

Well-Known Member
testrider said:
You could temporarily pack it with washers to fill the gap in.
That's not an option at the moment Paul. I can't compress the bush to get access to the inner holes that the split pin goes through and the outer holes are no longer holes because they've ripped right out the end of the bottom mount. I might have to drill a new hole a bit further in so I can at least get a washer and split pin on it, but that will weaken the mount further :? .



The other thought I had was to have a go at cutting a thread on the mount to see if I could get a nut on it. Not sure if I have a die of a suitable size for that though and again it's removing more material and weakening the mount. If push comes to shove I could always weld the washer onto the mount for now until I can fix it properly. Anyone know at what temperature polyurethane melts?

Dave
 

testrider

Active Member
Oh, I see what you mean now. I'm sure all the ones I've see have been solid though.

What about tapping a thread down the centre, screwing a set screw in and cutting the head off? Then you'd have a solid mount to drill the split pin holes through.
 

Dave3066

Well-Known Member
That's a possibility Paul. Need to see if I have a suitable tap and set screw. I think the early cars had these hollow mounts. My V8 has solid mounts.

Dave
 

arthuy

Well-Known Member
I agree with that. Probably the only way to save the existing mount.

Would be worth trying to source a replacement to weld on later.

Colin
 

redrover

Active Member
Dave3066 said:
That's a possibility Paul. Need to see if I have a suitable tap and set screw. I think the early cars had these hollow mounts. My V8 has solid mounts. Dave
Mine has solid mounts as well. Can understand why now I suppose! Tapping seems like a sensible move. Hope you get it sorted!
 

Dave3066

Well-Known Member
Thanks for the suggestions folks. The problem is sorted now :D

It was whilst I was tapping the mount with a 7/16" UNF tap that I had a bit of an epiphany :idea: I thought I might as well just pack the gap with washers and screw a set screw straight into the end. I found a suitable size "bolt", I think it's a seat belt mount bolt, sourced some washers which had an ID of 15mm (that's 19/32" for harvey :) ) and secured it that way.



Probably more secure than a split pin. Lady C's MOT is due at the end of Feb so it'll be interesting to see what my local MOT man makes of this.

Dave
 

testrider

Active Member
Wow, glad that worked. The only reservation I'd have is that it might either unscrew over time or seize in completely, hence my suggestion to cut the head off and redrill the split pin holes.

Dave3066 said:
I think the early cars had these hollow mounts. My V8 has solid mounts.

Dave
I've just check HOT (Feb '67) and that has hollow mounts too.
 

Dave3066

Well-Known Member
testrider said:
Wow, glad that worked. The only reservation I'd have is that it might either unscrew over time or seize in completely, hence my suggestion to cut the head off and redrill the split pin holes.
Yes I'll keep an eye on it to make sure it doesn't do either, then as Colin says I'll eventually get round to replacing both sides with solid mounts. The mount is hollow all the way back into the base unit cavity behind the inner wing so I'm guessing I should be able to manufacture a couple of mounts from a suitable diameter steel rod, drill some holes for the split pins etc and weld them in place. I've not had a look from the other side of where the mount is, but it might be easier to weld a "captive" bolt onto the base unit to replace the lower mount and allow the shock to be secured with a nut at the bottom, as it is at the top.

I wonder if the change from hollow to solid mounts is documented anywhere, including the reasons for it? The engineering reasons are obvious but sometimes these things happen simply because they perhaps ran out of hollow tube when they were making that part of the base unit :?

You never know!

Dave
 

Dave3066

Well-Known Member
Been out servicing Lady C today and replacing a few worn components in time for MOT next week.

There's been a bit of a knock from the front end for quite a while now but it's taken ages for whatever it was to wear out sufficiently for me to identify the problem. As well as knocking there was also a recognisable clunk from the front end on braking. Last weekend I identified a very worn ball joint on the driver's side front lower link strut. Definately an MOT fail so I ordered a pair of link struts to replace both. I always replace both sides when doing suspension components. I ordered the LHS and RHS from different suppliers and there was a fair difference in price. I wonder if RHS components are more scarce than LHS? Anyway, having removed as much of the split pin as I could from the ball joint nut (there was no way it was coming out) I managed to loosen the nut.



Out came the trusty ball joint splitter, I prefer the fork type if I'm not fussed about destroying the joint



The problem with worn ball joints is that if you don't remove the nut completely before splitting the joint the ball rotates in the socket when you try to remove the nut. Leaving the forks in provides sufficient pressure to lock it in place, allowing the nut to be removed. Removal of the old link strut and fitting of the new one is then a straightforward job.

Old and new



The old one has a copper coated ball, the new one does not as it's a later replacement item that fits just fine.



The bush was showing signs of degradation too



New one in place



I also took the chance to refresh some of the underseal around the fixing point as it had flaked off. Replacement of the other side was equally straightforward.

The other part of today's job was a general service, including engine oil and filter change and gearbox oil change. I took her out for a run to warm things up in preparation and was pleased with how much tighter the front end felt after replacing the link struts :D. Lady C has done 65k miles now so whilst I had the sump empty I removed it to gain access to the bottom end of the engine. Given the propensity of 4 cylinder engines to wear out main and big end bearings I thought it high time I at least had a look at Lady C's. The paperwork I have shows no sign of any previous engine work so the chances were the bearings were all original. I removed main caps 2 and 4 to give me an idea of the level of wear and was surprised to find very little to none at all. The same was true of the big end caps I removed.

No2 main bearing



No4 shows a single score down to the copper, but with no corresponding mark on the crank journal



Big ends also show very little signs of wear.




The bearings are all original size so unless they were all replaced before I got the car, they have all done very well. Lady C had around 30k on her when I got her in 2010 and I've put 35k on her since then. I can't imagine why anyone would replace the crank bearings at such a low mileage, unless the engine has been replaced, so why are these bearings in such good condition? Could it be that changing the engine oil and filter every 2500 miles as I do has protected them? If so, does that put the cat among the pigeons in terms of the thinking behind why some 4 cylinder engines seem to go through crank bearings at 50k miles? I'll leave you to ponder that thought while I drink my beer. Suffice to say I won't be checking these again for at least another year :D

Dave
 

harveyp6

Well-Known Member
pat180269 said:
Very interesting that Dave. I'd be interested in Harvey's experience of the bottom end of the 4pots.
I've replaced plenty of sets of shells (normally to quieten down the bottom chain) but I can't say I ever looked at the mileages, and I never experienced lots of problems on cars I regularly looked after.
 

Dave3066

Well-Known Member
Can''t believe it was 3 years ago today that I brought the Lady home. Feels like I've had her for a lot longer than that. She's covered 40k miles in those 3 years. I'll post some then and now pics when I get a chance. The engine bay in particular looked a lot cleaner when I got her. Methinks I have some work to do :shock:

Dave
 
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