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Monday, May 29, 2017

Triumph Spitfire Engine Rebuild #22 - More Auxiliaries

Continuing on, I installed the intake and exhaust manifolds. The intake manifold I cleaned up with a brass wheel brush on a bench grinder and by hand.

All pretty. Some pitting damage on left. The center hole is for the Smith's (PCV) valve.

I cleaned up the exhaust manifold as good as I could and applied some POR-15 High Temperature Paint. Much like the chassis paint, it came out really good. Unfortunately, due to some significant pitting damage that I didn't previously see towards the bottom that showed itself when I was attempting to mate the manifold to the exhaust piping, I purchased a stainless steel header from Rimmer's during one of their sales and ended up using that instead.

Exhaust and intake manifolds installed.

After that, I moved on to cleaning out and sprucing up the radiator. This is one of the items that I got from a guy in Rhode Island getting out of Triumphs. I'm pretty sure I did a post on that, but cannot find it. Anyway, I'm sure there was some rodent living in it for a while because I must have flushed a pound of acorn husks out of it. But, they all came out and the water eventually ran clean. As with other radiators I've seen, this one had obviously met the fan at some point, but not severely enough to rupture any coils. It wasn't until I took a picture of it that I noticed, however.

The picture where I saw the cooling fan "X". 

Better closeup of the damage.

I took a brass brush to the top, bottom and sides and pressure washed the cooling fins and it cleaned up pretty well. I also bent straight some of the worse of the cooling fins, though I didn't try to get the all. Two coats of the high temperature low-gloss black finished the job.

Post-pressure wash. Some of the original black paint sprayed off. Must have gotten some water on the camera.

Some identifying markers. Pretty cool.

Once cleaned up and painted, I put the radiator in its support bracket and mounted it to the car. The hoses for the cooling circuit were next.

One support bracket.

Cooling hose from water pump through intake manifold.

Lower radiator hose.

Upper radiator hose.

And overflow bottle. Think this is original given the condition it's in.

With the radiator in and sorted, I moved on to refurbishing the prop shaft. I already had new Hardy Spicer u-joints that I got from SpitBits, but it needed more than that.

What I started with.

The nasty, crusty u-joint.

One end of the prop shaft is designed to slide to allow for vehicle flex. In total, it moves about two inches. This is accomplished by an over-designed arrangement of a bearing and capture sleeves. Not really sure how to explain it...I suppose the design has a proper name, but I don't know it. Everything appeared to be okay, but it needed to be cleaned up and re-greased.

Closeup of the sliding part after removal. Luckily I had caught all of the little barrel roller things.

The arrangement, sans barrel rollers. The knurled cap on right screws onto the sliding part on left.

Barrel rollers and sleeves, all cleaned up.

After everything was cleaned up, I applied a good amount of grease and installed the barrel rollers. From what I could find in my research, they are installed in alternating directions, so that's what I did, slowly working them into the sliding, hollow shaft. This was painful as the rollers would fall out of slide around. I kept working at it, though, and eventually got them all in.

Showing the alternating barrel rollers. Note that the top one had fallen out when I took this picture.

Working the sliding part up the shaft, one roller at a time.

With that pain over, I got it primed and painted (high gloss black this time) with my normal two coats of each.

Primed and drying.

All painted and pretty, including the paint run. I taped off the knurled cap and shaft where it slides just in case.

All installed and pretty. Hope it holds up!

After that, I decided to put oil in the motor since there wasn't a whole lot else I could do that night. I had acquired the correct (vented) valve cover cap and got that all cleaned up. The cap vent uses a mesh of what appears to be a horse hair or something organic to prevent oil from escaping and getting all over the place. It looked to be in good shape, so I re-used it. I've heard others use steel wool and I'm sure that would work fine, though I would be concerned for rust.

What the inside of that vented valve cover cap looks like. Just a filtered breather hole.

And, before oil you need an oil filter, so that went on next. I got a Wix 51312 that came with the adapter for about $11 from Amazon that I cross-referenced on the Wix website as correct for the Spitfire. I won't spend that much next time, but I wanted an adapter that I knew worked and this was an easy way to get one that turned out cheaper than getting them separately. Though Wix does have a great reputation, in the future, I'll probably go with whatever Fram filter works as it appears there are several different models to choose from.

Whichever I go with, it is important however that, due to the orientation of the filter (it points down), the filter have an anti-drain valve that prevents the oil from draining out of the filter back to the sump. With the anti-drain valve, most of the oil is retained in the filter and oil pressure is developed quicker since the oil pump doesn't have to refill the oil filter each time.

Wix oil filter that came with the adapter. The grey area behind the six littel holes is actually a rubber flap that acts as the drain preventer.

Oil filter installed. You can see how the oil would drain back to the block without the anti-drain valve.

With the oil filter installed, I put in 4 quarts of Kendall 20W-50 motor oil (I'll do a final check of oil level before and after running it). I got a case from Amazon but it appears as of this writing that they don't sell it in that quantity any longer.

This stuff has the all important ZDDP in it that provides adequate lubrication for the solid, or flat, lifters used in the Spitfire. This stuff used to be in all motor oils but, from what I've learned, it tends to shorten the life of catalytic converters so companies have been slowly phasing it out from "normal" oils. There are several manufacturers that still make this "classic" formula, but it may be difficult to find in you Favorite Local Auto Parts Store (FLAPS).

My oil of choice.

That's it for this post. Except for some odds and ends, there really isn't a whole lot left except for the first run, which you've already seen (if not, visit here). I'll probably do a final catch-all post and almost be caught up to reality!

Monday, May 22, 2017

Triumph Spitfire Engine Rebuild #21 - She's Alive!

Got the motor running yesterday. I broke the tachometer cable (I'm a dork) and have a few things to double-check, but I ran it for about a total of 5 minutes. I think I'm having some fuel pump problems so I have to check that out. But, she ran!! Pretty good I might add, too!

Triumph Spitfire Engine Rebuild #20 - Auxiliaries

Sorry for the long delay again. That time of the year for baseball, bike rides and the rest. Just wish I could enjoy the weather with the top down!

Not a whole lot to this post as most of everything was just bolting stuff up with the proper torque. The one somewhat complicated installation was the distributor. The distributor drive gear end float is important to get right to allow the distributor some "wiggle room" so that is it not hard down on the camshaft gear that drives it. The end float is set with one or more gaskets that go between the block mounting point and the pedestal for the distributor. The workshop manual is clear and spells out how to do this.

Essentially, you obtain a plain washer of a size that will fit in the distributor mounting hole and with an internal diameter that will accept the distributor drive gear. A measurement of the washer's thickness is then made and recorded.

Left over washer from my differential bushing installation. 1.75mm (metric was easier for the math).

With this value know, the washer is set in the distributor mounting hole on the bush.

Washer down in the hole. Again, the distributor bush is installed (I never removed it).

Then, the distributor drive gear and the distributor pedestal (the distributor itself is removed) are installed. Now, using one or more feeler gauges (I had to use three), the gap between the block and the distributor pedestal is measured.

The gap with the washer installed was 1.86 mm. With the washer's thickness at 1.75 mm, the math results in a gap of -0.11 mm (1.75 mm - 1.86 mm). The end float specification is 0.076 mm to 0.178 mm. Since my gap was a negative result, I needed some gasket material to make up the negative and then provide up the the required specification. Therefore, shooting for the middle, I needed gasket material of 0.23 mm (0.l20 mm required plus the 0.11 mm to make up for) to provide the required end float.

My gasket kit came with two gaskets for the distributor that were both too thick. Since this area isn't exposed to any significant oil or oil pressure, the gasket acts more as packing than it acts as gasket. So, I traced and cut a regular grocery paper bag to get my required thickness.

I verified that the motor was still with #1 piston at TDC and installed the distributor drive gear. The motor needs to be rotated a bit to get the drive gear to mesh with both the camshaft and the oil pump, but when it does the gear drops into place. I then dropped in the distributor, ensuring that the rotor lined up with #1 piston per the workshop manual.

Proper orientation of the drive gear for #1 piston at TDC. This pic was take a while after I did this the first time, hence the oil filter.

Orientation of the distributor drive gear from the workshop manual.

With that, I set the distributor into place. I didn't apply Gasgacinch at this point, however, since I need to pull the distributor back out at a future date to allow me to prime the oil pump (more on that in a future post!).

Distributor installed.

Next up was the fuel pump. I had already rebuilt this so it was as simple matter of bolting it up. Not too complicated.

Fuel pump installed. The top is in the wrong orientation as was adjusted for installing the fuel pipes.

After that is was the water pump and water return pipe from the back of the block to the back of the water pump housing.

Water pump, housing and thermostat all installed.

Water return pipe using a compression fitting (a brass olive is used) where it attaches to the water pump housing.

Then the generator was bolted up. Again, just a straight-forward bolt up and belt tension adjustment.

Generator installed.

Other side, showing water return pipe.

That was about as much as I could get bolted up with the motor still on the stand, so it was time to put it on the hoist and get it on the chassis.

I pulled the valve cover to prevent scratching it, tightened down the generator bracket since it provides an engine lifting eye, and transferred the motor to the hoist. Once it was hanging in the air, I bolted up the rear engine plate.

Suspended, rear engine plate installed.

With that, I landed the motor.


Other side. The rear of the motor is supported by a jack stand and the mounts are snug, but not tight.

I next installed the "new" flywheel that accepts the diaphragm clutch and bolted it down and bent over the lock tabs. I put a breaker bar on the crankshaft pully nut and rotate the motor until the breaker bar contacted the frame, preventing further motor rotation. I could then tighten down the flywheel bolts to the proper torque.

Locking tabs bent over. They've seen better days, so I put a bit of Loctite Blue on each bolt as well.

Finally, it was the starter's turn. There are shims that are installed between the starter and the rear engine plate to better align the starter pinion gear with the flywheel. There were no shims when I removed the starter originally so I wanted to see how it lined up. Looking at it, I felt one shim was required, so I fabricated one out of some welding steel and fitted it.

Trace of large aluminum spacer from the starter.

Ugly fabrication.

Mostly cleaned up and primed.

After fitting the starter, I got the gearbox installed, which was a simple bolt up after installing and aligning the clutch. Seriously deficient in pictures there.

Starting to look like a real car!

Next up will be another hodge-podge: radiator, prop shaft and probably a few other things!