She’s In, Mostly

Before getting into the meat of this post, I’d like to preface it with a bit of a disclaimer. Almost everything I write about here is a first, especially at this stage of the build. I am trying to carry out due diligence in terms of how to do things, but there is still a certain amount of learning as part of the process. I write these things, partly for me to look back on and reminisce, and partly to inspire others to do similar. It’s important that the hobby of tinkering live on, our society is slowly but surely embracing throw-away culture, and that’s worrying! Break stuff, fix stuff, tinker, it’s how we learn and grow as people.

I’ll step off my high horse, and get back to mumbling my way through a weekends work.

Following a week in France trying not to break a leg, or tear an ACL, whilst tearing down a mountain on a pair of ski’s, it was back to the task at hand, and that was finally getting the engine back where it belongs. I started by replacing some of the tired looking coolant and vacuum lines which could prove frustrating to access once the engine is back in the bay. I also plugged off some of the redundant coolant lines we don’t need anymore thanks to deleting the heater matrix.

Next job on the list was to fit my ORC 309 flywheel and clutch, I had ordered up some brand new OE flywheel bolts so made use of those. It all went together fairly easily, I didn’t have an alignment tool, but a little Googling revealed that a 15mm long socket with extension did a good job, and so it did.

You’ll notice I also put the dust shield on, I also attached the timing belt side engine mount. This wasn’t without a small amount of drama, as I had forgotten this would be almost impossible with the water pump fitted. I faffed for a little bit, but then realised the quickest way to sort this was to remove the water pump.

After a small amount of jiggling, the gearbox mated up nicely with the engine, popping it into gear, rotating the crankshaft and keeping an eye on the diff confirmed things where moving as you would expect.

With the gearbox and engine mated nicely, I bolted on the last few bits necessary for mounting it all in the engine bay, and we lifted it as high into the air as the crane would allow. This initially proved not quite high enough, but a small/large amount of man power, depending which end of the engine you were stood, was all that was needed for the whole thing to clear the unremovable slam panel, and ready to be lowered down into the bay.

With the engine in place I started running the wiring loom to each sensor, and reattaching it to the starter motor and alternator. I also ran fuel lines, and bolted up the clutch slave cylinder, theoretically I could have tried starting the thing. But it was getting late in the day, and I hadn’t got any oil, or oil filter, etc, etc.

I did find time to mount up the new turbo kit, and play with air filter location. I intend to build an airbox behind the headlight where the old power steering pump would live.

There is one large thing missing from the above photo, a radiator. The simple answer to that, is that it doesn’t fit. The new manifold and turbo are not compatible with my thicker radiator, bum. I knew we would be tight on space, but not to the point where it wouldn’t fit at all. A lot of people fit a smaller radiator from an EG Honda Civic, but they’re almost 30 cm smaller in width. The other option is to go for a custom sized core, and mount it between the lower cross member and slam panel. Perhaps I’ll try a Civic radiator first, and if it’s not sufficient, look to change it.

I’d known for a short amount of time that the main earth from gearbox to chassis was a bit pathetic, so much so, that when previously cranking to build oil pressure I noticed a small amount of smoke coming from it. It turned into one of those things that I’d replace when I got around to it, now seems like a good time, here in all it’s melted glory is what I removed.

And that’s it, she’s in. Time to order some bits and pieces up, and hope they arrive in time for next weekend, when I can hopefully start her up for the first time. Shitting my pants about that one, fingers crossed it all goes OK.


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