Darth gets a new engine
This weekend was going to be a full on engines (note the multiple) out of cars and into other cars session, however I didn’t arrive at Dan’s till Saturday AM, and by that time the rest of the chaps had already got two engines out of the cars (one out of each) and had sat one of the replacement engines into Darth. Darth being a HC estate in matt black and somewhat reminiscent of Darth Vader, hence the name.
So Saturday was just a put all the bits back on the engine and get the car running, the option to leave things as they were was not an option as Darth is Dan’s everyday car. the sun was out, the engine was sat on the engine mounts, just how hard could it be… 10 hours later we managed to fire it up, and at last Dan could relax a bit. I left his house at 8:30 pm after some food and got home by 10:30 pm. For me a nice wee 380 mile round trip 12 hours working on a car and a nice 17 hour day.
Right to the car…
Dan looks a wee bit tired as he was up yesterday working on the car’s, then did a full night shift, and then like a fool stayed up to help us all again. Breakfast was Red-Bull and pain killers!
The head went back on in no time, and everything was good. Note the shiny new exhaust system, right pain in the what not to get any exhaust on a slant four…. silly design, but hey this is Vauxhall.
After some discussion with what to use, on went the cam and carrier housing, they all appeared to know what they were talking about, having not worked with a slant four before it was all very new to me. I did have to use all my force to hold the carrier down whilst the bolts were popped in, once they were in it was easier to tighten them down.
This was about 1pm and Dan was still almost standing, and we managed a smile!
lots of other parts fell into place after lots of studs being swapped about and nuts and bolts found. here is Darth with his new engine all just about ready for us to fire him up.
On went the HT leads, the water hoses for this and that, and finally some oil.
We were all now ready to turn the engine over build up some oil pressure and then fire him up. We turned the key and he turned over very fast and we all felt that was not quiet right? No matter lets fire his up and see what happens. So the LT lead was reconnected and the engine again span but no there was no sign of life at all. For the next 30 minutes or so we looked at sparks, fuel and timing? Everything looked right so we thought hang on a second if its spinning over to easy sounds like its got no compression. So out came the compression tester and right enough it had zero compression, not well. Dan sums up his feelings at this point
Right the penny dropped, after shoving some oil down the bores and repeating the compression test and not seeing any change in the compression, we knew it was the valves, they were not sealing closed correctly. Having taken a standard cam and carrier and fitted it to a long valve head, the valves were not able to close, so off came the carrier and on went the carrier that was was with the head in the first place, a sportier cam than Dan would of liked on a daily basis, but within a while that carrier and cam were on the car and it was time to try again, this time just spinning it over was met with more resistance, compression!
Dan resorted to preying, and was soon greeted with a firing engine!…
It was now 7pm and we were all dead to the world. It was time to pack up for the day get some food and get ready to drive home. Dan is now left with the rear exhaust to fit, the clutch cable and radiator / cooling hoses…. The its tinker and play to get the car set-up, but the hard work was done.