Itinerant Air-Cooled Greetings From Florida XLIX

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Amskeptic
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Itinerant Air-Cooled Greetings From Florida XLIX

Post by Amskeptic » Mon May 01, 2017 9:48 pm

. . . that's "49" in Arabic numerals. For all of you who follow the Itinerary schedule, I have a bunch of "Done!"s piling up before the main lap. All of these Done!s were accompanied by Chloe's recently rebuilt engine sitting on the floor of NaranjaWesty with my toolbox stationed on top of the sink (!), in a most crowded interior.

We did Tynes Stringfellow in Alabama on April 18th, a nice late model Westy sitting on a concrete slab in the middle of an organic blueberry farm that would not start until we got the fundamentals squared away. Unfortunately, the engine was not putting out much once it did run, and it had some questionably high compression readings (161 psi in #4?) that precluded any efforts to utilize a bump in timing. He is already pondering a replacement engine so he can get out there and hit the road.

Drove back to Pensacola for a very brief very painful interlude with NaranjaWesty's steering lock that had surrepticiously decided not to work all of a sudden. I couldashouldawoulda let it go, just let it go, but no, the garage had a radio and I had a stubborn streak:

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Used a quicky diamond point chisel to whack the tamper-proof screw a good one, then tapped in one of those square bits driven by a 1/4" socket into the diamond pointed screw head, came out easy:

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Here is just before irritable hell broke loose. I drilled the ignition housing as per Bentley:

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My little coat hanger wire found the spring-loaded release for the lock cylinder, but that little bugger absolutely refused to leave the housing. Things got pretty ugly, the hole tore oval, the spring-loaded release got bent, and I accidentally drilled right through the housing, and still . . . that lock cylinder would not leave. Somewhere in this exertion, the dead bolt sprang free. A little judicious lubrication, and it's back, ready for another forty years.

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Thus "repaired", I did not need to torment the lock cylinder any more. No, now it was time for the bus to torment me:
a) the washer switch hoses couldn't figure out which quadrant of the plastic steering column surround they wanted to emerge from. That was three or so r & r & r & r's.
b) the wiper/turn signal switch wiring decided to "de-laminate" from the long plastic wire holder that has to be stuffed down aforementioned plastic steering column surround, and this dis-indexed the wires' orientation to the connector that is supposed to plug into the plastic wire holder when everything is assembled. The new Bentley had lousy diagrams with missing wire colors on the poorly printed pages, and it took forever to get it straight and plugged in.
c) most heinous to my failing mental health, the four small long screws that hold the switches in the aforementioned plastic steering column surrounded ignition lock cylinder would only accept three screws but never the fourth. No matter the orientation of the last screw I would try to start, it would not. I had to disassemble the whole mess back down to see WHY these screws refused to start, of course the de-laminating wires in the plastic holder jumped the hell back out of order at the very first chance they got.

You know why the switches only wanted three screws but not four? Because when I was hauling off on that damn spring-loaded lock cylinder release, I must have bent one of the pot metal "ears" that take the screws when I was desperately trying to hold the thing secure in a vise. That's why. I had to guess-bend one of the four ears to some guesstimate of trueness, then reassemble the whole wiring/plastic surround/washer switch 'n'hoses all back together again to see how I did. Horrid. But the steering lock works.

Took off for Flagler Beach FL to visit with my fellow New Yorker, wdollie6 and his hurricane-avoiding Super Beetle convertible. You might not believe this, but this visit was the first time I have seen Atlantic ocean breakers since high school:

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I am sure that everybody in this ugly building enjoys their view of the beautiful beach and ocean, but what about us at the beach or in the ocean?

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At wdollie6's charming beach house, still standing, we worked on the thankfully-never-flooded bug. Here's a new no-name tie rod end with 60 miles on it. The boot was toasted. The threads were toasted:

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Here is a 60 mile no-name wheel cylinder, leaking brake fluid:

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I stuck in a new tie rod end and we "honed" the wheel cylinder and the brakes do work and the car does steer.

Took Chloe's engine for a ride up to Jacksonville next. Poor thing belongs in an engine compartment but here it is sitting forlornly on the floor while we all wonder how the balance is going to be, how the cam gear is going to be, how the valve seat inserts are going to be, and whether or not the exhaust guide boss is going to crack any further.
(to be cont)
BobD - 1978 Bus . . . . . . . . . . .111,130 miles
Chloe - 1970 bus . . . . . . . . . . . 206,787 miles
Naranja - 1977 Westfalia . . . . . 94,615 miles
Pluck - 1973 Squareback . . . . . 55,510 miles
Alexus - 1991 Lexus LS400 . . . 72,990 miles

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Re: Itinerant Air-Cooled Greetings From Florida XLIX

Post by Bleyseng » Tue May 02, 2017 7:05 am

Atleast you have good weather, sunshine and ocean views to enjoy! I was in St Augustine and Orlando two weeks ago for a week to get some sunshine plus visit friends.
Geoff
77 Sage Green Westy- CS 2.0L-160,000 miles
70 Ghia vert, black, stock 1600SP,- 139,000 miles,
76 914 2.1L-Nepal Orange- 160,000+ miles
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Re: Itinerant Air-Cooled Greetings From Florida XLIX

Post by hambone » Tue May 02, 2017 2:32 pm

Sounds like a typical VW-hell repair. Why do we do this again? :pirate:
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Re: Itinerant Air-Cooled Greetings From Florida XLIX

Post by Amskeptic » Thu May 04, 2017 7:26 am

Next up, Chloe's engine and I visited Filthy Dub in Jacksonville. We took out his engine to replace the front main seal and drop the end play down, back into "acceptable" range. We were visited by ABusNamedSweetPea (Jared) and do you suppose we put him to work? Yes, we put him to work. Alas, at the end of the day, we still had a magnificent oil leak. I suspect the cam plug, which was a weird one that missed the cam plug groove all together. It was not a rubber one, either. More alarming was his steering that had a nasty bang/crunch as we loaded it up. A new steering box is in the forecast.

ABusNamedSweetPea and I had an appointment the next day. It was to have been a simple tune-up. Ha
Right off the bat, while the coffee was still hot, we discovered that his starter had given it up.

Starter A came from AutoZone and it's overrunning clutch housing just behind the pinion slammed into the pressure plate bolts when you attempted to start. It got gouged up pretty good. Returned for refund.

Starter B came from some Hilltop VW forty minutes away. It's pinion wouldn't even reach the flywheel, so it spun uselessly. Expensive little bugger, its claim to fame was that it was a self-supporting reduction gear starter. We called them, "huh, must have given you the wrong one." I grabbed the phone and suggested strongly that they look up the correct application and provide a proper starter and an adjustment to the price. ABusNamedSweetPea returned an hour and a half later with a garden variety usual old starter that somehow was as expensive as the fancy self-supporting reduction gear starter. "He gave me a $20.00 credit for gas." Can you believe it??

While ABusNamedSweetPea was driving around, I desperately tried to provide value to the day by adjusting brakes and clutch and lubricating the sliding door and inspecting the bus. Discovered that the underside of the car had a bondo tumor of startling proportion under the oddly shaped left rear wheel well and a rusted out front beam underneath the thin application of undercoating. Oy, the seller from Lawrenceville Georgia must have celebrated when he saw the bus drive away.

We barely got in a valve adjustment /timing check /big-ass EMPI dual carburetor synchronization /fuel mixture adjustment. All that enthusiasm in ABusNamedSweetPea is going to be put to the test as he works through this list of issues.

Drove west away from the Atlantic wondering how we are going to keep these cars going as the knowledge base seemingly continues to shrivel and the cars continue to age and the ethically-challenged sellers continue to foist their offerings on the unsuspecting.

Yeah, so me and Chloe Engine drove to Atlanta to get it installed. I was NOT going to ask my brother to help me THIS time, because last time he heaved the jack and toppled the engine right off the damn jack and onto the pavement. Collared a poor guy just putting away his real estate signs at his storage unit.
"Can you help me just a sec?"
"Ah gee, I have to get back to the office."
"It'll be just a sec."
"Naah, I really got to get going."
"It'll take just a second, OK a minute."
"What do you need help with?"
"Just help me get an engine out of that orange thing."
"Oh no, I rea . . . "
"Come on over."
. . . and he and I lifted Chloe's poor engine out of Naranja and gently set it on the plywood balancing on my jack. It took all of ten seconds. So we had time to chat now, 50 gloriously relieved seconds for the real estate guy.
"Ha ha, I thought you wanted me to TAKE OUT the engine in the camper, and I was like, are you kidding? but this was easy, I had no idea you could just PICK UP AN ENGINE and set it on a jack, say that thing is beautiful, these things are all beautiful, what do you do?"

Got the engine installed in barely an hour, no bumper though, just in case the cam gear ate itself or something dreadful:

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Engine started right up, oil light went out lickety split, and I think it was as tired of riding around in NaranjaWesty as I was of it riding around in NaranjaWesty. The test drive was of course, nerve-wracking as hell. The clutch was chattery as it took up, the vibration was noticeable as the engine revved through the 1,500 rpm area. It was surprisingly peppy in the lower rpms, and the CHTs were barely 320* under load. Unlike any of my factory build engines, I could hear the case taking the load under acceleration and singing nicely only while coasting. I'd say it is equivalent to a factory engine at 60,000 to 80,000 miles. Oh well. I at least now know every single part in that engine, and I know the case fasteners are all tightened to torque, and boy you cannot hear that camshaft mesh, no sirree.

Did a valve adjustment (all fine) and an extended freeway drive up GA 400 the next morning. Hit 60-65 just fine and CHTs even with new rings and tight engine never got above 340*. I decided to imagine that the engine actually smooths out at 3,500-4,000 rpm. Performed the fourth oil change in barely two hours of run time, oil was dark with brass sparkles from the distributor gear, but no weird chunks of aluminum cam gear teeth. Compression test showed that the re-seat of the exhaust valve insert affected the combustion chamber volumes. 110 / 107 / 100 / 112 and are all pretty low compared to the original Chloe compression range of 140-145. This is because I put in dished pistons. I like low compression for my kind of highway hell driving, but we'll see if these come up a little as the rings fully seat.

And I ponder mightily if Chloe's engine is ready for the big time 2017 Itinerary . . .
Colin

Image
BobD - 1978 Bus . . . . . . . . . . .111,130 miles
Chloe - 1970 bus . . . . . . . . . . . 206,787 miles
Naranja - 1977 Westfalia . . . . . 94,615 miles
Pluck - 1973 Squareback . . . . . 55,510 miles
Alexus - 1991 Lexus LS400 . . . 72,990 miles

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Re: Itinerant Air-Cooled Greetings From Florida XLIX

Post by Bleyseng » Thu May 04, 2017 7:42 am

Amskeptic wrote:
Thu May 04, 2017 7:26 am


Drove west away from the Atlantic wondering how we are going to keep these cars going as the knowledge base seemingly continues to shrivel and the cars continue to age and the ethically-challenged sellers continue to foist their offerings on the unsuspecting.
Colin
Now that VW's are a Hot Collector car the ethically challenged sellers come out of the woodwork. They find a deal and then take it to a cheapo flyby night repair shop to get it good enough to sell to a unsuspecting buyer (like Cynthia) for stupid money. A good pre-inspection by a VW shop will help to stop this but in lots of areas there aren't any VW shops that work on these collected cars. Plus to repair/restore one is stupid money. I just finished rebuilding/restoring the whole suspension on my Ghia which cost approx $2000 with the frame/alignment work and parts. How many people are willing to do that to get a car driving like new again? You drove it last year so if you come out to Seattle you have to drive it again to feel the difference.
Buyers are more concerned about small easy to see things like a seat tear or a wrinkled door panel while the front beam is rusted out under all that undercoating.
Geoff
77 Sage Green Westy- CS 2.0L-160,000 miles
70 Ghia vert, black, stock 1600SP,- 139,000 miles,
76 914 2.1L-Nepal Orange- 160,000+ miles
http://bleysengaway.blogspot.com/

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Re: Itinerant Air-Cooled Greetings From Florida XLIX

Post by sgkent » Thu May 04, 2017 9:42 am

Bleyseng wrote:
Thu May 04, 2017 7:42 am
Amskeptic wrote:
Thu May 04, 2017 7:26 am


Drove back to Pensacola wondering how we are going to keep these cars going as the knowledge base seemingly continues to shrivel and the cars continue to age and the ethically-challenged sellers continue to foist their offerings on the unsuspecting.
Colin
Now that VW's are a Hot Collector car the ethically challenged sellers come out of the woodwork. They find a deal and then take it to a cheapo flyby night repair shop to get it good enough to sell to a unsuspecting buyer (like Cynthia) for stupid money. A good pre-inspection by a VW shop will help to stop this but in lots of areas there aren't any VW shops that work on these collected cars. Plus to repair/restore one is stupid money. I just finished rebuilding/restoring the whole suspension on my Ghia which cost approx $2000 with the frame/alignment work and parts. How many people are willing to do that to get a car driving like new again? You drove it last year so if you come out to Seattle you have to drive it again to feel the difference.
Buyers are more concerned about small easy to see things like a seat tear or a wrinkled door panel while the front beam is rusted out under all that undercoating.
Hence why it costs so much and takes so much time to get it right. We should create a certification for restored VW's where a group of unbiased but knowledgeable folks get together, and score a VW as to quality of the restoration etc.
Thank You -

Merlin The Wrench

Machine Work/Shop Recommendations: http://kentcomputer.com/77VW/machinework.pdf

Pointers on rebuilding an engine: http://kentcomputer.com/77VW/rebuilding_a_vw_engine.pdf

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Re: Itinerant Air-Cooled Greetings From Florida XLIX

Post by Amskeptic » Sun May 07, 2017 10:13 am

Three Days Before Launch. Chloe's engine is coming back out. Report Later.
BobD - 1978 Bus . . . . . . . . . . .111,130 miles
Chloe - 1970 bus . . . . . . . . . . . 206,787 miles
Naranja - 1977 Westfalia . . . . . 94,615 miles
Pluck - 1973 Squareback . . . . . 55,510 miles
Alexus - 1991 Lexus LS400 . . . 72,990 miles

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Re: Itinerant Air-Cooled Greetings From Florida XLIX

Post by sgkent » Mon May 08, 2017 10:56 am

is this another all day to go 20 miles, and up all night situation? What can I do to help?
Thank You -

Merlin The Wrench

Machine Work/Shop Recommendations: http://kentcomputer.com/77VW/machinework.pdf

Pointers on rebuilding an engine: http://kentcomputer.com/77VW/rebuilding_a_vw_engine.pdf

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Re: Itinerant Air-Cooled Greetings From Florida XLIX

Post by Amskeptic » Mon May 08, 2017 11:28 am

sgkent wrote:
Mon May 08, 2017 10:56 am
is this another all day to go 20 miles, and up all night situation? What can I do to help?


This is another AirCooled.Net suspect parts situation. I have a brand new flywheel, brand new clutch disk, brand new pressure plate, and a wicked clutch chatter both upshifting and down-shifting.

I have a new super Bowden Tube sag for experimental purposes, no help. Main seal et. al. are drydrydry, the engine and nose mounts are still good but that could change with this violent shaking. WTH??
Colin
BobD - 1978 Bus . . . . . . . . . . .111,130 miles
Chloe - 1970 bus . . . . . . . . . . . 206,787 miles
Naranja - 1977 Westfalia . . . . . 94,615 miles
Pluck - 1973 Squareback . . . . . 55,510 miles
Alexus - 1991 Lexus LS400 . . . 72,990 miles

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Re: Itinerant Air-Cooled Greetings From Florida XLIX

Post by sgkent » Mon May 08, 2017 11:33 am

look at the disk and see if it has spots on it that might indicate it is warped. Are there any signs of oil mist on the plate or flywheel? Also make sure the disk slides on the input shaft and that it is not binding.

Take the base off the dial indicator stand, Use a bolt to bolt it to the case. I bolt it to one of the top case to trans bolt holes. Set the dial indicator tip up on the flywheel with a little angle so it doesn't chatter. With the flywheel all the way in or out, spin it slowly to see if there is excessive runout.
Thank You -

Merlin The Wrench

Machine Work/Shop Recommendations: http://kentcomputer.com/77VW/machinework.pdf

Pointers on rebuilding an engine: http://kentcomputer.com/77VW/rebuilding_a_vw_engine.pdf

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Re: Itinerant Air-Cooled Greetings From Florida XLIX

Post by asiab3 » Mon May 08, 2017 3:31 pm

Ouch. The grease tracks on this disc were from over-zealous pilot bearing packing, I suspect. You wouldn't believe how much this thing chattered……

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I think I stacked five washers into the bowden tube mount before I agreed to help pull the engine…

Robbie
1969 bus, "Buddy."
100k miles with me.
279k miles on Earth.

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Re: Itinerant Air-Cooled Greetings From Florida XLIX

Post by sgkent » Mon May 08, 2017 3:38 pm

over zealous and worn out felt on the bearing on that one Asiab3.
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Merlin The Wrench

Machine Work/Shop Recommendations: http://kentcomputer.com/77VW/machinework.pdf

Pointers on rebuilding an engine: http://kentcomputer.com/77VW/rebuilding_a_vw_engine.pdf

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Re: Itinerant Air-Cooled Greetings From Florida XLIX

Post by asiab3 » Mon May 08, 2017 4:34 pm

sgkent wrote:
Mon May 08, 2017 3:38 pm
over zealous and worn out felt on the bearing on that one Asiab3.
The pilot bearing was brand new, so I'm assuming the felt was too. :drunken:
1969 bus, "Buddy."
100k miles with me.
279k miles on Earth.

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Re: Itinerant Air-Cooled Greetings From Florida XLIX

Post by SlowLane » Wed May 10, 2017 8:17 am

The quality of pressure plates seems to have gone down the crapper lately. Last one I dove into was to help a young friend with his super beetle. The diaphragm spring in the pressure plate had gone lop-sided, and was so weak that I could depress it easily with one thumb. It wasn't that old, but had been installed by a shop who clearly didn't give a hoot.
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Re: Itinerant Air-Cooled Greetings From Florida XLIX

Post by sgkent » Wed May 10, 2017 8:53 am

sometimes mechanics in a hurry will ram down bolts one at a time all the way going around the disk 1 time. That warps the heck out of the diaphragm spring(s). The proper way is to use the input tool to hold the disk centered then turn a bolt in until a little tension is felt then tighten the opposing one a little, and then going round and round a few turns at a time in a cross pattern until the plate bottoms to keep the spring(s) from being overly stressed on one side vs the other - all the time trying to keep the diaphragm evenly tensioned. It is kinda like that one thread we read once a year where someone new says they were loosening or tightening a rocker arm shaft one side first all the way then the other, and the shaft snapped in half.
Thank You -

Merlin The Wrench

Machine Work/Shop Recommendations: http://kentcomputer.com/77VW/machinework.pdf

Pointers on rebuilding an engine: http://kentcomputer.com/77VW/rebuilding_a_vw_engine.pdf

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