This time it’s real, me and Archie are back! So it’s time I got you guys up to date on the latest…
For the most part we have just been enjoying ourselves, apart from the 2 engines.
So since my last posts Archie has had a few unfortunate breakdowns, the first of which was on a 200 mile drive from London to Manchester on the way to a show I was taking part in. I got half way there when things started to go down hill, I noticed smoke coming out the engine bay but stupidly assumed it was just the fact it was raining and the engine would obviously be hot from the long drive. Little did I know It was in fact the engine overheating (what an idiot). I managed to get the whole way to my destination, the next morning I went to start him and give him a little tune up but he wouldn’t start. I went about doing a full tune up and checks, this is when I realised I had no compression. Time to get Archie home.
Archie was dead, and for the first time it was more than just me running out of fuel. I knew I had to either invest in a new engine, sell the car or rebuild the engine, all very daunting and expensive tasks. I went with but a new engine, and so the hunt started.
I searched for 3 months for a new engine, I looked at rebuilt ones, but decided in the end to go with a recently rebuilt second hand unit. Several come up that I missed out on by a few minutes, one a 1800 with twin webers (still think about that engine, oh the power!) and one a 1600 long block. But in the end I found a 1600, turn key with twin webers, I rang the seller and offered him a little under his asking price and it was mine! Then came collecting it from South of the River, luckily I had a van from work that I was using at the time so me and a friend set off the next day after work. The journey went pretty well apart from getting on the Dartford bridge and realising that either of us had any money for the toll! Once I had explained to the toll booth lady and she had taken a copy of my driving licence and given me a bill we were on our way. When we arrived at the sellers garage we was presented with a beautiful looking bay window that the man has just put a 1900 with twin dellorto carbs. We had a little look around that while the seller got the engine I was there to buy set up on the garage floor so I could see/hear it run. The smile on my face when he started it up was huge, it sounded beautiful!
Once I had let it tick over for a few minutes and checked the end float and all that crap it was time to load it in the back of the van. This also went surprisingly well! The seller gave me a hand lifting it into the back of the van, and I strapped it down. That night I stored the engine at a mate’s lockup ready for installation the following weekend!
Now for the removal and install of the engine, this is when things got interesting!
I got really lucky and managed to get access to a bit of land, where I had been storing Archie while he was out of action.
So one Saturday I got a few mates to come round and we started stripping the engine, by this I mean I stripped the engine while they sat there not doing a lot.
After about an hour I had the engine at a point where it just needed the 4 bolts removed and it would be free, well we got it free and then had trouble trying to get it out. You see the jack I was using wouldn’t lift the car high enough to clear the engine, so this is when I get my mates to pull there fingers out and lift the rear of the car high enough to get the engine under. Job done!