Saturday, 9 January 2016

Milestone 2 - Engine in

Busy day today...

I had planned to bolt the gearbox to the engine and then install but I couldn't get the gearbox into gear,  which I needed to do to make sure I could rotate the shaft and help it slot into the engine. So,  I fitted the quickshift:

But this meant I wouldn't be able to get the engine and gearbox in in one go. Yes,  I could take the quickshift off again but I don't like too many things off and on.   Not a big issue but meant the gearbox had to go in first.  With the help of a chum (thanks Dave) it was easier than I expected,  although we did have to take it out to hacksaw off a couple of pieces off the bell housing.  They weren't really in the way but just looked to be too close to the tunnel panels and it was only a 10 minute job.

Dowels in,  shaft greased,  it was time for the big moment - the engine.

I moved one axle stand to be in the middle of the car and removed the other one,  to allow the engine crane to fit under the car,  with its legs straddling the axle stand. My garage has a one inch drop down to a sloping,  gravel driveway -  not ideal for a stand and why I never planned or needed to get the car onto its wheels and push it out the garage. With the stand and engine halfway out of the garage,  we pushed it sideways and swung the engine over the bay:

Then pushed forward and slowly lowered. To get the mounts in, Dave pulled the engine up on one side so the other mount could drop below the top chassis bar,  then engine lowered and pushed across allowing the other mount to squeeze through (hope that makes sense?).

Crane pushed forward a few more inches,  engine e lowered level with the gearbox and then an inch or 2 forward so the gearbox shaft was vaguely in the clutch. A slight rotation of the propshaft and kerching - the engine and gearbox slotted together like star-crossed lovers (to paraphrase Shakespeare). Lots of whooping and high-fives ensued - naively,  I thought the hardest bit was done.

No,  the hard bit was just starting - trying to get the dowels in! We spent ages raising the engine,  lowering the engine,  twisting the engine, bashing bits with a rubber mallet - we couldn't get the dowels to go in. With the MT75 gearbox,  there are only 2 bolts between the engine and bellhousing (GBS have confirmed this is right) and they are at the top of the bellhousing only. So even as we tightened these bolts,  it didn't want to push the dowels in -  very annoying.

Eventually,  we decided to use a G-clamp to squeeze the dowel in - success! (great idea Dave).

Now I haven't mentioned the other problem we did have - none of my bolts were right! I had decided on bolt length by putting a screwdriver in the holes,  measuring the depth and thus deciding on bolt length. However,  it seems that none of these holes actually have a thread going the length of the hole so the bolts were a few mm too long.  I had to cut down the gearbox bolts before I could fit them properly and I still haven't done the gearbox mount bolt which has the same issue. And the bolts I ordered for the propshaft link weren't fully threaded (they were in the picture online) - they had a small,  5mm shank but that was enough  to prevent them fitting properly. So they need replacing as well! Seriously,  bolts have caused the most problems in this build so far...

Amazingly,  drilling the holes and bolting in the mounts was very simple. I'd earlier marked the centre of the cross-member on the chassis and I lined this up with the flywheel bolt and simply lowered the engine onto the plates where the mounts were to go. I specifically didn't drill pilot holes because whenever I do that,  the drill always wanders a tiny bit and the final hole is then a mm or 2 out,  which I didn't want with the mounts. So,  using the weight of the engine to keep everything still,  I just drilled through the mount holes - simples!

Cleared the swarf,  popped the bolts in (supplied by GBS so they were the right thing),  torqued up and Bob's a close relative.

The engine. Is. In!!

A physically and mentally demanding day but,  God,  it feels frigging AWESOME!

Many thanks to Dave (and Paul who turned up only 5 hours late but did find the mount bolts after I'd spent 20 minutes frantically searching for them).

No comments:

Post a Comment