So...this happened today. I pulled the engine out of the car after waffling back and forth about it for weeks. I'm going to put the 1500 S engine back together and tune it, replace the clutch and the throw out bearing and stuff the engine back into the car.
The good news is that the clutch is 200mm diameter so finding replacements should be simple. There was a fair amount of debris inside that's now mostly gone. There's been something not quite right about the clutch since the first day and I'd like to figure out what the issue is...now that the engine is out, I'm going to test out the pedal action to see if it may have been the pressure plate. If the weird 'hang' persists, then I'll swap out the heim link clutch cable with a different style to see if that improves things a bit.
While the engine is out, I'd like to explore a better way to wire up the hard start relay so that the bulk of the odd wiring is under the back seat vs. suspended in air over the starter. There's got to be a cleaner way to wire it up.
I discovered a bit of gear oil on the inside surface of the left side wheel - I'm hoping that doesn't turn into a full blown axle rebuild. I'd be tempted to replace the drum set up with disc if so...