Thursday, September 28, 2017

I should be excited, right?

 I finally conquered the spring plate installation - what I was doing wasn't working so I tried a couple of other approaches until I found one that worked.  The bolts will need to be swapped out for the shorter version with the proper strength - I plan to do that once it's installed and assembled so I don't have to worry about it popping apart on me.
 The engine arrived about an hour into the 4 hour delivery window - pretty good timing - I didn't have to wait around for 4 hours.
 Popped the lid off and found everything wrapped up very nicely.
 First oder of business was to inspect everything and swap out the air cleaners to the RamFlo units I bought.  Lower profile and better breathing.

There are no sled tins but I have a set to install with the industrial tins.

It's going to stay on the pallet until I'm ready to install it.
 I put the transmission on the bench, installed the mounts and looked it over to make sure it has a Type 3 hockey stick and check out various other pieces of what I requested.

I won't be doing a whole lot more until next week - I ordered a couple of parts from Germany that were due today but it's not here - I had to put a trace on it because it hasn't moved in a couple of days.  I might find out tomorrow what's going on with it.  Until the box shows up, I can't finish the install...not a great start.  If I get to the point where I need something to do - I've got tons of under body cleaning to do - I've been very slowly removing the super old undercoating.  I could easily spend three or four days working on that alone.

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

“Try again. Fail again. Fail better.”

With the engine and transmission en route, I figured it was high time I get my shit together and get this subframe back together.  I started off the day with good intentions - figured out the proper angle for the spring plates after a decent bit of research.  I mounted the subframe in the car with the intent of getting both spring plates mounted and ready for the transmission.  Then I discovered that there was (somehow) still sand in the subframe and that sand had made its way to the splined section/middle of the subframe.  I'm a bit puzzled at the sand - I spent an hour blowing that shit out of every crack and crevice in the subframe and when no more was jostled out of the various cavities, I had considered it done...although today's exercise proved me wrong.

So the subframe went through a vigorous cleaning and it's now drying out...I'll check it tomorrow for additional sand and, potentially, try to get it put back together.  To ensure that I make some worthwhile progress tomorrow, I'm going to start with the fuel tank draining and mocking up where I want to install the fuel pump.  The 8mm nipple will arrive on Friday - would be nice if the rest of this mess is ready to thing to check off the list in anticipation of the big engine install.

I was hoping that I'd have made more progress than I did...but sometimes things just don't go the way you plan.

Pivot and persevere...

Thursday, September 21, 2017

The bones of Icarus

Some of the other parts have started arriving over the last couple of days.  The RamFlo air filters came from the UK, shocks came from Ohio.  I found a killer place for the shocks - they're typically around $90 each.  I got these for $65 each.

The industrial tins came in today as did the adapter for the fuel line (8mm to 5mm) for the front end.  I think all that's left now is fuel hose and some clamps.  When the pan is restored - I'll swap the internal line from 5mm to 8mm and then eliminate the adapter.
 I pulled out the spare door that was on Icarus (the 65 I bought out of New York several years ago) and cleaned it up because my kid was stir crazy (home sick with strep) and he needed something to do.  He's starting to like working on the car so I'll take advantage of it whenever possible.  The inside of the door, the hinges and the frame are in good shape - the outer skin, however, is dented in a few places.
The window regulator bolt holes are a little rough on the bottom end...which is odd because the windows on Icarus seemed to work just fine.

I just bought a ton of NOS parts - they'll show up at the end of next week - hopefully right around the same time the engine/trans should show up.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Engine's ready, NOS hatch seals, NOS mirror, industrial tins

 Good news is that the engine is done and has been through dyno.  It's made 110hp with 126 lb/ft of torque.  I'm pretty happy with those numbers - I was expecting more around the 90hp figure - so I'm getting what amounts to a 20% increase vs. what I expected.  Here's a video

The engine will be crated in a couple of days and the transmission will be ready about a day later.  It'll all ship out early next week and hopefully arrive the following week - perfect timing!

I swiped the correctly colored wires from a broken contact plate and plan to install them on the 4 way switch wiring at some point soon...I'll get the relays mounted and adjust the wiring from there to keep it as clean as possible.  The fancy wire crimper I bought is pretty nice to work with - much better than the one I bought years ago.  All that's left is to figure out how to mount up the relays under the dash without it being more of a rat's nest than what VW created by stuffing all of this under the tiny dash.
 After doing a bit of reading, I decided to buy (not make) some industrial shields since I'm running J-tubes vs. heater boxes.  The point of them is to direct the exhaust heat away from the heads and box in the air flow to keep it moving rearward.  They should arrive around the same time as the engine so, again, the timing is good.  These may stick around for good or they may get replaced with something 'improved' because I can already see an opportunity to improve them by extending them under the cylinder head a bit and tapping the two bumps on the bottom of the head then securing the outer edge of the tin to the head.  Who knows though, maybe they won't rattle as they are...
 Scored two NOS rear hatch seals from Spain.  One has a minor tear in it that I can glue up.  The other one is going to go to a friend.  I'll have to keep my eyes peeled to find a perfect one - the repops are worthless.  I've got three NOS front seals and they're still being made by VEWIB - not sure why they don't make the rear hatch seals.  I've tried looking for the profile from the various Chinese suppliers but have come back with nothing.  It can't be that unique that this was the only car, can it?
 The left side mirror showed up...or rather I chased it down at a post office after two hours of driving all over the place to find it between three post offices.  After telling the manager of the last post office to scan it that I wasn't leaving until he produced the box (and waiting another 20 minutes), the box was handed to me.  The postal service in Georgia has been pretty fucking awful overall so I guess I'm not at all surprised this happened.
The mirror, overall, is pretty nice but it's not perfect (as advertised).  The glass is 'pushed in' so there's a lip of metal around the edge and that edge now has styrofoam shit stuck to it because of the packing job.  I'll hang on to it with the hope that I can either get the glass fixed or find a better one in the future.  All it takes is patience.

There are other parts inbound - I've sold off a lot of miscellaneous parts lately and that's freed up both space and funds - I'm focused on my car and the parts it will need to be properly restored.  Makes things a lot easier to track now that they're primarily in an inventory listing.

My overall goal with the car is to have it look as stock as possible with modern touches - bigger engine with more modern parts, upgraded braking system and better seat belts for safety and leave the rest of the car as close to stock as absolutely possible.

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Note what is in this place when you're caught up in this chase

I snapped a photo of the misalignment on the cover when the spring plate is in place.  I've conceded that I will have to remove this spring plate - mount the subframe in the car, level the car, measure the proper angle for the spring plate and reinstall.  Given that I'm in the midst of a certification preparation - this is going to sit for a few weeks.
Since I know I'm highly unlikely to use the original distributor again, I decided to sell my last NOS ZV/JCU 4R3 distributor and spares.  I posted it up on Facebook groups and  To my surprise, it sold about 3 hours later to a guy who owns some very nice cars - I'm happy that it's going to a great home.  Selling this distributor pays for the carpet kit that I have on order.

Yeah, the rubber mat that came in my car originally is drying out and cracking/falling apart.  It's only a matter of time before there's nothing left of the rubber mat, unfortunately.  I do appreciate that it'll be a bit quieter in the car with the carpet and the sound deadening that I recently bought.  There's a very slow crawl to a complete car - one or two parts at a time.

I've been on the fence about selling my bumper guards with the rubber ends that I bought a few months ago.  I've seen them on a few different cars now and I don't think I'm going to use them and I'm in a 'slim down' mode so it kind of makes sense to sell them.

I also found another source for the Boge steering dampers so I bought two more.

The driver's side mirror that I bought was shipped to the wrong address - the seller responded today telling me that they are shipping a replacement.  Sucks that it got lost but maybe they'll get lucky and it'll get returned to them once the recipient realizes it's not addressed to them.

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Rear subframe assembly failure

At some point today, I decided to tackle installing the spring plates on the subframe.  I cleaned the wax off of the bushings, added some talc and went about installing the first one.

A bit of trial and error ensued as I aligned both spring plates to the same angle but I eventually got it right.
Then came the time to install the cover and this is where the wheels came off the wagon, so to speak.  The covers don't align with the bolt holes.  As in 'none' of them align with an open bolt hole.  I wrapped a ratchet strap around the torsion tube and attempted to 'lift' it enough to align the holes - finding nothing but failure.  To my credit (or ignorance), I've never replaced these bushings on a subframe that's not mounted to the car.  I'm starting to think that I will have to mount this to the body and have another 'go'.  If that doesn't work - I may have to wait until the engine and transmission arrive so I can install those, then install the spring plates.  I was hoping to be able to assemble the whole thing outside of the car and then roll it back under the body as one unit but that might not be possible.  I'm not really crunched for time but my patience are wearing a bit thin because I have yet to complete this task and I've, so far, found about five ways to NOT get this done.  Giving in and installing it back in the car might be failure number 6 or it might be the win I've been searching for all along.  At this point, it certainly can't hurt to try...

I did, however, have one almost win today:  The 4 way flashers work!  The only residual problem with them is that the flasher relay clicks when nothing is happening.  I am going to try a different flasher and see if I got a bad one or if there's some wiring issue I need to chase down.  I also need to clean up the wiring a bit now that I've got the route figured out.

NOS right hand mirror from France

Super nice mirror I bought from a seller in France.  It's the larger head and has the longer arm - two main benefits: I can actually see things in the mirror!

It's in amazing shape and I'm happy I snagged it!

Monday, September 4, 2017

1904 engine pics

Received a couple of pictures of the engine during the build process.  It should be going to dyno in about a week and then ship out a week or two after that point.  The timing is perfect because I should be done with my certification process by then.

Fall is going to be a great season!