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Frog Van, Right Spanner - Part 4

After a couple of days delay waiting for the right manifold gasket I was able to start putting the Frog Van's engine back together. (Note: if you have a picture of the gasket you want but not the part number, show it to the person who is ordering the part - even if they say they don't need it  - that way you should get the right part first time).

Before I could get started I had to drill out a bolt that had snapped inside the inlet manifold. After a bit of research on Youtube for the best way to do this I discovered you could get a special drill bit just for the job.

Fortunately I was able to improvise with a regular drill bit and a precision sanding drill bit head (I'm not exactly sure of the drill bit's proper name but essentially it's a drill bit with a metal coarse grain head in the shape of a cylinder slightly wider than the drill bit its self).

If you've never had to remove a broken bolt before the technique I used was to centre punch the end of the broken bolt. Drill a small hole into it - smaller than the diameter of the bolt. Then I used the precision sanding bit, with the drill in reverse. Pushed it into the hole I made. The roughness of the bit gave it enough grip to spin the broken end of the bolt right out of the hole.

I also had to re-glue the part I glued previously as this broke almost as soon as I started trying to detach the hose fixed to it. The extra day this had to dry was the only benefit of not getting the right gasket first time.

Once that was done I cleaned up all the surfaces between the manifolds and the cylinder head block and commenced putting it all back together. I won't describe putting everything back in detail. I'll just say it was much easier to reconstruct the engine than it was to pull it all apart.

The Frog Van's engine back together again.

It was quite dark by the time I was ready to start it up and I'm happy to say it started without too much effort. However there was a worrying white smoke coming up from between the carburetor and the engine block. It was too dark to tell where it was coming from so I shut it down for the night just to be safe.

This morning I started it up again and discovered the smoke appeared to be coming from one of the manifold studs. I think maybe it was just some gunk on the stud burning off because it cleared up and everything appears fine.

The engine's still not running as well as I hoped but it's no longer back firing and I've managed to minimize the back firing it appears to be doing back through the carburetor by adjusting the mixture screw.

I didn't get to take the Frog Van for a test drive today because the registration had expired so I went into town and paid that. Now all I have to do is fix the front passenger seat back into place and I'll be ready to give it a spin.

Will be nice to drive it again since it's been year (almost to the day) that it's been stuck on our back veranda waiting to be fixed.

Comments

  1. Well, that engine looks clean as a whistle to me! Hope it's all been worth it! Hope everything else is OK, such as tyres, brakes, oil etc?

    You didn't get to do the back out yet, as you were originally going to do. Pity you got rid of that little car, as that seemed to work alright, though, not holding as many people.

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  2. I don't really want to convert the back into a camper until I know the engine's going to be reliable. One thing I can say is that the brakes, tyres and oil are all okay.

    The other car I had was nice but wasn't practical (and the brakes were dodgy).

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