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V70 tdi. Fucked. Again.

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What a nice day, and I had the afternoon free to spend down the unit gently pottering. I drank tea the whole time I was there, as is normal, but I’ve been back an hour and am on my 5th pint of squash. Headache is now easing. Keep drinking kids, ‘‘tis hot.

Throbber got her bay degreased and jetwashed. Seemed a good time to do it, it certainly dried quick 


Nice and clean to the touch now, there was a huge amount of gunge over everything, so I covered it in degreaser every day last week, plenty degreaser (about 2 litres) plenty soaked in. There’s a little bit less paint in places now but so worth it.

But wait what’s that


Brakes have been accused of being sub par. A dying master cylinder might do it. No worries though as brakes are on the to do list and I, of course, have a spare master cylinder on donkey.

Then I hid in the shade and furtled with the engine. Cambelt checked and discarded as it was cracking, idlers and water pump removed, and chucked. Most bits wiped over with white spirit and blue roll - most of the caked on crud has now been removed. Cam removed, cam buckets replaced with new(!), cam replaced but not torqued. Pump belt and idlers replaced with throbbers new ones. Glow plugs removed and found to be a good matching set 


Pleased to have actually found something I can reuse, they went back in. Gasket faces and metal hose barbs were cleaned up, the vacuum pump was stripped, cleaned and reassembled.



Looking much betterer to my eye. Nothing will happen with it now until I get crank and camshaft oil seals, and some torque values and a torque wrench I trust to do it all back up. (I can’t remember how long ago I got mine but I think it would be 2003, and it would have been the cheapest available. Can you check them easily?)  Plan A there is to “SuperTom” all of that on Monday morning.

Slowly plodding on in the right direction I think.

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Deadhorse, some time ago 


Deaddonkey, this morning.


Had a good stint stripping the flesh from the carcass yesterday evening, it can’t hang around as there are fairly strict tax and test rules on the estate which we are low key flouting. Not a problem as long as it looks tidy, but I’m still waiting for the v5 so the metal fairy won’t touch it yet. Lights, bumper wheels and probably front doors still to come off, but it will start being noticeable then so I’ll do it the day it goes.



Bloody comfy now though. Plenty legroom.



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On the way to work this morning I stopped by GSF to pick up my cam seals and crank seal and bolt. Because work is a short walk away and GSF is on the other side of town, it wasn’t really on the way. So most sensible thing to do to stop losing the bits was to drop them by the unit.

But where to put them where they will be safe? We all know where, and it’s only a 5 minute job...


ta da. No chance of loss or damage now. Hmm, tea’s still hot, I’ll just offer up the cover....

and then cold tea .


Make some more tea, borrow a torque wrench (“don’t drop it. Please. If you do drop it, don’t not mention it, tell me. But just don’t fucking drop it “) use the wrench drink the tea



and all zipped up. I’ll admit to scratching my head as to why the aux belt that I was trying to pop on for the photo was so long. I’ve never claimed to be bright.

As I still wasn’t at work, and work still hadn’t rung I looked a bit closer at the odd chafing on the crank sensor wire.


Mr Mouse has been busy. I slit some old rubber hose and zip tied it over. I then shifted my attention to the falling apart hard wired into the loom glow plug feed.


Which you’ll notice is no longer hard wired into anything. Cheers donkey. This got badly rebuilt in a similar way and a sturdy eyelet soldered onto the end. Forgot to take pictures though. By this point it was to late to go to work, so i moved the engine stand out and had a look and rough clean of the manifold side.


Not a lot to go wrong on this side. Gave it a clean and rethreaded a turbo stud.


In theory, that should be ready to go. I’m pleased with my day. I’d recommend not making it to work to you all.

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Good progress !!

I need to copy your antics, and replace my cam and crank seal too, ones I got when I did the cam belt are not quite right.

Thanks for updating progress, good to see D5252T love on these pages 

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It’s in. 


and this being the internet I can pretend it happened just like that, no bother, dropped that bad boy in before breakfast and then went for a run.



Remember I said I’d never put an engine on a stand before... 

That little peg at the base of the ring gear is the TDC marker. You can probably see it’s trapped between the engine holding up bolt heads. Problemo uno.

That little peg at the base of the ring gear is the TDC marker. It lines up against a mark in the gearbox. Which is removed. Problemo dos.

Luckily I worked all this out having whipped everything off, so had no residual timing either. Balls.

But... checking on the spare / old stuff, the gearbox mark is opposite the sump cut out, and by some stroke of luck that’s within the ring gear pegs limited arc of movement. Surely not? Happy days. So I build off that, but cannot do the crucial turn it over by hand check.

Off the stand onto a crane, the gearbox just slips on (which should have been an omen). I’m confident it’s good, I put a lot of thinking into it, but I’m old enough to know you have to check it by hand. 

Bugger. There’s 2 slots in the sump, one opposite TDC marker, one very much not. Turns out. Bugger.

Welcome to D5252t timing. Attempt 2. Swinging around on a hoist in mid air. Can’t put it down cos that TDC marker is underneath it all. All covers off, cam unbolted both ends, all tensioners off. Find crank TDC, don’t mark it on the pulley as we won’t be here again, we know what we’re doing now. Take cam off, reset to cam TDC with the slot at the timing end parallel and above, torque cam down, set cam belt tensioner at timing end , find pump TDC mark, set tensioners. Speak to Ross and say how well it’s going, go and turn it over by hand to show him. Oh fuck.

Guess who didn’t torque up the cam wheels. I was getting pretty fed up with it now but...

Strip it back and do it again. Third time lucky. This time the TDC peg is a complete twat to find. And on your own it’s a twat of a job to find it as you have to get under the swinging, very heavy engine to look, but be standing at one end of the engine to turn it over, a degree at a time. But I got there. It turns over by hand and everything.

Time now was very short, so exceedingly grumpily, I pushed the awkward, exceedingly heavy engine crane and engine over the bumpy concrete to the Throbber, which was about as unpleasant job as I have done recently. The wheels stop dead on any little bump, or worse, dip, and will only move with a “gonna get a hernia or shit myself” shove, at which point you are instantly trying to control a many many kilo pendulum. 

I were that nobbed off by the time I had it swinging over the bay that I just kinda threw it in until it got stuck, then shouted for super Tom and a crowbar. Then legged it for the school run.

So it’s in. Fuck knows if it works, or what the collateral damage on the way in was, but it’s in.

Easy innit.

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Haha, yep timing on these engines is a tad rubbish.

Well done though !!

I'm hoping to have the dead engine out today, but I've got a gravel path to contend with, so hoping I can push the car away, rather than the engine crane, we shall see.

Out of curiosity - Do you still have the boxes the cam and crankshaft seals came in ? , I've ordered a set but I'm not convinced they are correct.

Well done that man.

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Thanks. 😁

I’d really not try it over gravel if I were you.It was awful over concrete/old tarmac. I was on me own though. To try that I’d want 5 bodies, 2 controlling the engine swing and 3 shifting the crane. I don’t know how heavy it all is, but it’s lots, all pushing those hard nylon wheels into the ground. Too much swing and the whole lot will go over. Have fun.

ive lobbed the boxes but they came from GSF as they listed dimensions for the seals on their website and had them on the shelf. The boy in store was great and helpful and I was a little incredulous that I’d found the fabled perfect autoshop, but then realised he’d given me the wrong, considerably short, change. 

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How did it go? ^^^

Is it fixed yet dad? Um, no. Not quite 😁

managed some time on it this weekend though and have been slowly plodding on. SuperTom  says autodata say it’s 16 hours for an engine swap. 2 full days of bloke who knows what he’s doing with the correct tools easily to hand. And a ramp. It’s not a small job, there really are quite a lot of bits!

Today I ar mostly been dun :

- took the ropes off and did the engine mounts up , including a little jack n wriggle to reseat the safety wire on the rear mount. Fitted gearbox dipstick and torque stay. 

- fitted the aircon pump (which has never been disconnected and thus is hopefully still good 

-aux belt and power steering lines

-diesel lines, all with proper fuel clips, new diesel filter. 

- recaptured and tamed the engine bay wiring loom from starter motor to alternator. Most of this lives down the front behind the radiators for ease* of access. Changed the alternator connector as it was different, soldered and everything. Took hours. 


-coolant hoses. Coolant hoses everywhere. All with cleaned lubed jubbly clips. Changed the frosty morning cabin preheaters, an important task this time of year 


-interrupted the wastegate feed pipe and replaced MAP sensor feed line as it was perished.


- connected the turbo to the zorst.

and lastly and certainly not leastly, nor indeed surprisingly, a problem. Trying to put the engine stay brace thing on i just could not get the bolt to bite. Hmmm. 


All lines up, dowels in good, all other bolts work and it’s definitely the correct bolt. And a sneaky longer bolt doesn’t help. A head scratcher.

An advantage of a cannibalising engine swap is you have something to look at while scratching your head. Let’s look at the back of the hole. 


thats it there, that empty oblong. No threads in sight ..oh shit yes, I remember. There was a thing rattling around in there. Merde.


there’s the thing. Arse. It’s a gearbox out jobby to slip that in. You know, I don’t think its that important. With everything else nipped up tight it all looks like it will stay put.

- dropped a strut as it was in the way of my driveshaft refitting efforts. Strut tops are proper fucked. Fitted drivers side shaft only as other side can wait until suspension bits turn up

So, no, not fixed yet, but definitely getting closer.





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Slowly slowly indeed. I’ve been busy, wife’s really really busy. Still, life is what happens to you whilst you’re busy making other plans. Man.

Big Boys Luvely Jubbly selection box turned up. 


So I finally made the transmission cooler hoses up.




All neat and tidy, pleased with that.

Nicked some mounts and hose clips off donkey, and have a very low profile manual boost controller. 


All neat and tidy. Pleased with that too.

The cabin has been known to harbour a coolanty smell from time to time. Let’s have a look.



Me leaking longtime. New matrix put in. Not entirely sure how it’s going to bleed out as it’s by my ankles with entrance and exit at the bottom corner, but the flow must be enough I guess.



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New* master cylinder arrived. I couldn’t use the one from donkey as that diesel estate Volvo had a first buyer who specified traction control. Belt, braces and binder twine will see us good, settle down Meredith. Enough is different that I just bought a bit that fits.

Servo has had a good couple of coats of blue roll stuck down with rust converter, which exposed a bit of bare metal when removed. What to quickly cover it with that will never come off? 


that’ll do it. Not proud. 

The rear calipers both put up a fight, chiefly due to how seized the line into the caliper body was. So rather than leaving well alone I cut them off. 


They are properly seized. So much so that winding them out with a big ratchet merely brought out the core. Arse. Previous nosings had already revealed that this was very much the better set of brakes between the two cars, so no donkey bits. (Newer calipers, very seized pistons).

Do some measuring and off to bisleys tools. Stand in the queue.

”m10 x 1.0 tap please if you by any chance have one on the shelf?”

”why yes sir of course. First pass, second pass or Greta Garbos knickers pass?”

” Um..... rethreading a brake caliper in the hands of a rank amateur pass?”

” It’s not a vag is it? They have m9 .... “

I do like an excuse to use a good tool shop. 


And we all know how it works, I’ll probably never use that tap again!

A lot of cleaning and a bit of greasing and they join the pile of brakes to be fitted 


It then occurred to me that there was no actual need to have the rear calipers off the car. Which is probably why they were so seized on. And that I now had to replace the rear hard lines as well now. Which had been just fine when it was inevitable. Pondered this for a bit. We live, we learn.

Happily, the front left line had been similarly seized, and was unavoidable, so time to learn hard line flanging. Cut some spare learner line off donkey and got a lesson on lines from Tom. All went well, didn’t need the practice bit. 

Cleared myself to a shady spot with all the gubbins and carefully made my first ever hard brake line.



Got all the contours pretty good, straight bits looked as if they should be straight. Pleased with my work.



 I’d carefully and faithfully copied the scrap piece practice pipe, which was a shame. It was very hot today. 

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Have you ever looked at something and thought “nah”?



“Hello? Parts for volvos? Please take all my money.”


New new shiny shiny.


That looks more promising. Popped them on, along with the brakes. Fed up with shit brakes.


New new shiny shiny. New apec hose, pads and fitting kit. New, bigger pagid discs. New* Volvo T5 bigger* calipers.

New, 55 section toyo proxies finally fitted to my resprayed wheels 


They fill the arch nicely but don’t look as if they will foul on anything. Max sidewall for max comfort. I’m hoping all this expense is going to make the Pre-pothole finch n brace a thing of the past.


 New new shiny shiny. And beginning to look good.


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Not quite. No fluids in it at the mo. 

I am hoping that it is going to be dramatically different. I’ve never fitted new suspenders to a car before, but every time I’ve done it to a bike it’s been magical. Fingers crossed.

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Landlord has been round expressing displeasure at the aesthetic. Promised donkey would move on soon. 


He does have a point.

Back suspension in.


New hard lines made up all across the rear beam and up to the abs pump. I’m right fed up with brakes right now.


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21 hours ago, sutty2006 said:

She throbs once more! 

Nearly sir, nearly. Not, quite there yet.

19 hours ago, Minimad5 said:

Good man.

Love popping in to see progress.

Thanks. It’d be nice to have more progress to share. 😁

4 hours ago, Dirk Diggler said:

have never seen a skip truck used in that manner before 

Reversed up, arms down, chains hooked together through the rear doors, kick doors shut and winch. 2 mins start to finish I reckon, I nearly missed it. Impressive. Brutal.

2 hours ago, Lacquer Peel said:

I've just bought an S70 and like the way it throbs.
It taps a bit, I think TADT,S but I'm worried about the valves now.
Good work in this thread.

They do tap a bit. Mine was defo knocking for a bit first, so not a zero warning situation. A set of buckets was 50 quid from trodo.eu so perfectly affordable.

From what I’ve learned recently check the crank pulley on its inside face and the state of the fuel pump belt as they get forgotten.

Tbh it’ll probably be fine 😁


The Throbber is not there yet, and is providing an exercise in patience testing. Starting is shite, this was because, we thought, the timing was slightly wrong, so I’d get a prentice lesson on dialling it in like a big boy. This didn’t happen though as Tom discovered you can’t use a dial gauge on this pump. That really confused him as he was sure he did when it exploded originally. 

Then we played find out where it’s timed wrong by dan, but we (I) passed that test. Silver linings.

Discovered that there’s no power at the glow plugs and my lovingly crafted glow plug loom was shit. The relay is working though so the problem lies in between. We will bypass into a new loom later.

Tom was all happy that the starting was shit because of the glow plugs, declared it diagnosed and gave it a cheery little blip of throttle. It revved lovely, then stumbled and stalled. 

It is fair to say there was an air of disappointment in the workshop.

New glowplug connector ends are in the post, will get them wired in and then see where we are. 

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I might be massively wrong, but pretty sure you can DTI the pump. I'll dig out my AEL timing kit (same engine) as it deffo has a fitting to screw in the ass of the pump..mhhm.


Ooh if you need any bits, let me know as I'll be breaking my daily soon (once I've settled the other one)

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20 hours ago, Minimad5 said:

I might be massively wrong, but pretty sure you can DTI the pump. I'll dig out my AEL timing kit (same engine) as it deffo has a fitting to screw in the ass of the pump..mhhm.


Ooh if you need any bits, let me know as I'll be breaking my daily soon (once I've settled the other one)

Who knows. I’m hampered by having read too much on the internet about it and having bugger all base knowledge, which is a poor foundation to argue with Tom effectively. He’s a really very good mechanic*, there is usually more than one way to skin a cat, and even when it doesn’t work I’m still learning. One of the things I’m still trying to learn, despite being nearly old, is patience!

A picture of them may help jog Tom’s memory if you wouldn’t mind.


* who is doing all this off the clock around paying jobs 

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Today was a dial gauge day. My new adapter (vw part, for an audi engine in a Scandinavian car) had arrived and I was confident in the few bits of knowledge I had acquired. So let’s try again.

first step, work out how to dial gauge. Handily, I have a spare pump. Being able to practice in comfort is invaluable 



sufficiently practised, onto the car.


well snug down there. Aiming for .55 lift at TDC. Apparently. 

Lashed up a very effective pump locking timing tool, that wood wedge gives nice steady adjustment, so much so it’s been put away with the tools for next time.


Spent a while working out how to actually set it all so it didn’t walk as tensioners were done (do the camshaft pulley last is my conclusion). Having got that satisfactory, I popped on a few pipes and cleared the bay of spanners, wacked on the battery and cranked it. Nothing. No, not nothing, shit loads of diesel. Ah.

 I popped the plug back in the fuel pump where the adapter had been, and tried again.

And It only bloody brum brummed. 

And then It did 2 laps of the estate under its own power (before I hoofed it and it blew the lashed on inlet hose. Schmooky. )That’s big news in this house.

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