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The Current Driveway... 323 progress(?!) update.


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Well, old Rosie did not let me down...


MOT passed without advisories!  Brakes are rubbing a wee bit, but working well according to the machine, and it was great to take her out for a proper run again.

East Germany 1, West Germany nil.

Having said that, my new Magnaflow cat has arrived, so I'll slot that in this weekend and try the Audi Coupe again.

Cheers all.

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Well, never did get to the Audi's exhaust (imbibed a few drams of Speyside's finest instead!), but did manage to achieve this...


Yes, this carbuncle will be used to lift out the 323's engine, and lift in the new one!  I don't have access to a proper engine hoist, and anyway, the car is on a rough bit of ground that wouldn't suit one. 

I had the steel (work were going to throw it away!  Galvy angle iron!), and the chain pull may have followed me out of some previous occupation, so t'was all free... my favourite price.

After this task, it will all be stored again, it and some other bits are destined to become the framework of my Trabbi-sheltering garage lean-to one day.

Also, first commute in the Trabster today... no issues... big fun.


Had forgotten how much I like seeing that wee blue roof around the place!


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Old lump is out!  Had the day off yesterday, and the sun was shining, so forged ahead...

The ancillaries were pretty quickly removed, as I've had this thing apart a couple of times now.  The engine itself was held in by it's mount on the offside, and only four big bolts on the bell housing. 

Whatever's wrong with this thing, it's definitely in cylinder three btw, only oily plug, and exhaust port oiled up too.  I'm suspecting a cracked head, that opens up when warm, but I don't really know.

The aforementioned hoist set up worked really well, although the engine did have to be turned a bit to wriggle out of it's home.  It is currently sitting in the corner, thinking about what it's done...



While everything's out the way, we will clean up and oil up the usually inaccessible corners, before fitting the 'new' donk this weekend (work and weather permitting, of course). 


The clutch looks pretty brand-new, which is nice, and the flywheel is in good nick.


This repair has turned into a proper saga, and we're all desperate to see the wee thing hit the road again.

Speaking of wee things, the Trabi has been pretty much faultless buzzing back and forth this week, thankfully.  I'm in on call this weekend, so she'll have covered 300 miles by the end of the week.  So far, 39 mpg's have been achieved (conservatively, quite hard to be accurate without a fuel gauge), I know I was getting better than that before, but that'll do.

Not a bad place to spend the commute...



Cheers all.



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Light at the end of the tunnel with the Mazda!  That's the new engine in and running, no cooling system as yet, so short bursts only....

The above vid was the first turn of the key with the plugs in, I had spun her over 3 times by this point, with the plugs removed.  On the third go the oil pressure light went out, which gave me the confidence to go for real. 

Hard to tell from the video, but it's honestly one of the smoothest engines I've ever heard!  I'd noticed when checking the valve train over, that this (8 years younger) engine has rollers on it's rocker arms.  The old ones just had a bearing surface direct on the cam.  I assume this is done for smoothness or longevity?  





The condition of the camshaft area leads me to believe the seller's mileage figure of 62,000, although the oil filter hadn't been off in many a moon!  No sludge or rust in the waterways though, tomorrow will prove the cooling system works hopefully.

There were a few small differences between the two, a second coolant temp probe has been added to the new one, I don't have a wire to connect to it.  The bracket for the Demio's  power steering pump was of no use, but easily removed to reveal the correct tapped holes in the block we needed.

Clutch looked perfect, so has been re-used...



and it all dropped back into position lovely.  The heath-robinson lifting gear worked really well, I don't think a proper hoist would have been any better now. It's a very light engine mind, easily liftable by two people.

This was a stop for tea/rain, just after changing the oil.


We're all very pleased here as you can imagine, not just for my eldest, who should have been tooling around for the last few months, but also to see a lovely old car alive again.  There's no hint of anything out the exhaust, so as long as she pulls ok, hopefully that's another good few years of motoring ahead.

And, the gold rocker cover fitted this one too, which is the main thing apparently!

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