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1977 Princess 1.8 HL - UnSaggy Brown Joy: Paint!

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On 10/1/2020 at 3:57 PM, phil_lihp said:

Also, and I realise this is perhaps a little off-topic, has anyone actually bought a Chuppa-Chup since about 1996?

Had one in 2020, but not paid for, Akbars in Sheffield will give you one when you pay the bill.

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Today's seen some useful progress.

Fuel tank has been repaired so I refitted the lid with some fresh sealant, sprayed the top in waxoyl and spent a while muttering and getting covered in underseal refitting it to the car.




It's since had a coat of waxoyl underneath the tank as well.  I've also reinstated the tow bar which the previous owner had removed, it just seems right.


In between those jobs I also pulled out the passenger side insulation and mopped out the puddle underneath, dried it out through the day and gave the rusty bits and the welded patch I had done a few months back a coat of vactan followed by a coat of waxoyl paint.


I've cleared some dirt out of the scuttle panel but still none the wiser on how the rain water gets in, although as I now have a car cover for it that's no longer such a big issue.

I 've refitted the correct top hose for the radiator and charged up the battery so it could be woken up with the aid of a can of fuel and put up on ramps for the fuel tank refit.

I also fitted the new cork valve cover gasket as it was leaking, no surprise given the state of the old one, which was rock hard and came off in pieces.  I cleaned up the surfaces and refitted the new one.  Everything looks ok under there to my untrained eye.


All that remains now is to get the bonnet back on and its back on the road,  I'm hoping that will be very soon as I've had a photo of it in primer so it's getting close.  He's working on it in his spare time so it's a slow process and it turned out to have a lot of issues hiding under the ruined paint but it's all fixed now and on the home straight.


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He already has provided me with a list of possible suspects on the previous page, I can rule out the windscreen seal as that's brand new and the scuttle panel is clear so I suspect it's where he suggested behind the front wings.  

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  • phil_lihp changed the title to 1977 Princess 1.8 HL - UnSaggy Brown Joy: Paint!


That is giving me flashbacks to 1983, where as an excite-able youth I embarked on my very first engine repair on a 1.8HLS just like that one (apart from the shiny bits).
It developed a running on three cylinders issue,

Pulled it apart, cleaned it up and it ran much better, my father wrote it off shortly afterwards.

The crux of the problem was actually a side effect of, lets call it valve bounce, the push rod had escaped from under the rocker whilst being driven by an excite-able youth.


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Fortunately these do seem to be very simple engines, nothing looks like a massive job on it.  Fortunately this one's in rude health and mechanically it needs nothing at all at the moment.  I have bought paint for the rocker cover but didn't want to get into that with no bonnet to shelter the top of the engine while it's off.  

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I still can't drive it, the sender unit's leaking where it clamps to the petrol tank.  It's one where you hammer it around to engage in some tabs that are supposed to clamp it tight the harder it's pushed round but it doesn't seem to be working, I suspect the rubber seal is too hard to be of much use and besides which I am pretty sure it's not the right sender for the car, it has to be rotated round so the pickup tube is at the bottom of the tank but when you do that, the float is on its side and can't move, as per the photos from when I first took the tank apart a couple of pages back.  

I can live without the sender unit working but I do need to seal it, any suggestions?  I might have another poke at it in the next couple of days and see if I can get it any tighter but I think I might have to resort to some sealant.  I have a tube of instant gasket, would that be OK to use do we think?

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The sender unit seal and the ring itself is the same as MGB and Land Rover Series.  I resorted to a petrol tank repair putty even after getting the locking ring on mine replaced and using a new seal, it seems the tabs that the ring is supposed to lock  into just go soft with rust/age and won't lock in any more.  I hope I never have to remove the sender, it's going to be a right war.

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Cheers, I have ordered a new MGB seal and locking ring for the heady price of £2.99 and a tube of blue Hylomar - hopefully that'll all be here at the weekend and I can get enough decent weather to see if it sorts the issue.  Especially given that it has the wrong sender installed, I don't want to seal it in too permanently if I can help it but my main concern is to make it seal.  It did before so it can again!

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The new seal and ring combined with a splodge of hylomar seems to have done the trick, no more drips.  

This is good, as it means her royal brownness is back on the road.  I celebrated by putting £20 of Asda's finest in it and then driving about running a few errands and apart from the alternator belt being a bit noisy, it behaved perfectly.  It's running superbly now that the fuel isn't 50% sand.

However,  it is a Princess so to redress the balance, the clutch master (slave?) cylinder started leaking. 


Looking at it, I cant understand why.  It looks immaculate and totally hasn't got mouse damage on the gaitor or any obvious corrosion.

I'm hoping an MGB one will fit.  Certainly looks similar but I'll try and find some part numbers first.


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I found via the owner's group that it is unique but I've found a chap who sells both cylinders and seal kits.  I'm going to try a seal kit first, general consensus is they usually come around OK.  It's only £11 so worth a shot and I'd quite like to have a go at rebuilding it.

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