A Californian drying out in South Africa

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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by moose » Fri Aug 30, 2019 7:56 am

Did you have all the other spark plugs out when cranking engine, was battery fully charged and in good condition?
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by The Nun » Fri Aug 30, 2019 8:02 am

Are all the cylinders reading the same? or just one of them?
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by African Imp » Fri Aug 30, 2019 10:47 am

To The Moose and The Nun.

Today I took just the one spark plug out as I am busy right now, I did open the throttle as the sledge hammer shows, the battery is in great condition, the cranking speed was quick.

What can I expect from an original short motor with its original fifty two year old pistons, rings changed say twenty four years back?

The sport cylinder head was re done by Fergie of Viglietti Motors, Fergie was the cylinder head spacialst, they had the Ferrari agency and only did top work. :)
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by moose » Fri Aug 30, 2019 10:50 am

what are you trying to achieve?

If it is was running ok leave it alone and just drive it.

Knowing these figures and comparing to WSM figures they are wrong but the car is running fine? As to what figures you expect from a 24 year old engine the answer is impossible to say.

You cannot fix a problem that is not there. If you think the car is sluggish, burning oil, uneconomical, pressurising the breather system, missfiring, etc etc then rebuild the engine.

If a car is running fine why would you carry out a compression test (i know you have just got a new toy and want to play) if a car is not running correctly a compression test can help but not diagnose what is at fault exactly that is when a leak down test comes into its own.
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by 617sqn » Fri Aug 30, 2019 11:05 am

Tinkering. 🤔

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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by African Imp » Fri Aug 30, 2019 11:09 am

To Moose, yes, I intend to do as you say, run it and use it as it is, the time and effort to remove the engine and then have it bored for the new pistons that I bought for the job just makes no sense, not to mention the actual costs involved.

The other reason I would like the short motor to remain as it is will be the short motors originality, as it has the same pistons and bearings that the car left the Rootes factory with.
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by The Nun » Fri Aug 30, 2019 12:06 pm

Of course the other thing you might consider is the engine is absolutely fine and it's the gauge that's inaccurate or has a fault, have you done a test with an actual known pressure to see it reads accurately? It would be a swine to find you renewed the engine to find that still read the same and it was in fact a 30 quid gauge that was wrong?
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by African Imp » Fri Aug 30, 2019 1:44 pm

To The Nun,

Ye of little faith!

Using my workshop compressor I used the air line to pressure test the Equus gauge.

Doing what you suggsted, it is close enough for me :D
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by African Imp » Sat Aug 31, 2019 6:20 am

The new rear engine mount rubber bush that RH supplied last year has now been exchanged for the genuine Rootes supplied one :)
It will be interesting to see if the engine feels any different with the genuine rubber bush?
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by African Imp » Sat Aug 31, 2019 8:36 am

A drive around the local area gave me an engine that was more up to temperature, so a hot test, the pressure on cylinder number one went up a little.

Of interest to me was that the NGK BP6ES spark plugs one and three are burning much the same now.

I took the advice given by Moose of Century Motorsport and opened the plug gap to 32 thou, or was that 33 thou?

Reading back I find that the NGK plug is factory set to 32 thou, the advice being to leave it that way. Imp027
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by African Imp » Sun Sep 01, 2019 6:01 am

A past discussion on NGK spark plugs mentioned that they were made in China, the standard grade ones anyway?

This had me looking at some that I have here, there is no mention where the parts are made but they are assembled in South Africa.

It looks like we were told in Jan 2017 to use the factory gap setting of 32 thou which is what I am using now.
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by The Nun » Sun Sep 01, 2019 10:04 am

Assembled in RSA could?? just mean they were put into the boxes there after the plugs were imported from China, assembled might not mean manufactured or even physically put together? By saying assembled might give them better sales as probably most folk would think, as you do, they are RSA put together and so not buying anything of doubtful quality from China, but in fact you might be?
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by African Imp » Sun Sep 01, 2019 10:32 am

Made in Great Britain, made in the EU, made in the RSA, I guess we have never really known the full truth about where things are made?

I was told by the local Harken (USA) brand agent that Lewmar ( UK ) marine winches are made in China, this was to discredit the Lewmar brand of course.

Speaking to the Lewmar agents later I found that China did in fact make some Lewmar parts, they were then shipped to the UK and assembled there.

As far as I know BMW and Mecedes have for many years imported leather seats from South Africa and into Germany, I doubt Made in South Africa can be found on those seats but I may be wrong?

Champion spark plugs say even less, they used to be stamped made in South Africa but no longer.
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by Dave ' Linwood ' Lane » Sun Sep 01, 2019 10:36 am

My new toy is built in S Africa
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by The Nun » Sun Sep 01, 2019 11:17 am

A sour krout, Swinen,
You will have to get the indicators working on it you realise? :lol:
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by African Imp » Sun Sep 01, 2019 11:22 am

The Mercedes alloy rims remind me that a HUGE amount of similar rims are made in the RSA and shipped Worldwide :D

I think there is a distribution center in the EU?
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by African Imp » Mon Sep 02, 2019 6:23 am

For many years I had no heater control valve, the system was left connected winter and summer, the vent control closed or open as required?

I then fitted a VW control, it does work but looks a mess?

With my parts transfer from Eric for work done on his 1967 Hillman Imp Mk2 came a surprise by way of a decent looking heater control valve, the new oil pump also.

So my next upgrade on the Californian will be to fit the correct heater contol valve, the oil pump is not required on the cars engine right now.
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by African Imp » Tue Sep 03, 2019 5:53 am

Who has their favorite spanners?

I used to have a set, then when I sold the race Imp the tools went with the sale :(

Since then I have not seen any that really grab my eye, the recent donation of Imp parts from ex Imp Club member Eric included a whole host of tools, some are real gems, such as this set of three which were made in Germany but are sized 3/4" - 5/8" and 7/16" which has already seen a lot of use by myself. :)

I assume the set was larger and included 1/2" and 9/16" sizes as well, they were not in the mix of what arrived so worth keeping an eye open for in the future?

They are sized 7- 3/4" to 5- 1/4" long which is a handy size for the Imp engine.
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by African Imp » Tue Sep 03, 2019 1:56 pm

SAome of the Hillman Imp parts I was gifted are brand new, one is a rotor from a Lucas distributor, it is marked DD inside, so from Didtributor Doctor I presume?

I tried it in the cars 25D distributor, a tight fit and it was too tall to allow the cap to close on the distributor.

With the parts was a 45D distributor in parts, plus a brand new cap and a set of blue leads, also new, is the rotor from the 45D distributor I wonder?
The brass rotor is about 4mm longer than standard.
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by Dave ' Linwood ' Lane » Tue Sep 03, 2019 9:10 pm

It is for a 45
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by African Imp » Wed Sep 04, 2019 7:08 am

Dave ' Linwood ' Lane wrote:
Tue Sep 03, 2019 9:10 pm
It is for a 45
Thanks, I assume that the spare 45D distributor that Eric imported then required the correct rotor and a cap, they and the blue HT leads are here and all brand new.
Is there any reason why an Imps engine should use the 45D distributor, did I read that they were not as well made as the 25D version?

I do not fancy the HT leads pointing skywards :(
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by The Nun » Wed Sep 04, 2019 8:03 am

African Imp wrote:
Wed Sep 04, 2019 7:08 am
Is there any reason why an Imps engine should use the 45D distributor, did I read that they were not as well made as the 25D version?
Answers you are looking for are in the workshop manual Roy.
The 45D distributor is smaller, less weight, has improved performance and reliability, reduced contact breaker noise, improved sealing against entry of dust, improved resistance to water splash.
All sounds really good as a selling point even if actually they werent so robustly made. I never had any problems using one on my 75 Sport for many years and thousands of miles and when I changed to a competition one for the 998 the one supplied by Chrysler without the advance was also a 45D type, that was used for many years without giving any trouble too. I use a 25D fitted now but only because its period for the age of the car I have.
Most of the problems now come from sub standard renewable service components you fit into them more than anything else.
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by Grahame59 » Wed Sep 04, 2019 10:45 am

African Imp wrote:
Mon Sep 02, 2019 6:23 am
So my next upgrade on the Californian will be to fit the correct heater control valve.
You'd be better off fitting the valve from a London Taxi TX1, as discussed in a previous Forum thread. Gives vastly better control, won't seize up like the original, and is an easy swap. They are readily available on eBay (UK) for around £15.
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by African Imp » Wed Sep 04, 2019 11:06 am

Grahame,

Thanks on your adivice but a london taxi part and ebay is a World away, plus the poor R.O.E we have not to mention a dubious postal service?

I have heard that a Landrover part will do the job?

Landrover parts can be bought here?
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by African Imp » Wed Sep 04, 2019 3:34 pm

Today I was at a motor factors to buy some wiper blades for two other vehicals, there was a large advert on the counter for Denso spark plugs, I asked Riaan the salesman re price?

He was not able to quote me as they have no stock, this was pending the facto that the W20TT plug covers so many other makes of spark plugs and that NGK say it is not possible to do this?

Has anyone had the same advice?
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by 617sqn » Wed Sep 04, 2019 6:17 pm

That looks like an Iridium jobbie. Yes, some manufacturers quote a particular plug covering multiple uses. In my opinion that can't be considered correct, otherwise all other manufacturers wouldn't bother developing and testing alternative plugs. One size does not fit all.

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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by African Imp » Thu Sep 05, 2019 5:55 am

Denso spark plug type W20TT, I think Moose of Century Motorsport has been testing them?
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by moose » Thu Sep 05, 2019 6:23 pm

There are good 43/45 distributors and bad. The good ones have a screw under the rotor arm holding the two shafts and a screw in baseplate. The bad ones can have a screw in baseplate but a plastic top hat arrangement to keep the shafts together and even worse one is the original fitment to the later imps that had a split baseplate that was located by a self tapping screw in a slit cut in the baseplate to wedge it in distributor. The caps on all 43/45 d dizzys do not fit and locate as well as the 23/25 which is important on a competition car hence why my developed ignition system for the 43D dizzy has a bolt on cap. Unfortunately this is a side exit cap for push on leads so the engine has to be built with the oil pump and dizzy engaement in the correct orientation to allow clearance between alternator/dynamo and engine mount.

It was a long time ago i tried the Denso plugs two failures put me off rather quickly might of been bad luck or a bad batch but either way i have never had an NGK fail so long as you do not by them online unless from a reputable supplier.
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by moose » Fri Sep 06, 2019 6:07 am

I do not fancy the HT leads pointing skywards :(


I can make you plug leads to suit your car no problem 90 degree on plug 90 degree on cap. Made from competition spec material (do not read that as not required for a road car as first and foremost in motorsport is reliability) 50 ohm resistance cable with superior rubber boots. £65 inc UK delivery for a set of 5 leads
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by moose » Fri Sep 06, 2019 6:10 am

Regards Moose
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by African Imp » Fri Sep 06, 2019 6:37 am

One of the very acceptable spanners that I was recently gifted is a Stahlwille design and made in Germany, it is just over six inches long, so handy for tight spaces, it fits 3/4" and 5/8" so suitable for various nuts and bolts on the Imp.

The logo on the spanner says " Stronger than any bolt " :D

As pictured it is on the wrong side the the engine support bolt, I used a longer wrench for the nut.
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by The Nun » Fri Sep 06, 2019 8:22 am

It looks very similar to my IMP spanners 8)
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by African Imp » Fri Sep 06, 2019 2:29 pm

The Nun, those are Gedore make spanners?

Gedore is or was the most popular brand name in the RSA as it was a well made spanner and produced here, I think today the flood of other brands from overseas may have dented the Gedore share of the market?

That large spanner reminds me of the one I had for the rear wheel hub nut circa 1970 / 1975, it went with the race car when I went sailing.

I did however keep the vernier and dial gauge that were both required for setting the R20 cam up on the cylinder head :D
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by The Nun » Fri Sep 06, 2019 2:31 pm

They're Bedford make Roy, the big one I use for the rear hub nuts, and the small one for the contact breakers.
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by African Imp » Sat Sep 07, 2019 6:20 am

The Nun, Bedford ? is that a name that I can remember from when I was Imping in Maghull, nr Liverpool and up to October 1968 after which I moved to Cape Town, RSA?

I do have a suitable small Gedore 5/16" spanner here for doing distributor points, I will be using it this morning when I change from an early to a later Sport distributor.

The early one came from a known Imp parts supplier and many years back, it was only by accident that I discovered that it had Mk2 internals and that the center shaft had been fitted some 180 degrees out!
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by African Imp » Sat Sep 07, 2019 6:29 am

I have more than the one Sport distributor, the one in the cars enginne now was the earlier type and marked 41122a, a later one is marked 41190b, that one was discovered at a jumble sale and was new, a club member saw it, bought it and later sold it to myself.

The springs inside I have to assume are correct, the number 17 on the balance weights will be.

The springs must be measured by the amount of coils and wire diameter, lenght etc?
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by African Imp » Sun Sep 08, 2019 7:00 am

One of the Imp part sets that I have taken over is a 45D distributor, the first such set that I have had my hands on.

I will clean the metal parts and reassemble it as a spare, if the 45D was fitted to the later Imp engines I assume it was better?

The rotor is by Distributor Doctor, the leads are branded Commecial Ignition, are they any good?
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by The Nun » Sun Sep 08, 2019 7:28 am

African Imp wrote:
Sun Sep 08, 2019 7:00 am

if the 45D was fitted to the later Imp engines I assume it was better?
Cheaper you can bet on that, so not necessarily better in a material way.
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by African Imp » Sun Sep 08, 2019 7:37 am

The Nun wrote:
Sun Sep 08, 2019 7:28 am
African Imp wrote:
Sun Sep 08, 2019 7:00 am

if the 45D was fitted to the later Imp engines I assume it was better?
Cheaper you can bet on that, so not necessarily better in a material way.
The forum quotes that a similar code number 45D distributor was also to be found on the Triumph Spitfire, but produced to a higher quality?
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Re: A Californian drying out in South Africa

Post by African Imp » Sun Sep 08, 2019 7:43 am

I found a HT cable test https://www.pistonheads.com/gassing/topic.asp?t=1436844

Commercial Ignition cables are said to be bog standard and at the lower end of the available quality?
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