Thursday, 9 October 2014

February 2014. Blue car - New engine story begins

Sorry but its been a while since my last entry but I got a bit sidetracked by life, its got a habit of getting in the way of doing things on the car.

Anyway, in February 2014 I mentioned on the TR7 and Dolomite forums that I would have a standard 2.0 litre engine and stainless exhaust for sale. Almost immediately a guy from Brighton with a Toledo got in touch and wanted the engine, and a Welsh chap wanted the exhaust. Problem was it was all still in the car. Big rush over the weekend and the stuff was on the garage floor ready for collection.
No going back now!


 I had already sourced a running Sprint engine from a very rusty Sprint automatic and that has been stored in the back of the garage for the past year.  The plan was to rebuild it with some mods to give it a bit more power. Turns out the engine had been rebuilt after some kind of mechanical "accident". the block and bottom end were excellent but the head had been damaged in no.4 chamber.

No.4 chamber on the left has material missing below the exhaust valves

Then I was offered an engine with a stage 2 head, fast road cam, twin Weber manifold and very little use - I was tempted.
Having decided to go for the Stage 2 engine I collected it from near Heathrow and had to dodge the floods all around the area, remember that?   I obviously intended to give it a good look over before using it and turns out it was a very good job I did.

Stage 2 engine looking good
Still looking good.
OK, this is not so good.
No pad on the tensioner!
TR7 8 valve pistons.
Well as you can see from the pictures the stage 2 engine turned out to be a nightmare. Whoever had built the engine was no kind of engineer or mechanic.  Every part I took off showed evidence of zero mechanical sympathy.
To list just a few of the things I found:- There were huge amounts of a black sealer which had hardened and got everywhere as you can see from the build up in the sump. The engine had an electric water pump conversion but the adapter fittings had been bodged. The timing chain tensioner had lost its rubber pad and the pistons were standard 8 valve TR7 ones.
The head and cam seemed OK, with some cleaning up of the ports. Enquiries revealed the head had been done by S&S so should be good. The cam was a Kent Cams DMS1 which is a fast road profile but was a re-profiled one so will need thicker shims.

So, decision time, what to do.  The best idea seemed to be to simply use the best parts of both engines, the bottom end from the rusty Sprint auto with the head and cam from the stage 2 engine. The moving parts were all dropped off at Maynard Engineering to be balanced and all was going well until I discovered some slight water damage in the block where I had kept it on its side for the past year or so. Obviously a small amount of water had got into the chamber - bugger!  The marks were just too deep to polish out so that cylinder would now need a liner.  this meant the block now went down to Maynards as well.
Water damage in block. Too deep to polish out.

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