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View Full Version : VIN 11596 Frame Swap - a rolling frame-off restoration



82DMC12
07-19-2022, 06:04 PM
I'm going to document my upcoming frame swap here. You could call it a "rolling frame-off" since my strategy over the last year has been to refurbish, upgrade, or replace every single part that touches the frame... all while keeping the car as drivable as possible so that my time with the frame actually removed is minimized. I know this job will go a lot faster if I'm swapping over good, restored parts from my old frame to the new frame rather than having my car laid up in pieces for months while waiting for this or that to get refinished, machine work done, waiting for out of stock parts, etc. I have a typical suburban two-car garage which I know is more than some have done it with, but as a new dad with a baby boy (and actually married only 18 months ago!) I have family and career commitments that don't really allow me to spend tons of time in the garage anymore. At the same time, my frame needs attention so I think this rolling restoration has been going quite well so far and it's made me well-prepared for the frame swap.

My car is a 1982 with the "two-tone" (black seats/dash with light soft gray carpets) interior, manual transmission, and stock engine but with Stage 1 exhaust. I've owned the car for 22 years now (bought it when I was 18 and a freshman in college) which means I have restored and serviced MOST of the car during that time and now I'm coming around to re-restoring some parts like brakes and clutch hydraulics that I already did once!

It wasn't long after I bought my car that I learned it was one of the "black undercoated cars" - these cars were starting to experience chassis rust while sitting at the docks waiting to ship out to the USA, so the story goes that DMC employees drove the cars to an undercoating shop and sprayed everything down with this thick, tar-like coating to cover up and prevent further damage. The undercoating was mostly limited to the underside of the frame itself and the front suspension though you could find over spray and areas of it all over the fuel accumulator, water pipes, transmission area, trailing arms, etc. Unfortunately as most have learned, the undercoating was prone to trapping moisture between the undercoating and epoxy and probably did more harm than good 10 to 20 years later. Many small bolts like M6 or smaller break off easily because the undercoating just wrecked them.

I have some interesting areas of frame rust and damage which I will document later. Much of it is in the front frame extension, under the rear upper links, the engine cradle, and where the passenger side water pipe is attached to the rear frame. The fuel tank area has a lot of peeling epoxy from brake or clutch leakage prior to my ownership. The edges of frame flanges and such show separation of the thin layers. The front crossmember has a hole in it from an errant floor jack. There may be more damage than I'm aware of but generally frames rot from the bottom up so I think I have a good idea on what's going on. I think this car definitely needs the frame removed to do a good job repairing it.

At first I was thinking I would have to remove the frame and deliver it to a fab shop for sand blasting, welding and repair, galvanizing, and then powder coating. Then, last year, it became known to me that another owner about 90 minutes away had a spare frame that he had already restored and coated with gray POR15 before he picked up a Pearce stainless frame and decided to use that instead! I went over to go see the frame and we made a deal - and since then I've had it stored in the warehouse at my work.

Only two problems - the frame needs a top coat applied (POR 15 isn't UV safe) and it's an automatic transmission frame. A top coat will require some elbow grease but the auto frame isn't much of a problem. In fact just today I received my shift plate adapter that was designed by Martin Gutkowski! I sent the DXF file to Xometry.com and two weeks later had it in my hands.


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SupercoolBill
07-19-2022, 06:19 PM
Following!

Sent from my SM-F926U1 using Tapatalk

82DMC12
07-19-2022, 06:31 PM
Here's a picture of my "new" auto frame which I'll be taking home in August and sanding it with 120 grit to take the sheen off of the POR15 and rough it up for a top coat. I visited Josh at DPI a few weeks ago where we talked about frames and he suggested adding a hardening agent, about 8 drops per quart of paint (Rustoleum Smoke Gray) and then applied with a spray gun. Maybe two or three thin layers should do it. I expect I'll have to run a tap through all the threaded holes but that's no problem.

Once the frame is prepped I'm going to get two or three other owners over to my house to drop the frame out where I think I'll be able to pretty quickly strip it and re-assess what else needs to be addressed before assembly. More on that in the next update.

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82DMC12
07-19-2022, 06:45 PM
Oh by the way, here is the hole in the frame where the auto shifter goes. It's about 2" deeper than the deck that the manual shifter sits in on a manual frame. The new plate that I got sits on top of the manual frame and is attached to the frame through the slotted holes. Then, there are three spacers stacked up over each M6 threaded hole in the plate. They are held in place with threaded rod that I'll buy from Belmetric. Then, the manual shifter is attached to the threaded rod on top of the spacers. The spacers are each 1/2" thick so with the plate installed, there's the 2 inch difference.

You still need to drill out a hole for the crossgate cable and you have to slightly bend the frame flange in the transmission area to make room for the shift lever. Looking forward to getting this fitted!

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SupercoolBill
07-19-2022, 10:40 PM
Looks awesome. I'm jealous. I was supposed to be putting a deposit on my frame but communication has stopped between the seller and me so I am not sure if he got a better offer or what.

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Helirich
07-20-2022, 10:55 AM
Sub’d

82DMC12
07-21-2022, 07:04 PM
My rolling frame-swap started last fall with a full front and rear suspension refurbishment. I had not had to do much with the suspension in my 20 years of ownership except for replacing the sway bar front bushings when I replaced my radiator many years back. All of my bushings were in good shape. The previous owner of my car had just been through a full brake rebuild before I bought the car so aside from adding stainless brake hoses and maybe a set of front pads, I had not had to do much with the brakes either. I'm embarrassed to say I probably only flushed the brakes twice in 20 years. So, it was time to do a full rebuild again.

Once I had the brakes and suspension removed, I sent the calipers, rear hubs, horn brackets, and all other brackets and hardware including suspension pivot bolts and washers to DMCMW for plating. They have a great partner nearby who cleans the parts and yellow-zinc plates everything. So you send a bunch of dirty crap and a couple weeks later you end up with this:

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For the rear trailing arms, I delivered them to a machine shop who put them in the oven and hot tank cleaned them to get the old epoxy off. I then treated them with POR15 degreaser, Metal Prep, and then two coats of Grey POR15. I used a long small brush on a stick to paint the inside of the arms. Same machine shop cleaned the rear carriers which are bare aluminum (no epoxy). I had them press out the old rear bearings and install a set of new SKF bearings and then press in the outer axle. I painted the carriers with POR15 as well so they would match the arms.

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[ Trailing arms after machine shop cleaning and POR 15 degreaser and metal prep. Rear lower links restored and ready to go! ]

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[ Trailing arms after painting with POR 15 ]


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[ Rear hubs with new bearings, painted with POR 15, and new outer axle nuts ready for installation ]



The lower links were refurbished by painterdave72 who is another local Kansas City owner. He powder coated the arms and pressed in new OEM-style rubber bushings.

82DMC12
08-08-2022, 12:07 PM
Not much to report at the moment however I have set aside September 3 - 11 as vacation time at work so I can do the first half of the frame swap. I'm going to try to get three or four friends and other owners over to my house to help lift the body off the frame, roll out the chassis with engine, then use a cherry picker (going to buy a Harbor Freight hoist) to lift out the engine, separate the trans from it, and mount the engine to a stand which I already own from the first time I pulled out the engine. Then during that week I plan to strip all the parts off the old frame and assess what gets re-used, and what gets replaced.

Prior to all this, though, I need to finish prepping my new frame. I may have mentioned it's already been coated in POR15 gray, but it doesn't have a top coat on it. I've had about a 50/50 response from other owners and body shop guys who say the frame needs a top coat. The debate is because the frame isn't directly exposed to the sun and it's garage-kept. However I've heard enough stories about the POR15 getting "chalky" from UV that I think I want to top coat it. Maybe UV bounces in ways that visible light does not?

Anyway, I talked to a local body shop because I was thinking I could rough up the frame myself in the garage and then deliver it to a shop to get a top coat like Rustoleum Smoke Gray sprayed onto it. But then this guy I talked to, who restores Chevelles, dune buggies, etc told me about POR15 2K Urethane which they advertise as an industrial top coat. It's UV-resistant, 2-part catalyzed, clear, and chemical resistant so a fuel leak or brake fluid leak won't wreck the finish. And, it can brushed on so I wouldn't have to take the frame anywhere. I'm really leaning towards this option unless I can find a good reason why not.

Looks like I will be bringing the frame home (it's currently in storage at my office warehouse) sometime in the next two weeks to get started!

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82DMC12
08-12-2022, 12:18 PM
I've been doing a bit more research and prep on my top-coat project for the frame. I called POR15 tech support and got some good advice on using the 2k Urethane. They suggested thinning it a bit with the POR15 Solvent (or xylene) and brushing it on. It will leave brush marks at first but ignore them and it will thin out as it dries. They said it's best to put a very thin later on and don't keep going over it to try to get the brush marks out. It all works out in the end. Guess we'll see!

I need to scuff the frame first with a red scotch brite pad. I grabbed one from the auto paint store that carries the 2K and tried it out on my frame. It took very little effort to take the gloss off the current layer. I'm sure I could do the whole frame in less than 2 hours by hand.

Anyway, the plan now is to bring the frame home in a couple weeks, get it in the garage, scuff it up, put the top coat on (still haven't decided between clear or another layer of light gray 2K Urethane), and then chase all the threads with taps and cutting oil. Then I'll test fit the new shifter plate and drill the hole for the crossgate cable.

Here's a picture showing a scuffed spot in the center. The frame is dusty from my work warehouse so I'll pressure wash it before working on it in my garage.

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82DMC12
08-21-2022, 09:48 PM
Two weeks until Frame-Out Day!

I've been gathering up the last of my tools required for the big day including:

Harbor Freight 1 ton engine hoist (snagged for $199 on sale)
https://www.harborfreight.com/1-ton-capacity-foldable-shop-crane-61858.html

QTY (4) scissor jacks
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B004PX8BC2?psc=1&ref=ppx_yo2ov_dt_b_product_details

QTY (4) wheel skates which I think I'll need to line up the chassis with the body when re-installing
https://www.harborfreight.com/2-piece-1500-lb-capacity-vehicle-dollies-67338.html

I still have an engine stand from the last time I had the engine out and a couple furniture dollies which will help with moving frames around during the tear-down and build-up process.

All I need now are QTY (2) 4x4 8 foot wood beams and about QTY (40) 8x4x16 concrete blocks. Might also get an air impact gun to aid in fastener removal. Why work hard when you have power??

Later this week I plan to bring my new frame home to my garage and next weekend I'll scrub it with red scotchbrite, rinse it off with plain water, let it dry outside, and then bring it back in for a coating of the POR15 2K clear urethane top coat I mentioned earlier. I think I'll do one coat on the whole frame and two coats on anything you can see from under the car which will help with rock chips.

Only other snag I have at this point is the car is not actually DRIVEABLE due to a leaking slave cylinder. I've been waiting on a rebuild from PJ Grady but the cores took a long time to get plated. They are now en route to me so sadly I'll have to put the new cylinders in just so I can take it to a shop to get the A/C evacuated. Then bring it right home and drain the clutch LOL. Ah well. A waste of a quart of clutch fluid I guess.

Stay tuned, things start to accelerate now!

82DMC12
08-26-2022, 05:27 PM
Big day today!

I suppose this is the first day of my frame swap. I've been storing the frame in the warehouse at my office since spring 2021. Today a couple coworkers helped me load it up onto a rented flatbed pickup from Home Depot (the kind that you can rent for $19 the first 75 minutes) and we brought it home to my house and parked it in the garage on a furniture dolly.

The frame weighs around 240 lbs but two people can fairly easily pick it up and maneuver it. I am going to want to flip it upside down sometimes while working on it though so I'm planning to use my engine hoist and a nylon strap to assist with picking it up, flipping it over, and setting it back down again.

I also have some new parts received today - a clutch master cylinder and a clutch slave cylinder, both rebuilt by PJ Grady which I actually want to get put in this weekend. Hopefully I can also get at least one coat of the 2K Urethane brushed onto the new frame so it has plenty of time to cure before I start moving the frame around while installing new parts on it.

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82DMC12
08-28-2022, 12:08 AM
Day Two of my frame swap....

Last night I started scuffing up the frame in preparation for applying the top coat. It also gave me a chance to check the work of the guy who restored the frame in great detail. I like what I see, the POR15 was sprayed on and while it sometimes transitions from a gloss finish to having a bit of a rough feel, the POR15 is very well applied and solid. The front crossmember has a stainless plate welded to the bottom and then covered in POR15 - I can only detect it by using a magnet. I like that it reinforces an area on my own frame that is in very bad shape (floor jack pushed up and broke through the middle trapezoid section). The only issues I see are a couple of extremely minor spots where the frame was probably on the floor and scratched the POR15 back to the metal, and a few drips/runs that would interfere with fitment of other parts. A wire wheel on an air powered die grinder flattens them no problem. I have a few ounces of gray POR15 remaining from last year (yes it is still liquid!) so no issues doing a bit of touch up to the base coat.

Today I was able to get some more red scotch brite pads (best to get them at auto body paint shops) and alternated between using my blue blending pad handle for large flat areas and then just free-handing a piece of pad in the corners and small areas. I tended to do a cross-hatch pattern with the handle and swirls with the free pieces. I probably went through about 20 of the large pads.

After that I assembled my 1-ton Harbor Freight shop hoist and then used that to help flip the frame over so I could scuff up the bottom. Then, I bungee-tied a furniture dolly to the rear of the frame so I could wheel it out of the garage and halfway down the driveway so I could rinse it off with the garden hose and wash mitt. Once back in the garage I did my touch-ups and then drilled out a few small holes in the frame that the paint that filled in slightly when it was done a few years ago. I also ran a 1/2" bit through the front suspension attachment points so that I'm sure there isn't any paint in the tubes. I know I'll have to run a tap through all the threaded holes as I attach parts but that was to be expected.

Tomorrow I should be able to get a coat of top coat on the bottom of the frame. I'll have to wait for it to cure before I can flip the frame over again and do the top which I'm less concerned about overall.

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82DMC12
08-28-2022, 09:12 PM
Day 3 -

Today went as well as I could have hoped. My goal was to top coat the underside of the frame as well as the sides and anything else I can easily reach without flipping the frame over. The 2K Urethane is mixed 3 parts Urethane ("Part A") and 1 part Activator ("Part B"). The paint shop gave me a stack of clear paint mixing cups which I had to learn how to use by watching this video:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hwxs_lgNGaM

They worked perfectly and I mixed up only about 2 oz of paint at a time because the pot life is not very long. I wanted to make sure I had even viscosity the whole way through so it made sense to work in small batches. The urethane brushes on very nicely and it was easy to tell what I had painted and what I had not by using a strong LED work lamp. After about three hours I had painted everything I could so after clean-up I called it a day. About six hours later I came out to check on it and the first section I did was drying nicely with only a bit of "finger drag" while touching the surface.

I only bought the 1-quart kit because the paint shop assured me I could paint the whole frame with it - I think they are right. I've only used less than half of the product but I'm probably 70% finished already. Goes to show how thin the urethane spreads when applied.

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82DMC12
08-30-2022, 12:00 PM
Day 4 -

I came home from work and found the frame was dry enough to flip over so I could get on with top coating the top side of the frame. The shop hoist came in handy as a very strong third arm to lift it up, roll it, and drop it back down onto a furniture dolly (just realized I need to buy another one for rolling around my old frame at some point....). An hour later I was done brushing it on and admiring my work. I found one chip on the bottom edge that I will have to repair but that's OK because I do have a few oz of gray POR15 leftover. The trick here is to sand down the surrounding area until it is feathered out, clean it well with degreaser, brush a bit of POR 15 metal prep on it if you have any, and then once that dries, brush the POR15 over the spot. Might take two or three thin coats to build it up to the same thickness as the surrounding area.

My list for the week leading up to this weekend's frame-off party is:

1) Need QTY (2) 4"x4" x 8 ft posts which the body will rest on for the next month
2) Need QTY (40) 4x8x16 flat cinder blocks which will be slowly added as the body lifts off the frame
3) Need to do as much as possible in regards to draining all fluids and disconnecting "stuff" from the old frame. There's a great checklist here (https://dmctalk.org/showthread.php?14602-How-To-Body-and-Frame-Separation-Checklist) that I will use as a guide and I will also update it with anything I find that was missed, or any good advice I have that others can learn from. I might also make a Google Drive version of this so others can download it and print it , already formatted, in the future.

Looking at the checklist, I see no issues because I have already addressed literally every point on there at some point in the last 20 years! The only wild card will be if any of the body bolts are hung up or won't spin out.

Here's a picture of the frame as it stands last night as well as the chip that needs touch up.

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82DMC12
08-31-2022, 01:29 PM
Day 5

Not much done yesterday because of work-family-car balance. I looked at my auto-to-manual adapter plate and checked to make sure the slotted holes line up. All good. I'll have to order some M6 threaded rod once I know exactly how long I want it. That's what holds the spacers and shifter to the adapter plate.

Moved the DeLorean on skates towards the center of the garage so I can start the process of draining fluids and disconnecting everything. I might have time tonight to get started on this. In the meantime, trying to follow up on parts orders that are pending so I can prioritize what gets done next week while I'm off work.

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82DMC12
09-01-2022, 09:39 AM
Day 6

Only a couple more days before I have 11 days straight free to work on this thing, but only two days before the "frame out party". Might as well get started a bit early. Tonight I removed the seats and trailing arm shields. Drained out most of the gas tank using a battery-powered transfer pump (was going to put the gas in my wife's car but of course she just filled up today). I then drained a good amount of coolant out by opening the radiator petcock drain as well as removing both rubber coolant connections near the transmission. I know there is still coolant in the heater core and the engine block but we'll get to that eventually.

I also used a Motive power bleeder to drain and blow out all four brake lines.

I've started to make a list of all fasteners I will be replacing. I like to use Belmetric.com. So far they have everything I've needed and the prices and shipping is fair. McMaster Carr would be another option of course. I'll be replacing every nut, washer, and bolt that I remove from this car. I've already done this with everything suspension related (well, actually I sent a lot of those fasteners out to get cleaned and re-plated) so there isn't THAT much more that needs to be replaced in terms of the frame. I'll probably replace all the hardware that holds the transmission casing together though.

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DMC-Ron
09-02-2022, 06:26 AM
Andy,
That's a heck of a beam. I assume you measured to insure you have the required clearance.

Keep up the posts. This has been fun following along.

Ron

82DMC12
09-02-2022, 08:46 AM
Andy,
That's a heck of a beam. I assume you measured to insure you have the required clearance.

Keep up the posts. This has been fun following along.

RonHaha oh yeah. That last photo is ultra wide angle from up high so probably skews dimensions too. And the car is high up on jack stands. I estimate the body must be no higher than 32" off the ground to get the chassis out as per this video:

https://youtu.be/j-AmAyELV8s

That's only like 2.5 feet taller than the car is, anyway and I have plenty of room getting my Q5 SUV in the garage.

Will post actual measurements after this weekend, that's when stuff gets good!

Sent from my Pixel 6a using Tapatalk

Helirich
09-02-2022, 10:03 PM
This is going to be a good thread during those eleven days! Wish I was closer. Would be fun to give you a hand.

Good luck.

82DMC12
09-02-2022, 11:37 PM
This is going to be a good thread during those eleven days! Wish I was closer. Would be fun to give you a hand.

Good luck.

I wish! I'm trying to include some local owners in the Frame Party. Should be a good time!

82DMC12
09-02-2022, 11:48 PM
Day 7

Not a lot of progress on the car ITSELF today but I had to get some ducks in a row prior to Frame Drop Day. I had to work until noon and I'm on Daddy Duty as of 6:00 PM

Stopped by Harbor Freight to grab another furniture dolly and some orange hand cleaner. Menards for some Shop Towels (6 pack of course). Walmart for water, gatorade, and soda for the Frame Party. Picked up BBQ at Oklahoma Joes for dinner for the wife and I.

Actual car stuff done this afternoon:


Removed the center console
Removed the four body bolts along the center tunnel as well as the seat belt latches.
Remove radiator fan shroud
Removed lower speedo cable from angle drive and lambda counter and then pushed it up into the driver floor inside
Drained engine oil and manual trans oil and dropped it off at Autozone


That's about it. I still need to get 15 more bricks and two 4x4 beams. Tomorrow gets serious as it's my first day of vacation and I should be able to get a ton done uninterrupted!

82DMC12
09-05-2022, 10:08 AM
Day 8

This was a big day and about halfway through I knew I was at a point of no return. I printed off this checklist and put it in a clipboard:

https://dmctalk.org/showthread.php?14602-How-To-Body-and-Frame-Separation-Checklist

I intentionally followed it in order and made sure every move I made was already documented, and if not, I wrote it in the margin. I probably found a half dozen other disconnections or other warnings / recommendations as I went. I'll be updating that checklist with more detail and sharing it with everyone eventually.

The whole checklist went remarkably smooth, scary in fact, but not really surprising since virtually every point in the list I've already touched or worked on in my ownership so I knew that it will, indeed, come apart! And I had the tools needed to do it.

The only part I could not get was the smaller pipe that attaches to the evaporator simply because there was very limited access for wrenches. I can't remember how I did it before. Luckily I was able to disconnect the sight glass downstream and that avoided the issue for now.

I had silicone plugs and caps of various sizes from Amazon which came in real handy to plug off stuff I don't want to get dirty or moisture inside.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07HFZLYYC?psc=1&ref=ppx_yo2ov_dt_b_product_details
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08GPJJRY5?psc=1&ref=ppx_yo2ov_dt_b_product_details

I started at about 7 AM and was finished around 3AM. The only thing I did not do was removing the rear bumper and the engine cover since I wanted extra hands to assist me with it. Note that the engine cover doesn't have to come off but I'm going to have another owner in Kansas City help with refinishing it while I have the time.

Here's the sight glass junction I removed while the aluminum pipe above it stayed on the evaporator pipe. Debating if I should remove it to change the o-ring or just let it sit there undisturbed! I obviously had it off a few (maybe 7?) years ago so it's definitely not damaged or anything. Thoughts??

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Helirich
09-05-2022, 11:41 AM
I’ve not seen a sight glass on a car before. It looks just like one on a walk-in freezer at my wife’s restaurant. Is that something you installed? I suppose the wet/dry indicator is toast. I still like them.

82DMC12
09-05-2022, 11:58 AM
I’ve not seen a sight glass on a car before. It looks just like one on a walk-in freezer at my wife’s restaurant. Is that something you installed? I suppose the wet/dry indicator is toast. I still like them.

Good point, not sure if it's toast or not. It came from John Hervey because that is the air conditioning kit I installed a few years back. To be honest if it's toast I don't really care as long as the switch still works!

82DMC12
09-05-2022, 12:23 PM
Day 9

FRAME PARTY DAY!!

First of all, I want to thank the following super cool owners and friends who helped make today happen - painterdave72 (David Hudgins), Matthew Mangels and his son Elijah, Alvin Erhart and his son Johnny, Joey, and my wife for baking the cookies!

Today went extremely well and the process was straight-forward and well-planned for mostly thanks to Andy Orton's excellent youtube video

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j-AmAyELV8s

We basically did EXACTLY what is shown in this video and had zero issue lifting the body off and rolling out the chassis. We used EXACTLY 40 4x8x16 hollow concrete bricks ($1.27 each at Sutherlands) and two 4x4x8ft wood beams. I debated getting 10 ft beams for extra width but it turned out that 8 foot is very doable and what I would recommend if working in a home garage where you need to minimize lost floor space during the restoration.

What to do with the bricks and beams when I'm done? Not sure. This like 1,400 lbs of brick which took 4 trips in my SUV to pick up so I'd rather someone just come get them when I'm done. I'm sure I can get rid of them fast-ish on Marketplace.

Anyway everyone arrived around 9:30 AM and we pretty quickly went to work removing the fascia and then disconnecting the shift linkage and crossgate from the transmission so we wouldn't have to monkey with it topside later on. By 11 AM we were ready to lift the body up. I shared the Andy Orton video with everyone on our facebook chat a few days prior so they had an idea of we will do. We had one man on each corner manning a scissor jack and about three people walking around and spotting to make sure nothing is getting caught. Generally we lifted up together as a team, turning the jack three revolutions before stopping to confirm all is good. As soon as we could add a new brick to the support stack we did so. We had to let the body back down to the support stack four times so we could add another brick under the jack to get more vertical lift. And back and forth we went until we had the beams under the body (making sure not to hit the M6 studs sticking down to secure the trailing arm shields) and then lifted high enough to get the shift lever and radiator rolling underneath and out. I think we had the chassis out by 12:30 PM.

After a pizza break the next task was to lift out the engine and transmission from the old frame. We had to do that in the driveway and thankfully there was cloud cover most of the time or it would have been a hot, sweaty ordeal. It took a couple hours to remove the exhaust from the engine (DMCH Stage 1 installed about 15 years ago) and then a bit longer to remove the transmission mounts from the transmission and frame. After that, the engine came out fairly easily but at an odd angle because I didn't have a load leveler for the hoist.

At that point it was mid afternoon and about time for most to get back home. We pushed the hoist and drivetrain into the garage and then pushed the old frame back under the body after removing the radiator and shifter.

Only casualties that I can see so far is a scratch on my water pump pulley and the little finger on the throttle that hits the full throttle switch came off of the spool but I think I can solder that back on no problem. I'd call that a success!

https://youtu.be/7pbMs8lQfrs

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82DMC12
09-05-2022, 09:32 PM
Day 10

Might not look like I got a ton done today but I really did. First, I got the garage organized again and my tools and cleaned and put away where they belong.

Then I took apart the radiator/fans/condenser so I could assess my leaking radiator. It's a DMCH radiator only about 7 years old but there's a very tiny seep somewhere near the petcock but behind the fan shroud. I took it apart but didn't see any obvious leak besides coolant exactly where I thought I'd find it. However I did see the mounting stud and square captivating thing on the same side is bent quite a bit. Looking at the radiator bracket, that's also bent. I know I didn't strike anything but maybe it was already bent and I tightened the radiator down to match the bent bracket. And that put stress somewhere in the radiator in that spot. Anyway, I'm bringing it in to a radiator shop tomorrow for an assessment.

Next, I tried to find a transmission jack for rental - no one open today on Labor Day. Also the muffler shop I wanted to go to to get my Stage 1 exhaust separated from the muffler was also closed (we couldn't get it apart even with a torch but I know those exhaust guys know exactly what to do). That will be first thing tomorrow.

Then, I decided to chase all the threaded holes in the new frame. I made a list as I went so I'll make a google doc to share with everyone. The only threads I didn't get to was the two SAE holes - the seatbelt mounting hole and the rear upper control arm hole. I don't have standard taps so I'll have to grab them tomorrow.

After that, I rolled the old frame out halfway from under the
car and removed all the rest of the internal parts - the accumulator, shift linkage, and crossgate cable. No big surprises there but the shift linkage needs to be powder coated badly.

Finally, I started to actually DRESS THE NEW FRAME. I put all the frame clips I had into the frame but have some questions... The driver side pair of vacuum pipes are different sizes and it doesn't seem like the white twin clips I bought will work for them, so I need to check with the vendors on that. I attached the heater cores pipes (new NOS) so that was pretty cool. I also have some new NOS fuel pipes so I set them down on my old frame to double check and make sure they are correct. I have new olives and swivel nuts so everything on the fuel side will be new but I'm re-using the vacuum pipes because they don't really go bad. Also very big and expensive to ship.

I have a big order on the way from DeLorean Industries but until then, I still have PLENTY to do.... stay tuned tomorrow. Need to drop off exhaust, parts for powder coating, get a transmission jack, drop off radiator, and then probably drop the fuel tank out and start assembling fuel pipes.

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Helirich
09-05-2022, 10:13 PM
Good point, not sure if it's toast or not. It came from John Hervey because that is the air conditioning kit I installed a few years back. To be honest if it's toast I don't really care as long as the switch still works!

The sight glass is still useful even if the wet/dry part doesn’t work. When operating, it should not have any bubbles.

On you blocks, technically you should have not stack them that way. You would probably done better (safer) to get ordinary 8x8x16 blocks and stack them with holes vertical. But I’m sure your fine with the weight of the body.

Great work so far! Very exciting!

82DMC12
09-05-2022, 10:33 PM
The sight glass is still useful even if the wet/dry part doesn’t work. When operating, it should not have any bubbles.

On you blocks, technically you should have not stack them that way. You would probably done better (safer) to get ordinary 8x8x16 blocks and stack them with holes vertical. But I’m sure your fine with the weight of the body.

Great work so far! Very exciting!

Yeah, I don't know. I was at the lumber yard looking at them and trying to decide if I should get the solid blocks or the hollow blocks. The hollow blocks sure are a lot easier to maneuver. I tried to Google it and it looked like they could hold something like 1300 PSI. I'm sure it's technically not correct but it seems to be ok.... So far!

Helirich
09-06-2022, 11:54 AM
I’ve heard the best way to stack blocks is vertical holes with a piece of 3/4” plywood between each block. But again, you don’t really have much weight on your blocks.

Are you going to make the back cross tube removable? I understand a lot of people do it and it makes remove/install the engine much easier. I’ve not seen pics, but I think they just have it bolt on with a couple pieces of angle iron. Seems like it would be easy for you to do it now. I don’t think the “non stock” issue would bother most people. You could probably do it somewhat “stealth”.

82DMC12
09-06-2022, 07:21 PM
Day 11

Today was a good day. I started out by rounding up all the parts I want to get powder coated so they can head on off to David Hudgins and he can get working on them. Parts to refinish include:



Both shift levers that go inside the frame (black)
Bracket that holds the crossgate cable to the transmission (cadmium yellow)
Both front radiator lower supports (cadmium)
Both front extension recall brackets (black)
Both rear fascia mounting brackets (black)
Three brackets that attach to the rear of the transmission and hold shift linkage / crossgate stuff as well as the little one on top that holds the clutch line to the transmission case (cadmium)
Mounting plate for the starter (black)
Two water pipe support brackets (cadmium)
The NLA "transmission cooler bracket" that goes onto the passenger side of the frame - now that was a bitch to take apart but I saved it (cadmium)


That's about it. There are no other brackets or small metal parts suitable for coating in this project that I haven't already done.

Next I took the radiator to a local shop to get an assessment on repairing it. They will get it to by next week.

Then I rented a transmission jack and in about 30 minutes I had the transmission separated from the engine and lowered to the floor level. Easy job with the right tools. I then used my new air impact gun to remove the bellhousing and end cap from the transmission (saving the 5th gear detent spring and ball of course).

The bellhousing has to go to a machine shop to get the clutch slave M7 mounting bolts removed - the heads snapped off. Also I found my clutch fork retaining piece is broken, so I'm on the hunt for a new clutch fork.

Does the ball come off of the bellhousing? I didn't mess with it too much.

Then I finished chasing the seatbelt bolt threads (SAE 7/16-20!) and then got about halfway through the SAE 1/2-20 rear upper link threads before I realized I need a much longer tap to do it, and a bottom tap would be best. So maybe I'll find it at Grainger or if not I'll order it online. But then I'll have every thread on the whole frame chased.

Tomorrow I will split the transmission open and give it an inspection. The casing is going to go to a vapor honing service to get refinished. Tomorrow I'll also remove the clutch and replace the rear main seal (leaking).

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82DMC12
09-08-2022, 03:13 AM
Day 12

Today started out with a call from the machine shop asking to confirm the correct thread for the bellhousing holes which contained the broken clutch slave screws. The threads are M7 x 1.0. They said the studs were tough to get out and they need to helicoil them. Makes me glad I didn't attempt to drill them out myself. Not long after they called and said it was done and I can come pick it up. But, first I wanted to get the flywheel off so I could have them machine it.

So, I sat down in front of my engine still hanging from the hoist and started to remove the clutch. Very easy with an air impact. Insert the clutch alignment tool, then remove the 6 allen cap screws holding the clutch on. The clutch came off and I was surprised (pleasantly?) that the clutch looks almost brand-new. There is tons of friction material and I'm inclined to re-use it if I can just source a new throwout bearing and pilot bearing.

When I withdrew the clutch, I was surprised to find the pilot bearing actually ON the alignment tool! Very odd, I was expecting to have to use a slide hammer or the "bread trick" to get the pilot out of the flywheel. This made me wonder if the bearing was just spinning in there... I see the bearing says CHINA on it. This was probably supplied with the Centerforce clutch but I can't be sure. Anyway, I set everything off to the side, zip off the flywheel, and head to the shop.

Once at the shop I informed them of the 0.020 step required on the wheel. We looked at the wheel and found... no step at all. The flywheel is flat all the way across from perimeter to center. Two shop guys came over to look and they agreed, wondering if I could be correct. We went on their computer and found the DMCH Knowledge Base article that mentions the step. We decided to wait a bit until I could sort this out.

On the way home I picked up anaerobic sealant, some GUNK foaming engine cleaners, and that Permatex gasket remover with the brush on the end of the can.

While driving I spoke with Toby Peterson whom I remember mentioning on the forums about the step. He agreed this was strange and was surprised my clutch was not slipping. After some debate we agreed that the best action is to "reset" everything back to factory by adding the step and replacing the clutch with a new Valeo kit. That way we know everything is exactly as it should be. It could be that the last shop that had my transmission out removed the step.... who knows. I don't like throwing away this Centerforce clutch but I don't know if it will work properly once put back together either with or without the step. Sometimes stuff works until you touch it, then you re-assemble it and it dies shortly after. I don't want that.

Once home, I wheeled the engine out to the driveway and gave the rear main seal area a good degreasing and scrub down so I can work on that task.

While that was drying I opened up the transmission which came apart no problem at all really. I was watching Nick Roedl's excellent Youtube series where he shows how to open the transmission. Mine is suspected to be leaking from the case halves due to the last shop, albeit nearly 20 years ago, using orange RTV instead of anaerobic sealant. So, I want to re-seal the transmission and get the casing media blasted. I got the differential and two shafts out pretty easily as well as the reverse gear. All I have left are the selector forks which are a bit scary because you need to tap out all of the roll pins and then try not to lose the detent balls and springs. That will be tomorrow!

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Mark D
09-08-2022, 12:39 PM
I'm following along and find the updates with the clutch and trans to be really interesting. I'm sure you're already aware, but when you go to reinstall the selector shaft roll pins, you'll want to add a reinforcement pin inside the standard pin. It's common for the 2nd gear roll pin to shear off, and it's an issue on my own car that I've yet to fix in my 15 years of ownership.

The main symptom is a mushy feel when downshifting from 3rd to 2nd gear as the selector slides past the pin, and then uses the spring on the other side to engage 2nd.

82DMC12
09-08-2022, 02:53 PM
I'm following along and find the updates with the clutch and trans to be really interesting. I'm sure you're already aware, but when you go to reinstall the selector shaft roll pins, you'll want to add a reinforcement pin inside the standard pin. It's common for the 2nd gear roll pin to shear off, and it's an issue on my own car that I've yet to fix in my 15 years of ownership.

The main symptom is a mushy feel when downshifting from 3rd to 2nd gear as the selector slides past the pin, and then uses the spring on the other side to engage 2nd.Great minds and all that. I have two sets of new roll pins with smaller backup pins. Finding that I don't already have those installed makes me feel like this transmission disassembly project is definitely worth it.

Sent from my Pixel 6a using Tapatalk

82DMC12
09-08-2022, 07:31 PM
Day 13

Today was cut short due to Daddy Duty. At about noon I got a call from the wife saying our son has a fever at daycare and needs to be picked up. So, I only got to work on the car this morning but I did good stuff that keeps the project moving along.

First I got to work on pulling out the rear main seal. No problem at all, especially when you've got power (air impact). The rear main LOOKS pretty good but I'm suspicious of the bottom surface of the seal house which was only sealed with black RTV. I think the corners may have been leaking.

I had a good call with Rob Grady where we discussed some of my observations over the last couple of days and gave me some reassurance all is well, though I continue to dive deep into this drivetrain!

I then set on to fully strip the transmission casings of all moving parts so I can get them vapor honed by a Rolls Royce shop in Independence, MO. There are two key challenges to removing the selector forks

1) You need to tap out all of the roll pins in order to remove the parts on the bars. Not that hard to do but you MUST have a 6mm punch (not common in sets, I bought it on Amazon) for the bigger pins.

2) There are springs and balls for the detents under each bar. The reverse one will pop out if you remove the reverse switch and then pull on the bar (found that out the hard way). The others will come out BUT you have to rotate the bar so that the ball can't push into the detents anymore and then slowly remove the bar while getting ready to catch the ball that's about to fly out. I did this by wadding up some bubble wrap and covering the area with one hand while pulling the bar out with the other. Nothing was lost!

The end cap is harder to do. There's a spring that captivates four half-bushings and the spring is too stiff to pull back with your fingers to expose the bushings. Rob says there's a special Renault tool for this but I was able to do it by progressively compressing coils with zip ties. It took about 45 minutes but I got it done. Then, you have to punch out the roll pins through the back of the housing by first removing a small M7 plug - and that's punch-out tube. Pretty neat. Also, I made great use of a couple of blue plastic body pry tools that I got in a set at Harbor Freight. This stuff is very easy to marr but the plastic tools will let you pry away without damage.

Anyway, got it all apart and headed out to the vapor honing shop.

What else.... Oh yeah, I got a pack of 50 M5 aluminum rivnuts from McMaster Carr. I'll be using these to attach stainless pipe clamps and DPI DOT brake hoses to the frame rather than using those crap plastic clips.

Also picked up my flywheel, newly machined - this time with a step!

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82DMC12
09-09-2022, 09:59 PM
Day 14

Today I felt like, and it looked like, I got a lot done!

First thing this morning is I took my DMCH Stage 1 exhaust in to a muffler shop to try to get the cats and tail pipes separated from my Magnaflow muffler. Way back in 2005 I bought the first Stage 1 which was mild steel headers, etc and coated with Jet Hot coating. I'm in the middle of trying to get the system refinished under lifetime warranty by Jet Hot but it's not looking good. If they won't do it for free, I can pay a kingly sum to have them recoat them at a goodwill discount. Unfortunately I am not sure the pipes will separate. The kid at the muffler shop used acetylene to heat it cherry red and the damn thing won't spin apart. He didn't want to damage it so he asked if he could wait until Monday when the owner is back. I said sure.

Next I go to work on my rear main seal. I have a new double-lip from Grady via Ed Uding and all of Rob's good advice. I have a new paper gasket and new M7 allen screws for the mounting plate. Hylomar AF on both sides of the paper gasket, then anaerobic between the plate and lower crankcase, using a q-tip to make sure the sealant went all the way into the corners. Then torqued slowly and evenly in random sequence until I hit 13 lbs. That should do it!

After that I decided it was time to make my new frame look more like a car. I disconnected the driver side suspension as a complete unit once it was free of the tie rod end and the sway bar. This proved to be too heavy and cumbersome to install as a full unit so I ended up removing the coilover to aid installation. I just didn't want to separate any ball joints. I ran a long 1/2" drill bit through both frame-bolt tubes and checked to make sure my bolts slide freely in and out before installing. Slathered the bolts in copper anti-seize and Energy Suspension polyurethane bushing grease all over the bushings. Good stuff.

Next I added the sway bar but I can't actually get it completely attached to the front frame extension because there's not enough weight pushing down. I just have it attached by the front bolts (allen head) for now.

After that I decided to top it all off with the rack and pinion. Took only about 30 minutes to pull it out of the old frame and pop it into the new one. Sure is easy when nothing is in the way and you can free open space from above! I just rebuilt the rack last fall so of course it looks great and the tie rod ends only have like 200 miles on them.

I had some more time before I had to wrap up for the day so I started to get into installing some M5 rivnuts which will hold clips for retaining the DeLorean Industries Premium brake line system. These are all DOT black flex hoses that match the DPI fuel lines most people have. This kit came with no instructions but it's pretty self-explanatory. All the fittings are included and most of the parts are pre-installed to each other so it's quite clear what is what. I put a few of the clips in and then started loose-fitting some of the hoses for the front end. This kit looks great and I'm looking forward to seeing it finished.

Not sure how much I'll do tomorrow since it's the weekend, my wife's off work, and I think she needs some family time. So might be a couple days before the next update.



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82DMC12
09-10-2022, 10:49 PM
Day 15

Got a bit more done today than I expected I would.

First I spent some time inserting some more rivnuts and getting the routing of the DPI DOT brake system down. This kit is great and I can't wait to seal everything up.

Next I installed the DPI stainless steel front frame-body spacers. One of mine fell off during the frame drop and rather than clean up that rusty old thing I decided to replace them. The DPI set is great, exactly the same fit as the old ones. Just rough up the mated surface with 80 grit sandpaper, die grind off all the old adhesive from the body, clean with lacquer thinner, 80 grit on the body, then apply Pilo Grip (same product that DPI uses on the roof boxes) with the 2-plunger mixing gun to the body plate. Next, press it to the body and secure in place with a M10 bolt, washers, and nut. Thanks to Josh for loaning me a Plio Grip gun!

After that I removed the fuel tank from my old frame (it only, practically, comes out the bottom), removed all the old foam, then gave it a good scrub with Mr. Clean, water, and a nylon brush. After rinsing there was still some stubborn stains and adhesive so I scrubbed it some more with red scotchbrite. That did the trick. Left it out in the sun to dry and then later in the day applied the new fuel tank foam kit and then installed in the new frame. Then I realized there's no way to put the new water pipes in because I can't get the frame high enough to slide then downward then tilt them up to the underside of the frame. I had to remove the tank, pre-fit the water pipes, then pop the tank back in. I have it pretty close but might need to make some adjustments later.

I ended the afternoon by test-fitting my refinished fuel tank closing plate with just a couple of bolts to make sure everything is lined up halfway decent.

Things are really moving fast now!

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Helirich
09-11-2022, 12:11 PM
Things look like you’re moving fast. Have you been keeping track of actual hours? Have you ever been involved with a “body off” restoration?

82DMC12
09-11-2022, 12:35 PM
Things look like you’re moving fast. Have you been keeping track of actual hours? Have you ever been involved with a “body off” restoration?

Sorry, I have not been keeping track of hours. I'd have to go back and count hours on the suspension last year which was also many days of work. I'm glad I took a week off right after pulling the frame out to knock out a big chunk of heavy lifting but also prep - there's a lot of stuff that has to go out for powder coating, blasting, refinishing, count up hardware that has to be replaced, etc.

No experience prior for this exact job (frame off) but I've been an owner for 22 years and wrenched on my car myself the whole time. Learned a lot the hard way! I've also been watching other frame off blogs and studying/preparing for this for quite a few months leading up to today! Preparation is key. Also not sticking to a budget....

82DMC12
09-12-2022, 01:24 PM
Day 16

I didn't do too much on Sunday since it's the Lord's Day (Chiefs football) and it was time to do some family stuff. We went out to breakfast, played with my son, and did some house chores. It can tough balancing work/family/hobbies and I can be guilty of working too hard at something and forgetting to relax. I don't really have a deadline and I have a full four weeks to go before I am taking another week off to put the body back on the frame and do all the re-connections, fluids, alignment, A/C recharge, etc. So, I have plenty of time and no need to hide out in the garage forever. Now that I'm back to work I will probably transition to wrenching a couple hours in the mornings before I need to get ready for work, that way I keep evenings open for family stuff.

I got a lot accomplished last week and I would estimate I am about 70-75% done with the frame build-up. It's really taking shape now that I'm working on fuel pipes and vacuum pipes and the associated clips that hold it to the frame. I got all the pipes roughed-in so I can confirm routing and orientation. I am about ready to fully install the fuel lines however I found that the FIR TREE INSERT 106984 which is what you connect the accumulator hoses to, the new pair of them I received have dry-rotted o-rings. I guess they are 40+ years old. I reached out to the vendor for advice on replacement o-rings but I suspect I will just bring them to NAPA and have them help me match up new ones from the big kits they have. Once I have them, I can cinch up all the new swivel nuts and olive fittings to the associated male joints and clip it all in place.

The vacuum pipes from my old frame are fine, they just needed to be scrubbed with some lacquer thinner on a towel to remove grime, then polished with a red scotchbrite pad to remove some grit and corrosion. Ready for another 40 years I suppose.

I was scrolling Facebook last night and saw that the company I dropped my transmission casing off at did a tiktok video showing how they refinished it for their own social media. Check it out here:

https://www.tiktok.com/@scurzon01/video/7142203769823055150?is_copy_url=1&is_from_webapp=v1

Can't wait to build this transmission back up! The sooner the better or else I'll forget how it all went together LOL

Other than that, I transferred my fuel filter over to the new frame. I also dry fit most of the rest of the DPI DOT brake hose system. I still need to install a few clips but it's really taking shape and I'm really appreciating the quality of this kit. The hoses you see in the picture of the rear part of the frame will be clipped to the bottom edge of the frame but then loop UP over the transmission mounts before taking off through the stay in the frame towards the trailing arms. They are just sitting loose right now.

What's left? Well, off the top of my head:

1) install flywheel and new clutch
2) Build up transmission and replace clutch fork boot and fork ball dust seal, new axle seals, new o-ring for the differential pre-tensioner
3) roll out the old frame so I can take measurements for where to drill the hole for the crossgate cable
4) Get all my refinished brackets and such from David Hudgins (ready this week)
5) Get radiator back, hopefully repaired (should be this week)
6) Transfer over rear suspension from the old frame
7) torque motor mounts once I get a new braided ground cable (motor to frame)
8) Make a decision on the exhaust system. It's currently being look at by the exhaust shop. I'm afraid it will cost so much to take it apart and ship it to get refinished on my own dime that I could just replace the whole exhaust system for nearly the same price. Ugh. Definitely going stainless next time.

I also want to do a pressure test of the fuel system once the engine is mounted but before installing under the body. I will have to make an electrical connector (weatherpack compatible) that I can plug in to the fuel pump, fused, with a switch, that I can run off my car battery to test my work installing the fuel lines. No way am I putting the body back on again without checking for leaks on the frame pipes!

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82DMC12
09-13-2022, 01:35 PM
Day 17

Not a lot of time yesterday to fool around in the garage. I did pick up my transmission casings from the vapor honing company and MY GOD they look great!! it's shame it will stuck under the car forever.

My plan yesterday evening was to reassemble the transmission tail cover but I didn't get very far before I decided that my freshly-cleaned external levers and such could really use a re-plating. They were covered in crud and I cleaned them in a bucket with Simple Green and a couple different nylon brushes. This removed the gunk but I couldn't bring myself to put it back together without re-plating since I've already come so far. Might as well go all the way. So I texted the only cad plater in Kansas City and they said it will be $125 min order per lot. So I figured if I'm paying that I should get my money's worth. I ended up removing a bunch of stuff to get plated including:



External transmission shift levers and crossgate pivot
All three engine cam end covers
Timing Scale (took photos to get the positioning correct when I'm done!!!)
Weird bracket thing that the idle motor attaches to on the intake manifold
Fuel filter bracket
A few misc fittings and such for the clutch piping
Crankshaft pulley which is already sleeved - I will have to ask if they can do this or not without messing up the sleeve


I'm bringing this stuff over to the plating company this afternoon and they said 5 to 7 business days so I guess I won't be putting the tail cover together for a bit. In the meantime I can certainly put new axle seals into the transmission and then re-install all the gears and selectors. That will help clean up some of the clutter in the garage.

I also mounted the engine to a stand so I could fold up and wheel the hoist out of the way for a while since I'm tired of stepping around it!

Daddy Duty tonight so I don't think I'll get anything else done today. David Hudgins is done with all my powder coating so I should be able to pick that up tomorrow and get going on installing that stuff!

Exhaust is done being separated (only $50!) so this week I'll figure out what to do there.

Big hardware order from Belmetric is out for delivery today so that should also keep me pretty busy.

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Helirich
09-14-2022, 01:18 PM
That transmission sure turned out nice!

82DMC12
09-14-2022, 01:25 PM
Thanks! Wait until I get it built back up with new yellow zinc hardware, cadmium plated external shift levers, powder coated cross gate brackets, a new clutch fork and fork boot! Hopefully get going on building the transmission in the next day or two.

Helirich
09-14-2022, 01:31 PM
Thanks! Wait until I get it built back up with new yellow zinc hardware, cadmium plated external shift levers, powder coated cross gate brackets, a new clutch fork and fork boot! Hopefully get going on building the transmission in the next day or two.

When you get all that done, I would like to display it on my coffee table. (My wife might not agree)

82DMC12
09-14-2022, 01:43 PM
When you get all that done, I would like to display it on my coffee table. (My wife might not agree)

Mine either, at this point! I'm getting the side eye whenever I escape to the garage in the evenings so I'm trying to work on this for a couple hours each morning instead LOL. Should be able to wrench away on the weekend too!

82DMC12
09-15-2022, 02:02 AM
Day 18/19

Not a lot done the last two days because of work and Daddy Duty. However, I did the following:

1) Received in a nice big order of fresh clean hardware from Belmetric. Nuts, bolts, washers, etc mostly in yellow zinc but a few in stainless (mostly washers) and a bit of silver zinc. In fact I already placed a second order due to arrive tomorrow and working on, perhaps, the third and final order for this project.

2) Cleaned up the threads on my motor mount studs. Opted not to replace them due to age and looking quite seized in the casting. Not interested in cutting them out, so running a die over them with some quality cutting oil is good for me.

3) Started to test fit my shifter with adapter plate. There's a bit of filing required on one edge where it's coming in contact with the shift lever, however I can't tell how far I back I need to file it until I have the shifter mounted and the levers attached. For now I'm lightly filing all the way back but I have a feeling I'll be taking away more material once the shifter is actually in place and getting adjusted. Too bad, hard to say if the file is imperfect or if the laser cutting didn't do it quite right. Anyway, I am more than capable of filing a bit of aluminum, so we'll get there. Also did my first cursory look at how the shifter will be mounted in the frame. I need to roll the old frame out so I can take some measurements of the shifter deck and where the shifter sits in relation to the front edge of the shifter tub. I want to get that distance exact on my new frame so I can minimize the need to make shift rod adjustments. Once I know that spacial relationship, I can trace my own frame where the auto shifter tub is and figure out how much frame material to cut out to make room for the shifter action.

4) Called the radiator shop - they haven't had a chance to look at my radiator yet.

5) Planning to pick up my extricated exhaust tomorrow

6) Picked up a bunch of powder coating work done by David Hudgins. It looks great! A few pieces in a cadmium color and a few pieces in gloss black. I mounted the front frame recall brackets and the radiator brackets today. I can mount a few more parts once my next Belmetric order is in.

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82DMC12
09-16-2022, 01:53 PM
Day 20

Last night I started matching up new hardware from Belmetric with old hardware I've got bagged up in ziplocs. As I removed parts, I bagged them up and put a piece of paper in the bag with the description of where the old hardware came from. That made it easy to record size, thread, and length in a spreadsheet which eventually turned into a hardware order. I am not reusing any hardware at all and I'm upgrading everything to 10.9 hardened variety wherever it was originally 8.8. All flat washers are upgraded to stainless steel. I also put longer bolts into the fuel tank on the leading edge where it goes over the front crossmember since the original bolts were shorter and prone to cross-threading.

This morning I started to reassemble the transmission. First I tapped in new axle seals. They are packed with red grease and smeared Hylomar AF around the sealing face. I then tapped them in with a PVC arbor tool I made which is the same diameter as the seal. Let me just say that it's a lot easier to tap these in when the case is on a bench with no differential installed!

Next I started to install the selector shafts and roll pins. Pretty easy job here except getting the detent springs and balls under the shafts was a bit tricky. I ended making a tool out of a wood dowel to help hold the ball down while I slid the shaft over it with my other hand. Took a few tries but eventually got everything seated.

All I have left for the selectors is to install the 1/2 roll pins with the second small strengthening pin inside of them. After that I will check differential pre-tension with a spring scale and spring so that I can set the adjusting nut and latch it down. Once that's done I will have to wait to seal the transmission and finish the tail cap once my cad plating is back and new conical washers come in next week.

I got a call from the radiator shop yesterday who claim my radiator is almost totally blocked up inside. I don't know if I believe them because I did run water through it from the garden hose before bringing it over so I wouldn't have green coolant leaking out into my car. It seemed to flow... OK? when I did that. Not sure that I trust them but at this point I'm just going to replace the radiator so that I can forget about the leak on it and move on. Maybe I'll have someone else look at it once this project is finished so I can keep a spare or sell it on to someone else.

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Helirich
09-16-2022, 09:07 PM
Is there any chance someone put orange antifreeze in it? That stuff does not mix with green and globs up. I bought a generator that someone did that to. A major pain to clean out.

82DMC12
09-16-2022, 10:35 PM
Is there any chance someone put orange antifreeze in it? That stuff does not mix with green and globs up. I bought a generator that someone did that to. A major pain to clean out.

Nope, that did not happen - I replaced the radiator myself and maintained it ever since. Not sure I really trust this shop. Guess I'll find out more when I go pick it up.

82DMC12
09-16-2022, 10:54 PM
Day 20, continued

I had some time after work to mostly finish up the main case and shafts for the transmission. I had to tap the outer race for the differential bearing back into the driver side of the casing. It came out during cleaning, perhaps from the heat. It was not damaged so it wasn't much trouble at all to pound it back flush with a block of wood. Then I tapped back in all the roll pins which are a bit of a puzzle challenge since they do have to be done in a certain sequence. It made most sense to tap in the outer small pin first, that way I could slide the selector fork and spring away, mostly, and only deal with about one coil of spring to hold back. Once that was in (and it has to be tapped in so that about the same amount is sticking out both sides in order to properly retain the spring on the rod), then I tapped in the larger one behind the fork. That held in the fork in place so that I could tap in the middle pin. THEN I tapped in the smaller backup pins into the two smaller pins to reinforce them (so they are double thick). It was a bit squirrely fighting the spring but I got it quick enough. Plastic pry tools helped a lot.

Then I was able to set into the case the primary shaft, outer shaft, and differential. I ran it through the different gears to make sure everything is turning smooth and no gears are hitting the pins. Looking great!!!

About all I had time for, after that, was to go to NAPA and get some new o-rings for the fir tree adapters which the fuel accumulator hoses clamp onto. I got NOS fir trees and the included o-rings were dry-rotted. The vendor didn't have a solution saying they checked and the rest are also dry rotted. I'm sure the o-rings are metric but I was able to find some that are pretty close in the huge o-ring kits that they have behind the counter. I took two sizes and then spent more time deciding which to use once I got home. I ended up using the ones that are a bit tighter fit so they don't hang up or squeeze out when inserting the fir tree into the pipe fitting. I smeared a small amount of red rubber grease on each o-ring and then applied a bit of hylomar on the threads for the swivel nuts. I then tightened the nuts up and set them in place on the frame. Maybe tomorrow I'll be able to finally snap in all the fuel lines.

Next project, I think, is to finish clamping down the DPI brake hoses in the rear part of the frame. Then I'll start prepping my engine for a new exhaust system. Stay tuned on that!

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82DMC12
09-16-2022, 11:46 PM
Can't edit my post but I said something confusing regarding hardware orders and new washers. I said I was replacing "all" washers with stainless when I really meant all non-critical washers like the fuel filter mounts, passenger water pipe mount, driver side otterstat pipe mount, etc. Any screw subject to a torque reading or where it could crush due to structure, weight, suspension use, etc are 10.9 yellow zinc steel washers.

82DMC12
09-18-2022, 09:02 PM
Day 22

I finally had most of the day to work in the garage and I got an incredible amount done. First of all, I wheeled out the old frame to the driveway, got it on jack stands, and took off the rear tires. I then disconnected the hard brake lines from the trailing arms and calipers, and then removed the trailing arms. No trouble at all with 19mm air impact and of course I installed Toby Tabs last year so everything is nice and slick, easy to remove. No stuck bolts. Once the arms were off I supported the rest of the suspension with a floor jack and then removed the two bolts and disconnected the coilovers from the shock tower so I could remove the suspension as a full unit. I then jacked it up into place on the new frame and boom boom done. I had both sides suspension installed except for final torque in about 2 hours.

I then finished stripping off everything else I need from the old frame which included my A/C lines, SS braided clutch line, and the black fuel hoses in the accumulator area. I installed the accumulator hoses to the fir tree inserts but not to the accumulator since I want to see where the gear shift levers end up first.

I took a few measurements on the old frame in regards to how the shifter sits so I can replicate it on the new frame. I have to cut the auto shifter deck and I think the easiest way to do that is with a dremel but I need to get a 90-degree adapter so I can use my cutting wheels like an angle grinder. I ordered it on Amazon so I'll have that tomorrow. I hope to get the shifter installed next week.

Next I set my coilover height to the same level I had it on my old frame (11 threads showing in front and 18 threads showing in the rear). I transferred over a couple of black rubber water hose pieces and hose clamps and that's about all that was left. I then swept the garage under suspended body which felt great to do some clean up. Lastly I dropped the old frame down onto furniture dollies, took a bunch of photos of it for my FOR SALE ad (see the parts for sale section!) and then pushed it back under the body.

Lastly I did some more work installing brake lines only to get hung up a bit on the passenger side with a clearance issue. Looking closely, I think my car actually has a driver side lever installed upside down on the passenger side.... The passenger side lever is NLA so maybe this was someone's creative solution?? Needs more investigation.

Until then.... enjoy some progress pictures!


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82DMC12
09-22-2022, 09:11 PM
Day 23-26 of my Frame-Out Restoration

First of all, I made a little video before I got started so you can see what I'm up to this week.

https://youtu.be/KKeKXGLPYfM

I'm going to combine the last few days into one post because not much happened until today. First of all, on Tuesday I received my new clutch kit from Toby Peterson at DeLorean Northwest. It's a Valeo kit and it comes with a new throw out bearing and a new pilot bearing. Normally he would also include gaskets for the rear main seal but he gave me a credit on them since I just installed new gaskets a few days back.

Then, I got the call that my cadmium plating is done. That stuff turned out great! It's not cheap these days but it will be the finishing touch on a lot of stuff you might see, or might not see, when this project is all done. But now I know there is some protection against corrosion on the parts. Maybe my favorite part to get plated was the timing scale. It really looks the part now, considering it used to be a rusty illegible mess.

Today I had time to get a bunch of stuff moving though, starting with rolling out the chassis to the driveway, then rolling out my engine on its stand (CAREFULLY - this stand scares me a bit when it goes over a crack and bounces a little!!!!) and then crack open the block plugs. They came out with a nice snap but I've had them out before so no worries. I then hooked up my garden hose and filled the block from the right-side water pump hose that usually connects to the pipe under the header bottle. This allowed water to fill the block and then run out of both plugs simultaneously. There was maybe a teaspoon or two of white gritty corrosion that came out, but by the time I was done it looked clean as a whistle. I left the plugs open to let everything dry out while I search for my new plug gaskets... somewhere.... in my rubbermaid bins of spare parts.

After rolling the engine back in (precarious!) and then rolling the chassis back in, I got to work on the transmission. I wanted to get the differential nut adjusted because that has to be done before setting in the shafts and sealing the case. I didn't have the special tool for turning the nut adjuster but that was not necessary since I was able to get it set properly by just tightening it with a hammer and punch. Would have been better to use a brass drift but I don't have one. No damage though. I set the pre-tension to about 12.5 newtons. This is done by wrapping string around the differential, torqueing the casing completely with all the M8 and M10 screws/nuts, and then attaching the other end of the string to a spring scale. As you pull on the differential with the string and spring, you read the force needed to make it turn. Pretty neat.

I would have opened the case up again and set the shafts in, sealed it up, etc BUT I decided to replace the M10 bolts too... I can't put it back together with all new everything except them!! So, another Belmetric order was placed.

After that I started working on the frame cut-out for my manual shifter. This turned out to be a bit too heavy a task for the dremel so I ended turning to my sawzall and angle grinder, and with a lot fussing about with different angles I was able to get a good start on the cut-out. It needs tweaking but I got most of the material out of the way.

Here's a few photos!

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82DMC12
09-24-2022, 11:25 PM
Day 28

Today was one of those days where I had great plans to get SO MUCH done but then I hit a brick wall. All turned out OK in the end, but... well here's what happened.

I thought first thing I would take a look at my new front frame harness (NOS from DMCMW) and snip off the fuel pump / fuel sender plugs so I could convert them to weather pack connectors to match up with my DPI fuel pump. First thing I realized was the fuel pump power wires are about 12 gauge while the sender wires are closer to 14-16 gauge. And thus, the smaller female weather pack connectors I had in my stock were not going to work for the 12 gauge wire unless I also soldered it. I didn't like cutting corners so I spent an hour driving to a remote NAPA that actually had some in stock. So there goes my morning. But, I did get the wires crimped properly and looking great.

Next, I wanted to totally finish my transmission up which means sealing up the two cases, attaching the secondary shaft bearing plate, fitting 5th gear and the selector, then installing the tail cover and the bell housing. I had been messing around with the transmission for a few days so I thought I had everything figured out so it would be a breeze. I checked my differential side shafts and levers one more time, laid down my anaerobic sealant, dripped a bit of green loctite 609 on the bearing faces on both sides, and then watched Nick Roedl's awesome videos to make sure I was setting it up correctly (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WsdP_BCMZTE). I guess the one thing I wasn't understanding was the reverse gear. I thought I had it, tested the lever after setting the case down, seemed to work, and then set to work torqueing all the bolts. When I was done, I checked my shafts and differential only to find that in neutral, my differential was locked up. WTF. I couldn't come up with any explanation other than the reverse gear was not set onto the selector correctly. FFFFFF........... Well I ended up taking the case apart and then spent at least 2 hours scraping off semi-cured anaerobic and retaining compound which was MUCH harder than you would think. Neither acetone nor lacquer thinner will remove the anaerobic. I had to use a combination of fresh razor blades, red scotchbrite, and elbow grease to clean everything back to surgical room perfection, then learn how to set the reverse gear without sealant before I was confident enough to lay down the anaerobic one more time.

In the end, I got it.

So that was my whole afternoon and early evening.

I had a bit of time to set in the secondary shaft's bearing retainer plate and get 5th gear set up. Tomorrow I'll torque the 5th gear nut with red loctite and then finish up attaching the tail cap and bell housing.

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82DMC12
09-28-2022, 01:29 PM
Day 32.... I think?

I was glad to get most of the transmission stuff done over the weekend but a bit annoyed that I didn't have new hardware for the tail cap. I had those M8 bolts in my order spreadsheet but I must have skipped that line when I actually placed the order. So, in the pursuit of perfection, I ordered the bolts on Sunday and they are now out for delivery (Wednesday). That means I can totally finish the transmission tonight.

In a frustrating turn of events, I learned that the shift plate adapter I had made is NOT going to work as-is (this is the plate pictured in the very first post of this thread). I tried to mount the shifter only to find that it would be located so far aft in the shifter cavity that the cross gate cable cannot possibly work (not enough adjustment in the cabin-side end of the cable). Simply cutting the plate is not quite the answer either because then the slots are far forward enough where they introduce other problems like only being able to use three of four mount holes. On further discussion with the creator of the autocad file, we made some adjustments to the file so that a new version of the plate SHOULD work. I send that file off to Xometry.com so I should have that in my hands early next week. I also made some measurements and a hand-drawing to accompany the first unusable plate and I dropped it off at a machine shop to have them modify it. I will have to use two alternate mount holes but that's not really a problem as long as the critical dimensions (front of cavity-to-center of M6 shifter mount hole) are followed. This is a set back for sure but I think on the plus side I will come up with a part that is much better and helps other easily do the auto-to-manual conversion.

In other news, yesterday I replaced the front main seal. I had replaced this once already maybe 15+ years ago but since I have the engine out, now's a good time to do it again. The old seal came out easily with a seal puller. I cleaned the hole in the timing cover with acetone, then smeared some The Right Stuff (gray) on the outside of the seal. I thought I'd have to use a piece of PVC to drive the seal in, but it actually was not too hard to push in with just my thumbs. I pushed the seal into place so it's flush with the bottom of the bevel. I let it sit for an hour and then I oiled up my freshly cadmium-plated (and previously sleeved) crankshaft pulley and put it in place. I am not going to torque the crankshaft nut down yet because I ordered a flywheel lock tool on Ebay. I'll have that Friday so hopefully this weekend finish up that and then put the clutch in.

So, what's left? Fortunately the pile of parts surrounding me is getting smaller. Off the top of my head:



Finish bolting up the transmission tail cap, bell housing, and bracketry, reverse switch
Receive new Xometry shift plate and machine-shop-modified shift place. See which one works better, and finally mount the shifter and linkage.
Drill hole for cross gate cable (had to buy a right-angle drill for this due to access issues but I was able to find a used Dewalt that works with my MAX batteries for pretty cheap on ebay)
Install cross gate cable into frame
Mount up flywheel and clutch
Install new exhaust studs (Grady special kit)
Install transmission to engine and drop the pair into the new frame
Adjust shift linkage and cross gate
Mount up radiator and condenser (new radiator from DPI incoming)
Install new headers, cats, and muffler
Couple of bits here and there regarding brake lines
Connect up fuel lines and do a pressure test with the car battery so I know the hard fuel lines are not leaking
Clean up ends on the evaporator (body-side) and replace A/C o-rings (green) wherever we took stuff apart, install new accumulator (probably better to do this after the body is back onto the frame)
Install new heater core hoses (body side) 5/8" Gates Safety Stripe from RockAuto
Finish up any trim-out (water pipes, electrical, etc) in the engine-side of the frame
Replace front frame wiring harness (requires opening the washer reservoir tank cover)
Install axles


Then I think I'm ready to drop the body back down... then of course all of the body bolts, wiring connections, clutch line, brake line, flush fluids, add oils, coolant, bleeding, etc.

Here's a picture of the shift plate sort-of installed but definitely not usable - the shifter is mounted too far backwards (and if even you adjusted the linkage to accommodate it would never work in the center console!)

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And a few more progress pictures...

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Helirich
09-29-2022, 01:19 PM
Your attention to detail is fantastic! I would be scared to drive it in the rain even though it’s probably better protected than 99.9% of the Deloreans out there.

On your cut out at the shifter. You really should have drilled the corners first and cut to the drill hole. I doubt there’s any real problem because that plate reinforces it, but I would still go in there with a die grinder and round out the corners. It eliminates stress risers.

I loved the video.

82DMC12
09-29-2022, 01:29 PM
Your attention to detail is fantastic! I would be scared to drive it in the rain even though it’s probably better protected than 99.9% of the Deloreans out there.

On your cut out at the shifter. You really should have drilled the corners first and cut to the drill hole. I doubt there’s any real problem because that plate reinforces it, but I would still go in there with a die grinder and round out the corners. It eliminates stress risers.

I loved the video.

Yeah good advice and I think I have to go in there again and make some more adjustments. It's super tight in the cavity and my angle grinder barely fits, and only for certain cuts. I just picked up the modified plate this morning at the machine shop so I'll find out tonight if it 1) does the job, and 2) requires further frame cutting. This plate is a bit messy but I believe the critical dimensions are correct and the holes are where they need to be. I have a new, cleaner plate being cut by Xometry.com right now which might work even better.

I'll be sure to do more videos from now on!

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82DMC12
09-29-2022, 10:46 PM
Day 33

Last night didn't go so well!

I came home from work excited to get the end cap and bell housing onto my transmission. I had new paper gaskets and was going to dress them with a small amount of anaerobic sealant (some debate if this is necessary or not). Anyway I thought I did a great job, which of course takes time and patience, and proceeded to install the caps with all brand new yellow-zinc plated hardware. I was about done and this thing was looking like a million bucks, like it just rolled off the French assembly line. I had been separating parts into zip locks and labeling the bags so I would know what goes where, for example, one bag had the 5th gear detent stuff in it, another one had the reverse switch, a ball, and a spring. I turned the transmission onto its side so I could install the reverse switch.

For some reason, I was thinking there was supposed to be a spring and ball in that hole just like the 5th gear detent. In fact I remember exactly what happened when I took the transmission apart the first day I had it off the engine. I had the case split open and I was working out how to get the selector bars out. I removed the reverse switch so I could set the case flat on a piece of cardboard. I pulled on the reverse bar and suddenly I heard a "dink-dink" and saw a detent ball rolling out of my garage. Of course I was horrified and jumped up and grabbed it before it was lost. I think the spring was under the case so I thought the ball and spring were under the reverse switch.

That's why those parts were bagged up together.

Well it turns out the ball and spring are INTERNAL and not external to the transmission. After some quick research and a Facebook post, I was convinced there must be a blind hole facing towards the reverse bar and that's where these parts came out. After getting quite mad at myself, I buckled down and proceeded to destroy my beautiful work and remove the bell house, end cap, 5th gear nut which I had just installed with loctite, and split the case open, all while getting my hands covered in partially cured anaerobic. Just terrible. Funny thing is, this time I had the transmission open in about 30 minutes and already had the spring and ball inserted where they belong. This is actually pretty treacherous though because if you pull the reverse bar OUT, even with the reverse switch installed, the ball will let loose inside the transmission. I don't think this is possible once the two cases are back together because the reverse gear can't move backwards so far along the primary shaft. I will check into that some more tomorrow. But for now, I have the detent working properly and I'm just waiting for new paper gaskets before I can put the case back together for hopefully the FINAL time.

In other news, I got a used Dewalt 90 degree drill on ebay so I can drill the cross gate hole in my frame. There's not enough access in the cavity to do this with a traditional drill.

I also picked up the shift adapter plate from the machine shop and it is SO CLOSE. It will locate in the correct position now and the deck height is correct! Unfortunately I didn't have them rout the rear slots out quite far enough. Looking at the cad file for the second plate that just shipped from Xometry, I don't think that one will have long enough slots either. So, I guess I will take both plates to the machine shop on Monday to have them route them backwards another half inch. THEN I should be in business and I can finally mount my shifter and get on with the cross gate cable and linkage. Very exciting!

See a video of the plate progress here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J5NFYlYL6gw

And finally here are a few other progress pictures. The first two show the reverse switch detent, and then the reverse rod detent spring hole which is actually under the rod (the reverse rod is pulled out as far as it will go without releasing it from the lever).


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Helirich
09-30-2022, 01:10 PM
Wow, that’s depressing! But it is nice you got it sorted so quick. That kind of thing makes me drop everything and leave the shop for a couple days.

82DMC12
09-30-2022, 01:21 PM
Wow, that’s depressing! But it is nice you got it sorted so quick. That kind of thing makes me drop everything and leave the shop for a couple days.

It was getting late and I was debating if I should just call it and go to bed. But I also know how I am and I knew I wouldn't be able to sleep, PLUS I didn't really want the loctite and anaerobic to cure overnight because that would just make things worse. So, nothing to do but just dive back in. Anyway, by now I have everything cleaned up again, two tubes of anaerobic on the way from Amazon, a pair of paper gaskets getting delivered tomorrow, and I decided to replace the hardware again because it's so cheap and faster than cleaning cured anaerobic out of the threads of the first set of hardware. I don't want the torque setting to be affected by dirty threads, plus the conical washers are really only good for one or two uses before they go flat. Belmetric sells the conical washers (belleville washer). $25 in hardware is no big deal. I have a big pile of old hardware at this point that I will probably sent out to get cleaned and re-plated when this project is done.

I am going to try to lay a thinner bead of anaerobic this time to help avoid getting adhesive on the hardware.

Maybe after all this I will eventually become the transmission expert!

82DMC12
10-03-2022, 09:51 AM
Day 36

Not a big update over the weekend due to Daddy Duty all day Saturday (wife at work on a 12 hour shift) and then Sunday was kind of busy with family stuff and we had some friends over for dinner. I had a bit of time during the afternoon to attack a couple of other issues on the DeLorean in the front body area. First of all, I decided to replace my front frame harness because the old one was feeling a bit crispy and it had a lot of that insidious undercoating on it. Now's the time to get rid of it I think. I got a NOS harness and replaced the fuel pump and fuel sender plugs with Delphi Weather Pack connectors earlier in the week. This weekend I pulled out the washer bottle cover and cleaned up the three connectors in there (one pin on the front harness plug was pretty gray-corroded) , replaced the foam on the washer bottle tank, and buttoned it back up but only after having to replace three M5 rivnuts and new, longer screws this time so they grab sooner. Now it's a quality repair!

While I was in there I used my angle grinder to remove two M6 screws and rivnuts from the body which hold the fan shroud in. They've been spinning for 20 years so now's the time to fix them. McMaster Carr to the rescue!

I spent a bit more time cleaning up my transmission case faces since my hardware for the main case is being delivered today so I can FINALLY finish the transmission. That will be a bit accomplishment.

Lastly I used this nylon brush attachment for my compressed air die grinder to clean up the surfaces of my heads for the exhaust gaskets. This thing works pretty well to remove dirt, light aluminum corrosion, and other crud from the metal without actually removing metal like a wire wheel attachment would. Pretty cool. I got it on a whim at O'Reilly Auto Parts. I know in the picture below the head doesn't look perfect but it's actually pretty smooth. Most of the discoloration is just that. Or it's some corrosion that the gaskets will take up.

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82DMC12
10-04-2022, 10:45 AM
Day 37

Less than two weeks to go before my target date of putting the body back onto the frame. I think I can do this! Still waiting on a couple of parts but I believe they are now enroute.

Big day yesterday though. I finally got the transmission completely built back up. And this time with a reverse detent! I did confirm that with both halves together, it's not possible to pop the reverse detent ball out since the reverse selector will jam up the bar before it can come out far enough to lose the ball and spring behind it. Good to know.

I spent an hour re-checking my differential pre-tension and decided to tighten it up just a smidge to about 12 newtons.

Once again, I cleaned all the surfaces with acetone, applied anaerobic sealant in a thin bead on the differential-side case, applied loctite 407 to the bearing faces, and set the shafts back in. A thin smear of anaerobic on the other case including where the through-bolts go through, set the reverse gear to the rear of the case, and set it back down onto the diff case. No turning back now! Blue loctite on the outer bearing plate bolts and red loctite on the 5th gear nut (and staked with a punch). Thin bead of anaerobic on both sides of the paper gaskets and torqued to spec. I was glad to finally be able to assemble all my outer shift lever parts that just got a few cadmium plating. The garage floor is starting to have less parts strewn about!

When installing the PJ Grady sleeved axles, I put a bead of hylomar AF on the splines on the outboard side of the roll pins and then faced the open side of the pins outward to help prevent oil leaks.

Next job? Finish up some minor parking brake stuff so I can put the rear wheel back on and then roll the chassis outside so I can turn it out. I want the engine-side in my garage first so I can eventually get the engine and transmission installed into it.

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82DMC12
10-05-2022, 09:51 PM
Day 38

I'm finding it's pretty nice to work in the garage in the morning before work and before the others are awake. Nice and quiet and no interruptions!

But first - last night I had some questions about the amount of play in the input shaft after rebuilding the transmission. I remembered that there was some play in the shaft before disassembly but I didn't measure it or make a video. So, I did make a quick video and confirmed with PJ Grady that the play you see here is normal:

https://youtube.com/shorts/cFJEIamJbCc?feature=share

This morning I set my sights on finishing up any engine work so I can dismount the engine from the engine stand, transfer it to my cherry picker, then lower it down to the ground so I can line up the transmission and mate them again.

Remaining engine work:

Finish cleaning up exhaust side of heads and chase M7 exhaust stud holes
Mount the flywheel
Mount the clutch
Torque crankshaft pulley nut


I got the exhaust prep done this morning without much trouble. Luckily I have a M7 plug tap which isn't ideal for blind holes but good enough for the exhaust studs since they don't thread in all the way. I installed a set of PJ Grady coated stainless studs with copper anti seize by double-nutting them with a washer in the middle. Worked great. I think that's how I did it last time 15 years ago and no issues with them the whole time.

After that I turned back to the transmission and installed the clutch fork, new dust boot, release bearing, and the new PJ Grady rebuilt / brass sleeved slave cylinder. I packed the ball stud boot with "Grady Goop" which is 50/50 red grease and anti-seize. I also put some on the bell housing tube which the release rides on and the input shaft splines.

The new clutch fork is one of the DMCH reproduction forks. Everything went together smoothly and looks great.

Next - dismount the engine from the stand and install the flywheel, clutch, and lock the flywheel so I can torque the pulley nut. THEN.... engine to trans and drop it into the frame!

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82DMC12
10-06-2022, 01:05 PM
This morning I had enough time to get my engine off the stand and hang from the hoist. Using a couple of flywheel lock tools I got on eBay, I was able to hold the crankshaft in place while torquing the crank pulley and installing the flywheel. The flywheel is freshly machined and has a 0.018" step (recommended by Toby Peterson). The new Valeo clutch went in perfectly. I tapped in the pilot bearing with a 1 1/8" deep socket and used a couple drops of loctite 609 bearing face compound.

Nice little job for this morning and my next task is to mate the transmission up to the engine!

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Helirich
10-07-2022, 11:02 AM
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Love that picture.

82DMC12
10-07-2022, 04:34 PM
Day 40

Last night I was able to mate the transmission back up to the engine! This is not too difficult when you have plenty of room to work. I debated renting a transmission jack because that is what I used to get the transmission off the engine, but the only place I know in Kansas City that rents them is like 40 minutes on the other side of the city and I would probably have to go into work late / leave early to get it and return it. I wondered if I could get it done by dropping the cherry picker nice and low and adjust the angle with my load leveler. Then basically just roll the transmission up to the flywheel on a wheel skate. Well, that is exactly what I did and it worked perfectly.

I was able to set the angle of the engine once both parts were right up against each other by comparing the flywheel angle to the edge of the bell housing. Once that is pretty close, I was able to slip the nose of the input shaft into the clutch / pilot bearing and roll the transmission forward until the dowels were pretty well lined up. Then I threaded all four bell housing mounting bolts a few threads to keep either side from rolling. Once that was done I able to fine tune the engine height and angle again before pushing the transmission completely up to the engine. I had to put the transmission into gear and turn both axles a few degrees to get the shaft splines lined up. Cinched the four bolts together and then cut my zip ties on the clutch fork (holding the release bearing backwards into the bellhousing so it doesn't get out of place). Perfect!

Next I installed my DeLorean Industries remote clutch bleeder to the slave cylinder, then unscrewed the two bottom transmission mount bolts one at a time in order to put my black powder coated shields onto them. All that's left now is to install the starter and the hall effect mounting plate on the opposite side. Then I think I can drop this thing into the frame!

This morning I stopped by the machine shop and picked up my auto-to-manual adapter plates. We made enough modifications to ensure they will work and I should be able to easily get the manual shifter installed in the correct location in all three dimensions. Now I just have to drill my cross gate cable hole and install the linkage!

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SupercoolBill
10-09-2022, 09:01 AM
Day 9

FRAME PARTY DAY!!

First of all, I want to thank the following super cool owners and friends who helped make today happen - painterdave72 (David Hudgins), Matthew Mangels and his son Elijah, Alvin Erhart and his son Johnny, Joey, and my wife for baking the cookies!

Today went extremely well and the process was straight-forward and well-planned for mostly thanks to Andy Orton's excellent youtube video

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j-AmAyELV8s

We basically did EXACTLY what is shown in this video and had zero issue lifting the body off and rolling out the chassis. We used EXACTLY 40 4x8x16 hollow concrete bricks ($1.27 each at Sutherlands) and two 4x4x8ft wood beams. I debated getting 10 ft beams for extra width but it turned out that 8 foot is very doable and what I would recommend if working in a home garage where you need to minimize lost floor space during the restoration.

What to do with the bricks and beams when I'm done? Not sure. This like 1,400 lbs of brick which took 4 trips in my SUV to pick up so I'd rather someone just come get them when I'm done. I'm sure I can get rid of them fast-ish on Marketplace.

Anyway everyone arrived around 9:30 AM and we pretty quickly went to work removing the fascia and then disconnecting the shift linkage and crossgate from the transmission so we wouldn't have to monkey with it topside later on. By 11 AM we were ready to lift the body up. I shared the Andy Orton video with everyone on our facebook chat a few days prior so they had an idea of we will do. We had one man on each corner manning a scissor jack and about three people walking around and spotting to make sure nothing is getting caught. Generally we lifted up together as a team, turning the jack three revolutions before stopping to confirm all is good. As soon as we could add a new brick to the support stack we did so. We had to let the body back down to the support stack four times so we could add another brick under the jack to get more vertical lift. And back and forth we went until we had the beams under the body (making sure not to hit the M6 studs sticking down to secure the trailing arm shields) and then lifted high enough to get the shift lever and radiator rolling underneath and out. I think we had the chassis out by 12:30 PM.

After a pizza break the next task was to lift out the engine and transmission from the old frame. We had to do that in the driveway and thankfully there was cloud cover most of the time or it would have been a hot, sweaty ordeal. It took a couple hours to remove the exhaust from the engine (DMCH Stage 1 installed about 15 years ago) and then a bit longer to remove the transmission mounts from the transmission and frame. After that, the engine came out fairly easily but at an odd angle because I didn't have a load leveler for the hoist.

At that point it was mid afternoon and about time for most to get back home. We pushed the hoist and drivetrain into the garage and then pushed the old frame back under the body after removing the radiator and shifter.

Only casualties that I can see so far is a scratch on my water pump pulley and the little finger on the throttle that hits the full throttle switch came off of the spool but I think I can solder that back on no problem. I'd call that a success!

https://youtu.be/7pbMs8lQfrs

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68880Just trying to get caught up reading though your thread. This pretty much the same way I got my body off the frame also. It is a bit nerve racking. I bought a set of four RV jacks and never ended up using them. I just used my two large floor jacks with some blocking. Lift one side of the car up to set another set of blocks in, scoot over to the other side, do the same.

Sent from my SM-F926U1 using Tapatalk

82DMC12
10-10-2022, 01:27 PM
Day 43

First of all, I'm going to do more video updates, so here you go!

https://youtu.be/k0NAIge1n6Q

Steady progress and moving forward! This weekend I was able to mount the engine and transmission into the frame! Quite the milestone. First, I nearly forgot to bash in the first rib on the passenger side of the engine "Y" just in front of the trailing arm mount. If you look at a manual frame. you'll see the flange is bent inwards to make room for the crossgate pivot. On an Auto frame, the flange is straight. It would be pretty hard to bend it with the transmission in place so a few whacks with a hammer and I think I have enough room. Of course that damaged some of my POR15 on the edge so I had to touch it up. Looking good now.

Dropping the engine and transmission was pretty simple especially with the flexibility that a load leveler gives you. I was able to dip the transmission downward to clear the frame "V", then go back and forth between dropping the unit an inch, then leveling it out a bit, dropping a bit further, leveling again, etc until everything lined up quite well. I put some antiseize on the inside surfaces of the new motor mounts and the engine dropped right in. The transmission mounts are another story and an exercise in frustration. Here's the trick:

Assemble each mount so the mount is attached to the rubber and the frame-side frame is on the rubber, but loose.
Attach the three-point side of the mount to the transmission completely and tighten down
Finally, attach the M8 bolts through the frame into the rubber-side mount.

Any other sequence will make you mad.

Anyway, got that dropped in, took the engine stand apart and stowed back in the basement, and folded up the crane and pushed it into the garage of the garage.

I HAVE SO MUCH MORE ROOM NOW

After that, I turned my attention to the shifter and my twice-modified shift plate adapter. I think we are good now in regards to three-dimensionally locating the shifter. I had to cut out some more material in the bottom of the cavity with my sawzall and angle grinder to make room for the fore-aft movement of the shifter. I don't know how far forward or backward the shifter goes in practice but I have enough material removed now where I think I can hook it up and see where I land.

Tonight after work I'll roll the old frame out to the driveway again so I can take final measurements of the shifter location and, more importantly, exactly where to drill the hole for the cross gate cable. I'm not working on anything else on this frame until the shifter and linkage is installed and working.

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Helirich
10-11-2022, 12:33 PM
Enjoyed the video. I think I heard you say you had the stock starter. I believe you must remove the oil filter to replace it. The new starters are shorter and you can get them out without disturbing the oil filter. Something to consider.

Thanks for posting.

82DMC12
10-11-2022, 01:22 PM
Enjoyed the video. I think I heard you say you had the stock starter. I believe you must remove the oil filter to replace it. The new starters are shorter and you can get them out without disturbing the oil filter. Something to consider.

Thanks for posting.

Well I wouldn't mind removing the oil filter as long as the starter comes out without removing the exhaust header! I fit the header loosely just to make sure my positive cables aren't in the way, but I didn't try to remove the starter with the header in place. I'll have to check that. I'm already know you cannot remove the factory starter with the DMCH Stage 1 exhaust - I did try to do it once and no luck. Not sure about the DPI exhaust which I am fitting this time around. It's something to consider.

82DMC12
10-11-2022, 02:01 PM
Day 44

The shifter is (mostly) installed and working!

https://youtu.be/Rdyoqukykck

There is a small amount of rub between the frame cutout and the shifter itself, this was due to my attempt to use the lower left threaded mounting hole in the frame to mount my shift adapter to. I don't think it will be possible to use that hole without eliminating the rub, so I am going to cut a bit more material out there and then drill a new hole in both the adapter plate and the frame to secure the lower left corner. No big deal. But, then it will smooth as butter.

I got the shifter installed and then set up the cross gate which was not too difficult to do. I probably just got lucky getting the cable adjusted almost correctly the first time and then perfectly the second time. I have all five forward gears and reverse working normally!

Everything is assembled more or less but I am going to take it apart again for lubrication and final adjustments. Then, I don't have much left to do.

Here's my new list of outstanding work required:



Mount up radiator and condenser (new radiator from DPI incoming)
Install new headers, cats, and muffler
Couple of bits here and there regarding brake lines
Connect up fuel lines and do a pressure test with the car battery so I know the hard fuel lines are not leaking
Clean up ends on the evaporator (body-side) and replace A/C o-rings (green) wherever we took stuff apart, install new accumulator (probably better to do this after the body is back onto the frame)
Install new heater core hoses (body side) 5/8" Gates Safety Stripe from RockAuto
Finish up any trim-out (water pipes, electrical, etc) in the engine-side of the frame
Install axles


Wish I could take a day off work this week and just bang it out. Oh well. I have all next week off for vacation so I'm looking at a mid-week target for dropping the body back down onto the frame!

Helirich
10-11-2022, 10:53 PM
Well I wouldn't mind removing the oil filter as long as the starter comes out without removing the exhaust header! I fit the header loosely just to make sure my positive cables aren't in the way, but I didn't try to remove the starter with the header in place. I'll have to check that. I'm already know you cannot remove the factory starter with the DMCH Stage 1 exhaust - I did try to do it once and no luck. Not sure about the DPI exhaust which I am fitting this time around. It's something to consider.

I have the DPI exhaust and can confirm the starter can be changed without removing the header.

Edit, the new starter. Not sure about the stock one.

82DMC12
10-12-2022, 09:29 AM
I have the DPI exhaust and can confirm the starter can be changed without removing the header.

Edit, the new starter. Not sure about the stock one.

Thanks! I ordered the O'Reilly starter (Ultima) mentioned in another thread. I'm going to change the starter while I'm in here. Would suck to need a new starter and have to remove the header to get it out.

82DMC12
10-21-2022, 09:53 AM
Day 48

Wow what a week! I've neglected posting just as things are getting exciting! I guess that's because I've really been on a roll and too exhausted to do anything but eat, sleep, give the family some attention, and wrench on the car.

So where did I leave off? I think I was about to do the fuel pressure test. That went perfectly, and here's what I did:



wired up a weather pack connector to interface with the existing DPI fuel pump connector
Connected ground to my car battery
Connected +12 to, first, from the battery a 10 amp fused wire holder, then do a simply on/off toggle switch
Turned on the toggle switch to start the fuel pump and after three or four seconds I could hear everything circulating


The fuel pressure tested revealed NO leaks so I continued to let the pump run for about 20 minutes. Then turned it off, checked again for leaks, and later in the day ran it some more. With that confidence, I felt OK putting my fears to rest regarding the hard pipes leaking.

Next I installed the new DeLorean Industries radiator and fan system to my existing aftermarket parallel-flow condenser. This was done with the aid of four small 3/8" thick spacers between the radiator and condenser so they won't touch. The whole unit then was mounted to the stainless radiator supports and then to the last two stainless hard water pipes and new water hose connectors. No issues with any of this, it all went together really nicely however I did cut down two of the rubber hose connectors as they were really so long that it made assembly (and in the future, disassembly) too difficult.

Moving to the back of the car, I completed some rewiring of the alternator and starter solenoid wiring. Many many years ago I had "fixed" some crispy wiring using subpar connectors and a lot of sticky electrical tape. This time I cut it all out way up the harness and repaired it correctly with marine heat shrink butt connectors, proper wire, insulated terminals, and more heat shrink tubing all wrapped up under two layers of Tesa tape. I also added an insulated dust cap to the positive terminals on the alternator to help keep it clean.

Lastly, I installed the Gen 3 DPI Spec Exhaust system to the engine. Both headers with new gaskets, then the left cat, then the muffler slides over it, then add the right cat and center the muffler. I did not tighten the muffler yet because I want to make sure it is centered perfectly and at the right angle before I do that. Also I test fit one tail pipe just to see what it looks like, then wrapped it up again to wait until it can be the finishing touch.

82DMC12
10-21-2022, 11:26 AM
Here are a few pictures showing how I hooked up my fuel pump test. Also, I have been converting every external plug on the car to Delphi Weather Pack connectors. One thing I found interesting is the white plug on the firewall is two-pin with a red wire and a black wire. Then, the plug it goes into on the engine harness, is black wires with black/blue wires. Weird to see that wiring color change on either side of the plug. I found a couple threads on DMCTalk where others have asked about this so I know it's not just me!

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82DMC12
10-24-2022, 03:44 PM
Those of you who know me, know that I am a few days behind on this blog but I'm going to try to keep up!!

After successfully testing the fuel system, it was time to do some finishing touches to the frame including:


mount up the new heater core metal pipes that run along the frame
Complete some wiring updates
Dial in the cross gate cable
attach the A/C hoses and connections


Regarding the metal pipes, a long time ago my plan was to restore the frame like-OEM all the original pipe clips. Then I read some other blogs and chatted with other smart owners (particularly Daniel Haney in CO) and I was convinced to look into using stainless pipe clamps that go over the pipe rather than under the pipe and clipping it in. The stainless clamps are generally screwed into the frame using M5 rivnuts and appropriately-long M5 screws. Daniel was even kind enough to send me all his spare clamps and hardware which I was able to pick through and figure out what I wanted to use. I definitely wanted to clamp down the heater core pipes because the black plastic C-clips SUCK SUCK SUCK. They are so bad, they hold the pipe well enough but keep popping out of the frame. I guess you could epoxy them in but it was even easier to just use some SS camps. I slightly drilled out one of the black-clip mounting holes so I could insert the rivnut without drilling new holes in the frame. Worked great. In the end I ended up only clamping the pipes in the rear and the front with thin foam between the pipes and frame to reduce vibration where they come close to the frame. The middle clamp was not going to work because it interfered with A/C hose fitment (more on that in a later post at the appropriate time!). You can still get to both clamps with the body on the frame so theoretically I can now replace the heater core pipes without lifting the body.

Wiring updates - I replaced / fixed any and all crispy connections especially at the alternator and starter. As mentioned before, I replaced the whole front frame harness. I also updated every exterior wiring connector to Delphi Weather Pack connectors. That includes fuel pump and sender plugs, both fan plugs, the blue-yellow wire plug under the ignition resisters, the reverse switch harness, the lambda ground reference (eliminated that black plastic connector), and the white/red to black blue/black plug behind the engine. On the body side, I cleaned all the connections with wire brushes, emory cloth or sand paper, or a dremel, whatever was easier.

A/C connections were no trouble at all, really. I had a kit of all the green o-rings that I might need and I treated them and the threads with Nylog Blue A/C thread and o-ring sealant. Everything went together well and I zip tied the long A/C hoses into place on the side of the frame.

Regarding the cross gate, I have it dialed in really well, however the cable itself is a bit stiff at the ends of travel (as the inner cable reaches its limit, it feels gummy). I see the sheath has split in a couple places so I am sure it's all grimey or rusty inside. Maybe it worked fine before but now it's in a slightly different position and it's rubbing internally somewhere. I took it out of the car and tried to lubricate it and it's better but not perfect. End result is if you are using the shifter lightly, sometimes it won't pop into neutral if you flick the shifter out of 1st or 2nd. It goes 90% out of the gear but then hangs up cocked to the left. I don't like it so I'm going to replace the cable but DPI is back ordered on them until December (improved cable with kevlar inner jacket). I'm on the list :-)

Here's a picture of the clamp I used (slightly modified in a vise) as well some radiator porn.

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Helirich
10-25-2022, 12:19 PM
Beautiful!

Carry on.

82DMC12
10-25-2022, 01:31 PM
Last thing to do on the chassis was to add the new DeLorean Industries SPEC Gen 3 exhaust system. Previously, and for the last 15 years or so, I had DMCH's Stage 1 original system which was steel exhaust coated by Jet Hot. I swapped out the raspy Flowmaster muffler for a Magnaflow muffler with zero regrets and it really sounded and looked great. I liked how the exhaust went way downward and then wrapped back up - got a lot of compliments on the street and at car shows. Unfortunately the Jet Hot coating began to fail and I was getting pinhole rust spots especially on the cat sections. Strange because the car rarely sees water or rain and it's stored in my garage. I reached out to Jet Hot who, at first, said they would honor their lifetime warranty and do a free re-coat however when it came down it, I was unable to produce a receipt proving they did it since the coating was done while still in DMCH's possession, hence why I would not have a receipt. I called DMCH and they tried to find paperwork but it was so long ago and many accounting systems later that they couldn't help either. Apparently not many still have this system because the coating failure was common and it was often replaced with a stainless version.

Jet Hot was willing to do a re-coat at my expense less a discount which would have been around $1,000 after shipping back and forth.

Well I ended up selling the Stage 1 to someone else which partially funded the new DPI set which looks and sounds great! The fit and finish of this kit is A++++ and I think it's totally worth the money. It comes with really nice copper gaskets for the cat-header connection and the triple manifold gaskets you cut with a tin snips. No room, really, to torque the exhaust nuts so I just made them "snug" thinking I will check them again after getting everything hot and cooling down once I can finally start the engine.

I have Grady's custom exhaust stud set (short side inserted into the heads). The exhaust came with new gaskets. I cleaned the head surface first with a nylon ball brush on my air powered die grinder, then shined it up with red scotchbrite before wiping down with acetone. The passenger side header went on easily with plenty of clearance however the driver side is a tight fit, in fact I ended up removing the studs from the head before setting the header in place to avoid getting anything scratched up. I am unsure if the DPI studs are shorter and would allow easier installation/removal.

At the same time I fit a new Eagle Premier starter even though my original Paris Rhone starter was doing fine. I had that PR starter rebuilt quite a while back, maybe even 20 years ago now. No issues BUT it's so big that you cannot remove it without removing the exhaust header. I decided "now is the time" so I got the starter from O'Reilly Auto (Ultima brand). Here is the part # - R612473B

After attaching the driver side cat to the header, I slipped the muffler over it, and then added the passenger side cat. Using a tape measure I centered the muffler in the frame. Oh and I also put a film of anti-seize on the sleeves.

And that was the final touch! I then went around and re-checked all my brake lines, brackets, wiring, etc and make sure I didn't forget to tighten anything. I ended up dicking around with the cross gate some more and also working on the bell crank for the shift levers. I lubricated it with a combo of red grease and copper anti seize. The nut under it was tightened well with a star washer between the nut and frame and blue loctite on the threads. I'll be sure to check it again after the first test drive.

Finally, I wiped the frame and everything else down with some Tub-O-Towels and waited for some help to come around so we can roll the chassis back under the body!

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This picture is prior to doing any wiring repairs and improvements. I ran the wires through the cloth sheath and clamped it to the engine using an M7 screw and rubber-insulated pipe clamp. I also painted the oil pressure sender with gold engine enamel later that day!



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In this picture above, I was unsure if the flanges would touch since the copper gasket has a ring in it. I texted Josh and he said NOPE just snug it up and the copper will seal.



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82DMC12
10-25-2022, 03:49 PM
Here is a video showing the state of the chassis at this point in the restoration!


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DDiZPgDdz08

Helirich
10-25-2022, 08:37 PM
In this picture above, I was unsure if the flanges would touch since the copper gasket has a ring in it. I texted Josh and he said NOPE just snug it up and the copper will seal.]

I never had any sealing problem, but I did have one of the bolts fall completely off on a long trip. It just kept getting louder. Lol. I pulled into a Lowe?s and got a new bolt. I think I put stainless lock washers on all of them also. Been good ever since. Could be you just need to re-tighten after 50 miles.

82DMC12
10-25-2022, 08:46 PM
I never had any sealing problem, but I did have one of the bolts fall completely off on a long trip. It just kept getting louder. Lol. I pulled into a Lowe?s and got a new bolt. I think I put stainless lock washers on all of them also. Been good ever since. Could be you just need to re-tighten after 50 miles.

Did your kit come with lock washers? Mine actually did not, I assume it was an oversight in the packing department but I was texting another owner and he confirmed he had lock washers.... so I just ran to the hardware store and got some. I'll be sure to check them again after a few drives.

Helirich
10-26-2022, 12:53 PM
Did your kit come with lock washers? Mine actually did not, I assume it was an oversight in the packing department but I was texting another owner and he confirmed he had lock washers.... so I just ran to the hardware store and got some. I'll be sure to check them again after a few drives.

I honestly don?t recall. It might have come with the star lock washers and I replaced them with heavy split washers. I figure they ?dig in? more. Probably after a few hundred miles, they aren?t moving. I want to say this is no dis to Josh. That exhaust is a work of art. I would really like another to put on my coffee table. (Not sure how the wife would react)

82DMC12
10-26-2022, 01:00 PM
47 days after lifting the body off of my old chassis... READY TO PUT IT ALL BACK TOGETHER!

painterdave72 (David Hudgins) came over after work to help with the heavy lifting. We rolled the chassis out into the street and took a few pictures, then turned it around and pushed it up the driveway and lined it back up under the body.

Before removing the chassis, fellow owner Alvin Erhart had the great advice to mark the floor with painter tape and a sharpie so I could find the centerline of each wheel when reinstalling everything. This was good advice so that we could get it "pretty close" in two dimensions before lowering the body back down.

When rolling back into place, you must be careful to ensure the radiator can go under both wood beams and then the gear stick has to clear the rear beam. The gear stick is probably 3 inches taller than the radiator is when everything is installed. This required us to lift the beams and body further than the level everything had been sitting for the last one and a half months. We went back and forth from front to back, simultaneously lifting the body further up 5 cranks at a time.

Once we were in place, we reversed our efforts and lowered the beams back to the outboard brick towers, then turned our second outer towers inboard so that they were directly under the corners of the body tub. Then we moved the jacks to those towers and lifted the body high enough to slide the beams out.

During the last few weeks I had noticed my rear beam had a crack in it but it didn't go all the way through the wood. This was unsettling, plus the 8 foot 4x4 beams were really the minimum length possible so my jacks were on the extreme outer edges of the beams during lifting and dropping. If I ever had to do this again, I would use FOUR beams while the body is at rest and I would use 10 foot beams to reduce the stress on the wood.

From here it was pretty simple - just remove a brick from the low tower, drop the body down to the next brick on the high tower, move the jack to the lower tower, then lift up slightly to slide the high tower brick out, and then drop it down again. Repeat repeat repeat. All while checking to make sure nothing gets hung up or pinched. Not much can really happen for the first 3/4 of the drop however I kept a close eye on the A/C dryer hose (dryer not installed but the hose can get stuck on the upper A-arm) as well as the vacuum lines, fuel lines, and engine harness since they have to make their way above the lip in the body. You also want to make sure the positive battery cable is laying on top of the passenger side trailing arm and you might as well feed it back into the body once you have the opportunity to.

As we got closer to the body resting on the frame, the next challenge was making sure the frame was truly centered under the body. We used the front shock tower holes in the trunk as a visual guide for the front and the horizontal body bolt holes in the pontoons as a rear guide. On my car, two washers go between the frame and body pontoon so visualizing that distance made it easy to decide if the frame has to be shimmied to the side. Once the body was all the way down, I found the A/C hoses on both sides were getting pinched between the body and frame. This is because I had zip-tied them to the frame flange which is really unnecessary and just makes it harder to get everything where it needs to be as the body goes down. I cut the zip ties and re-positioned the hoses while lifting the body up another inch to get it just right.

Also, lots of laughs when we realized I left the seatbelt bolts threaded into the frame....

It took about 3 hours but we had everything lined up nicely and I got all the body bolts back in except the driver side front tunnel bolt which was a bit off. However by the next morning as everything settled I was able to get it in.

My pointed-tip bolts were in generally poor condition so I didn't reuse them. Instead I got new M10 bolts of the correct lengths from Belmetric (standard type bolt with silver zinc plating). I put a bit of anti seize on each bolt and didn't have any trouble getting them to thread into the square captive nuts.

At this point that was PLENTY for the night so Dave took his leave and I retired into the house for dinner and a beer or two :-) Needless to say, I was VERY relieved to have all bolt holes lining up and my body no longer up in the air.

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Mark D
10-26-2022, 01:02 PM
I'd leave off the lock washers in favor of a distorted thread/oval toplock, or spiralock type locking nut.

In theory split lock washers sound like they would help prevent the nut from loosening, but in practice they do almost nothing.

From your photos it looks like Josh may have updated the latest generation of his kit to include locking nuts. If they don't spin on freely by hand then they are probably locking type nuts. Oval toplock nuts usually have indentations where the upper threads were pressed from an O to an 0.

https://www.mcmaster.com/locknuts/nut-type~locknut/locking-type~distorted-thread/

82DMC12
10-26-2022, 01:13 PM
I'd leave off the lock washers in favor of a distorted thread/oval toplock, or spiralock type locking nut.

In theory split lock washers sound like they would help prevent the nut from loosening, but in practice they do almost nothing.

From your photos it looks like Josh may have updated the latest generation of his kit to include locking nuts. If they don't spin on freely by hand then they are probably locking type nuts. Oval toplock nuts usually have indentations where the upper threads were pressed from an O to an 0.

https://www.mcmaster.com/locknuts/nut-type~locknut/locking-type~distorted-thread/

Mark,

The included nuts are not of the locking variety at all. They spin on freely. I put a lock washer on both sides.

I think the Stage 1 exhaust I used to have included the distorted nut type you linked to.

I will have to check but I think the bolts are M10. Would you use the high strength type nut that you linked to? Zinc plated steel class 10.

https://www.mcmaster.com/locknuts/nut-type~locknut/locking-type~distorted-thread/high-strength-steel-top-lock-distorted-thread-locknuts/

Mark D
10-26-2022, 02:44 PM
I looked through what McMaster has listed and I'd probably go with the high strength (class 10) zinc plated you linked to. Just double check the thread pitch of the bolts to make sure you're getting the correct nuts. They come in 1.5 and 1.25 thread pitch.

Looks like they also have a flanged version as well, although they have a wider than standard flange so there might not be clearance.

https://www.mcmaster.com/right-hand-threaded-locknuts/locking-type~distorted-thread/metric-high-strength-steel-distorted-thread-flange-locknuts-class-10/

Mark D
10-26-2022, 03:14 PM
One other option you may want to consider is 316 stainless bolts. They're not as strong as steel, but they won't rust.

On my E46 BMW I replaced a bunch of studs with these SS bolts because I was tired of cutting off nuts and dealing with corrosion. That car has 370,000 miles on it now and I haven't broken any of the exhaust bolts yet.


Bolts (you may need longer or shorter length):
https://www.boltdepot.com/Product-Details.aspx?product=22121


Matching nuts:
https://www.boltdepot.com/Product-Details.aspx?product=23023

SupercoolBill
10-26-2022, 09:26 PM
47 days after lifting the body off of my old chassis... READY TO PUT IT ALL BACK TOGETHER!

painterdave72 (David Hudgins) came over after work to help with the heavy lifting. We rolled the chassis out into the street and took a few pictures, then turned it around and pushed it up the driveway and lined it back up under the body.

Before removing the chassis, fellow owner Alvin Erhart had the great advice to mark the floor with painter tape and a sharpie so I could find the centerline of each wheel when reinstalling everything. This was good advice so that we could get it "pretty close" in two dimensions before lowering the body back down.

When rolling back into place, you must be careful to ensure the radiator can go under both wood beams and then the gear stick has to clear the rear beam. The gear stick is probably 3 inches taller than the radiator is when everything is installed. This required us to lift the beams and body further than the level everything had been sitting for the last one and a half months. We went back and forth from front to back, simultaneously lifting the body further up 5 cranks at a time.

Once we were in place, we reversed our efforts and lowered the beams back to the outboard brick towers, then turned our second outer towers inboard so that they were directly under the corners of the body tub. Then we moved the jacks to those towers and lifted the body high enough to slide the beams out.

During the last few weeks I had noticed my rear beam had a crack in it but it didn't go all the way through the wood. This was unsettling, plus the 8 foot 4x4 beams were really the minimum length possible so my jacks were on the extreme outer edges of the beams during lifting and dropping. If I ever had to do this again, I would use FOUR beams while the body is at rest and I would use 10 foot beams to reduce the stress on the wood.

From here it was pretty simple - just remove a brick from the low tower, drop the body down to the next brick on the high tower, move the jack to the lower tower, then lift up slightly to slide the high tower brick out, and then drop it down again. Repeat repeat repeat. All while checking to make sure nothing gets hung up or pinched. Not much can really happen for the first 3/4 of the drop however I kept a close eye on the A/C dryer hose (dryer not installed but the hose can get stuck on the upper A-arm) as well as the vacuum lines, fuel lines, and engine harness since they have to make their way above the lip in the body. You also want to make sure the positive battery cable is laying on top of the passenger side trailing arm and you might as well feed it back into the body once you have the opportunity to.

As we got closer to the body resting on the frame, the next challenge was making sure the frame was truly centered under the body. We used the front shock tower holes in the trunk as a visual guide for the front and the horizontal body bolt holes in the pontoons as a rear guide. On my car, two washers go between the frame and body pontoon so visualizing that distance made it easy to decide if the frame has to be shimmied to the side. Once the body was all the way down, I found the A/C hoses on both sides were getting pinched between the body and frame. This is because I had zip-tied them to the frame flange which is really unnecessary and just makes it harder to get everything where it needs to be as the body goes down. I cut the zip ties and re-positioned the hoses while lifting the body up another inch to get it just right.

Also, lots of laughs when we realized I left the seatbelt bolts threaded into the frame....

It took about 3 hours but we had everything lined up nicely and I got all the body bolts back in except the driver side front tunnel bolt which was a bit off. However by the next morning as everything settled I was able to get it in.

My pointed-tip bolts were in generally poor condition so I didn't reuse them. Instead I got new M10 bolts of the correct lengths from Belmetric (standard type bolt with silver zinc plating). I put a bit of anti seize on each bolt and didn't have any trouble getting them to thread into the square captive nuts.

At this point that was PLENTY for the night so Dave took his leave and I retired into the house for dinner and a beer or two :-) Needless to say, I was VERY relieved to have all bolt holes lining up and my body no longer up in the air.

69140

69141

69142

69143

69144

69145

69146

69147

69148

69149

69150I noticed my 4x4s sagging in the middle after a while so I ended up putting a pipe stand under the middle of each 4x4.
I agree that two softwood 4x4s is not strong enough.


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SupercoolBill
10-26-2022, 09:31 PM
What about regular SS nuts and bolts with thread locker?

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Helirich
10-27-2022, 11:56 AM
What about regular SS nuts and bolts with thread locker?

Sent from my SM-F926U1 using Tapatalk

Not sure how hot those get. Most thread locker has a temp where it releases.

BTW, 82DMC12, that last post is fantastic!

82DMC12
10-27-2022, 06:33 PM
Dave and I put the body back on the frame on a Wednesday, and thankfully I still had Thursday and Friday off so I could get to work putting everything back together. You'd think it would be no big deal from here on out, but that's never the case.

The day prior, as we were pushing the chassis around, Dave noticed that one of the lower threads on my driver side coilover was contacting the inside of the LCA. I thought it was due to no weight on the frame and many of the suspension bolts are not tightened yet (wanting to do this with the weight on the body on the suspension). Anyway, the next day I looked at it again and realized I had the spacers swapped inside the LCA (there is a small one and a large one). So, I had to address that right away which took about 2 hours to partially disassemble and put back together with surgical cleanliness.

Then, I started to work on the brakes. First thing I wanted to do was to reconnect the parking brake cables so that I can lock the rear wheels now that everything is on the ground again. I don't need the car to get away from me out the driveway. This was fairly easy to do once I remembered how to route the cables, however the passenger side was a bit difficult to set up due to the new DPI brake line system I'm using. The AN fitting for the caliper is taller than stock so it will contact the parking lever if it's at the most relaxed position (lever fully up against the caliper). The trick is to use the two nuts on either side of the bracket so you can pull the cable backwards, thus pulling the lever inboard so it "stops" at a position that won't hit the brake pipe. This took a few minutes to kind of figure out but it didn't take long to get the parking brake adjusted properly once again.

Now, it was time to flush and bleed the brakes. First thing I did was remove the brake master cylinder since I wanted to bench bleed it. I was dismayed to find fluid inside the bore and in the recess of the brake booster which I had just refinished last fall. This brake master cylinder (DMCH repro) was a new cylinder but it had been sealed in plastic for a few years and sitting on my shelf. Previously I had a Saab BMC which was great but the plating was worn off and I had just recently shipped it off to PJ Grady to get rebuilt. Unfortunately things move slow these days in the cylinder rebuilding world so my good cylinder was not back yet. Well, that sucks.

Then I turned to the clutch master cylinder. I am now using a one-piece clutch line from DPI which converts the clutch master cylinder to an AN fitting that works with the one piece line that goes all the way back to the clutch slave. Both the slave and master are freshly rebuilt from Rob, however I could not for the life of me get the clutch master to bleed out. Just a splittle of fluid was coming out of the output. I tried a lot of things including jacking up the rear of the car, using a vacuum bleeder, using a Motive power bleeder, nothing was freaking working. Finally I took the cylinder out of the car so I could try to bench bleed it, only to find that the cylinder is cracked! So, I have replacement on the way there, too..... so much for my hydraulics!

Oh... and then I found the throttle cable finally started to come apart as I threaded it through the throttle stop. Damn! I guess it's time for another parts order.

69156

69157

69158

69159

82DMC12
10-28-2022, 04:18 PM
By Saturday I had pretty much finished hooking everything up in the engine area and front frame area. Including:



Brushed the old anti seize out of my steering column intermediate shaft and u-joints (Darryl Tinnerstet system) and re-applied fresh, then easily slid the steering back together
Hooked up the fans, horns, front frame ground
Installed a new A/C accumulator and new green o-rings all around, double-checked all A/C connections and made sure it is sealed up and ready for a vacuum and charge
Installed lower speedo cable
New inner throttle wire
Zip tied various hoses, harnesses, etc into ideal locations and out of the way of danger
Pressure tested cooling system and found only one leak after 24 hours - that heater take-off from the driver side head. Tightened the hose clamp with a ratchet and now dry.
Routed engine harness, main vacuum, and other bits in an ideal way


At this point it appears I could try to start the engine and bleed the coolant! And so I installed the battery and after triple checking I had the correct amount of oil in the engine, gave the key a turned and it fired right up!!

I let it run for about 30 seconds until I could see a bit of something burning off on the passenger side near the exhaust. I assumed this was just anti seize from the exhaust studs burning off but I figured I can't be too careful so I shut off the engine - and as I turned the key to off, the starter was still running!

Hmm. Well the best thing to do at this point was to disconnect the battery and then try to figure out how this could be happening. I had a similar problem happen once after doing starter wiring maintenance last year where one of the big positive wires was positioned well enough away from the small stud, and the small stud wore a hole in the heat shrink, causing the positive cable to bridge the solenoid and keep it engaged.

That was not the case this time, however I found conflicting information about how to wire up a new-style starter. One document I had from DMCNW said to put both red/white and blue/yellow on the same small terminal, which is what I did. Then, on DMCTalk, I found a photo showing the red/white on the small terminal and the blue/yellow on the big black terminal that goes into the starter casing. I cut the small ring terminal off and had to go Autozone to get a 5/16" ring terminal. I crimped and heat shrank that terminal on and then re-installed. I started the car again, and this time no after-run issues. This time I let the engine heat up enough to get the fans running (those DPI fans sound STRONG) and then I bled out the top of the radiator (DPI bleed kit) and the thermostat housing (DPNW kit). Once these seemed OK I stopped the engine and let it cool down for the night.

The next day I topped up the reservoir and repeated the bleeding process. I think I have it pretty good now!

What else... well I cleaned up the driveway by bringing my old frame, the bricks, and wood beams out to another owner's farm about 90 minutes from my house. He was kind enough to offer to let me store the frame there until I sell it, and he said he'd take those construction supplies off my hands if I don't want them anymore. That took a full morning but by then I was ready for a break anyway.

Before packing the frame up, I took a video showing all the details of it so that a buyer might be fully informed as to the condition. You can watch that video here:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IlP-ZYsg2FY

Time for some family time.

Oh, and here was my view out the bedroom window the day after putting the chassis back under the body.

69164

82DMC12
11-08-2022, 02:02 PM
Looks like I'm behind on my blog again! Let's see if I can get us caught up.

Since my last update, I've pretty much buttoned the car back up including


Bought a new spare tire to mount on my rim. The 42 year old Goodyear was worthless anyway!
paint the seatbelt mounting hardware and install it
use spray adhesive to attach the carpet back up to the center tunnel
Reinstall the center console
Install the rear fascia
Install the refinished engine cover and adjust hinges/latches
Install DPI exhaust tips to the muffler now that the bumper is on so I can center everything
Run the engine up to temp a couple times and triple check cooling system bleed status. Looks good in the garage anyway - fans are coming on just past the first line on the temp gauge and they run for a few minutes before cycling off ; engine temp is holding steady
Install a new inner throttle cable (DPI supplied part) because my old one, which I replaced once like 20 years ago with hardware store cable wire, was too frayed at the throttle end to move smoothly
Shampooed carpets and reinstalled the seats


I'm still waiting on a good brake and clutch master cylinder set, so unfortunately the car is not mobile.

Other than that, I've been working on the air conditioning. About 8 years ago I replaced the whole A/C system with a kit from John Hervey which has worked fine but if I am going to do any updates to it, now is the time to do it.

I decided to upgrade the Sanden SD5H14 compressor (5 piston) to an SD7H15 (7 piston compressor). I received the compressor from an online Sanden distributor and installed it last week. I also bought a vacuum pump from Harbor Freight so I could vacuum the system down and make sure I have no leaks. At that point I wasn't sure if I wanted to recharge the system myself or let an expert do it, but I'm glad I bought the pump because it revealed a couple issues.

First, I found the low pressure switch was leaking at the accumulator. Interesting to note that I replace the o-ring for the switch but it appears if you tighten the switch too far, it will leak at the threads. If you back it off half a turn, it stops leaking. I suppose the o-ring gets pinched or something if you go too hard on it.

Once I knew I had no leaks and I was holding great vacuum for an hour, I decided I might as well try to charge it up. This revealed further issues, namely that the alleged high pressure switch I have in my car from Hervey doesn't seem to be a HP switch at all, in fact it seems to be a second low pressure switch based on the operating range printed on it. After further investigation, I seemed I was not able to find a replacement switch that will fit the hub I have which is already of questionable value since the sight glass doesn't really work. So, I decided to replace the high pressure line between the condenser and evaporator with a new line from DPI and have a new high pressure switch set up included. This would then eliminate the high pressure relief valve that was integrated into my hub.

What should be a simple solution to this is not so simple - I was going to replace the back on my compressor with one that has the HPR built into it. I bought a QD head for the compressor (https://coldhose.com/collections/sanden-compressor-heads/products/sanden-qd-rear-compressor-head?variant=35532191957152) only to find after installation that my high pressure main line will not mate up to it because the fitting size is slightly too small.

I called the supplier and they told me the QD head is model-specific so it's not surprising that it doesn't fit the same as the QC head already on the compressor. I called Sanden to see if they have a QD head with HPR and they told me that these days no one is really using a HPR because it would vent the freon out to the atmosphere (which apparently some people have a problem with!). They said these days the high pressure switch is relied on to do the job and if it didn't work, there is often a heat-sensitive fuse installed that would turn off the compressor if the high pressure got too high (and hot).

So, at this point I haven't made a decision how to move ahead on this. I guess the newer hoses from DPI and other vendors use a bit different connection adapter to the head so the HPR is still integrated in the head but the lines will mate up. I am not going to replace my hoses over this, though. I could also buy a new "condenser adapter" 110527 which would have a provision for a relief valve if I really wanted it. At this point I'm inclined to go without the valve at all and just make sure I have a functioning high pressure switch. The Sanden tech said the HPR is kind of a joke anyway because it's usually set for like 400 PSI and by then the compressor is already damaged.

A few more progress pics -

69184

69185

69186

69187

69188

69189

69190

69191

69192

82DMC12
11-08-2022, 02:08 PM
Here are a few pictures of the refinished engine cover. I added new stickers which I attached with some heat-resistant spray adhesive. The Emissions sticker and the Negative Ground sticker probably would have held by themselves but the NOS vacuum diagram would not release from the backing even with a heat gun. I decided to leave the backing on and adhere the backing to the engine cover. I used a 3M spray adhesive. I finished up the job with new bump stops from Chris Miles.

69193

69194

69195

69196

82DMC12
11-10-2022, 12:03 PM
Not much new this week!

I was going through some older photos to see if I missed anything. I had the seats out and noticed that I was missing the plastic outer trim piece for the driver seat. I never noticed this until I compared the passenger side to the driver side. I was able to find a nice used trim piece from Ed at DMC EU (the part is NLA). The "N4" screws that are used are also NLA but I was able to find some #8 black machine screws at the hardware store that worked perfectly fine. I did have to use a dremel to enlarge the round hole that the rake adjustment knob goes onto. I don't know why that would need to be done but perhaps my seat is a bit off after getting foam and leather surfaces replaced many years ago. Maybe that's why the trim piece was missing/ left off. Anyway, I was able to massage it and get it all to work as it should.

I also took the time to install the DPI fuel injector clamp set. Here's a pro tip - don't drop any of the stainless clamps between the distributor and the intake runner - you'll have a bad time. All good now though!

The rest of my AC parts have shipped so I should be able to get it all back together and possibly charged next week but I might wait until spring because I'd rather do it on a hot-ass day when ambient temp is closer to a hot summer day so I can better monitor the head pressure. We'll see what happens.

69198

69199

69200

SupercoolBill
11-10-2022, 09:34 PM
Not much new this week!

I was going through some older photos to see if I missed anything. I had the seats out and noticed that I was missing the plastic outer trim piece for the driver seat. I never noticed this until I compared the passenger side to the driver side. I was able to find a nice used trim piece from Ed at DMC EU (the part is NLA). The "N4" screws that are used are also NLA but I was able to find some #8 black machine screws at the hardware store that worked perfectly fine. I did have to use a dremel to enlarge the round hole that the rake adjustment knob goes onto. I don't know why that would need to be done but perhaps my seat is a bit off after getting foam and leather surfaces replaced many years ago. Maybe that's why the trim piece was missing/ left off. Anyway, I was able to massage it and get it all to work as it should.

I also took the time to install the DPI fuel injector clamp set. Here's a pro tip - don't drop any of the stainless clamps between the distributor and the intake runner - you'll have a bad time. All good now though!

The rest of my AC parts have shipped so I should be able to get it all back together and possibly charged next week but I might wait until spring because I'd rather do it on a hot-ass day when ambient temp is closer to a hot summer day so I can better monitor the head pressure. We'll see what happens.

69198

69199

69200I have the same injector retainers. Probably overkill but they are really nice.

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SupercoolBill
11-10-2022, 09:37 PM
Here are a few pictures of the refinished engine cover. I added new stickers which I attached with some heat-resistant spray adhesive. The Emissions sticker and the Negative Ground sticker probably would have held by themselves but the NOS vacuum diagram would not release from the backing even with a heat gun. I decided to leave the backing on and adhere the backing to the engine cover. I used a 3M spray adhesive. I finished up the job with new bump stops from Chris Miles.

69193

69194

69195

69196Nice!
Looks great!

Sent from my SM-F926U1 using Tapatalk

SupercoolBill
11-12-2022, 07:24 AM
Looks like I'm behind on my blog again! Let's see if I can get us caught up.

Since my last update, I've pretty much buttoned the car back up including


Bought a new spare tire to mount on my rim. The 42 year old Goodyear was worthless anyway!
paint the seatbelt mounting hardware and install it
use spray adhesive to attach the carpet back up to the center tunnel
Reinstall the center console
Install the rear fascia
Install the refinished engine cover and adjust hinges/latches
Install DPI exhaust tips to the muffler now that the bumper is on so I can center everything
Run the engine up to temp a couple times and triple check cooling system bleed status. Looks good in the garage anyway - fans are coming on just past the first line on the temp gauge and they run for a few minutes before cycling off ; engine temp is holding steady
Install a new inner throttle cable (DPI supplied part) because my old one, which I replaced once like 20 years ago with hardware store cable wire, was too frayed at the throttle end to move smoothly
Shampooed carpets and reinstalled the seats


I'm still waiting on a good brake and clutch master cylinder set, so unfortunately the car is not mobile.

Other than that, I've been working on the air conditioning. About 8 years ago I replaced the whole A/C system with a kit from John Hervey which has worked fine but if I am going to do any updates to it, now is the time to do it.

I decided to upgrade the Sanden SD5H14 compressor (5 piston) to an SD7H15 (7 piston compressor). I received the compressor from an online Sanden distributor and installed it last week. I also bought a vacuum pump from Harbor Freight so I could vacuum the system down and make sure I have no leaks. At that point I wasn't sure if I wanted to recharge the system myself or let an expert do it, but I'm glad I bought the pump because it revealed a couple issues.

First, I found the low pressure switch was leaking at the accumulator. Interesting to note that I replace the o-ring for the switch but it appears if you tighten the switch too far, it will leak at the threads. If you back it off half a turn, it stops leaking. I suppose the o-ring gets pinched or something if you go too hard on it.

Once I knew I had no leaks and I was holding great vacuum for an hour, I decided I might as well try to charge it up. This revealed further issues, namely that the alleged high pressure switch I have in my car from Hervey doesn't seem to be a HP switch at all, in fact it seems to be a second low pressure switch based on the operating range printed on it. After further investigation, I seemed I was not able to find a replacement switch that will fit the hub I have which is already of questionable value since the sight glass doesn't really work. So, I decided to replace the high pressure line between the condenser and evaporator with a new line from DPI and have a new high pressure switch set up included. This would then eliminate the high pressure relief valve that was integrated into my hub.

What should be a simple solution to this is not so simple - I was going to replace the back on my compressor with one that has the HPR built into it. I bought a QD head for the compressor (https://coldhose.com/collections/sanden-compressor-heads/products/sanden-qd-rear-compressor-head?variant=35532191957152) only to find after installation that my high pressure main line will not mate up to it because the fitting size is slightly too small.

I called the supplier and they told me the QD head is model-specific so it's not surprising that it doesn't fit the same as the QC head already on the compressor. I called Sanden to see if they have a QD head with HPR and they told me that these days no one is really using a HPR because it would vent the freon out to the atmosphere (which apparently some people have a problem with!). They said these days the high pressure switch is relied on to do the job and if it didn't work, there is often a heat-sensitive fuse installed that would turn off the compressor if the high pressure got too high (and hot).

So, at this point I haven't made a decision how to move ahead on this. I guess the newer hoses from DPI and other vendors use a bit different connection adapter to the head so the HPR is still integrated in the head but the lines will mate up. I am not going to replace my hoses over this, though. I could also buy a new "condenser adapter" 110527 which would have a provision for a relief valve if I really wanted it. At this point I'm inclined to go without the valve at all and just make sure I have a functioning high pressure switch. The Sanden tech said the HPR is kind of a joke anyway because it's usually set for like 400 PSI and by then the compressor is already damaged.

A few more progress pics -

69184

69185

69186

69187

69188

69189

69190

69191

69192Is that amplifier just for the subwoofer or does it also power mids and highs?

Sent from my SM-F926U1 using Tapatalk

82DMC12
11-13-2022, 12:08 PM
Is that amplifier just for the subwoofer or does it also power mids and highs?

Sent from my SM-F926U1 using Tapatalk

That amp is just for the sub (Kicker L7 8" solo baric). I have a Zapco 4-ch and powers my dash speakers, front kick panel speakers (add on), and the new 6" round rear speakers.

69203

82DMC12
11-13-2022, 12:37 PM
All right all right, got a couple more parts in and buttoned up the A/C once again this weekend.

I replaced the "Hervey Hub" on the high pressure side with a new kit from D-Ind which contained a standard white orifice tube, a new high pressure hose to connect to the evaporator and then run to the condenser, and a high pressure switch that screws into the new fitting on the condenser-side hose. It also comes with new wrapped wiring that joins the original wires at the firewall with a WeatherPack plug. Very nice and definitely an upgrade! Now I have a high pressure cut-out switch which I was surprised to find I was lacking before.

To install the hose, I had to remove the accumulator again just because the access to the fittings is so poor in that area, plus even if I were able to barely get a wrench on, it is not so easy to get the fittings started in that small space. Pain in the ass but maybe I'll never have to go in here ever again.

Good think I changed out the orifice tube. It was much dirtier than I expected. DPI recommended going back to the original style basic orifice instead of the variable orifice that Hervey sold so I did that. I blew out the evaporator with compressed air and there was nothing but oil in it.

One thing I like about the DPI hose is I didn't have to tap the orifice tube completely into the evaporator like I did with the old hose. The ID of the fitting on the DPI hose is slightly larger than the Hervey hose fitting was so I only had to get the o-ring on the orifice past the interior crimp and then tapped in maybe half an inch, then the DPI hose slips over the remaining front of the orifice tube. That should be good insurance if I have to remove the tube again and it gets stuck.

Currently vacuuming the system down now. It's probably too cold out (30F) to get a good charge in my garage so I'm thinking I'll probably have to wait until spring or an unseasonably warm day to actually fill it up. I'll be glad to just confirm no leaks at this point.

So, what else is left?


Waiting on clutch master cylinder to get rebuilt
Waiting on brake master cylinder to get rebuilt
Charge A/C
Add on the front radiator shroud but I didn't want to do that until I was sure I was done messing with A/C hoses
Flush and bleed brakes and clutch once the cylinders are in
Final routing and zip-tie hoses, wiring etc.
Final cross gate adjustment (might still have to replace the cross gate cable though)
Wheel alignment


Not much else I can do until cylinders come in so I think I'll start zip-tying and buttoning down the final resting place of a few hoses and wires.



69204

69205

69206

69207

69208

69209

Bitsyncmaster
11-13-2022, 02:37 PM
That orifice tube looks really bad. I would recommend you flush your system.

Ron
11-13-2022, 02:51 PM
That orifice tube looks really bad. I would recommend you flush your system.
Absolutely!!!

82DMC12
11-13-2022, 03:03 PM
Absolutely!!!

I'm open to suggestions. Doesn't a good flush require an A/C charge machine like at a shop?

Ron
11-13-2022, 03:12 PM
I'm open to suggestions. Doesn't a good flush require an A/C charge machine like at a shop?You can rent-to-buy a kit from places like Autozone (Link (https://www.autozone.com/diy/climate-control/how-to-flush-your-cars-ac-system)).
I wouldn't do the new parts (never the Accumulator/Receiver Dryer).

FWIW- It looks like someone may have performed a 134a conversion without flushing the R12 type oil, once upon a time.

82DMC12
11-13-2022, 03:29 PM
You can rent-to-buy a kit from places like Autozone (Link (https://www.autozone.com/diy/climate-control/how-to-flush-your-cars-ac-system)).
I wouldn't do the new parts (never the Accumulator/Receiver Dryer).

FWIW- It looks like someone may have performed a 134a conversion without flushing the R12 type oil, once upon a time.

This car did have the R12 converted to R134a a LONG time ago. In fact it had to be recharged a couple times before I broke down and replaced literally everything except the evaporator about 7 years ago. It held charge and worked well ever since then. That's why I was surprised to see how bad the orifice was. Can't believe there could be much dirt anymore at this point. I put an SD7H15 compressor in now and took out the SD5H14 that I originally put in 7 years ago. The oil in the SD5 looked good but a bit orange. Replaced the oil obviously with the new compressor.

Ron
11-13-2022, 03:46 PM
This car did have the R12 converted to R134a a LONG time ago. In fact it had to be recharged a couple times before I broke down and replaced literally everything except the evaporator about 7 years ago. It held charge and worked well ever since then. That's why I was surprised to see how bad the orifice was. Can't believe there could be much dirt anymore at this point. I put an SD7H15 compressor in now and took out the SD5H14 that I originally put in 7 years ago. The oil in the SD5 looked good but a bit orange. Replaced the oil obviously with the new compressor.If they didn't change the oil, that's where the black probably came from (mixing of some oil types), "black death". It will coat things and catch particles while fowling up lubrication. I'd flush the system (minus accumulator, capping it off meanwhile). Then add the recommended amount oil, new. Nothing to loose at this point but a few bucks for peace of mind...

FWIW- That's not dirt, it can't get into a clean, tight system. It's probably wear particles from the compressor and/or black death.

82DMC12
11-13-2022, 04:56 PM
If they didn't change the oil, that's where the black probably came from (mixing of some oil types), "black death". It will coat things and catch particles while fowling up lubrication. I'd flush the system (minus accumulator, capping it off meanwhile). Then add the recommended amount oil, new. Nothing to loose at this point but a few bucks for peace of mind...

FWIW- That's not dirt, it can't get into a clean, tight system. It's probably wear particles from the compressor and/or black death.

Black Death - that doesn't sound good! Unless you can flush the system with everything in place, I doubt the old shop way back when did a flush. I bet all they did was change the compressor oil.

Ron
11-13-2022, 05:21 PM
Black Death - that doesn't sound good! Unless you can flush the system with everything in place, I doubt the old shop way back when did a flush.
...
You can do that, but then you would replace the accumulator. That would be OK....You just don't want the accumulator exposed to moisture in the air, etc. (except for the time it takes to mount it, followed by a evacuation, asap).

Bitsyncmaster
11-13-2022, 06:11 PM
I flush a system by filling or pumping a solvent through. Pull hose ends off the compressor and cross over hose at the accumulator and flush the condenser that way. Fill at the compressor end and collect the solvent at the cross over hose end. Blow air through it after the flush. Then do the evaporator filling at the compressor end and collecting the solvent at the evaporator end. Replace the accumulator. If your compressor is new it should be fine and with the correct oil.

SupercoolBill
11-13-2022, 07:46 PM
You have all new stuff except your evap and condenser right? I don't see a need to flush the whole system. That orifice inlet screen was really dirty!

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SupercoolBill
11-13-2022, 07:50 PM
The system flushes I think are alcohol based so they quickly evaporatorate leaving no moisture or residue.https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20221113/34e552a179a7e90841f2d20fc0d11821.jpg

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82DMC12
11-13-2022, 09:34 PM
You have all new stuff except your evap and condenser right? I don't see a need to flush the whole system. That orifice inlet screen was really dirty!

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New condenser 7 years ago. Literally the only thing I never replaced was the evaporator. I THINK I flushed it out, somehow, with something, when I replaced everything else but I didn't have that pressurized kit.

I'm guessing it's Black Death from old R12 oil.

82DMC12
11-14-2022, 04:48 PM
I was working on the A/C a bit more last night and come to find that my low pressure switch is definitely an issue with leakage. It worked OK until I took everything apart for the frame-off so perhaps it was damaged somehow. I'm going to order a new low pressure switch and green o-ring for it then try to vacuum again.

I was not particularly satisfied with my gauge readings when trying to hold a vacuum. It seemed to indicate I may have a leak somewhere, with the gauge falling from 30 to 20 inches after about 30 minutes, but then it held 20 inches for about four hours - until I screwed the low pressure switch back in - then I lost all vacuum within an hour. The initial drop could be the gauges.... could be temperature change in the garage... could be a leak. I guess a micron gauge is the correct tool to really monitor vacuum. Prior to replacing the high pressure hose (which required removing the accumulator), a few weeks ago the vacuum held better. So I think I'm going to pressurize with nitrogen and check for leaks that way before doing anything else with the A/C. I might not be able to do any more A/C work until spring so I'd like to know I'm leak-free and at least charge with nitrogen so the system isn't empty all winter.

I already have the manifold gauge set, so adding a nitrogen purge is not difficult. I have a 20 cu ft nitrogen tank at work which I just got exchanged for a full bottle ($35) and I ordered a regulator for it off Amazon which will connect to my yellow hose on the manifold set. I watched some videos and it looks like 150 PSI is typical for leak detection. Should be able to hear a small leak, and could use foaming water to detect micro leaks.

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Bitsyncmaster
11-14-2022, 05:53 PM
HVAC guys use nitrogen to find leaks because they pressurize the system to max pressure and then use a soap spray to check or find leaks. For my home system he pressurized to 400 PSI and found the leak in the attic evaporator pipe. The first guy used a sniffer and could not find any leaks (he was a new tech, the owner's son).

For our cars I would use 300 PSI.

82DMC12
11-14-2022, 06:05 PM
HVAC guys use nitrogen to find leaks because they pressurize the system to max pressure and then use a soap spray to check or find leaks. For my home system he pressurized to 400 PSI and found the leak in the attic evaporator pipe. The first guy used a sniffer and could not find any leaks (he was a new tech, the owner's son).

For our cars I would use 300 PSI.


300 PSI, really? I saw a couple references to 250 PSI possibly damaging stuff on the low side.

Bitsyncmaster
11-14-2022, 07:45 PM
300 PSI, really? I saw a couple references to 250 PSI possibly damaging stuff on the low side.

If you loose the cooling fans you will get 300 PSI on the high side. The low side should have the same rated component as the high side. Yes maybe a 40 year old hose may not hold but then it should be replaced.

82DMC12
11-14-2022, 08:19 PM
If you loose the cooling fans you will get 300 PSI on the high side. The low side should have the same rated component as the high side. Yes maybe a 40 year old hose may not hold but then it should be replaced.

I'm just worried about the evaporator!

Helirich
11-15-2022, 01:08 PM
One thing I will mention, I have found many gauge set hoses leak. What I often do is put a ?block off? valve on the end of the hose. Vacuum the system out and shut the valve. Wait however long you want, than vacuum the hose out again, shut the pump off and open the valve. Since the system is much larger than your gauge set, it will still go down if there?s a leak.

On the micron gauge, it is best, but I have never found a system that doesn?t go down with a micron. It?s not necessary a leak, it can just be stuff evaporating.

82DMC12
11-15-2022, 11:10 PM
One thing I will mention, I have found many gauge set hoses leak. What I often do is put a ?block off? valve on the end of the hose. Vacuum the system out and shut the valve. Wait however long you want, than vacuum the hose out again, shut the pump off and open the valve. Since the system is much larger than your gauge set, it will still go down if there?s a leak.

On the micron gauge, it is best, but I have never found a system that doesn?t go down with a micron. It?s not necessary a leak, it can just be stuff evaporating.Thanks for the input. Got my nitrogen tank ready to go, new low pressure switch and o-ring on the way, and will have a regulator and some big blu spray on Thursday. Hopefully this weekend I can try pumping it up and see what I find.

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82DMC12
11-19-2022, 06:22 PM
Weekend update!

I got a new low pressure switch and green o-ring. The new one is different from the one I received from Hervey so many years ago and seems to fit MUCH better on the accumulator. I can tighten it by hand until it stops and it doesn't feel squishy at the end and there are no leaks at that point now.

I did get my regulator and nitrogen tank however the regulator has a 1/4" flare connection on the output and it appears what I need for my yellow R134a hose is 1/2" Acme M. That is the flare-like fitting with the long flat end on it, just like the Schrader valves off the compressor. I tried to find something locally that would work to convert the fitting but no luck. I suppose this issue doesn't come up if you have a commercial automotive HVAC machine. I think they came up with these fittings just to discourage DIY'ers but I'm not easily deterred.

The only solution I could find is this thing, which I would have to screw onto a brass 1/4" nipple that threads into the regulator:
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000LQN6HM/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

I ordered it and will have it tomorrow.

I still wanted to see if my low pressure leak was fixed though, and I had a couple ideas as to how to do a better job measuring vacuum integrity of the A/C system. After installing the switch, I pulled a vacuum again for 90 minutes, then closed all the valves on the gauge set and removed the gauge set from the compressor.

This morning I came back out to the garage and hooked up the gauge set, but left the schraeders closed at the compressor. I pulled a vacuum on the gauge set first, then closed the manifold valves and turned off the pump. Now my manifold is under vacuum but not connected to the car's A/C system (yet). I let this sit alone for 10 minutes to confirm I'm not leaking out of the gauges. I lost a tiny bit, like half an inch of vacuum. Good enough. Now I opened my schraeders so that the vacuum in the car could equalize with the vacuum in the gauges. My theory is if the car is leaking vacuum overnight, the gauges would drop. They did not. So, I feel pretty good that my system is actually tight now.

I made a video which I'll post up on the How To section demonstrating this:


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1CXDIynB5cw

I still plan to pressure test with nitrogen though because first, I want the experience of it, and second, I'll make a video demonstrating that technique as well. Thirdly, since it's too cold to recharge the A/C this winter, I'm going to fill the system with maybe 50 PSI of nitrogen so that there isn't any moisture sitting in there over the winter.

Bitsyncmaster
11-19-2022, 07:23 PM
Good idea to keep a nitrogen charge in it but you should probably pull the connector off the low pressure switch so your compressor can't run without the refrigerant which carries the oil around the system.

82DMC12
11-19-2022, 09:09 PM
Good idea to keep a nitrogen charge in it but you should probably pull the connector off the low pressure switch so your compressor can't run without the refrigerant which carries the oil around the system.

Wise and prudent!! Good idea.

82DMC12
11-24-2022, 12:16 PM
I now have a functioning nitrogen test system for my A/C.

Parts:


Harbor Freight R134a manifold gauge set: https://www.harborfreight.com/r134a-ac-manifold-gauge-set-58776.html?_br_psugg_q=manifold
Harbor Freight 1 stage vacuum pump: https://www.harborfreight.com/25-cfm-vacuum-pump-61245.html
Betooll Nitogen gauge and regulator: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01IJI04XW?psc=1&ref=ppx_yo2ov_dt_b_product_details
Mastercool #82634 1/4" female flare to 1/2" ACME-M (this connects the yellow hose on manifold gauge set to the nitrogen regulator output): https://www.amazon.com/dp/B000LQN6HM?psc=1&ref=ppx_yo2ov_dt_b_product_details
Brass 1/4" MIP x2" nipple (Menards or any hardware store)
Brass 1/4" FIP x 1/4" male flare adapter (Menards or any hardware store)
20 cu ft nitrogen tank (available at welding supply stores)


Now I'm able to both draw sufficient vacuum for recharging and pressure-test the system with nitrogen to ensure there are no leaks.

Currently pressurized to 225 PSI for the last 24 hours with no pressure loss. Since we are now in winter in Kansas City I am going to leave the system full of nitrogen until spring so I can get a really good charge into it.

I'll make a video this weekend showing how I am using the nitrogen since I don't see anything like that in the HOW TO section!

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This is the elusive ACME-M fitting. Notice how it is like a flare fitting but has a flat tall tip on it. It's the same fitting you find on your high and low pressure lines for testing and charging. I could not find this at any HVAC stores in Kansas City, had to order online.




















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Betooll brass nitrogen gauge set. Hard to believe it's only $30. I've used gauges that are $300 and they aren't much better. Excellent value for the DIY'er.
















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Harbor Freight gauge set. I initially tested at 150 PSI then after 4 hours of no leaks bumped it up to 250 PSI.










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New Sanden SD7H15 compressor

















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SupercoolBill
11-28-2022, 07:08 AM
Perseverance pays off! You'll have some ice cold AC next summer. [emoji41]

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