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Thread: VIN 5510 - Bill's DeLorean Restoration

  1. #51
    Senior Member
    Join Date:  May 2019

    Location:  Ellensburg, WA

    Posts:    118

    My VIN:    5510

    Cross-post from the daily thread:

    Had a pretty fun day today - this is the first time I've driven the DeLorean on a highway!

    I visited a place called Stew's Garage in Kirkland, WA (Totem Lake). This is a shop space where you can rent a bay, complete with a full suite of tools and a car lift. For roughly $100 I rented a bay for two hours, and it was AMAZING!! With the car up on the 4-post lift I could easily torque down all of the suspension components, which was the plan. I also poked around to try and figure out where the transmission is leaking from (In short - everywhere). It was nice to be able to have all the high quality tools available, and I surely got more done in 2 hours than I could do in a full day at home.

    On the way to the garage I took only back roads, it's about 10 miles away or so, and it did really well. I was pretty nervous, since the farthest drive since the rebuild has been around the block!! On the drive home I was much more confident, and took the highway. Got it up to about 70 with no major issues.

    As far as I can tell, there seems to be a small exhaust leak when I give it some gas. I can also hear a slight squealing at higher RPMs. The gas gauge is definitely not right. Temperature gauge seems low (fans come on, though). I got a little bit of smoke on the way home, but this is probably the exhaust paint & wrap, and it stopped. The steering wheel isn't centered - and the car needs an alignment. And lastly, the automatic is just... Ooof, especially as far as power is concerned. It will trigger the kick down switch and max out at about 3krpm, but going up steep hills takes a lot. It's begging for that EV conversion.

  2. #52
    Senior Member
    Join Date:  May 2019

    Location:  Ellensburg, WA

    Posts:    118

    My VIN:    5510

    It's been a while since I did a video, so this one catches up on the last few weeks:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G84Sbmb12GQ

    Since my last text update I have fixed the heater core pipes and then installed the lines so the heater core is working, and I get heat in the cabin. I also cleaned up all the windows and removed stickers and stuff like that, so the view is MUCH better now. Lastly, I went to a local alignment shop recommended by Toby and they made sure the toe in the front and rear was correct.

    The car is now loaded up on a trailer and heading to our new home in Ellensburg. I didn't feel comfortable driving up through Snoqualmie Pass, and was able to get it transported for $275, so I thought that was pretty reasonable.

    Once in it's new home, 5510 is going to be sitting for a few months. I have some other projects I need to take care of (moving into the new house, cleaning out and selling the current house, renovating the foyer, launching an updated website for my business) and the weather is going to be pretty snowy anyway. Once I'm ready to get back to work, I've got a bit of a list going, but I really need to determine which path I'm going to go down... One option is that I can rebuild the original auto transmission and put it back in the car, which will let me really drive around without worrying and hopefully resolve the issues with having low power, and will probably increase how much I'll get when I go to sell the engine and both transmissions. The other option is to sell them just as they are, leaks and all, and jump straight into the EV conversion. I guess I have a few months to think about it!!

    Purchases:
    • Stainless bumper studs, stainless air-deflector retaining strips, throttle stop, LEDs for doors and side markers - $146 - DGO

  3. #53
    Senior Member
    Join Date:  May 2019

    Location:  Ellensburg, WA

    Posts:    118

    My VIN:    5510

    The DeLorean made its way to Ellensburg just fine, though it's dirty again and needs another wash!!

    https://youtu.be/CyQv-nypDYc

    Also, I realized that I didn't mention the cost of some services that I paid for:

    • Stew's Garage - 2 hours - $94
    • Omni Brake & Alignment - $193

  4. #54
    Senior Member
    Join Date:  May 2019

    Location:  Ellensburg, WA

    Posts:    118

    My VIN:    5510

    It's been a few months with the DeLorean sitting in the shop, just waiting for winter to end. Last week I was finally able to take it out on a beautiful day, drive it through Ellensburg around the WSU campus and back home. She held up like a champ! Starting her up after so long did take some coaxing and a new battery, however. I'm going to let it sit for a week without the charger on it to make sure it holds up and to give myself the confidence to take the DeLorean on errands.

    In lieu of working on the DeLorean much, building out the shop has been top priority for my time now that the old house has been sold. I built some stairs up into the loft area, which basically doubles the amount of storage available, and put together some shelving units and started filling them up. As I'm nearing the time when I'll be able to start working on things again, I went and ordered some parts to fix up some leaks on the transmission and rear main seal, and hopefully get both transmissions in tip-top shape. Helping that happen is... *drumroll*... my new 2-post Bendpak lift!! Got it ordered a few days ago and it will get delivered sometime in May or June. Quite the long wait, but I know it'll be worth it. After having the pleasure to try out Stews Garage and put the car up on a lift and so easily work on everything, I know that having the lift will turn a lot of 8-hour days into 2-hour days. I'll never have to stack up 80 concrete blocks to take the body off the frame or put it back on, and when the EV conversion starts it will really help to be able to drop the battery pack from the donor and lift the motor out, etc. I have a feeling that once I have the lift I'll find a way to use it weekly.

    That's about it for the update for me until I can wrap up some things around the house and get to working on the transmissions.

    Purchases:
    • Battery - $184 - O'Reilly's
    • Auto shift cable - $86 - DGO
    • Parking brake cables (both sides) - $134 - DGO
    • Lower speedo cable - $49 - DGO
    • Replacement rear main seal and some transmission seals - $75 - DGO

  5. #55
    Senior Member
    Join Date:  May 2019

    Location:  Ellensburg, WA

    Posts:    118

    My VIN:    5510

    Last weekend I got the lift completely installed and mostly dialed in. It's amazing how quickly and easily it lifts compared to how I've been doing it the whole last year.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ur_L...el=BillCarlson

    Running power for the lift took a bit longer than expected due to needing to make a couple of trips to the store and make an Amazon order for missing bits, but was surprisingly easy. I've never used a conduit bender before and I was nervous to make some more complex bends (like a single piece of pipe that needed a 90 and then a weird offset bend at a 45-degree angle to get into the panel) - but other than it taking a while to figure out, I didn't ruin a single piece. The total run was about 70 feet. Up the wall from the panel, then around the shop and up into the loft, where I put two boxes for future equipment (air compressor and dust collector), then down and around to the middle of the shop where it terminates to a 240V-30A locking outlet.

    This week has been a busy one at work, as it is "Connect" (review) and Rewards (bonus/stock) season at Microsoft. Very rarely do I work more than 40 hours, but this one was an easy 60. But I still found time to tackle the first item on the list - figuring out why the car doesn't start! I had a hunch, which is that some wire in the starter circuity has some corrosion, and that does seem to be the cause. Turning the key to Ignition resulted in some relay clicking and the accessory lights going out, but not a peep from the starter. Once it was up on the lift I pulled the rubber boot off of the starter wires and jumped the solenoid and main starter wire, and it fired right up. Somehow that must have cleaned up some corrosion, because now the car happily fires up as usual!! There's about 20 different places where corrosion could be causing an issue (the main +12V and Ground wires, plus the wire from the starter relay back to the starter solenoid) I've got about $300 worth of wires and lugs and distribution blocks and heat shrink and a crimper in the Amazon cart ready for me to pull the trigger on, which is enough to rewire the main +12V and ground wires from the battery outward.

    In the mean time I need to replace the parking brake cables and lower speedo cable, which are both pretty simple.

    So much to do, so little time!

  6. #56
    Senior Member
    Join Date:  May 2019

    Location:  Ellensburg, WA

    Posts:    118

    My VIN:    5510

    Parking brake cables and lower speedo cable are replaced!!

    The lower speedometer cable was a simple job... that I made more complicated than it needed to be. For some reason I thought I needed to take off the entire angle drive to replace it, so I spent probably 20 minutes getting that nut off, only to instantly realize "Oh. I don't need to do that." and then I put it back on and torqued it down (one "Bill" hanging from a wrench is probably 200ft-lbs of torque?). Replacing it the right way was a 10 minute job.

    The parking brake cables are a completely different story! I thought it would be easy, but it took me all damn day. First, the only way to get the cables in and out of the parking brake lever is by removing the seat, and then moving the carpet, and then opening up the little cubby behind the driver's seat and removing the carpet from there. Then since one of the cables was completely seized, I ended up having to cut it with an angle grinder anyway. Then I found that the parking brake level bracket was all bent to hell, so I spent 20 minutes with a hammer and punch knocking it back into the shape it should be. Then I found that the lever's little auto-balancing thing was bent to hell, so that got bent back on the anvil and re-drilled out. Then those damn ends of the cable with the springs - UGH. Trying to get those things in the cable bracket on the caliper is just a huge pain.

    I'm glad the work is now done - and I routed the passenger side cable OVER the transmission, as was suggested on the forum. That will save me some time when I pull the transmission.

    On the short list of DeLorean projects is to make a jumper cable for the RPM relay, then see if I can figure out why the gas gauge isn't working (I'm using the DMCH replacement system, which seems to only be powered on when the car is running).

  7. #57
    Senior Member
    Join Date:  May 2019

    Location:  Ellensburg, WA

    Posts:    118

    My VIN:    5510

    The other day I was working on figuring out what was wrong with my DeLorean. Low power, gets 'jumpy', and after searching the forums I was like - Oh, it might be the frequency valve. Since I was already investigating the RPM relay so that I could jump the fuel pump and figure out why the gas gauge wasn't right, I decided to investigate. I just jumped the RPM relay today and it doesn't buzz.

    I took off the intake filter housing and jumped the RPM relay (the pin that controls the frequency valve and the WUR, not the one that controls the pump - Glad I found that tidbit of information!!) - no buzzing. I fiddled with the wires with everything all connected and didn't get anything, so I disconnected the plug, cleaned it with contact cleaner and a wire brush and a tiny file. Plugged back in - nothing. Fiddled with the wires some more, and then BZZZZZZ.

    After some more poking and prodding, I found that it wasn't the connector on the FV, it was the ground wire right next to it! I removed the bolt, cleaned it and the washer and the ring terminal. I pulled the quick connect apart and it was completely brown and corroded. Spent a few minutes brushing, filing, and cleaning, and it would hold sort of, but still would disconnect and stop buzzing when wiggled... Then the wire fell out. D: Cut the wire and used a butt splice connector, tested, works great. Solid buzzing even when wiggling the connectors.

    Went for a drive through town - absolutely massive difference!! The car had significantly better acceleration and it no longer stops climbing at 2k RPM. Driving up a small hill didn't chug it down. I got gas and a cute college girl said "I really love your car!" My wife was not amused. Then we ran the first errand we've ever run in the DeLorean, which was to stop at the Post Office and drop off a package. I also confirmed that the speedometer is now working, and the brakes (especially the parking brakes) don't squeal as much. I'm still getting some noise when I go around a corner.

    The car is driving better than it ever has!!

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