Approaching half-way to GTDay and if problems arise at every stage of the build as they did again today I am now wondering if I shall be ready in time.
For example, a simple job of fixing the baffles inside the valve covers (not that I realised this job was needed anyway). The baffle is a 1/2 mm plate with two knock-in pins, the instructions show tapping them in with a wooden block underneath to avoid marking the polished face.
So I knock them, they are very tight and don't want to go fully home - the plate still rattles around. I decide to look at the other cover, I measure the depth of the hole and length of the 'pin', surprise surprise, even allowing for the thin plate the bolt is 2 mm longer than the hole! On the other cover I very carefully drill the hole deeper (there's not much meat before you break through) and a bit wider (as it seems an unnecessarily small hole). On this one the pins go in comfortably and the plate is held firm - but it just shouldn't be necessary to make these adjustments - the QA at Edelbrock is rubbish (however these covers are made in TAIWAN as cast into the underneath). The problem is now I have to remove two very hard pins and I know from trying to do this on one of my old covers, you can't drill them out. I called Roadcraft who agreed this type of thing happens all the time with engine bits. Brian suggests using a tapered fork to wedge underneath, I have some but they're large ones for splitting ball joints - so I'm sleeping on this problem.
I had to cut down the primary shaft connecting the clutch driven plate with the gearbox. This was because I had a bastard size one originally and I wanted a standard spigot bearing. The new one is supplied longer than required for cutting down as required. I couldn't make an impression with a hacksaw so I invested in a tool I have wanted for years, an angle grinder. This made short work of the job, and I still have all my fingers (at least today, dangerous tools these). Here you can see the two shafts, old one on top:
You can see the wear from the old spigot bearing on the nose. I thought I'd better test them in the gearbox. The new one went in fine and went home into the sleeve, but the old one wouldn't go fully home. I was briefly worried because the splines
at the gearbox end are shorter on the old shaft (even though the shafts are the same overall length). I thought the shorter splines might have meant the old shaft didn't go fully home in the joining sleeve and therefore stuck out further from the gearbox (i.e. that there was a gap hidden within the sleeve). This would mean that although I had made them the same length the new one might be too short!!
However, if you look at the top photo again you can see a shiny area on the right end of clutch plate splines. This corresponds with the rubbing on the tube which the shaft runs in, the same position that the new shaft sits which means it must be OK (sorry I am not explaining this well!). It must be just because the old shaft is tighter.
Seems a good time to put this in the end of the crank. I cleaned the slightly rusty hole in the end.
I thought I would fit a removal washer in the end first. This is a washer with a swaged captive nut, it is held in place with some high temperature silicone. There is a 9.5mm gap to the bearing. When I want to remove the bearing I can put a bolt in and pull it out (theoretically at least, because the bearing is quite tight and I expect it might just destroy the washer with the stresses involved).
I then fitted the bearing using a large socket to spread the load, I used a small amount of copper ease to help it out again in the future. I tried fitting the primary shaft but the fit is so good it won't go in because of the air pocket pressure. This will mean the gearbox won't go on - my plan is to drill a small hole up the centre of the shaft and a cross drill it ahead of the splines - this will allow air out. The option is to take a few thou off the shaft diameter, I might do this anyway as if there is no play in the joint I will never mate the gearbox to the engine!