Sunday, November 19, 2017

P45t adapter with LED headlight

 Took advantage of an opening in time to test out the P45t adapters in the 3 bolt headlight housing.

The adapters are well made and fit nicely in the housing.
 The LED bulb adapter fits snugly in the adapter.  This picture is a bit premature because I hadn't yet pushed the LED adapter into the P45t adapter.
Here's where things hit a slight snag:  The cap cannot be secured over the two adapters because they're thicker than the bulb that normally occupies this space.  I am going to get a couple of small files and see if I can reprofile the cap to allow the tangs to engage and lock to the housing.

To make sure I didn't make unnecessary modifications - I taped the LED bulb to the back of the housing and fit it to the headlight bucket - it fits without any drama.  I've already reached out to see if I can find another set of the headlight cap - if they're used I'll have no reservations about busting out a file on them.  The three pieces I have are NOS and I'd prefer to not modify them.

I'll call this a minor win so far...

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Building the crate for the roof rack

Today, the little dude and I prepared the roof rack for shipping after I went to Home Depot for supplies.

We covered all of the rails with water pipe insulation and taped it in place.
The finished result of keeping the 4 year old entertained for about 30 minutes.  He does good work when he's 'into it'.
 After a false start and standing around, staring at the rack and what I'd started to build, I came up with what would ultimately be the final form.  In fits and starts - when I had free time - I kept plugging away at building it.
 I've got two panels to place and some strapping to install and it's done.  Then it's a reweigh and updated dimensions before I get the shipping quote.  I'm hoping to get this thing off to the trucking company on Monday or Tuesday.
 The 40 IDF Webers arrived late today because it was one of those 'deliver the mail at 6pm' days.  There's a gasket missing so I am going to have to order those before I can get too far.

I've got plenty going on so I don't think this will slow me down any.
The once clean workbench is quite busy with lots of little things to get done.  It's a holiday week for the little dude so car projects may not get done quite so fast.

I traded the early Nutria ashtray that I had for a rebuilt late fuel pump today.

The parts book material sold so it also got packed up for shipping on Monday. 

I think this is my list of things to do so far:
* Test fit P45t adapters with LED bulbs in 3 bolt headlight housings
* Install Weber carbs
* Finish building driver's side door
* Build passenger's side door (if the driver's side goes well) - mitigate rust, top coat with paint, etc.
* Hook up the safety relay for the fuel pump (if everything else is good to go)
* Change the oil
* Put the rubber floor mats back in the car
* Finish printing supplements for Parts book

One day at a time...

Friday, November 17, 2017

Release and rebuild

 Oooh!  Look!  A door lock...yeah.  But stay with me here, the difference in effort to lock/unlock the doors (from both inside and outside) is remarkable!  Very little to no effort from inside and turning the key in the lock is now as smooth as my last car that had key locks.  I forgot that these locks could be so smooth!  I actually smiled when I opened the door and locked/unlocked the door.  There I was, standing in the garage, smiling like an idiot while I open and close the partially assembled door on my 50+ year old car.  So this is 'mid-life' happiness, I guess.

Early in the afternoon, the window trims arrived, along with the felt strip clips.  They're three days early (due on Monday) so I figured I'd get started on the driver's side door.  The window trims are not great but they're far better than what I removed in terms of rubber and dents.  The construction is mediocre but it'll work for now.

The plan is to completely build up the driver's side door before starting on the passenger's side door (which I promptly ignored by installing the door lock mechanism).  The passenger's side door is going to take more work to get it right due to the rust so I figured I'd toss myself a bone by doing the easy door first.

I test fit the felt strip in the wind wing channel - that's going to suck a little bit because the felt strip is wider than the channel and it compresses down to a slot that's too thin for the glass.
This door lock was lightly coated in hard crusty grease and I spent WAY too long cleaning it today.  All told, I think I spent two or three hours cleaning four door locks - trying to figure out which set to install.

These two are soaking in Fluid Film - I'll clean them out one more time before putting them away.  The benefit of storing them with Fluid Film is that it doesn't turn into crusty using them later won't be a chore.
The small Malpassi Filter King arrived today from the UK.  It's a fuel filter and pressure regulator all in one package.  Now all I need to get around to doing is figure out where to mount it.
These two little plastic rings are P45t to H4 adapters - they landed today and will, hopefully, be tested tomorrow.  I really, really hope the LED bulbs fit the 3 bolt headlight housing in the headlight bucket.  I think it's going to be a tight fit.

I'm also going to test the little film that's supposed to reduce the 'blue' effect of the LED bulb to a more 'natural' color suitable to a classic car while providing brighter light.
This is the stack of goods that remain after I completed the parts book that I'm keeping.  It's one complete book plus nearly two more complete books in pieces.  Not all of the pages are in great shape but it's a lot of material.  I have a prospective buyer and if he pays, it'll be on to another home.

I've had about all of the scanning and printing I can handle.  The reason I put this off for three years became abundantly clear about half way into the process.  I'm looking forward to the end of this project.

The glass tubes for the LED bulbs arrived today as well (it was a good day for packages!) so that chapter is closed as well.

Speaking of 'new homes', I sold the roof rack I'll be building another crate to ship it to California next week.

The replacement carburetors arrive tomorrow afternoon - I have a lot of work on the board now and I'm hoping to be able to drive the car again in a few days.

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Parts book progress

The 'final' version of my original parts book has been created.  It's the contents of most of two books with a few pages from a third book.

I took the plunge yesterday and signed up for a month to month subscription to Adobe DC so I could clean up and edit the .pdf version of the parts book that I've been scanning over the last few weeks.

The whole book was scanned, cleaned up, made searchable and organized.  There are a few pages of the book that are still not as clean as I'd like but it's pretty close without Photoshop (which I don't have).
I tested out the organization and page cleanliness by printing out the first seven sections and putting them in page protectors for use in the garage while I'm working on the car.  I ran out of paper so I have to stop for the day.  I will get another ream of paper and print the last two sections and hope they fit in the other binder.  I'm printing each section in 20 page groups so I can check a third time to make sure it's all in order and nothing got screwed up.  So far, I've only caught one issue which I consider to be a pretty good result.
I found NOS locks for the car - they're en-route - but I will install the super nice used locks that I have on hand.  I am pretty sure the passenger's side lock that I removed is going to take a bit of work to get it functioning smoothly.

The new outer window trims should arrive by the end of the week.  Once I get those installed, the rest of the driver's side door should go back together pretty quickly.  My plan is to use the new window channels and keep the removed parts for future powder coating.  Recycling old/used for better/used or refurbished parts.

At this point, I'm waiting for my back to heal a bit and parts to arrive so that I can get the doors back together, lights finished and the engine back to where it should be once the carburetors are installed.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Finding all of the loose ends so I can tie them all together

The fender packing is complete - I tested the solidity of the packing by flipping it on its side, no noises other than the sound of it hitting the ground.

The crate will be here until shipping is worked out - it's actually now being used as a table where I store parts for the door rebuild.

After a short period of non-communication, the seller of the LED kit has indicated that they've shipped the missing piece.  That part should arrive on Thursday and I can get into the installation.  The P45t - H4 adapters should arrive within a week.  I might be able to get closure to this small project soon.

I sold the NOS rear seat cover to a guy with a super stock car - sad to see NOS parts leave but the ones that won't be installed on my car are just very slowly wasting away so they might as well be sold to those who will use them to improve their cars, right?

The Weber clones were shipped back and delivered yesterday - the engine builder communicated that the real Webers will be shipped out tomorrow and I should have them by the end of the week.

The door building process will be pretty good for the driver's side once the new trims arrive.  I found NOS door locks for the restoration so I'll use my good used parts to replace the super janky passenger's side door lock to get the car back on the road.  I'm going to work out a solution for the rust situation on the passenger's side so I can get the door back together.  I may try to use the new insulation I bought a while back but I have to get past the rust bit first.

I haven't yet figured out a solution to the wind wing broken welds...which will slip into requiring new wing seals...and if I'm going to do one, I might as well do the other one too.  Well, shit.  At least I have the parts.

Not much will happen over the next couple of days - I'm on a medically required break for two days.

Monday, November 13, 2017

Passenger's side door deconstruction

In between various other tasks for the day, I managed to get the passenger's side door apart.  I knew that this door wasn't going to be quite as nice as the driver's side because of a few visual clues.

The gap between the fender and the door when the door is opening is a clue that something ain't quite right with this door.
 The gap between the two panels virtually disappears when the door is opened but they don't touch...likely some form of 'magic' that'll also affect the fender when I get around to removing it.
The plastic sheeting job was half-assed (no pics) and I could see rust but I didn't know how bad it would be until I pulled the armrest off.  The sound deadening piece pretty much fell off with very little effort.  All of the bolts were rusty on the backside and the bottom 4" of the door are flaky rusty.
The follow up sign (other than the shitty plastic job) that this door has been opened up in the past:  The original clip boots are rolling around in the bottom of the door.

The rust is a bummer for sure...the odds of finding another 64 door in good shape without rust are slim.  If I were to look for a door, I'd also try to find one with a mirror hole (this one doesn't have one).  The other option is to keep the doors from the 65 and have them worked to fix the dents...guess I'll have to dig in and figure out just how bad the rust is on this door.
 Seems like everything inside of this door kind of sucks in some way.  This lock is so dry and stiff that I cannot believe this one worked better than the driver's side.  Smashing sawdust and a fistful of unsalted crackers would have improved the lubricity of this lock.

Manually manipulating it is like nails on a chalkboard - scratchy, shrill and made the hair on the back of my neck stand up.  I'm going to try to clean it and lubricate it - if that fails I'll pull out one of my spares.
The wind wing welds were broken - partially explaining why the damn thing was so easy to open and hard to close.

It looks like I'll be able to rebuild the driver's side door and maybe be able to fix the passenger's side door (for now) but a long term solution revolves around a replacement passenger's side door (or using the doors from the 65).

Sunday, November 12, 2017

NOS rear fender crate and headlights

The rainy cold weather spawned the decision to build a crate for the NOS rear fenders that are ultimately headed to California someday.  My son wanted to get his hands dirty and learn how to use some tools so we got on it.

This is the initial frame with the fenders to make sure it's the correct size.
 This is the finished product - I'm going to Home Depot tomorrow to get the plywood for the outer material.  I'm planning on using double wall cardboard to cushion the fenders inside of the crate to keep them from moving around too much in transit...which still has to be worked out.

The fenders are going to ultimately wind up on Ferris - he'll have three of the four fenders be NOS parts unless the 4th fender is found soon.
 Still waiting on the headlight people to send me the missing piece (glass tube) and I'm also waiting on the P45t to H4 adapters due inbound from the UK so I can test them on the 3 bolt headlamps and possibly eliminate the use of adapters, H4 bulb housings and single bolt headlight rings.

This is the LED light side - gives the car sort of a 'dead' look to it
The right side still has the P45t bulb in it - it looks more 'alive' and has a better reflection in the housing.  It's also a bit more water tight - meaning less corrosion in the headlight bucket but also possibly less air movement for the LED electronics.  This housing is deeper so I'm not sure it's going to work but I figured it was worth trying just so I know if it's possible.

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Driver's side door deconstruction

Today my helper and I took on the task of disassembling the driver's side door to replace the window felt, clean the lock mechanism and the window regulator.

If all of the jobs on the car took 15 minutes with a 2 hour break in between he would be solidly involved.
Got the door completely disassembled.  I have new inner scrapers from a bus coming on Monday.  I have to get a rivet gun so I can attach them to the original trim pieces.  I'm not going to worry about fixing or straightening them for now.  This is a practice run for later.
Inner door lever cleaned up nicely - almost as nice as my NOS pieces.
Used half a can of brake cleaner to blow out all of the crusty grease from the door lock - it was fairly stiff and hard to operate.  It's very clean and ready for new grease.
The other half of the can was used on the window regulator.  I was pleasantly surprised at how clean this regulator came out - and that the alloy cam wasn't broken.  I expected it to be snapped because of how hard it was to roll the window up and down.  It's slightly tweaked but not broken.
The support arm on the window regulator popped off.  I should be able to get this welded back on pretty easily.  Depending on when I do the re-assembly, I might use a  different window regulator for the purpose of timing.
Inside of the door was scrubbed clean - no real rust issues.  I pulled out the shop vac and blew out the front portion of the door to release any crap trapped up there.  Some dust came out along with two of the clip boots but that was it.

Thursday, November 9, 2017

The 'two step' of progress

I took a short video of engine start up to document how the engine starts with the Weber clones.

I had turned it over once before this video started so I missed the full effect of how hard it is to get it started.
 I removed the air filters and discovered that these carburetors have been opened previously - I was under the impression that they were new carburetors.

In any event - I called the engine builder and we had a chat about how to diagnose the issues based on what we know and it was determined that the best method was to send them back to him for diagnosis.  During the discussion, I requested an exchange with real Webers and he in a couple of weeks, I should be installing brand new 40 IDFs.
This is how things will sit for a while until the carburetors arrive.

I turned the carburetors upside down after I'd removed the fuel, dried them out and put them back together and it sounds like the float on one wasn't moving...just a guess though.  Something wasn't right.

While they're gone I will focus on tidying up a few other loose ends.

Speaking of doors, I pulled the panels off of the driver's side and lubed the lock mechanism so I can use the key to lock/unlock the door with the key instead of climbing across the inside of the car.

The end result of this task is that I can roll the window up and down easily and I can lock/unlock the door using the key.  I really need to rebuild the scrapers and replace the check rod buffer...I'm on the fence about going down that rabbit hole but I probably will because I have two weeks to improve something and smoothly operating doors/windows is a pretty nice thing.
Swapped out the KMH speedo for the MPH speedo.  The gauge cluster is looking pretty good.

I've got to get the horn bit worked out so I can get the button reinstalled and it doesn't look like a half-assed project.

 While working on the doors of Nigel, I noticed that the doors had multiple drain holes in the bottom of the door.  I don't recall noticing this in any other doors although I think it's a much better design than the single drain version that replaced this one.  That one drain hole gets clogged very easily and the doors fill up with water and rust.  This earlier version has four or five drain holes.  The sound deadening is also an asphalt sprayed fiber.
This is the inside of the door from Icarus - no holes in the bottom - different stamping and it has the more common sound deadening with random holes.

After I noticed this - I spent way too much time looking at both doors and then trying to decide what I'll wind up doing when I restore the car - sound deadening panels (like Dynamat) or spray them with color coordinated bedliner?  No one will see it but it would be nice if whatever is in there helps keep things quiet.
These two little clips (311 831 719) are present on the doors from the 65 S (Icarus) but they are not present on the doors on Nigel.  The parts book doesn't specifically call out when they're started in production only that they're tied to the newer door seal style (711 F /712 F).  Both cars have the same 3 bolt door hinges - which are supposed to be fairly rare.  Leaves me wondering if it's a coincidence or if the hinges really aren't that rare.  I've never seen them for sale unless they're attached to a door.

I posted these doors up for sale on a Facebook group tonight - they're probably priced higher than most are willing to pay.  They're not a perfect match for Nigel but if they don't sell, I've also no problem with hanging on to one will know they're not the correct doors (if I use them) unless they're a real Type 3 nerd...and let's face it - there aren't many of them left anymore.

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Fuel pressure and...

 I installed the fuel pressure gauge this morning and before I installed the regulator - I fired up the car.  Three key turns before it would start but it did start - and once it settled enough, I went back and took the first picture - this one - that shows that without the regulator installed, the fuel pressure is 3psi.  I was expecting this to show something closer to 5psi which would give me confidence that the regulator install would help control the problem I'm experiencing.
 After the engine warmed up, the pressure drops to about 2.5psi, which seems a little low given that the information I've found about Webers (and presumably, their clones) prefer about 3psi.

Runs fine, idles not great...a little high and inconsistent.
After a few minutes of run time, I shut it down and took this picture.  1psi of pressure.  Not really sure if there's supposed to be any residual pressure in the lines because I've never measured fuel pressure in an old VW before today.

This is, of course, assuming that the gauge is correct.  How can I possibly tell?  Buy another one!  Nope, not going to do that...I've spent 3x what I expected when I converted to an electric pump.
I called the engine builder to discuss the issue - he's suspecting that either a float is stuck or a needle/seat is defective.  I don't have enough time to tackle this today but I will get on it tomorrow.

In other news - I came across another potential solution to the adapters for the headlights.  P45t to H4 adapters.  It'll allow me to use the LED headlights on the 3 bolt lens housings - which would eliminate the need to cobble together some new adapters for the headlight buckets.  My brain ain't as fast as it used to be - I could have thought of this two weeks ago and saved myself a sweaty fist full of cash.

I think I'm going to sell my roof rack - it's only been on the car a couple of times and tends to get used to store shit I'm too lazy to store somewhere else.  I'm also thinking about selling off the spare doors from the 65 since the doors on Nigel are in pretty good shape (aside from the dents).  I have to go through and figure out what else can be sold off.

Tomorrow is another day and I'm hoping it's productive.

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Here we go again...

I got through sorting the 'non-parts' sections of the parts books - scanned everything except sections 8, 9 and the supplements.  I'm looking to get two or three of those done tomorrow before I have to stop and move on to other things.

I changed the oil in the car, bought some cheap oil to run through the engine while I adjust the pressure regulator.  The Holley regulator arrived today with the gauge but the gauge was defective so I went to the local parts store and picked one up with the oil.  I also bought a ton of brass fittings to get it all hooked hindsight, I should have just put a mechanical fuel pump on it and called it done...but I like to do shit the hard way.  The oil will get changed once the pressure is correct to the VR-1 20/50 for the rest of the break in period.

The MPH speedometer arrived today as well - I'm just going to clean it up a bit and install it so I can track the number of miles during break in.

At the end of the day - I've got the oil changed and just have to install the regulator and gauge - then fire up the car...and hope that it actually runs better.  Tomorrow could be a good day.

Monday, November 6, 2017

Progress report

Progress for today included scanning sections 2-7 of the parts book, correcting the spade connectors for the safety relay that I'm not currently using and ordering a 'back up' fuel pressure regulator/filter - Malpassi Filter King.  The more widely available version is 85mm and has large diameter inlet/outlets with the provision for a gauge - it's overkill for this engine.  My long game is to use the gauge that's coming tomorrow to set the fuel pressure and then remove it from the system.  The fewer potential leak points the better as far as I'm concerned.  I'll use it again when this arrives next week.

The Filter King that I bought (and shown in the  photo) is the smaller, 67mm version, perfect for a car with low pressure requirements that requires either 6mm or 8mm inlets and outputs - great for the time when/if I change the fuel delivery to the larger diameter hose.  The glass is nice and thick and I'll eventually mount it where it shouldn't get rocks kicked up into it.  I like the idea of thicker glass, a bigger filter and a more robust construction as well as not having to add another potential leak point.

I found the correct size of bracket from which to cut down to make the new headlight bucket brackets.  The upper bracket is going to change a bit - from one piece to two - but four mounting points should be super sturdy for the headlights.  I imagine I'll have to make a few of them before I get them right.  I tweaked the existing brackets to get the left side headlight mounted but it's a touch too low in the trim ring.  It'll do for now.  It's temporary...just to get functional headlights that I can aim properly.  Good thing those LED electronics are IP67 rated.

Evening edit:  I bought one of the repop dashes out of South Africa because the guy doing them said it's likely to be his last run.  It arrived today and I just got it open.  From 5' away, it looks pretty good.

Here's the left side
 Here's the right side
 First thing I noticed was the space between the gauge pods - both had some sort of 'issue' that was corrected during manufacturing of the mold - it's very noticeable - almost distracting.
 The trimming around the outer upper perimeter is jagged and could be corrected.  I think I was expecting something slightly more 'finished' around the edges.
Upper right side of the dash - not bad.
Middle right of the speaker grill (which looks pretty good).
Middle of the speaker grill - a little uneven/jagged but not bad overall.  A bit of trimming and it'd be decent.

Overall, I have mixed feelings about this thing...for the price, it's not bad...but the defects between the gauge pods bothers me more than it probably should.  Who knows - maybe someday when my current dash cracks, I'll think this one is pretty awesome and put it in my car.