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Lannette: The rust and not ready build

Hi everybody!
(Insert Dr Nick wave)

Thought it was about time I started documenting my ownership and ongoing upkeep on my recently purchased K11, otherwise known as Lannette (play on using the letters in the licence plate).
Get comfy, grab a cuppa and a snack and hopefully you enjoy the journey.

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[Taken when I got it home]

Randomly scrolling through the online equivalent of the 'middle of lidl' otherwise known as Facebook marketplace, on a lazy Saturday afternoon and stumbled across an advert in my local area with the price attached to it of £350.

After a quick discussion with my partner about driveway space and the logistics of potentially having x3 cars and a motorcycle for one household if purchased, I was quickly advised that I would need to get rid of the currently owned ford fiesta, in order to take on a new car / ongoing project.

With the notes app swiftly opened on my phone and me beginning to write an advert for the ford fiesta to be sold and on it's merry way, a message was sent to the owner of the little red micra, advising I would be very interested in coming to view and test drive.

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[Taken when I got it home]

Now, the ad was as basic as you can get and stated:

> 1999 Equation
> Red
> 1.0L
> 150K Miles
> Runs and drives

If i'm honest, that was enough for me. I have wanted one of these cars for quite some time now ever since I stumbled across the forced induction side of the forums back in 2017 while on a student night out in Plymouth. This is also of course before the model became a little more popular due to certain youtube / tiktok videos making the price for them slowly increase! Quick GOV MOT history check looked good and for the past few years had only shown all cosmetic stuff (happy days).

Sunday 10/10/2021

Went to view and test drive the car. Upon arrival the car needed to be moved out of a garage and the owner advised a check engine light had "appeared while moving the car the day before" and that a mate was on his way with a code reader to see if the fault could be traced. Hmmm, clearly the lack of info and price on the advert was now starting to make sense.

Paintwork is rough in places. I cannot stand the door trims not running in line with each other, but that can be fixed at a later date.

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[Taken when I got it home]

The sellers mate showed up and was unable to plug his code reader into the ODB port as apparently the car needs one with a special adapter. Was advised by the kiddy, the reason for sale was due to him buying it for his younger brother off of the local council. The brother took one look at the car and said "not a chance i'm driving that" and thus after having it sitting in the garage, (a while by the sounds of it!) it was listed for sale. Undeterred by a check engine light and a clear fault I would need to trace and fix with little description of what it could be, I test drove the car and after seeing it in person really didn't want to walk away due to the price it had been advertised.

Personally I didn't notice anything wrong with the car on the test drive, so parked up and was ready to swap some cash for the V5. Seller then advised he had left the V5 at another address! So had to awkwardly leave me with his mate with the code reader, fetch it and come back...(Lovely kid, but either first time selling or spends a lot of time in the prone position - Bless him!)

Finally upon his return, cash, details and keys swapped, quick MTA on my insurance from the fiesta to the micra and I drove off +1 car up and with a slightly annoyed partner as the fiesta was still in my ownership.

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[Taken when I got it home]

This is where the fun begins!

While driving back, I noticed the temp gauge was a little above the normal 90 degrees / mid way point...and climbing.

Clearly I was not paying attention to this on the test drive! Also, not a good position to be in as I have a fair way to get this car back home. Just over 5 miles from where I purchased the car with the needle very close to tipping into the red section of the temp gauge, managed to pull into a local Esso to check the coolant and pick up some if required.

Checked the expansion tank, as expected - empty.

Picked up a bottle of 'Prestone' all make and model coolant (the only one they had) [£6.30/£356.30] and a drink for myself and brimmed the expansion tank after letting her and myself cool down. Set off once again, this time watching the temp gauge like a hawk. Same thing happened again, got to temp and started creeping past. Once again, pulled over to let car cool down, this time within reach of my parents house on the inevitable 3rd run. Managed to get it back without having to stop for a 4th time and decided it might be a good idea to chuck the rest of the coolant in the radiator instead.

Let the car cool down, opened the rad top (no mayo) and filled it with the remainder of the coolant. Looked under the car, no leaks. Odd, where is it going then if expansion is now full? Started the car up, coolant then decided to p### all over the floor from a leak that looks like it is coming from the bottom of the sump!?

Well, that's where its going then. Anyway, I had things to do, people to see, so I left the keys at the rents house and planned to pick it up another day to assess properly.

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[Taken when I got it home]

Sunday 17/10/2021

Picked up a tow pole from euros [£19.49/£375.79] in anticipation this would be the easiest and best way to get the car back to its permanent location. Roped in a mate to help me flat tow the car from my rents house to mine, just over 15 miles away!
07:00 on a Sunday morning, with not much traffic about to cause a major disturbance on the road, managed to get it back. 5-0 even drove past on the other side without a care in the world (Win!)

Right. Now to collect thoughts, do some research and find the best way of tackling the leak moving forward.

Saturday 30/10/2021

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Jacked the car up to get a better look. Front wheels off and driver side arch plastics off, decided to pour about 1 litre of water into the rad this time (rather than to purchase and waste even more coolant) and start the car to see where the leak was actually coming from. Got underneath and looks like it's coming from the water pump area as it's dripping down and coming from the corner of the sump directly underneath.

Okay, we have a starting point! Picked up a used Haynes manual online [£9.49/£385.28] put in a order to euros for belts and water pump [£40.28/£425.56] now
I just need to find some time to work on the damn thing.

Thursday 04/11/2021

The boss has decided there is not enough work to go around and that I have too much holiday to take before the end of the year. Due to that I have been
'advised' to take some time off, so booked the next 10 working days off. Not back until 18/11/2021 (Result!)

Haynes manual and euros delivery in hand, got out on the driveway to work on removing the belts and access the water pump. Not gonna lie, this took much longer than I ever thought it would and became a right PITA, due to the fact that no matter what bolt I decided to touch on the car, it would give me issues. I spent more time trying to strip the front end, removing one bolt successfully for another to snap due to being rusty and past its prime, mainly just trying to gain more access to the engine bay, than actually doing anything productive from the cooling side of things!

Then, of all the things that could happen - this did:

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Yes, that is the tension bolt for the alternator you can see bent upwards (taken after removal - have misplaced bolt head to take photo).

Removed the bottom bolts holding the alternator in place fine but unable to remove the top bolt as unable to get the right amount of tension on it to loosen it. Wasted too much time not really achieving anything other than a headache, so decided to call it a day with a semi/half stripped front end.
 
Monday 08/11/2021

Much more productive day! Found a golden nugget of info on here over the weekend, advising to remove the engine mount and jack engine from underneath for more access - Did just that! Was finally able to get the much needed torque on the top alternator bolt, which also decided to go snap! (Shock!)

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Ah well, at least I can remove the alternator fully from the car along with the old belt. Water pump pulley and tensioner were a breeze in comparison to the alternator and came undone with no issues. The 3 bolts on the water pump hub were the only tricky ones as you have to tighten one, while loosening the other, took a while to get the right torque on each in order to remove - good old two spanner technique!

Old water pump belt off - Looks in okay nick to me

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Old pump:

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Used a razor blade to get rid of the bulk of old RTV and a microfiber with some WD-40 to clean the remainder and mating surface. New water pump in.

Used the paper gasket the water pump came with rather than RTV - (Note to self: If it leaks i'll remove and replace with RTV instead)

New belt on and 80% tightened from underneath.

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Rang local scrappy - K11 in yard with alternator still attached (didn't expect that!). Happy to let me come down and pull what was needed. Only needed the two bolts and the block they sit in. 5 min job with the 12 & 14 socket heads. Old geezer wanted £5. Only had £10 on me so let him have the extra profit for getting me out of a bind and being able to obtain the same day! [£10/£435.56]

Went back, fitted the alternator with new bolts and belt. Tightened both 100%. Noice!

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Old alternator belt for comparison - Looks worse than the old water belt for sure!

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Darkness approached rapidly, so decided to put inner wheel plastics back with cable ties, wheels back on and lower car off jack stands.
Called it a productive day and decided to pick it up later in the week due to the weather forecast.

Thursday 11/11/2021

Once again, I decided to fill the radiator with water instead of coolant, in case the leak was not from the water pump or in case of any gasket issues. 1.5- 2 litres of water in - not very carefully i'll admit. Put the key in the ignition, turned over and went to look under the car. Belts seem fine and no leaks! Result! So the leak was clearly coming from the water pump. Glad that is sorted. Okay, let's take it for a test drive to see if it keeps temp now that the leak has been addressed. Quick little spin around the block, reaches 90 / half way on gauge and continues creeping, yet again
BUT check engine light has decided to do one! (Need to check if water pump could trigger one?)

Okay, could easily be air in the system as I was a bit slap dash and only 'sort of' decided to release the air via squeezing the bottom radiator hose a few times and I write that being generous. However, I decided I would remove the thermostat as the housing appears to be covered in orange sealant and could quite possibly be due for a change anyway.

Safe to say i'm glad I did. Here is the current thermostat removed from its housing.

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Here is the mating face.

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yeah, you clocked that bolt in the top left hand corner like me, right?

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So, whoever removed / replaced the thermostat last time, instead of drilling the snapped bolt out decided, "nah" and just RTV'd the whole thing. This is the other end of the bolt that was 'wiggling' in its housing, meaning even if I put a new bolt in, it will freely spin as it has nothing to 'bind' to without re-tapping.

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So this is where I currently am:

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With the radiator removed as well. I have ordered a replacement today on FleaBay as it looks like it died of death a long time ago and orange fluid was making a nice break for it when I tipped it upside down.

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Fan seems alright though, wondering if there is a method to test while off the car? Would be nice to not have to replace the full cooling system!

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Along with the radiator, ordered some other bits to start making a CAI, following the removal of that over sized air box and ducting! [£61.21/ 496.77]. Will now need to drill the bolt out, test or replace the thermostat and fix the bolt hole on the housing.

Next update will likely see costs go over the £500 mark, but so far so good with fixing the leak IMO. These rusted bolts will be the death of me, however! I swear, I will have replaced as many as physically possible or just given up and used cable ties (like the plastic inner wheel arches at the moment!) Hers my current selection of random ones from various locations from the front end so far, both broken and not.

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If you made it this far thanks for reading, ill try and keep updates as often as possible but this will be a slow project as I do not need to use the vehicle as a daily ect

Cheers - Steve
 
Monday 15/11/2021

Fleabay goodies in hand:

New rad:
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90 degree for throttle body:
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Rather large cone filter:
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Decided it would probably be easier to remove the thermostat housing fully from the engine block, rather than try to drill out the old bolt with it still on the car.

Wasted another day not really achieving much as x1 of the bolts holding the housing to the block is covered by the heater pipe that goes round the back of the engine into the water pump.

Tried to get the 12mm bolt holding the pipe to the back of the block under the intake manifold out, but access is limited and like all bolts on this car, seems to have been torqued to spec - and then some! Spanner keeps catching on the lip of the sump so unable to get any type of torque required to remove.

Rang my Grandad to see if he could pop up and take a crack at drilling the stuck bolt in the housing out, as he has all the tools required. He's otherwise engaged so will have to wait until tomorrow.

Tuesday 16/11/2021

Grandad came to take a look at the £350 'shed', with his hand drill and set of easy outs present (the old style hand drill - not a cordless!)
He gave it a crack for the best part of an hour before we agreed it would be best to drill the bolt out and re tap due to the easy outs not wanting to bind to the remainder of the bolt left inside the housing. The old hand drill does not have enough oomph to widen the hole made with the drill bits he brought along, so Grandad left me with x2 options:

> Take housing off car and once done, take to him to drill out and tap on workbench
> Buy a cordless and drill/tap myself OR give him a nudge once purchased so he can come back and carry on.

Decided it would be best to continue the route of taking the housing off the car as this is what I was attempting to do in the first place. That way if anything goes wrong in the process of drilling / re tapping, I can just pick up another on the internet anyway.

Due to this I had a thought that it might be a better approach to go from top of the engine down, instead of bottom up. So I removed the fuel rail and started to undo the throttle body body and intake manifold bolts. Managed to get x6 of the intake bolts out before I noticed x2 needed to be accessed from underneath!

Ugggh, so the only thing holding me back from removing the housing is the 12mm bolt at the back of the block holding the heater pipe!!

Tried every combination of 12mm socket, spanner and hand tool I have. Stubby is the only thing close but still unable to get enough force on it for the bolt to undo.

Looks like I'm heading to the shops in the morning to get a drill...

Wednesday 17/11/2021

Woke up and borrowed the Mrs car to take a trip to B&Q / Halfords. Went to B&Q first to take a gander at the spanners to see if they had one with a pivot head or something that would allow the handle to clear the sump lip, in order to get enough force for the 12mm bolt, rather than having to fork out for a cordless drill.

** Offset spanners **

Why did I not think of these earlier in the week!!

Picked up a set (not including these in the build price as these will be classed as a future investment!) and drove home with a specific goal in mind.

Got on the driveway, one foot in the engine bay (one perk of removing enough in order to be able to do this) one hand round the back of the block. Spanner now clears the sump lip but unable to get the angle I need. Got under car - Boom! Minor scrape to the old knuckles but finally the (bane of my life) bolt is loose. Back up to the top of the engine, I managed to wiggle the pipe enough to get housing off the car.

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Ran the housing up to Grandad's who will now drill out and tap. He even advised that he had some gasket maker lying about so will see if he can make one for both the engine side and the thermostat side rather than using RTV like the last bodge job!

Up close look at the process made with the old style hand drill:

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Now we patiently wait. Might be a good time to order a new thermostat and start putting things back that really didn’t need to be removed in the first place!
 
Sunday 21/11/2021

Grandad called. Housing fixed and ready for collection.

Top banana! Swapped for a couple of Newcastle Brown's as payment. Gasket maker he had wasn't suitable in the end so I decided to use a cereal box instead.

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Traced and cut one for both engine side and thermostat side. Ordered a new thermostat and a box of hose clamps from euros [£17.33] & an oil breather from eBay [£6.95] [£24.28/ £521.05]. Reattached intake manifold bolts, throttle body and fuel rail. Either I lost x1 of the fuel rail spacers or the car didn't have one as I could only find x2 out of the x3 when refitting. Used a couple of plastic plumbers' spacers to replicate the same effect.

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Saturday 27/11/2021

Spent to long worrying about the weather in the morning. Moved the motorcycle as a test and wind across the UK is making being outside a challenge! Finally decided to bite the bullet and get on the driveway. Fitted the newly refurbished housing with the cardboard gaskets and new thermostat. Mate came round and weather is looking better in the AM so decide to knock any further work on the head.

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Sunday 28/11/2021

Fitted new radiator attached with old fan.

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Euros clamps worked fine on the hoses coming from thermostat housing but are too small for rad hoses. Ordered a bulk set on Amazon [£13.99 / £535.04]. Will come in handy as I have a few others to replace like the little ones on the hose from the expansion tank.

Tuesday 30/11/2021

Clamps delivered.

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Took a late lunch break (the beauty of working from home!) and buttoned everything up. Battery back in. CAI all attached. Decided to test.
Filled rad fully with water (Slowly this time!) and filled expansion tank to full. Started engine and used the remaining water to top up rad so we now have a full system. Drove up and down the street in the same format as my prior test. Needle reaches 90/halfway and stays put.

You beauty!

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[149,684 - Mileage for reference in case anyone cares]

Parked up and back to work. End of shift, I went back out and drained the water so that it wouldn't freeze overnight. Noticed a slight leak from thermostat housing onto cardboard placed below. Looks like it's from the side that didn't have a lot of meat left on it.

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There is a gap and the pipe itself is not flush with the housing. Minor issue, will button up properly once I have purchased coolant to refill the system.
 
Saturday 04/12/2021

Picked up 4L of coolant while in TESCO Thursday night, saving me a further trip elsewhere [£14.99 / £550.03].

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Re tightened all the hose clamps and re-filled the system for what I hope will be the last time (for a while!). Started her up and still slightly leaking from the housing. After fiddling about with hose clamps and tightness, I finally got it to stop weeping.

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Not enough fuel in the tank to go for a test drive / pick up some more from the local station, so I attempted to use the remaining fuel in the tank to get the car to temp.
Realise this was a mistake in hindsight.
It did get to temp but not enough time to check if the fan kicks in before running out puff. Nevermind, will pick up some fuel while out and about later.

Sunday 05/12/2021

Picked up £6.00 worth of fuel [Optional: add to total if you feel] and refilled on the driveway. Attempted to start the car - battery now struggling to turn over.
Used my mates car to bump start the battery with a set of jump leads. Not enough time to take her for a spin, 'should' be enough juice in it from the bump to last until the morning.

Monday 06/12/2021

Up early. Keys in ignition. Battery struggling to turn over again...
This time used the Mrs's car to bump start. Finally went out on a test drive. Gets up to temp and holds -- We are making progress!

But there is no hot air in the cabin at all.
Only a slight hint of heat from the passenger vent facing the window. Pulled over and now that she is at temp, opened the bonnet to see if I could hear the cooling fan kick in. Stood in rain for 5-10 mins and nothing. Okay, these cooling issues continue.

MOT runs out tomorrow (07/12/2021) Balls. Wanted to make sure the cooling issues were sorted before booking it in.

Drove back home and re-checked the hoses, clamps and to see if anything was leaking. All good on that front. Checked expansion tank and the fluid is 1/3 full - above the min line but not full. I still have some left from the 4L bottle. I'll top it and the radiator up when ready for MOT (to cover any prior leakage).

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Friday 10/12/2021

In the spirit of getting the car ready for its now expired MOT, I thought I would reattach the front end support, bonnet catch and horns (properly - no cable ties) to make the new radiator more solid than it currently is. Attempting to start the car, once again the battery fails to kick over. This is getting annoying now! While under the bonnet, noticed the expansion tank is now empty!?
Where on earth did that fluid go as the car hasn't moved / started since Monday from its rainy 'test' drive and no leaks under the car from what I can see.

Due to the heating issues inside the cabin, I was gonna check the pollen filter to see if this is blocked anyway. Now I'm thinking it could be a possible leak from the heater core into the cabin itself. Inside the car does not smell damp / sweet / coolant, but pulling back the passenger carpet does show water is getting into the car from somewhere - not convinced this is from the cooling system but more the bottom of the windscreen / plenum due to the age of the car and the perished rubber in other places around the windscreen.

[[Mrs came up with a good point and advised it 'could' be a leak as I am unable to verify that the leak did not happen from Tuesday - Thursday and while I think about it, I did not check the new radiator bleed screw before fitting, the cardboard I left down was under the engine, not covering the whole front end - will bear this in mind.]]

Battery charger purchased [Like offset spanners not included in price - Future Investment] to solve the starting issues. Now onwards to diagnose any further loss of coolant. Will check fan fuse(s) to ensure this is not just a simple fix for it not kicking in.
 
A cooling system will suck in coolant from the overflow / reservoir as it cools, if it was hot when you observed it at the minimum mark it's quite likely it's just been sucked in.
 
Hate to be the harbinger of doom but this sounds like a classic head gasket failure. The coolant is, possibly, draining into one or more cylinders as the engine cools down. Hence the reluctant starting as the water in the cylinders is causing a hydraulic lock. I hope I am barking up the wrong tree but the sequence of events under previous ownership is classically:- long term unaddressed water loss/temp issues leading to a catastrophic overheat. On the bright side the head gasket is an easy fix and if you don't fancy that a complete 2nd hand engine is only buttons. These little cars are worth the effort (y)
 
A cooling system will suck in coolant from the overflow / reservoir as it cools, if it was hot when you observed it at the minimum mark it's quite likely it's just been sucked in.
Thanks for the heads up fuzzy. It was indeed hot when I observed. Noted for future reference :cool:
Hate to be the harbinger of doom but this sounds like a classic head gasket failure. The coolant is, possibly, draining into one or more cylinders as the engine cools down. Hence the reluctant starting as the water in the cylinders is causing a hydraulic lock. I hope I am barking up the wrong tree but the sequence of events under previous ownership is classically:- long term unaddressed water loss/temp issues leading to a catastrophic overheat. On the bright side the head gasket is an easy fix and if you don't fancy that a complete 2nd hand engine is only buttons. These little cars are worth the effort (y)
Now the price of the car is starting to make a little more sense!
When I originally started to diagnose the cooling issues, HG was the common culprit even though there are no obvious signs (milky/mayo or bubbles ect) I think it would be beneficial at this point to take a look and swap it out regardless (y)

Saturday 11/12/2021

Early knock on the door. Battery charger delivered. - Rapid postage!
Battery removed and placed on charge.

Got inside the car to get rid of the old pollen filter.

Glovebox out and cut / hack sawed the panel Nissan advise should be removed.

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Think I hack sawed the wrong guidelines as it would make sense to do the perforated lines based on where the pollen filter is housed and the cover needing to be removed. Nevermind, i'll either come up with a way to reattach/replace or ditch all together.

Filter housing and old filter out.

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Someone has been at it before due to the gaffa tape already stuck to the side.

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Nasty looking filter.

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New one ordered on euros [£16.54/ 566.57]. Battery topped up so I put it back in and the car started first time. With housing and filter removed inside the car, heat is now getting to both side vents.

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Will re-test once the new filter has been received prior to booking in MOT / now going down the route of replacing the head gasket.
 
Saturday 18/12/2021

Pollen filter has not arrived after a week of being stuck on 'processing' within the euros app. Must have a backlog of orders due to the holidays and discount codes on the website at current.

Filled radiator and expansion tank with remaining coolant from 4L bottle. Rad to top and expansion tank to max mark.

Ran engine to temp and let cool back down with rad cap off. Obvious loss of coolant from expansion tank, so marked new level with a pen. Ran to temp this time with rad cap on and cooled for 2nd time, further loss. Marked the new level once again. 3rd and final time. Same results.

Calling it and not bothering with a compression test or MOT. Headgasket time.

Sunday 19/12/2021

Cold day, so slow and steady is how I'm going to approach this. Jacked up and back on axle stands once again.

> Horns off
> Bonnet latch off
> Front support(s) off
> Battery out
> CIA off
> Rad fan off
> Rad drained and off
> Thermostat out
> Alternator belt off
> Water pump belt off
> RH engine mount off - Engine lowered with further axle stand and block of wood to support
> Fuel rail moved
> Dizzy cap off
> HT leads off
> Spark plugs out
> Rocket cover - Half off
> Exhaust manifold off


6 rocker cover bolts removed. 4 are fully rounded and prevent removal, too cold to worry about at current.

Stupid exhaust shield removed by simply 'wiggling' it back and forward. Was rusted right round the bolt holes holding it on, so came clean off with some persuasion.
Was hiding this nice crack however.

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Nothing surprises me with this car anymore :rolleyes:

7/8 bolts removed fine from exhaust manifold. Always one. However, complete user error on this one

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Enough thread left for the 2 nut method to replace I believe...
That will be another day's problem.

Lost daylight due to taking my time so left as so

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Nice one, this will test/improve your spannering skills - particularly shifting snapped studs and rounded nuts ;). I'll predict that when you lift the head you'll have at least one nice shiny piston top and combustion chamber!
 
Tuesday 11/01/2022 - Thursday 13/01/2022

It's been a while since the last update....

It's been said on here before but whoever decided that the rocker cover should be fixed with screws and not hex nuts, needs a whack.

Like others, I tried everything in my power to remove them without the need of drilling them out. My efforts were very much in vain, so I ended up buying a cordless drill and a set of metal drill bits and finally removed the remaining 4, over 3 lunch breaks this week.

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Pretty happy with how engine side looks other than this one section next to the dizzy.

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Underneath the cover also looks okay. Might as well clean it up and change the color while it’s off the car!
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Weekend weather looks good, so here's hoping the next update I'll finally heave the head off!
 
Saturday 15/01/2021

Yet another early, freezing cold morning.

Marked the dizzy body and head with a paint pen so it's ready for alignment on re-fitting.

Turned the engine over by hand to TDC, removed the cam cover and marked cam sprockets and chain with paint pen.

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Noticed the bolts holding the dizzy to the head had already been removed (Unsure if this is something I did previously and the bolts are sat in the heroes tub (from 1st post) or they were never on the dizzy in the first place) so gave it a whack with the end of a hammer to un-fuse it from the head.

Dizzy now off. Proceeded to remove the thermostat housing underneath - Much easier to do when dizzy is out of the way! :LOL:

Now the fun part! Upper chain tensioner removed.

Looked in my toolbox for a large adjustable spanner to hold the cams in place. Ah, mine is rusted solid on the adjustment screw after about 5 year of no use :/

Well...that has literally stopped me in my tracks.

Annoying trip to B&Q on the motorbike to pick one up, along with a multi HEX socket bit set (So glad I grabbed this!!). Daylight is getting away from me at this point due to not wanting to gear up and make the trip earlier in the day, so once again, will continue in the morning.

Sunday 16/10/2021

Intake cam sprocket bolt came off without assistance. Exhaust however....

Luckily my next door neighbour was popping out for the day. Roped him in to give me a hand and hold the spanner on the camshaft while I undo the sprocket bolt. It budged with his help but when the bolt free’d he kept the pressure on meaning the TDC alignment is now out (oops!) but it did allow me to progress the rest of the day! Legend.

Camshaft sprockets off and labeled 'IN'/ 'EX'. Idler sprocket was a breeze in comparison to the above ones.

Caps off, relieving pressure evenly. Marked orientation and which bolt is top and bottom for each with paint pen in case I loose the order in storage. Cams now out.

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Outside casing head bolts removed. x10 inside head bolts removed with the biggest HEX socket I had from the set purchased yesterday.
**- Nice bit of luck / foresight. Never normally happens to me but very nice that it did**

Punched them through some cardboard in the order they were removed along with the washers and their correct orientation. Plus in their current condition they can be used for indication to where the problem may be occuring…

5LDRyA.jpg

poxM327gj

(3 & 7)

Ideally, removing the throttle body out of the way would be one of the things that I would have done prior to the above work done already. Again, x1 bolt is rounded - instead of drilling this out, I now have enough play to lift the head.

Decided it would be better to remove the intake manifold with the TB attached as now i can reach the x2 bolts I failed to reach during the thermostat housing removal previously.

With the intake manifold removed, head can now fully come off 😁

4VbBoV.jpg


I’ll let the photos speak for themselves here…

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Safe to say, I think we have found the issue 😎 Now to thoroughly clean, and check if a skim is needed 😅
 
I may be wrong but it looks like electrolytic corrosion due to a past owner running with plain water rather than antifreeze. It may be worth getting the head pressure tested
 
Saturday 22/01/2022 - Monday 31/01/2022

*Minor update(s)*

Saturday 22/01/2022:
Removed the remaining coolant from the block using a pipet with a great deal of patience!
Holding off on cleaning the block surface until the head is done and ready to be put back with a new gasket.

Tuesday 25/01/2022:
Signed up to one of those websites that check garages in your local area to see if they want to take on work that you have requested. Wanting to get a idea of price for both a skim and pressure test as advised above.
(Cheers for continued advise gassed up, it is appreciated (y))

Wednesday 26/01/2022
Automatic email response from website to say garages in local area are busy and they will email quotes ASAP.

Friday 28/01/2022
Sourcing MLS head gasket - found on eBay - Added all the other gaskets needed to replace along with it. Sat in the basket awaiting checkout once head work has been done (like the cleaning I know I need to crack on with!)

Monday 31/01/2022:
Payday! Still no quotes, rang a local engine re builder this morning. £40 for skim - £90 for skim and PT. Taking it down to them tomorrow. Wasted a week but we move...
 
Seen afew corrode like this on the head gasket and been fine
The fire rings on the liners and head no marks or sight of anything passing?

Personally good inspection,maybe some,petrol in the combustion chamber in the head to check for leaks
And inspect for damage ect sams for block
Rear coolant pipe
Head skim and a good long bleed should be ok


Sent from my LM-Q630 using Micra Sports Club mobile app
 
Wednesday 02/02/2022

24h turnaround from shop, incredible workmanship!

Photos of work undertaken speak for themselves. I’ll throw back up the photo of the head in the condition I took it to them. Before:

4fP3nk.jpg


After:

ujZFyU.jpg


No cracks / leaks from PT (y)

A few areas of concern due to the corrosion.
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Nc94WF.jpg


Discussed about taking more material off. Not really worth it as even though visible, it is smooth to touch and advised would be using a metal gasket not a composite one, both agreed it should be fine with teh amlunt taken off already.

Seen afew corrode like this on the head gasket and been fine
The fire rings on the liners and head no marks or sight of anything passing?

Personally good inspection,maybe some,petrol in the combustion chamber in the head to check for leaks
And inspect for damage ect sams for block
Rear coolant pipe
Head skim and a good long bleed should be ok


Sent from my LM-Q630 using Micra Sports Club mobile app

FAn5im.png


These were the only areas of concern from shop. As you can see there is obvious corrosion in other areas, but agreed, if you have seen before on others and they have also been fine, coolant flush along with a couple of fresh oil / filter flushes using some cheap oil to get rid of any remaining crud I can't reach, reckon I 'should' have resolved the issues...
 
From this distance, to my eye, the head looks questionable. If the machine shop says fine I assume it's fine. I don't know what the maximum skim/minimum head thickness is for the CG engine but I assume you're there already.
 
I've just enjoyed reading your thread, as has my wife hannah. Very entertaining :) I liked the middle of lidl comment as I remember the random stuff they would have for sale there.

With regards the spots of corrosion you're concerned about on that head- I have dealt with similar pockets on a Mazda rotary plate where water seals sit and used JB weld epoxy to good effect. Its bloody good stuff. Just smear some onto the areas of concern, let it set over night and very carefully scrape the high points down flush. With a good quality head gasket it should be fine. At least it looks like the corrosion doesn't extend all the way across.

Do you know how much they took off when they skimmed the head?

Anyway- good thread and I'm looking forward to the updates.

Your girlfriend must be ecstatic with the amount of quality time you've been spending out on the driveway breaking rusty bolts off :ROFLMAO:

Alex
 
From this distance, to my eye, the head looks questionable. If the machine shop says fine I assume it's fine. I don't know what the maximum skim/minimum head thickness is for the CG engine but I assume you're there already.
I've just enjoyed reading your thread, as has my wife hannah. Very entertaining :) I liked the middle of lidl comment as I remember the random stuff they would have for sale there.

With regards the spots of corrosion you're concerned about on that head- I have dealt with similar pockets on a Mazda rotary plate where water seals sit and used JB weld epoxy to good effect. Its bloody good stuff. Just smear some onto the areas of concern, let it set over night and very carefully scrape the high points down flush. With a good quality head gasket it should be fine. At least it looks like the corrosion doesn't extend all the way across.

Do you know how much they took off when they skimmed the head?

Anyway- good thread and I'm looking forward to the updates.

Your girlfriend must be ecstatic with the amount of quality time you've been spending out on the driveway breaking rusty bolts off :ROFLMAO:

Alex
@gassed up - Aye, not much more can be taken off according to machine shop

@yoeddynz
Thank you for the kind words from you both :)
I have been keeping a half eye on your blog and must admit trying to follow along with the growing amount of M names of each of yours is a challenge in itself! (prob cause I was reading it late at night on tapatalk!) :LOL:

Funnily enough the shop owner even suggested just adding a slight amount of RTV to the effected areas ahead of the HG being put back. He did tell me how much was taken off but I never made a note of it annoyingly. I'm aware there is not much more he can take off if it ever needs to go back however - I think i'll cut my losses on this engine if I ever need to cross that bridge again!

More time for her to do what she wants to do, eh? :p Let's just say keeping a running total seemed like a great idea... at the time!

Monday 28/02/2022
Not much to update.
Was waiting on funds and then caught a little virus we all know and love worldwide :cautious:

Finally pressed 'purchase' on x2 things in my eBay basket.
x1 Multi Layered Steel Headgasket - [£36.33]
x1 Head Gasket set - [£47.00]
- Graphite Headgasket - (If anyone wants, DM me ~ ill pop in post)
- Exhaust gasket(s)
- Inlet gasket
- Rocker cover gasket
- 10 NEW head bolts

[£90/ £656.57]
[£83.33 / £739.90]

Pricing everything up individually worked out much more expensive and I would rather put fresh stretch bolts in, than reuse the ones I took out :cool: The fact that they come included at that price made it easy decision!
 
The key is to buy several, strip them, make one perfect one from all, scrap the rest and so increase the values of all k11s remaining out there....

I think.
 
Saturday 02/04/2022

Thought it might be a good idea to actually work on the car this weekend, rather than stare at it and internally fight myself for motivation :rolleyes: (hence the lack of updates since Feb!).

Picked up a set of wire wheel drill attachments on Amazon for like [ £9 / £749.29] and went to town on the rocker cover. x3 layers of Primer and x3 layers of graff paint later, currently sat in a box in my garden awaiting better weather for a good clear coat and final touch ups.

5gEg4b.jpg


Sunday 03/04/2022

Finally got the new headgasket in the car!

Before doing anything, all surfaces were cleaned as best as possible and I had to crank the engine over by hand back to TDC, due to knocking it out on removal with my neighbors helping hand. ‘Think’ it’s now on exhaust stroke due to going 1 full rotation since it was set, but I need to ensure nothing clashes later on by turning it over once again by hand, so nothing to worry about at this stage anyway.

Gave me a chance to remove the debris on the piston tops of 1 & 4 regardless.

Clean surfaces all round, bead of sealant for the joins on either side in line with timing cover and new MLS head gasket in. Head back on and in the correct place. x10 head bolts torqued to stage 1, then stage 2 specs.

Left for 1h to set so went and did the washing up.

Back out to undo and redo to stage 3, then using a protractor and a paint pen, marked 60 degrees on each bolt and lined up the marks for stage 4.

Leaving overnight before moving onto cams. Decided it would be ideal at this point to get the intake manifold back on, so after adding a fresh gasket, maneuvering it in place and getting the two middle lower bolts in place and threaded into their holes, now back where it should be.

Not much more I can / wanted to do, so back to it another day (y)
 
Saturday 16/04/2022

Safe to say left it a little longer than 'overnight' to set!

Got on the driveway fairly late in the afternoon. Cam followers put back in place, cams back in and bearing caps torqued to spec.

I know its been said on here before but that little notch of metal where the upper chain is housed also needs to do one! Swear if there is a next time, it's getting cut off...:mad:

Making sure the upper chain is above the metal notch and that the idler sprocket shaft is on the roll pin at the same time was a mission in its own right.

Finally managed to align both, then came the task of making sure there were the correct amount of links between the cam sprockets.

Losing daylight and taking chunks out of my fingers and knuckles, I gave up and decided to come back at it with a clearer head the next day.

Sunday 17/04/2020

Very productive day! :cool:

Started with the cam sprockets where I failed yesterday. Finally managed to locate them correctly on their pins, with my timing marks and torque down to spec.

Timing chain tensioner back in. Cranked over by hand a fair amount of times, before putting it back to TDC. No ugly noises, 5 full links between cam sprocket marks, all looking good!

Decided to paint the timing chain cover the same as the rocker cover, along with the little bracket that comes off the top to hold the alternator wires.

iTi0Ve.jpg


As I was waiting for various layers of primer, paint and clear to dry in the glorious BH weather, got on with the task of putting things back in place:

> Thermostat housing refitted
> Thermostat and cover refitted
> Dizzy Refitted (my self made markings and cams aligned beautifully!)
> Fuel Rail refitted
> Radiator refitted
> Hoses refitted
> Expansion tank refitted
> Painted timing chain cover refitted (with rocker cover placed on top for full effect)

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> Drained oil

Decided rather than remove the one exhaust stud I broke, that I would replace all 8 with a kit I have seen on eBay. Used the double nut method to get them all out.

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Getting closer to running now. Think i'm gonna pull the fuel relay to allow the engine to crack without starting 1st time, to allow oil to get to the places it needs to, before putting back and wishing for the best!

Still need a few odds and sods before I can action this however.

Saturday 23/04/2022

Collection order placed on Euros for x4 spark plugs, an oil filter and some exhaust paste for the crack I uncovered when the heat shield was removed. [£18.06 / £767.35]

eBay order for the exhaust studs made [£11.50 / £778.85]

Water pump and alternator belts were put back and tensioned. Jacked up the engine and put it back on its mount.

Looking at the various screws I had removed and punched through a piece of cardboard, not much left to put back. Got underneath the car and refitted both the sump support bracket and the intake manifold bracket.

The remaining ones are now for the front radiator support and the horns.

Next job on the list is to put the car back on the ground, remove the old oil filter and drain plug once again, now that the engine is back in its correct place.

Then all that's left is to
> Fit rocker cover gasket
> Fit rocker cover
> Fit new exhaust studs
> Fit exhaust
> Fit spark plugs
> Fit ignition leads
> Fit CIA,
> Fit battery
> Fit front supports
> Fill with fluids
> Gum paste exhaust crack

> Pray for the best!
 
Monday 25/04/2022 - Friday 29/04/2022

Over the course of lunchtimes and evenings, the list above has now been ticked off ✅

Finally managed to remove the oil filter after it decided to battle me and lose. Here's the aftermath 😂

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Exhaust studs arrived on Tuesday, so fitted them along with the new hardware they came with and new gaskets. Looking much better.
siTubh.png


New gasket pushed into the rocker cover and with a little RTV on the half moons and round the dizzy cap, refitted along with new hex screws, again looking much better (the missing one has now been fitted ;).
KyqkSm.png


New spark plugs dropped into their respective homes. HT leads pushed on top and fitted back to the dizzy cap.

CIA put back along with the front support(s) to re-home the horns, strengthen the rad and actually be able to use the bonnet latch.

Not much to go now!

Saturday 30/04/2022

Thought it would be a good idea to put my battery on charge due to the lack of use.

Filled the car with fluids. 3L of oil. Water in the rad till full.

Checked underneath, no oil leaking (yet) but water slowly dripping from the thermostat housing. Not an issue at current. Put a microfiber underneath to try and collect the escaping water.

With the fluids in the car, I decided to work on the interior, now that the car is back on all 4 tyres and while waiting for the battery to charge. Replaced the cabin filter and put the glove box back in its place.

With the battery still charging, decided to tidy the car of all the random things I have decided to store inside it.

The spare tire is no longer in the boot, due to the condition of one of the ones that was running on the front, so these have now been swapped out but with the balding one left in my garden instead. The tow pole now has a home in the boot, along with the rear window light cluster the car came with.

Then I thought I would just take photos of all the old, crusty removed parts just for reference.

Air box and ducking
kGLwD3.jpg

Radiator (Yeah, it's been sitting in my garden a while!)
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Shield and plastics
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Throttle cable bracket
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The old exhaust heat shield
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The ‘old’ head studs
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The old 6/8 rocker cover screws
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The old exhaust studs, washers and nuts
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1 very dodge, flat tyre
pnFniKHLj

& a random selection of odds and ends
(spark plugs, thermostat, water pump, gaskets ect)
z92iUe.jpg

- - - - - - - - - - -

Now with the car practically empty and a battery charger showing a green light after 4h of waiting, I finally put it back into the car.

Pulled the 15A fuel pump fuse underneath the steering wheel for the first start to get fluids in the places I wanted them.

Right, let's do this! Primed and turned over.

All as expected, it was trying to start but wouldn’t. :cool:

Put the 15A fuse back in. Right let’s see if it’ll run.

Nope. :cautious:

Same as above, primed and turned over but still failing to start.
Okay, let’s diagnose starting issues....

Does it have fuel? - Yes
Is the battery at fault? - Could be BUT I charged it in order to prevent any issues so don’t think it is.
Starter motor - Wasn’t an issue before and not touched it so why would that be the issue now?
Alternator - I’m doubtful..
Dizzy - Leaning towards it being this. Let me explain.

Okay.
In my engine bay I have 1 spare connector that I cannot for the life of me see where this connects back up to. It’s near the alternator and has the two horn spades coming off from it but my type of alternator does not have a slot for it to attach to as it's the old style where the positive and negative connectors are washer and nut tightened.
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If anyone can shed some light on what this connector is actually for, it would be gratefully appreciated!

Other than this connector being attributed to the starting system, the only other thing I can think is that the dizzy is 180 degrees out of whack following me turning the engine over by hand back to TDC but likely leaving it on the wrong stroke...

Either way, due to the thermostat housing leaking, I drained it of the water, removed the front support(s), rad, hoses and thermostat in order to do a better job of sealing it this time round!
 
Sunday 01/05/2022

Pulled the rocker cover this AM to discover the below.
Safe to say, check, check and check again when it comes to timing! Guessing it skipped and has caused the below. Either that or I must have seriously over tightened the dizzy and half moon cover..

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Safe to say, I think we know whats next on the parts to replace :rolleyes: Might be a while until the next update 😅 (y)
 
Lots of good work accomplished(y)
The seemingly homeless connector may be for equipment that was never fitted to your spec of car, this is very common on cars that are sold in various trim/equipment levels in multiple markets. Where distributors are driven off the end of the camshaft the dogs are usually offset to avoid the problem of being 180 degrees out, my guess is that you got it wrong first time. My K11 doesn't have a dissy so I can't confirm this but more experienced contributors should be able to.
 
Ouch! Crikey. As gassed up said, the driving dogs could be offset but I'm not sure though - I've a friend who installed his k11 dizzy 180 out and he couldn't get it to start until I told him to check that.

I presume you're on the hunt for a replacement cam now.
 
Ouch! Crikey. As gassed up said, the driving dogs could be offset but I'm not sure though - I've a friend who installed his k11 dizzy 180 out and he couldn't get it to start until I told him to check that.

I presume you're on the hunt for a replacement cam now.
Already replaced ;)

Tuesday 03/05/2022

Reached out to a seller on eBay, selling a full head with dizzy cam(s). Asked if they would be happy for me to pay for head but only ship exhaust cam considering that's all I needed.

Quick response with acceptance and a swift payment made.

Received Friday.

Wednesday 04/05/2022

Pulled rocker cover, timing chain cover, lifters, cam sprockets and cams on a lunch break in prep for new exhaust cam in the post.

Saturday 07/05/2022

With cams out, removed engine mount again and made sure timing was bang on and on the correct stroke. New cam in hand, lifters put back and torqued to spec . Upper chain triple checked and all links in correct positions with no noises by turning engine over by hand. Thermostat housing re RTV'd and put back in place. All hoses put back and double checked once clamped down. Rad refit and re filled fluids.

Found a distributor on eBay. Purchased with delivery date of 10-12th May.

Wednesday 11/05/2022

Distributor received on a wet, early morning. No chance of testing at lunch as weather forecast show drizzle until 16:00. Looks like its gonna be a evening job.

18:00 end of shift rolls around, finally dry and bright outside. Grabbing a beer for this one.... 🍺
Out of the box, looks like dizzy is set to #1 already, looks like all it needs is plugging and playing (So long as my timing is correct!).

Spark plugs back in, dizzy pushed into place and tightened hand tight (engine mount still off in case need to re-time manually) HT leads put in correct positions. Lets crank it.

1st time! :cool:
Finally, after what feels like (& probably is) the longest head gasket change recorded on the internet, the engine is running (again!). :LOL:

Ran for a short while but sounded like a tractor due to not being supported by the engine mount and the dizzy being only hand tight. Mount refitted and dizzy tightened down. Wheels put back on, axle stands removed, took her for a spin round the block. No movement on temp gauge from 90/half and no loss of coolant post road test (that I can see so far).

CV boot on driver side is split and will need replacing prior to booking MOT test but watch this space, that feels like it will be a breeze in comparison to the saga above!

Hoping she'll be back on the road in a (not so distant!) future post to come (y)
 
Top man! Weren't you tempted to have the whole cylinder head from your vendor, just in case? :unsure:
Nah, only needed the one part from it. Otherwise it would just be sat with me when could go to someone else who needs it more / needs a spare.

Friday 27/05/2022

MOT day.

Replaced the CV boot ahead of booking the MOT in, as per my previous post.
Tidied up a few things here and there and gave it a ~5 min wash to get all the debris of the paintwork and make it look a 'little' more presentable.

Dropped the car off at 11:00. Just got her back.

Gone from:
kqfFjy.png


To:

1ELSsj.jpg


MOT tester said he was quite surprised when he popped the bonnet and found a yellow rocker cover! Told him the lengthy process to get it to this point in time since purchase. He advised just to pull it and put in a new shell, unless I can weld / know someone who can weld to get the body back up to scratch...

Great job. Just in time for summer!
Summer 2023!

So...
I guess i'll update you all once I know the direction I want to go based on the above news! 😅😎
 
Nah, only needed the one part from it. Otherwise it would just be sat with me when could go to someone else who needs it more / needs a spare.

Friday 27/05/2022

MOT day.

Replaced the CV boot ahead of booking the MOT in, as per my previous post.
Tidied up a few things here and there and gave it a ~5 min wash to get all the debris of the paintwork and make it look a 'little' more presentable.

Dropped the car off at 11:00. Just got her back.

Gone from:
kqfFjy.png


To:

1ELSsj.jpg


MOT tester said he was quite surprised when he popped the bonnet and found a yellow rocker cover! Told him the lengthy process to get it to this point in time since purchase. He advised just to pull it and put in a new shell, unless I can weld / know someone who can weld to get the body back up to scratch...


Summer 2023!

So...
I guess i'll update you all once I know the direction I want to go based on the above news! 😅😎
your hard work and belief has been vindicated, onwards and upwards!
 
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