MINI Max has a New Little Brother, Buzz

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Re: MINI Max has a New Little Brother, Buzz

Postby Minidave » Fri Jun 27, 2014 9:43 am

Still not out of the woods, when it run, it runs fantastically......but then it dies and won't restart. It may run several minutes, but when it quits it's like someone shut off the key. I hot-wired it to see if maybe I had a broken wire somewhere in the loom, no difference. I'm really having a hard time understanding what's going on here - in my world when an engine has spark, timing, compression and fuel - it runs.
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Re: MINI Max has a New Little Brother, Buzz

Postby MiniManiac » Fri Jun 27, 2014 10:27 am

Minidave wrote:Still not out of the woods, when it run, it runs fantastically......but then it dies and won't restart. It may run several minutes, but when it quits it's like someone shut off the key. I hot-wired it to see if maybe I had a broken wire somewhere in the loom, no difference. I'm really having a hard time understanding what's going on here - in my world when an engine has spark, timing, compression and fuel - it runs.


I am sorry that you are having issues with Buzz. I understand the level of frustration going on with you. I know you will get it sorted :)
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Re: MINI Max has a New Little Brother, Buzz

Postby Minidave » Fri Jun 27, 2014 12:52 pm

I think I found the culprit - a bad condenser in the distributor - I've had them go bad before in my career and usually it just causes the points to go bad in a short number of miles, I've never had one that would start and stop the engine like this. I ran it over 20 min in the shop this morning after changing the bad one out and it ran perfectly, I'm starting to feel a tiny bit of confidence at last that I may make this event after all......tomorrow I'll go up to school and do the alignment, and if it's still running properly I'll take a run up K-10 to Lawrence. If it does THAT OK, then I'll start feeling better about going for sure.

This is a short vid I took after it had been running 20 min or so.....

http://youtu.be/JbcgHCoptaU
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Re: MINI Max has a New Little Brother, Buzz

Postby MiniManiac » Fri Jun 27, 2014 3:05 pm

:thumbsup2: :thumbsup2: :thumbsup2: :thumbsup2: :thumbsup2: :thumbsup2: :thumbsup2: :thumbsup2: :thumbsup2: :thumbsup2:
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Re: MINI Max has a New Little Brother, Buzz

Postby Minidave » Sat Jun 28, 2014 2:37 pm

Took my first real test drive up to school today, the engine runs sweet and has good power - it feels so much stronger than it did before. Now it feels like I remember a Mini should run! I'm really happy with the gearing choice I made - I was second guessing myself after seeing what RPM I'd be turning at what speed, but I'm happy to report that it's a non-issue. On the way back from school we jumped on the highway for a couple miles and it pulled right up to 70 very easily, and I only ran to 4K before I shifted, plus I didn't have it wide open. Plenty of power, plenty of acceleration and the engine's just loafing along at modern car highway speeds - that's exactly what I was after in this whole project. Don was following me and said it didn't smoke or smell rich at all....I think he was surprised how well it ran on the highway too.

Before, the engine just felt like it was dragging itself up to speed, and once it got there it didn't seem to have much torque, it would definitely lose speed on longer uphills - now if I step down on it it immediately pulls on up - even on hills. I also was concerned about driving in town at city speed, but it pulls 4th gear beautifully, even as low as 15-1800 rpm.

Buzz is still living up to his name as there are multitudes of rattles and buzzes still there - the exhaust is hitting in two places, and two of the saddle clamps are less than 1/8th inch away from the body - I'm going to try and find some band-clamps and replace those. There are still dash rattles, the speedo doesn't work - which is a real disappointment since I spent about $200 getting the right gears so it would - it worked before so there's something not hooked up right with the cable - I'll see if I can fix that before we go, but that's why I have a Garmin. Overall, the engine is so smooth that it's nothing like before.

Now to the springs - so far I'm calling them an unqualified success. The ride quality is better than in my modern Mini - definitely not as harsh, and when I cross those bridge expansions that used to break my back and rattle my teeth - it's a non-event! I have the ride height a little high right now as I think they'll settle down a bit over the next 1000 miles or so it's not as solid and planted as some, but I'm OK with that - I'll give up a little handling for a significantly improved ride, especially on a long trip like this.

It runs a little hotter than I'd like to see, but then I don't know the calibration on the gauge, it runs about 1 -2 needle widths above the middle of the gauge - I have no idea what temp that relates to so for now I'm not going to worry about it, but I may go ahead and pull the radiator and re-install the electric cooling fan, just in case. I haven't driven it far enough , long enough or on a hot enough day (today was only about 80*, tho it sure felt hotter than that to me) to know what it's really going to do, so I'll have to investigate a little further. I borrowed Don's infra-red thermometer so maybe I can find out what temp it's really running first.

I wish I had a week to break it in before we head out instead of three days, but I'm feeling a little more confident each day. We tried to do an alignment at school but one machine was completely down and the other wouldn't boot up one of the laser/cameras so we just did it the old fashioned way - with a tape measure. That got it pretty close, but I have a friend who can align it on Monday if I decide to. I'm definitely going to invest in some adjustable lower control arms.

That's today's report :mrgreen:
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Re: MINI Max has a New Little Brother, Buzz

Postby Minidave » Mon Jul 14, 2014 10:43 am

Wow, I'm behind on updating this thread.....

As some may know, we left for Milwaukee and after 65 miles or so the gauge we reading almost in the red, so I turned back and took my '09 Clubby instead to Mini Meet East meets West. I just didn't want to take a chance on ruing a new engine.

Once home from the event I didn't get to work on Buzz for a few days, but yesterday I started installing the new mechanical temp gauge - this way I'll know for sure if the engine's running hot or not and I can formulate plans from there.....I got a nice tight fit on the gauge in the hole, but I may decide to swap this location with the tach. Haven't decided yet but it will make it far easier to run the capillary tube out to the engine from the center of the dash rather than this end.

I drilled the hole in the wood dash, and while I had it apart went hunting for the last bad rattles and buzzes still there - and I found them, I think! I pulled the cluster because the cover was loose - that was due to some clips coming undone - those clips had security screws in them, fortunately I have a set of those bits, once removed I'll put good old Phillips head screws back in. Once I had the plastic outer cover off I saw that one of the round bezels had a broken locating tab, some clamps and a judicious application of epoxy fixed that.

Then I found out why my speedo quit working, instead of a threaded end and a nut to hold the cable on, this car uses some sort of clip to retain the cable - mine's missing so I'll have to engineer a solution for that as I see no reference to a retaining clip in any of my Mini parts sources. So, two rattles down.....

And I think I finally found the big one, with everything out of the dash I started pounding on the top with my fist and found I still had a major noise - turns out to be the ash tray! I haven't removed it yet, but I'll bet I find some broken retaining tabs on it too - I'll figure out a solution for that and I think that will be it for dash rattles and buzzes....yay! A quiet Mini at last!
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Re: MINI Max has a New Little Brother, Buzz

Postby Minidave » Mon Jul 14, 2014 1:12 pm

This is what my speedo cable is supposed to look like, that little tab is broken off on mine. I'm thinking I could epoxy or weld a little tab onto a screw clamp - or I could just buy a new damn cable, they're only about $20.

Image
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Re: MINI Max has a New Little Brother, Buzz

Postby MiniManiac » Mon Jul 14, 2014 5:21 pm

Minidave wrote:This is what my speedo cable is supposed to look like, that little tab is broken off on mine. I'm thinking I could epoxy or weld a little tab onto a screw clamp - or I could just buy a new damn cable, they're only about $20.

Image


Just get a new one. It is a PITA to get it in the transmission :)
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Re: MINI Max has a New Little Brother, Buzz

Postby Minidave » Mon Jul 14, 2014 7:50 pm

I used a screw clamp on it, seems to have done the trick.
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Re: MINI Max has a New Little Brother, Buzz

Postby MiniManiac » Mon Jul 14, 2014 8:57 pm

Minidave wrote:I used a screw clamp on it, seems to have done the trick.


:thumbsup:
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Re: MINI Max has a New Little Brother, Buzz

Postby Minidave » Tue Jul 15, 2014 5:22 pm

An eventful day of sorts......first off, the weather is absolutely gorgeous! 70* and low humidity, unheard of in July in Kansas - thank you polar vortex, or Canadian low or whatever you want to call it! :thumbsup:

Anyway, I finished the mechanical temp gauge installation except for the connection to the engine, the adaptors supplied with the gauge did not fit the engine so I called Autozone - the instructions listed a part number for the adaptor I did need - they said they couldn't get it. I found it at Summit Racing, but their website said it wouldn't ship till August sometime. on a whim I drove up to Victoria British and took a look in the Midget catalog, thinking I might just buy a new sending unit and try that while I looked for the adaptor - guess what - they had the exact part I needed in stock! VB for the win, once again!

Once installed I fired it up and let it idle in the drive - I'm having a MINI shop day at my shop on Sat so I thought I'd take advantage of the cool weather and clean out the shop - something that hasn't been done in months. The Jag surprised me with a dead battery again, so I hooked up the charger - it sparked and shut off - I found a couple of bare wires right at the metal housing so I tore it down to fix the wires, rolled the Jag off the lift and hooked it up to charge while I clean the shop.

All this time Buzz is idling so I walk over to check the temp after about 10 min - right on the money. I have a 160 thermostat and it was running 160. Of course, it's like 70* today, so not much of a test. I'll take it down the road a little later and see if my speedo works and whether the temp will climb again like it's been doing. Fingers crossed!
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Re: MINI Max has a New Little Brother, Buzz

Postby Minidave » Sat Aug 30, 2014 4:15 pm

Previously I'd installed adjustable front control arms and tie rods, and today I installed the adjustable brackets for the rear too. I had a heck of a time getting the old bolts out - I'd back them off a bit till they bound up, squirt a little Kroil on them, then run them back in again and let it soak, lather rinse repeat till they all came out clean, then I ran them on the wire brush and ran a die down the threads too. You can see the adjustment hole is larger in the new bracket, and it has a serrated outer washer to hold the adjustment.

And this is where they go, at the front outer end of the trailing arm....

This allows you to move the trailing arm vertically for camber adjustment, and horizontally for toe . Now I need to run up to school and put it on the alignment machine and get it dialed in. Winter project is to drop the rear subframe and fuel tank, get them cleaned and painted like I did the front, replace bushings, brake lines and other worn parts, then just drive it and have fun with it
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Re: MINI Max has a New Little Brother, Buzz

Postby Minidave » Mon Sep 01, 2014 5:11 pm

I took Buzz up to school to do an alignment once I had all the new brackets in - I wasn't quite able to get the rear into spec, although it's really close now......I'm going to have to shave a bit off the edge of the serrated washer to allow the arm to move a little bit more, then it should come into spec.

On the way up it ran OK, but it would not idle and died frequently, I adjusted the idle speed up a bit at school but even so it still wanted to die at stops - I got to 95th and Antioch and it died - period.

Later that evening a friend and I towed it home, today in the shop I took a look at it to see what was up.

By process of elimination - it had good spark, good compression, the plugs were clean but sooted around the edges and two were wet - I have a carb problem.

Makes sense since that's the only part of the engine I didn't rebuild! :roll:

Makes sense too as those were the same symptoms MiniManic's car had this summer in Milwaukee - a new o-ring for the choke fixed his till he can get to it this winter. I'm going to tear mine down and go thru it completely and that should fix it. I also have some new firing pins I can put in even those these look OK and will probably work fine.
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Re: MINI Max has a New Little Brother, Buzz

Postby Minidave » Fri Sep 05, 2014 5:17 pm

So I pulled the carb off and took it apart.....when my friend Seth had a similar problem in Milwaukee this summer the o-ring in his choke had broken, dumping fuel into the carb. When I pulled mine apart I expected to see something similar but mine looked fine other than a few cracks in the shaft seal on the outside end - not usually a problem other than it can let dirt in.

You can see several splits in the outer seal, and the tan o-ring at the other end which is still pliable and looks OK.

So I went ahead and took it all apart, the only other thing I found was a slightly worn oval main jet - which is pretty normal - and some more torn shaft seals on the main shaft.

I cleaned it all up to re-install this afternoon, hoping that somehow it will now run, after it died on me the other night and hasn't started since.....

So, I turned the key and learned a few things....

1) I now need to pull the choke to start a cold engine - never had to before

2) The engine now idles below 1K, wouldn't do that before either.

3) The engine idles much more smoothly - I thought the lumpy idle was due to the HP cam I installed.

4) The mixture came into tune perfectly - would not do that before either - you had to lean it out so far it almost wouldn't run before you could see any difference.

5) Then there's this.....

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-cJXn1i1Nu4


I've never seen one do that before!

Anyway, the engine seems to run well now, although it's raining so I didn't get to drive it tonight after I was done, I'll do that tomorrow.

Right now I'm happy that it runs again!
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Re: MINI Max has a New Little Brother, Buzz

Postby MiniManiac » Fri Sep 05, 2014 9:01 pm

I am so happy that Buzz is running properly for you. It has been a true labor of love!
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Re: MINI Max has a New Little Brother, Buzz

Postby Minidave » Fri Sep 05, 2014 9:13 pm

Yes, and now I know all the secrets of the HIF carburetor, so we can do yours if you decide. Mike will send me a carb kit to replace yours.....sure made a difference.

You remember the first time I tried to tune yours I said it acted as it if were lean and rich at the same time - well - it was! The main mixture adjustment was lean from being in the mountains, but it was leaking fuel at idle making it rich at low speeds. Mine was doing something similar tho not as bad......but eventually it got bad enough to kill the engine and not let it restart.
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Re: MINI Max has a New Little Brother, Buzz

Postby Minidave » Sat Sep 06, 2014 2:50 pm

Buzz report 9/6/2014

Dateline: OVERLAND PARK

Not only did Buzz start easily this am, but ran perfectly all day today over several start/stop trips to Autozone, Johnny's tavern for lunch and the filling station for a tank of high test.

Conclusion: so far so good! :mrgreen:

More as it happens.......
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Re: MINI Max has a New Little Brother, Buzz

Postby MiniManiac » Sat Sep 06, 2014 9:52 pm

Buzz was sounding and running good!!

We will have to plan another "Supervise Seth" work day for my carb :) :)
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Re: MINI Max has a New Little Brother, Buzz

Postby Minidave » Tue Sep 23, 2014 3:15 pm

I found out that the radiator in my car was for the original 998 motor, I'm told it will barely cool a 998 on a winter day, so it's not even close to being enough for a 1275, let a lone a hotted up one! So I ordered a new supercool 3 row that I'm told will do the job and it came in Monday. Before I installed it I also put in a new heater valve to replace my leaking one, changed the thermostat to a 180* from the summer 160* as it's heading into winter now and decided while the coolant was out to pull the heater and see if I could fix the rattle in it too.

Once out I found a few things, the artful bodger had been working on it too, he'd replaced the foam bits that hold the heater core in the case, but it was still loose, so I drilled the holes out slightly and put some grommets around the pipes to keep them from chafing on the sheet metal case and as a nice side benefit, it tightened the core up so it no longer moved or rattled!

Then I worked on the diverter flap - the one that sends the air down to your feet or up on the windshield for defrost, these parts are all built to a price (extra cheap!) and as such there are no bushing used on the pivots, I put some think heat shrink tape over the pins and replaced the missing foam on the flap and now it moves smoothly and doesn't rattle either.

Finally, I found that the heater assy had not been installed correctly, there were no nuts to back up the mounting tabs at the firewall, so I found some of the right thread and now it's mounted nice and solid. I bumped it with my fist and heard no rattles - hopefully that's got it!

Later today I'll put my new radiator in it and see how it runs - it's not all that hot out but I should be able to see if it's going to be stable or keep climbing like it's been doing. I hope this is the last piece if the puzzle.....
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Re: MINI Max has a New Little Brother, Buzz

Postby Minidave » Sat Sep 27, 2014 5:23 pm

So far so good, on the run down to the Sonic on Thursday I got caught in stop/go traffic so that wasn't a real test, and on the way home it was fairly cool - that said it ran right where it was supposed to on the gauge. Tomorrow Dimini and I are going to take about 100 mile run and it's supposed to be mid 80's, that should be a good test.

Today I went after more rattles on Buzz, this time it was the left door.

First off, you need a pair of pliers like these to remove door panels and trim - I saw Edd China use them on Wheeler Dealers years ago and found mine at good old Harbor Freight for IIRC about $5!

The screws holding the latch handle bracket were just loose - so that was easy to fix....

And the window winder assy was missing two screws completely (that should look familiar to those who watched the Project Binky vid) so I ran up to the Ace to find some 1/4-28 cheese head screws - they didn't have any but some 1/4-28 X 1/2" bolts worked just fine.

The screws that held the lock switch bracket were just .....well, not really screwed into anything but the door panel cardboard, so I made up some speed clips to give them purchase on the metal retainer behind the door panel and that took care of that.

Lastly, the chrome trim that holds the inside window wiper (and ant-rattle fuzz) was bent like a banana, and when I got it off most of the clips were not attached either. I carefully straightened the trim and spread the clips evenly over the length of the trim and viola - it snapped right into place!

I'll bet it's as quiet as a new 1980 Mini now, which probably isn't saying much! :lol:

Tomorrow on our drive if it stays around 180-190 I'll call it good.

IF


(/\ thats a big if :lol: )
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Re: MINI Max has a New Little Brother, Buzz

Postby Minidave » Tue Oct 28, 2014 6:20 pm

Today's Buzz report, brought to you by Duzz detergent! :mrgreen:

So, I still had a hot running problem, only on the highway - around town it was perfect - but on an 80* day after about 40 miles, even with my new radiator it would creep up over 200*. Conclusion - I need more cooling capacity.

So I went out and found a heater core that would fit perfectly in the openings below the bumper. Then I whipped up some super zoomy brackets to mount it with and today she's in. All I have left is to plumb it up and give it a go. Of course, lately it's only been about 65* so I don't know if I can give it a real test but we'll find out.

I also bought some cheap Miata seats - the driver's seat in Buzz is just not comfortable on long trips, I got the drivers side mounted in but I still need to build some legs for the back end of the seat. I'll tackle that tomorrow and should have Buzz on the road by the weekend. I feel I really need to get some more miles on him and make sure all my "issues" are finally sorted. Been a long haul, still have a ways to go but he's getting there.
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Re: MINI Max has a New Little Brother, Buzz

Postby MiniManiac » Wed Oct 29, 2014 7:42 am

Good work!!
Seth
08 MCS - JCW
1974/1993 Classic Mini - 70 WHP!

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Re: MINI Max has a New Little Brother, Buzz

Postby Minidave » Wed Oct 29, 2014 10:04 am

Today I'm going to build the rear legs for the Miata seat, then I should be able to put him on the road again by the weekend.

Only two weeks till we head to Arkansas, and I need to get some road test miles on him. I haven't even started the engine since I put the clutch in it, let alone drive it!
Hi! My name's Dave!

"Max" '09 LB/LB Clubman S
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Re: MINI Max has a New Little Brother, Buzz

Postby Minidave » Sun Nov 02, 2014 1:17 pm

All righty then......I just drove Buzz around the block, the first time since I pulled the engine for the new clutch, built the extra cooling system and built a new seat for him....so far so good!

The clutch is definitely stronger (the old one would slip a bit on takeoff or under hard throttle) and the new seat is miles ahead in comfort.

Today it's about 60* so the cooling system isn't working too hard to keep up - since I changed so many things it will be interesting to see how it does. I put in the new rad, changed to the smaller water pump pulley, re-jetted and tuned the carb (it was rich, not lean) and have added the extra core in the front. As a test I'm going to run it with only the new rad and water pump pulley first and see what it does.....if the temp climbs I'll open the new core up half way at first, and all the way if needed (it better not need all that cooling on a day as nice as this one!)

I should know something after 50 or 100 miles this afternoon. I expect by the time we get back it will be in the low to mid 70's, temps I'm expecting on our run in Arkansas next week.
Hi! My name's Dave!

"Max" '09 LB/LB Clubman S
"Racing Green" 89 Mini

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Re: MINI Max has a New Little Brother, Buzz

Postby MiniManiac » Sun Nov 02, 2014 2:12 pm

Good luck!!!
Seth
08 MCS - JCW
1974/1993 Classic Mini - 70 WHP!


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