This is topic Cars! in forum Books, Films, Food and Culture at Hatrack River Forum.

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Posted by Nick (Member # 4311) on :
Anybody into cars at all? Anybody building a car, and engine, or a chassis? I don't know if there has ever been a thread for people who like the technical side of cars, so here's the place to talk about it. [Smile]
Posted by anti_maven (Member # 9789) on :
I have a 1972 MGB GT. I spend more time under it than inside driving, but I like it that way...

Now, as the babyseat doesn't fit it has been put up for sale (notice I don't say I have put it up for sale [Wink] )

Wanna classic anyone?
Posted by Glenn Arnold (Member # 3192) on :
Well, there was my Prius thread.

Anti Maven: Sorry, for me to buy a sports car that needs that much maintenance, it better be italian.
Posted by breyerchic04 (Member # 6423) on :
I got to beat an old engine with a hammer once, but that's my experience.

But here is my car. My Dad totally restored it in 2001, it has a Porche engine but that's all the real specifics I remember.
Posted by Glenn Arnold (Member # 3192) on :
Looks sweet breyerchic. I'd buy that classic before the MGB too. I've still got a 1972 super beetle waiting for me in my mother in law's garage. I just need the time and money to restore it.
Posted by Nick (Member # 4311) on :
Prius? Decent cars. Very dangerous to work on those near the inverter or HV battery.

*is a Toyota technician*
Posted by RunningBear (Member # 8477) on :
I know what you mean. They have a whole class for auto extraction when it comes to fire fighting.
Posted by Lavalamp (Member # 4337) on :
I wouldn't mind an MG, but it would have to be a rag top.

If I were going to buy a car to tinker with/restore, I think I'd want to start with a beat up Morgan or Austin Healy.

But...before I did that, I'd want to learn how to do all the work myself for a full restoration. I'm good at auto electrical systems, but the rest of it is kind of a mystery to me. I can do the bondo-style body work, but to restore a classic you really need to be able to do lead fill or cut & weld body panels.

I'm just never going to be able to devote the kind of time to it that I'd want to.

And buying one of those cars in good condition is, to me, an astronomical waste of money.

Ah well...

Should've bought that Jaguar XKE when I had the chance.

Posted by brojack17 (Member # 9189) on :
It's always been my dream to restore a '57 Chevy. At first it was a convertible or two door hardtop. But now that I have a large family, I would like to trick out a 4-door, nomad, or station wagon.
Posted by Glenn Arnold (Member # 3192) on :
Did MG make a car that WASN'T a ragtop?
Posted by Nick (Member # 4311) on :
I still have dreams of a '67 Shelby Mustang or '66 Nova. I think I'll do the '66 Super Sport Nova someday. I've helped somebody with a Ford before so I think I'll try working on a Chevy now, just to keep it different.
Posted by anti_maven (Member # 9789) on :
Dream cars? An Austin Healey 3000 or a 1930s Bentley open Tourer - the ones with the extremely large supercharger bolted onto the front. Ooh, ooh, time for a lie down.

Glenn, MG made loads of hard tops - the GT for example is the Grand Tourer version of the soft-top B. Think a poor man's E-Type.

I'd love an italian sports car, but at the time of purchase I had to balance the desires of the heart with the cold hard practicalities of the wallet.

Still, the B is fire-engine red and shiny chrome with wire wheels. The engine has been "tinkered" with and it has a rather non-standard exhaust such that I have a HUGE grin whenever we go out for a drive. It even has the round 60's style knob on the gearstick for full pseudo Ferrari splendour.

If you've ever seen the opening of the original Italian Job, you'll know how I look as I drive to work from our little village in the mountians: Sun glinting from the brightwork, John Barry genius accompanied by a positively indecent exhaust rort and Anti_Maven in a silk suit and Raybans weaving down the hairpin bends. [Cool]

Well, if I had a silk suit. [Wink]

PS - It's also been converted to run on unleaded and gets about 25-30MPG. My consience is almost salved...
Posted by anti_maven (Member # 9789) on :
Breyerchic - that's a nice restoration. Did your dad have to put a counterweight under the bonnet to stop it flipping from all that Porsche torque?

Nice, very nice.

Reminds me of a "joke":

An itinerant worker goes up to big house to ask for some work:

It: Got anything you need doing guv?
Owner: Yes please, go around to the back and paint the porch.

A couple of hours later...

It to owner: Here's the brush and I'm all finished. One thing though, it's not a porch, it's a Mercedes......

*grabs coat, hails taxi*
Posted by Glenn Arnold (Member # 3192) on :
Breyerchic - that's a nice restoration. Did your dad have to put a counterweight under the bonnet to stop it flipping from all that Porsche torque?
I'm willing to bet that the "Porsche" engine in Breyerchic's VW is from a Porsche 914. Which means it's a VW engine.

The only difference is that the 914 engine was 1700cc, had dual port heads, and fuel injection. I think it made about 80 HP. The 1969 beetle came with 1600cc, single port heads and a single barrel Solex carburetor, making about 65 HP.

Of course nowadays you can buy a brand new 2300cc dual carb monster engine that can put out around 200HP. Theoretically it's considered a VW engine, although there probably isn't a single VW part in it.
Posted by JumboWumbo (Member # 10047) on :

Oh, and I listen to car talk every saturday morning if that counts for anything [Dont Know]
Posted by Jon Boy (Member # 4284) on :
I need some advice on car repairs.

I really need to get some tie rod ends replaced on both of my cars, but I'm a little intimidated. I've replaced starters, an alternator, and a set of brake calipers, so I feel like I'm a fairly decent amateur mechanic. But I usually rely on my dad to help me if I get stuck, and he's now in another state, so I'll be on my own.

Is this something I can do myself? I'm well aware that I'll need to take it in immediately for an alignment, but I'd really like to save a couple hundred dollars and do it myself.
Posted by Primal Curve (Member # 3587) on :
You have a repair manual for your car, Jon? If you don't just drive down to Autozone and flip through the Haynes manual. You'll get a good idea of what's involved in replacing the tie rod ends on your car. On both of my cars, it wasn't a problem.

On my wife's car, I just needed:
Breaker Bar & fat, 1/2" drive socket to break the spindle nut.
Various wrenches to remove the brake caliper
Another socket and the breaker bar to remove the steering knuckle
Wire to hold the caliper out of the way
Gear Puller to pop the tie rod's ball joint.
Wrench to remove the tie rod end.

Torque Wrench to replace the tie rod end and all mounting bolts for the Steering Knuckle, Brake Caliper and Spindle Nut.
New Cotter pin for the castle nut on the ball joint
New Grease for the spindle bearing (after being cleaned first, of course).

Lots of Fast Orange hand cleaner to get all that effing brake dust and grease off of my hands.

Lots of well-placed curses for all things mechanical.

Lots of wishing for an air compressor and pneumatic tools so I don't have to bust up my knuckles anymore.

Ah well, that's for when I get a garage.
Posted by Shan (Member # 4550) on :
Nathan and I love Car Talk.

It's a great Saturday am show whilst dusting and folding laundry and all those other chores.

Nick -- what do you know about those little Toyota Echos?
Posted by Nick (Member # 4311) on :
Jon Boy, Primal Curve has pointed you in the right direction. It's mostly about having the right tools and knowing the proper procedure, as he said.

Shan, Toyota Echos are still on the road today for the most part. The engine in the echo (1NZ-FE) is still widely used even now. the Yaris, Scion xA and the Scion xB utilize that engine.

Even the gasoline engine the Prius (1NZ-FXE) is very similar to the Echo, Yaris and Scion engines. I think the only thing different is the pistons.

Yaris = Echo replacement

The Echo had a floorboard corrosion recall as well as a crankshaft sensor recall, which has been fixed in the latest 1.5 liter 1NZ-FE engines.

The cars are very(for lack of a better or actual word) plasticky, but they do run forever if you take care of them. They don't need much major service, the valves pretty much stay in adjustment, or at least you hope so since you have to pull the cams to make any kind of valve clearance changes. You don't have to replace a timing belt on them due to the valvetrain being powered by a timing chain.

[ March 01, 2007, 03:06 AM: Message edited by: Nick ]
Posted by Dragon (Member # 3670) on :
My car is clearly much better than any of yours.

Posted by Jon Boy (Member # 4284) on :
Primal: I do have a Haynes manual, but it hasn't been the most helpful in the past, which is why I wanted some other opinions. It doesn't sound too terrible, though (well, at least no more terrible than some other jobs).

Dragon: The faux wood paneling is très chic. And it even comes with girls standing on it!
Posted by Glenn Arnold (Member # 3192) on :

Your post describing the Prius engine as similar to the echo engine got me thinking. I was under the impression that the Prius uses an Atkins cycle engine, which shouldn't have a camshaft because the valves are driven off the crankshaft.

I googled atkins and prius, and came up with some pages that claim the prius engine is an atkins cycle, and others claim it's an atkinson cycle. If you have personal experiance that the prius has camshafts, then it must be atkinson cycle (which I'd never heard of before), but I still see claims that the prius has a 9.5:1 compression ratio, but a 13:1 expansion ratio. That sure sounds like atkins cycle to me.

Can you clarify this at all? Does the prius engine have elements of both cycles?
Posted by Risuena (Member # 2924) on :
Jon Boy - you might want to see if you can get your hands on a shop manual for your car. You can usually find them pretty easily on ebay, either in big, fat book form or on CD and I've found them really helpful since they're often much more detailed than the Haynes manuals. Other than that, I can't help you much.

The big automotive fun that we're having right now is that my dad's 1970 corvette is at the body shop getting repaired, refitted and repainted.

Once the weather gets better, though, we've got lots of cars to work on including more stuff on the vette once we getit back.
Posted by Nick (Member # 4311) on :
The Prius does have a DOHC setup with variable valve timing. I've done a valve clearance inspection on one, so if they don't have cams, I was hallucinating. [Smile]

Atkinson cycle is simply delayed intake valve closing so when the piston raises on the compression stroke, it pushes some of the air-fuel mixture back into the manifold for the next cylinder, making the most of the air-fuel mixture in the cylinder. More engergy captured from less fuel at the cost of power.

The Prius is not the only vehicle to utilize the atkinson cycle either. The Camry hybrid also has an atkinson cycle engine.

Does that answer your question?
Posted by Jon Boy (Member # 4284) on :
Good idea, Risuena. I hadn't thought of it—I'll have to check it out and see what I can find.

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