Clutch; Engine trolley


From: "Smith, Neil"
Date: Mon, 26 Oct 1998 15:12:55 -0000
Subject: [imps] Clutch

Sounds like your gearbox is a bit better than mine. I tried driving without the clutch when taking the car to the garage after the failure of the slave cylinder. There was no way of getting it into gear with the engine running, so I had to start the car in 1st which was surprisingly easy. I then managed to drive it without too much crunching. I had a bit of bouncing around at junctions when I slowed down enough to see that there was nothing coming, but without stopping (I didn't want to repeat the starting in gear trick). I got there, but I wouldn't want to drive like that too often.

------------------------------------------------------------
Neil Smith (mailto:nsmith@uk.att.com)


From: Gary Henderson
Date: Tue, 27 Oct 1998 10:03:50 +1300
Subject: [imps] Re: Clutch

Hi Neil

I can tell you how to eke out the last bit of life, from experience of living at the top of a long hill & having a Mk 1 with the original 5.5" clutch...

First, DON'T do clutchless gear changes! Clutch plates are much easier/cheaper than gearbox rebuilds. And they don't make Imp gearboxes any more.

DO use a lower gear for longer than usual, and keep a light throttle. Each time the clutch slips takes it a notch nearer to total undriveability.
(Remember that the clutch lives upstream of the gearbox. It's easier for a tired clutch to transmit a lower torque.)

Double-declutching prolongs the life of synchros etc but doesn't affect the life of the clutch itself.

The slave-cylinder failure is not very likely to have any bearing on the present slippage.

If yours is a 5.5" clutch, give up ASAP because it will very soon! (One saving grace - those ones always slipped long before getting down to the rivets!) If a 6.25" and you don't have any serious hills, a light throttle & lower gears will get you around for a little while.

Good luck

GaryH


From: Simon Creasey
Date: Tue, 27 Oct 1998 02:27:51 PST
Subject: [imps] Re: Clutch

My Imp features a brand new clutch, which I fitted myself. I have the later type 6 1/4 inch unit, and I would recommend personally that you change the clutch ASAP.
Gearboxes are, I believe, very difficult to come by in very good condition, and if you do manage to find one it'll probably cost you handsomely.
If you have the parts you would be best off fitting it when you have an evening or two to do it in when you can get a friend to help lugging the engine around. It's best to take the engine out seperately to the 'box (leave this in the car) but be careful not to drop any bellhousing bolts when you're putting the engine back on - they're complete sods to find when you've done that. Taking out an Imp engine and putting one back in shouldn't take long, but it may be a good idea to loosen all the bolts a day or so before then you minimize the amount of time the car is off the road. Be prepared, however, to do without the car for a while - you may find (like I did) a hundred and one other jobs to do while the engine is out.

Simon Creasey


From: Gary and Carol Henderson
Date: Wed, 28 Oct 1998 00:56:24 +-1300
Subject: [imps] Re: Clutch

Hi Simon & all

Do what the book says - make a simple trolley to wheel the engine out. Use the proverbial 4x2" timber & four cheap wheels. I used TV castors, but they are a mixed blessing. In figuring out how high to make it, jack the engine so that the weight is just off the rear mount, so you know how high the car will want to rise when relieved of the engine.

Take the battery out, but you can then leave the fan etc on if you want.

Cheers

GaryH


From: Hawes
Date: Tue, 27 Oct 1998 18:02:10 -0000
Subject: [imps] Re: Clutch

In case it helps, we (and David Edge) used a skate board run on a raised platform - it was a two handed job all the same.

Roger and John Hawes


Date: Wed, 28 Oct 1998 09:35:29 +1300
From: Kenneth barlow
Subject: [imps] Re: Clutch

I found that if taking the engine and transaxle out, it is very easy to use 3 sissor type jacks, with a board resting from the exhaust to the water pump with a jack at each end, and one under the end of the gear box. All you do is just raise the jacks a little and push the car away.
I particuly use this to put the engine back in, I have found it VERY successful, a lot easier than making a jig and storing in.

Kenneth


From: Allan Duncan
Date: Wed, 28 Oct 1998 08:56:34 +1100 (edt)
Subject: [imps] Re: Clutch

I find that it is easier to take out the complete engine/gearbox assembly.
There are a few things you need to do this easily, though.

1) Clamps for the rotoflex couplings (see the manual for dimensions).
I have some 1  wide sticky tape with a teflon coat (3M) that I put on the inside of the clamps that makes them slide over the rubber nicely.

2) On the low side of the engine block are four 3/8" UNC holes used to attach the block to a frame. Two are near the sump, the others near the head. I have a frame made from angle-iron that uses the two bottom ones and the one near the water jacket drain. This is a flat triangle, apex at the pulley end, wide base at the bell housing, with a strut rising to the top hole. The strut is in two parts, the lower bit welded to the triangle, the upper bit has some of the angle cut away and the flat bit bent at 45 deg to match the block. There is a bit of angle that runs base to apex, that goes onto the bottom holes.
It sounds complicated in words, but is straight forward in practice. You need the two-part riser if you want some working space to fit the top bolt while the exhaust is still in place. If you welded a peg in place of this bolt you could get away with a simple strut - the motor just leans on it anyway.

The balance point of the power train is just on the engine side of the bell housing.

3) A couple of railway sleepers to sit the car on to get enough working height, unless you have a pit, and a bit extra to put out the front, because in this method you jack the rear up, set some bricks under the three corners of the frame, and roll the car away forwards.

I can get the whole thing out in an hour. It always takes longer to put it back in though :-) I also have a couple of spare gearboxes, so tend to change them while it is all out - it only takes a few more minutes.

Another trick is to use a plumb-bob at the gear shift and pulley to mark where the power train was sitting, so that you can put it back in place ready to roll the car back over.


From: Gary and Carol Henderson
Date: Wed, 28 Oct 1998 11:50:39 +-1300
Subject: [imps] Re: Clutch

Hi Allan

Fair enough, but an extra word to first-timers with the transaxle out:

Take great care not to smunch the flexible-coupling of the gearchange, when running the engine/transaxle back into the car, or even more so, if running the car over on to the transaxle!

Cheers

GaryH


From: Allan Duncan
Date: Wed, 28 Oct 1998 10:18:11 +1100 (edt)
Subject: [imps] Re: Clutch

Yes, it helps if you open up the clamp _slightly_ by pushing a screwdriver into the slot, taking care not to leave a burr on the inside.

And don't forget to make sure the clutch lever push-rod is pointing to the rear ('forwards') of the car. There isn't clearance to move it once the gearbox is in the car.

Of course, while the drive shafts are hanging free you can grease the universals - if you have the sort with a little screw in the yoke you can take out and put a long nipple in. Pity they didn't use the sort with a nipple on one bush.

And when you have got the engine just sitting on the rear mount, and the car sitting sqaurely on the ground, measure the gaps either side of the gear box to drive shafts and shift the engine until they are equal.
Then shift the radiator to match. I find that I need only one clamp on the gaiter - on the radiator shroud.


From: TMo5018257@aol.com
Date: Wed, 28 Oct 1998 04:36:55 EST
Subject: [imps] Re: Clutch

Excuse me for butting in but.....

If you are only changing the clutch, it is a lot easier (in my opinion) to leave the transaxle in place (meaning no hassles with rotoflexes et al), and just take the engine out sat on a trolley jack.

You can leave the rad in place, just undo the bellhousing bolts (and the starter bolts), take off the pipes & cables, stuff a trolley jack under the base of the black (with a plank of wood to spread the load), take your back panel off, give the engine a yank and out it comes.

I have just changed a clutch on a mate's Imp sport, and we had the whole job done in two hours from start to finish using this technique, leaving loads more time to visit the pub..... far more fun.

Unless you need to take the gearbox out, my advice is leave it alone.

Cheers,

Tim Morgan.


Date: Wed, 28 Oct 1998 10:31:33 -0800 (PST)
From: Paul Waites
Subject: [imps] Re: Clutch

> If you are only changing the clutch, it is easier to
> leave the transaxle in place

I agree with Tim here. Leave the gearbox in. It is easier to wheel just the engine out on a trolley jack (With the aid of someone else, as once the engine is free the balance is all over the place).
I find that you do need to take care puttin git back to make sure that the shaft lines up and is not put under any strain when putting it back. ( The trolley jack is useful as the car body will have raised-up when the weight of the engine was removed).

Finally last time I took both the engine and gearbox out together I tried the idea of making a solid frame for the engine and rolliing the car away.
Easy for getting it out, but a pig of a job to get it back as the car body raised so much I couldn't get the front of the transaxle onto its mountings. In the end I put a small bottle jack under the transaxle to lift it up.

> take your back panel off.

Thats the hardest bit, serious knuckle grazing stuff. (Plus has anyone got the panel back on withouut chipping off loads of paint).

Paul.


From: Nickcleak@aol.com
Date: Wed, 28 Oct 1998 16:58:23 EST
Subject: [imps] Re: Clutch

YES !

You need a thin steel plate ,place the R/H side of the back panel in and use the plate between the car side and L/H side of the back panel and it will slide in easily ... then a sharp pull on the plate and it pulls ... a bit like a shoe-horn !
nick ...


From: Nickcleak@aol.com
Date: Wed, 28 Oct 1998 16:58:21 EST
Subject: [imps] Re: Clutch

> Unless you need to take the gearbox out, leave it alone.

I agree 100% get a std one out in 25 mins ... nick ...


From: Gary Henderson
Date: Thu, 29 Oct 1998 10:03:10 +1300
Subject: [imps] Re: Clutch

Hi all

Wrestling with #$@* rotoflexes is indeed the prime reason for leaving the transaxle in!

I still think the purpose-built wooden trolley is at least fully competitive - IF the height has been worked out with the engine jacked up enough to just lift the rear-mount off the cross-member, and IF it is built up on the RH side, to support under the exhaust manifold. And then it is easily done solo - just as well, as there is not enough room around an Imp for two people to usefully employ themselves anyway.
(Incidentally, this is also why Imps didn't mix well on a production line with Valiants & Super Minxes.)

The battery is well worth taking out, as then the aircleaner etc can stay on. Also safer.

The point about the clutch-cylinder pushrod is well worth repeating!

Good luck to the next contender...

GaryH


From: Dave Edge
Date: Thu, 29 Oct 1998 01:08:38 PST
Subject: [imps] Re: Clutch

Hi All,

Yep I couldn't agree more about making sure that the clutch actuating pin is the right way around, I gather that I am not alone in coming across this problem. I had to drop the engine a long way to squeeze it back over.

On the subject of rotaflexes, I have made a compression tool after a suggestion from an ex-imp owner. Does no-one else have one of these. I know the doughnuts are not the nicest things to work on but I can change them in 30 mins, only adding 15 mins to either side of an engine out job.

Dave


Date: Thu, 29 Oct 1998 09:40:46 -0800 (PST)
From: Paul Waites
Subject: [imps] Re: Clutch

> there is not enough room around an Imp
> for two people to usefully employ themselves anyway. (This is
> also why Imps didn't mix well on a production line with Valiants & Super Minxes.) Interesting point: Last year when a convoy of us went to Holland we got into conversation with a group of Bikers heading for the German Bike GP.
They told us that they were machanics at a Rootes Garage in the late sixties and seventies. They liked the cars, (Bikers obviously know a good engine), but hated working on them as the garage facilities were set-up for minx's etc. They said that it was well known to go down with a condition called 'imp mechanics knee' from being down on your knees to work on the engine.

Paul.


From: Gary and Carol Henderson
Date: Fri, 30 Oct 1998 00:13:25 +-1300
Subject: [imps] Re: Clutch

Hi Dave

I've made the compression bands according to the manual, but next time I plan first to make a simple jig out of 6 taper-pins set up on the correct pitch circle, to get the things clamped up with the holes correctly and uniformly spaced. I'm sure this will help ease reassembly.

Cheers

GaryH


From: Gary and Carol Henderson
Date: Fri, 30 Oct 1998 00:21:51 +-1300
Subject: [imps] Re: Clutch

Hi Paul

A good kneeling-mat is essential for any form of prayer...

Cheers

GaryH


From: Mark Norman
Date: Thu, 29 Oct 1998 11:34:27 -0000
Subject: [imps] Engine trolley

Has anyone made an engine trolley with a liftable platform for the engine? I've been toying with the idea of designing one, but thought I'd ask before beginning to think very much!

I suppose at its simplest it could just be 3 jacks screwed to a board on wheels, though I was thinking of something more like an engine stand with a lever arrangement to raise & lower it's wheels.

Mark.


From: Jon Day
Date: Wed, 28 Oct 1998 22:51:51 -0000
Subject: [imps] Re: Clutch

Snap On ratchet spanners work wonders on the side bolts on the cross member.
Jon Day
P.S. Im not one of their sales reps.

----------
>> getting the panel back on without chipping off loads of paint
> You need a thin steel plate ,place the R/H side of the back panel in and use
> the plate between the car side and L/H side of the back panel and it will
> slide in easily ... then a sharp pull on the plate and it pulls ... a bit like a shoe-horn !


From: Gary and Carol Henderson
Date: Fri, 30 Oct 1998 01:41:09 +-1300
Subject: [imps] Re: Engine trolley

Hi Mark

That sounds like the germ of a good idea, and there may be a ready source of 90% of the assembly, going very cheap:

How about the chassis of an old rotary lawnmower? They have had single-lever lift/lower systems for many years now; before that they had separate height-adjust per wheel (which might also have its virtues.)

The counter-balance spring would need beefing up.

Cheers

GaryH


From: Gary and Carol Henderson
Date: Fri, 30 Oct 1998 01:43:51 +-1300
Subject: [imps] Re: Clutch

>Snap On ratchet spanners work wonders on the side bolts on the cross member

And it helps to spread the sides apart very slightly with a carefully-cut length of timber, to ease insertion of the cross-member.

Cheers

GaryH


From: Nickcleak@aol.com
Date: Thu, 29 Oct 1998 16:29:53 EST
Subject: [imps] Re: Clutch

> I've made the compression bands according to the manual, but next time I plan
> first to make a simple jig

Are you talking about standard rotoflexes or the competition ones ?
I find the competition ones far easier: they are less springy , no tools needed except a big screwdriver and Plastic hammer !
nick


From: Hawes
Date: Thu, 29 Oct 1998 21:41:50 -0000
Subject: [imps] Re: Clutch

I understand that the Clan Club do a special tool for compressing rotoflex couplings before removal for about £2.50. Does anyone know the phone number or a suitable contact to source these wonderful tools?

Roger Hawes


From: Gary Henderson
Date: Fri, 30 Oct 1998 12:33:22 +1300
Subject: [imps] Re: Clutch

Hi Nick

My experience is confined to standard ones.

Are the comp ones wise on standard skinny shafts?

Cheers

GaryH


From: Allan Duncan
Date: Fri, 30 Oct 1998 15:09:10 +1100 (edt)
Subject: [imps] Re: Clutch

> 'imp mechanics knee' from being down on your knees to
> work on the engine.

My late father had a garage with both hydraulic hoist and separate pit.
The pit was the preferred location for most work, the hoist was good for doing brakes - you could take off all four at once.

Pits are luvverly - you can stand up under the car, put planks across as jack points etc..

My drive way is a 15 deg, and with the rear of the imp on stands, the car is level while the engine is at comfortable working height, and there is moderate access underneath as well.


From: Nickcleak@aol.com
Date: Fri, 30 Oct 1998 09:46:29 EST
Subject: [imps] Re: Clutch

> I understand that the Clan Club do a special tool for compressing rotoflex
> couplings before removal for about 2.50.

Neil Brookes Clan Owner's Club Membrship Secretary 01656 744741

i guess you have to join the club first ..

nick ...


From: Nickcleak@aol.com
Date: Fri, 30 Oct 1998 09:46:26 EST
Subject: [imps] Re: Clutch

> Are the comp ones wise on standard skinny shafts?

ahh , well i have always used comp ones , they last a long time and i think they would be an improvment on a std car as you don't get the wind-up , rubbery effect when starting off . The comp ones flex a lot less , so maybe that is why they last longer ?

Nick ..