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Cadas
3rd January 2022, 05:45 PM
Needing a break from land rovers, the next project after Sid is a Ď59 Thames van.
https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20220103/9b86503308432a7bdb4e245486decdea.jpg

This was pulled from a yard in Burra in the north of South Australia, but sign writing in the door suggests it was the shop truck at the Hamley Bridge garage.

It appears to have been mechanically well maintained but was abandoned after a minor front end shunt that broke the windscreen and messed with the drivers door.

Sid was pretty rust free and parts are a plenty. This is neither of those things.

A few pics on the 400e owners group brought a mixture of laughs, pity and morbid curiosity.

Tear down dayhttps://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20220103/1fccfb5610bbc4b52f8eaede5f05c4fc.jpg
https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20220103/1c6d622f26b2c89c366e983be43a11dd.jpg
https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20220103/b2b811dcb9a8f10c70b72eaa7f912424.jpg
The chassis and mechanicals are all there and just surface rust. Barely used any heat, just penetrating oil. The chassis is immaculate.

Dropped the gearbox, itís very Ďickleí , such a change working on something you can pick up with one handÖ!!

Cadas
4th January 2022, 06:49 PM
Tear down continues. Itís a strange one.

Pulled the engine which was seized when we dragged the van out of the yard. No plugs, 30 years of sitting, no surprise.

Strip down was a dream, all bolts came out without a single issue, even the exhaust manifold. https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20220104/b30e1107693aa07ed7a7c210af9933d9.jpg

So kept going, and then Iíve found the real problem that took the van off the road. https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20220104/10ece91acdaf9d515b4bc40ca57fab88.jpg

It looks like the head gasket went and the #2 cylinder water locked and it bent con rod and smashed the piston.

Iíve stripped the rest of the block, the rest of the pistons came out easily, the bores are pretty good, there are no gouges in the #2 bore.

As to the crank, in can only measure it at the main bearings and they are spot on, so if itís damaged then itís on the journals and I canít measure that.

Itís a conundrum. This is the numbers matching originalí59.

Iíve been toying with swapping the engine out for ax modern engine for drivability, but the niggle is that this is original.

Think Iíll send it to the machine shop for testing while I look and see if I can find a modern engine that will fit.

JDNSW
4th January 2022, 06:56 PM
From what you are describing, there would seem to be a good case for keeping it original. But then, it is not a vehicle I would restore even in my wildest dreams, so don't pay any attention to my advice!

Tins
4th January 2022, 07:18 PM
Modern engine? Something from Fordís Kent series?

Cadas
4th January 2022, 07:41 PM
Modern engine? Something from Fordís Kent series?

No idea at the moment. I was initially thinking a 4 pot ford of later vintage that would fit the very tight engine bay.

Now Iím thinking something like a modern Japanese unit with an auto box

But that means engineering.

At the moment Iím scratching around for options.

chuck
4th January 2022, 07:46 PM
What about the 2.2 litre Ford Diesel and auto out of a ranger.

Not that popular so should be reasonably priced.

Also a Landrover motor

Cadas
4th January 2022, 07:50 PM
SpaceÖ.

The engine compartment is tiny. Thereís a great blog by a bloke trying this very thing and he bought 3 Japanese mid 80ís mini vans and nothing fit.

The design of the exhaust manifold is the key, itís a simple pipe with holes cut in the side that clamps in the side of the cylinder head.

Iíve a spare 2.25 and thereís no way thatís going to fit.

If anyone has an old consul, zephyr or similar engine lying aboutÖ let me know!

LRJim
4th January 2022, 08:00 PM
You could always mount an engine and box in the rear [emoji12]

grey_ghost
4th January 2022, 08:06 PM
What about a Honda Crx (83-91) B16A1

Honda make brilliant engines - being a 1.6 itís probably small enough AND smaller displaced than the original donk? (Would that nake enguneering easier?)

Thatís if the original donk is cactus.

Cadas
4th January 2022, 08:07 PM
Thatís the sort of thing I was thinking about. If they came with an auto box might be an option

grey_ghost
4th January 2022, 08:10 PM
Thatís the sort of thing I was thinking about. If they came with an auto box might be an option

I believe that they came with a 4 speed auto.

You could buy a half cutÖ

Cadas
5th January 2022, 07:53 AM
After spending and evening searching for parts, sadly the original engine is not viable. Looking at over $2k just for new con rods, pistons and small bearings.

With all the other bits and machining Iíll be into this for $5k and it will still only do 60km/h.

So, plan is to find a 1600 Kent cross flow and in a perfect world, 3 speed auto. Something from a cortina or escort.

Enough power to be drivable but not so much as to give me a headache with brake and suspension upgrades.

Parts are cheap and thereís plenty of performance upgrades of the shelf.

NowÖ. Where to find one. (Found a 1300cc local, but think the 1600 betterÖ. Or a twin cam [emoji2][emoji2])

skidrov
5th January 2022, 08:46 AM
Another thought, dunno how find-able they are these days: Datsun 1200, or the Datsun OHC 1600/1800/2000? There were autos, 5 speeds, heaps of tuning parts...

Cadas
5th January 2022, 09:01 AM
Another thought, dunno how find-able they are these days: Datsun 1200, or the Datsun OHC 1600/1800/2000? There were autos, 5 speeds, heaps of tuning parts...

Odd you should say that, I was looking at an 1800 Datsun engine and gearbox on gumtree. Only thing putting me off was the owner making a lot of comment about 14:1 compressions, seemed a bit Ďtunedí

skidrov
5th January 2022, 09:58 AM
Hmm possibly a little high compression-wise... [emoji39]

But a 2000 with a mild tune & a 45 Weber on a cross-over manifold in front of an auto would work well. And possibly comparatively low cost?

(Yes I am showing my age & past... [emoji69] )

chuck
5th January 2022, 11:24 AM
Son is doing up a Datsun Stanza at the moment.

Has rebuilt & installed a Nissan 2 litre with turbo - putting out huge numbers.

Hi motor has tripled in price since he first bought it

Car has probably doubled as well.

cjc_td5
5th January 2022, 11:44 AM
Electric? Nice small motor unit and a heap of room for batteries on or under the floor?

goingbush
6th January 2022, 07:25 AM
That really would be an Ideal vehicle for an EV Conversion.

Cadas
6th January 2022, 08:22 AM
Itís something we did look at, but the costs really donít make sense. I canít see a way to achieve it for less than $25k.

Unless anyone has suggestions

gromit
6th January 2022, 10:18 AM
One of my boys just scrapped a late 70's Toyota Corolla, engine ran and had an auto box. The shell is being used to make a mould for carpets so possible to get access to the engine & box if needed.
Apparently another Corolla turning up soon, no idea of the engine condition or whether auto or manual.

Engine is compact but only 1200cc. Parts like rings, shell bearings etc. were cheap & readily available. Lots of tuning options.

Similar Toyota engine used in forklifts but 1500cc capacity, son has one here that might end up in his Corolla [bigwhistle]


Colin

goingbush
6th January 2022, 12:36 PM
Itís something we did look at, but the costs really donít make sense. I canít see a way to achieve it for less than $25k.

Unless anyone has suggestions

only cost me 22k to convert my Landy 4 years ago, (using all new parts)
Probably could do the same for 16k now or even less using salvage parts.

chuck
6th January 2022, 01:14 PM
Going Bush

Do you have a link or info.

Have a series III tray top with a non working 186 motor - so this would be the time to do it.

Cheers

goingbush
6th January 2022, 04:05 PM
Going Bush

Do you have a link or info.

Have a series III tray top with a non working 186 motor - so this would be the time to do it.

Cheers

my build page Going Bush (http://www.goingbush.com/ptev.html)

The cheapest way to go would be using Nissan Leaf parts , unfortunally timing sucks right now as international shipping is crazy slow / expensive due to Covid, Best bet is to get onto a few facebook EV pages as smashed EV parts are coming up often now.

Cadas
8th January 2022, 11:22 AM
New favourite tool

https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20220108/0b9954747025a1331758fbd3fec843d1.jpg
Plasma cutter made short work of all rusted bolts.

This is the worst job on the teardown, ford used the steering box to mount the gear linkages. So you have this Rusty birds nest of linkages, arms, rods, springs and stuff, all of which hides the fixing bolts.

Rust looks bad, but I have an entire set of lower repair panels that replaces everything below the headlights

Cadas
20th January 2022, 01:26 PM
While stuck back in geelong Iíve been trying to come up with a plan for the engine and gearbox.

The engine solution would appear to be a Datsun L18, compact but critically, they are not vertical when installed and this gives great space for the carbs.

Gearbox is the problem, I either have to try and get the existing 3 speed column shift to work a four speed box, or settle for a 3 speed auto. I gather only one 4 speed auto exists from a 1984 maximaÖ.

My other ideas included a bmw E39, but the electronics look to be a pain.

The other option is a Toyota 3tc but again, only one apparent 4 speed auto.

This could take a while

Tins
20th January 2022, 01:55 PM
I gather only one 4 speed auto exists from a 1984 maximaÖ.


This could take a while

Good luck finding one of those. The only 810 derived cars sold here were the Bluebirds. The Maxima derivative was sold in the US mostly. They had the L24 engine, which isn't a problem as the bolt patterns were unchanged from the 4 cyl L engines. 4 speed auto with O/D. Maybe the local Datto mobs would know of a source. Here's one OZDAT (http://ozdat.com.au/)

BradC
20th January 2022, 06:23 PM
The L18 doesn't look much smaller than a Volvo B21/23. They're a slant motor also.

Cadas
1st February 2022, 07:36 PM
Toyota!

Given gearboxes are harder to find than engines, I went hunting for that first and came across a very tidy 4 speed overdrive automatic from a corona for the princely sum of $80!

So now on the hunt for an engineÖ.