February 2004 Activity Log
Hooray! Finally got decent weather today, temp was near 60F. Took 0716R for a ride out a back road where I used to wring out the Porsche. One tight sweeping turn that was comfortable (just) in the Porsche at 60 MPH was very comfortable at 70 MPH in the Lotus. Returned home on the parkway (the first time on a high speed divided highway). The filter I put on the valve cover breather spewed oil onto the valve cover but it appears to be just the oil that came with the filter. Put the hose back on for the time being while I clean the oil out of the filter, then will try again.
Painted the swirl pot today. Used a three-step process from Duplicolor consisting of an adhesion promoter, Metalcast base coat and Metalcast final coat. The final result is pretty nice considering that I cut it in half, welded it back together and didn't attempt to clean up the factory welds. I need to let the paint cure fully before I continue with the swirl pot replacement project, which is good since I haven't decided what kind of radiator hose I will use yet.
Checked the progress of the POR-15. It's dry to the touch and appears to have formed a nice film over the inside of the swirl pot. I should be able to start painting the outside tomorrow (weather permitting).
Closed both ports on the Swirl pot with duct tape and made a cardboard disc to cover the filler neck then poured the POR-15 into the pot. Covered the filler neck with the cardboard disc then tipped the pot so that all areas were covered by the POR-15. Opened all ports and drained the pot back into the POR-15 can then moved it to a clean shop towel and left it drain on the towel for 30 minutes. Righted the pot, wiped the filler neck clean and placed the pot in front of a small fan positioned so the fan blows into one port and out the other. According to POR-15 instructions it will take 72 hours to completely cure. Inspection with a flashlight shows a silver film in every interior nook and cranny.
Removed the valve cover breather hose that was hanging down by the exhaust header and replaced it with the K&N filter that I ordered from Jeg's. There's lots of cleaning to do in the engine compartment once the weather breaks and I can pull the car out of the garage.
Disconnected the heater control cable clamp and was able to move the heater control valve, so it appears that the cable is frozen. Will work on the cable as time permits.
Got a skim coat of filler on the swirl pot then sanded it. Cleaned the inside with the POR-15 "Metal Ready". Amazing how much rust was removed, even after I had sanded the inside while I had the pot dissected. Left the solution work for about 45 minutes then rinsed several times and placed the pot in front of a small space heater positioned so the heater blows in one port and out the other. Should be dry tomorrow morning so I can coat inside with the POR-15 sealer.
Cleaned 98% of the rust from the inside of the swirl pot using a variety of grinding and sanding attachments for my Dremel. Removed the paint from the outside using a 4" wire brush attachment on a 3/8" drill. Dressed the ends of the input and output ports using the bench grinder. Turned the top half of the pot CCW 90 degrees and welded both halves together then ground the welded area flat. Next I'll put a skim coat of filler on the pot then sand and paint it.
Received the POR-15 kit that I ordered on the Internet yesterday afternoon. Has to be some kind of record for delivery time! Also received the crankcase filter that I ordered from Jeg's on the 16th. Cute little filter, complete with a small tube of filter lube.
Replaced the battery hold-down strap with a lower-profile rubber one from Advance Auto Parts. Shortened both battery cables and installed the proper ends, also from Advance Auto Parts.
Started the swirl pot replacement project. Cut the pot in half 3" from the top with my Dremel. Found a lot of rust inside, but most appears to be on the surface and should clean up with a wire brush. Will change the orientation of the top port from the original to 90 degrees counter clockwise then weld it back together. After it's done I'll coat the inside with Por-15 then pressure test it. I chose Por-15 because they responded to my questions and Kreem did not.
Ordered a clamp on crankcase filter from Jeg's today. Will replace the rubber hose that hangs out of the valve cover.
Ordered a Weber DCOE poster from Griot's Garage.
Finished installing the battery tray and battery. Here are before and after photos. Now that it's tied down, I don't have to worry about it flopping around under hard cornering. The ends on the battery cables are not the correct ones for a side terminal battery so I will change them as soon as I find suitable replacements.
Measured the rear drop links and anti-roll bar installed by Jerry Blaine in the 1980's. The bar is 9/16" diameter and the drop links are 11/16" diameter. The rod ends on both ends of the drop links are adjustable as is the attachment point for the top of the drop links.
Sucked about 20 years of crap out of the well behind the battery with my shop vac.
Cut a piece of sponge vinyl matting to fit in the bottom of the battery tray. Matting is black, is 3/8" thick and is designed for fatigue relief in retail areas. We use a lot of it behind the bar in the Tavern.
Bought some 5/16x18 hex couplers. They are supposed to be for connecting two lengths of threaded rod but I think I may be able to use them with fender washers to level the battery tray.
Removed two cable clamps from the area where the battery tray will mount. I will find a new attachment point for the one that held the positive battery cables after the battery is mounted. The other holds the wiring harness and will mount on the frame after I drill and tap a hole for it. Tapped the original battery hold-down bobbin for a 5/16x18 button-head cap screw, which will be one of the screws that secure the battery tray. Test fit the battery tray. Sure is a lot of space in the well behind the battery.
Removed the battery, battery keeper and hold-down strap and found that there is plenty of room for the stainless battery tray I bought from Summit Racing. Went to Home Depot to get some stainless bolts, nyloc nuts and washers but found that the selection is very poor. Ordered an assortment of stainless fasteners from BoltDepot.com. Will clean up the area where the tray will mount while I wait for the fasteners.
Took some photos of problem areas on the Europa today. Almost finished with the garage project so I should be able to start working on the car very soon now.
My two immediate concerns are to remount the battery and modify the swirl pot I purchased last month so I can re-route the radiator hose and free up some area around the velocity stacks on the carb. I'm still not sure where I'll move the gas tank catch-can to, but it can't stay where it is now.