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28-05-2014, 04:08   #91
Daved_XB
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Finally the last thing I wanted to get done was another of the small details that probably don’t matter to normal sane people but that bug me a lot… one of the previous owners made themselves a set of bonnet pin’s instead of spending he few dollars to get the correct items… the ones on the car where just a flat disk cut to shape & screwed on



The genuine items are a raised dome shape & have a rubber seal that sits between them & the bonnet to prevent scratching the paint



Genuine vs home hade



Fitting was uber simple, just unscrew the 4 screws holding the home made plate on & oh & then clean the bonnet surface beneath.. amazed how much wax had worked its way under there





Then just screw the new one on, luckily the old owner used the same factory screw holes & didn’t just make 4 new ones… I was half expecting him to have do so…



Of course the hole for the actual R clip to slide through to lock the bonnet in place is now too low as the new plate is a raised dome shape.. so I needed to undo the locking nuts on the pin & move it up about 4mm



All done… again a tiny detail but one that was ****ting me for a while now…



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28-05-2014, 04:09   #92
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In preparation for my big brake kit that should be here any week now…. Or so I’m told by the supplier, I decided to order the last part of the brake system that hasn’t been changed out yet… so now I have a new brake booster to go in the car.





Until the brakes turn up, I’ve run out of things to do now, but I guess that will give me time to focus a bit more time on my XB project now…
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28-05-2014, 04:17   #93
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Your working late
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29-05-2014, 09:59   #94
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Love this car! Awesome project to have!
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04-08-2014, 02:38   #95
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Hey Guy’s, just a quick update on this project…. It’s just been lots of driving the last few months which has been great.. but no I feel it’s time to do some more upgrades/repairs to the old girl.

First up my Baer Big brake upgrade finally turned up… this has been a bit of a long process to actually get them, but long story short the first kit I’d chosen (Wilwood) turned out not to be street legal in Australia.. so I upgraded to a Baer setup.. first batch wasn’t right & had to be redone from memory.. 2nd set was shipped out of Sydney but went missing in transit.. but the 3rd & final set made it to me & they look great… BTW quick shout out to Ray Jnr at Pentastar for being so good & easy to deal with through what became an almost comical list of issues..

The front & rear kits look like this..



The fronts are a 13” crossdrilled & slotted rotor



The calipers a 6 piston set up



The rears are a 12” disk which has the drum handbrake built into the rotor





The rear calipers are a 4 piston set up, these rears are the spec that Baer recommend to balance the front set up

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04-08-2014, 02:38   #96
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I’ve also found some other things that I think it’s time I fixed.. the bottom of my exhaust headers are badly smashed from years of what I can only assume was Dukes of Hazzard style jumps, so I ordered a new set of ceramic coated one to replace them





Also both of the engine mounts are showing signs of wear & cracking so I’ve ordered a new set of upgraded mounts now..



Finally the engine it’s self has started to develop several oil leaks, the works from what looks to be the rear main seal, so I’ve ordered a complete engine gasket kit & a full set of frost plugs & I’ll pull the engine out & replace the gaskets to fix any leaks, replace the mounts, the exhausts & from the sounds of it the harmonic balancer sounds likes it’s on its way out so I’ll probably swap that & give the engine a good once over to see what if anything needs to be done..



I was so tempted to start ripping the brakes off this weekend & fit the new ones, but I’ve opted to wait for all the above parts & do all the work at once…
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18-08-2014, 23:44   #97
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So most of the new parts I’d ordered turned up last week… it looks like the weather will be nice on the weekend so I’ll get a few miles in cruising before I take the old girl off the road & pull the engine out.. so I now have a new set of ceramic coated performance headers to replace the badly battered & rusted ones on their now…







I also have the gasket kit, which is of course the main reason I’m pulling the engine as my rear main seal is buggered now… I also have a full set of frost plugs for the block..



I also have a new set of uprated engine mounts to replace the badly worn ones in there now..



I’ve not been happy with the wear on the shafts on my center carb for a while now & if you read this thread all the way through you may remember that the metering block is not the correct one, it was one I pulled off another Carb I had laying around… so I opted to buy a new 500cfm center 6 pack carb..



Another think that has been bugging me lately is that the external balancer on the engine has started to wobble about & make a very crappy sounding rattle at idle now, so I ordered a new one to swap out whilst I have the engine out





I also ordered a new chrome dual pulley crank end… for no reason other than the old one is dented on one side & it’s something that I notice every time I look under the bonnet & it annoys my OCD..



I’ve also ordered some other new parts that I will need for the big brake upgrade… but more on that when they turn up & I start that work
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24-09-2014, 04:30   #98
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Well… I wish I had a big update of work done to the old girl, but I don’t really… I’ve been doing a stupid amount of travel for work & that combined with some B’days & a Wedding thrown in I have had little to no time to take the car apart, so I’ve just been driving the wheels off it every chance I get & aside from the front ride height having finally settled about a quarter of an inch too low now & the one of the steering bolts just slightly rubbing the header on full left lock all the mods to the car have been a big success… I have a couple of weeks leave coming up next month so I suspect that I’ll pull the engine & swap out the brakes then…

I bought a new toy for the garage, having the 4 poster is great… but it’s been a pain to get the wheels in the air whilst the car is on the hoist to get them off & as that will step one of operation swap the brakes I decided that a solution was needed … so now that problem is solved…







The last part of my big brake upgrade was picking the right size master cylinder for the job… there is some detail math that should be used for working this out taking into account the number of pistons front & rear, size of said pistons, pad size & what sort of pedal feel your after to work out which of the different bore & stroke master cylinder size you should get…. I opted to call the nice people at baer brakes in the US & as it’s their brake kit I simply had them work all that out for me. Now sadly Baer didn’t make any that I actually liked the look of… but Wilwood do make a nice one that I like that comes with an optional front/rear bias adjuster on a bracket that bolts nicely in place… so that was the model I was after. It came done to a choice of two for me a 15/16” bore & a 1” bore size… the 1” would have given a slightly harder pedal feel with a slightly shorter pedal length… so I went with the 15/16” bore in the end as I want my GF to be able to drive the car too

New Master



Adjustable front/rear valve





Bracket installed



The bracket is on the fender side of the master cylinder so I’m hoping that it fits in without touching or I will have to adjust the bracket slightly to get it to fit… but the engine will be out at that point so I’ll have lots of room to get in & work out how to fit it.

The other thing to come from my long chat with the guys at Baer was that I will really need 18” of vacuum to run these brakes… & at best my cam makes me 8”…. Now I have a vacuum tank fitted already but of course it can only store the max vacuum the cam can create.. so I ordered an electric vacuum pump for the car also… these are used on hybrid cars today to provide the vacuum for the brakes when the car is running on battery power.. so I’ve ordered a Hella unit that I will wire in & plumb in-line with the tank that way the tank will always have at least 20” of vacuum..
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02-10-2014, 02:22   #99
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So I was out driving on the weekend & I ended up in a nice area close to the beach that had a LOT of speed humps & I’ve come to the conclusion that the header design that Hooker make for this car is just plain dumb… the headers on there now are smashed to hell anyway, but the new lower stance on the Hotchkis suspension is making it really bad…



So what’s really dumb in my mind is that the header actually runs underneath the steering arm, so it’s inches lower than it needs to be..



Now I had bought a shiny new set a while ago & I hadn’t really though this through.. as I’d just bought a new set of the same Hookers..



But now I’ve decided that I will not be putting these on the car as I will only end up with the same ground clearance issue & smashing shiny new headers isn’t something I want to do… so I did what I should have done in the first place which is some research & I found a few options that allow for tighter fitting headers that run above the steering..





The only issue with these headers is that you need to run the Mopar performance mini starter or they will foul, so I’ve ordered that too…

Also I had ordered the Hotchkis Quick Ratio Idler and Pitman Arm Kit upgrade for my steering to a quick, 12:1 ratio from the slower, factory 16:1 ratio… I’ve never been able to fit this as it fouls the headers, so a quick call into Hotchkis confirmed that they too are running unmodified Dougs headers on their E-Max Challenger so now I know I’ll be able to add that too
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29-10-2014, 00:07   #100
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Ok, so I continue to be very time poor in the garage lately & with what little time I did have I’ve been working on mates cars who needed to borrow my hoist… so I’ve got so little done on this…. But I have a few hours Sat & all of Sunday this coming weekend to cut my fingers, bust my knuckles, drop spanners & say f&@k a lot… so looking forward to that…

Now what has happened is that my new shiny ceramic coated Dougs headers that run above the steering arms have arrived… & they look great..



You can clearly see the difference to the other set of headers that I had bought….



Also my Mopar performance mini starter turned up too…. It’s very compact & should allow for the installation of the Dougs headers without any fouling.. I think I’ll wrap some heat shielding on this when I install it





Now one of the things I’ve been doing whilst driving the car the last few months is trying to get the suspension setup the way I wanted it for handling without being spine snapping on the bumps & I found that I just could not get a good feel from the QA1 adjustable shocks that I fitted what must be 4 years ago now back in Dublin.. so I decided that since every suspension part on this car is the same as the Hoskitch E-Max challenger except the adjustable shocks perhaps the simple answer was to fit the exact same shocks that they run on their car… so more new shiny parts are here… these have 24 points of adjustment as opposed to the 12 on the QA1 shocks & they have been tuned by Fox for the E-Max Challenger… so hopefully that will make the difference I’m chasing..



The front shock is simply adjusted for firm/rebound with a knob on the top easily accessed from the engine bay



But the rear is adjusted by a knob on what I would have called the top of the shock & not from the body..

]

Now this is the exact opposite as to how the adjustments are made to the AQ1 shocks which have the adjuster on the body end of the shock..



So if I installed the new shocks in the same orientation then the adjuster knob will be tucked way up in the back of the car & not really accessible unless the car is up in the air like this..



I did a big of google research & I found a pic of the rear of the E-Max Challenger & it does indeed seem that they have the rear shocks mounted what I would have called upside-down…



So I think I’ll call them tonight & have a bit of a chat as to which way they should go in as there are no destructions to follow & they are very friendly & have happy to help with my stupid questions thus far…
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29-10-2014, 00:10   #101
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Oh & I did make one small step forward in next phase of this project to pull the engine out to fix the leak & replace the mounts, headers etc… whilst I had a mate here we did pull the bonnet off & bugger me is that thing heavy!! But not that that is done I am no longer at the mercy of needing to find a mate with some free time to help as I have all the tools I need to get the gearbox & engine out on my own… so until the weekend this is how she sits awaiting me to hit it with hammers…





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02-11-2014, 19:56   #102
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I got to spend a very brief bit of time in the garage this Sunday… not as long as I had hoped or planned but enough that stage 1 of operation remove the engine was achieved.. so the gearbox is out again… Now, I’ve skipped the usual detail of how such an event occurred, but I figured that as this is the second time I’ve removed this box, you can just go back & reread that part of this thread…



Now for a pic of the actual issue that prompted me to pull the engine the very annoying oil leak…



What do you mean you can’t see it?... look closer…



Ok.. so it doesn’t look like much, but this drip leaves a 1cm pool of oil a day under the car & that is more than enough to add up to a mess on the garage floor is the car sits for a week or more & I figure that the oil is better off in the actual engine too… so next weekend it’s coming out.

I also removed the old bonnet hinges, they used to be very wobbly & didn’t have a very smooth action at all… on closer inspection I see that the drivers side one has cogs & the teeth are well worn & very rounded off… so this clearly explains that. Getting the bolts out was fun… as much as I’m glad that there was as much rust protection sprayed under this car as there was to protect against winters in the UK & Ireland…. Undoing bolts that are coated in this crap is hard work…



The worn cogs..





And the straight cut new ones… hopefully the bonnet will have a smoother action once these ones are on..



Now if you cast your mind back a post or two you’ll remember that I’m switching headers from Hooker to Dougs now to gain back some much needed ground clearance & as such I need to fit a new mini starter for the Dougs to fit… well I was expecting the old starter to be a bit bigger that it actually was… it’s not exactly huge compared to the new mini one



Also the terminials are slightly different between the two, the old one is a twin post setup



The new one is a single post & a blade connector so a little bit of rewiring will be needed, but looks nice & simple thankfully



So that’s it till next weekend when I pull the motor & start to replace any & all seals or gaskets that are leaking & replace the buggered mounts etc…
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09-11-2014, 22:45   #103
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I got a bit of time this weekend to make a bit more progress on this…. So the transmission was out & next up was to remove all the engine accessories & then the engine…

The first thing that I removed was the vac tank & once this was out I strated to ponder where I’m going to install the new vac pump that I’ll be running… first thought was just to leave the vac tank out.. but then I started to think if I should leave it in..



So I guess I’m in two minds now… as I’m going to install an electric vac pump for the brakes, do I need this taking up room in the engine bay…. Technically I guess I don’t, but as the pump will be controlled by a vac pressure switch I guess if I don’t have the holding tank then the pump will be running constantly.. but with the tank still in place once the tank is full the pump will turn off until the level of vac drops again….



The next steps where pretty simple really.. I removed the Alternator, the PS pump, the clutch fan… then drained the radiator & removed that from the bay..



The parts pile as it started to build up..



The radiator seems to be in great condition, but that said I think I’ll take this opportunity to have a rad place look it over & give it a good flush.. I’m also thinking that when I put all of this back together that I might look at running waterless coolant rather than going back to old school coolant..



Then once everything was disconnected from the engine & the only thing holding it in the car was the two engine mount bolts.. I connected the engine lift to the engine & took up the weight as the block was leaning rearwards as the transmission was no longer holding it up.. with the weight off the mounts the bolts just slid out..



Then just slowly jack the motor up & out



Out & free… sadly right now it’s sitting on a tire & not bolted to my engine stand as I didn’t have 4 bolts the right thread & length to attach it to the engine stand that I have… I’ll get some bolts today so I can put it on the stand & then I can start tearing it down..



I can see clearly now why even after new header gaskets there was always an annoying header leak… more of the exhaust ports where leaking than not.. the headers themselves where no longer flat..



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09-11-2014, 22:46   #104
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Next step was to remove the driver’s side header that runs through the steering… I opted to just cut the pipe open rather than unbolt the steering at this stage..





Now that the drive train is fully out I’ll take this opportunity to clean back the bay & check both front chassis rails for any rust as they are a known week point on these E bodies I’m told & they are the only sections of chassis that I haven’t been able to fully inspect yet..







Now there are a couple of tasks to be done in whilst the engine is out, so one of the first will be swapping the rear drum brakes for my new shiny Baer disks… so I’ve laid out all the parts & I reckon I’ll try & get an hour or so one night this week to do the swap… looks simple enough..


Last edited by Daved_XB; 09-11-2014 at 23:03.
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16-11-2014, 22:59   #105
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Just some updates from the weekend… this update may be a little pic heavy, so sorry if you’re on a slow interwebs connection..

When I pulled the engine out last weekend I didn’t have the right bolts to put it on my engine stand as the bolts that hold the transmission to the engine where too short & the long bolts that I had for the stand where for my ford & didn’t match the thread pattern, so the first thing I did was get the correct bolts & now the engine is on the stand & the crane is packed away again.. happy days.



This update is all about the Baer brake install so the first task was a very simple one… remove the master cylinder from the car as I’ll be replacing it anyway & this way it will limit the amount of brake fluid that will be able to run down the lines when I disconnect them as I swap out the old brakes.



As you would expect the next step was to pick an end to start at & jack it up & remove the wheels.. I opted to remove the old drum brakes first as I figured if I was going to run into issue that required any addition parts of part modifications it would most likely be at the rear with the drum to disk swap so I wanted to have as much time on the weekend to source bits if needed..



Now of course whenever you’re looking at bigger brakes you need to check that the wheels will fit on & not bind on the calipers.. so the first thing I did when I had the wheels off was to sit the new setup into the wheel to check said clearances.. so the rears have heaps of room as you’d expect as I’m running a 17” rim & they are only 11” rotors & 4 piston calipers..





Then I sat in the fronts which I figured should also be fine as the kit suggested that it fit all 17” rims & some 16” rims… & it’s fine on my 17”s but I’m not sure how it would fit any 16”s as the gap is pretty tight, if it fit a 16” I reckon you’d have a gap from the rim to the caliper that could be measured with a feeler gauge..





So once I knew that the wheels would go back on (never doubted it, but it’s a 20 second check) I decided to test assemble the rear kit to be 100% sure that I knew exactly how the backing plates, part shoe assembly, caliper brackets & the actual caliper all went together.. again I’d rather do this clean on the bench than learn that there is some weird way of assembly that needs to be conducted whilst covered in old brake dust & fluid, axle grease & diff oil





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