Saturday, February 26, 2011

Ed was definitely sick.

Well, I finally had some time to tune up the bug. I have neglected him for way to long and nothing was even close to being where it should of been. I have been putting off doing this because you have to adjust the valves and the points when the engine is cold. That prevented me from doing it after work because I drove it home and it would be warm. He started running so bad I had to do it today because he was definitely sick. He was running really bad when cold and got a little better when warm. I have all new spark plugs, wired, cap, rotor, and so I set out to adjust everything that needed it. That would include adjusting the valves, points, timing, and carburetor. I figured I would need to do the valves for sure but figured as I looked at the other stuff it would be on. Boy was I wrong.
I started the morning getting ready to do the valves. To do that you need to pull the valve covers and get the engine to top dead center on the #1 piston.                                                                                                
 There are 2 easy ways to tell if you are on TDC. The 1st way is to set your pulley on the 0 degree mark and pop off the distributor cap and make sure your rotor is pointing to the mark on the distributor housing. You have to be careful with this method if you are unfamiliar with your engine because it is possible to put your distributor in 180 degrees out and it will still work fine. The problem is that the rotor will be pointing opposite to your mark. Also it doesn't have to be dead on to the mark, in some cases it will just be close.
 Here are the valves on the right side of the engine. It is for #1 and 2 cylinders.
 The 2nd easy way to see if you are on TDC is to wiggle both the intake and exhaust valve for the cylinder that should be TDC. They should both wiggle a little bit. Here I am wiggling them. They are the 2 farthest ones away in the picture. At TDC you are able to adjust both intake and exhaust valves at the same time for that cylinder. (On a side note, if you are unfamiliar with your motor it is important to make sure you are exactly on TDC. You should then pull the spark plug for that cylinder and stick a drinking straw in the plug hole and rotate the engine. Doing this will tell you without a doubt that you are on TDC. The straw will not move up or down. When you are there check your pulley mark with the case half and remark it if necessary so when you adjust your valves in the future you will know where to go. While your at it mark your pulley exactly 180 degrees opposite and you will be set to do all your valves with these 2 marks.)
I checked my valves and they were really loose. They should be adjusted to .006 of an inch. It takes a set of feeler gauges, a flat screwdriver and a 13 MM wrench. Loosen the lock nuts on the valves and tighten the set screw until the .006 feeler gauge slides with just a little bit of resistance. The more you do it the easier it is to get the right feel down. When you have it set right tighten the lock nut and check it again to make sure it still feels good. I have found that if you adjust it perfectly and then tighten the set screw it will be a tad loose. I go a tiny bit tighter then tighten the set screw and it works out to be about perfect. This is where having 3 hands would come in handy. 4 if your trying to take a picture and adjust the valves at the same time.

 Now when you have the #1 cylinders valves adjusted crawl out from under the car turn the motor counter clockwise 180 degrees. ( that's why you made the 2nd mark) and you will be ready to adjust #2 cylinders valves. Rotate it CCW again so you are back at 0 degrees on your pulley and you can do #3's valves and rotate it once again 180 degrees and your set to do #4's. It's really that easy. If you take the time to get your marks set up, which I did when I had my engine out, it really is an easy job. You can very easily make your marks with the engine in also, it just takes a little more time and is a little tighter. Just make sure if your going to stick something down your spark plug hole to find TDC, it isn't going to be something that will brake off. That's why I use a drinking straw. Some people have used pencils and some people had to pull their head off to retrieve the other side of the pencil when it broke off inside. If you own an air cooled VW, you need to get use to adjusting valves or have the money to pay someone to do it because they need it quite frequently. Once you do it a couple times your a pro and can do it in 20 minutes or less.
 I finished the valves and moved on to the distributor and the points. My rotor and cap are pretty new and they looked to be in great shape so I added a drop of oil to the felt in the distributor shaft. That is right under where the rotor goes on. You should do that when you adjust or change the points if your distributor has the felt. If it doesn't, don't worry about it.
 My whole distributor was new when I put it in and I never did adjust the points. It ran so good I figured they were good. When I looked at them this time, the gap was way to small. Points for a VW should be adjusted to .016 of an inch. To do this you need a set of feeler gauges and a flat blade screwdriver. Rotate the engine so that the points are open to their widest setting. At this point you should be able to get a .016 feeler gauge in. If not adjust them. This will get you close and you will end up fine tuning them with a dwell meter later.
 Like I said, mine were way to tight so I adjusted them open with the feeler gauges.
 I set it at .016 and reinstalled the dust cover, rotor and cap.
 I hooked the dwell meter up and checked my dwell. I had to fine tune the points a couple of times to get the dwell perfect.
 You want 50 +/- 1 degree. The meter I have is for 6 and 8 cylinder so I have to go off the 8 cylinder scale and times it by 2. I am looking for 25 degrees. Right on the money. Most people nowadays don't even know what a dwell meter is yet alone own one. I have my Dad's which I am thankful he lent/gave me. If you own a VW, invest in one cause your gonna need it. You can also switch to read RPM's which you will need to do to adjust your carburetor.
 The next thing to do is to adjust your timing. Every VW has a different flywheel. Some people put on an aftermarket one that has all the degrees printed on it. I prefer a stock one for a couple reasons. One they are accurate for the most part. The aftermarket ones are a guess at best. In fact I would rather get a stock on and add my own significant marks on it. I had an aftermarket one on my first bug and it worked it's way loose. It in turn wallered out the keyway in the crank. This was a newly rebuilt engine and if I let it get worse it would of required a new crank. That's a lot of money. My advice is to stick with the stock pulley and mark it according to your needs. I ended up using some JB weld and a stock pulley and it worked at least as long as I remember the car being around. I got lucky. You will need to check with your setup as to what your timing should be. Mine is suppose to be 7.5 degrees before top dead center or BTDC at idle (850-900 RPM). I actually bump mine up to 10 degrees BTDC for a little extra performance. VW engines timing varies from 5 BTDC to 10 ATDC. If you have an 009 distributor, you time that at 3000 RPM to 30 degrees BTDC. Be aware of that and do some research for your particular setup.
Now mine was still running rough and idling badly so I adjusted the carb. I have a 34 pict 3 carb and they are adjusted different then every other carb out there. There are 2 screws that adjust this particular carb. One is the volume control screw and the other is the bypass screw. Start by turning in the volume control screw which is the smaller screw on the left side of the carb all the way in. Turn it out 2.1 turns. That will be where you start at. Start the engine and make sure it's warm then turn the bypass screw, which is the big one out or in until you reach 850 to 900 RPM. You really need a tach to do this, don't just do it by ear. Go back to the volume control screw and adjust it until you get the maximum RPM that you can. You then turn it in slowly until you lower the RPM by 20 -30. Return to the bypass screw and adjust your idle until you are once again at 850-900 RPM. You are then done. Recheck your timing one more and take it for a test spin. I have always been surprised by how much better my bug runs after an adjustment. I must let them go to long between so it is always highly noticeable. These are the things that take time and patience with a bug. They are definitely not a get in and drive for 100,000 miles before you even think about doing something like new cars are. Most of the time if I go 1000 miles and haven't done anything to mine I am doing pretty good. That turns most people off of old cars but for me, That's why I love them. I was thinking of driving my truck to St. George instead of the bug like I originally planned. After today it's running so good I am back to driving Ed down. It should at least be an adventure.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Finally a clean windshield!

Today I set out to install a 12 volt windshield washer system that I bought about 3 or 4 months ago. It is a universal one but should work good for the bug.                                                                                     
 Here is the reservoir. It's kinda small but so is the windshield and the trunk where it's going to get mounted.
 I had to remove the air inlet to get to the original washer outlet . I hooked up the hose to that and ran it over to where I was going to put the new one.
 This looked like a good place to install the reservoir. I hooked it onto the brake fluid reservoir. This way I didn't have to drill any holes for the mounting bracket.
 Here is where I installed the new switch. I hate to drill into the metal firewall but it is a small switch that isn't seen much. This will run the 12 volt pump for the fluid.
 I soldered on the wires to the back of the switch that will run the pump.
 Here the switch is installed and wired up. It fit nicely there and is out of the way of everything else.
 I filled up the tank and tested it to make sure it was going to work. I was able to wire it in nicely so you can't even tell it is added. I hate hack wiring jobs. That is one reason I love this bug so much. There was very little added or taken away from the original wiring. I have seen some really horrible wiring jobs in the past.
Here is the result. It will be nice to be able to clean the windshield when it gets dirty. The original system in a bug is actually pretty cool but there aren't many out there that still work. They are not electric, they run off the air pressure from the spare tire which is located in the trunk. I think they worked pretty good when they were new but they tend to leak all over your wiring and back of your radio when they get older. That is why I opted to get a 12 volt one. It is more reliable and is an easy install. Tomorrow, I need to tune up the engine and maybe I will get around to installing the pop out windows I have had for awhile. It's looking a little busy so I may not get to much done. We will see.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

The reason Ed (the bug) isn't going to be painted this year.

Well, It looks like Ed's going to go another year without being painted. We spent the money that we had stashed away on a new to us camp trailer. We always planned on getting another trailer to replace the one we sold but I had all but given up on finding the one I wanted. I had some very specific things I wanted in a trailer. I looked back at my blog and this is what I had listed as must haves for the trailer.

1. It has to have bunks in it for the boys.

2. It has to have a queen size bed that is set up all the time.

3. It has to have fiberglass sides.

4. It has to have absolutely NO WATER DAMAGE. Been there done that!

5. It has to have an outside shower.

6. It can't be any longer than 25 feet.

I really hadn't looked for awhile but a couple friends of mine had gone to the RV show and asked if I was still looking at getting a trailer. I mentioned I wasn't sure and decided to take a quick peek at This trailer had only been listed for a couple hours and it was exactly what I wanted. The price was great and in my price range so I decided to go look at it. I called and the trailer was only a couple of streets down the road from the house. I looked at it, made an offer and told him I would be back with my wife and some cash to hold it for us. Generally when I buy something I research it out and know exactly what I want. I have looked at trailers enough to know this was a good deal and it not only had everything I wanted but had many extras I only wished for.

As Paul Harvey says, Here is the rest of the story:

 Dixie and Isaac are showing their enthusiasm for the new trailer.
 Here is a picture of the whole trailer and Dixie and Isaac.
 It has bunks This was a definite must have on my list.
 It has triple bunks for all the boys! The bottom one is a little cramped for me though.
Here is the queen bed that is set up all the time. Another must have.
 As you can see it has fiberglass sides. # 3 on the must have list.
 Here is the kitchen. The previous owner just installed a brand new faucet because the other one had broken.
the sink looks brand new.
 This is looking forward in the trailer.
 Here is a wish list item. It has a microwave. I don't know why I wished for this because it won't run on the battery and we do a lot of  dry docking without a generator. But if we are plugged in we can have microwave popcorn!
 The bathroom is spotless and has plenty of room.
 It has a small bath with a seat in it. It will work great for Ellie and the boys but I won't fit.
 It came with this cool clock. That's an old Cadillac pulling an airstream. Pretty Cool!
 Here is # 5 on the must have list. It's an outside shower and I will definitely fit here. At least I can wash my hair off while camping.
A nice stereo with a tape and CD player. It has room for a TV but that must be provided by us.
 Here is a wish list item that I was thrilled to see. It is a power jack. Our old trailer had one and it would just suck to have to crank it up and down by hand, especially with the equalizer hitch that was included.
 here is the stove and oven. It looks like it has never been used. I couldn't even find a crumb or a mark where the paint was discolored by the heat.
 #6 on the list was it had to be less then 25 feet. This one measures in at 24 foot and the wish list came out also because it is an ultralight. It weighs less then our old one. It also is framed up with aluminum framing. A total bonus.
 Here is another bonus. It has an outside gas line for a propane stove that hooks onto the side of the trailer.
Here is the whole setup. I don't have the equalizer hooked up and my truck isn't squatting at all. It was total luck we came across this trailer. The boys and hopefully girls will like this trailer more then Ed getting painted and There is no water damage. So you can see that all the must haves were met and hopefully it will take our family on some great adventures for years to come. Now we just have to wait for the camping season to start!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

The super is back on the ground and running.

It hasn't been that long since I posted but I was able to get a ton done on the super. Here is the visual progress.

 For anyone who is repacking the wheel bearings on a late model bug here is a visual layout of the way it all goes together. The stub shaft is on top and from left to right goes like this. Inner spacer. ( you can tell you have the right one if it has a big taper on one end so it will fit on the taper of the stub shaft), the inner bearing.( It is the ball bearing and I think you can install it wrong so make sure it is right), The middle spacer, the outer bearing ( this one is a roller bearing), The part on the bearing is the inner race of the outer bearing, and last of all is the outer spacer. I am a visual learner so this is how I would learn for the first time.
 I put on the back tires and lowered it back to the ground and moved on to the front. I figured I would repack the wheel bearings so they would be done at the same time the rears are. Here I removed the front drum and outer bearing.
 I turned over the drum and removed the seal and the inner bearing. These bearings are impossible to mix up so don't worry about it. The only thing you need to do is do one side at a time because the bearings and the races are a matched set so you don't want to mix up right and left sides.
 This is the advantage of having a solvent tank in your garage. It is important to clean all the old grease out of your bearings and solvent works the best.
 Here is how you repack the bearings. In the picture you can see how grease is oozing out of the upper side. You just keep pressing the grease in until it comes out like that all the way around the circumference of the bearing.
 Here the bearing is installed with a new seal the drum is ready to be installed onto the axle.
 Drum installed and nut tightened and then backed off just a tad. Make sure you tighten the Allen bolt to lock the nut on. (remember the left side nut on the front axle has left handed threads)
 I also got back the tank form Dee. He installed a rivet where the hole had been and while it was out he decided to paint it. It looks awesome. Now I just have to install it.
 Here you can see where Dee put the rivet. It worked great and has no leaks in it .
 Here is where the fuel tank goes in the car. It looks as if the super was originally orange. it looks a lot better now with it's current paint job.
 Here is the tank installed. It was nice to fill it up with fuel and not here any dripping.
Here is the trunk as it currently sits right now. the spare tire is back in and the old parts that I replaced along the way are stacked in it. With the bright white it looks as clean as a hospital. I think you could eat off that tank.
 well, it was time to move on to the parking brake. When VW parking brakes get a little out of adjustment they have a habit of spilling their guts.
No I mean they literally spill their guts. All the insides of the handle pops out and goes on the floor. This shows what comes out of the handle. I had adjusted the rear brakes and then adjusted parking brake cables at the handle. You normally don't have to remove the whole handle but I wanted to grease it all up so it would be smooth. In this picture there is the locking device at the far left and then the handle, the push rod with spring and button attached to it.
 This is a close up of the rod and spring with the handle. This is what comes flying out.
 You can't really see it here but this is the inside of the handle with the rod installed and the pawl installed in the correct location. When your brakes are loose and there is to much movement of the handle the pawl is the part that comes out of where it should be and lets all the guts fly out.
 A picture of the handle with the ratchet segment and pawl all installed and working.
 Final install  of the handle in the car. The super could really use some new cables but they will be OK for awhile. It is still a little spongy but it works and I think the only fix would be new cables.
 I moved on to looking at the gas gauge that was inop. This is what I found. It is a connector that goes to the fuel vibrator. The vibrator is what keeps your gas gauge from bouncing around while your driving. As you can see it has gotten hot in the past. I installed the wire on to a new terminal and the next picture shows the result
 The gas gauge is working. It was cool to see and when I test drove it the speedometer worked great to. It was right on the money because I went past a sign that shows your speed and it was dead on.
 So, Paris (the super) passed a test drive and once again got kicked out of the garage. All it needs now is an alignment and I will give it back to Dee's daughter. It has been a ton of fun to work on even though I thought I was a dead man at one time when fuel was going everywhere. I may even consider buying a super in the future if the price was right.
  It's a good thing I have a long driveway. Paris is down at the end of the train right now. We picked up a new trailer but that will be discussed in a blog another day. This one is long enough and it's getting late.

Ed is back at home in his rightful place. I have neglected him the last few weeks and have a whole list of things to do on him. There will be plenty of stuff to blog about in the future. So stay tuned.