Sunday, April 12, 2009

ICE is out

By my reckonning the are exactly 4 physical connections still holding the engine/transmission to the chassis:

- the wiring to the starter motor
- the 2 motor mounts, one on each side of the engine
- the blasted exhaust!

Having failed twice to disconnect the latter I decided that it was now time to approached it 'the other way' I mentioned in the previous post. A quick visit to the hardware store resulted in the acquisition of a reciprocating saw and 30 seconds later the downpipe was 'disconnected' just ahead of the cat :)

One down, three to go. The nut connecting the power to the starter motor is pretty inaccessible from either above or below ... but I can get a pair of wire cutters into the space at the rear of the engine ... and then there were two.

But before I forget, this is probably a good time to connect up some chains to the engine and take some of the weight off the motor mounts with the engine hoist. The car needs to come off the jack stands at this point too.

I returned to conventional means to get the motor mounts out - I'll probably reuse them anyway as part of the mount for the electric motor. First thing to do was to loosen (not remove!) the 3 bolts holding the mount to the engine on the driver's side (for reasons you'll see below). One of them is quite inaccessible, being behind the exhaust header but I managed to get a wrench in there.

The other two were easy enough, but there was a bracket still attached to the side of the engine compartment that looked like a knuckle buster. This seemed like a perfect chance to let my helper (going on 11 year old daughter) have a turn with the wrench to break the tedium of a lot of flashlight holding.

Now off come the bolts, one on each side, holding the motor mounts to the chassis.

I lifted the engine just a little more so that the hoist was taking all the weight and then removed the driver side motor mount altogether.

That allowed me to twist the engine and transmission to that side and release the back of the transmission from the torque arm where it had been resting. Now the engine was completely free of everything ... so why when I pull it forward does it not want to come out? Ah, ha! The cable bundle going back down the transmission tunnel goes on the 'wrong' side of the clutch line I left in place. Sorry for the fuzzy picture ... but a quick snip of the plastic wire tie holding the bundle to the engine allowed me to slip it over the clutch line and the engine was now really free.

Rather than just going with a chain to hoist the engine out, I invested in an engine leveler and it was well worth the additional $. If I had another person to help I'm sure it would have been possible to tilt the entire engine/transmission assembly enough to get it out ... but the leveler made doing so on my own a cinch. Here's the engine halfway out - you can see how far it needs to be tilted.

And a couple of minutes later ... the ICE is no more!

Here's another view.

And look at all the empty space (there is still some stuff to come out on the passenger side when the fuel system is removed).

I was tempted to call it a day at that, but I'd like to get the engine out of my garage and into it's new owner's hands quickly so time for a bit more disassembly. With the engine and transmission still in the air, off comes the starter motor.

Here you can see the flywheel teeth the starter motor turns to start the engine.

Now, off comes the clutch release cylinder - much easier to do when it's outside the car.

It is incredibly oily on the outside - I suspect a slow oil leak (especially since for the past couple of years there have been drips collecting under that car!).

Before I lowered the engine and transmission I removed some of the bolts that hold them together (the lowest ones that would be difficult to get to with the combined unit on the ground).

Then the final 2 bolts came out.

And with a bit of prying and a little lift from the hoist, the engine and transmission are separate.

Sheesh, there's a LOT of crud inside the bell housing ... more signs of that oil leak.

I need to get the flywheel off as that will be used during the conversion to connect the electric motor to the transmission using a clutch (you can apparently do this without a clutch ... but that's not for me!). So off comes the clutch pressure plate and clutch disk (underneath it - not shown). I will NOT be reusing the clutch - as with most engine/transmission maintenance - if you've gone to the trouble to remove either or both now is the time to replace the clutch. This one also has 78,500 miles on it ... it's the original.

That exposes the flywheel. Note the channel lock pliers I tried to use to hold the flywheel in place when removing the bolts holding the clutch in place ... I do NOT recommend you do that. The metal the flywheel is made of appears to be very soft - the pliers left deep gouges. I'm not worried about that myself as I plan on having this flywheel lightened and part of that will be to remove the ring of teeth used for the starter motor ... which obviously I won't need any more.

So that's it. Engine is out and ready to be picked up. Looks like I've got a lot of cleaning up to do on that transmission though.

Next up ... well I'm taking a break for the week. Next weekend I'll probably tackle removing the fuel system and clear that last vestiges of ICE from the car.

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