In the June 2015 issue of TTT 2 I mentioned that Norman Verona had contacted me to say that he had found the TTT 2 website and that he had registered his newly acquired TC on the T-Database. He promised that he would send regular updates of a total restoration which he intended carrying out himself. The first update was published in the August 2015 issue of TTT 2, the second in the October 2015 issue, and the third in the December 2015 issue. This is Norman’s fourth update and takes us up to the stage where he now has finished his engine rebuild.
Around the end of October I started on the engine rebuild. I had to get new pistons, as when the pistons were washed, deep scores at the crown were seen. They also had 2 pistons with broken rings, probably due to broken pistons.
The camshaft had seized in the block. Actually I think the oil on the bearings had dried out leaving a varnish which had stuck the shaft to the bearing. Lots of plus gas and 3 in 1 oil sorted it.
Seized camshaft bearing being soaked in ‘Plus Gas’ and ‘3 in 1’ oil.
Cleaned con-rods. I spent ages trying to clean a shadow.
Not sure what these numbers, stamped in the sump face of the block mean. Could be a manufacture date; 35th week of 1949? Anyone know?
The first piston, covered in graphite and ready to be put in.
I fitted the modified rear seal as supplied by Moss (not Moss Bros, they do suits)
Took time and the instructions are very long winded. However it wasn’t difficult.
I wonder if it will be oil tight?
The Moss oil seal conversion now fitted.
The bottom end buttoned up.
I couldn’t remember tightening the front plate bolt behind the camshaft timing wheel. So, I took the front cover off, undid the camshaft bolt holding the wheel to the cam and levered it forward enough to get a spanner behind. It was tight! Then I looked with the torch and saw I had my spanner on the camshaft holding plate bolt, so tried the front plate bolt, which was, indeed, loose. Duly tightened and feeling very smug I refitted the cam timing wheel and the front plate and carried on.
I fitted the pick up to the sump then started on the valve gear. I built the rockers on the new shaft and then fitted the head. Pulled the head down and fitted the rocker shaft, side cover on and then the sump.
After refitting the oil pump which also entailed removing the rusty ball and spring and fitting new ones, I took the engine off the bench.
The water pump and thermostat housing came next. Then I dropped one of the small cheese headed screws that hold the water elbow to the thermo housing. I spent 5 minutes looking for it then tried “sweeping” the floor with a magnet. OK, I know when to give up, so I called Lynne to find it. As I was showing her the other screw, she was stooping to pick up the “lost” one.
So, tonight the engine is almost complete and painted. I’ll touch it up tomorrow; painting the bits I missed and then clean the overpainting off the bits that shouldn’t have painted (rocker cover and brass unions). I have to clean the oil pipe union bolts then fit all the oil pipes. Then I’ll fit the manifolds, carbs, starter and dynamo.
Bought myself a present, two key fobs in the correct colour. The other fob is from the MG Club De France, nice isn’t it?
Getting there! The valve gear bit me in bum later on.
Nearly there, the fun is about to start.
The gearbox being stripped. My balls were fiddly but got it sorted. Balls? The balls and springs in the synchro hub which popped out and are very fiddly to get back in.
The rest of the internals. Anyone know how this lot goes back together?
Now the fun starts. I should have learned a lesson by now. I get very tired and my back aches a lot at the end of the working day, about 1700. I refitted the valve gear last thing at night and got it wrong. I put the spacers on top of the pillars instead of in between. This is the result:
All four were fractured. New ones are on the way from Roger Furneaux.
Whilst waiting for the new pillars I did the crackle black paint on the wiper motor.
I’d had a problem with the first attempt, My paint didn’t crackle. I was advised by TABC members that the surfaces needed to be hot. So I heated it all under 2000 w of arc lights. Still didn’t look right, I then turned the lights off thinking I’d have to get a different paint and lo and behold as it cooled it crackled. I’ve since painted the centre nut of the horn with chrome affect paint.
I finished the gearbox and painted the case.
All nice and shiny.
At this point I filled the sump and the filter and primed the pump. I’ve read some pretty drastic methods to prime TC pumps but all I did was to fill the pump with a pump type oil can through the hole for the pipe to the filter. I then “bleed” the system along each joint. However I couldn’t get oil coming from the splash holes in the rockers. I walked round to the filter side and noticed the top union to the head had broken. NTG sent one out and it arrived a few days later.
I fitted the new bolt, bled the union and had oil coming out but still no oil to the rockers. I had a suspicion and emailed Roger Furneaux to confirm. Yes the rocker shaft must be the correct way round as there’s only one oil hole. I took the shaft apart and turned it round, rebuilt it and refitted.
Still no oil but I then noticed that oil was seeping out the ends. I sheepishly retrieved the end plugs from the original shaft and hey presto, oil at the rockers.
It’s oil, it’s beautiful, it’s wonderful, it’s marvellous, I’m beginning to break into song.
I started to overhaul the fuel pump. The pump had a lot of sediment in the chamber. I blew it out and as it wouldn’t blow out I scraped it and then tapped it on the vice…
Oops, I broke it. A new electronic one is now lying on the floor waiting to be fitted.
So, we’ll leave this month’s entry with a picture of the fully assembled engine and gearbox.
We are now up to the 16th November (this is only my way of knowing where to start with next months). Next month I’ll explain what I’ve done with the hood and side screens.
If you visit www.frenchblat.com you can read about showers, massage chairs, JCB digging trenches, new furniture and a lot more about a TC.