I did quite a bit of phoning around on Monday. Lots of things to sort out and only one weekend to sort them out if I don’t want to miss Cadwell:
- Clutch slave cylinder needs replacing along with hose and master cylinder.
- Engine needs to come out to swap alternator rotor over, switch to 2007 throttle bodies and change loom to incorporate electrics and ECU from 2007 loom.
- Need to change fuel pump as old one is integrated into throttle bodies, later one is in bike tank.
- I spoke to Phil Alcock about his airbox at the weekend and it turns out there’s a spare one lurking about currently in the possession of Josh/Darcy Smith. This is to improve performance as well as reduce noise levels as I suspect the reason I’m struggling is induction noise.
I first of all spoke to Darcy as I thought he might have useful advice on both the clutch and fuel pump stuff – he runs a Hayabusa engined Radical and is a professional mechanic/engineer. He was very helpful and gave me a few pointers, I also arranged to pop over to him to pick up the air box.
I spoke to Jack Frost at Holeshot Racing but he uses a separate pump and pressure regulator and this works out at about £300. It’s really aimed at turbo applications and is overkill for my car. It does avoid the issue of fitting a pump inside the tank so I didn’t discard it completely as an option.
I spoke to Powertec who agreed the clutch slave seal was the likeliest culprit. I ordered a new one at £8 along with a whole new slave at £100. They said I can send that back if I don’t need it but frankly after this weekend I’m beginning to see the merits in having at least two of everything!
I also spoke to Andy Bates for a quick discussion on the fuel pump issue. One cunning plan that emerged from that discussion was the possibility of fitting the bike fuel pump inside my existing swirl pot which has the huge attraction of changing none of my existing plumbing! He also suggested something that had crossed my mind – that I check my cat! This may well be the explanation for the misfire. Apparently Rob Grant’s started to fail yesterday.
Having decided to go with a bike pump I had a search around eBay then rang Malc Curnin at Yorkshire engines. He offered me a GSXR fuel pump at £55 delivered which was a better deal than I could find on eBay so I went for that.
After unpacking the tools and stuff from the motorhome I made a start on the car. First job was to have a look at the cat – I was actually hoping it would be a mess as it would mean the engine could stay as it is, but it looked pristine. Not so the packing though – the fibreglass matting adjacent to the cat had clearly got very hot and had melted and turned into glass that tickled as it fell on the garage floor. Further forward in the can (the cat’s at the tail end) the packing had been nowhere near the perforated tube, being just a thin looking layer around the outside of the silencer. No wonder the noise testing was touch and go. I lent Derek my box of packing on Saturday so I’ll need to order some more.
I made a start on the engine by getting the sausage filter off, disconnecting all the fuel injection wiring and hoses and lifting the throttle bodies off the manifold. Getting the engine out’s a bit of a pain but it was going to have to be done at some stage anyway, at least I’ve got along weekend ahead to crack on with it.
Tuesday morning I made a start on the loom, identifying and labelling each spur on it, the new clutch slave cylinder and spare seal arrived from Radical/Powertec. During the day I did some ordering from Demon Tweeks, Rally Design and Merlin Motorsport trying to get as many bits in as I can before the weekend. I also called into JT’s Motorcycles to get a seal for the fuel pump (a shocking £18!), a set of spark plugs and an oil filter stub to use as an extractor for the alternator rotor (don’t ask – even more shocking than the seal, and I have a feeling it’s just an M18 bolt I need).
I rang the 750 Motor Club and spoke to Robin Knight who is happy to let me wait till next Tuesday to withdraw my entry if needs be which makes life easier. Otherwise I’d need to cancel now to guarantee getting my money back but take the risk of not getting in if I subsequently find the car’s OK for then. He currently has 25 entries with a maximum field of 28 cars.
It was almost 8pm by the time I got out to the garage to continue preparations for getting the engine out. I removed the bonnet completely to improve access and then was pleased to get the coolant out without spilling any Off with the exhaust manifold, then drained the oil and undid the dry sump hoses, again managing to avoid making a mess. The engine’s almost ready to come out now, just need to disconnect the prop and gear linkage and the last couple of bits of wiring loom. I think I’m starting to feel a little more confident of making it to Lincolnshire in 10 days time
On Wednesday the engine came out. I slipped the alternator cover off to find that the thread in the rotor isn’t M18. As a quick reminder, to make a 2007 engine work on a 1999 loom/ECU/throttle bodies you fit the alternator rotor from the 1999 engine, which has a different number of ‘teeth’ as crankshaft sensor pickups. I pulled the oil filter off to see if I could remove the threaded spigot it’s screwed onto but there was no obvious way of getting it out (Jack Frost had said he uses the spigot from an R1). I scratched my head for a while, tried fitting a 3 legged puller onto it to no avail. I was about to give up and wait till I could get something to screw in as an extractor but decided to have al go at just levering it off with a pair of screwdrivers. Being careful not to damage the crankcase mating surface I put a bit of pressure on it, gave it a couple of taps with the rubber hammer and it popped off! The 2007 rotor (which Andy and I had installed into the 1999 engine for safe keeping) also came off easily so I was in business.
I removed the clutch slave cylinder and found that the new one is slightly different. This meant I had to cut down the aluminium spacer bushes. The whole job was dramatically easier with the engine on the floor – it’s a busy area with the clutch slave, dry sump scavenge pump and gearbox output flange/propshaft all bunched tightly together. With the bolts torqued up I clambered into the engine bay and started sorting out the loom. This was a bit of a pain, installing the ECU between the scuttle and the dash is nice and neat but compromises the wiring as the loom only just reaches. I’d also integrated stuff like the oil temp sensor wires into it, so I needed to un-integrate a few wires and ran out of time.
I’m off tomorrow (but working overnight instead) so I’ve now got 5 days to get the car sorted. So long as the fuel pump arrives and I can get that fitted into my swirl pot I should be OK.