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My Austin 10 has packed up.
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norustplease



Joined: 11 Apr 2011
Posts: 563
Location: Lancashire

PostPosted: Tue Dec 03, 2013 10:35 pm    Post subject: My Austin 10 has packed up. Reply with quote

After a very enjoyable run on a rare sunny day recently, I parked on the drive and left the car whilst I did a bit of tidying up in the garage.
When I came to restart to put her away, , she fired, but ran like a rolling mill. I checked for loose cables, etc.to no avail, and then did the trick of pulling the plug leads off one by one, isolating no 4 as the culprit.
Removing the plug and cranking with it earthed, it sparked, but I noticed that it didn't seem to be wet with petrol. I also noticed that when I replaced it and cranked, there was a strange squishy sound through the carb at each stroke. I got out my comp tester.
Nothing. I tested no 1 to make sure that it was working and it popped straight up to 85, stone cold. Back to no 4, still no compression.
I deduce therefore that I have either a stuck valve, probably inlet from the sound or worse something along the lines of a holed piston. However there were no untoward noises on my drive and so the valve is favourite.
So my next move is to take off carb and manifold and open up the valve chest to see if anything is stuck open.
I will keep you all posted.
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1953 Citroen Traction
1964 Volvo PV544
1986 Renault 4
1990 Citroen 2CV
Boring Fiat 500X
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colwyn500



Joined: 21 Oct 2012
Posts: 1731
Location: Nairn, Scotland

PostPosted: Wed Dec 04, 2013 6:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I hate that valve cover. So low down and obscured by the manifold with such a fiddle to get the knurled screws back in.
I hope it sorts out easily. I have never had stuck valves even when laid up for ages but I do remember a broken spring once.
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norustplease



Joined: 11 Apr 2011
Posts: 563
Location: Lancashire

PostPosted: Thu Dec 05, 2013 9:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Not a stuck valve! I stripped off the manifold, etc. to get a good clear look at the valve chest. (This is what the handbook shows, but conveniently doesn't mention in the text). Everything seemed in order. I ran another comp test and this revealed that there was no comp in no 3 either. I had thought that I had isolated no 4 already as the culprit, but with hindsight, had thought that the running was lumpy even for three cylinders. I did the lot and had two with about 100psi and two with hardly anything at all.
This then said head gasket, probably a blow between the two, so I carried on and removed the head bolts and then put the plugs back in, in the na´ve hope that I could blow the head off its seating with whatever compression. I was rewarded with a puff of rusty dry vapour up the stud between 3 and 4, which rather confirmed my suspicions, and when I eventually, after a lot of plus gas down the studs, got the head off, this is what I found:



The detached segment was rotated so that one end was stuck under the no 4 inlet valve, wedging it open! Presumably the missing bits had been spat out of the exhaust valve at that point in the cycle. Fortunately the car hadn't been driven in this condition, otherwise heaven only knows what would have happened.
I haven't investigated the valves thoroughly yet, but the faces are rather pitted as is the combustion chamber although the mating faces of the block and head don't appear eroded or scarred and the valve seats appear reasonably okay. As an additional precaution, I am taking the head to be refaced tomorrow, and whilst it is gone, I will take out the valves and give them and the seats a good close look. My instinct is, however, to replace them. Hopefully a session with some coarse grinding paste should sort out the seating and the whole lot is obviously going to get a decoke.

I'll let you know how I get on.
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1953 Citroen Traction
1964 Volvo PV544
1986 Renault 4
1990 Citroen 2CV
Boring Fiat 500X
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colwyn500



Joined: 21 Oct 2012
Posts: 1731
Location: Nairn, Scotland

PostPosted: Thu Dec 05, 2013 11:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

On that engine I think that the condition of the studs and the threads tapped into the block are more relevant to gasket sealing than the face of the head. I would check the head nut threads haven't been stretched. It's a thick gasket and lively interface between head and block.
It's actually a well rehearsed topic of the Austin Ten Drivers'Club if you aren't already a member.
You're certainly not hsnging about with the repair. Great to hear..
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norustplease



Joined: 11 Apr 2011
Posts: 563
Location: Lancashire

PostPosted: Fri Dec 06, 2013 8:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, I am in ATDC, and have been reading up. The spares catalogue recommends 32ft lbs torque for the head, which was my main question.
In the meantime, I dropped off the head today. The firm has apparently another engine, never collected after being left with them several years ago, that they are looking to dispose of, which might be a useful investment for spares.
They have promised to dig it out for me on my return visit.
My thoughts are also on how far I should go with the current exercise. I also have a spare gearbox, which seems to have better bearings than the original.
That would mean taking most of the front of the car off. Now this might be a good thing and whilst I am at it I would change the clutch whilst I could get at it......and so on and so forth.
Appealing as this is, it means that suddenly I have two projects and nothing to drive! Past experience says that doing extensive work on two cars simultaneously is a tall order, and often results neither getting sorted properly. So I will probably treat this as a repair for the moment, and leave the box for another day.
More immediately, I need a decoke gasket set and a couple of valves.
Thanks for the comments, I will spend the weekend having a tidy up around the block and engine bay, and thinking about the gearbox.
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1964 Volvo PV544
1986 Renault 4
1990 Citroen 2CV
Boring Fiat 500X
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norustplease



Joined: 11 Apr 2011
Posts: 563
Location: Lancashire

PostPosted: Wed Dec 11, 2013 4:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just collected the skimmed head. The verdict from the machine shop was that it was warped.
Alas their Austin 10 engine has proved to be from a 7. If anyone wants it as a source of spares or as core material for reconditioning, send me a message and I will put you in touch.

Next step is to paint the head and block the correct colour, which appears to be black, and then as soon as my spares arrive, to reassemble.
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1953 Citroen Traction
1964 Volvo PV544
1986 Renault 4
1990 Citroen 2CV
Boring Fiat 500X
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norustplease



Joined: 11 Apr 2011
Posts: 563
Location: Lancashire

PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2014 10:43 pm    Post subject: Not a Happy New Year! Reply with quote

Well I got it all back together, between Christmas and New Year and after cranking up the oil pressure, switched on and tried a startup....not much happened.
I checked the fuel supply, which was fine, looking at the float chamber, which was full and then tried a sparking plug earthed to the block. The spark was very poor and none existent after a couple more cranks.
I coupled up the charger and cleaned everything up, but to no avail. The car remained dead. I tried a squirt of starter fluid down the carb intake, but that didn't even produce a chuff, so I conclude that the ignition is u/s. I had noticed when checking for the original misfire in November, that the spark was not much cop and so I suspect that this is the likely culprit.
At this point I was flagging slightly and decided to go and do something else for a while. It has hardly been good 30's car driving weather and so I wasn't too upset at being grounded, albeit I missed my traditional New Year's Day foray.
So what next
The Boyer Bransden ignition unit is an obvious suspect as must be the rather elderly coil., so my first essay will be to disconnect the electronic module and reinstate the condenser and original connections and see if that gets that on the road. Failing that, it will have to be a new coil.

I'll keep you posted.
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1953 Citroen Traction
1964 Volvo PV544
1986 Renault 4
1990 Citroen 2CV
Boring Fiat 500X


Last edited by norustplease on Thu Jan 09, 2014 9:50 pm; edited 1 time in total
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kevin2306



Joined: 01 Jul 2013
Posts: 1331
Location: nr Llangollen, north wales

PostPosted: Thu Jan 09, 2014 9:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think you are correct in looking at the coil first, may be an ideal point in time for a revamp of the Ht leads and plugs? Rotor Arm?
From my experience (mainly with classic bikes) the boyer units are bomb proof if treated correctly.

Good luck and hope you get back up and running soon

Kev
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colwyn500



Joined: 21 Oct 2012
Posts: 1731
Location: Nairn, Scotland

PostPosted: Thu Jan 09, 2014 11:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good luck with that. I was similarly baffled a few years ago when re-commissioning my Ten. However, with persistence I got it started on the handle without replacing anything although the signs were as you describe. I re-faced the points and cleaned them and the distributor-cap etc in thinners. I thoroughly cleaned the plugs and re-gapped and then took the blowtorch to them. Burnt fingers and cursing ensued with an immediate firing into life.
I completely agree with Kev and think you are doing the right thing, but sometimes when you change too much at once and still nothing happens, you start to get frustrated.
What I am saying is , it may just be a combination on things as less than the optimum and any car can be a pig after major cylinder head and valve work in any case.
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colwyn500



Joined: 21 Oct 2012
Posts: 1731
Location: Nairn, Scotland

PostPosted: Sat Jan 11, 2014 10:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Postscript to that. I had the car going last Monday re-organising the garage. A cold, damp day today and it wasn't for going. Three minutes running the blowtorch over the base of the plugs in situ and on the top of the manifold and away we go. Very Happy
Extinguisher at the ready at all times of course.
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norustplease



Joined: 11 Apr 2011
Posts: 563
Location: Lancashire

PostPosted: Mon Jan 13, 2014 9:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I remember my dad, on a regular basis in the winter with one of his cars, cooking the plugs in the grille pan under the 'high level grill ' on the cooker, whilst he ate his breakfast cornflakes, prior to re-inserting them for a quick getaway.
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1953 Citroen Traction
1964 Volvo PV544
1986 Renault 4
1990 Citroen 2CV
Boring Fiat 500X
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norustplease



Joined: 11 Apr 2011
Posts: 563
Location: Lancashire

PostPosted: Sat Jan 25, 2014 10:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Finally took the time to have another go at my old Austin.
I'd found my spark tester and borrowed a mains battery booster, and after some cleaning of contacts proved to be generating a healthy spark.
I turned my attention to the carburettor, took off the float chamber and blew through al off the jets and tried agin. No avail.
Now I have a spare carburettor, but with a rather worn throttle spindle, and after a few minutes thought, I swapped float chambers, and fired her up agin. After a few stammering starts, and a smoke screen as it burned off all the oil in the cylinders, it started and ran properly.
Tomorrow's job is to put the bonnet back on and reassemble the seats ( batteries under front seats).
Thanks for your comments.
I suspect also that the starter button on the dash is dodgy as well, but hopefully, when we get some suitable weather again, I will have something to drive, and can work on the Volvo without feeling guilty about the Cambridge.
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1964 Volvo PV544
1986 Renault 4
1990 Citroen 2CV
Boring Fiat 500X
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