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Thread: Sorting out Olivia - S3 re-do

  1. #121
    Privileged Member seekingserenity's Avatar
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    Default Re: Sorting out Olivia - S3 re-do

    The timing is sorted. I found me a Rover engine specialist! And with a bit of a fiddle here and there, Olivia's Vooma is coming back a little. I looked and looked, but I still couldn't quite figure out how he did the timing. I'll leave that one to the experts for now.

    I'm still looking around for parts for the distributor and choke cable, but those should go in within the week.

    I topped up the gearbox oil (something in there that I need to look at... more on that another day), and while I was under the truck conditioning my hair with EP90, I started to wonder about hubs and axles and grease. The ride's a bit rougher than it probably should be, and I admit I haven't had a look at those bits since I bought her in August. I guess that's going to be my next learning curve! She came with a grease-gun and oily/greasy stuff in containers, so I'm sorted for equipment on this one.

    Meantime the to-do list continues. I've finally got cage nuts and bolts, am cutting out rubber bits for shims, and hopefully this weekend will sort out the doors. At the same time I need to get the rustproofing in the bulkhead sorted out before the hinges go back on.

    That's the nice thing about owning a Landy. You never run out of things to do!
    Michelle - Owned by "Olivia" - a 1976 Series III 2.6 (all butched up!)
    "No Land Rover, no kiss."



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  2. #122
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    Default Re: Sorting out Olivia - S3 re-do

    and while I was under the truck conditioning my hair with EP90, I started to wonder about hubs and axles and grease.
    <stifled chuckle..

    if ye think gear oil's clarty stuff... wait till yer wearin a few dollops o prop shaft UJ grease... loooooooovely stuff...

    an yea... I do know how it can mess with yer hair; my lair's about twice as long as yours...

    I started to wonder about hubs and axles and grease.
    If you're gonna open up the hubs for a looksee, make sure you get new hub nut lock washers BEFORE you start the job... they need to be replaced each time you re-torque the lock nuts. Straight forward job (but wayyyy clarty)... only dodgy bit was finding the right spanner or socket to suit the Whitworth headed hub bolts...

  3. #123
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    Default Re: Sorting out Olivia - S3 re-do

    Thanks Mike - will do. But not today...

    Today was "remove rest of storage" day. Bvudzi pointed out that I'm travelling illegally - I don't have a back numberplate light! Then again, I don't have reverse lights either. But anyhow, one thing at a time.

    I stopped by Autozone and picked up a unit today after checking out how it was going to fit in yesterday. I had suspected the fuel tank was in the way - fortunately I was wrong. It's just wheel arch behind there, but to get at it the storage needed to come out.

    It's taken me about 2 hours. It's all wood and was connected with screws and hex-headed bolts/nuts, metal pieces and such. But it's out.

    I've also taken off the second wheel-hub winch unit, thanks to finally acquiring the right size socket to fit on my power bar.

    Unfortunately the rain has just arrived (and I've kinda injured myself), so the numberplate light will have to wait for another day.
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    Michelle - Owned by "Olivia" - a 1976 Series III 2.6 (all butched up!)
    "No Land Rover, no kiss."



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  4. #124
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    Default Re: Sorting out Olivia - S3 re-do

    and I've kinda injured myself
    nothing serious I hope..??

  5. #125
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    Default Re: Sorting out Olivia - S3 re-do

    Nah, just a leg that doesn't take kindly to walking, but nothing's broken. (though I thought it was last night)

    New challenge this morning. As I turned on the battery (connection key before ignition) something blew up in a puff of ozone-smelling smoke in the engine bay. Could be solenoid or starter motor, the former got a dose of water when I opened the bonnet. Not even a click from the engine if I turn the key.

    Will think about that later though - got a heck of a day ahead at work and don't have spare brain power available just yet.
    Michelle - Owned by "Olivia" - a 1976 Series III 2.6 (all butched up!)
    "No Land Rover, no kiss."



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  6. #126
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    Default Re: Sorting out Olivia - S3 re-do

    Glad you're OK.

    Do you have power to anything else with the battery connected, like lights or horn? What about ignition circuits? Are they still live with the key turned to the normal running position, or are they dead?

    If you've lost everything, it must be the battery, the isolator switch you mentioned, or a connection on the main circuit (usually the earth, but not always). If the lights work, but none of the ignition circuits activate with the key, then I's suspect the ignition switch or its feed. If the ign circuits are live when the key is turned, but you get no power to the starter motor, check the solenoid (normally attached to the battery tray).

  7. #127
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    Default Re: Sorting out Olivia - S3 re-do

    Snagger, I'll test all that once I get home from work - but what I have is this:

    The battery is on a "key" system. Before you can do a thing, you turn on the battery using a red plastic key, then stick in the ignition key and turn that. (see pics)

    It was when I turned on the battery that something blew. I turned the ignition and got the charge and oil lights - but not a sound, and no reaction from the engine. From where the smoke was coming from, it looks like the part of the 2.6 engine where the solenoid is. I had lifted the bonnet to turn the heater tap, water ran down off it to that area.. may have shorted something out. I have a spare solenoid, but know waaaaay too little about electrics.

    I'm hoping to be home before dark, or my job's going to be a whole lot harder!
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    Michelle - Owned by "Olivia" - a 1976 Series III 2.6 (all butched up!)
    "No Land Rover, no kiss."



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  8. #128
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    Default Re: Sorting out Olivia - S3 re-do

    HOkay.... I've found what blew up. Earth cable to the starter solenoid - though it may be hard to make out 'cos I got home in the dark and had to take this by torch-light. That's the Main Issue it appears - that's the area the smoke came from and the Big Bang. Whether it was a ripple effect remains to be seen.

    If you can't make out the pic, that particular piece of enginry is attached to the side of the battery support. Cable that blew up goes back to the bulkhead.

    So now I need some collective wisdom please. If it is just the earth cable, do I need to replace the thing or can I snip and re-attach? (I'm guessing replace). What else is that likely to have damaged? Ignition coil? I hadn't switched anything off - it just shorted when the battery connected.
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    Michelle - Owned by "Olivia" - a 1976 Series III 2.6 (all butched up!)
    "No Land Rover, no kiss."



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  9. #129
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    Default Re: Sorting out Olivia - S3 re-do

    The solenoid should not have an earth cable, only a heavy positive feed from the battery. The solenoid "earths" into the starter motor, which in turn earths to the flywheel housing. The current then passes through an earth strap (usually braided, attached at one end to the engine block and to the chassis at the other), the chassis, and finally to the battery via an earth cable attached from the chassis to the battery -ve terminal.

    The red key is a battery isolator. It has two copper domed contacts inside (the ends of each bolt that the wires connect to on the back side). Inside the barrel of the unit is a plastic plunger which presses down on a copper bar. This bar, when pressed in far enough, makes a bridge across the two contacts. The bridge is spring loaded to "open". Inserting the key and turning engages the key on a bayonette catch (like a light bulb) to hold the bridge closed. You have two of these fitted - make sure you know what is attached to each.

    The cable in the photo has been severely overloaded to melt like that and must be replaced outright. A garage should be able to make one up for you for very little cost (probably free, if you smile nicely enough). The concern is what caused it to overload. You may have a short in the solenoid or starter motor.

  10. #130
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    Default Re: Sorting out Olivia - S3 re-do

    Thanks Snagger. I'm hoping I got the right name for the right bit in what ails her! For all I know I've identified it wrongly and it's something entirely different...

    It's strange that there's been no noticeable issues leading up to this (ok, don't count the ones with distributor and spark plugs, hmmm - perhaps there are issues afer all). It just kinda overloaded and exploded one-shot. I suspect there was a short (water related) that caused it, given the build-up to the blow-up. Where, is the problem. What I do know is that the connections on the solenoid are old. The plastic looks perished, and it's likely the wiring is dodgy too. I know the HT leads need replacing, so a lot of other bits likely do too. This poor truck's been up Africa and back, so anything's possible.

    The two keys are for either battery. The second battery is currently out of the truck, so that isolator goes nowhere. The nearest-to-ignition goes to the engine bay battery to keep things ticking over (and doesn't supply anything else except that) - but I think I need to follow some leads when it's light enough tomorrow.

    I'd dearly love to have the time, cash and (large covered) space to sort this engine out from one side to another without it being a rolling restoration!
    Michelle - Owned by "Olivia" - a 1976 Series III 2.6 (all butched up!)
    "No Land Rover, no kiss."



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  11. #131
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    Default Re: Sorting out Olivia - S3 re-do

    A dirty contact can overheat rapidly as the current is all going through one point instead of being spread over a larger surface area. That one small contact point then acts like a bulb filament and heats up. As it heats, its resistance increases, so more poor areas will stop conducting and the voltage is concentrated on an even smaller area... It could have been caused by something as simple as a corroded terminal.

    Take the wires off and clean the terminals with emery paper or wire wool, and smear them liberally in vaseline before refitting. Make sure the solenoid and isolator studs are clean and try to find some new nuts to ensure good conductivity. Take a very close look at the solenoid before starting it up - the heat that went into the cable will also have gone into the solenoid, and could have damaged it.

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    Default Re: Sorting out Olivia - S3 re-do

    Nickís right with his description of whatís going on with the power side of your starter circuit... the problem is that if your ignition switch was off when the BANG happened, neither the solenoid nor the starting motor could be at fault; they werenít in the circuit at the time and itís highly improbable that the solenoid would fail in the energised position at the same time as the starter motor develops a short... I reckon thereís more going on there than first appears...

    Start with the simple stuff...

    You said that following the BANG, you tried both ignition on and engine start.... silence in both instances although you got ignition lights... you shoulda heard the characteristic tick tick tick of the fuel pump at ignition on... and the heavy KLUNK of the starter solenoid closing at engine start. Something way wrong going on there. Now it COULD be that someoneís played musical chairs with the wiring, and moved the solenoid and fuel pump feeds to a fuse protected terminal... if thatís the case, a blown fuse should indicate where the fault is... N.B. simply replacing the fuse WONíT heal the fault... itíll only blow if thereís a short downstream of the fuse... you need to find and fix that fault first.

    According to the circuit, (now, bear in mind that itís not uncommon for the circuit as drawn to bear absolutely NO relation to the wiring you have... shoddy build and previous owners happen..) the starter solenoid is fed directly from the engine start contact of the ignition switch; no inline fuses. Similarly, your fuel pump (it says ere) has its feed piggy-backed off the feed to the low tension side of the coil. The one area that both these faults have in common is your fuse box although they should be at opposite ends of the box; the starter solenoid sees its power through the ignition switch via the battery live commoning point (a bunch of crimps all stuffed into the same set of contacts), while the fuel pump and coil see their feed via the ignition live commoning point in the fuse box.

    I have a hunch that you have a short in the wire itself, the one that blew that is... the concussion from the BANG could well have shifted it away from where itís shorting, but it should be pretty obvious if it is failed insulation thatís caused the fault.

    One last point... the state of the connections on your starter solenoid could be partially to blame for your starting / battery charging issues. Nothing wrong there that canna be put right with a small wire brush, some elbow grease and a smear of vascilene prior to their reconnection. If ya strip down one terminal stud at a time, ye canna get mixed up over which wire should go where.

    I know I know... one more job to add to the To Do list..

    Relieved to hear yer legís gonna be fine... what the hell didja do to it anyway...??

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    Default Re: Sorting out Olivia - S3 re-do

    The good news is: with daylight on my side I spotted the problem within 3 seconds. The engine now turns over. I also spotted a lot of melted wires. (see first 2 pics)

    The bad news is: I'm an absolute idiot who should not be let loose near any Landy.

    Yes, there was a short of Gigantic Magnitude. And it's my fault. Can you spot the problem in the third pic below?

    Cleaning out the back of all bits yesterday, I left the spare battery's connections lying on the floor. They of course connect via the starter coil to the two battery-on keys and thus the engine bay battery.... The floor is metal. The key made a connection and closed the circuit. Boom. Or sizzle & smoke. Easily reproduced - this time with no ignition lights or even the smallest noise, just to emphasize things.

    Kicking myself mightily.

    But anyway - I'm going to let the boss know I'll be in late tomorrow, go get replacement cables for the connections once the relevant shops open, take out the damn second battery leads until rewiring time... and I should be on the road again. I'll also make sure nothing else suffered from my blonde attack before I attempt the commute.

    Thanks for all the advice! If anything else goes bang I'll have lots of info to go on...

    Off to quietly bang my head against a wall.
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    Michelle - Owned by "Olivia" - a 1976 Series III 2.6 (all butched up!)
    "No Land Rover, no kiss."



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  14. #134
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    Default Re: Sorting out Olivia - S3 re-do

    OOPS it's not so bad I left the positive cable lying on the exhaust once it took ten minutes to melt through the insulation before it shorted and enveloped the cab with plastic smoke killing the battery and nearly myself as I was driving at the time.



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    Default Re: Sorting out Olivia - S3 re-do

    I'll also make sure nothing else suffered from my blonde attack before I attempt the commute.
    I wouldn't be so quick to beat yourself up about this kinda thing... it's always a danger when you inheret someone elses modifications, especially when they aren't documented... personally I would have automatically assumed that if the main battery is connected via an isolator, the 2nd one would be too... keeping the 2nd switch in the off position should keep the supply side wiring completely isolated from anything else...

    evidently that's not the case here...

    still... relieved to hear it's something basic though I reckon I could sell tickets to watch the required repair position in action for this job

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