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Robert Weber

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Everything posted by Robert Weber

  1. I checked with Alunox a few times, and the only offering they had was the larger charge cooler offered at a substantial price lift over the previous group buy...actually, nearly double! No mention was made of offering a unit closer in spec to our OEM charge coolers. My concern over the larger unit was the need to modify the engine cover. Oh well....
  2. After months of search, and 2 gracious offers of chargecoolers that proved to have the very same leakage issue as does my OE unit, I've landed one via Geoff at Esprit Engineering In Wilshire! It was removed years ago from a virtually new S4s. It's really hard to imagine that a piece this critical to the operation of our cars is just no longer available....anywhere! I spoke with Jay at JAE and they have one which they paid a tidy sum for it. Our only option is aftermarket. My suspicion is that I'm not alone with this issue. If you are topping-up your chargecooler overflow tank, you likely have a leaking chargecooler. I tried contacting Behr on the availability of cores for refabricated coolers, but received no answer. Bob
  3. Thanks, Chris! I'll stand by. However, I did speak with Pete at PNM today. We spoke at length which is a first with the normally busy Pete. Turns out that in recent weeks, he underwent the removal of a few gall stones, and subsequently the removal of his gall bladder. I caught him at the office sequestered at his desk chair under strict orders to not do any work....thus, our speaking at length. He hopes/intends to be back in the flow within a week, at which time he'll address the chargecooler refit. Fingers are crossed. So, Chris, in the event that Pete doesn't come through, I'm atop your list. Bob
  4. Heard from Alistair today, and as it turns-out, his chargecooler had the same issue. Alistair was kind enough to have the unit pressure tested, and there was leakage into the intake side of the chargecooler. It makes me wonder how many other chargecooled cars have the same issue and owners are unaware of it? Monitor your chargecooler coolant reservoir carefully and if you are refilling it periodically, you likely have a leaker. I'm awaiting word from Pete at PNM as they are able to rebuild/re-core the OEM chargecooler. There's a bit of a delay on new cores, but if this does not work-out, I will abandon my intent to remain as OE and go to an Alunox chargecooler (if they are still available). The truly bad news is that the Esprit has sat for the past 2 months in the garage.... Bob
  5. That is exactly the issue, Filip. Owners with used chargecoolers sought 480 pounds for their unit and there was no telling if they had the same issue. I have just sent my chargecooler to Pete at PNM Engineering for a rebuild. Here's his note to me: Hi Bob, This is not an uncommon problem, it’s due to corrosion caused when there is insufficient water in the cooler and the water / air interaction corrodes the insides. This is mainly when cars are left standing for long periods when the levels are not topped up. We can replace the charge cooler element if you send us your old unit. Thanks, Pete PNM
  6. Improbably, the intercooler on my '94 S4 is leaking. I'm told by many who know better that this just never happens, but I've discovered coolant inside the plenum of my car (along with drippings on the side of the block). The coolant manifests itself under higher rpm's and boost, so my suspicion was that as the pump increases speed/flow/pressure....leakage occurs. Sure enough, upon removing the chargecooler, filling the 'intake' side with water and applying air pressure to the 'coolant' side of the chargecooler, bubbles appeared. There's no repairing these chargecoolers from what I understand. I am in need of an OEM chargecooler in the event someone has one or knows where to source one. Seeking to keep the car original, I'm really not interested in an aftermarket unit unless I have no choice. Goodness, there must be a Lotus salvage yard in the UK with a few of these laying on a shelf? Thanks in advance for your help. Best, Bob
  7. Improbably, the intercooler on my '94 S4 is leaking. I'm told by many who know better that this just never happens, but I've discovered coolant inside the plenum of my car (along with drippings on the side of the block). The coolant manifests itself under higher rpm's and boost, so my suspicion was that as the pump increases speed/flow/pressure....leakage occurs. Sure enough, upon removing the chargecooler, filling the 'intake' side with water and applying air pressure to the 'coolant' side of the chargecooler, bubbles appeared. There's no repairing these chargecoolers from what I understand. I am in need of an OEM chargecooler in the event someone has one or knows where to source one. Seeking to keep the car original, I'm really not interested in an aftermarket unit unless I have no choice. Thanks in advance for your help. Best, Bob
  8. I've learned that SJS sells a reproduction piece and the hardware.
  9. I do not see the listing for the deflector. Has it been sold? If so, where does one go to find another as my S4 car is missing the deflector. Thanks! Bob
  10. $144 US Dollars from JAE. Also replaced the flat washer while I was in there. All in all, though I'm not happy that this happened and added to all the work already done, I'm thrilled that I caught this early-on and avoided a catastrophic failure, not to mention the learning that servicing the timing and accessory belts can be done with the engine in place. Not so sure that I'd try a water pump replacement in-situ, but lifting the engine/transaxle (with the correct equipment) is also a very doable task.
  11. The new parts arrived from JAE and I set out to replace the sprocket from under the car. Travis' help was fantastic and he helped talk me off the ledge to the point that (now with the major service performed on the car) future cam belt changes can, indeed, be down in-situ. I'm nearly finished and it's gone surprisingly well. Here's a couple of photos of the crankshaft sprocket, and you will note not only the fractured tooth but a crack clear-through the sprocket. This was a time bomb in the making. Others in the States seem to be seeing this occurrence on S4 cars, so changing the sprocket would seem to be a compulsory action when replacing the timing belt, or (at least) a very careful examination or crack testing. Thank you to all who offered advice and counsel! Cheers, Bob
  12. While referencing PNM, I also upgraded my braking system with their 4-pot caliper and slotted rotor kit. Spax shocks were installed at the same time.
  13. Thank you, Jeremy! A few more shots.... All of which is why I hesitated when it came to the Alunox....
  14. I debated doing that, Barry, but I'd read enough on this forum about fitment issues that I wasn't willing to take the risk. Besides, I already was going for broke, as pointed-out by the wife!
  15. Another of the engine being lifted back into place.... My major service included the following. The car has 25,000 miles on it, but the last recorded belt service was 2011 according to records that accompanied the car. Gates blue timing belt Green dot cam sprockets rebuilt water pump replaced tensioner bearing front and rear main seal replacement reseal of the oil sump rebuilt/blueprinted turbo with 360 degree thrust bearing PNM turbo wastegate actuator RC injector upgrade S4s ECU reflash JAE silicone coolant hose replacement exhaust manifold refinish with Eastwood stainless steel finish and new french locks/copper nuts valve lash check replaced axle shaft seals rebuilt shift translator stainless steel braided clutch hydraulic line new fuel filter and K&N air filter PMN cat bypass downpipe, dual outlet exhaust and correct underwing .....I only wish that I had replaced the crankshaft pulley !!!
  16. Thanks, Jeremy. The flat washer has some ripples in it from pulling on it to remove the puller when I did the front main seal. The puller got the pulley out just enough to get a gear puller's fingers behind the washer where I could exert some force and remove the pulley. That pulley had no intention of being removed without some owner stress. However, I believe that the flat washer is simply a guide to ensure that the belt does not walk back towards the engine. I am hearing that cracked crankshaft pulleys are beginning to surface on S4 cars in the States, and I would suggest that anyone doing a timing belt replacement might consider the pulley replacement as a matter of course. I flat-out got lucky as it could have come to tears with a torn Gates blue belt or (worse yet) valves clashing with pistons. I am NOT relishing trying to work in the confined space between the bulkhead and engine, but Travis assures me that it looks and sounds worse than it is. I pulled the engine in the first place because I did not think that I could effect the full major service in that confined space. Here's a photo of the engine in place after the service and one of the PNM dual outlet exhaust that I installed during the process.
  17. Thanks, Travis. It's just so disheartening after all this work.... Wish I had seen the FB postings as I would have replaced the pulley without question. I pulled the engine in the first place because doing a timing belt, water pump tensioner bearing (and then properly tensioning the belt) service seemed daunting in such tight quarters... ugh.
  18. I have just finished an extensive major service on my '94 S4. Engine/tranaxle was pulled, and I attended to virtually every issue that might arise with a 25,000 mile car (timing belt, water pump, tensioner bearing, front and rear main seals, chargecooler pump rebuild, valve lash check, cam cover reseal, oil sump reseal, engine mounts replacement, silicone coolant hoses, fuel filter, etc). Just fired the engine and aside from a fuel dribble at the pressure regulator (now addressed) and a drip from the turbo coolant return fitting, all was well.....until I climbed under the car to pinpoint the coolant drip. I found a tooth jettisoned from the crankshaft timing belt drive pulley! It fractured at the bolt hole for the puller. I did remove the pulley when addressing the front main seal, cleaning and examining the piece, and then replaced it. I'm devastated to have found this on my shop floor as I've spent dozens of hours on the refresh project. Observations: 1) The answer is to replace the pulley, but from the limited space available with the engine in-situ, there's no room to use a puller (and with the fractured bolt hole, it would not work no matter...). So, pulling the engine again (oh, no!) is my only option for pulley replacement as I can see it. Thoughts?? 2) The integrity of the pulley seemingly is intact aside from the tooth fracturing-off the periphery. Would I be wrong to just leave it alone as the number of engaging teeth on the belt seems sufficient to provide the necessary purchase to drive the belt. My absolute fear is that with the missing tooth, are the adjacent teeth next to fracture-off? I'm devastated.... Bob
  19. Hello Ian (and thank you everyone for your kind comments...): Yes, it is a Saginaw 4 speed in the car. Chevrolet also offered a 5-speed Borg Warner transmission in 1976. My Best, Bob
  20. Good luck with the project, Chris. Please keep us up to date. Bob
  21. I'll begin by telling you that this is not Esprit-related, but in the vein of messages from the assembly line, I have just completed the 'sympathetic' restoration of a 1976 Chevrolet Cosworth Vega with but 3,183 miles on the odometer. Previously owned by 7 individuals here in the States, the car swapped hands and progressively began to look less and less of a low-mileage car due to marginal care. So, I embarked on a comprehensive effort to return it to a state commensurate with the mileage. (You can view the car at: https://bobweber.wixsite.com/cv3283 ) When I lifted the carpets to re-dye them, and removed the floor insulation, I found a sheet of paper with 6 signatures on it. Via a search, I located what I hoped was one of the individuals located some 40 minutes distant from the factory. I called the number I found and insisted I was not a telemarketer, but a person who bought a car built in the plant in which he worked. He identified himself as a lifer at the factory, and "how can I help you?" I explained finding a sheet of paper and whether he recalled placing it there, and why? "My God! You found it!!"...."I had each of the 6 assembly line supervisors that day sign the paper and I placed it in what I thought was a very special car, hoping that some day, the paper would be found, and you did!!!" 41 years later, I need to add. BTW, the car is for sale in the event any of our Lotus brethren would like to return a Cosworth engine back to its rightful home! Interesting note: if the cam cover/cylinder head looks familiar, Cosworth used much of the cylinder head architecture from the DFV in the Cosworth Vega project. Cheers! Bob
  22. Andy: Please forgive me as I'm new to the forum....First, wonderful work on the car. It's wonderfully detailed...as it should be. Secondly: have you documented your work here on the site? I'd love to have the opportunity to chart the work you've done. Well done! Bob
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