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Tub ready to paint

Tub ready to paint

Engine, Gearbox, Bulkhead & Radiator Fitted!

Having completed the bulkhead wiring, assembly of the actual vehicle could begin.
First on was the engine, I was able to do this on my own using the engine crane and a load leveller.
Next to go one was the gearbox, this was much more of a challenge as it was an awkward lift and hard to align with the mounts, plus the fact that the gearbox had an overdrive fitted meant that there was very little clearance at the middle cross-member.

Luckily I had some expert help in the form of Susan’s cousin Chris, who works as a mechanic for Mercedes in Brisbane, Australia.
Chris is actually on honeymoon in England with his new wife Tanya, also a former mechanical engineering student, and both of them took a time out from visiting historical and romantic English castles and countryside to get their hands greasy for a day helping with the rebuild.
With help from Chris, Tanya and Susan, the gearbox was mated up to the engine, it took a bit of fettling and messing about with jacks and levers under the engine to get the heights correct but we got there in the end.

I filled the gearbox, transfer case and overdrive with EP90 transmission oil (1.5, 2.5 and 0.4 Litres in case you wanted the figures) and spilled a good bit onto the paving slabs as well!

Chris set about mounting the battery and air filter tray and a meaty earth strap having used a wire brush to get a good earth contact on the chassis first, once this was done the bulkhead was next. Again it was quite difficult to get the main bolts in place, but with a bit of stretching and bashing they were done, and the thing secured.
The mechanical oil sensor was hooded up to the oil filter housing and the vacuum gauge pipe fitted to the carburettor.
A second earth strap was mounted from the starter motor to the chassis on the left hand side, with the waxy under-seal and epoxy mastic paint removed in situ with a wire brush again.
Meanwhile I made up a suitable length battery cable and connected it to the starter button post.

Next on was the radiator panel and front apron, then the radiator was filled with water rather than coolant as we wanted to be sure that there were no leaks before wasting any expensive coolant!

Unfortunately the main battery was not in a good enough condition to turn the starter motor with any great gusto, so we’ll need to wait a while before we get to fire it up! By that stage the light was fast fading, so the bonnet was fitted and a tarpaulin added to keep things safely under wraps.

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