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Old 11-05-2018, 09:51 PM   #371
Andyblue
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Excellent update and looking good.

Really good when you can find someone trustworthy to help out and just make sure you regularly use the AC - even doing winter - and helpfully no leaks
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Old 11-05-2018, 10:13 PM   #372
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Hi, the only thing I can think of now regarding the belt length is either you were sent a smaller pulley than 11% or as you've mentioned the alternator has been replaced, that has a different size pulley on. The belt shouldn't have stretched that quick.

Looks like it just needs a shorter belt, you'll be able to swap it in 5 minutes with all your practice
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Old 12-05-2018, 06:53 PM   #373
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This is still my favourite thread, makes my night when you post an update lol cars looking great!


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Old 13-05-2018, 10:11 PM   #374
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Thanks all!


Quote:
Originally Posted by The_Weasel View Post
Hi, the only thing I can think of now regarding the belt length is either you were sent a smaller pulley than 11% or as you've mentioned the alternator has been replaced, that has a different size pulley on. The belt shouldn't have stretched that quick.

Looks like it just needs a shorter belt, you'll be able to swap it in 5 minutes with all your practice
Good point there. Iíve had a look and the next smallest Gates belt seems to be the 6pk1368 which would be 7mm shorter than my current 6pk1375.

So I think Iíll get that ordered and see what it looks like.

My tensioner tool is a bit pants - it likes to slip off. So Iím not particularly looking forward to using it again!!
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Old 13-05-2018, 10:29 PM   #375
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Originally Posted by jbenekeorr View Post
My tensioner tool is a bit pants - it likes to slip off. So Iím not particularly looking forward to using it again!!
Once you've got the tool over the tensioner bolt, wedge a bit of wood down the side to keep it in place
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Old 13-05-2018, 10:32 PM   #376
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The_Weasel View Post
Once you've got the tool over the tensioner bolt, wedge a bit of wood down the side to keep it in place
Why didnít I think of that?

Can we change your username to The_Oracle?
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Old 13-05-2018, 10:35 PM   #377
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Originally Posted by jbenekeorr View Post
Why didnít I think of that?

Can we change your username to The_Oracle?
Lol, believe me, mine slipped many times before I realised to do it
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Old 05-06-2018, 08:03 AM   #378
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Part 24 - Anniversary and preventative maintenance

Hi all,


This coming week marks one year since I brought the MINI home! Time has certainly flown by.


Let's remind ourselves how it looked a year ago!









And in pieces





Compared with the most recent pictures I have






________



I've been quite busy since the last update performing a number of jobs on the car, now that I can rely on some good weather.


First up was the bonnet. When I first DA'd the car, I noticed some weird oxidisation on the centre section of the bonnet which I wasn't able to fully remove - but didn't worry about it, as the car didn't run at that point! Anyway, lately it had begun to really show up on the bonnet again.


This is the best picture I could get of it.





I was running very low on supplies, so I went with a blue ShineMate Black Diamond pad and Megiars Ultimate Compound. It took quite a bit of effort to correct with UC and a slightly knackered pad. I finished off with a Menzerna finishing pad and Menzerna SF4000 (discontinued I believe). I got the oxidisation marks out and the majority of the swirls, but some still remain as you can see below. I did the entire front clamshell.











These MINIs have a very upright windscreen which really collects bugs during the warmer months!





________



The floor mat fasteners I installed in the previous update both failed after a fortnight! The glue holding the Velcro pad failed which meant the mat is just sliding around like it used to - the mats hadn't even been removed in this time! I contacted the eBay seller (UK247trade) with pictures asking for a refund - they were utterly useless and wanted me to post the failed items back to them at my cost. I explained that it wasn't worth me paying for postage and driving to the post office for a £5 item, they then stopped replying to messages. Only when I opened a dispute with eBay did I receive a refund!

I'm going to see if I can cobble up my own solution using the failed pads.




________



Next was the leather seats. I'd run out of leather cleaner and wanted to try something new. I decided on Dr Leather spray which I wrote a lengthy review on (Seen here http://www.detailingworld.co.uk/foru...d.php?t=405635 ) if you haven't already tried this stuff - JUST GET SOME!

My seats were really shiny. I'd tackled them with other products in the past but not really got anywhere - I had assumed this was just a casualty of a car nearing 150,000 miles. I was wrong!






Before:







During:







50/50:











After:
















________



Now on to the mechanical side.

The look of my expansion tank was making me a bit nervous. They have a habit of splitting along the seam in the middle - mine wasn't showing any symptoms of this, but the brown colour it had become was indicative of a very old tank which was certainly on borrowed time. Happily, they are not a very expensive part - so I got one ordered. I deliberately didn't buy one of the cheaper ones - but spent a little more for a Meyle branded item. It was still only around £30.

Changing the tank is an easy job - I emptied the old tank of coolant with an antifreeze tester (which is like a smaller version of a turkey baster). I then removed the large bottom hose and smaller top hose which are secured with horrible spring clamps, removed a single 10mm bolt and pulled it out of the car. It really did look quite gross when I was able to see the sides and rear of the tank. I'm glad I changed it. I refilled with new antifreeze and checked for any air in the system (there was none).















________



The next job was the low speed radiator fan resistor. This burns out, meaning your MINI only has the high speed fan to rely on which only kicks in at quite a high temperature. In my case, I had done the proper resistor fix before I got the car running, however I had bought completely the wrong resistor which was so strong that the fan wouldn't even turn! So I solved this at the time by setting the fan up so that it would come on at full speed when it would usually run the low speed setting. This was fine, except since I had the A/C re-gassed - it would fire up the fan on full speed most of the time to keep the compressor cool - however this is really loud!


I ordered the correct resistor and got it hooked up. I made a heat sync from a thick piece of aluminium which I cut to a size that would fit the available space, drilled a hole and mounted it to the car using an existing threaded hole. This is a common modification that people make, and many use this hole, as it removes the need to make any holes in the car! I used thermal paste to mount the resistor to the plate to aid with heat transfer. After testing the modification, I found it does get quite hot - however after asking on MINI2, they said that this is quite normal. It's really nice to have the fan running correctly, it's much quieter!










________



I had almost run out of engine oil for top-ups as I had accidentally used some of it to oil coat some rust patches on the Land Rover, so instead of buying an extra litre, I decided to bring forward my oil change and just get 5 litres instead. I went for Mobil 1 Super 3000 5w30 as it is fully synthetic and BMW Longlife 04 compliant. I also had a Bosch oil filter in stock.







http://www.halfords.com/motoring/eng...xe-5w30-oil-5l


I really need to get some new ramps, as the metal set I have are too steep for the MINI and have a habit of skating along the floor as you drive onto them. Also, one of them has a broken weld at the top - so under no circumstances would I drive up them more than a few inches or put any part of my body under the car whilst it is on them (apart from my arm!). So as usual, I took a big run up and hurled the Mini at the ramps - they skated about a foot along the drive and the car went up by about 3 inches but that was enough to allow me to get the drain pan underneath and reach in to undo the sump plug.


Then I played 'hunt the oil filter housing'. The filter is removed with a shallow 36mm socket. I used the tip I picked up on here of unscrewing it most of the way, which allows the oil to drain down into the sump, rather than pouring out all over the exhaust. This worked like a charm again.








Old filter





New filter and seal






________



Long term readers will remember that I changed the gearbox oil back before I got the car on the road, however I used MTF94 which attracted some comments as it's quite a basic old school oil. I did some research and found that the gearbox oil should meet the standards of BMW MTF LT3, as my car has the facelift non-LSD gearbox. Opieoils also backed this up - so I ordered 2 litres of Fuchs Titan Sintofluid https://www.opieoils.co.uk/p-981-***...ion-fluid.aspx

I also bought a fluid pump from Halfords to make it far easier to pump the oil uphill into the gearbox.





As the gearbox is a 'fill to spill' deal, you need the car to be on flat ground to get the correct level - however the car is far too low to get under without lifting it. My solution was to raise the entire car off the ground with 4 axle stands (one under each jacking point). I verified it with a spirit level (although I have no idea if the roof runs flat ). I also left the jack under one of the sills, just as a bit of extra protection.








Once I was underneath, I located the fill and drain plugs. I did check the fill plug first - you really don't want to drain it and find that you can't get the fill plug off!






I drained the old oil into an old washing up bowl. It came out relatively clear, it just looks black in the container!






Then I was able to refill the gearbox with my new pump - it holds a litre at a time and with some keen pumping (excuse me?!) you can get a litre into the gearbox in about a minute. It began to drip back out after about 1.7 litres, so I refitted the fill plug and lowered the car.

The gear change does feel nicer now. But mainly i'm just glad to know it has the correct oil in it.


________



I'd been using the MINI's battery on the Rover I was selling as it didn't have one of its own. When I had a reasonably serious buyer, I donated the MINI's battery to it and ordered myself a new one. The Halfords battery I gave away was the cheapest one I could get at the time, so this time I went for a much more substantial one - a Varta Silver D15 which has 610CCA and 63AH with a 5 year guarantee, versus the previous battery's 500CCA and 56AH and 3 year guarantee. I would like to be able to report some sort of improvements - but it's a battery ... it starts the engine. It will just hopefully do better job of it in the winter .









________



As mentioned in the previous update - even with my new belt tensioner, there wasn't enough tension being put on the belt. Whilst it wasn't slipping any more, it was still a priority to get fixed because the new tensioner was operating more towards its outer limit. Members on here suggested that I buy a smaller belt to combat the problem, despite me supposedly having the correct belt already - so that's exactly what I did. I ordered a Gates 6PK1368 which is 7mm shorter than the previous belt.






This was quite an easy job given my past experience and tips picked up from other DW members (thank you!). So I removed the engine mount, got the tensioner tool out and jammed some wood down the side of it to stop it coming off (thanks The_Weasel) and locked out the tensioner. With the offside front wheel and arch liner removed (I managed to save two and a half of the scrivets this time ... i'm improving ) then it was just a case of swapping the belts and unlocking the tensioner.








We now have one hole showing on the tensioner which is correct






While I was in the wheel arch, I spotted one of the front brake pipes which had an advisory on the MOT for slight corrosion. I cleaned it up and applied copper grease to protect it.









Another job was the timing chain tensioner. These can fail over time and cause horrible rattling - I had no such issue, but there was a tiny bit of chain rattle on the first start of the day. For the price of a tensioner (£25) I decided it was a good piece of preventative maintenance to do, whether it fixed my issue or not.






This job is a classic case of having the right tools for the job. When removing the tensioner last year for the engine strip down - I did it without the correct tools and smashed up my finger! Now, I have a good 6 point 19mm socket and various wobble extensions. These are a necessity, because the chain tensioner is located down the back of the engine and is obscured by the pipes on the oil filter housing and small oil cooler, meaning a socket on a straight extension is very difficult to get lined up - and it is in there really tight!



Old tensioner removed. It does have some wear showing on it.






New tensioner going in. You will notice that it is shorter - that is because the new one is compressed - as soon as it builds oil pressure for the first time - it pops out. This makes it much easier to install as you're not having to push against it to get the bolt in.







And finally - I remember seeing on James_G's MINI thread that he had changed the fuel cap seal. I decided to check mine and sure enough - mine was perished too, so I bought a new one for £4.50 on eBay. Incredibly easy to change - just pull the old one off and roll the new one on!









Thanks for reading.

One year down, hopefully many more to go!

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Old 05-06-2018, 09:55 AM   #379
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Fantastic catch-up there mate, that Dr Leather Spray looks amazing. Iíll order some.


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Old 05-06-2018, 10:37 AM   #380
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Brilliant post there. Can't believe it's been a year mind. Have kept up to date with your thread since the beginning and the rover!

For checking to see if the car is level...open one of the doors and use the sill...That's what I use.
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