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Old 17-04-2018   #91
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Re: Restoring an 82 X1/9

It is often said that hindsight is 20/20. In this case, I would agree with you. However, since I am disinclined to go back and remove it all again, I will treat the problems I find with the engine/tran in place.

From what I can see using a flashlight and cheap borescope, the inside of the cylinder head and block look reasonable. Not nearly as bad as the rest of the pipes in the system.

And, you are correct that changing coolant at proper intervals usually leaves the pipes and mechanicals in good condition. However, since I can't go back in time and grab whoever owned it by the lapels and shake some sense into them, I am left to deal with the aftermath and bad decisions. Again: I believe someone used radiator stop-leak, and attempted to keep it as a permanent solution, instead of correcting the problem.

The further I get in this project, the more I hear the phrase in the back of my head: "Rode hard, and put away wet".
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Old 21-04-2018   #92
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Re: Restoring an 82 X1/9

Project Mutant: Completed creation of a closed-loop cooling system without radiator, and without thermostat. The idea is to get clean water running through the system BEFORE I hook it up to the new radiator, refurb heater core, and new coolant tubes. Ran some fresh water into the system. It works. No runs, No Drips, No Errors. Flows water. Put fresh water in, get rusty gnarly water out. Water from the system is REALLY ugly, as I expected.

Done for the day. Will be doing several cooling system flushes tomorrow until the water flows clean, THEN I'll add some cooling system cleaner chemicals, and run THAT until things are clean.

Hooked up the instrument panel I received with the car. I don't think it is the correct one for the car. The tachometer seems like it is reading 500 or more revs to high, the charging meter and temperature meter don't seem to work, and I get no reading for the fuel level. 36 year old problems. :-)
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Old 22-04-2018   #93
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Re: Restoring an 82 X1/9

Project Mutant: After 3 fresh water flushes, and 2 chemical flushes, the coolant system in and around the engine is running CLEAR!

Removed the thermostat housing, and all of the temporary cooling hoses and heater hoses I installed to do the flushes.

Now, back to working on the underbody coolant pipes and heater pipes. Getting closer to completing the cooling system revival, and upgrades. We'll see what the next week brings.

I did find another area of rust through in the drivers footwell. I'll get that done after I get the underbody work done. Then brakes and clutch assembly attachment and bleeding, and it will be ready to sit on its own four wheels again.
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Old 23-04-2018   #94
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Re: Restoring an 82 X1/9

Oh yeah. I also rebuilt the dogbone upper motor mount. The rubber at both ends had perished, the hole in one end had elongated until the engine would wag back and forth at will.

Using the Chevy transmission mounts (#2122). It took quite a bit of sweat and muscle to get the new bushings in, but TOTALLY worth it.

$8 worth of mounts and a little time (less than an hour), and the dogbone is as good or better than new. Especially since the new dogbones I saw (which were all out of stock anyway) were from $40 to $60.
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Old 07-05-2018   #95
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Re: Restoring an 82 X1/9

Project Mutant: Time for an update...

I got an excellent start on getting the box under the car where the coolant lines run nearly complete. Because I am running coolant lines that are slightly larger than stock (and STAINLESS STEEL), I decided to make the box slightly taller.

The larger tubes required more height. So, I extended the box sides 3/8" taller. I then fabbed up a new front end and just need to fab up the rear end, and then I am ready for the new tubes.

I am also running BOTH of the new stainless steel heater lines in the box, rather than running one in the center console.

I replaced all of the coolant hoses in the engine compartment. Thanks to Bertie from Canada, I also have an excellent condition coolant tube from the brand new water pump, replacing the one that had holes in the big tube, and the small tube.

By the end of next week I will either have new stainless coolant tubes welded (all materials are on-hand, the appropriate skill set is not!), or have a new set bent. I decided to NOT bend the front of the tubes. Makes them easier to work with and I can fabricate something for the front end of the car to the radiator.
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Last edited by Skillmaker; 07-05-2018 at 02:30.
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Old 14-05-2018   #96
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Re: Restoring an 82 X1/9

Project Mutant: The coolant tubes and heater tubes are in the box, and after some more 'massaging', the box is ready to go back under the car.

Need to get some body panel adhesive to make sure the box is structurally sound when I mount it to the bottom of the car, and some sealant for the ends of the box to keep the nasty stuff out Then need to get the front tubes cut off where I want them to be. Then, ready to mount everything back up and start finishing the cooling system and heater.

As far as the overall job quality? It is not my best work. But in the words of a wise old woman, spoken with a deep-south drawl, for some reason in Brainerd Minnesota "It ain't gourmet, but it's food."

Also determined today that I have the incorrect speedometer cable. The one that came with the car is for a mid-seventies X1/9, and won't connect to the speedometer. One more thing... :-( Oh well, I wasn't planning on doing any measurable speed any time soon.
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Old 19-05-2018   #97
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Re: Restoring an 82 X1/9

Project Mutant: Progress is being made. Holes in under-car tray have been filled. Seams for end caps and around pipes have been sealed with automotive seam-sealer. Radiator box has been de-rustified, and primed, and painted a temporary color.

"This isn't even my final form!"

New (correct) speedometer cable arrived.

Tomorrow, have some mikey-do items to attend to, then grind the mounting area for the under-car tray smooth (spot-weld cutter leaves behind flotsam and jetsam), and drill five new holes in the side of the tray for the new speedometer cable mounts.

Then, we clean the mounting surfaces, pre-drill a few dozen holes in the tray flange for pop-rivets to hold everything in place, and lay on the two-part epoxy auto body part adhesive. Then I have 90 minutes to get the tray up where it belongs, and pop-rivet it in place to allow the body adhesive to cure for a day. After that, it is a one-piece with the rest of the car, forever. A day later, and I can hook up the hoses and maybe even get the radiator in place.
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Old 20-05-2018   #98
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Re: Restoring an 82 X1/9

Project Mutant: Minor milestone. The under-car tray with the new stainless steel coolant and heater lines is completed, and is mounted, with the aid of body panel epoxy and a couple dozen self-tapping screws.

4 hours set time, then I can seam-seal all of the little gaps at the corners, attach all four of the hoses in the back, run the new speedometer cable that mounts on the side of the tray, and start reinstalling the heater core in the dash.

Tomorrow evening, I can put the front radiator hoses in place, and start figuring out how to mount the radiator lines and keep them neat and tidy in the front.

BTW - if you are in Jacksonville area, and need some thin stainless tubing TIG welded, I know a guy.
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Last edited by Skillmaker; 20-05-2018 at 16:31.
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Old 11-07-2018   #99
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Thumbs up Re: Restoring an 82 X1/9

Looking good
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Old 17-07-2018   #100
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Re: Restoring an 82 X1/9

Brilliant information here. I need to fix the heater valve on my X1/9. Youre doing a great job!
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Old 31-07-2018   #101
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Re: Restoring an 82 X1/9

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Old 13-08-2018   #102
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Re: Restoring an 82 X1/9

Awesome thread! I'm learning a lot. Thanks for sharing!
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