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Need help getting started. Leaks and Questions.
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luftgekuehlt
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PostPosted: Sat May 01, 2021 12:16 pm    Post subject: Need help getting started. Leaks and Questions. Reply with quote

Hi -

I am starting work on a 1970 Ghia (single port, dual relief). I bought the car about 6 years ago, but never had time to work on it due to moving and a new job. It came from a closing auto dealership that had taken it as a trade in the 1980s and left it sitting in a building with other Ďinteresting trades.í

Being new to VWs, I had someone take an initial look when I bought it. He changed the oil, rebuilt the carburetor, set the ignition and valves. It starts and runs, but I had huge problems with exhaust in the cabin.

It was never really driven because I moved. So it sat idle for a few years and has now been shipped to Oregon where I live.

Wanting to stop the exhaust leak, I put it up on stands and removed the exhaust and heater boxes with the intention of rebuilding all of those connections.

In doing so, I found a crank case and transaxle that is caked in oil and dirt. I literally thought someone had sprayed thick undercoating on the motor and transmission. I have been reading through a lot of posts here to research where I need to start to sealing. I am pretty mechanically inclined and have done work on other cars and scooters, but Iím not at a level where I can move straight to a rebuild. So I want to ask you guys for help and advice on how to proceed.

Hereís what I found as a baseline (pictures below):

underside of motor covered in oil (some of this has been cleaned in the photos)
probable oil cooler leak (but driverís side cylinders are relatively dry from above)
thick oil at cylinder/case junction passenger side
thick oil on pushrod seals both sides
lots of oil behind crankshaft pulley and on oil pump cover
oil at joint to bell housing and on transaxle

Here is what I have been planning:

Remove and clean engine
New oil cooler and seals
Add draft boot
Generator stand gaskets
Oil pump gaskets
Flywheel main seal + end play
Pushrod tubes: this is one of my main questions. These are obviously leaking. I would like to install original style replacements to do things right, but am hesitant to remove the cylinder heads and get into problems I may not be able to manage. I am willing to do so, but donít feel capable of replacing valves and rings without help. Am I better off with spring loaded tubes for this first phase?

I want to do things correctly, and as much as possible myself. I know there may be bigger deeper problems, but I feel like I should seal first and see? Let me know your advice. All help is appreciated.

Chris


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Pruneman99
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PostPosted: Sat May 01, 2021 12:40 pm    Post subject: Re: Need help getting started. Leaks and Questions. Reply with quote

It looks to me that the cylinders are leaking where they seal to the case. If the paper gaskets were used there, they may have deteriorated. Personally, I would pull the heads and the cylinders.
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Cusser
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PostPosted: Sat May 01, 2021 1:11 pm    Post subject: Re: Need help getting started. Leaks and Questions. Reply with quote

Pruneman99 wrote:
It looks to me that the cylinders are leaking where they seal to the case. If the paper gaskets were used there, they may have deteriorated. Personally, I would pull the heads and the cylinders.


I would also pull the cylinder heads and cylinders, and add a new set, not expensive. Picture shows (apparently) bad pushrod tubes too.

And if the studs are not tight in the case, then split the case and get case savers installed. So maybe try to torque those before removing cylinder heads.

Rings/pistons not difficult to do; valves are more involved.

Sounds like you have a "B" numbered 1970 1600cc single port engine, a good engine, with more-modern oiling and dual relief pistons.
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1970 VW (owned since 1972) and 1971 VW Convertible (owned since 1976), second owner of each. The '71 now has the 1835 engine, swapped from the '70. Second owner of each. 1988 Mazda B2200 truck, 1998 Frontier, 2005 Yukon, 2004 Frontier King Cab. All manual transmission except for the Yukon. http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/album_page.php?pic_id=335294 http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/album_page.php?pic_id=335297
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Zundfolge1432 Premium Member
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PostPosted: Sat May 01, 2021 3:49 pm    Post subject: Re: Need help getting started. Leaks and Questions. Reply with quote

Some of the best VWs I remember had never been apart and had layers of grease that resembled undercoating 😀

They can seal off and quit leaking with that layer of grease and then someone comes along and has to mess with it. Iíd be more interested to see how it runs and does it overheat. The last time I saw this was with a 58 Ghia 36hp. I carefully took it apart to long block, didnít disturb the heads. It went to a buyer out west and he drove it home.
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EVfun
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PostPosted: Sat May 01, 2021 4:08 pm    Post subject: Re: Need help getting started. Leaks and Questions. Reply with quote

My first thought is just WOW. An air cooled VW leaks and the first idea is to tear it down? This is based on a '30's engine design. It leaks a little, it burns a little too -- keep the total to less than a quart in 1000 miles and call it good! Enjoy these cars, there is no other platform I'm aware of that was in production 60 years after it was released!
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cyclehobby
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PostPosted: Mon May 03, 2021 8:43 am    Post subject: Re: Need help getting started. Leaks and Questions. Reply with quote

Reading your original post before seeing the pics, I thought it would have looked worse than it does. Having said that, and acknowledging that it is challenging to get these wonderful engines to "not leak at all", I'd get to it and start taking it apart.

I did this with my 67 which I drove for a couple years all "oily" just like yours. When I had enough of the greasy mess and decided to clean things up, I was fortunate in that my rebuild didn't require me to split the case. I did a real good degreasing clean and got to carefully assembling everything with new and proper gaskets and materials. I started with sending my original single port heads out for rebuild. I replaced the pistons/cylinders, using sealant as opposed to paper gaskets where the cylinders meet the case. I replaced all the pushrod tubes with new ones and I carefully replaced every gasket after ensuring all surfaces were clean.

Gaskets for the oil pump, the generator stand, fuel pump, distributor (o-ring), oil cooler, intake, exhaust, carb, oil filler and main seal (with o-ring) were carefully installed while the motor sat on my work table. Every nut/bolt was properly torqued.

I'm pleased to report that 2 years later, my engine is nearly leak free. That's right. It's not perfect, but its pretty close... I get an occasional drip from the oil screen plate and a little misting on the front of the motor from my leaky (but full) transaxle (which may be next on my list to address). I do regular inspections and wipe things down to make it easier to see if a leak happens. I only add a slight amount of oil between changes and overall, I'm happy with the results.

Last night, I did an inspection and saw that one of my valve covers was leaking slightly. I took the opportunity to replace the offending gaskets and all is well with my Bug again.

Though I would have loved to be totally leak free, I can accept a little drip here and there. I don't think the original engineers specifically intended for these motors to be drippy or prone to leaks, but as you'll read, they like to leave their mark. I just like it to be as minimal as possible.

Have fun with the car!!
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luftgekuehlt
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PostPosted: Tue May 04, 2021 8:06 pm    Post subject: Re: Need help getting started. Leaks and Questions. Reply with quote

Thanks to everyone who answered. The photos were taken after a first cleaning, so they don't show the full extent of what I saw at the start. But after thinking about what people posted, I realize I need to figure out a lot of things before considering steps toward a teardown of any kind.

My original starting point was really just wanting to make sure the engine is cooled because it had an A/C compressor in it before I bought it and the shroud looked like it might not really deliver.

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So I had removed the shroud to replace it and wanted to get all engine air passages clear, but I ran into a lot of oil below the cooler and at the case junction that I hadn't been able to see.

I've since really cleaned the whole thing and am going to re-install the shroud, take an initial look at the pushrods, set the valves, check compression and do some careful driving to evaluate for overheating, then go from there. I know there's a real chance of deeper bigger problems, but I think this slow approach is better at my level.

I read through this one, and could easily see myself landing on a similar path.

https://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/viewtopic.php?t=701657

I'll post what I find. Thanks again!
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Cusser
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PostPosted: Wed May 05, 2021 8:07 am    Post subject: Re: Need help getting started. Leaks and Questions. Reply with quote

luftgekuehlt wrote:
My original starting point was really just wanting to make sure the engine is cooled because it had an A/C compressor in it before I bought it and the shroud looked like it might not really deliver.


I bought my 1970 in 1972, had dealer-installed DPD AC system so its fan shroud had been modified in exactly the same way. Anyway, in 1976 I built that engine up to 1835cc and dual-port, and it ran that way with the AC system until about 1993. Now that engine powers my 1971 Convertible.

By the way, I'm in Arizona desert.
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1970 VW (owned since 1972) and 1971 VW Convertible (owned since 1976), second owner of each. The '71 now has the 1835 engine, swapped from the '70. Second owner of each. 1988 Mazda B2200 truck, 1998 Frontier, 2005 Yukon, 2004 Frontier King Cab. All manual transmission except for the Yukon. http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/album_page.php?pic_id=335294 http://www.thesamba.com/vw/forum/album_page.php?pic_id=335297
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TinCanFab
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PostPosted: Wed May 05, 2021 2:33 pm    Post subject: Re: Need help getting started. Leaks and Questions. Reply with quote

Before I think about taking a motor like this apart just for leak repairs, first I consider the end play. If it's already worn out and needs a rebuild, it's not worth tearing it apart only for a reseal. Is it bad?
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luftgekuehlt
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PostPosted: Wed May 05, 2021 6:38 pm    Post subject: Re: Need help getting started. Leaks and Questions. Reply with quote

I have not had the engine out to measure end play. I can't cause any movement just pulling on the pulley with my body weight. Is there a real method for measuring this from the back of the motor, or is the flywheel side the only quantitative way to do it?
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67rustavenger
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PostPosted: Wed May 05, 2021 7:19 pm    Post subject: Re: Need help getting started. Leaks and Questions. Reply with quote

luftgekuehlt wrote:
I have not had the engine out to measure end play. I can't cause any movement just pulling on the pulley with my body weight. Is there a real method for measuring this from the back of the motor, or is the flywheel side the only quantitative way to do it?

A magnetic dial indicator stand and dial indicator on the pulley nut will give you realistic readings on the end play.

You can get a magnetic stand and dial indicator at HF. Cheap!
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