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thehackmechanic

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  1. Hey, folks, I'm helping my friend Mike sell his Colorado '73 tii. It just went up on BaT. I've tried to be as straightforward as BaT will let me in the description, and I've written a summary of how I would've presented the car and posted it as the first comment. https://bringatrailer.com/listing/1973-bmw-2002tii-58/
  2. When I upgraded the suspension in Louie, my bone-stock '72tii, to H&Rs, Bilstein HDs, and ST sway bars, I had a tough time getting the new front sway bar in. When I compared it to the front sway bar I took out, I noticed that the original bar didn't jut out as far as I remembered. I went to my little scrap heap in the backyard and found the front sway bar I'd pulled out of Kugel, my other (recently sold) '72tii, and sure enough, Kugel's front sway bar jutted out substantially further than the one in Louie. The one from Louie has very little jut-out; it almost just goes straight across. This is shown in the photo below. I'd never seen a front sway bar like this before, at least not that I remember. I had the epiphany that Kugel had dealer-installed a/c, but Louie did not, and it makes sense that the sway bar with the jut-out would be needed to clear the compressor. I just looked in realoem (https://www.realoem.com/bmw/enUS/showparts?id=2583-USA-01-1972-114-BMW-2002tii&diagId=31_0441), and I see that there ARE separate part numbers for non-a/c and a/c front sway bars. I can't recall every car I've pulled the original bars out to put bigger bars into, but I think the one with the bigger jut-out is the norm. I've always thought that the a/c systems were installed at the dealer. I have a copy of the Behr a/c installation manual, and I don't see it referencing replacing the front sway bar. Did the cars bound for the U.S. market automatically get the a/c-compliant front sway bar just in case? Learn something new every damn day...
  3. I have never done this myself (used these fittings), but I believe that Steve Peterson (Blunt) has.
  4. Update: Tom Jones is right (big surprise there :^). I took out the headlight spacers, and that DID have the effect of dramatically lessening and almost eliminating the interference when the car is up and the suspension is drooping, but it's a red herring. With the car down and the suspension loaded, there's oodles of clearance. The alignment pad thing might be helpful, since I can feel the notch more and more when the car is lowered onto the front tires, but this creates a Catch-22 since when it's loaded I can't get under it and move things and reach up and feel. Boy, the notch is so specific, and just where you don't want it where you're enthusiastically cornering, as it raises the specter that one day you won't be able to push the steering past it.
  5. I need the brain trust on this one. While I have Bertha, my transmogrified '75, on the lift, I wanted to see if I could isolate why the steering feels like it has a notch in it, like a bearing is settling into a divot, when turning left. I always could push through the notch by continuing to turn the wheel, but it's pretty disconcerting during hard tight cornering. I assumed that the problem would be in something with a bearing, but to my surprise, it turns out to be due to the corner of the steering knuckle and one of the 14mm bolts that hold the bottom of the strut to the steering knuckle—the ones with the safety wire through them—hitting the front corner of the left lower control arm. I can see where the knuckle and the bolt have worn a groove in the control arm by being pushed past it. I've replaced dozens of front struts, and know all too well that this bolt is the one that's hard to reach, that with the car in jack stands or on a lift, you need to raise the front hub to get the lower control arm closer to the position it's in with the car on the ground so you can get a box-end wrench on the head of the bolt. But I don't recall it or the corner of the knuckle obstructing lock-to-lock movement of the steering with the front wheels in the air, and I certainly haven't seen them hit like this with the car on the ground. Interestingly, the right LCA appears to have the same clearance issue on both the front and back sides, with plainly visible wear grooves, but the notchiness only exhibits itself when turning left. Has anyone ever seen this? The car has the full Koni suspension package (springs, struts/shocks, sway bars) I installed nearly 35 years ago. It also, curiously, still has the headlight spacers in place, and I can see how those will affect the geometry, force the LCAs lower, and exacerbate the problem. I have a vague memory of the spacers being there because the front suspension made ugly smacking sounds on rough pavement with the spacers out. The big radius rod bushings look absolutely fine; I must've replaced them before I sold the car and it then sat for 26 years. The LCA bushings themselves are original but are neither rock-hard and cracked into pieces nor a drippy gooey mess. I can, and probably will, just create a tiny amount more clearance with a Dremel tool, but I would like to understand the root cause. Thanks. --Rob
  6. I had a driveshaft whose u-joints felt crunchy, and I've got several others, so I pulled this one apart. This is just the front half. And yes it still has most of the center support bearing on it so you'll need to pull that off. So why would you want it? Well, if you're doing a 5-speed conversion and need a shortened shaft, this is the piece that gets shortened. I've always just sent this piece to Dave Varco at Aardvarc, he has it shortened, sends it back, and I mate it with the other half. So if you want to do this without taking your car down waiting for the driveshaft to come back, this might be of use to you. I don't know... twenty bucks plus actual shipping? A few stiff drinks at The Vintage? Just trying to keep it out of the recycle bin and do something useful with it.
  7. TEXT/CALL IF YOU WANT THEM, 617-365-8303 I've got a set of the non-slotted 5x13 steel wheels that were only on '72 and '73 tiis. They'd been sitting outside for many years before they came to me. I broke off the dry-rotted Comp T/As and gave the faces a quick coat of naval jelly (phosphoric acid), a quick scrubbing with a wire wheel on a drill, and a rinse with a power washer, but they all need to be sandblasted. They all have the same "Lemmerz 1344" manufacturer stamp. Two of them are dated 6/72, the other two 6/73. One, to my delight, still has the original orange "Original BMW Telle" label. I put all four wheels on Bertha's front hub and spun them. Three are just about dead straight, but one has a bend to the inside lip. I'm pointing to it in the photo below. Once you know it's there, you can see it, but it's not like it jumps out at you like a major pothole strike does. I assume that it can be pounded straight. I see folks asking $800 and up for these, and people lining up to pay it. I'm asking $700 plus actual shipping costs. For estimation purposes, each wheel weighs about 14 lbs and will probably need a 16x16x8 box. When I have a buyer, I'll find boxes and pack them and look at USPS Parcel Post, UPS, and Fedex and ship via whatever's least expensive. I've been giving away a lot of parts lately through the FB Nor'East 02er page. Please forgive me if I try to get market value for these. I also have these up on the FB 2002 Classifieds page, so to be fair in terms of answering interest in the order it appears, TEXT/CALL IF YOU WANT THEM, 617-365-8303 so it'll ring through to my cell.
  8. Just to update this, the float level was already higher than spec--it was about 31mm--and the fuel in the float bowl was more than covering the passages after I ran the engine, shut it off, and removed the top. I left it where it was. Removed the size 60 primary idle jet, tried the size 65 idle jet, and it made very little difference. Tried the size 70 idle jet, and it made a pretty substantial difference. Driving it now, I'm not sure I'd notice any hesitation had I not spent days chasing the problem. I freely admit that the bigger idle jet may be hiding some other problem, like a vacuum leak through the EGR plumbing, but I think I'll drive it this way for a bit and see if the hesitation mole pokes its head back up and I need to whack it again. --Rob
  9. Yes, sorry, I didn't say that. I pulled the top off the carb, pulled out all the jets and tubes, and blew it out with compressed air.
  10. Hey, folks, I've had my head in tiis for so long that I've forgotten all the Weber stuff :^) I'm sorting out Hampton, the 48,000-mile '73 2002 I bought from its original owner last fall. It's a very stock survivor other than the Weber 32/36. It still even has the EGR plumbing and the solenoid on the firewall controlling its vacuum actuation. It sat in a barn for about a decade before I bought it, but it resurrected pretty easily; the float bowl in the carb just had a little sediment in it, no gummy horror in it or the gas tank. The car starts instantly and basically runs well, except that it's got this obvious low RPM even-throttle hesitation that's fairly pronounced between about 2000 and about 3000 RPM. It smooths out a bit above that, but on the highway you can still feel it hesitating a bit. Put your foot into it (cause the accelerator pump to squirt down the primary barrel) and the hesitation goes away, then returns when the acceleration stops. I don't have an AFM on it or anything, but I've always associated this even-throttle hesitation with lean running. The plugs are pretty grey. I don't think it's an ignition or a timing issue. Timing is set to about 35 degrees of total advance. I've advanced and retarded it, vacuum line connected and plugged, no difference. I've swapped everything in the ignition but the distributor itself, no difference. So, vacuum leaks or Weber jetting, right? If it's a vacuum leak, I haven't found it. I pulled off every vacuum line, including the hose to the brake booster and capped the carb and intake ports with rubber caps; no difference. I sprayed around with carb cleaner while the engine was running and didn't detect anything. I AM, though, inherently suspicious of the EGR. I'd like to leave it in place as it helps reinforce the provenance of the car as a 48k survivor, but it strikes me as a huge potential vacuum leak. I've ordered the intake block-off plate and the Subaru oil drain plug for the exhaust manifold, but once I start to take it off, I'll probably ruin it, and there's no going back, so that's a last resort. The jets aren't anything strange. I have another old Weber, more for parts than anything else, and it has nearly identical jetting in it: primary secondary idle 60 60 main 140 140 corrector 170 160 I enriched the idle mixture a full turn, but it didn't seem to make a difference. What do you think? Try fatter idle jets? Thanks. --Rob
  11. This is probably in here somewhere, but I couldn't find it and needed to work it out for myself (again). Posting it so I can look it up when I forget it (again). When I say "overhand," I mean grabbing the tie rod adjusting bar with your knuckles on the top and rotating your knuckles away from you. When I say "underhand," I mean grabbing the tie rod adjusting bar with your knuckles on the bottom and rotating your knuckles away from you. This is all done from the front of the car, crawling under the front bumper and reaching in to grab the adjusting bars. Driver's Side Overhand rotation (clockwise as viewed from the wheel) toes the wheel IN (moves it to the right). Underhand rotation (counter-clockwise as viewed from the wheel) toes the wheel OUT (moves to the left). Passenger Side Overhand rotation (counter-clockwise as viewed from the wheel) toes the wheel OUT (moves it to the right). Underhand rotation (clockwise as viewed from the wheel) toes the wheel IN (moves it to the left). So, to adjust tow-in or out without changing the centering of the steering wheel, you twist the bars in OPPOSITE directions: To tow it IN, twist the driver's side adjusting bar OVERHAND and the passenger side adjusting bar UNDERHAND. To tow it OUT, reverse that--twist the driver's side adjusting bar UNDERHAND and the passenger side OVERHAND. If you want to center the steering wheel, you twist the bars in the SAME direction: If the car steers RIGHT with the wheel centered, you want to move both wheels to the LEFT, so twist both bars UNDERHAND. If the car steers LEFT with the wheel centered, you want to move both wheels to the RIGHT, so twist both bars OVERHAND. This knowledge was won by getting it wrong, writing it down, doing it, finding that it was wrong, and finding that I'd written it down wrong. There's a general alignment DIY article here (https://www.hagerty.com/media/maintenance-and-tech/low-cost-tricks-for-a-diy-alignment/). Basically I get it in the ball park with an alignment bar, then feel if it's wandering (toed out) or scrubbing (toed in). Generally it starts off wandering, and I make quarter-turn adjustments on both bars until it feels settled. You can turn it more and feel it starting to scrub and back it off. --Rob
  12. Hey folks. Sorry I'm not posting here much these days (I'm always still reading, though :^). Here's a fun tidbit I'm posting here before I write it up for BimmerLife. Years back, I was curious about whether you could remove a 2002's front strut cartridges while leaving the strut housing in the car—that is, undo the bushing at the top, but leave the housing connected to the steering knuckle at the bottom, tilt it out from under the fender, and compress the spring, remove the bushing, and swap out the cartridge in-place. The answer turned out to be: Yes, you can, if you can find a spring compressor to slide under the fender and squeeze the spring in place, but a) it's difficult to find such a compressor, and b) if you do, you need to be very careful that the bushing's threaded studs and the end of the strut piston don't gouge the paint and the metal on the underside of the fender lip. Again, years back, I bought a hydraulic spring compressor that if you modified it, was able to do this, but not long after I used it, it began leaking horribly. Fast-forward to this week. As part of planning a suspension upgrade in Louie, my '72tii that's the subject of Ran When Parked (and which I suspected was still wearing its original shocks and struts), I became aware of a recently-available spring compressor design with two curved plates squeezed together by a single thick threaded column, and was intrigued because a) it looked like you could fit it on the spring while the strut assembly was still in the car, and b) the bolt you need to tighten to squeeze the plates together is at the bottom where you can reach it. https://www.amazon.com/YUAN-MacPherson-Interchangable-Compressor-Extractor/dp/B0788C9VFL/ref=sr_1_19?dchild=1&keywords=bmw+spring+compressor&qid=1589929281&sr=8-19 I saw one of these compressors on Facebook Marketplace for half of new, so I bought it, and figured that I'd try the in-situ strut removal again. I first pulled off the caliper and undid the sway bar link, then maneuvered the compressor under the fender. I was thrilled that I could fit it onto the spring and access the tightening nut at the bottom, but I didn't seem to be getting enough squeeze on the spring. Remember, I was trying to not only compress the spring to take the tension off it to remove the bushing, but also to shorten the entire sprung length of the assembly so I could swing it out from underneath. I re-positioned the compressor so that the bottom plate was under the bottom cup rather than between two spring coils. This squeezed the spring downward quite a bit more. Placing a rag over the strut bushing so I wouldn't scratch up the fender, and using one foot to stand on the steering knuckle to force the bottom of the strut housing as low as possible, I WAS able to tilt the top of the assembly out from under the fender. From there, the removal of the bushing and spring are the same as if the assembly is laying on the floor, though you do need to take care not to have the weight of the whole thing lean too much on the ball joint, which is at an unnatural angle. Of course, the real question was then whether the gland nut holding the strut cartridge in the housing would come out without a fight to the death, because if it wouldn't, I would've needed to remove the whole housing so I could lay it on the floor and apply maximum leverage. Fortunately, a little heat, a little wax, and two pipe wrenches pulled it off. The cartridge inside did indeed appear to be the original oil-filled damper. So, it works. You CAN use this kind of compressor for an in-place strut housing replacement. But just to repeat: You need to be REALLY careful not to have the strut bushing scratch the hell out of the fender lip, and beyond that, it is likely to put some gouges in the undercoating up underneath the tower and the inner fender. If you don't want to risk this, don't do it this way. If the gland nut won't come off, you may still need to pull the housing out the old-fashioned way so you can lay it on the floor for maximum leverage. I'm installing a used set of Bilstein HDs I've had laying around, and since they're pressurized gas shocks and not hydraulic ones, they naturally extend to their maximum length, which means that, to get things back in, even with the spring compressed, I'll probably need to wrap a ratchet strap around the top of the strut to compress and shorten it while I maneuver it under the fender. Still, pretty cool, huh? --Rob
  13. That is very odd. I've installed at least six of these inexpensive Chinese-made Sanden 508 clones and have never had a problem, so given the choice of suspecting the compressor or the expansion valve, I'd suspect the expansion valve. I don't really know of a way to test it. I've never really trusted the new Uro Parts expansion valves, but I can't say that I had a bad one either. I tend to try to find NOS Egelhof valves or reuse old ones if they're clean. As it says in the book, if you know that the compressor is engaging, when you start to charge, you should immediately see the low side spike upward as the refrigerant gets drawn in. You need to moderate this with the blue knob on the manifold gauge set. It'll quickly stabilize and you can run the knob wide open. It should settle down on the low side somewhere between 20 and 40 psi. 80 is way too high. I do have a Clardy system in a box here at the house, but I've never had one in one of my cars. I worked on one in a friend's car and was very impressed by how cold it got on one can of R134a. They do have a nice advantage in having the expansion valve outside of the evap assembly. That's a tough choice. I had a problem in my E9 that I convinced myself was a clogged expansion valve, pulled the whole damn thing apart, and the valve appeared to be fine, at least visually. --Rob
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