The only place for a coil spring is up Zebedee's arse.
Sloth's Avatar
798 posts
Jan 05 2016
27 April 2018 - 14:37

For a while now I've had a miss on startup that clears within 10-20 seconds, which new leads hasn't sorted, so I figured/hoped a new set of plugs would sort that when I got around to it, or at worst one of my britpart coil packs was failing. This might still be an entirely unrelated problem, however..

Over the last couple of days I've had a missfire that rapidly got worse, to the point cyl 6 died entirely on my way home from work. Same on LPG and petrol. Plug lead connected fine at both ends, and it was only cyl 6 that was dead and not also a cylinder on the other bank, suggesting investigating the plug end first was the way to go. Pulled the plug... and it looked like this:

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These plugs were new in 18 months ago, maybe slightly longer... so while they could do with changing, this looks concerning. I pulled another out and it looked like your typical wear - nothing unusual. #6 though looks like it has been rusting away...

I'm not losing coolant (for once), no steam other than when its humid out and the box has the usual condensation in it. Even if it were coolant, it wouldn't rust, and it should look clean rather than stained I would have thought. So lets say it was straight water in the cooling system, the plug would have to be sat in it to do that.

To further confuse things, when I did a compression test last year, this cylinder had higher compression than the rest - considerably higher if I recall. I didn't have my tester with me last night, just one that was older than me, which read about 150-180 psi but the non-return valve was leaking so didn't see a proper figure. I was mostly interested to see if I'd lost compression entirely at the time on that cylinder.

So I'm not sure what to make of this... conveniently had a spare plug from a Honda engined generator that fit, and its now running on all 8 again as if nothing had happened. Too early to tell on the startup miss, there seems to be little consistency as to when it does that, apart from cold startup.

23 March 2018 - 08:29

Not oily, but smelly?

I need to replace my gas filter and the hose between the vaporiser and HD344 injectors... but I'm not entirely sure what size it is, and with the hose in the state its currently in I'd rather not remove it to measure.

I have an OMVL Dream XXI-g vaporiser, which I believe is 12mm. Plenty of filters about that are 12mm too, but I can't find any info on the injectors. I have a feeling they might be 10mm?

13 August 2018 - 08:38

I have an oil leak (standard fitment, of course) that I can't work out where is originating from...

The starter is getting covered in oil, to the point the frame rail immediately opposite it is getting wet, and the exhaust heat shield gets a build up that burns off.

The rocker covers are, for once, not leaking, and I've cleaned/degreased both sides of the engine since last doing them.

Looking up from underneath, the oil does not appear to be coming from the front of the engine, but about half way back, it suddenly is quite wet:

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Front end is dry:

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If it were the valley gasket at the back of the engine, I can't see how oil would make it this far forward? I'm also not dropping much on the ground, the odd drop. I think most is worryingly ending up being burnt off. I thought head gasket perhaps, but from what I can see there is only one oil feed up to the heads, and that is on the front end of the engine above the cylinders...

07 July 2016 - 18:27

So it looks like I need to learn another skill over the next few days. My front to back and both rear little solid pipes are corroded, and they do look pretty nasty.

What I can't fathom is the point of the little solid lines? Why can the lines from the front not go straight to the long flexi hose brackets on the car?


Mine is like the top box - on my phone and chrome won't play nicely with the insert image box!

01 September 2016 - 18:22

Both of my P38s have made a click/clunk/clack noise shortly after you start moving when reversing. Now though the noise occurs when you pull away, more often than not. More than anything its just annoying.

The LR TSB outlines resolving the problem by applying Loctite 648 to the splines in the diff end.

I left the car with the local indy to sort a few bits and see if they could find the cause, if not, look at the TSB and perhaps do that. They weren't too inclined and raised an interesting point... if the half shafts are loctited to into the splines, how do you remove the hub/axle to replace a wheel bearing?

30 August 2016 - 15:22

I've had this noise when the engine is warmed up and at idle since owning it, and it hasn't gotten any worse in the 5-6k miles I've done, but it is pretty irritating with the windows down. I haven't held back with the loud pedal either, so I would have thought if it were a bearing, by now it would have said sod it and er ceased being a bearing...

Thumped the cats - they don't seem to make a noise. From the top side with the bonnet up you can't really hear it - but you can from underneath and the sides. Soon as the revs get over 1000-1200 its gone. I don't get any knocking under load or any other unwelcome nasty sounds.

Soon as I noticed the noise back shortly after getting it, I had the sump off and gave things a wiggle - no up/down movement in any big ends, a tiny bit of lateral play.

The tinnier bit of the sound makes me think its something relatively lightweight clattering somewhere, but I've yet to work it out. Sounds about the same from both sides.

It's not a diesel... honest

19 October 2016 - 21:09

Forgive the vague subject. I have a fault in the engine ECU (Thor), but a look online doesn't seem to tally up with the description on the nanocom, nor do I quite know what the nanocom is talking about other than bank 2:

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I presume something has upset it, but I don't know what it's talking about to be honest! Lean, rich, up, down, left or right - ideas?

I'm 99% that was the only fault... but now I'm questioning myself but its too late as I've cleared it to see if it comes back tomorrow.

17 April 2016 - 18:40

Noticed the coolant dropping again... seems this time the radiator/thermostat bypass hose (the one that Ts from the top hose to the stat) has a hole in it that must be opening up as it softens, annnnnnd the heater core o-rings are leaking too. I swear the heater core leaking is like a rite of passage on a P38.

Three P38s, and by the time I'm done, all three would have had Audi heater cores... well technically one has it already... soon to be removed before it gets cubed!

What with water ingress, if it isn't leaking into the car, its leaking out of it...

17 June 2016 - 17:07

It would genuinely be quicker to list the things on my car that don't either leak fluids out or let them in... I think the only thing that thankfully hasn't been leaking so far is the petrol side of things! Otherwise, coolant, oil, ATF, rain water, refrigerant... everything has either been leaking into or out of the car. And now I've (hopefully) sorted the air con, I braked a ltitle sharply earlier today and a small downpour made its way out of the heater box into the passenger footwell.

Guess I'll be checking the condensate drains tomorrow... unless its the freaking pollen filter/blower/scuttle panel. Pretty sure it was condensate from where it came from and the fact it hasn't done it at all on that side till now.

10 October 2016 - 11:05

My heater is going cold at idle, though my LPG vapouriser is staying hot - you can feel the difference in the pipes. It is currently plumbed in parallel, so presumably the flow is going mostly through the vapouriser at idle. My heater core is leaking at the o-rings and needs replacing one way or another (Audi route), but I'm trying to decide whether to keep the parallel setup or put the LPG in series like I did on my old car. I wonder if the o-ring leak is causing a bit of an air lock at the top of the 'kinks' in the heater hoses on the engine side.

Strangely, the return from the vapouriser has been plumbed into the hose going to the header tank, probably because it made things a bit neater.

Looking at this diagram, if I were to go series, I'd much rather use the return line from the heater core (22) as the feed/return to/from the vapouriser. It would make fitting much neater and avoid any high points in the pipework. But... obviously some heat would be lost through use of the heater. I know that in winter, this will mean it will take longer to switch over to LPG, but once warmed up, does anyone think this would be a problem?

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20 July 2016 - 06:44

Got to work this morning and had to get something from the passenger side... when I noticed quite a bit of something leaking from the rear end of the running board!

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Pretty much knew what it was going to be, but I was just surprised it had made it so far!

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Damned drain. Gave it a squeeze from under the dash and it let quite a lot flow through, but I think I'm going to need to try and remove it to clean it properly. Poking from underneath hasn't sorted it previously apparently!

06 April 2016 - 17:50

I think my gearbox cooler is leaking - having washed down the radiator and two coolers, I seem to have a bit of oil reappearing on the bottom of the two coolers. Need to sort this before putting the condenser back on and filling the A/C up.

I've got spares on my breaker, but I've read that these tend to not come off too easily or at all without breaking the ends off. Any tips on how I might remove the pipes without damage? Plusgas? Heat? Prayer?

12 December 2016 - 20:48

Any other options bar the Airtex? Mine has been on less than a year and its now leaking past the shaft... not entirely amused.

07 March 2016 - 19:50

I guess they could leak?

Mine doesn't, but it is really eager to lock up and drive the fan an awful lot. I'm wondering if this is a trait of cheaper viscous couplings - both the Britpart one I put on my first P38 and whatever unit is on my new one do the same thing. It drowns out the V8 completely :(

Firstly, the engine isn't overheating, building any excessive pressure or really doing anything out of the ordinary (then again, it is a Rover V8, maybe that isn't normal). It can sit for a couple of hours at "70" and behave itself, and I can sit in traffic for ages barely moving without any issue.

My commute is say 20 miles on the motorway and then 8 miles or so minor roads through town etc. As soon as I come off the motorway, the fan will lock up, and then never shut up at low speeds. I get that is sort of the point - but its 5c outside, I wouldn't have thought it would take long to appease things and let go again. It will do the same from cold if I'm driving around town for long enough.

The red P38 we have doesn't do this... the fan will lock up from the heat soak in the engine bay if you stop and restart it a little while later, and then cool off fairly quickly and go quiet again. Otherwise it remains quiet - even after a run on the motorway.

What's your experience?

11 January 2016 - 09:29

In my quest to discover more working horses, I'm wondering if this is normal, seems to have gone unanswered 'over there'.

Most times when I stop the engine, I get a strange sound that seems like something is being released, but it isn't the EAS. Sometimes it can be heard as a sort of ongoing noise while the engine is running after starting. It is loud enough you can hear it inside the car. It does seem to be coming from right side of the bay (when looking at the engine).

So, does your GEMS make any odd noises at all when you turn it off?

30 March 2017 - 07:34

More of a tale for your amusement, as the offending blighter of a sensor has now been evicted from its exhaust bung, and reduced to many small pieces...

My parent's P38 has had a bit of a bad time lately - tried setting fire to itself twice, once with fuel, then with a locked up caliper. New petrol line, entire ignition system, new front-rear brake lines, flexis, rear calipers, disks, pads... and then the bastard still refused to run right. Lean on bank 1 permanently. Lambda sensor looked like the culprit - refused to shift from 0v despite firing on all cylinders.

So... a new sensor it is. Pop the old one out, pop new one in, job done. Or not. With myself under the car pushing with my foot against the spanner, all I managed to do was round off the nut on the sensor. With a bottle jack forcing the spanner upwards, the car was lifting before the bottle jack eventually gave up, and I rounded another side off...

Friend of a friend offered to help - I think this car may no longer be welcome there! Even cherry red with grips, it still wouldn't shift. So, cross member off, exhaust studs all removed, and the centre box clamping plates cut through. On the bench, even more heat and a 2ft bar welded to the remains of the sensor - nope. Eventually, after the welds on the bar broke twice, it started to move with some persuasion from a set of stilsons.

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Before it came out though... I noticed something:

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I sent that photo to Marty while the sensor was still being massaged, and he said something about gaskets, and I realised... there was never any gasket on this side -_- I guess, had the sensor actually come out without a fight on the car, who knows how long it would have taken to find the exhaust leak, that was likely the problem all along...

But hey. Managed to find a nut that the new sensor threaded onto nicely, which was then welded on top of the old bung. New exhaust studs, a pair of new gaskets (ho hum, totally haven't been here before, prepared for this sort of crap these days), some nice work on the centre box clamps, and one adaptive reset later, it runs properly!

21 May 2017 - 20:28

Bit of a long post, but it might be of interest... I know this is a bit of a controversial topic, and I get why. The viscous fan when working correctly, is hard to beat.

Mine however, did not. Well it did - far too much. The fan is/was fully locked up I'd say 90-95% of the time, and resulting in a loss of power, MPG and the engine never got above 85-7c. Those of you that have seen/heard my car know it isn't that quiet. No centre silencer improves the V8 rumble no end, but its no fun when your viscous fan drowns it out entirely!

The ideal electric replacement fan would, by all accounts, be the 18" Lincoln Mk VIII fan found on various vehicles across the pond. Alledgedly rated at 4000CFM or so. Getting one over there is simple, getting it over here would be £200-250... err... no.

Looking at generic aftermarket options, Spal do a 16" 'HO' high output fan, that does about 3000CFM. I couldn't even find a price on that, so declared it unobtainium. All others I've looked at seem to top out around 2000CFM. And current draw on those topped out at about 10amps, which seemed a bit too good to be true.

A bit more googling looking at OEM fans pointed me at a pretty readily available Volvo 850/940/S70 fan... the internet suggests on low speed, its around 2500CFM, and on high its around 3300CFM. Best bit is, its about £30 on ebay, and another £15 for the Volvo relay module, which is a handy box that a) handles the current of the fan on high (about 30 amps running), and you just ground either the low or high speed selection to start the fan. A handy feature is high speed always takes priority - so if you hook low speed up to say, come on with air conditioning, and then have a thermostat for engine cooling on the high speed, the high always comes on regardless of what the low speed is doing.

It's a bit smaller than the mahoosive viscous fan, but not overly so:

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I wanted a cowling/shroud that would get the fan pulling air across the whole radiator surface. Take one 600x600 network cabinet lid, and a bit of steel from one of the doors, and you're left with this:

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And some fettling later. Sadly I didn't remember to take any pictures of the cowling with the fan in place, and the pegs on the bottom that fit into the standard radiator cowling mounts. The ears on the top are used to bolt the cowling to the radiator mount brackets - so the weight is hanging off the mounts holding the radiator, rather than the radiator itself. It isn't actually that heavy anyway.

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Plenty of room!

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The relay module can be wired up using 10mm spade crimps for the positive feed - the fan plugs straight in. The ground goes to the fan directly, again a 10mm spade fits nicely. The only problem is the speed selection that has round pins. I soldered some wires onto some red bullets, crimped them a bit smaller, pushed onto the pins in the module socket, and then filled with resin. Don't want them falling off!

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Currently I don't have a thermostat - so I'm grounding the low speed before I set off and leaving it running. It's in the post...

Today it has been 17-18c all day, and I've had the fan running on low while driving around town, hooning it a bit, and letting it idle. At idle, it will keep the coolant temp down at 87c, with the A/C on too. Once I get the thermostat and can set the on/off points, it should cycle and keep the thing running proper temperature.

Best bit... I can hear my V8 again! And I no longer sound like a Nissan Navara pulling away...

24 May 2017 - 08:32

Could someone confirm the below for me? My top hose persists in leaking, and now that my thermostat is stuck open I'm going to change it for some siliconey bits.

On my Thor, the outlet pipe appears to be 32mm OD. The inlet to the radiator appears to be 36mm OD however. Does anyone have a Thor radiator sitting about that they could measure properly for me? I don't want to take the hose off just yet.

With a couple of corners and a reducer I can make that work if it is the case. I can get 32mm and 35mm ID silicone hoses, but before ordering I figured I'd check!

14 May 2017 - 19:59

Sad time. Had a phone call from my dad today (while in the back of my P38, fixing various issues, naturally...), and our red P38 had decided to get rather toasty, having lost all of its coolant rather rapidly.

Find it in a car park, and the drain bung on the radiator looks as if it had sheared off. Interestingly having retraced the 2 miles route from the last place it was parked up, we found no trace of a trail or puddle of coolant, leaving me to believe it was very hot when the bung let go, and left as steam. Anyway - popped into the Range and found a 1/2" BSP bung that did the job with some PTFE tape, and filled it up with water. Transpires the thermostat is stuck... coolant up to 96c and the radiator is cold from below the top tank to the bottom. I figure, the stat didn't open, temperature and pressure went up, and an overly tight drain plug let go first. Gave up and towed it home (flat towing a P38... that's a noticeable lump being dragged behind!)

Good news is, no bubbling in the expansion tank while letting it idle, no steam out the back, and no odd exhaust like noises from around the engine. The bad news is however, while it was running and way too hot, the first thing my dad noticed was it was making a loud clonking/knocking noise, and then he noticed it was hot... not sure if it was down on power or not.

The bad news now, is at any increase in engine speed, there is a strange squeal/squeak noise from the engine that is not coming from the belt, and I'm not sure what it is... I need to record it, but would anyone have any ideas what it might be? It certainly wasn't there a week ago when I last drove it.

28 November 2016 - 19:56

My P38 needs to spend some time parked up, and will likely only get driven once a week or so (unless we actually get some snow down this way for a change...) over the next few months. It has a good battery, and I haven't had any drain issues that I'm aware of. It does have a tracker fitted that draws a tiny bit of power however. It may be that it gets left quite a while, and I don't really want to risk the battery draining. Last time it did (before the new battery, admittedly) I was on holiday, and it went nuts, and burnt out the front door latch motors.

I have no access to mains power, or I'd just connect it up to a CTek charger, leaving me thinking about solar panels. I will be putting a cover over the car to keep it clean, so I was thinking about a panel of some size with magnetic feet lobbed on the roof on top of the cover, cable fed in under the tailgate and eventually plugged into the rear 12v socket (mine is switched, so it can be always on direct 12v).

Looking on eBay, I have many options. I presume I'd want something between 10-25w, and if I'm at the higher end, a charge controller would be a good idea.

Has anyone played with such setups? OB, I recall seeing you say somewhere you have something setup on your motorhome?