The only place for a coil spring is up Zebedee's arse
43 posts

I've checked with the engine running and still nothing.

Under my seat is what appears to be a motor, as well as a wiring loom with various plugs and connectors. All are connected except one. Also looks like a single relay under there.
Photos of under my seat

Checked the fuses and there are good fuses in both seat slots.

Do electric seats require a high line BECM usually?

As I can't find any reference to these part electric seats, I'm not really sure how they are wired in. I guess I'll have to remove the seat to get a better look and be able to trace and test.

davew wrote:

Just don't press it whilst sitting on the seat =>> Whoosh and a parachute !! (only if you have a sunroof, obviously....)
OO7 never had a P38... he had a Walther PPK....

Seriously - what happens if you press it with the engine running ?
Haha, yeah, who knows what could have happened if I did have a sunroof!

I'll see if it does anything with the engine running tomorrow.

Not all today but over the past few weeks, I've finally got around to tidying up my LPG install. I replaced the vaporiser that I think it was a bit underpowered for the car and the seals protruding the edges didn't look too healthy either.

I should also mention I replaced the MAF for a new Bosch one, as I have had some errors related to fuel trims etc and on a closer look, it was actually a cheap one, whilst I'd been thinking it was a Bosch one :/ After this I reset the adaptive values and cleared the codes, but just like usual they returned after a short drive.

Last week I then continued with the LPG, cleaned up the hose routes to the injector rails, routing them towards the rear of the engine instead of straight over the oil filler cap... Plus replaced all the injector hoses and clamps, filter etc. Then cleaned up the wiring loom route too. Finally after buying a diagnostic cable eventually, I looked at the map and found the culprit of the weird dip in revs when idling on LPG only, with AC on. It was set to cut back to petrol at below 800rpm and over 3000rpm, whilst also leaving the petrol injectors open... So what I discovered was happening was, as the AC engaged/disengaged at idle, it would sometimes cause the revs to change just enough for the LPG to switch from petrol to gas and then immediately back again... As it would jump up slightly and hit 800rpm.

So I had a look online for some info on LPG maps for the controller I have and started to tweak. First I turned off the conditions for secretly switching back to petrol at different revs. I let it run an auto map at idle to start with and things were immediately a little better (also pretty far from the previous map!), then I adjusted the map manually a little. Cleared the fault codes for the engine, reset adaptive values again and when for a short drive on both petrol and then gas. Things look good on the map and the engine felt even smoother, gear changes feel almost unnoticeable too now, when sometimes I'd feel those a little more than I liked.

Yesterday I decided to look at another job I've been putting off, which was an error for a heater blower motor not working. First check, the relays... It's missing... I've never even given the 2 missing relays a thought, as I expected they'd be for features I didn't have installed. One is a windscreen heater (makes sense, as I don't have that) but the other was a blower motor! Popped one in and all working. Cleared the fault code and also had a look back at the motronic errors and after a week, no more fuel trim errors! Looks like the LPG setup that I thought was working relatively well but just messy, was actually pretty poor.

So now with those errors sorted, not a single error code :)

But... Of course new things to do, I've noticed that my front diff is leaking a bit, with a splash and layer of diff oil slapped around the underside. Looks to be from the pinion seal area, so need to get a pinion and flange kit ordered. I checked the breather hose and that seems to not be blocked though, so probably just a worn seal.

I also poked around to see where my minor engine oil leak is coming from. For a long time I've thought it was the rear main. However I opened the inspection hole in the bell housing and surprisingly it's perfectly dry in there, only a touch of oil on the removable plate itself. It gathers on the bottom of the sump and drain bolt, or a little on the join between the sump and bell housing. It leaves a couple of drops on the driveway, but nothing major. Looking around again, maybe it's from around the front cover area? The front seal was replaced when I recently did a partial engine rebuild with new cam etc. It looks like it might be from the cam position sensor or to the side of this?! It's completely dry above the cam sensor and all the heads, water pump etc, so it's not a valley gasket or rocker cover gasket. It also doesn't seem to be from the oil cooler lines either. I'm going to replace the seal again on the cam sensor to be sure and if it's not that, maybe it's where the blank plug things are in the front cover?!

JimAHH wrote:

Looks like the button to move the seat backwards and forwards would/should be there…

It looks just like where the front button would be on a fully electric seat, I agree. I have a manual wheel to adjust the angle of the back rest, then the bar underneath to release the seat to manually adjust the whole thing back and forward. However I don't have the manual pump type leaver to adjust the base of the seat, so thought that maybe it would control that.

davew wrote:

Don't think that it is a 'Factory Fitted' item....
so maybe someone had fitted a switch to turn their (old type) Alarm Receiver on/off etc ?

Originally that's what I thought and why I've ignored it for so long, but then the other day it got me thinking and I looked under the seat, up at the wiring and it doesn't look as aftermarket as all the other things the car had when I bought it (remains of poorly installed handsfree, trackers etc).

leolito wrote:

I can guess ... can it be you have a "half-electric" seat? I have seen this from other manufacturers ... say fore-aft is electric, but the backrest is manual, something like that?

After deciding it doesn't look very aftermarket, this was my next thought, but I can't find anything similar online.

I will have to have a dig around under the seat and trace the wiring loom tomorrow and see how and where it's connected :)

My P38 is a 2001 County model, so a sort of medium spec. It doesn't have heated or electric seats, however it doesn't have a manual adjuster on the side of the seat like I've seen on other non-electric seats. There is this hole, which appears it should have a button pushed into it. I tried inserting a screwdriver today and twisting it, I can hear and feel it triggering a little microswitch in each direction, but nothing happens. Underneath the seat it's connected into some sort of wiring loom. Ignition was on when I tried it. I've looked online but can't find any reference to this type of seat with just one button. What should it do? And should there be a button in it?

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Gilbertd wrote:

ac6 wrote:

It's making me think about little extras to carry with me as well as basic tools, in case I'm far from home when something like this happens!

Been there, done it. Drove back from France in the middle of summer about 4 years ago with the drivers window stuck at a very funny angle due to the very same problem. I've drilled the holes out on mine and used M6 bolts and nyloc nuts instead of the rivets.

Haha, I'm sure you've experienced everything that could possibly happen on the P38!

Good idea, all I could find were M4 bolts yesterday, will have to get some M6 and do just that.

Not today but yesterday...

As more and more things are refurbished or fixed, new little surprises appear! Every now and then the drivers side front window gets a little sticky towards the front when closing it, usually happens on warm days, but also completely random. Occasionally it would trigger the anti trap feature and I'd have to try closing it again and it would go slow at the midway point. I've checked in the past, but nothing looked out of place with the door card alignment and it stopped doing it for ages, so never thought much more about it.

Yesterday I popped out to the shop and went to shut my windows when I got there. It triggered the anti trap, but when I tried to shut it again, there was a loud pop noise and the window went out of alignment :/
Got back home, removed the door card and had a look around, one of the rivets holding the window mechanism had popped clean out.
Luckily a nice easy fix, I didn't have a rivet big enough, but I used a short M4 screw and locking nut to fix it for now.

It's making me think about little extras to carry with me as well as basic tools, in case I'm far from home when something like this happens!

Thanks Brian, I hadn't seen they have a similar disclaimer on an exhaust... I guess just protecting themselves.
I'm a big fan of Island, prices are always fair and dispatch times very good.
Yeah, I have a multipoint LPG install on my Thor.

Looks like it is a labeling error on the nanocom itself, as you say after conversion those numbers would be way out!

Thanks for checking your MAF readings. Interesting that yours are at a similar value. I can't say the car runs poorly other than sometimes at idle, only on LPG with the AC on - the revs dip every now and then.
Now the engine has had a refresh, the LPG system is next on my list.
Errors P0175 and P0172 seem to be closely linked to a failing MAF though. I might just buy one just to try it. I'm not sure how long the current MAF has been installed, but there are some numbers on it that could suggest a 2017 build date, so potentially not that old.

Thanks Richard. I guessed at the new thermostat causing it. It's slightly hotter than I'd have preferred, as it's always nice to have a little more tolerance, but I'll just keep an eye on it for now.

Last weekend I had time to get this finished. I cleaned up the threads with a tap (a couple of the inlet manifold threads on the head needed it too) and rebuilt it, with new head gaskets. This time it went together as I'd expected the first time!

I replaced a few other parts during the rebuild, so new radiator, a couple of hoses and the thermostat.

Start up was a little scary as I needed to run the new cam in, but also keep the coolant topped up and get any air out.
I also reset the adaptive values.

The engine feels and sounds a lot smoother now, the only side effect I've noticed is that it runs a bit hotter. In the past it was around high 80's (C) to mid 90s - usually settling around 92c. However now it seems to sit from 95-99.5c - it doesn't go to 100c or over. Most of the time it sits at 96.4-97.5c. I've checked all air is out the system and everything else seems to be okay, so I'm not really sure what has caused it. I've been keeping an eye on it with the nanocom to make sure it doesn't go any higher.

Now to sort out the MAF as errors P0175 and P0172 are consistent now and P0102 has just popped up as well. It has a Bosch MAF currently and I've just attempted to clean it, but found there wasn't anything to clean!
So I understand that at idle I should see 20kg/hr roughly and then 60kg/hr at 2500rpm. I've just looked and on the nanocom (with a warm engine at idle) I see 28 and then at 2500rpm, I see 86.
Which doesn't look good, but then I noticed the nanocom says 'g/s' but in the manual it says it displays in kg/hr. I guess it's an error on their side, otherwise if it is actually in g/s, things are even worse!

Time for a new MAF by the looks of it. Any reason why Island4x4 list both the Britpart (not that I'd buy a Britpart MAF) and the Bosch as not suitable for LPG but then not sell anything marked as suitable for LPG?

Thanks Clive.

I was curious about reusing the head gasket, but my gut was to buy new. You're right, it's not worth the risk. I have to wait anyway now, as I won't have time to continue until later in the week.

As for the threads. Well if it was just the rear bottom drivers side thread, I'd blame myself and say I managed to cross thread it. However it's the passenger side rear bottom thread and another too. On the passenger side, access is good and I was sure to check the bolts were going in straight and by hand.
When I installed new head gaskets last year, I had zero issues with reinstalling the exhaust manifolds.

They were exchange heads from V8 developments. So I don't know the history. The threads are clean, so doesn't seem to be a dirt issue, more likely other damage to the thread.

It's very frustrating, as today was a waste of time in the end.
I don't want to cause any more damage by trying to tap them, but also don't like the idea of installing helicoils into a set of freshly reconditioned heads either for the same reason.

Gilbertd wrote:

Are they M10? Early heads were Imperial (5/16 UNC I think) while later ones were M8.

Whoops meant M8! Not M10

Had a bit of a frustrating day today.

Yesterday I fitted the new camshaft, reinstalled the front cover and sump etc. This morning I installed the recon heads and got everything torqued up nicely. Then the problems started. A few of the exhaust manifold bolts wouldn't go in, they'd only go so far before feeling as if they were about to cross thread. I tried for ages, but there was no way a few of them would go in nicely. Of the few that didn't feel right, 2 were the bottom rear threads. We all know how difficult the drivers side back one is to get at, which only made it worse. So the only real option was to remove the drivers side head and have a look where I can see what I'm doing. The thread just isn't quite right, the bolt will only go in so far before feeling too tight and about to cross thread.
Now I'll have to try to clean the thread up a bit with a tap and die set, but can't find an M10, so will have to pick a set up tomorrow. Hopefully that will sort it.

A bit disappointing. I never thought to check the threads before installing the heads, as they were reconditioned, I thought they'd be okay. At least using head studs means it was easier to get the heads on and off.

Should the head gaskets be swapped too now, as they've been torqued down already or can I reuse them?

Thanks Clive and Brian, that's just what I had in mind. Turns out I don't need any though. I bought an impact wrench and decided to test it out straight away on the crankshaft bolt. It worked straight away, didn't even need to hold the pulley... Maybe I was overthinking how difficult I expected removing that bolt to be!
Hopefully your tools will help someone else 😀
I didn't want to continue to drop the sump and then end up putting it back on loose to prevent any mess until the new parts arrive, so left it at that for now.
I've ordered a new camshaft and tappets, plus all the other bits and pieces I need and hopefully can continue at the weekend.

So after a bit of delay, busy with other things, I've made some progress on this.

ARP studs and all the gaskets etc were ordered and then I've just been waiting for a set of recon heads to arrive from V8 developments, which arrived this week! Today I've stripped the engine down and the heads off. The head bolts were actually all very similar in feeling when cracking them loose and the head gaskets looked in very good condition, so maybe I did a better job than I originally thought... And maybe the head bolts weren't too bad either.

However upon removing a couple of tappets, they are pretty worn, some are mostly flat, but others are well dished. Especially the ones around the main 2 problem cylinders. The camshaft is showing signs of wear too.

So time for a new camshaft and tappets. I'm guessing removing the radiator and fans is enough to take the camshaft out?
Anyone recommend a camshaft and tappets other than the genuine ones?
I think I might replace the radiator too, as it's starting to crumble a bit around the end where the top hose pushes on.
At which point the thermostat may as well be replaced too! Already replaced the water pump last year.

The cylinders themselves looked okay to me, I can't see or feel any ridges around the liners. None looked steam cleaned this time (last time the front 2 cylinders had been cleaned by the leaking head gasket). Hopefully these are okay and the rings are fine.

So camshaft, tappets, timing chain, radiator, thermostat, drop sump and replace the gasket, new front cover gasket, plus all the other gaskets from the heads up as originally planned. Anything else I should look at replacing?

It's all a bit of a daunting task really. How do I get the bolt of the crankshaft pulley off - is there some sort of tool to stop the pulley and engine just turning?

Just looking to order a few things to get started on this when I have a free weekend.
The ARP stud kit appears to be part no. 157-4301, however it seems the only place in the UK with stock in Rimmer Bros and they don't mention a part number... https://rimmerbros.com/Item--i-RB7728--SelectedCurrency-1?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIo675kZnV9gIVR7DtCh3D9gWcEAQYFCABEgJf2PD_BwE - This seems to be the same kit though, anyone ordered this kit before from them?

As for the heads, I have decided the best option is to go for a set of reconditioned ones on an exchange basis, that way it minimises time needed to get this done and I get a set of cleaned heads, skimmed and tested and no need to worry about valve seals etc. Has anyone used ACR Deeside before? Not the cheapest, but seem to have good reviews and are relatively local to me. Any other recommendations for a decent set of reconditioned heads?

Now a dumb question:
Is there anything else I should be aware of using studs instead of stretch bolts? I guess clearance to get the heads on is still ok, without removing the engine?

True! I'm confusing myself with it now, by overthinking...

Wet compression test is next to try, it got dark before I got chance earlier!

I'm hoping it is the valves, if so I'm thinking of purchasing refurbished heads and a set of ARP head studs, that way I can ensure a better install, rather than using stretch bolts again.

I would of course look at the crankshaft etc too this time and check the engine condition a bit more thoroughly.

Yeah top hat liners would be nice but then it takes me back away from something I can do myself on the driveway.

Will see what the results of a wet compression test reveal.

I eventually found the time to look further into this today. First I checked for spark on cylinder 3 which was the one I'd been having issues with and all was good. So then I took it out for a short drive with the Nanocom connected and for the first couple of miles it didn't report any misfires. Then once it was up to temperature, they started showing on cylinder 3 at idle.

Back at home, I pulled the fuses for the fuel pump and ignition coils, jammed the throttle open and started testing the compression, these are the results:
Cyl. 8 - 150psi
Cyl. 6 - 135psi
Cyl. 4 - 145psi
Cyl. 2 - 150psi

Cyl. 7 - 150psi
Cyl. 5 - 125psi
Cyl. 3 - 50psi
Cyl. 1 - 150psi

So as expected, cylinder 3 is way out, with cylinder 5 down too.
Cylinder 4 and 6 aren't perfect, but just about within 10%
The compression tester may not be the most accurate, but at least it's highlighted the problem cylinders.

I still have the issue with the lower manifold bolt close to cylinder 3 and 5 in mind, but now also suspecting the stretch bolts may not be up to standard either... Would a poor fit of the lower intake manifold be possible to cause such low compression on it's own?

I've tested with one of those exhaust gas fluid tests, it did change colour after a while and some revs, but not as quick or as much of a colour change as it did last year.

I need to do a compression test next.

I'm currently going through all the options in my mind.
A rebuild is probably overkill, but it would be nice to know everything has been reconditioned and seals etc replaced.
The quickest solution is probably heads out and re-skim/refurb. Also drop the sump, check the camshaft etc whilst they are at the shop for a refurb. That's very tempting at the moment and just live with the minor oil leak.

One of the first jobs I had to do on the P38 was rear bags.
I had no problem with the bottom, but the top of the bags, with clips removed were stuck solid. I had to give up for the day and buy a bigger pry bar! With a good soak of WD40 and a decent size pry bar, I managed to release them. Once out, fitting the new ones is very quick.