Monday, August 25, 2008

New engine arrives

In keeping with the theme of this 'restoration' of the Starion, the retrieval of the engine went about as smoothly as a graph of my blood pressure/anger level throughout the day.

I was meant to pick it up on Monday, however, ended up picking it up at noon on a Bank Holiday Sunday. This meant arranging a van and an engine crane within three hours of getting out of bed. This was pre-arranged a few days before, but both were un-arranged such is life. This meant I had to get my engine and wheels in the boot of my Astra, which is already scraping on the arches. You can imagine what it was like on the unbelievably crappy un-kept poverty spec roads of Rock Ferry (where I picked it up).
I shredded a tyre, the cabin stank of rubber. I now have the space saver on the back, and the car looks muscular and impressive (yet, strangely, handles better than the widey spare???).

So, I finally get my poor car back to my folk's house, which must now be feeling a bit worn out by now. I remove the wheels from the car and put them alongside the pile of wheels in the corner of the driveway. This was going to be tricky I thought. While I've lifted heavier engines, I've never had to figure out a way of removing an engine from a boot two foot off the floor. I considered taking the seats out, and moving it out of the front doors, but instead got some wood and a chain.
Levering the engine out resulted in a snapped plank, and nearly breaking my neck thanks to the stack of tyres I was levering the wood against. By now, the engine had puked the remaining oil out of the dipstick pipe, and had flooded the boot and the rear sear well with the remaining coolant. I swear I am never using this car for these types of job again. I miraculously gained some strange stamina and manouvred the engine around the boot in preparation to pull it out, and over the lip of the boot. I built a platform using tyres and a board of wood. I then pulled the engine from the car, and eased it onto the platform! It was out of the car! I then moved the car forward, to prevent the bugger engine from somehow easing itself back in the boot. Another platform was built further down and the engine was eased down onto this. It was now 1 foot off the floor! A bread crate was produced, and the engine dropped into this and dragged to the safety of the corner of the driveway! Success!

In the mini-hiatus' of desperately trying to remove the engine, I changed the wheels over. I am pleased with the girth of the wheels at the back. There are two 1mm spacers on the back, but they're going to scrape on the arches (probably), but they're wide enough without. :)

I removed all my old wheels to my garage and tidied up. Tommorow I will pick up my ebay win engine crane and continue with the transplant!

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