Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Ground Strap to the Hood

Since I'd been thinking about ground straps, it was time for the strap from the body to the hood to go.
Problem was, the hinge bolts on the hood were rusted in place, including the one that held the strap. It took quite a bit of careful tapping and generous amounts of WD40 to loosen the fastener. The next question was, what would happen if I removed the bolt completely? The PO who installed the old ground strap had used an open-ended strap, in order to place it on the bolt head without first removing the bolt. But I took a chance, or not, and the cage nut in back of the bolt stayed in place. I installed the new strap and painted around the hinge where I'd sanded the black paint away to insure proper contact.

Monday, May 14, 2012

New Gas Line

While researching possible causes of my fuel delivery issue, I read that the old BMW cloth-covered lines are porous and can start to suck air when they age. All the lines in my car are relatively new, with the exception of the hose from the fuel tank to the hard line under the rear firewall. The old hose looked pretty bad once removed from the trunk of the car (after I disconnected the battery - better safe than sorry).
I replaced it with a $4 piece of hose from NAPA.
I swear the car starts faster and feels like the fuel pump is working more efficiently but perhaps I'm imagining the extent of the benefit. The true test will come when the fuel level drops below half a tank. We'll see if we "run out of gas" again.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Out of Gas but Grounded

For the very first time today I ran out of gas, going uphill on an arterial road. Luckily I was able to back down the deserted street and maneuver into a large parking lot beside a bank. At first I was unclear as to why the car was no longer getting fuel delivered to the engine but the solution was soon obvious. The interesting back-story is that I recently installed a ground strap from the battery to the car chassis in an effort to quiet down a bouncing gas gauge. Well, the gauge stopped flickering and the new development was so exciting I forgot to monitor the actual fuel level! And so I found myself waiting for AAA truck and a gallon of petrol. A guy stopped by to chat about the car; he owned a 1972 Datsun 510, he said, and we compared notes while I looked sheepish. The AAA tow truck arrived and the driver put $5 worth of gas in the tank. A shot of fuel direct to the carb enabled the engine to fire long enough for the mechanical fuel pump to do its job and off I went, chagrined.
Shiny new ground strap proves to be a distraction from careful driving habits POSTSCRIPT: I discovered that I still had half a tank of gas when the tank supposedly went dry. Time to drain the tank and clean the sludge from the screen at the bottom of the fuel sender.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

A Visitor

My friend Jessup dropped by today in his new 1976 2002. A fine sunny afternoon enhanced the viewing.
He recently bought the car, which has minimal rust, a Weber 32/36 in excellent running order, and like-new Recaro seats in front. Not to mention a 5-speed swap. The '02 also has a sunroof, which may or may not come in handy much, here in Seattle.

Friday, May 4, 2012

NK from an 02

At the store yesterday I ran into my friend Riley, who has restored this '76 2002 over the last year or so. I thought, too bad I don't have a camera to take a few pics of his car, but turns out that he was armed with his own device at the time.