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kav kav is offline
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The Canary Files: 1969 911T reworked.

Well after 18 months of enjoying my yellow 1969 Porsche 911T with all it's 'quirks' I have decided to take the plunge into the deep end and revitalize the Canary.

A little bit of history: I've always been interested in cars from an early age. As a boy I would get a matchbox car as a bribe everytime I 'agreed' to go on an all day shopping excursion with my Mum to Newcastle city center. I would build elaborate cars from Lego with suspension and engines only to drive them down the stairs and watch them smash into a million pieces so I could build another. My interest really got serious when my Father and I sat down one Christmas and watched a movie called 'The Italian Job' with Michael Caine and Noel Coward. The opening sequence with the red Lamborghini Miura winding it's way through the alps, the silver Aston getting crushed and the Mini's racing over and under Turin blew my mind! Cars are cool, I'm in!

Growing up in an industrial town in the North East of England during the 70's with little opportunities for a working class lad was about as far as you could get from driving Lamborghini's in the Alps. Around that same time a little movie called 'Star Wars' hit the local Odean Cinema and again, mind blown! I told my Mother that's what I wanted to do, I wanted to make the Millennium Falcon fly on the screen. I spent hours in the city Library reading all I could about how they did special effects in the movies. In the 80's computer graphics started to appear in movies, I thought that looked interesting and maybe is a way into the industry. I studied Computer Animation at college and got a job in London doing mostly shampoo and tampon commercials. In the mid 90's I applied for my dream job at 'Industrial Light & Magic' in San Francisco, the company who created the effects for 'Star Wars', stupidly they said yes and I've worked there ever since. I recently accomplish my goal when I animated the Millennium Falcon doing the loop-d-loop in the new Star Wars trailer, my Mum is ever so proud!

Back to cars: With college, London, starting a new life in the US and having two beautiful girls it never seemed the right time to buy a classic car like those I had seen in the movies as a kid. Then the prices of classic European cars went through the roof! it looked like I had missed my opportunity of owning something. About 2 years ago while animating another Spaceship this time the star-ship Enterprise my coordinator Karen saw I was browsing the interwebs for old Porsche 911's, she said her husband had an older Porsche he was looking to sell. My head popped up like a little Meerkat on guard, what year and model? It's a yellow '74 was the reply, oh that's nice and I sank back into my ergo chair. Months went by and I slowly watched the prices of early 911's go up and up, I bid on a few cars, went to see a couple on Craigslist but nothing fell into place. I was ready to give up when Karen came back into my office and said, remember that Porsche I told you about, well I got it wrong it's a '69. A beam of light hit me, I looked up towards the light and there was the little baby Jesus nodding his head. I got that feeling in my water and I knew this was the right car for me.

Karen brought the 911T into work for me to check out and to my joy it was a very original car. It was all matching numbers with 189,000 miles on the clock. The car looked very solid, no signs of rust but the engine, suspension and interior were showing their age and mileage. The car was originally ordered in 'Canary Yellow' a special order color for '69 but this was not the original paint and it was not very well done. I knew the 'Canary' needed a lot of tlc and I needed to get the car at a good price so I could attempt to fix the issues. I talked at length with Karen's husband about the Porsche and my enthusiasm for the car got the better of him and I bought the 911 for a very reasonable price in today's crazy market. Another goal accomplished, owning a classic 911!

More about the car. The Canary started life in Florida and found it's way to California about a decade before me. I am the 4th owner and it has been well looked after over it's life with plenty of paperwork to back that up. Looking at the COA it was a well equipt car. The options were: Leather interior, Koni shocks, stabilizers - 15" front 16" rear, 911S instrument panel and fuel tank, ignition lock, tinted glass, 15in Fuchs and special paint. There is no real rust that I can find (yet) without diving into it further. The engine although cared for (regular maintenance, Carrera chain tensioners etc) is showing signs of age. The suspension is loose to say the least and the interior is shabby.

I decided to not rush into anything straight away, just drive it as it is, enjoy it, get to know the car for all it's good and bad. So for the past 18 months that's what I've done, I found the car leaks oil at an alarming rate, clouds of blue smoke follow me where ever I go and there are some questionable noises coming from all corners but I don't really care, I just love driving it! I love the way it sounds and the way it smells, it makes me feel like that Italian bloke driving his Miura through the Alps with his cigarette hanging out the corner of his mouth.

Now I have that out of my system it's time to take the next step and breath new life into the Canary. The plan is simple, fix what needs to be fixed and add a bit of flair to make it my own. I have a limited budget so I need to be smart and spread the love around. The Elephant in the room is the engine, I plan on dropping the engine and taking a look. Hopefully I can do a top end rebuild to fix the issue and get a few more enjoyable miles out of the Canary without blowing the bank. The transmission shifts well and will get some upgraded fluid and new throw-out bearing, I will replace the clutch while I'm in there.

I made a little video to show some of the finer details of the car and introduce myself (go HD!). I am no mechanic but very willing to try so I will be asking a lot of sometimes stupid questions. I plan on posting more videos and pictures of the work as I go along. I'm very excited to start the transformation of the Canary, thanks for listening.

-Kav.


















Last edited by kav; 11-24-2017 at 09:01 PM..
Old 03-23-2015, 08:22 AM
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Looks good. have fun. I'm in the same boat as you but with an '85 911. I've been tinkering for the last 3 years with the car and am about to start my first engine drop this weekend!
Old 03-23-2015, 03:31 PM
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Subscribed! I really enjoyed reading your post and watching your excellent video as my 911 story is similar to yours (dreaming of 911 since boyhood, acquisition being delayed by life getting in the way, seeing the price of long hoods increase beyond my budget, etc...). I've owned my 1970 911T for 11 months now and have done quite a few small fixes but I'm not brave enough to drop the engine yet, although I will need to do it eventually because my engine smokes also. I will be following your thread attentively!

As you probably know, there is a vast quantity of information on this forum. I've found answers to my questions, have received advice from members around the globe and met great people offering their help and parts. Pelican has become a big part of my 911 experience. Here is an excellent thread where the owner of a '69 911T restores his 'Rat' with tons of information and photographs. Very well written, a real pleasure to read:

Saving the "Rat" - Restoring a 69T
Old 03-23-2015, 04:04 PM
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Great story and good luck with the project. Beautiful car!
Old 03-23-2015, 04:21 PM
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fun project
Old 03-23-2015, 04:21 PM
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Paul, great backstory, fun video and lovely car! I'm just surprised that the locals haven't tarred and feathered you for all that blue smoke. Also cool to see another English lad living the great American Lifestyle; I've been here longer than you and appreciate the country profoundly, my project is an 82 SC also in need of engine work plus I have an Alfa I've loved for years.

Smart move not ripping the car apart all at once. I believe that's the biggest mistake blokes make, because they watch too much Overhaulin'.

Remember your own safety when working on the car, including eyes, ears, toes, lungs and hands, buy good quality tools and remind yourself to walk away when you become frustrated or need to pee. That's my advice.

I look forward to watching your progress. Best regards, John in CT.
Old 03-23-2015, 05:28 PM
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TR TR is offline
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Yoh Bro

My Advice
Fix the motor, tranny, clutch and pedal box refit them so the car is still drivable then bit by bit do all the other items. Do not dismantle the whole car unless you are prepared to throw buckets of money at the project. I have learnt from doing many cars that whilst they drive you still can have fun. When you dismantle a car you are always waiting for funds to proceed and take it from me those projects take forever. I adopted this procedure with may latest 914 project and it was only off the road for a very short time. I eliminated any rust and I'm only concentrating on mechanicals cosmetics will be last if at all.
Cheers and have fun.
TR
Old 03-23-2015, 05:56 PM
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Engine Drop

After much anticipation and concern that I may cock this right up I started the process of removing the engine and transmission from the Canary! I followed the instructions in Wayne's book: '101 Projects For Your Porsche 911' plus added a few extra steps to remove the drive train as one unit. The process went something like this:

- I ran the car to get the oil nice and warm.
- Emptied the oil from the oil sump and oil tank.
- Removed both of my batteries.
- Labelled and removed all the relay's I could find as I don't know which one is the for the fuel pump.
- Jacked the car up as high as my jack plus a block of wood would take it.
- Placed it on jack stands under the torsion bar covers in front of the rear wheels.
- Removed the rear bumper for more clearance.
- Removed the exhaust because I could.
- Disconnected the hard and rubber oil lines.
- Disconnected the clutch cable.
- Labelled and disconnected the starter electrical connections.
- Had a cup of tea and a coconut macaroon.
- Disconnected the reverse backup switch.
- Disconnected the speed cable nut from the rear of the transmission.
- Disconnected the heater hoses from the heat exchangers.
- Removed the pin in the shift coupler from inside the car (under the plate between the rear seats).
- Disconnected the fuel lines from the fuel pump to the carbs.
- Forget to take enough pictures as I got quite excited at my progress.
- Disconnected the main wiring harness, which is labeling and removing everything you can find that ends up on the engine itself.
- Got very intimidated by the alternator wiring at the side wall and removed the fan and alternator off the engine instead.
- Disconnected the breather hoses.
- Had another cup of tea.
- Disconnected the accelerator linkage bar.
- Removed the rear sway bar (forgot to mention this in the video below, oh well)
- Disconnected the copper ground strap from the transmission to the body of the car.
- Removed the transaxles.
- Supported the weight of the engine and transmission on my jack plus the block of wood.
- Removed the two transmission cross member bolts.
- Nervelessly removed the two engine mount bolts.
- Lowered the engine and transmission onto a furniture cart and pulled it away from the car!
- Had a shower and a beer! (not at the same time).

It's out!










Last edited by kav; 11-14-2017 at 08:41 AM.. Reason: Add more images.
Old 04-11-2015, 08:41 PM
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TR TR is offline
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Should have cleaned the engine before you started, makes it easier and cleaner. Man you were freaking me out by the end of the video.

Last edited by TR; 04-11-2015 at 09:33 PM..
Old 04-11-2015, 09:28 PM
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Hi
If you are going to work on your car safely you need a few things. High lift jack which can take the motor and tranny without it falling off. I also use a modified motorcycle jack.
I have a lot of jack stands but I often back it up by putting the wheel rims under the body chocked with timber so if the car falls it can not hit the deck and crush me. I do this because a teacher at school was terribly injured in the exact same circumstances and warned us about the dangers of jacks--that was in 1974.

Rule number 1, keep wifey happy.You need some overalls and nitrile gloves. Your wife will get pretty pissed with you ruining your cloths and dragging grease through the house. I don't know what's in it but the bacterial soap from the 99cent store gets grease off your hands better than any auto-store product.

Rule 2, don't take things off the car you don't need to and if you do label everything. Put small pieces in labelled sandwich bags. Trust me you will work out why when you go to put the car back together.
Old 04-11-2015, 09:53 PM
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Clean Up

Today was about cleaning up the mess. I separated the transmission from the engine, removed the starter, carbs, shroud, engine tin, etc. There was a small ecosystem going on in certain parts of the engine crevasses! I mopped the garage floor clean of all the grease and dirt. I then plugged any holes in the engine that I didn't want water to enter. My youngest daughter Lily and I power washed the transmission, we both got soaked through and there was gunk all over the driveway. Another lesson on this journey learned!

For the engine I pushed it up the driveway on the furniture cart to the curb. I got my full rain gear on with rain boots and face shield and power washed the gunk away spraying and scrubbing with engine degreaser as I went. 2 hours and 6 cans later I was done!




















Last edited by kav; 11-14-2017 at 08:48 AM..
Old 04-12-2015, 10:05 PM
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Last edited by kav; 11-14-2017 at 08:50 AM..
Old 04-12-2015, 10:08 PM
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Starting the spend

With the engine out and cleaned up somewhat it was time to order some new parts and tools to get the rebuild going. Like I said I have a limited budget and I do want to get the Canary back on the road before the funds run dry. I sold my vintage Vespa scooter on eBay which went surprisingly well and I ended up with 'no questions asked' 10 grand to play with. I also add around $500 a month to the kitty to keep things a float. I know that doesn't sound like a big budget to rebuild a tired 911 engine as well as other things so doing as much as I can myself and I'm trying to be smart about where I spend the real dollars.

So I ordered a bunch of necessary parts & tools.

It worked out like this:

Jack Pad $22
Clutch Kit, 3-Piece $398.75
Aluminum Washer - Oil Drain Plug $0.25
Support Bushing Clutch Release Bearing $10
Pilot Bearing $50.25
Pivot Bushing for Clutch Release Fork $6.50
Crankshaft Seal 65 X 85 X 10 mm $32.50
Cylinder Holding Nut Set (6 pieces) $59.95
Piston Compressor Kit, 73mm-111mm range $69.95
Acid Brushes, Set of six $6.40 (waste of money!)
Clutch Alignment Tool $8.85
Heavy Duty Engine Holding Fixture, P201 $270.00
Cam Socket, with 1/2 Drive $37.80
46mm Crows Foot, 1/2 drive $61.70
Dial Indicator Gauge Holder, Z Block $36.10 (Not sure I need this now)
Feeler Gauge (.004 inches) $5.40
8mm Allen Extra Long Socket, Heat Exchanger Nut Removal Tool, 911 $29.40 (waste of money, could have bought a tool for $10)
Weber Carburetor Rebuild Kit for 40 IDA3C x 2 $143.22
Swepco CV Joint Grease, enough for four joints, 14.4 oz x2 $22.58
Swepco 201 80w/90 Transmission Fluid 1 Gallon $61.07
12-Point / 12mm Socket Tool, 1/2-inch Drive $18.95

That's a total with shipping and tax of $1519.21 and not a whole lot to show for it!




Last edited by kav; 11-14-2017 at 08:51 AM..
Old 05-05-2015, 07:04 PM
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Hi Paul, thanks for posting, interesting story and excellent original car.
I am curious about where did all that oil on top of the engine came from, What is the most provable source? Could it be from the engine's oil bleeder's gasket or it not being tight enough? Maybe others can comment.
Jose
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Old 05-06-2015, 06:02 AM
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Kav,

I am up valley from you in Sonoma. If you need a helping hand, please let me know. Although I have not pulled the engine/tranny out of my 86 Carrera, I pretty much do eveything myself.

Great "Tweety" car!!

Serge
Old 05-06-2015, 07:13 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nene View Post
Kav,

I am up valley from you in Sonoma. If you need a helping hand, please let me know. Although I have not pulled the engine/tranny out of my 86 Carrera, I pretty much do eveything myself.

Great "Tweety" car!!

Serge
Thanks Serge that's very kind!
Old 05-06-2015, 08:12 AM
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Great story and videos. I look forward to following your progress.
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Old 05-06-2015, 08:49 AM
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So far, so good. I see you referenced the 101 projects book - do you have Wayne's engine book as well? If not, get yourself one. Between that book and numerous threads on the engine rebuilding forum I was able to do my top-end over with a high degree of confidence and great results. In my many years of working on cars it was the most satisfying project I've ever done.

TR gave you good advice - small ziploc bags and coveralls will be two investments you'll thank yourself for making over and over.

Good luck!
GK
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Old 05-06-2015, 09:36 AM
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Great story and I wish you happy trails but as you appear to have posted pictures of you degreasing with a non-environmental friendly chemical and then washing all that gunk into a public city storm drain (in CA no less) you *may* not want that used as evidence against you.... just a thought!
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Old 05-06-2015, 09:51 AM
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KAV!

This is great. Stories like this are very inspirational to me as a fellow enthusiast who works on his car. My 911 is the only car I've ever felt anxious and nervous working on (value/rarity of parts) and to see you dive right it...great stuff.

I can't believe only 5 cans of degreaser did the trick!
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Old 05-06-2015, 11:20 AM
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