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Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Brisbane, Oz
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Wierd clutch/starting problem

Hi, I've recently bought a non-running 73 2.0. Appologies for the length, but I've a small problem with the clutch...

Before starting it I wanted to turn the engine over by hand. I removed the plugs, jacked up a wheel and selected 5th gear. No matter how far I turned the wheel, or in which gear, the rotor arm never moved.

The resistance was different in each gear so they appeared to engage.

The previous owner said the clutch was replaced as one of the the last things he did to the car, some years ago. I assumed it was misadjusted and disconnected the cable. There is free play in the linkage.

Still nothing from turning the wheel.

So I dropped the grearbox out. There is a connection between the input shaft and the outputs so the gearbox seems fine.

The clutch plate does look brand new. The pressure plate has done a few miles but looks quite new. Could have been drive just a few miles after the clutch replacement and has gained a little surface rust since then. There was a loose bolt on the clutch cover which was a little alarming! Aside from that everything looked fine.

When I turned the clutch cover the flywheel turned (as you would expect) and so did the rotor arm. I took the opportunity to turn the engine over by hand to move the marine storage seal around the cylinders. I didn't want to try the starter motor until there had been some lubrication. The engine turned quite freely.

Whilst it was out, I bench tested the starter motor. It seemed to work fine. It's been a long time since I tried one on the bench so I'm not sure it span as much as I'd like, the the solenoid threw out the dog and it span quite quickly. The torque of it starting up was enought to make it move a little, but not a huge amount. I was only using 2.5mm wires, but that should be enough for a test.

Everything went back together and the stater motor won't turn over the engine. Curses. There is a good clunk as it engages and the battery voltage drops from 12.5 to 11.5V (measured off the loom, not the battery). But no turning. The plugs are still out. Connections are all cleaned up

Also, when I jack up one wheel & put it in gear I could only get half a turn from the rotor arm. Now it's back to appearing like the clutch is disconnected.

What is wrong with my clutch? And as a secondary question, do I need a new starter motor?

Thanks, Steve
Old 10-03-2002, 03:58 AM
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I am not sure what you mean by rotor arm aonly turning 1/2 a turn ?? Put the transmission in Nueteral and try to start the car.
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Old 10-03-2002, 10:48 AM
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Which is where I'd got to when the starter motor won't turn the engine...

It seems I can turn the engine without a gearbox. But once the gearbox is attached the engine can't be turned by the wheels or the starter.

When I say the roto made half a turn I meant that when I started to turn the raised wheel it started to turn (as you would expect). But then the roto stopped and no matter how far I turned the wheel it wouldn't move again.

Steve
Old 10-03-2002, 03:44 PM
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Steve - Are you certain that you have the correct pressure plate? It should look like this. There
are other pressure plates ( VW bus, IIRC ) that will bolt up but they have a collar on the release
fingers. As you bolt up the trans the collar may contact the guide tube for the release bearing,
disengageing the clutch and locking the engine. Loosen the bolts, seperate the eng and
trans 1/2" and see if the engine turns.
Old 10-05-2002, 04:44 AM
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Or the friction disk (clutch plate) is installed backwards.

When you engage a starter off the engine, if you don't hold it down, it will try to twist itself around the armature centerline. If yours just sits there, with minimal movement, you don't have enough to turn the engine.

Take the starter to a local FLAPs and have them test it.
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Last edited by Ron Meier; 10-05-2002 at 06:44 AM..
Old 10-05-2002, 06:40 AM
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I pulled the gearbox back half an inch and lo and behold the engine turned! So I removed it completely and found the cover to look almost exactly like the photo from Peilcan parts. Wierd.

I pulled the cover and checked the friction plate. I can't see how this could be wrong - it's flat side to flywheel.

Most interestingly the clutch shows signs of being driven for a reasonable distance - the cross hatching is visible on the pressure plate & flywheel, but it's slightly worn (as is the friction plate). This all suggests it was working at some point.

So I reassmebled the clutch & put the gearbox back. Except it won't go back on... Can't close up that last half inch... The bottom went on enough to put nuts on the end of the studs. But the top in half an inch away and won't budge.

However, there is drive again when it's half an inch away :-)

I guess I get to remove the box again and work out what I did wrong - I guess the clutch isn't centred as it was a home made centering tool.

Stripped the starter motor while I was at it. It's all shiney and new inside so it's been reconditioned recently.

Thanks for the advice so far.
Steve
Old 10-06-2002, 02:51 AM
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Steve,

I don't have a answer to what your problem is but I did have my transaxle on and off my car about a dozen times while installing my conversion. The last 1/2" requires some wiggling while pushing toward engine at the same time...... you might want to enlist a friend to help.

My trans. and engine were out of car and made this easier than your setup. On my first couple of attempts I gave thought to using the bolts/nuts to draw up the last 1/2" but knew better. The wiggling while pushing came to mind and worked the other dozen or so times I had to do this.

I also think your clutch is centered correctly if you are able to get it in as far as you describe.

My problem was due to the wrong number of washers installed behind clutch fork pivot ball, where too many washers caused the throw out bearing to engage pressure plate at all times.

If your going to pull the gearbox out, I'd check the T/O bearing for proper installation. You've either got problems with the front end (clutch/pressure plate) or the back (T/O bearing). Removal of throwout bearing/pivot fork would be one way to eliminate as a source of your problems.

If you can install the gearbox properly with T/O bearing remove, why not install your starter and get the engine spinning with plugs removed. "Marine oil in cylinders" might be causing some of your binding as it tries to remove itself from jugs......depending on how much was used.

John
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Old 10-06-2002, 05:14 AM
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Hi John,

I was thinking about putting it back in without the release mech - as you say there are only two parts that can be wrong!

I'm tempted to drop the whole engine as I'll have better visibility. But I'm doing quite well at getting the box back in single-handed. When it's all lined up and half way in I sit on the floor behind the car and push with my feet on the rear mount brackets. This way I can push, wiggle and lift all at the same time.

The marine oil is special stuff for storage - I wanted to put oil in the barrels but thought it would only run to the bottom. This left me with the option of rotating the whole car on a spit to lube the whole barrel - the car has been standing for 10 years.

Marine storage seal is a foaming oil. I was able to fill the piston with foaming oil to lube all the surfaces. The theory is that any excess will be fired out through the open plugs when I get the starter on it.

Friends swear by it for starting stored engines. The foaming action makes it break through gunk better. The same principal as foaming upholstory cleaners.


Cheers, Steve
Old 10-06-2002, 05:33 AM
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Steve,

I remember one of my v8 conversion buddies running into a similar problem several months back. He had too many washers stacked behind the pivot ball which caused the "fork" to make contact with pressure plate......or "clutch cover" as you call it. Talking with my friend this afternoon, he used the tranny to motor bolts to draw up that last 1/4" or so that would not go by hand. It was not until he started his engine did he "hear" the problem. Maybe this is not possible with the stock 914 clutch pieces.........the v8 stuff is beefier in certain areas.

I've also heard of the fork being replaced with a similar (911?) fork that was not a duplicate of the 914. Again, same problem with fork rubbing pressure plate. Can you take some pics of your pieces when they are removed. Maybe we can do some comparisons. I'm sure guys like Brad could spot the wrong parts in a pic.

John
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Old 10-06-2002, 03:38 PM
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Woohoo!! It's fixed. Don't ask me what I did. I just pulled the gearbox back off the engine, lined it up again, swore in a combination of languages and fake accents (tech tip - never let the fake accent match the language you swear in) and pushed it back on.

It went straight on, there is now drive. Interestingly the clutch lever was not in the way doing up the belhousing nut - it was at the other end of the travel before.

All I can assume is the previous owner pulled the box after the clutch was replaced and misaligned it on replacement. I then managed the same feat - what ever it was.

Thanks for all the advice.

Steve
Old 10-07-2002, 03:57 AM
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