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Working on it

Minor update

This weekend I:
  • Pumped the water out of the inspection pit in the garage (it's below the water table and the walls leak).
  • Got underneath Fenchurch and had a closer look at her underside. Discovered a couple of weak spots that are going to need small patches welding in. Got a bit worried about some rot on the driver's side of the cross-member, posted a question to the Morris Minor Owner's Club forums, and was reassured that it's nothing to worry about.
  • Replaced the fuel pipe. It didn't fix the problem with no fuel getting to the pump, but there was plenty of suction at the far end of the pipe, which only left the pickup pipe in the tank itself as the possible culprit.
  • Removed the boot floor, then the petrol tank. Had a look inside and found that it was coated with some kind of hardened varnish-like gunge, including the strainer on the end of the pickup pipe. Also, the fuel gauge sender was seized.
  • Tried a strong solvent and fresh petrol, neither of which would attack the gunge in the tank. Dug out the steam-cleaner and steamed the inside of the tank for a few hours. This softened the gunge but didn't remove it. Used fresh petrol and pebbles to scour the softened gunge off. This also battered several holes in the strainer, allowing fuel to flow through it again. Not ideal, but there is a filter on the fuel pump and modern fuel is very clean anyway.
  • Wire brushed the outside of the tank and painted it.
  • Removed the remains of the broken rear door handle.
  • Removed the old knackered wing mirrors and aerial.
  • Fitted a new barrel in the ignition switch, but it didn't fix it as the mechanism itself is knackered - will have to get a new one for about £20.
  • Took each wheel off in turn, examined the brakes, and made a list of what parts I'm going to have to buy to rebuild them. I've already bought a brake pipe kit, but annoyingly it turned out to only include the copper pipes - the rubber hoses are a separate item and cost nearly £40 extra. I have an unused master cylinder but I suspect it's been sat around for a long time based on the green gunk inside, so I'm going to replace the seals (the bore is smooth). I have one new front cylinder (out of four). I have both the old rear cylinders, but I haven't took them apart yet to see if they're any good. Various other parts are missing as a result of the former owner stopping part way through rebuilding the system.

I'm getting more convinced that the radiator really is leaking, as the water is getting out somehow and it's not coming from the hoses or the drain cock any more.

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