Glowing Report

Up at the crack of half nine this morning and out to work on Herman. I thought I’d take a look at the glowplugs first, coz I read on the ever-informative Brickyard Forum yesterday that the glowplug light on the dashboard can light up and go out as expected, quite independently of whether or not the glowplugs are actually working. So not exactly the most helpful member of the instrument panel family then!

Anyway, up with the seats, off with the engine cover and I connected my circuit tester into the wiring which directly supplies the glowplugs. I turned on the ignition and tried not to be afraid of the frightening power of unharnessed electricity as I watched the circuit tester report a whopping 0,07volts pouring into the glowplugs. No wonder Herman finds it so hard to get up in the mornings!

Yes - nearly two thirds of a tenth of a volt, coursing through the glowplugs!
Yes - nearly two thirds of a tenth of a volt, coursing through the glowplugs!

I flipped open the glowplug fusebox, on the side of the engine and immediately spotted the culprit; one of the two 50amp fuses was gone.

Dead fuse
Dead fuse

So off I went on an ‘anywhere-but-fecking-Halfords’ mission to try and score some suitable 50amp fuses. I tried a couple of local parts shops first. Autocom on Darnley St. had a solitary 50amp fuse, but of the plugin blade type, so no use to me. They recommended I try Middletons, on Lucy St. which specialises in auto-electrics [I’ve had a few alternators repaired by them in the past]. So I went there and scored a box of ten replacement 50amp fuses for £1,36.

New fuse fitted
New fuse fitted

Back home and I fitted the new fuse and then switched on the ignition. Thankfully the fuse didnae immediately blow again, which was what I’d been half expecting and had mentally resigned myself to a tedious afternoon of circuit testing. However, although better than two thirds of a volt, I was still only getting 7 or 8 volts at the plugs. I suspected this might be because of the piss-weak battery installed and sure enough, when I tried the starter, the engine turned over in a half-arsed way a few times and then the battery died. So I willnae be sure if I’ve solved the problem until the new heavy duty battery arrives and I get the chance to throw some real amperage through the ignition system.

After replacing the fuse - 8 volts.  Still piss-poor but better than 0,07!
After replacing the fuse - 8 volts. Still piss-poor but better than 0,07!

With that particular job in limbo until my new battery arrives, I embarked on another of the more pressing tasks; trying to sort out the risible gear change. I consulted the exploded diagrams in the workshop manual pages printed out from links I found on the net and started to remove the various boots, clips and springs from my gear lever. On doing so, I found that I seemed to have a completely different gear linkage setup from that pictured in the manual, so it was back onto the familiar territory of ‘working it out for yourself’.

Gearstick as seen from inside the cab -after removing the rubber boot and various other bits'n'bobs
Gearstick as seen from inside the cab -after removing the rubber boot and various other bits'n'bobs
Here are the bits removed, mentioned above
Here are the bits removed, mentioned above
View from underneath [through the front grill
View from underneath [through the front grill

Eventually, after much poking about and peering under rubber seals and liberal coatings of grease, I found a hole in the side of the hemispherical joint that the bottom of the gear lever sits in - and hanging out of it was a wee screw-in cotter pin type thingy. After moving that bottom rubber boot, I saw a wee cotter-pin [circled] hanging out of the hemispherical mounting the gear-lever fits into:

I picked out the screw and then got back in the cab and had a look at the gear lever from above. Sure enough, as I twisted it round I caught a glimpse of a hole set into its side. So I summonsed Marie down from upstairs to hold the top of the gear lever and keep that hole lined up with the hole in the side of the dome. The gear lever fits into, and then I got back underneath and screwed in the cotter pin again. I was a bit worried it wouldnae go, as the threads were a bit chewed up looking on the ends, but it screwed in OK.

The loose pin -threads a bit chewed up on the ends but it screwed back in OK
The loose pin -threads a bit chewed up on the ends but it screwed back in OK

I let Marie get back to the flat again while I re-assembled all the various springs, doodads and whatnots that fitted onto the gearstick and stuck everything back together again. The results seemed to be good. Changing gear still feels a bit like stirring porridge, but it feels like stirring thicker porridge in an H-shaped bowl - and best of all the gearstick no longer rotates freely round and round on its own axis. So I’m tentatively going to say “the job’s a good ‘un” although obviously the proof will be in the driving and - yet again - that’s something that will have to await the arrival of the new battery.

I’m just having a post-prandial relax now. If I get another burst of energy this avvy, I may do a bit more sanding or painting.