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Reliability – Fitting the Reconditioned Engine

There has been a quite a bit of progress getting the Rebel van to a reliable state this week as it was needed to move a cargo of Teak and Foden engine Cylinder heads to the Isle of Wight!

The first step was to remove the engine again:

While it was out it was fitted with a new clutch pressure plate and the correct engine mounting feet for a Rebel. It was also given a small service, including points, condenser, plugs etc.

An 850 Carb, inlet manifold and were bought.

At the same time the front brake adjusters were replaced from a handy kit bought off eBay, Its Girling approved  8) the photo shows one of the old ones looking a bit fooked (they were seized)

Old ones were ground off with a grinder, The packet recommended use of a hammer and chisel and a saw as options to remove old adjusters, fortunately we didn’t need them! Photo shows Comparison Old and new adjusters:

The following day the van rewarded our efforts by blowing a head gasket on the A23 :roll: . It was towed home by the AA who in an unusual show of efficiency sent a tow truck straight away!¬† We spent the next day changing the engine for the rebuilt 850 we had on the bench and had been intended for the red rebel. Sorry I’ve no photos to showing this engine swap… it was a long day!

by that evening we’d tested the new engine and had the van ready to go to the IOW… you can fit a suprisingly large amount of stuff in a small van!

a few photos at the ferry terminal:

Teak is quite heavy…!

Teak on the left, Foden cylinder heads in the boxes on the right!

I’ll write up the creation of some side panels in a bit…!

Now MOT’d

Spent the morning getting the blue Rebel MOT’d and have now clocked up 20 (painful) miles…!

Early start… our first attempt to reach the test station resulted in us heading back home having only covered a few hundred yards!¬† The Zenith carb and 850 engine combination proved to be un-driveable…

After spending some time swapping Jets over we finally made it to the test station.

It passed, with a few advisories: Bit surprised about the wiper blades as they were brand new, most of the other points were quite minor so all in all very pleased.

A few photos of the van taken on the way home, (wheels, tyres, starter motor, battery and petrol filler neck are on loan from the red rebel!)

Tools and assorted carb’s in the back, In total we stopped 4 times to attend to carb issues, Accelerator diaphragm burst resulting in changing it for a spare perished one and disconnecting the operating cam – made for a slightly gutless drive home!

Front view, note the slightly improvised choke cable… This rebel came with two windscreens- both were scratched but we’ve swapped for the spare as it is at least usable! New windscreen seal fitted too.

New seatbelts, these take some getting used to compared to modern inertia types!

Rear door, Hinges have been repair’d and a temporary doorlock striker plate fabricated up

Theres a very short video of the journey home here: http://youtu.be/08X5PSxSflY

There a few bit still to be done – Tax class needs changing which will have to wait until after the bank holiday, Its currently registered as a Disabled Vehicle, Needs a SU carb to suit the 850 engine and possibly a 850 distributer too instead of the 700/750 items currently fitted. Engine front-plate still needs proper feet making up. The LUK clutch ultimately destined for the red rebel which is currently fitted wants swapping for a standard one which is on order along with a new starter, a proper choke cable would be nice as well as a new wiper switch so the self-park
feature actually works!. All that should make it a bit more usable.

After getting those bits done we’ll probably make up some panels for the rear to turn it back into a proper Van and sort out the other bodywork bits. Major suspension/chassis overhaul is not a current priority and will happen in the longer term.