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Just Some Dude in Jersey
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Discussion Starter #61
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Opel-sutra!

I had 2 catastrophic car issues this past weekend at Carlisle.

Catastrophy #1: The first catastrophy started happening after I had filled up the tank 15 miles from the show. As I was driving the last 15 miles I noticed that my fuel gauge was telling me that I was going through gas rapidly. By the time I got to the show field I was down to 3/4 of a tank. The car gets 25mpg with the fuel injection, every 1/4 of a tank is calibrated to be 2.5 gallons. So, I went through 2.5 gallons in 15 miles. When I got to the show and investigated the issue we discovered that fuel was pouring out of my fuel pump's vent line. I was supposed to have hooked that vent hose up to my tank. I didn't, I coiled it up in the front of the car. Hey, it's just a fuel vapor vent line, just let it vent to the atmospere, no big deal, right? Who would think that fuel would pour out of it? No fuel pumped out of it during the previous 2-3 months of driving, why now? I called Edelbrock and they said this was normal and COULD happen. WHAAAAAAAT? The instructions didn't say nothing about this being a possibility. It's just a vapor vent line. They did, however, put the instruction to hook it up to the tank in a big red box with warnings that it MUST be hooked up to the tank. I thought it was just a bullshit environmental EPA warning. If they had made any mention that there was the possibility that raw fuel could squirt out of it I surely would have hooked it up. Holy Schitt, I could have had gas squirting all over my engine compartment and had a catastrophic fire happen! We did a quick fix and extended and ran the hose out the hood, in through the passenger window, and to the fuel tank. Thank golly it was fairly easy to get at my tank and the front unused vent outlet was already tapped for NPT fittings. Many thanks to Charlie for dashing out to the auto store to fetch hose, adapters, and fittings and to the other guys who supplied tools. I got home just fine and spent the early part of this week running the vent line to the tank properly.

Catastrophy #2: This one was just as bad and could have happened at any time and I could have died in a car crash. As I arrived home and was doing the manuevers to back up my driveway and into my garage onto my lift, the steering suddenly started "ratcheting" and then disconnected entirely! The steering wheel just spun! Holy Schitt! The car got stuck at a weird angle in my driveway blocking me and my neighbor's cars. I had to man handle the front tires to try to turn them and push the car back and forth and do more man handling to get it sort of lined up with my lift. It wasn't lined up well and I was reluctant to start the car and drive it up onto my lift with no steering. I had to use a come-a-long to winch it up onto my lift and then more man handling of the tires and car pushing because it ended up almost ready to fall off the lift. That whole ordeal took about 2 hours.

Upon investigation, the lower steering shaft and coupling had slipped off of my splined power steering shaft. Holy Schitt! This could have happened at any time and I would have lost control of the car! When you install the power steering unit, you remove the approximately 4 foot long oem steering shaft and replace it with a new 2.5 foot long shaft and the power steering unit. I remember having difficulty getting the unit's splined male shaft to fit all the way into the shortened steering shaft's female splined opening. I thought I had gotten it in far enough or as far as it would go. This was 3 years ago. So, I've already spent 3 hours trying to get the splined shafts to mate up and slide fully together with no progress at all. Holy Cow this is turning into a nightmare of a job. I had to take the driver's seat out, so that I could do Opel-sutra and lay upside down in the footwell to visualize what the heck is going on. The power steering assembly just barely fits under there and you can't see **** or fit any tools where they need to go. I am having one mutha of a time trying to fix this problem. It took me one afternoon to install this gizmo, it's looking like it's going to take me DAYS to get that coupling to slide together. Pics of the issues:

Gordo's Power Steering Repair - Part Two

With great effort I managed to extract the power steering mechanism and shortened steering shaft. Upon investigation, the splines on the short section of splining, that was actually engaging the steering shaft, are pretty worn and rounded. The spines on the wider section of splining are virgin. The spines inside the steering shaft are pretty good at the opening and all the way inside, but they are worn away near the middle where the clamp bolt is. The splines all the way inside are virgin. Theoretically, the whole thing is shot and should be replaced, but it costs $1000-$1500 or more. However, I think I can fix it pretty good and save it.

How did this happen? Well, I think I fucked up. The bolt on the steering shaft clamp does not protrude into the splined area of the P.S. shaft very much. Only about 1mm. With the bolt in place you can't even feel that it's there if you feel around inside the shaft hole. I also think I screwed up when I installed the mechanism and I didn't remove that bolt entirely and that's why I was never able to slide the steering shaft all the way onto the splined P.S. shaft. In retrospect, I should have slid the steering shaft all the way onto the PS shaft and clamped it down BEFORE attempting to install the whole assembly. Instead, I recall jiggling and wiggling it all togther in the car and sliding the oem upper and lower couplings and the PS and shortened steering shaft together all at the same time. I didn't remove that steering shaft clamp bolt, JUST LIKE YOU HAVE TO REMOVE THE OEM UPPER AND LOWER STEERING SHAFT CLAMP BOLTS WHEN REMOVING JUST THE OEM STEERING SHAFT, and that caused this whole problem. Rooky mistake. I'm mortified and embarassed. Forgetting to remove those clamp bolts also bit me in the ass and caused much of the work and frustration I had taking the PS unit out of the car: I forgot to remove the upper clamp bolt. I've got nobody to blame but myself.

So, here's the fix: I'm going to try to carefully file and clean burrs off of the splines on the boogered up short section of the PS unit's shaft. I'm going to try to NOT remove as much of the spining as possible. I will then try to slide the steering shaft ALL THE WAY onto the PS shaft and clamp it up. Degraded sections of splines will be sliding onto virgin sections of splines. There are about 1" of splines on the PS shaft, I was previously only engaging the first 1/3 of an inch of them and the shaft was probably wiggling a bit and causing wear. The remaining 2/3 of an inch of splines never got inserted. If I can slide the whole 1.25" of PS shaft into the steering shaft there should be no wiggle and new unused splines should engage only slightly worn splines. The section inside the steering shaft that has badly worn splines is right where the clamp bolt is and right where the groove in the PS shaft is, so, when slid all together, the worn area should be where the PS shaft groove is and wouldn't grab anything anyway, so no big deal that it's worn there. I will then remount the PS unit with the pre-installed and tightened steering shaft and fit/bolt everything back together. I'm optimistic that everything will go well.


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Power steering repair (1).JPG
Power steering repair (2).JPG
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Just Some Dude in Jersey
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14,493 Posts
Discussion Starter #62 (Edited)
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Gordo's Power Steering Clusterflock Part 3 : OH SCHIT!

Today, with moderate cussing and much sweat, I managed to get the steering parts all slid back together and the steering column and PS bolted back in place to the car's steering mounting plate. I should be on Easy Street from here forward.

NOPE! I happened to notice that my always-connected charger was flashing(amber), instead of being solid amber(charging) or green(charged). I also noticed that my dome light was out. Turning the key does nothing, the car is dead. One row of switches has always-on green LED's and they're lit, but if I hit a switch they go out.

Along the way during this repair, I had to cut and tape off the main power to the PS. I don't think that should be the problem. While jiggling and wiggling the steering wheel and upper steering assembly onto the top of the PS shaft and into position to bolt them both to the steering mounting plate, I noticed that I had yanked loose the ignition power relay wires. I also noticed that my key may have been in the RUN position overnight.

I'm beat from the install and don't feel like chasing this electrical problem today. I'll finish the rest of this repair tomorrow, then chase the electrical gremlin. I'm sort of hoping that I simply drained my battery to nothing, but I'm dismayed that my charger isn't returning to normal. @#$%&! Opels!



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Shitty to hear. Thankfully in the end your beautiful car didn’t catch fire and / or crash!!!!
 

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Just Some Dude in Jersey
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Discussion Starter #64
FYI: My car is all custom wired with aftermarket fuse box and equipment, so there's very little help that you guys can provide me, other than basic general theoretical advice. Here's the "theoretical" wiring schematic of my engine compartment from BEFORE I installed the fuel injection. Basically, delete the MSD and Trigger, draw in an FI labeled box, and run the pink coil wire and a battery power wire to it and that would represent the FI change:

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Here's a second wiring diagram made during my attempts to fix my engine problems last year. I had removed the MSD and and installed the Pertronix III, which made the MSD box unnecessary. The pink coil wire now turns on the FI and a battery power wire gives the FI primary power. The FI computer now powers the dizzy and sends the spark signals to it. The FI's crank position sensor now tells the computer where the timing is, instead of the dizzy. None of this is faulty and has nothing to do with my problem, I'm merely showing you guys all this to show that my diagnostic path is going to be much different than diagnosing a stock Opel. After wrapping up the mechanical stuff that I have to finish up in the aftermath of this repair, the first thing I will do is reconnect power to my PS and reattach the wires to the ignition relay I had installed. This should restore power to my switched power devices and the FI. If I still have electrical woes, then I will go to the fuse box to look for blown fuses. If that doesn't work, then things will start to get ugly. I'll have to start tracing power, starting at the battery, and work my way to the fuse box behind the seat, then behind the dash where the steering column may have pulled other wires loose, etc. It will be a hot humid day, so we'll see how long my motivation lasts. Hopefully, reconnecting the stuff I already mentioned will set things right. :)

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Just Some Dude in Jersey
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Discussion Starter #65
This is what worries and dismays me: Observe that I have "remote charging terminals". This is where my charger is connected. Observe that there is a relatively straight path to the battery from the + remote terminal, to the starter, then to the + on the battery. Why is my charger saying I'm disconnected or I'm grounding power? At least, that's what I think the flashing charge light on my charger is telling me. A cursory look at main power wires, junction block, and verifying that the wires I disconnected are taped off or not touching anything does not show evidence of any melted wires or anything amiss. I don't understand why having the power and other wires going to my ignition relay currently disconnected(The most likely suspect) would affect my car's charging capability. That shouldn't have any part to play with charging my battery. This is what is causing me to worry a lot at this point.
 

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With that kind of luck you should consider changing your name to Gladstone Gander and buy a lottery ticket. If it was me, I would probably be in a ditch somewhere with a burnt up car.
Have you checked your charger ?
 

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Just Some Dude in Jersey
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Discussion Starter #69
Hooray! Well, at least I think it's hooray time. I won't know for sure until tomorrow when I try to start and drive it.

I think the charging and dead car thing was because the battery drained to nothing: 2.5 volts. It was so low the charger wouldn't even recognize it as a battery. When I set the steering off to the side I seemed to have pulled off both the ignition and the starter wires going to the coils of my starter and ignition protective relays AND I pulled off both battery power wires going to them. I think one of those grounded just enough to drain the battery, but not pop any fuses or melt wires. Or.......I didn't pull the wires off until the next day and I didn't see sparks, smoke, melted wires, and blown fuses because I had left the key in the RUN position and the FI computer drained the battery. The latter is pretty unlikely because the charger would have kept feeding it power.

So, I bought a new battery and it's charging up as I type. Tomorrow morning I'll see if the car starts and runs okay. Then I'll have to shut it off and spend an hour bolting the driver's seat back in place. Then I could go for a ride and check to see that everything is working.

Hoo-wee, 10 days straight of laying on my back in the Opel-sutra position and having to repeatedly climb out to fetch a screw/tool/etc. or climb underneath the car or get something out of the basement or.....etc. And it was hot as schit outside and I sweated my face off.

Working on cars sucks.
 

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You can test the steering linkage by turning it lock to lock with the key off. That should be worst case load on that connection which is much less when the assist is working. If it doesn't slip you should be good.
 

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Opeler
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You can test the steering linkage by turning it lock to lock with the key off. That should be worst case load on that connection which is much less when the assist is working. If it doesn't slip you should be good.
I think that the load on that spline is the same regardles of whether it is applied with power on or power off. The steering "load" is produced by the weight of the car on the tires and resistance in the steering components and is independent how you turn the wheel .
 

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I'm not sure. With the assist working, it doesn't take much effort at the wheel which would be the same as that joint versus having to really muscle it with no assist which means the load of trying to turn the wheels is going through that joint also.
 

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Did you know you can often charge a dead battery by hooking it up in parallel with a good one and connecting both to the charger? If the battery was in good shape before being drawn down it will likely have a lot of life in it.
 

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Just Some Dude in Jersey
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Discussion Starter #76
I wanted to test fit my removable underhood LED lighting in preparation for a cruise event this evening and I realized I hadn't made a video of the lighting since I installed 2.4 Motronic fuel injection on the engine. So, here's a new video:

 

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Just Some Dude in Jersey
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Discussion Starter #77
An Opel Story.

Well...sort of:

My cat killed his first mouse!

Well, for now, that's who I'm blaming it on. My computer mouse had been acting up for a few weeks. I had to click on things multiple times to get them to actuate. Sometimes stuff I didn't click on would come up and I'd get sent to weird pages. I have to copy and paste, drag and drop, and draw stuff in Paint pretty frequently and doing that stuff was getting all glitchy lately. Then we had a power outage last night and the computer got all screwed up. This sometimes requires all sorts of reboots, computer unpluggings, file deletions, and other hijinx. Yeah, I tried all that. I spent 6 hours with that wonky mouse trying to get myself back online. Sometimes the computer would spontaneously reboot or just shut down and refuse to come back on when I would click on something.
I keep so many Opel pictures(6000+) in my computer that I was thinking lately that my hard drive must be running out of space and that was causing my mouse clicking and slowness issues. But my computer is about 4-5 years old, and even though it runs Win10 just fine, 3 of it's USB ports can no longer be used because their connections to the motherboard are cracked and they will cause the computer to turn off or reboot.
Ding! Ding! Ding! Clue!
Time to go to Best Buy and look at computers and mice. Off I went. OooooOoooo, spiffy new computers that are nice and small and that have solid state hardrives! Only two moving parts: The fan and the CDROM. And CHEAP! All of them were in the $500-$600 range. Urrrggghhh.......but, oh man, it's such a PIA to transfer 6000 pictures and get virus protection, programs, passwords, and all that other computer stuff reconfigured and working again. Let's just buy a new mouse first. All 50 different kinds of mice they had were wireless. Hmmmm......kitties and computer mouse wires(mouse tails) are mortal enemies. I've had wireless ones in the past, but with mixed results. Oh well, let's spend $25(instead of $600) and see if that works first.
Bingo! It's like I have a new computer! EVERYTHING works better and faster, no glitches at all! Oh, and look, I've still got 41% of my hard drive that isn't filled with Opel pictures!

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An Opel Story.

Well...sort of:

My cat killed his first mouse!

Well, for now, that's who I'm blaming it on. My computer mouse had been acting up for a few weeks. I had to click on things multiple times to get them to actuate. Sometimes stuff I didn't click on would come up and I'd get sent to weird pages. I have to copy and paste, drag and drop, and draw stuff in Paint pretty frequently and doing that stuff was getting all glitchy lately. Then we had a power outage last night and the computer got all screwed up. This sometimes requires all sorts of reboots, computer unpluggings, file deletions, and other hijinx. Yeah, I tried all that. I spent 6 hours with that wonky mouse trying to get myself back online. Sometimes the computer would spontaneously reboot or just shut down and refuse to come back on when I would click on something.
I keep so many Opel pictures(6000+) in my computer that I was thinking lately that my hard drive must be running out of space and that was causing my mouse clicking and slowness issues. But my computer is about 4-5 years old, and even though it runs Win10 just fine, 3 of it's USB ports can no longer be used because their connections to the motherboard are cracked and they will cause the computer to turn off or reboot.
Ding! Ding! Ding! Clue!
Time to go to Best Buy and look at computers and mice. Off I went. OooooOoooo, spiffy new computers that are nice and small and that have solid state hardrives! Only two moving parts: The fan and the CDROM. And CHEAP! All of them were in the $500-$600 range. Urrrggghhh.......but, oh man, it's such a PIA to transfer 6000 pictures and get virus protection, programs, passwords, and all that other computer stuff reconfigured and working again. Let's just buy a new mouse first. All 50 different kinds of mice they had were wireless. Hmmmm......kitties and computer mouse wires(mouse tails) are mortal enemies. I've had wireless ones in the past, but with mixed results. Oh well, let's spend $25(instead of $600) and see if that works first.
Bingo! It's like I have a new computer! EVERYTHING works better and faster, no glitches at all! Oh, and look, I've still got 41% of my hard drive that isn't filled with Opel
An Opel Story.

Well...sort of:

My cat killed his first mouse!

Well, for now, that's who I'm blaming it on. My computer mouse had been acting up for a few weeks. I had to click on things multiple times to get them to actuate. Sometimes stuff I didn't click on would come up and I'd get sent to weird pages. I have to copy and paste, drag and drop, and draw stuff in Paint pretty frequently and doing that stuff was getting all glitchy lately. Then we had a power outage last night and the computer got all screwed up. This sometimes requires all sorts of reboots, computer unpluggings, file deletions, and other hijinx. Yeah, I tried all that. I spent 6 hours with that wonky mouse trying to get myself back online. Sometimes the computer would spontaneously reboot or just shut down and refuse to come back on when I would click on something.
I keep so many Opel pictures(6000+) in my computer that I was thinking lately that my hard drive must be running out of space and that was causing my mouse clicking and slowness issues. But my computer is about 4-5 years old, and even though it runs Win10 just fine, 3 of it's USB ports can no longer be used because their connections to the motherboard are cracked and they will cause the computer to turn off or reboot.
Ding! Ding! Ding! Clue!
Time to go to Best Buy and look at computers and mice. Off I went. OooooOoooo, spiffy new computers that are nice and small and that have solid state hardrives! Only two moving parts: The fan and the CDROM. And CHEAP! All of them were in the $500-$600 range. Urrrggghhh.......but, oh man, it's such a PIA to transfer 6000 pictures and get virus protection, programs, passwords, and all that other computer stuff reconfigured and working again. Let's just buy a new mouse first. All 50 different kinds of mice they had were wireless. Hmmmm......kitties and computer mouse wires(mouse tails) are mortal enemies. I've had wireless ones in the past, but with mixed results. Oh well, let's spend $25(instead of $600) and see if that works first.
Bingo! It's like I have a new computer! EVERYTHING works better and faster, no glitches at all! Oh, and look, I've still got 41% of my hard drive that isn't filled with Opel pictures!

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An Opel Story.

Well...sort of:

My cat killed his first mouse!

Well, for now, that's who I'm blaming it on. My computer mouse had been acting up for a few weeks. I had to click on things multiple times to get them to actuate. Sometimes stuff I didn't click on would come up and I'd get sent to weird pages. I have to copy and paste, drag and drop, and draw stuff in Paint pretty frequently and doing that stuff was getting all glitchy lately. Then we had a power outage last night and the computer got all screwed up. This sometimes requires all sorts of reboots, computer unpluggings, file deletions, and other hijinx. Yeah, I tried all that. I spent 6 hours with that wonky mouse trying to get myself back online. Sometimes the computer would spontaneously reboot or just shut down and refuse to come back on when I would click on something.
I keep so many Opel pictures(6000+) in my computer that I was thinking lately that my hard drive must be running out of space and that was causing my mouse clicking and slowness issues. But my computer is about 4-5 years old, and even though it runs Win10 just fine, 3 of it's USB ports can no longer be used because their connections to the motherboard are cracked and they will cause the computer to turn off or reboot.
Ding! Ding! Ding! Clue!
Time to go to Best Buy and look at computers and mice. Off I went. OooooOoooo, spiffy new computers that are nice and small and that have solid state hardrives! Only two moving parts: The fan and the CDROM. And CHEAP! All of them were in the $500-$600 range. Urrrggghhh.......but, oh man, it's such a PIA to transfer 6000 pictures and get virus protection, programs, passwords, and all that other computer stuff reconfigured and working again. Let's just buy a new mouse first. All 50 different kinds of mice they had were wireless. Hmmmm......kitties and computer mouse wires(mouse tails) are mortal enemies. I've had wireless ones in the past, but with mixed results. Oh well, let's spend $25(instead of $600) and see if that works first.
Bingo! It's like I have a new computer! EVERYTHING works better and faster, no glitches at all! Oh, and look, I've still got 41% of my hard drive that isn't filled with Opel pictures!

View attachment 429649
View attachment 429650 View attachment 429651 View attachment 429652 View attachment 429653
The government said no more cats for you
 

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Just Some Dude in Jersey
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14,493 Posts
Discussion Starter #79
Here's an idea that I'm looking into: I'm investigating the possibility of putting a Holley Sniper system SIDEWAYS on my Steinmetz SSD manifold. This fixes a number of problems when putting them on our 1.9 downdraft manifolds. The air flow will be more direct into the head, the carb and it's electronics will be moved well away from the heat of our exhaust manifolds, and the hood clearance/filter/airbox/cold air intake situation can be remedied. We also found that one of the Holley Snipers bolts to the Weber flange, so no need to weld on a Holley adapter. Still investigating the possibility and am waiting for feedback from Holley. :)
 
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