1969 Vauxhall Viva LHD slow restoration

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1969 Vauxhall Viva LHD slow restoration

Postby 1969 Viva De-Luxe » Mon Jan 12, 2015 11:50 pm

Some time had passed since registering in this forum http://www.vauxhallviva.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=34&t=16152 and finally this winter I've decided to start do something with my Viva.
First question is about chassis number: it's not clear where this car's been made and the colour and trim codes are strange:

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Maybe someone has some thoughts about it?

I've took the engine out, took it apart and it was clear, that we need a complete engine rebuild. Engine was not started for 25-30 years, so the cylinders and crankshaft are rusted, piston rings are seized.

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Another problem will be suspension and brakes: brake cylinders are completely dead, all the brake hoses doesn't look good and I think the brake pipes should go too. But this is not priority, for the start I want to sort out engine and then think about other things.

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Some things already done: managed to buy on e-bay a set of oversize pistons, which is good as I can give the engine block to the machine shop.

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Engine head is repaired, there was worn valve guides, and as I could not find new valves, specialized workshop repaired existing valves and put a bronze bushings in valve guides.

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Some of the engine and engine bay parts have been sandblasted and powdercoated. After all the mchining jobs done I've plan to sandblast and paint the whole engine.

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Biggest problem with this car here in Latvia is a total lack of spare parts, so this is one main reason that will slow this restoration.
I have question about crankshaft bearings: is the main bearings same on Viva HA 1057cc engine and on my 1159cc engine?
Thanks for looking!
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Re: 1969 Vauxhall Viva LHD slow restoration

Postby Paul Dawson » Tue Jan 13, 2015 8:31 am

Can't help with the chassis number details - sorry, but the work you've done so far looks great. You are lucky that the brake drums were salvagable as they are hard to find these days.

Your suspension, steering gear and brakes look very similar to those on my 1972 Viva when I got it. Plenty of Plusgas and WD40 combined got all my running gear off with only one bolt needing to be cut out. Plusgas is good stuff but when it occasionally didn't do the trick I found that a squirt of WD40 seemed to drive it deeper into the corrosion and it nearly always came undone.

The one bolt that wouldn't shift is the one running through the top of the front shock absorber, one of those took a whole day to drill out as access is tight.

In terms of parts - Brake cylinders are available but even new old stock ones need stripping and cleaning up before fitting. Hoses and shoes are available. I cleaned up the steering rack with new gaiters and refilled with the specified oil - on a cold day it's like pouring treacle into it. If you are club member spares for the brakes, suspension and steering ought not to be an issue, I certainly found everything quite quickly. The only scarce bits are drums which you are OK for.

Good luck and keep taking lots of photos, it's always good to see how things go.
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Re: 1969 Vauxhall Viva LHD slow restoration

Postby hbpeter » Tue Jan 13, 2015 12:51 pm

Well done. Be sure after sandblasting the engine block that its cleaned out totally, dont want any grit left in it. As mentioned, brake hoses/cylinders/shoes are available, check to see if you have Girling or Lockheed. Would be worth getting a Haynes manual off ebay, plenty of them and very usefull.

Chassis numbers explained here: http://www.vauxhallviva.com/?page_id=149
Not sure if that applies to your car with it being an export model.

Peter
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Re: 1969 Vauxhall Viva LHD slow restoration

Postby Paul Dawson » Tue Jan 13, 2015 2:12 pm

Just in case it helps - those front brakes are Girling - same as mine.
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Re: 1969 Vauxhall Viva LHD slow restoration

Postby pbottomley » Tue Jan 13, 2015 8:57 pm

The car looks to of been manufactured in Antwerp as thats what is on the chassis plate, cars were exported as kits to various factories around the world for assembly and thats what may of happened here.

try this page for trim options and colour codes... its done via the year links at the top of the page :)

http://www.vauxhallviva.com/?page_id=160
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Re: 1969 Vauxhall Viva LHD slow restoration

Postby 1969 Viva De-Luxe » Tue Jan 13, 2015 10:52 pm

Thanks for all coments and advice!
Haynes manual for Viva HB was the first thing I bought from Ebay! It is good, useful book. OK, not really first, first thing was owner's manual. :)
I know from manual, that my car has Girling type brakes. It's good that brake drums was in repairable condition, I had no idea, that they are so hard to find.
Now it's little bit more clear about chassis number. Unfortunately I couldn't find my car's paint and trim codes in link to factory codes.
Anyway, again, thanks for advice!
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Re: 1969 Vauxhall Viva LHD slow restoration

Postby 1969 Viva De-Luxe » Tue Feb 24, 2015 11:31 pm

A little update.
Found oversize main bearings and big end bearings

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Now I can take the crankshaft to machine shop.
Got the engine block back from machine shop, now it has 0.040 oversize cylinders. New pistons fit perfectly

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As it turned out that the engine was used with water as a coolant for a long time, I decided to pull out all plugs from block. It was a great idea, as some of the plugs were nearly rusted through.
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Without plugs it was much easier to clean block as there was half of inch of rust at the bottom of water jacket.
Also spend some time cleaning rust from block's inner surfaces and oil passages.
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Now it's clearly visible, that engine block was painted black at the factory.
Next job is to flatten cylinder head's mating surface, then I can temporarily assemble the engine for sandblasting and powdercoating.
Thanks for watching!
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Re: 1969 Vauxhall Viva LHD slow restoration

Postby hbpeter » Mon Mar 16, 2015 12:56 am

Well done, looking very clean!

Peter
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Re: 1969 Vauxhall Viva LHD slow restoration

Postby billy_bunter » Mon Mar 16, 2015 9:27 pm

Great work..

Can you get core plug sets new?
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Re: 1969 Vauxhall Viva LHD slow restoration

Postby 1969 Viva De-Luxe » Mon Mar 16, 2015 10:46 pm

HBPeter wrote:Well done, looking very clean!

Peter

Thanks, Peter!
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