2CV Engine preparation
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Thread: 2CV Engine preparation

  1. #1
    1000+ Posts pottsy's Avatar
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    Default 2CV Engine preparation

    Greetings All.

    As some of you may recall, I obtained Gaston as a rusty wreck, albeit complete, from a very kind bloke in Sydney. The preparation of the car for the RAID NZ at the start of last year involved a huge rebuild of chassis, body, brakes and suspension. Last item on the agenda before NZ was to be the engine, but when the gearbox bearings screamed louder I spent the last available time I had rebuilding that.

    So the engine was an unknown quantity which, while running pretty well, had an annoying "tick" from the right hand cylinder area which didn't seem to go away with careful adjustments of rocker clearances (many times) or anything else.

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    In any case, the whole thing went like a rocket around NZ and subsequently back home, so I gave up worrying. (The aforementioned Very Nice Bloke was also on the RAID and reckoned he should have kept the engine as I was consistently hunting him up hills! But that's another story! )

    Then the proposal came to drive across the Nullarbor to this year's Easter Cit-in.

    Having driven West to East just last week with a friend in his Prado, I now have an appreciation of the distance. It's a bloody long way! The same Mate is coming in Gaston at Easter, incidentally.

    Anyway, I've removed the engine and stripped off heads, barrels and pistons preparatory to fitting new pistons barrels and rings, and another pair of heads with un-stripped manifold fastenings.

    Paradoxically I can't seen anything that may have caused the Tick. Annoying!

    Cleaning is underway. A new front crankshaft seal is waiting in the wings and all new copper washers, rubber seals and gaskets will be fitted as the task progresses.

    My question to the brains trust is, have I missed anything? What do people use to seal barrels to crankcase and heads to barrels, if anything? Obviously everything needs to be as scrupulously clean as possible and this is the aim. I plan to use assembly lube and clean oil for all the sliding bits and anaerobic gasket sealant as well. Is this OK?

    While it's on the bench I also plan to check tightening torques of all accessible bolts/nuts as well.

    I'm working on the "6 P" principle. (Perfect Preparation Prevents P... Poor Performance)

    Anyone have anything to add while I've got the beast down to its knickers on the bench?

    Cheers, Pottsy.
    Buvito Ergo Sum!

    The Fleet:

    2018 C3 Shine ("Oscar" Mrs P's)
    1974 D Special Manual Sedan ("Moby Dick")
    2006 C5 HDI Wagon Auto ("Mephistopheles")
    1982 2CV6 ("Gaston") On the road! (Woohoo!)
    1957 Slough 2CV ("Alphonse") Waiting in the wings
    1975 GS Pallas ("GiSelle") Also waiting in the wings
    And for Fun, 1968 Mini Deluxe ("The R & D'luxe" 1078cc, Grin Factor 100!)

  2. #2
    JBN
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    In short, remove all the cooling shrouds around the engine. Remove the cylinder heads, pushrod tubes and pushrods and poke the pushrods into some polystyrene foam marked with black texta to indicate front/rear left/right. It protects them.

    There is no sealing between the barrels and the engine block. The heads are a tapered fit and the three studs per head are tightened hand tight - 18 foot pounds cold (check what engine you have as early ones differ).

    A trick for getting the pistons/rings back onto the conrod is to get some suitable size round poly tube from the plumbing department of Bunnings. Cut to piston length, cut tube vertically in half. Use two metal hose clamps of appropriate size to hold the two half shelves together and compress the rings and slide on the barrel. The nice thing is the plastic doesn't harm either the pistons nor the rings and both slide well against it.

    I bought a 3/8" drive Torque Wrench that went down to 5 foot pounds. My mate used a foot long bar with a spring scale to apply initially 7 then 18 pounds pressure. Either way works.

    If you are very methodical in setting out the cooling shroud screws in their correct order, you will probably get them back on first go.

    I ran in Daffyduck from Sydney-Wagga-Mildura-Port Pirie-Ceduna-Eucla-Caiguna-Norseman in both 2008 and 2018, each time after an engine rebuild.

    John
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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by pottsy View Post
    Greetings All.

    As some of you may recall, I obtained Gaston as a rusty wreck, albeit complete, from a very kind bloke in Sydney. The preparation of the car for the RAID NZ at the start of last year involved a huge rebuild of chassis, body, brakes and suspension. Last item on the agenda before NZ was to be the engine, but when the gearbox bearings screamed louder I spent the last available time I had rebuilding that.

    So the engine was an unknown quantity which, while running pretty well, had an annoying "tick" from the right hand cylinder area which didn't seem to go away with careful adjustments of rocker clearances (many times) or anything else.

    ...

    Anyway, I've removed the engine and stripped off heads, barrels and pistons preparatory to fitting new pistons barrels and rings, and another pair of heads with un-stripped manifold fastenings.

    Paradoxically I can't seen anything that may have caused the Tick. Annoying!

    ...

    Anyone have anything to add while I've got the beast down to its knickers on the bench?

    Cheers, Pottsy.
    My experience is with BMW flat-twin motor bike engines, rather than 2CV flat-twin motor bike engines.

    The BMW engines are known for noisy tappets, and no amount of adjustment makes them any quieter! The problem is that poor lubrication of the rockers leads to wear of the spindles and the rocker arm "bushes" (can't remember if they actually have bushes). This allows them to rock side to side as well as backwards and forwards, thus producing the noise.

    My only other thought would be a hollow worn into the surface of a rocker where it pushes on the top of the valve stem, making it impossible to get an accurate gap measurement with a flat feeler gauge.

    Cheers

    Alec
    Last edited by Armidillo; 23rd January 2019 at 08:52 AM.

  4. #4
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    Hi pottsy
    My worth. The important thing to do with the metal to metal joints is cleanliness when assembling them. Beforehand clean the heads and barrels with a stiff brush at the joint, not wire, and put aside on clean paper or rag so they do not pick up dirt as you use three hands to assemble.
    I like JBNs two plastic pipes to do the rings. I have some light metal circular clamps I made in several sizes that I use for all engines. They are bent round by hand with the ends bent at right angles and a hole drilled so a small bolt can hold them clamped to the piston lightly. They work better than the silly bought ring compressors in normal engines anyway IMHO and also do motorbikes and your engines as well.
    Jaahn

  5. #5
    1000+ Posts pottsy's Avatar
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    Thanks Chaps.

    It looks like no sealing material such as gasket goo etc, is necessary for the barrel to crankcase and barrel to head joints, so I'll proceed on that basis.

    As far as ring compression is concerned, yes, I already have a bit of poly pipe the right diameter and this works well with just hand squeezing and gentle bumping of the piston into the bore.

    Will check over the spare heads today and fit it all up ready for bench testing. Well, I call it a bench test, it's really a purpose built test bed. Engine mounts and gearbox casing on a large wooden plank!

    Pictures are being taken as I proceed and will be published when I get the time to sit down and do so.

    Cheers, Pottsy.
    Buvito Ergo Sum!

    The Fleet:

    2018 C3 Shine ("Oscar" Mrs P's)
    1974 D Special Manual Sedan ("Moby Dick")
    2006 C5 HDI Wagon Auto ("Mephistopheles")
    1982 2CV6 ("Gaston") On the road! (Woohoo!)
    1957 Slough 2CV ("Alphonse") Waiting in the wings
    1975 GS Pallas ("GiSelle") Also waiting in the wings
    And for Fun, 1968 Mini Deluxe ("The R & D'luxe" 1078cc, Grin Factor 100!)

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    Pottsy,
    hope you're going to be lapping in the valves on those spare cylinder heads?

    Anyhow, going back to that 'ticking' question, it might be worth checking that both washers are in place below the rocker arms on that offside cylinder head.

    There should be a 'wavey' washer as well as a plain washer and if the former has been misplaced, it's surprising how much effect that will have on the audible output...

    Ken
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  7. #7
    1000+ Posts pottsy's Avatar
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    G'Day Ken.

    Yeah, I wanted to compare the original and spare set of cylinder heads before taking the chosen pair to my Head Man. I've decided, after discussion with this bloke, who's a Guru in all things cylinder headish (?), to run with the originals.

    The concern I had with the originals was that in getting out the snapped off studs originally (last year, before gong to NZ) I'd somewhat munted the alloy so that my helicoils weren't quite up the task of keeping the exhaust gases contained. I wan't sure if these could be salvaged, so was looking at the spare heads, which are in an un-munted state manifold flange wise.

    Rob, the Guru, is confident that he can fix it, however, and I trust his judgment. I've seen some of the heads he's repaired for various makes, particularly Mini as this is where his primary experience has been over the past 50 years, but also on Peugeot and Renault alloy items. His Grandson is making a name for himself in racing Hyundai's of all things (which are cheap and disposable here) so Rob has managed to work his magic on these cylinder heads and glean about 10 more horsepower out of these otherwise unremarkable shopping carts.

    But back to Gaston's bits, he's going to weld up the monstered manifold holes and re-drill and re-thread them. Also going to check seats and lap in the valves.

    I anticipate this work will make the whole thing look brand new, as, indeed, it will be.

    I'll check the rocker arms once he's done his Voodoo, and make sure the relevant washerings are in place. Thanks for that hint. I think, though, that it may simply have been a bit of piston slap as both pistons exhibit a bit of scoring towards the crown. I'll see if I can wrangle a photo or two.

    In the meantime, the new pistons and barrels are fitted, using the bit of magic plastic for ring compression, and look the goods.

    I've also double checked that the top two rings on each cylinder have the word "top" at the top and that the piston arrows both point to the front of the motor. Gaps are positioned about 120 degrees apart and I measured the ring gap of the top rings at 12 thou. Also double checked that the gudgeon circlips are seated correctly.

    This last check of the arrows was because many years ago I assembled a Peugeot motor with the pistons oriented 180 deg out (I was still learning then!) and the piston noise was alarming to say the least. Easily fixed though, and an object lesson in building it once and doing it right!

    So we progress. Time to move on to some other jobs while Rob does his thing. Oh, and sorry for using so much technical language above!

    I've managed to do the image wrangling so here are a few shots of how it's all going. Included is my scratch built tool (vacuum cleaner tube and solder spool) for installing the new crankshaft front seal, piston ring compressor and carefully crafted gearbox support special tools.

    Cheers, and thanks, Pottsy.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Buvito Ergo Sum!

    The Fleet:

    2018 C3 Shine ("Oscar" Mrs P's)
    1974 D Special Manual Sedan ("Moby Dick")
    2006 C5 HDI Wagon Auto ("Mephistopheles")
    1982 2CV6 ("Gaston") On the road! (Woohoo!)
    1957 Slough 2CV ("Alphonse") Waiting in the wings
    1975 GS Pallas ("GiSelle") Also waiting in the wings
    And for Fun, 1968 Mini Deluxe ("The R & D'luxe" 1078cc, Grin Factor 100!)

  8. #8
    Fellow Frogger!
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    I'm a DS owner but still following your rebuild thread. very interesting.

    Can I talk photo-technical just for a moment please? The images are coming up great and not overly pixelated - yet are within the 100kb limit. How did you do it please? is there something you have stripped out of the files to leave only essential pixel data or something? Did you use 'ImageMagick' command lines as Seasick recommends??
    1968 DS21bvh Pallas in Gris Palladium

    Restoration blog: https://ds-restoration.blogspot.co.uk

  9. #9
    1000+ Posts pottsy's Avatar
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    Hi Budge.

    I use Irfanview version 4.5 64 bit on a Win 7 PC. I crop to suit, then resize to 800 x 600 pixels before renaming for posting.

    I've been using Irfanview for years and it's a great product. Mr Google is your friend in finding it.

    Cheers, Pottsy
    Buvito Ergo Sum!

    The Fleet:

    2018 C3 Shine ("Oscar" Mrs P's)
    1974 D Special Manual Sedan ("Moby Dick")
    2006 C5 HDI Wagon Auto ("Mephistopheles")
    1982 2CV6 ("Gaston") On the road! (Woohoo!)
    1957 Slough 2CV ("Alphonse") Waiting in the wings
    1975 GS Pallas ("GiSelle") Also waiting in the wings
    And for Fun, 1968 Mini Deluxe ("The R & D'luxe" 1078cc, Grin Factor 100!)

  10. #10
    1000+ Posts pottsy's Avatar
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    Another quick question for the Gurus.

    I've got two types of pushrod tube seals. Initially I thought they might be 16mm for the early motors and 18mm for the later ones, but both are around the same hole diameter.

    I'm going to call them "concentric" (top) and "ridged" to either save, or maybe create more, confusion.

    I've worked out they go on with the holes "looking upwards and inwards" as positioned on the bit of paper in the photo.

    What I'd like to know is which type is preferred? The motor that came out of Gaston had the concentric type in it, hard as nails and leaky.

    I note that Burtons have had new stock made of Viton. Should I chase up some of these or persevere with the ones on hand?

    These are all questions!

    Cheers, Pottsy.
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    Buvito Ergo Sum!

    The Fleet:

    2018 C3 Shine ("Oscar" Mrs P's)
    1974 D Special Manual Sedan ("Moby Dick")
    2006 C5 HDI Wagon Auto ("Mephistopheles")
    1982 2CV6 ("Gaston") On the road! (Woohoo!)
    1957 Slough 2CV ("Alphonse") Waiting in the wings
    1975 GS Pallas ("GiSelle") Also waiting in the wings
    And for Fun, 1968 Mini Deluxe ("The R & D'luxe" 1078cc, Grin Factor 100!)

  11. #11
    Fellow Frogger!
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    Thank you. I'll give it a look.
    1968 DS21bvh Pallas in Gris Palladium

    Restoration blog: https://ds-restoration.blogspot.co.uk

  12. #12
    JBN
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    I think you will find all pushrod tube seals KINDA work. I put on the fancy ones on Daffyduck.

    What I would suggest is you have the heads done by a motorcycle mechanic. It is basically a bike engine and they don't recoil in horror that they are working on a Citroen. I have a father/son motorcycle and outboard engine repairer about 200 metres away and they suggested the polypipe ring compressor which they ALWAYS use on all small engines. Their valve compression setup is far friendlier to small capacity alloy heads.

    John

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    1000+ Posts pottsy's Avatar
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    John, Rob has done all sorts of heads, from bikes up to roaring v12s. (Martini Heads, Bundoora Vic.)

    As I said, I trust his abilities implicitly.

    By fancy ones do you mean the Burton jobbies?

    Cheers, Pottsy.
    Buvito Ergo Sum!

    The Fleet:

    2018 C3 Shine ("Oscar" Mrs P's)
    1974 D Special Manual Sedan ("Moby Dick")
    2006 C5 HDI Wagon Auto ("Mephistopheles")
    1982 2CV6 ("Gaston") On the road! (Woohoo!)
    1957 Slough 2CV ("Alphonse") Waiting in the wings
    1975 GS Pallas ("GiSelle") Also waiting in the wings
    And for Fun, 1968 Mini Deluxe ("The R & D'luxe" 1078cc, Grin Factor 100!)

  14. #14
    JBN
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    No, the Der Franzose special ones.

    John

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    1000+ Posts Ken W's Avatar
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    I would suggest going for the Viton o rings. I fitted some to the oil return tubes on my GS 30 years ago and when saw it again many years later, I looked underneath and it was still dry! - win win.

    Cheers, Ken
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ken W View Post
    I would suggest going for the Viton o rings. I fitted some to the oil return tubes on my GS 30 years ago and when saw it again many years later, I looked underneath and it was still dry! - win win.

    Cheers, Ken
    I agree ! from my GS days Viton is vastly superior...and a GS is an overhead cam 4CV ... says he tongue in cheek.
    In Queensland heat and humidity a leaky air cooled engine that is required to supply demisting air in tropical downpours, and warming cabin air in winter is not nice. Viton will keep it more oil tight and therefore sweeter smelling in winter and summer.

  17. #17
    1000+ Posts pottsy's Avatar
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    Thanks guys. I sorta wish I'd asked this question sooner.

    Given that I have these two sets of the "official" rubber ones, and also given the relatively infrequent nature of Gaston's use, (apart from the proposed trek at Easter) I'll run with the black ones for now and order a set of Viton ones next time I feel the need to enrich the Der Franzose coffers a bit more!

    Cheers, Pottsy.
    Buvito Ergo Sum!

    The Fleet:

    2018 C3 Shine ("Oscar" Mrs P's)
    1974 D Special Manual Sedan ("Moby Dick")
    2006 C5 HDI Wagon Auto ("Mephistopheles")
    1982 2CV6 ("Gaston") On the road! (Woohoo!)
    1957 Slough 2CV ("Alphonse") Waiting in the wings
    1975 GS Pallas ("GiSelle") Also waiting in the wings
    And for Fun, 1968 Mini Deluxe ("The R & D'luxe" 1078cc, Grin Factor 100!)

  18. #18
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    Bugger. You come to Perth when we are in Inverell at a Renault 4CV Muster!! I would have hoped to be hospitable but alas....

    Ah well....
    JohnW

    Renault 4CV 1951
    Renault R8 1965
    Renault Scenic 2005 (wife's)
    Renault Scenic 2007 (mine)
    Renault Scenic 2006 (daughter's)
    CitroŽn CX Pallas 1980

    National Co-ordinator, Renault 4CV Register of Australia

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