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Ben Powers

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About Ben Powers

  • Birthday 11/07/1985

Previous Fields

  • Car type
    Mx5. Looking to upgrade...
  • Full name
    Ben Powers

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location
    Kettering, Northants
  • Interests
    Really like driving, really don't like fixing (because you have to stop driving to do that). Clubman autotest/autosolos and Sunday drives in the country make me happy.

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Ben Powers's Achievements

Getting there Builder

Getting there Builder (3/5)



  1. First forum post for many years, forgot I had an account! Bought a cheap V8 RH 2B on a whim years ago, had it for the coldest 3 months of the year, t'was a dog, promptly sold it. Just sold my business and I have a bit of play money coming in at the end of the month to do it properly this time. I'm looking for maximum driving, minimum faffing, as I view the spanners as a necessary evil rather than part of the attraction. I'm thinking GBS Zero, simply because they seem the best value '7's. Ideal spec would include; Modern/new (read relatively trouble free) engine, preference for Zetec or mx5 on the basis of previous experience driving those. Wide body/lowered floors/touring (I'm big and fat!) Proper diff >150bhp Looking in the £5-£10k range. Buying advice and or potential matches gratefully received. I have seen a couple in the for sale section that have gone that would have been perfect. Many thanks in advance. Ben (ben-powers@live.co.uk)
  2. Thanks chaps, already have someone happy to throw £5k at it so it looks like you were right in saying if I change my mind I can pass it on. I'd definitely come back to a 'hood though, just when I've got a double garage with heating. I'm thinking Zero + rotary engine in dark blue.... one day...!
  3. Well, I tried, but I just can't leave my cosy/safe/wife-approved/practical '5 for this awesome toy. It is now on the fleabay to fund a supercharger/suspension upgrade for the '5. http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=230977869808
  4. Righto, I'll give it a go thanks!
  5. So. Despite some set backs, like putting all the head bolts in and noticing the alternator bolt had to go in first, then then repeating the process and realising I'd forgotten the sodding gasket, and then repeating it and realising I;d forgotten the exhaust gaskets etc etc. It now lives :-) BUT. I do definitely have an airlock in the system. The pipe running from the inlet manifold to the top of the radiator can only run at the height of the top of the filler resorvoir. How on earth do I eliminate this? Now its running its going straight on ebay, sadly, but I want to get it properly sorted so I can sell it in good conscience. I've tried topping it up and driving and topping up and driving but the temp gauge still sits on the minimum stop. I've tried massaging the offending pipe and it gurgles but doesn't fill with water. I've tried swivelling it round so as to run as low as possible but the thermostat housing means it must leave the inlet manifold in an upwards direction. :-/ Anything obvious I'm missing?
  6. Thanks very much guys. I think, given the weeping at the inlet manifold that I'll have to replace that anyway, whether or not its the real problem. I should be able to get on that this week, having a nosey around it last night it does appear to be within my trainee spanner operator skills. Pictures to follow in due course. It would be really helpful if someone could point me in the direction of the right gasket once I do have some photos up. I'm clueless as to what is actually in there except for a 3.5l RV8 with carbs (offenhauser or something like that?). I really am a n00b at this stuff! If that doesn't fix the problem then its off to my local friendly back street garage for greasy overalled old boys to work on. I'd rather have it done properly than risk me buggering it all up for the sake of a few pounds. The good news is that I'm sure the engine didn't overheat at all. The temp guage never went above 90, I appreciate if there is no water in there the gauge is useless but I'd have thought if that were the case it would read lower. The 5th gear crawl home was about 60 and engine operated normally. There was still water in the header tank when I got home.
  7. :-D Excellent. The water is clear, even when in 'jacuzzi mode' there is no sign of oil in the water, likewise the oil on the dipstick is clean. And the engine runs normally (not technically the same as smoothly!). So inlet manifold fixing. Dare I ask, is it a case of bolts off, replace gasket, bolts on?
  8. A bit more advice from the RHOCaR bods please. Having just completed a very fun 2x1minutes driving at a sunny autotest I had water blasting out of the cap on my water bottle. Revving the engine produces bubbles in said water. The general consensus is that the head gasket has gone, there is water weeping from the inlet manifold too. Its a Rover V8, still running ok, limped the 5 miles home in 5th at 30mph without issue and water temp reading normal. I'm a newbie mechanic. How serious is this problem? Something I can take to a garage (any recommendations in the Kettering area?) (what sort of price should I expect?) Something I can fix at home in a very basically equipped garage? Time to sell the car to someone more handy? As ever, all help gratefully received.
  9. Thanks Pete, I'll fine tune these tomorrow now I have an idea what to be doing. The brake system is wet, thanks to an almighty hail storm the minute I had everything disassembled and spread out. I did then spray brake fluid everywhere by pressing the pedal without the drum on but as it was coming from inside the system I think I managed to avoid getting any on the pads. A short test drive shows the brakes to be effective, even improved, so I think i got away with it.
  10. *FACEPALM* That'll be the adjuster that I looked at, fiddled with, then decided that it was just a mismatched fixing and it couldn't possibly help me. Its ok though, because after careful consideration I went with the "jam a screw driver into the internals and see which bits move and what does what" approach. This is a patented approach not to be tried by amateurs. Got the brakes right out of adjustment, brake fluid everywhere, roughly adjusted them back in so the drums would go on. Handbrake now better, not perfect, but will stop the car (wouldn't before) and will lock the left wheel (wouldn't before). Pedal still stiff and all wheels still lock (*phew*). I'll give it Sunday's 'solo to let everything settle in before I give the screw adjuster a tweak. I now know how to fix faulty fuel pump wiring, *and* how to adjust a handbrake :-D Thanks again!
  11. Photos; http://i1067.photobucket.com/albums/u423/ben_powers1/20130419_170209.jpg http://i1067.photobucket.com/albums/u423/ben_powers1/20130419_170114.jpg Handbrake fully on - http://i1067.photobucket.com/albums/u423/ben_powers1/20130419_170155.jpg & fully off - http://i1067.photobucket.com/albums/u423/ben_powers1/20130419_170142.jpg The handbrake works not at all for the first couple of clicks, then barely for the next few, pulled as hard as possible it doesn't appear to be at the top of its travel but it is incapable of locking the back wheels even when turning hard (as is possible) on wet tarmac. Looking at the level mechanism as the level approaches vertical the movement of the bracket is similarly vertical and so not applying any more force on the cable. My bodge of wrapping the cable around a nut/bolt won;t work as the cable isn't bendy enough.
  12. The interwebs seems to suggest reversing and braking will auto adjust. Any truth in that?
  13. :-( Bad times. I can only imagine, not being a dog person until Mrs came along. Ours are only 5 but I know I'm going to be gutted when one or the other or both kick the bucket. I can promise you I'm making the most of them, my two little buggers are spoilt rotten, and they know it, and they have come to expect it!
  14. Right, thanks very much for the advice so far. I have been mega busy with work and so missed the 'solo last weekend that I wanted to be sorted for, and the next 'solo this weekend means that a quick fix is the only option. I've just had a nosey with a view to adjusting the existing handbrake. There is no obvious adjustment on the handbrake itself. The handbrake cable runs freely through a bracket which is attached to the handbrake lever by a metal rod. There isn't anywhere to move the rod/lever fixing to, nor is there anywhere to move the bracket/rod fixing. So, next step, on to the drums, much swearing and I got the cover off. I can see where the cable comes in and how it applies the brakes, but once again, no obvious method of tightening it, other than unclipping the end of the cable, shortening it and reclipping it. Even that looks impossible as there is no way to get behind the lever the cable operates. On the basis I have no idea what I'm doing, and the brakes are fairly important, I've left it at that to come and beg advice on here. Which bit is the auto adjuster and what shall I do to free it up? Or, am I being a numpty with the handbrake level adjustment? It crossed my mind that given the cable runs freely over the central bracket, would an effective bodge be to just crimp/clamp/wrap/sandwich/bolt or otherwise fix a small loop in the exposed and easily accessible cable in front of the diff, thus shortening/tightening it? Thanks again chaps.
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