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1981 Mini City 1000

This section is for Mini projects and restorations and also the place to show off your pride and joy.

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ctwomey
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Joined: Thu Jan 03, 2019 9:44 am
Whats your location?: Ballybrittas, Co. Laois
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What Minis have you?: I owned a 1977 Mini 850 when I was in my late teens. I owned a 1986 Mini Chelsea that I imported from the UK. Also owned a MG Metro that was bored out to 1293. Restoring a 1981 Dublin Mini City.
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1981 Mini City 1000

Post by ctwomey » Thu Dec 26, 2019 11:37 pm

Hi all,

Just thought I would kick off this thread on my new Mini. I bought the car in October of this year. It's an original Dublin car, matching numbers etc. so hoping to keep it as original as possible. Body work is in exceptional condition for a 39 year old car. Still will require some welding. First goal is to get the body shell 100% first before looking at the mechanics.

So far I have stripped it down to the bare shell. Only a few rubber grummets, rear brake line and fuel line to remove. Most recently removed that dreaded bitumen sound deadening off the floor and rear seat panel, messy stuff and filled a bucket with the stuff. Soft mallet and flat head screw driver worked well.

Some of the existing panels will need a bit of panel beating. Panels that will require replacing include, battery box, drivers door outer sill, possibly door and boot outer skins, front end is quite battered too as it got a knock before and was poorly repaired, nothing serious though.

Struggling to identify the red colour code so if anyone knows it would be greatly appreciated. I think it is BLVC287 Carnelean Red (CDE).

This isn't a short term project. Going to take my time.
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woody
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Re: 1981 Mini City 1000

Post by woody » Fri Dec 27, 2019 12:07 pm

That body looks fairly solid alright. Good to see another one saved. Good luck with build.
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ctwomey
NON Member
Posts: 8
Joined: Thu Jan 03, 2019 9:44 am
Whats your location?: Ballybrittas, Co. Laois
Region: Eastern
What Minis have you?: I owned a 1977 Mini 850 when I was in my late teens. I owned a 1986 Mini Chelsea that I imported from the UK. Also owned a MG Metro that was bored out to 1293. Restoring a 1981 Dublin Mini City.
Contact:

Re: 1981 Mini City 1000

Post by ctwomey » Fri Feb 07, 2020 2:16 pm

Given that the weather has been rather cold, instead of doing some body work I decided to start rebuilding the engine.
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Crank looks really good with no marks on the journals. I will get it verified in a machine shop. The seized pistons have come out of the block too and I have started to strip the block including water and oil plugs to remove all the grime.
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Removed 95% grime using an engine degreaser. Who knew it was yellow :D
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Head and Block are now soaking in a bath of argi-grade molasses to remove all internal rust from the water jackets.
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I will remove both the Head and Block this weekend and power wash before putting back in the molasses for another week.

One thing of note I have discovered is that the 99H/791P engine is an A Block while the 99H/791PZ is the A+ Block. Other items are shared e.g. pistons (6cc - Low CRs) are the same. Not too sure that Guess Works picks up the subtle change as it just comes up as an A Block.

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DaveC
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Re: 1981 Mini City 1000

Post by DaveC » Fri Feb 07, 2020 4:38 pm

Very good, keep us updated on progress!

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Billy
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Re: 1981 Mini City 1000

Post by Billy » Sat Feb 08, 2020 7:25 am

Always enjoy reading a good restoration thread. Keep it up.

Jknight
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Re: 1981 Mini City 1000

Post by Jknight » Sun Feb 09, 2020 8:01 am

It's amazing to see the differences with Irish registered cars and their UK counterparts for rust. Looking forward to seeing the project, I'm currently starting my own one.

ctwomey
NON Member
Posts: 8
Joined: Thu Jan 03, 2019 9:44 am
Whats your location?: Ballybrittas, Co. Laois
Region: Eastern
What Minis have you?: I owned a 1977 Mini 850 when I was in my late teens. I owned a 1986 Mini Chelsea that I imported from the UK. Also owned a MG Metro that was bored out to 1293. Restoring a 1981 Dublin Mini City.
Contact:

Re: 1981 Mini City 1000

Post by ctwomey » Fri Feb 21, 2020 3:42 pm

After almost 3 weeks in the molasses bath, the engine block and cylinder head have come up rust free. A quick clean with the power hose and a spray of WD40 to prevent flash rusting I have now brought them down to High Precision in Tullow.

Minimum skim of the block deck to verify flatness. New cam bearings and also remove the broken engine id tag rivet the broke will removing.
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Minimum skim of the cylinder head plus the valve seats will be recut as they are a bit pitted on the 2nd and 3rd cylinder exhaust valves. Broken heater valve stud will need removing too.
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Still need verification on the big end and main journals before ordering bearings. I have only one micrometer and it doesn't cover that range. Need a few more fine measuring tools. The good ones are kinda pricey.
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Original pistons are shot plus they are the low CR ones too. So have decided to rebore out +20 thou and using new Powermax 20950 pistons that are flat-topped and bullet proof and by my own calculations should bring the CR from 8.3:1 to 9.6:1.
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woody
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Re: 1981 Mini City 1000

Post by woody » Sat Feb 22, 2020 10:22 am

You might want to consider hardened valve seats to make the head unleaded. I presume you are uprating the cam
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ctwomey
NON Member
Posts: 8
Joined: Thu Jan 03, 2019 9:44 am
Whats your location?: Ballybrittas, Co. Laois
Region: Eastern
What Minis have you?: I owned a 1977 Mini 850 when I was in my late teens. I owned a 1986 Mini Chelsea that I imported from the UK. Also owned a MG Metro that was bored out to 1293. Restoring a 1981 Dublin Mini City.
Contact:

Re: 1981 Mini City 1000

Post by ctwomey » Sat Feb 22, 2020 11:24 am

woody wrote:
Sat Feb 22, 2020 10:22 am
You might want to consider hardened valve seats to make the head unleaded. I presume you are uprating the cam
Correct, planning on using a SW5-07 cam as it seems to be a great all rounder. Going to spend the minimum on the head for now as it is an early CAM4810 and not the later one with exhaust valve seat inserts. Really just a quick cleanup. I have my eye on a 12G202 which is on an engine in my father in law's house that would be a more suitable head to have all the work done on. It would be the same head as an early 997cc Cooper.

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Billy
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Re: 1981 Mini City 1000

Post by Billy » Sat Feb 22, 2020 12:50 pm

I'm fascinated by the use of molasses. How does that work?

ctwomey
NON Member
Posts: 8
Joined: Thu Jan 03, 2019 9:44 am
Whats your location?: Ballybrittas, Co. Laois
Region: Eastern
What Minis have you?: I owned a 1977 Mini 850 when I was in my late teens. I owned a 1986 Mini Chelsea that I imported from the UK. Also owned a MG Metro that was bored out to 1293. Restoring a 1981 Dublin Mini City.
Contact:

Re: 1981 Mini City 1000

Post by ctwomey » Sat Feb 22, 2020 1:04 pm

Billy wrote:
Sat Feb 22, 2020 12:50 pm
I'm fascinated by the use of molasses. How does that work?
It starts fermenting and consumes the iron oxide but doesn't touch the iron itself. Any metal has to be grease and paint free, but if there is paint it's not too bad because the chances are it was protecting the original metal. Needs to be left for min of two weeks with some agitation each week.

It's far more environmentally friendly compared with hot caustic soda baths. Once it's finished you could pore it on your lawn as a fertiliser (haven't tried that yet). Supposedly it can get very smelly but the only smell I detected was the same smell as beer fermenting.

ctwomey
NON Member
Posts: 8
Joined: Thu Jan 03, 2019 9:44 am
Whats your location?: Ballybrittas, Co. Laois
Region: Eastern
What Minis have you?: I owned a 1977 Mini 850 when I was in my late teens. I owned a 1986 Mini Chelsea that I imported from the UK. Also owned a MG Metro that was bored out to 1293. Restoring a 1981 Dublin Mini City.
Contact:

Re: 1981 Mini City 1000

Post by ctwomey » Sat Mar 28, 2020 4:57 pm

While in lockdown and waiting for the block and cylinder head to come back from the machine shop, thought I would start on the gear box.

Stripped it down completely and have it soaking in a water based heavy duty cleaner to remove all the oil and grease, then going to send the aluminium parts off to be vapour blasted.
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The first motion shaft outer bearing shell was easy enough to get out, but the outer idler bearing was a nightmare to get out. Tore out the inner needle bearings and made a steel plate to pull it out.
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The gears themselves look very good. No damage. I will still replace the layshaft and needle bearings plus the inner 1st motion shaft needle bearing. The two main bearings look really good and I will keep those. Idlers bearings and outer 1st motion shaft bearings will be replaced too.
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