Jump to content

It's here! (Bedford RL)

Recommended Posts

The compressor is currently on my workbench, having had the sump washed out with petrol to break up the sludge a bit more, and new oil put in it to circulate for a while to flush out any more lurking water/petrol/grot. I've also jet-washed the outsides to de-sludge the unit -- since it was spreading slime to everything it touched -- and will be aiming to do a bit more of a tear-down, in-depth inspection, and thorough cleaning over the weekend, if work doesn't get too crazy.

It's amazing how much time it takes to get the compressor out of its hidey-hole!

  • Like 1

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Teardown time!



Not pretty, but cleaned up pretty easily and there's no scoring in the bores. The check-valves all seem to work quite nicely, and I cleaned out the passageways as best as I could. One of the bolts holding the inlet manifold down has a pretty gacked thread, so I've got a tap on order to chase the threads in the head just to make sure, and I'll get some new bolts on order. (1/4" UNF, so nothing particularly exotic.)

I also had to break up the remains of the filler cap, since it seemed to have bonded itself into the threads and was stubbornly refusing to rotate. (I'd drilled two holes through it so that I could use circlip pliers to try unwind it. It bent the circlip pliers, then the edges of the holes started to break up.) Very careful -- almost surgical -- chipping with a thin chisel, and picks...


A tap for chasing the threads in the filler cap is also on its way. (1" 14TPI, as best I can tell.)

Salvaged the dipstick, though! Should be able to re-use that in the new filler cap, with any luck.



The wash-out with petrol, and new oil, got rid of a good bit of water and oil that was lurking in the passageways, and the bulk of the grot on the inside of the case.


That's what was left in the sump. Also lurking there is the remains of the filler plug.


Sludge vs Industrial Jetwash: Jetwash wins.


Concerningly, the little relief valve on the oil pump looked like it was stuck open. It's also picked up a few fragments of the plastic filler knob after my previous precision removal process, but it was already showing signs of problems even before then. The back-side of the other part to this relief valve had a much older-looking deposit built up on it, and it was wedged open.


It's a pretty clever little mechanism, this oil pump. The shaft of the eccentric is the pump piston, and it's hollow -- with a little brass orifice in the end -- so that the pressurised oil squirts up it and is forced into the crankshaft; the pressure relief is a flat plate over a drilling, held down by two little screws with springs, such that once the pressure reaches its limit, it lifts the plate and squirts out. Nice piece of design and engineering.

Unfortunately, a combination of that contaminated oil and a completely-bypassing oil pump has not done the crankshaft or con-rods any good. I ran out of time today to investigate further, but there is discolouration on the crank, and the big end of the №1 rod is scored up pretty badly. I haven't removed the №2 rod yet, but I expect it to be more of the same.


I will investigate further tomorrow. For now, I'll remain optimistic.

  • Like 1

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites



You have tried as hard as you can to recover the one that you have.  I have got on that works if you would like to have it. 



Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
11 hours ago, attleej said:



You have tried as hard as you can

Would suggest he's not finished trying yet.  Whole thing looks like it could live again to fight another day. With a bit of patience and skilled engineering, it'll be good.

Loved the bit in the vid, earlier on, pouring petrol straight down the carb to get it to run.  You might need a better supply if you are planning a run out somewhere, perhaps a fairy liquid bottle.  You can just squirt it in when you need to put your foot down

  • Haha 1

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites
11 minutes ago, Zero-Five-Two said:

Would suggest he's not finished trying yet.  Whole thing looks like it could live again to fight another day. With a bit of patience and skilled engineering, it'll be good.

Yup, barely gotten started on it yet; this is just the tear-down to find out how bad it is. I do enjoy my suffering. 😁 I certainly don't think it's so far gone as to be irreparable. Certainly not by the standards of some members of this fine forum, who could probably rebuild it if all that was left was the broken filler cap!  😁

The other rod is as bad as the first, no great surprises there.



I also cracked  open the Drawer of Excessive Precision* for my micrometers and did a quick bit of measuring.  The rod journals seem to be within the realm of cleaning up sufficiently with a bit of polishing; the big end bearings having taken the brunt of the damage as expected, being white metal.

The machinists precision G-clamps gave me some numbers (I'm majority metric, so bear with me! 😁) :

№1 rod journal: 22.22mm, №1 big end (vertical, i.e. in line with the rod): 22.5mm. Clearance of 0.28mm, or ~11thou.

№2 rod journal: 22.3mm, №2 big end: 22.45mm. Clearance of ~0.15mm, or a midges under 6thou.

Big ends are just a touch out of spec. :) I'll see what the crankshaft mics out to after I've polished the journals, I can live with it being a hair undersized so long as I can get the rods to match it. I still need to finish tearing the compressor down fully, measuring the bores and whatnot, but so far it looks otherwise to be pretty good. I'll just keep on keeping on, for now. (I also have a couple of weeks booked off work, in the hope that I can put some more time in on the Bedford; so naturally it's going to rain constantly until I run out of time, I'm sure~)


(* Above the Drawer of Insufficient Precision, which houses all my hammers and other tools of "Fit, damn you")

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

I've done a few other little bits and bats since the last update, mostly just putting wiring back together post-'fire' and connecting both beacons up so they now work on the switch. Oh, and some little brackets and whatnot so that can mount a second gauge (Well, so that I can put the air pressure gauge back where it belongs, and still have the tachometer.) along with a hazard switch; now the hazard lights work on a switch, rather than having to twist wires together.


I still need to tweak the bracket for the indicator switch, because it doesn't fit where I first planned it, but that's not the end of the world. All the wiring will be tidied up when it's closer to being completed.

The compressor's been broken down a bit further, and I've got a bearing separator on order so that I can pull the ball-bearings off the compressor crankshaft. The ball-bearings seemed okay at first, but I've noticed that one of the front ones was beginning to feel (and sound) a bit crunchy, so I'm going to replace all three.

Somewhere, I have a notebook with all the measurements I've made. The bores are both in great shape, not tapered or ovalled; and... I'll have to go dig the notebook up to run through the numbers for the crankshaft, but the rods certainly don't feel loose on the crank after giving the crank journals a gentle polishing.

I've also run through the various threads that needed cleaning up (Mostly 1/4UNF; the thread on the nose of the crank is 1/2" BSF, and I'll need to get a new castle nut for that, but I don't see that causing much bother; and the thread for the filler is 3/4" BSP which is handy since I have hydraulic blanks spare in that size. :D )

And I've also gotten a little bit more welding done, mostly just adding some support to the battery tray to stiffen things up.


The air-tank carrier was also tacked in place, so that it can be welded fully at a later date. It's not much fun working in a yard that's slowly turning into a mud-pit, though.


It's not the worst I've had to work in, but it's still distinctly less than pleasant when you're slopping and sliding around trying to move through the work area; it's too much like site-work at my day-job! Also, I keep catching myself on the legs of those metal screens all the time! :grr: It is amazingly frustrating, working out in the back of a car-park!

Edited by Tamber
missed a bit about measurements.
  • Like 1

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now