Oil Leaks Continued 
Click to Enlarge Image – Oil Leaks ContinuedAfter cleaning the the air intake system, we got back to the oil leaks. We had to order the valve cover gasket and once that arrived we began pulling things apart to get to the old gasket.

The top cover came off way to easily – I should have known that would be trouble. The acorn nut flew off the stud and dropped down somewhere into the engine. 2 days and several hours of searching have not turned it up and its a mystery as to where it went.

The only good news in this case is that the search prompted us to remove the lower trays that attach from the bottom of the car to protect the radiator from stones flying up. The are covered with 23 years worth of sludge, oil, grease, dirt and who knows what else.

They have been scraped to remove the worst of the grime and are scheduled for degreasing, sanding and painting in the near future – as soon as I am done cleaning the valve cover which also has a layer of “stuff” to be removed. Several days of parts washering, wire wheeling and now dremeling have removed most of it.

Shown here – one “before” – well actually after the sludge removal but before sanding – the sandblast cabinet we got last year works really well to remove alot of rust in a short time.
Belts and Valves 
Belts and ValvesAfter setting the timing, removing the pulleys and both timing belt covers, it was fairly easy to get to the timing belt. The water pump / alternator belt was also showing some signs of age so we have a new one.

The good news is that the timing belt coming off appears to be a non Honda belt (hopefully meaning that it was changed at about 60k like it was supposed to be).

The valves are now extremely clean and inside the valve cover is clean enough to eat off of. Next we’ll adjust the valuves and replace the belt then reassemble.

We have fuel line hose to replace all the very soaked and dirty hoses currently ont he car. Someday I hope to get rid of the hideous orange wires but after spending $400 on necessary parts I decided I can live with the color for another few months!
Timing Belt and Valves Adjustment (August 6th)
Click to Enlarge Image – Timing Belt and Valves AdjustmentThe timing belt went on w/o too much of an effort and since the lower cover is cracked in a couple places and the gasket is oil soaked and does not fit well, we are ordering new covers.

I got a great lesson in how to adjust valves. About 1/2 were still properly adjusted which is pretty good considering we have no idea when they were last done.

I was in the middle of sandblasting the 2nd skid plate when the compressor overheated. By the time it was cooled down it was too late to continue. Hope to be done with that soon so it can be painted and reinstalled.

Fuel Lines, Plate BracketsNo exciting pictures but we made a little more progress. Replaced the fuel lines and filter as well as removing the 2 very badly rusted front plate brackets.

About 4 turns with a ratchet and I heard a snap meaning something broke. Not a very good design those brackets – they attach underneath the bumper and then come up around in front of it and the plate bolts onto them. Joe had to use the dremel to saw through part of the bolts and then use a hammer and chisel to remove the brackets.

We would have been a bit more careful but we have plans to make a small engineering change in the way the plate sits on the front of car. I have never liked this design – my 86 Accord had the same style and you can never get your plate to sit straight!

After we get the bolt material and rust cleaned out of the bumper we are going to drill some new mounting holes through the front of the bumper and then get a plate holder to mount there instead.


I also finally finished sand blasting the 2nd skid plate – or mostly finished – the compressor decided to act up again so I finished up with the wire wheel and sandpaper. I got one coat of primer on and hope to finish up the painting in the next couple days.

Here’s a picture of the nicely cleaned up and painted air cleaner box and cover.
Engine Bay Cleanup (August 14th)
Click to Enlarge Image – Engine Bay CleanupBeen spending many hours on engine bay cleanup and detailing the last 2 days. Really making progress now – it looks like such a big job but once you start it goes quicker than you think.

We removed the battery, box and mounting bracket – thats going to be a job cleaning that up! Also took off the voltage regulator and washer fluid jug to get down to the bare metal. Looking pretty darn clean in there right now.

The plan is to get some spray paint that is a very close match and repaint the engine compartment that way. First have to finish up cleaning, then sand before the painting can start.