Monday, April 26, 2010


Tin ware, inlet manifold and heat exchangers have to come off (Courtesy Autodata)When the rotor arm lines up with number one plug lead terminal, it will also be in line with the notch in the distributor rim and the crankshaft pulley notch should be at the top. (Courtesy Autodata)

Having a split crankcase and cylinder barrels gives the flat four more in common with a motorcycle engine than the average car engine, and the stripping and rebuilding of the Beetle engine is much easier than working on most other car engines. To properly inspect the internals, however, requires that you have access to highly accurate measuring equipment which V, expensive to buy. This measuring equipment tan reveal a need for certain engineering operations to be carried out, again using equipment which is unlikely to be available.
Before starting a restoration, it is worth while borrowing a compression tester and using this on all four cylinders to ascertain whether any are low. The desired compression varies between 100-142 psi according to the engine type, but if all four cylinders give similar readings in excess of 100-110 psi and within 10 psi of each other then compression is OK. If one or more cylinders give low readings then expect to find leakage either past the piston rings (worn or damaged rings or bores), past the barrel and /cylinder head or a valve (burnt valves/seats). If one or more readings are tow, then try putting a little engine oil into the bore via the spark plug hole and re-test. If the reading is now normal, the chances are that the leakage is past the piston rings: if it is unaltered. look for burnt valves. Also, try pulling and pushing the crankshaft pulley to check for excessive end float (over 0.005 inch) and lifting and lowering it to check for play in the mains – if you can feel any play here then a bottom-end overhaul is called for.
If you were to strip your engine and then take the components to a professional engineering shop for inspection and for any machining work found necessary to be carried out, you could discover that the costs of the work plus any components which prove essential by far exceeds the cost of a straight replacement reconditioned unit.
Because of this. it is strongly recommended that you give serious consideration to replacing your own engine with a reconditioned unit. In addition to a straight swap, this gives you the option of buying a more powerful unit or one built to withstand use with unleaded fuel.
A clean work area is vital, and cleanliness is of the greatest importance generally when working on an engine. You can strip the Beetle engine on an4, flat surface such as a workbench or even on the floor, but the task is much easier if you can buy or borrow one of the special bench or floor standing mounts which bolt onto one half of the crankcase and allow the unit to be swivelled for improved access. Before starting to strip the engine, drain the oil.
Remove the spark plugs then turn the engine over by pulling the generator belt until the notch in the front half of the pulley aligns with the screw in the generator. Ilse a screwdriver between the two to lock the generator. then undo the pulley nut. remove the drive belt and replace the pulley nut with its shims. Undo the clamp which holds the generator and the set screws which hold the Can shroud. then lift the assembly clear of the crankcase.
Undo the inlet manifold nuts and lift the manifold and carburettor clear. Unbolt and remove the oil cooler, then blank off the oil feed and return holes in the crankcase to prevent anything from (tittering it.
Remove the thermostat. Remove the distributor and fuel pump.
Unbolt the heat exchangers/exhaust assembly complete. Remove the crankshaft pulley bolt, and use a puller to remove the pulley. Remove the clutch.

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