TI tidy 23: Home!

I guess I was closer than I thought. The list seemed daunting: set alignment, hook up blow by canister to breather, dip stick breather, intake manifold port and plumb it out the back, investigate a flickering dynamo light, hard mount the seats which required removal of no longer useable VW/Audi seat belt tension spools, double checking a few bolts for tightness and installing the hood. Here’s how it went.

IMG_9395I think it might look better in this picture than it is. Hood fits pretty good. I need to fashion a prop for it since I don’t think the stock prop will fit. If I paint it I think it will stay this color.

IMG_9391This is the rig at the back of the car. Following Jim Neill’s alignment instructions and fabricating a helper from jack stands and a level I was able to align the front wheels working alone. The silver jack stand keeps the twine under tension, the black one keeps it at axle height and the level is 1 inch thick, which, since the track of the front wheels is 2 inches wider than the back, allows you to get them parallel.

IMG_9385Step one is to center the steering wheel. You have to check this frequently because turning the tie rod link centers tends to turn the steering wheel.

IMG_9384Another helper up front. Step two (once the helpers are in place and the steering wheel is straight) is to align the left front wheel so that the string, when spaced 1 inch off the back wheel touches both edges of the tire at the same time when drawn across it at axle height. The back edge is moved in and out by adjusting the length of the tie rod on this end. You have to check to make sure the steering wheel is still centered. It’s an iterative process.

IMG_9386This should give you a pretty good idea what it takes. Once the length on this side is set you measure the tie rod link pin center to pin center, subtract 5mm from that measurement and that is the length you set the right tie rod at. This wheel was about 5/8″ toed out with the steering wheel centered.

IMG_9390The right front wheel was toed out about an inch. I discovered the inner tie rod end on this side was new and it wasn’t threaded on to the center rod to split the length difference evenly with the other tie rod end so I had to break it loose and thread it in so they were even. Once this was done I set this side at the measure on the other side minus 5mm, checked the centering of the steering wheel and called it good. The last step is to use the center link adjustment to make the right wheel parallel to the left and back. In my case it had to be lengthened until this side wasn’t toed out.

IMG_9392Once the alignment was set I hooked up this breather canister to the valve cover, dip stick breather and the vacuum port on the intake manifold. I still need to get some 3/4″ ID hose to plumb the bottom orifice to somewhere past the firewall and under the car.

After the breather was hooked up I mounted the seats and hood -sorry, no pictures. I had a moment of worry the first time I shut the hood but the cable pull works and opens the hood. Good deal. At this point I drove home and lucky me, the dynamo light went out just like it’s supposed to. I’ll dig in under the dash looking for a short before too long. Up next is using the TI and reporting on its road-worthiness. Felt good on the short drive home.

TI Tidy 24.
TI Tidy 22.

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