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Thread: Phill's Nova Project finally begins

  1. #731
    Senior Member Phill's Avatar
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    Took my car for a test by my friendly local MOT inspector. He carried out a safety check on the car (effectively a dummy MOT) to ensure it was fit for the road and discovered the U clamp on the steering box was loose allowing some movement of the box. But this was an easy fix just requiring the pinch bolt to be tightened up. He also suggested I tighten up the front wheel bearings as there was some play (though being taper roller bearings these are easily adjustable and I had deliberately left them slightly loose as I understood they could overheat if the wrong torque setting were applied). Apart from these two issues he gave the car a clean bill of health much to my relief.
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  2. #732
    Senior Member BlueNova's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phill View Post
    Took my car for a test by my friendly local MOT inspector. He carried out a safety check on the car (effectively a dummy MOT) to ensure it was fit for the road and discovered the U clamp on the steering box was loose allowing some movement of the box. But this was an easy fix just requiring the pinch bolt to be tightened up. He also suggested I tighten up the front wheel bearings as there was some play (though being taper roller bearings these are easily adjustable and I had deliberately left them slightly loose as I understood they could overheat if the wrong torque setting were applied). Apart from these two issues he gave the car a clean bill of health much to my relief.
    Excellent news Phill .... maybe you should now ask him to put her through a formal MOT, since it should pass with no record of any faults.

    I'm taking the van for an MOT tomorrow morning and intend to have a chat with them about the Nova ... even although it'll be a while before I'm ready.

    Alistair

  3. #733
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phill View Post
    Took my car for a test by my friendly local MOT inspector. He carried out a safety check on the car (effectively a dummy MOT) to ensure it was fit for the road and discovered the U clamp on the steering box was loose allowing some movement of the box. But this was an easy fix just requiring the pinch bolt to be tightened up. He also suggested I tighten up the front wheel bearings as there was some play (though being taper roller bearings these are easily adjustable and I had deliberately left them slightly loose as I understood they could overheat if the wrong torque setting were applied). Apart from these two issues he gave the car a clean bill of health much to my relief.
    I would question his opinion on the front bearings!! If he is not familiar with the Beetle setup the end play once the wheel is on does feel excessive by most other car standards. Over tightening will over heat and destroy the bearings. If you do not have a dial gauge to set them up then use the rule that you tighten the nut until you can not move the washer then back off just enough to be able to turn the washer with a small screwdriver.

    Dirk

  4. #734
    Senior Member Phill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dirk View Post
    I would question his opinion on the front bearings!! If he is not familiar with the Beetle setup the end play once the wheel is on does feel excessive by most other car standards. Over tightening will over heat and destroy the bearings. If you do not have a dial gauge to set them up then use the rule that you tighten the nut until you can not move the washer then back off just enough to be able to turn the washer with a small screwdriver.

    Dirk
    That's precisely the method I used when I first adjusted the bearings (I had looked it up on internet forums) though I must admit I was a bit concerned even then about the amount of end play and when the MOT tester advised me to tighten them up a bit I assumed this was good advice. However, if you're saying the end play does feel excessive by modern standards I think I might ignore his advice and leave them as they are.

    However, he was definately right about the pinch bolt being loose on the steering box - something I think I must have overlooked when I last fitted the steering column and once aligned had forgotten to re-tighten the bolt. This alone was a valuable lesson in making sure an independant examiner checks the car over.
    "The most beautiful kit car in the world - Motor"

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  5. #735
    Senior Member Phill's Avatar
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    Decided to re-check the bearings anyway (no point in seeking expert opinion then ignoring it) and discovered there was indeed scope to tighten the n/s even when using the method as described above by Dirk. I have now adjusted the bearings which has reduced the amount of endfloat and the pinchbolt on the steering box (which was very loose) has been fully tightened.

    I've decided that once I've done a few more miles in the car I will make a point of going over it very carefully to ensure everything remains tight and nothing has worked loose.
    "The most beautiful kit car in the world - Motor"

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  6. #736
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    Interesting discussion.
    Can anyone explain why the front bearings are installed this way?
    i.e, why they require this kind of non-torqued set-up?

    Contrast with the rear axle nut, which needs a 3 foot extension bar to tighten it up to ~200lb+

    Are the the front bearings different in the way they sit between the steering knuckle/Hub?

  7. #737
    Senior Member Phill's Avatar
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    The front bearings are tapered Steve - so the tighter you turn the nut the harder they press against the casing - which is why you have to be carefull not to overtighten them. I assume the bearings on the rear aren't tapered so it doesn't affect them no matter how tight you turn the rear axle nut
    "The most beautiful kit car in the world - Motor"

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  8. #738
    ***Euro-Nova Supporter*** Spacenut's Avatar
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    I believe that is correct - I have the same requirements for my rear hub bearings (Alfa), which use a dual race ball-bearing. I can't remember the torque setting but it is over 200 lb/ft, similar to the VW.

    My front bearings on the other hand are taper rollers (Ford) and require a very small pre-load of around 25 lb/in, although they don't use anything as sophisticated as a pinch bolt, just a castellated nut and a split pin...

    Most taper roller bearings all have some endfloat, but the specifications for the VW are particularly lax, presumably due to the age of the design.

    Lauren
    only Pythagoras can save me now!

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