Wednesday, 18 September 2019

A walk in the country side

A completely non Triumph related post this time! Last Sunday was an exceptional fine day. So I decided to leave the Triumphs at home, as it would almost certainly be far too crowded on the roads in the area with walkers and cyclists. I put on the walking boots and took one of the cameras instead, to explore the area at a more leisurely pace …

Sunday, 15 September 2019

10CR 2019 – The Aftermath

After the successful completion of the 10 Countries Run last week I carried out some post event checks on the car. The first thing I noticed during the run was that it was noticeable more thirsty. And a quick check and clean of all the spark plugs proved this. They were now much more brown coloured than before I fitted the current carburettor needles. Though there also was what looked like a light oil deposit. But as the plugs were dry that’s not something I will worry too much about. Especially bearing in mind that this engine was rebuilt well over 25 years ago and seen a lot of action since!

Another point to inspect was the oil level. Or better the source of the leak! Over the event I think the engine lost/burned between 0,5 to 0,75 litres of oil. Not what you would call very worrying. But as it looks like it is coming from the front crank shaft seal, together with the down pour on the German Autobahn on Saturday, it did make a fair mess under the bonnet and car. In particular the lower right hand side of the engine. Still working on an attack plan to remove this.

Than for the most important bit, the brakes. Shortly before the event I had a go at adjusting the rear brakes, but that attempt was only partially successful. Due to a slight ridge in the drums I wasn’t able to get the shoes out as far as I wanted. So on return I removed the brake drums and dropped them of at local brake specialist C&C Parts for machining. Also used the opportunity to show them the rather sad looking hand brake lever dust covers. They agreed that just over a year was way too short a life span, so they supplied two new sets free of charge. And they finished machining the drums the same day. That’s what I call service!

And with the inside surface of the drums now nice and smooth, I was able to get the shoes two more clicks out with the automatic adjusters.

For the rest the brakes have been performing fairly well during the event though still not how I would like to have them. Under certain conditions the pedal travel still can be a bit vague. Though it has been improving (very slowly) over the event. See how that develops over the next few weeks or months! The only noticeable thing was that the brake fluid level had dropped slightly. But that’s not a big surprise regarding the sort of driving the car’s seen last week.

With the rear of the car jacked up and on axle stands I could also inspect the probable source for an irritating rattling noise. This only occurred under a curtain engine load and while going uphill. As it was clearly felt through the seats rather than heard I suspected the exhaust was touching. It indeed had been, as this bare patch of the rear left chassis leg proves. Still undecided what to do with it as under “normal” driving it doesn’t occur …

Last suspension and brake check were the front bearings. I had some slight worries about the left hand bearings. During the inspection before the event I found that the outer bearing had a very slight yellowish tint over the rollers. But as it was operating smoothly and without any play I just packed some clean grease in. And almost 2800 kilometres later it is still running nice and smoothly. No sounds and no play at all! Maybe I should worry less …

Another Item to check was the clutch master. Shortly before the event I thought it had developed a leak. But after cleaning the area around the clutch pedal's push rod I didn’t find any leaks. And it remained so during the run. Also the level in the reservoir didn’t drop. Though the uncountable number of gear changes have taken their toll on the clutch system's fluid. Especially bearing in mind it was only changed shortly before the event …

Final check was the coolant level (spot on) and the drain hole underneath the water pump. It wasn’t a surprise really that this still was bone dry. To sum it all up, pretty pleased with how the car behaved last week!

Monday, 9 September 2019

Club Triumph's 10 Countries Run 2019

We returned home from another great trip through some countries of Europe. "10 Countries, 4 days, 14 Alpine passes, 2000 miles, 85 Triumphs" as the package states. Or we survived Club Triumph’s 2019 edition of the 10 Countries Run!

To the start in Sedan (F)
The Netherlands-Germany-The Netherlands-Belgium-France
(263 km, 3:10hr)

We headed off towards our hotel near the start early in the afternoon. This way we would be able to spend some time in the town of Sedan. Glad to say our hotel was above average for the town! Some pictures taken during our stroll through the town centre …

 The car in front of our hotel, in the courtyard of the imposing Chateau de Sedan

And seen from the hotel room

Nice NSU 1200 TT in the centre of Sedan

Nice hotel (AirBnB­čśé) in the town's centre, close to the river Meuse

Also came across this abandoned looking TR7 in the town centre.
Actually one of the entrants car’s in front of his hotel …

And a few more pictures of some of Sedan's faded history ...

Day one; Sedan (F) – Bartholom├Ąberg (A)
(655 km, 12:14hr)

As in previous editions the first day was a nice mix of all kinds of roads through most of the countries we would pass through on this run. Some truly memorable driving roads, including the Belgian-Luxembourg-French border area, the Col du Haut de Ribeauville in the French Vosges area, and around the Feldberg in Germany, to name a few. With the best bit, chasing a scooter down a fast flowing road down one of the many mountains in the south of Germany. Good fun! But a few pictures from the start in Sedan first:

Near the summit of the Col du Haut de Ribeauville,
in the Ballon des Vosges Nature reserve

Fantastic turn out of the Swiss TR Club in B├╝tschwill, where they were lining the road to welcome us.
Sadly a lot of the entrants had chosen an alternative route, so missed this sight.

Day two; Bartholom├Ąberg (A) – D├Âlsach (A)
(458 km, 10:40hr)

The weather forecast hadn’t been too good for this day, but the weather turned out to be just fine. And with some lovely driving roads what more do you want! This day’s drive went over some high Alpine passes, inclusing the Silvretta Hochalpenstra├če, Sella Joch, Passo Pordoi, Passo di Campolongo and the Staller Sattel. The last one being a one way pass. Brilliant!

On our way up the Silvretta Hochalpenstra├čeearly in the morning

Official start of day two, near the top of the Silvretta Hochalpenstra├če

Lunch stop in Sankt Ulrich, Gr├Âdner Tal

On the Passo Pordoi

On the Passo Pordoi

On the Passo Pordoi

On the Passo Pordoi

Waiting at the traffic light for the driving direction to change
Staller Sattel on the border between S├╝d Tyrol and Austria

Day three; D├Âlsach (A) – Adelsried (D)
(543 km, 10:13hr)

The third day sadly started as the second day had been forecasted, rather wet and dreary. But despite the bad weather it still was a rather enjoyable day's driving. Which included the Gro├čglockner Hochalpenstra├če, the Gerlos Pa├č and part of the Deutsche Alpenstra├če to name a few.

Official start of day three at the bottom of the Gro├čglockner Hochalpenstra├če
As it was rather wet and chilly we decided to head on ...

… and enjoy the views near the top of the Gro├čglockner Hochalpenstra├če

Lunch stop in Achental, close to the Achen Pa├č

Along the shores of the Plan See, in the Austrian-German border area near Reutte.

Day four; Adelsried (D) – Kerkrade (NL)
Germany-The Netherlands
(632 km, 8:38hr)

Day four started rather wet. Sadly by the time the sun got out we were trying to win back some time which we lost because of roadworks on the B25 between Harburg and M├Âttingen. Sadly they forgot to sign out the diversion. And the GPS decided it wanted to go back to the closed road constantly. I later found out that with the last map update all roadworks and speed cameras had been wiped of the memory. So we had to rely on the road book and the “emergency map” But we came back to the official route in the end. As we had lost half an hour, we decided to press on. Luckily the weather was fine by now which made for a pleasant drive through the heart of Germany. Taking in parts of the Romantische Stra├če and some nice roads between N├Ârdlingen and Miltenberg. Soon after which we hit the motorway near Aschaffenburg the rain returned. And it would accompany us almost right till the end. Though the rain died away slowly when we were crossing the Eifel from the N├╝rburgring towards the finish in Rolduc, where we arrived around 5:00 in the afternoon.

Time for a quick shower and a look at the awesome abbey complex ...

... and some food and beer …

Boring statistics etc.
Total distance covered: 2756 kilometres;
Total fuel consumption: ±300 litres;
Average fuel consumption: ±9,2 km/lt (or 26 mpg)

Maintenance needed: not really! This time all fluid levels remained where they should be throughout the event, close to their maximum marks. Only the engines' oil level dropped a little, but not enough to top it up! They only “problem” (if you could call it that) was a brake light switch that decided to go on strike. But that took only a few minutes to rectify.

Overall the car behaved very well. But there will always be things that need improvement or repairs. The most important one still are the brakes. Though it is safe to say that the work I carried out just before the event did improve the feel of the brake pedal a lot. But from time to time the feel of the brake pedal still is a bit random. That needs to be investigated further. And I found out that crickets are very good at impersonating the sound of chirping brakes ­čśé

Other things that need addressing are the clock that stopped working. So I’ll have to pull the one from the original instrument cluster, because that was working properly. Also one of the four LED’s I put into the instrument cluster decided not to work. Probably a bad contact or something. And the fuel gauge still is registering in the lower area. So that points to a faulty sender unit in the fuel tank. But to get that sorted I’ll have to empty the tank first. To be continued …

And finally looking at the cars fuel consumption it looks like the fuelling isn't to lean any more. Will look at that when a check the car in the coming few days!