• Hello Guest, welcome to the initial stages of our new platform!
    You can find some additional information about where we are in the process of migrating the board and setting up our new software here

    Thank you for being a part of our community!

dirty, old and rusty: a tale of a $600 meatball

Needed to take care of the crank housing paper gasket leak that has been bugging me for more than a year. Look at that grit build up :oops:

Removed and cleaned up

cleanest part of the car by far

glamor shot

I also replaced both the cam seals and the valve cover gasket. Hopefully all of the leaks are taken care of for now:-D
Last edited:
Nothing is more satisfying than fixing leaks and replacing gaskets.

unfortunately it is still leaking from somewhere. Albeit much slowly than it was before. Maybe one half drop hangs off the bottom bellhousing bolt after every drive. It isn't enough to make it to the pavement though, at least. It might be a RMS but I replaced that with a volvo seal when I did the clutch/flywheel job 18 or 20 months ago.
The past few days I have been noticing a rare-but-getting-more-common hiccup that the engine would do when hot and driving around. I didn't notice, but the dash lights were flickering dimly when it hiccupped. I ignored it like usual so it came back to bite me last night. At 1am, the dash lit up like what happens when the alt/regulator fails. I ended up making it home though, on battery power which dipped below 11.5v. I went to bed and delt with it this morning.

At first, I noticed the ground strap from alternator case to the block was not tightened down, at all. It was my fault, I must have forgotten to tighten the bolt when I did the front crank housing seals. I thought that was it so I started driving to work. 13.7v was at the cigarette lighter socket. Half way to work, it dropped back down to 11.7v so I turned around. Revving the engine did not help and all the dash lights lit up again. I pulled the regulator and saw this:

I had installed this regulator as a "good used" one from my spare alternator ~2 months or so ago and it had decent length on the brushes so the commutator on the alt must be sloppy and eating the brushes.

Could the loose ground have any effect on this? Could that cause the brushes to get chewed out so fast?

A bought the dave adjustable regulator a bit back to install but never got around to it. It went in now.

13.75v and it got me to work with no voltage drops. fug.
Last edited:
I have seen and thought about that gasket. What worries me is the difference in distance from the VR sensor in the diff to the internal tone ring with a thicker gasket like that installed. When I first pulled the cover to do the locker, it was a rtv chemical gasket only, no paper.

I ordered a paper gasket a couple weeks ago and am going to try that out first. I was also thinking about getting a large piece of sandpaper and a flat surface to re-finish the sealing surface of the cover.

I got a stock panhard par and put new poly bushings into it, so I will be pulling the cover again while the bar goes in in the coming weeks.

It won't effect the VR sensor.

Milling the mating surfaces is a great idea, too. I do that every time.
this alternator thing is not over. I didn't notice because it was daytime, but all the lights were flickering heavily. worse than i've ever seen before. AC leakage is ~800mv which sounds bad. So I swapped that 55amp alternator in, along with the external regulator/brush thing.
Besides the alt being underpowered for the car, it worked fine. I noticed a heli coil in it that looked shoddily installed, and it came from a "driving" car so it was probably good right?

Went on a weekend trip to a friends house and half way there the alternator stopped charging. The helicoil on the alt fell out and the brushes were no longer brushing the brushee. Found a self-tapper that fit and drove that sucker in and fixed it. :oops:

I found a 100 amp denso in a junkyard so that's going to go in next after i refresh the brushes.

It won't effect the VR sensor.

Milling the mating surfaces is a great idea, too. I do that every time.

The diff cover ended up having pinholes in it :lol: got a good used aluminum cover that will be installed next time it leaks. (rtv'd the holes :oogle:)
Last edited:
On the alternator front, I ordered these to refresh the denso.

I found a 1995 940 in a junkyard so I took the engine.

It's got what counts

I needed to do a fuel filter as I had no idea how old the one on my car is. I've never changed it and I have driven the car almost 100k miles. Last time I attemped, I snapped the nylon line, which was then patched with some clamps and 5/16" j30r9 line. The tank also had a habit of leaking occassionally when full. I assumed it was the filler neck seal. Here is the dropped tank

Some pretty cancerous rust. There was a bunch of road build up all over the top.

I believe this was the hole that was causing the leaking. There were multiple other holes. Flipping the tank upside down, it pee'd out of a couple spots.

JB welded the worse of the holes. But I ended up ordering a new aftermarket tank. Hope it's not too terrible quality.
Last edited:
Got the tank in. It was the $168 one from rock auto, spectra premium brand. It does have a circular baffle around the pickup, like the OE tank. It feels about as solid as the tank that came out, though it weighs a bit less due to no undercoating. It is pained with some sort of paint, we will see how it holds up to Massachusetts salt marsh climate.

When trying to reinstall the old tank with the filler neck in the car, I found that the seal/clamp assembly was pretty close to impossible to get the screw to start threading into the clamp. I ended up just pulling the filler neck tube off the car. Then, installing it on the new tank off the car, it still took 25 minutes of fiddling to get the clamp to secure the seal and filler neck to the tank. I left it loose enough where I could spin it to finagle the tank and neck up into the car with the floor jack on some wood. Then it was just bolting the tank up, tightening the neck clamp, and installing the seal/guard thing in the filler hatch.

While doing this, I also converted to a single in-tank dw200 pump. I put two gallons of gas in and jumped the relay and let it run for a couple minutes to run the gas through the new pump, filter, and line. It is much quieter than the stock pump paired with the ipd upgrade in-tank pump. Still can just barely hear it prime though.

I also recieved my denso alternator refresh parts. The alternator will be installed this weekend.

Last edited:
Rebuilt alt going in

Added a 2 gauge ground. I ended up moving it to one of the motor mount bolts as I was concerned about the wire getting too hot by the studless exhaust port.

I fired it up, but the car didn't charge. I assumed it was the new brushes needing to be worn in so I just let it run. I soon noticed an odd smell and realized the alternator was getting rediculously hot. Shut the car off and pulled the alt back out. I pulled all the newly installed parts back off, tested each diode and they all checked out. I put it back together, freshly sanding each electrical connection point to fresh metal. When I was installing it back, the terminal crimp thing for the B+ terminal just fell off the cable into my hand. Whoops. That loose connection was probably the problem all along :roll:

Slapped it back together, running a new B+ wire straight to the battery with 4 gauge, and it charges perfectly and stays cool.

Only 0.03~0.04 vac ripple

I pulled the old B+ cable through the harness and removed the other side from the starter. The other end was not in much better shape.

Super low tide sunset for your pleasure:cool:
Last edited:
I forgot to update this thread so here is the gist over the last 2.5 months

There is/was a break in the harness that I'd occasionally have to jiggle to get the car to run that bugged me enough to try to figure out why. It turned out to be the rpm signal from ezk to lh boxes was intermittent and was causing the lh box to not want to hold the fuel relay on. I've recieved another harness from Cwazywazy the other day and that will be going in.

I moved the wasted spark loot from the strut tower to the firewall. I want to switch to coil rear plug so this will be revised again soon.

The power steering pump has been making annoying noises so i got another from the junkyard and rebuilt it. I have yet to install this one.

The distributor wasn't doing anything and I wanted an additional crank case breather location so I pulled it. It was stuck in there good and did not want to come out. I ended up removing the intake piping and airbox and got a hammer under the lip to pop it out.

I installed a mann pro vent 100 in that new additional breather spot. It works really well. I temporarily plugged the other breather spot to see how well just the pro vent works without the stock breather box doing anything. It works crazy well.

I installed a mini battery. Odyssey PC680. It works well, cranks the car over fine every morning in 10F degree weather. Haven't had to test reserve capacity yet though!

The panhard bar mount to the axle had a failure, the stud itself snapped off the axle! I was able to limp it to work and had my friend come by after hours and weld on a new stud. Not sure how the original one failed, there was not significant corrosion in the area or anything, plus that stud should see no side loading.

Cleaning the wideband sensor. My controller died and I left the sensor in the exhaust stream unpowered for months. It seemed slower to respond than before and maybe this helped? not sure. Cleaned it off physically though

Bought some e codes, have yet to install.

My shifter is just a 14mm rod so i spruced it up with some mcmaster collars and bushings lol

Permanently installed an antenna mount in the roof. Feeding the coax through the headliner without removing it was terrible, but the install is so clean now.

Got some ipd strut brace goodies. I wanted the kaplhenke full strut brace but after waiting for 1.5 years now I gave up. I'll still buy one though if they're made again :lol:
Last edited:
The panhard rod failed while driving? Scary, and weird. Maybe it had been overtorqued and compromised at some point?

yeah, suddenly the back end just went wobbly as I goosed it from a stop sign into a turn. Either it was over-torqued and compromised as you mentioned or possibly the nut itself loosened and the panhard bar migrated to the threaded part and the hard turn snapped the rest of it off. not sure. I've since re-torqued all the rest of the suspension component fasteners just in case, haha!
no wonder my parking brake didn't work

Installed the e codes finally. I should have gotten before pix. the difference is unreal. I can actually see ahead!

I saved some of the catch can stuff in a jar to see exactly what it was. I still don't know. This is about 500 miles worth of highway driving.

I got a cheap compression tester. I think it reads high but the small range between cylinders seems great.

I plowed though a massive puddle and water went into the maf which dumped fuel and fouled the plugs. It would misfire a ton on cold start. New plugs fixed it. Here are the old ones:

wasnt me
Evidence of donuts?


regapped the plugs from 0.030 to 0.045 for experimentation reasons. First impressions, i think the car lopes less when started cold and maybe very low loads are smoother? probably placebo. I want to see if running it a little lean for cruising is helped. Plugs definitely looked a little lean but that is expected, ~750 miles on them. Bosch W7DSR silver. 1234:

regapped the plugs from 0.030 to 0.045 for experimentation reasons. First impressions, i think the car lopes less when started cold and maybe very low loads are smoother? probably placebo. I want to see if running it a little lean for cruising is helped. Plugs definitely looked a little lean but that is expected, ~750 miles on them. Bosch W7DSR silver. 1234:

We urgently await the results.