Today is only -2*C...its almost spring..so I decided to complete the job I started a few days back. I managed to get the rest of the bell housing seal installed and stepped back to appreciate the cleanest, almost virgin channel I have ever seen on a car. I had seen the hard as a burnt toast pieces that came out of this area but didn't realize that this seal was never changed in the 50 years of the cars life! I had received a similar shock last year when I decided to replace the rear shock absorbers and they turned out to be the original BOGE units. They were shot and the ride was a whole lot better after I installed the new Mexican units but I was amazed that the original units had lasted almost half a century and were doing reasonably alright even then.
Riding the wave I decided to replace the engine surround seal as well. It took me almost 30 minutes to do it as unlike the bell housing channel this one has been opened up and pressed back when the last engine seal was installed in Rawalpindi, the same time a new 1.6l engine was installed. I have the complete seals done now.
This is where the good part ends. I managed to get the transmission cradle un bolted and out and after cleaning it with solvent and realizing it was a little bent in the middle from maybe someone trying to lift the car with a jack at that point decided to straighten it with a few quick blows of a hammer. It straightened out alright but now the cradle is out of shape and the transmission won't settle in the cradle on top of the new mounts (foundations) I guess the curve was for a reason. I can go ahead and hammer a curve in there again but I have chosen the easy way out..ordered a new (used but in good condition) cradle mount online. it should be arriving by Monday and I promise to only clean it with some gunk cleaner if needed. Otherwise it is going straight in the car. After that the only thing left would be the engine re-installation.
I could have finished replacing the foundations today had it not been the cradle fiasco but I guess it is yet another lesson learnt...If it ain't broken ..DON'T FIX IT!
Pic. 1: The bell housing seal in place..note the clean unmolested channel, original L 380 Turkis paint.
Pic. 2: The engine surround seal in place
Pic. 3: The pieces of the old and original bell housing seal