Ellie the Brumby (1991)

Show off your car to other members. Tell us a bit about it. What mods you have got now or planned.
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moonbuggy
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Ellie the Brumby (1991)

Post by moonbuggy » Tue Dec 03, 2019 10:04 pm

Not the targa I've been on the hunt for, but I couldn't resist:

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For SA, she was a good price for a brumby with minimal rust, and red was my first brumby love so...

I am now the third owner. The first owner had her until 2016; she kept on top of the maintenance and only drove around town. The second owner lives out past Gawler and only drove her occasionally, and not at all for the last 6 months, so she's in need of some TLC but he did replace the radiator and shocks. She's got 234,621 ks on the clock.

The paint on the tailgate is not so hot but she makes up for it by being relatively straight. Let's see how long it takes me to add a few new dings.

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The rubber looks awfully original so I'm expecting a horror story once the windscreen comes out. Fingers crossed it won't require a date with a welder.

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The rust (I currently know about) is relatively small but is kicking off in quite a few places so I'll be progressively tackling that... and undoubtedly never stop.

There's quite the oozy doozy of a mess to be cleaned up before I can figure out the source/s of the oil leaks. Fortunately I like getting my hands dirty. 

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She'll live in my brother's garage until I can get the oil leaks sorted, the brake pads replaced, the windscreen out and whatever rusty terror lurks there slain, get the AC blowing cold air again, and treat her to fresh oils/filters/belts/spark plugs etc. In the meantime I have 'Pickle', my '02 Outback to keep me puttering about.

And then of course the 'wish list' begins: power steering, new wheels, new seats, that long sporty dash, more powerful headlights, maybe a roll bar... 

For the gamers among us, her name comes from the tiny but mighty Ellie of The Last of Us.

So yeah, she's not a targa but she's still pretty sweet. I think we're gonna have a blast.

Cheers
Sarah
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El_Freddo
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Re: Ellie the Brumby (1991)

Post by El_Freddo » Sat Dec 07, 2019 8:23 am

Hey Sarah,

Welcome to the forum! Now that you have your brumby, you know what the real issue is?

You will always end up with two!

Enjoy the journey with the rust hunt and the other little bits.

Cheers

Bennie
"The lounge room is not a workshop..."
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Re: Ellie the Brumby (1991)

Post by moonbuggy » Mon Dec 09, 2019 2:05 pm

You will always end up with two!
Ha! I still need that sky blue targa, so that's two. And I'd love an L Series wagon, a parts car... Fortunately I don't have the room/money or this could get out of hand very quickly!

The rust hunt was unfortunately fruitful...

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I knew there was something going on under the tray trim, but hoped it wouldn't be quite this bad. From what I can tell there isn't any rust on the bottom of the sides of the tray, so that's something. I'll have it dealt with it once the windscreen is out and I know what's lurking under there.

Once you start pulling things off it's hard to stop.

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I'll give the back of the cab a good clean, replace the foam pads and put up some sound deadener when I get the chance.

I tried to lift the vinyl floor covering to get a look under there too, but it's stuck down good an proper so I've left that for now as I understand if the tar coating is in good nick it's best to leave it alone, and I can't see anything under the car to suggest any rust in the floor pans.

(random but related, I was shocked at how light the brumby seats are)

The plastic guard under the passenger wheel arch was chocked with dirt and dead vegetation, so that was the next thing to come off.

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Despite there being A LOT of dirt packed in there (and a bit of moss) it looks like it hasn't started to rust. After the tray trim this was a relief. Haven't gotten to the driver's side yet, hopefully it's the same.

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And then the serious business of cleaning all that gunge under the car began. I still have a way to go but it's so much better than it was.

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So far I can see the rocker covers are definitely leaking. And I suspect there's a leak somewhere near the back of the engine, which Bennie suggests is the rear main seal. With that, and the clutch needing some serious attention, it looks like the engine will be coming out as soon as I can get my hands on the right equipment.

Time for a deep dive into the forum's threads on clutches and engines!

Cheers
Sarah
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Suby Spanner
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Re: Ellie the Brumby (1991)

Post by Suby Spanner » Fri Mar 06, 2020 8:40 pm

Looks pretty good. In my experience they don't rust easily in the wheel arch/fender/guard liner area. My first one was inches deep in mud/muck, but no rust luckily.

Wish my windscreen was as clean as yours: I'm going to get stuck in in the next few weeks before winter's here again.

My engine's leaking on the top between the two crank cases....

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Re: Ellie the Brumby (1991)

Post by moonbuggy » Sat May 02, 2020 5:40 pm

Looks pretty good. In my experience they don't rust easily in the wheel arch/fender/guard liner area. My first one was inches deep in mud/muck, but no rust luckily.
Every single wheel arch and guard area was like this and worse (one had moss growing in it) but it's exactly as you say: good as gold on the rust front.
Wish my windscreen was as clean as yours: I'm going to get stuck in in the next few weeks before winter's here again.
I still haven't pulled the windscreen yet to know the extent of any sneaky rust there, but I'm still pretty chuffed it's as good as it is. Hope you had a chance to get stuck into yours, the rain is here in a big way!
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Re: Ellie the Brumby (1991)

Post by moonbuggy » Sat May 02, 2020 7:18 pm

December feels a lifetime ago with everything that's already happened this year and there's still seven odd month's to go. (Feel free to chill out 2020)

But things have progressed in fits and starts.

The CV boots were next on the to-do list as the notorious driver's side was split and spitting. After learning the hard way that trying to replace an inner front boot while the driveshaft is still on the car is an exercise in pure misery, especially in 40+ heat, I backtracked and did it the right way. Thanks to those who went before and posted here, it wasn't too painful. I mean, the first driveshaft still took me so many hours, but the second one was (comparatively) a breeze.

It's a beautiful thing...

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... until you realise the inner boot isn't in quite the right spot and oozes grease. Silly mistake fortunately caught early. Bonus: the third time taking the driveshaft off and back on was even faster again. Seems like a handy skill to master with brumbies.

Before Christmas I splashed out on a rear disc brake conversion, so moved onto that next.

These guys (center piece/cone washer/nightmare/?) kill me:

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If I hadn't seen a youtube vid of Miles Fox bashing away to get his off I'm not sure I'd ever have managed to do it with gentler persuasion. That said, two needed to be strong-armed, the other two flew off... :shock:

Biff! Bang! Pow! No more drums.

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Thanks again to posts here it was a very straight forward job.

Not so straightforward was getting the air out of the brake lines. After spending what felt like hours and still getting bubbles I thought I had damaged a seal in the master cylinder. With no MC rebuild kits to be had, I thought I'd bench bleed the MC before figuring out a plan B. Fortunately that eventually worked and the rest followed suit soon after. Phew! I was obviously a bit too hasty with the MC first time around. Anyhoo, I took Ellie for a test drive and the brakes worked great and are definitely better than before. Job done.

Getting some sun after the brake test drive.

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(She's a bit woofy, hence all the air fresheners)

The original plan was to replace the leaky engine gaskets and get Ellie on the road... but then I got ambitious and bought a power steering and 5 speed conversions. So in the shed Ellie stays.

The engine and gearbox are now out. The oil pump came off without too much difficulty so it and a few other things will be getting new o-rings, seals and gaskets this week. I still need to get the flywheel machined, and haven't settled definitely on which way to go with the tailshaft (probably go with the two-piece since I have it, but still tempted by a one-piece), and need to start thinking about the pedal box and crossmember. The engine bay needs a really good clean and there's some surface rust there to be dealt with before the engine goes back in. The jack plate for the power steering rack also need to be drilled out. There isn't a piece of rubber on Ellie that isn't shot so I'm also aiming to replace as many bushes as I can get to right now. I had started toying with a custom centre console but that's now on the backburner with so much other stuff to do.

With all that and more there's no danger of being bored during these strange days.

Cheers
Sarah
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Re: Ellie the Brumby (1991)

Post by El_Freddo » Sun May 03, 2020 9:42 am

Looking good Sarah!

There’s so much work that can go into any vehicle and they still look the same to anyone else! But at the end of the day, the satisfaction experience is one of the reasons why we do this!

I love how quickly your plans grew as you started at noon level and quickly advanced!

Keep up the good work!!

Cheers

Bennie
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Re: Ellie the Brumby (1991)

Post by Suby Spanner » Sun May 17, 2020 12:22 am

You've done well!

I didn't get to mine at all... Nearly got another project crossed off, and I've also moved and been elbow deep in gardening and repairs there....

I too grabbed a 5 speed kit from u-pull-it.

Keep us posted, you're is going great guns! Be proud!

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Re: Ellie the Brumby (1991)

Post by moonbuggy » Tue May 19, 2020 2:19 am

There’s so much work that can go into any vehicle and they still look the same to anyone else! But at the end of the day, the satisfaction experience is one of the reasons why we do this!

Ha, yep, I'm already braced for a whole lot of 'so you took all that time to do what exactly?' said with an air of confusion, mild judgment and growing disinterest.
I love how quickly your plans grew as you started at noon level and quickly advanced!
Keep up the good work!!

Thank you, and thank you Bennie for all the encouragement and advice. Without yourself and all the great posts here the plans would have stayed very conservative. Which would be a shame as it's been so much fun... the odd dummy spit and tool thrown, but mostly fun.
You've done well!

I didn't get to mine at all... Nearly got another project crossed off, and I've also moved and been elbow deep in gardening and repairs there....

I too grabbed a 5 speed kit from u-pull-it.

Keep us posted, you're is going great guns! Be proud!
Aw, thank you. You're too kind! :D And I am indeed pretty chuffed. For sure feels good to do the work yourself.

Sounds like you've had a lot on your plate, Suby. I see you were going to strip the 5 speed but maybe haven't had the chance yet with everything else going on. Good luck when you have the time to get to it. That's definitely one job I'm not game to attempt at this stage, but I might attack the old 4 speed just for the experience once I've got Ellie rolling with the 5.

--

Work on the conversions has slowed down quite a bit for various reasons, but I'm still foofing about the edges - messing with the pedal box here, trying to find PS pump o-rings there. I'm hoping to seriously ramp things back up next week, which not so coincidentally should be when I can afford to get the flywheel machined. Replacing gaskets, hoses, bushes and other parts sure does add up but given many of these would be OG it's definitely worth it.

cheers
Sarah
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Re: Ellie the Brumby (1991)

Post by TOONGA » Wed May 20, 2020 8:36 am

Looking really good!!! I noticed though that the cone in that rear disc was sitting out. I hope you did all of your castellated nuts up on the CV shafts to "I stood on the 4 foot long breaker bar after I did the nut up as tight as I possible could" otherwise you risk failure of all of your wheel bearings.

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Re: Ellie the Brumby (1991)

Post by moonbuggy » Wed May 27, 2020 5:35 pm

Looking really good!!! I noticed though that the cone in that rear disc was sitting out. I hope you did all of your castellated nuts up on the CV shafts to "I stood on the 4 foot long breaker bar after I did the nut up as tight as I possible could" otherwise you risk failure of all of your wheel bearings.
Hey Toonga!

Thank you kindly. And, I only have a 1/2 breaker as that was the biggest I could find at the time, but do use a 1.5mish length of pipe to get extra leverage. I bounced, stomped and hung off that sucker until I couldn't get it to move any further and then kept going for a while to be sure. I think the pic which looks suspect is from before everything got tightened up properly. But I'd rather be safe than sorry, so will have another go at the nuts before Ellie hits the road to make sure they're as tight as can be. I also read somewhere recently it's good to tighten to 1/3(ish) torque, loosen, tighten to close to the required torque, loosen, then bring it on home. Not sure if that's overkill or not but I might give it a try it if I take the brakes off again, which at the rate my plans are expanding is more likely than not.

Cheers
Sarah
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Re: Ellie the Brumby (1991)

Post by Suby Spanner » Sun Jun 14, 2020 11:38 am

I've got a small one hand operated grease pump, it's a king chrome one - brand doesn't matter (about $20) and it's a good idea to run a line of grease down important threads to lubricate them, it makes a hell of a difference upon the actual 'torque' applied: I try and grease every customers wheel lug threads for example, and definately on the CV nut threads etc.

For critical bolts like head bolts, timing chain/belt guides, they have to be lubricated, as that's how the factory set the torque figures.

Another good trick, is if you're playing in mud and water alot, use copper coat/never sieze compound instead: Yeah it's messy stuff that will make it's way from the component to your tools, to your clothes to the house door! but it's magic for when you go to undo it next time. Genuinely can turn a hated job or repair to a "god, that went easy" job.

I use oodles of thread locker on stuff that's unlikely to need to be removed in the near future: so all gear box internals, diff internals, engine internals, especially inside timing covers, so water pumps, guides etc all get the loctitie treatment. If a bolt can fall out into other moving components, I lock it down. Don't use the ultra strong, medium or weaker is fine for automotive: Those ultra strong thread lockers and bearing retainers are simply unbelievable at how good they are: you will end up snapping bolts, distorting axles etc try to dismantle next time without heating and destroying the compound. Leave the ultra strong compounds for the 400 tonne dump trucks!

Keep us posted, loving where yours is going.

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