So ... after about 13 years, my sand seal began leaking oil. How could I tell? By the straight line of oil sprayed across the inside of my decklid by the crank pulley. ):
I decided to take advantage of the opportunity and do a few things I've been wanting to do while the motor was out. They were: downgrade from dual carbs to a single progressive center mount and all the things that go with that setup (like heat risers, new distributor, etc.), get a new muffler/exhaust system that is more quiet and fits my car better, and do a complete rear wheel brake job. Yes, there's some time and expense there, but she's worth it. :)
REAR BRAKES: I didn't take many pictures of the brake job cuz it just isn't very interesting. But ... I did find an "easy" way to remove the 240 ft lb nut on the rear axles. I found the video below on Youtube. I followed this guy's technique and had no trouble removing them. I used a 3/4 inch heavy duty long handled ratchet with a 1/2 inch 36mm socket coupled with 3/4 to 1/2 inch socket adapter. I was afraid the adapter was going to split but it didn't (by the way, good luck finding a 3/4 inch 36mm socket at your local hardware store! Most stores don't carry ANY 3/4 inch socket stuff). I also used a 4ft long steel tube breaker bar. *Don't forget to MARK a LINE from the axle nut to the drum so you know where to return the nut (i.e. how tight to get it again) when putting it back together. This is important. I used an electric etcher for mine.
The Weber 32/36 Progressive Project: To start, here are a few pictures before I disassembled the top end and removed the engine ...
Above, from left to right. 1. The sand seal inside its metal ring. (these types are called "bolt-in." 2. The small brass washer should be used behind your ALTERNATOR pulley - to offset it out the same distance as the crank pulley. 3. This is the spacer washer that fits over the crankshaft. This gets installed first, then the seal and ring, then the pulley.
Here's my necessary modification of the air cleaner ... I was told it would fit underneath the deck lid just fine, but it did not. Perhaps the later models have more clearance?
The Weber Progressive 32/36 DFEV
Single Mount Carburetor & and other stuff
I bought all this stuff online from Aircooled.net. There's a lot to know about the workings of any carburetor, but here's a link to their how-to article regarding this one - click here. I will say that the customer service at Aircooled.net is excellent. Unfortunately, it was excellent right up until the point when I really needed their help. Besides the air cleaner not clearing the deck lid as promised, I could NOT get this carb to idle. It would either sputter and die or race over 2000rpm. They just stopped returning my email inquiries completely - very frustrating. The positives are; the car runs cooler and has a nice power band acceleration. The negatives are; it still won't idle. And, I feel like I've tried everything to remedy it. I'm no certified mechanic, but I'm not a jerk either. I've been tinkering with VWs for 30 years, and I cannot figure out this puzzle. Period. I have to "heel-toe" it to keep it from dying at stop lights. Unacceptable! I'm afraid I'm just going to have to replace this carburetor ... but, I'll think about it a while longer before I do.
After reminding myself that life is too short to f*** with something for this long, I purchased a different carburetor and manifold - it's a simple PICT 34. Click the BIG button below to check it out.
Check out this extra engine tin that helps mitigate the loss of the heater boxes. When the heater boxes are removed, it leaves the push rod tubes exposed and vulnerable to flying road debris. They also say these will help with cooling, although I'm not sure if I believe that.
You'll need a gear puller to remove the pulley. After that, removing the seal is easy. There are several different sized seals - and they are all very similar. Is your case CUT or not? Mine was not. So, the seal fits inside a metal ring which fits snugly inside the case.
People do different things when installing these, and you really don't hear much about it. Unfortunately, you CAN do this incorrectly. And, this is a job you do NOT want to have to do over. For better or worse, here's what I did ... I used a THIN smear of high heat red permatex on the outside of the seal, then pushed it inside its metal ring and wiped off any excess that squeezed out. Then (after making sure the case was free of grease and grime) I tapped the metal ring into the case until the back of the ring was flush.
Back to the carbuetor install ...
Here's my take on the Weber 32/36 Progressive ....
And, the main reason I started this whole project was to replace the sand seal. Here's some info ...
The picture below shows my Frankenstein puller tool I made to get the drums off. I don't know about your car, but my drums hadn't been removed in a while and they were NOT going to come off by simply pulling with my hands. I turned this gear puller into a DRUM puller by fashioning some steel bars to extend its reach - worked well. :)
Above are some random pics of the project. *Note: Picture number 3. Does it look to you like the deck lid will clear the air cleaner and close completely? Yah, me neither.
Below are some notated pictures of the carburetor itself. I could not find pictures like these online, so I made them myself. I hope these help somebody out there in VW land.
Below is something else I've been meaning to do for a while - a quick connect/disconnect for the battery. I found this one at Auto Zone. Works well.
The Vintage Speed exhaust system: stock-like looking and fitting ... but a huge upgrade in performance and flow. I took a gamble on this and bought it based on reviews. But, I'm glad I did! It fits sooooo much better than my old merged header system. It's quieter and nicer looking, too! Very happy with this exhaust and would recommend it to others.
Then, I used a small bead of jb weld on the exterior of the ring where it meets the case, and let everything sit for 2 days. Backing up a bit ... there are different types of pulleys out there. My new one (below) came with a spacer washer that fits OVER the crankshaft (and key) to position the pulley JUST far enough away from the seal that it doesn't make contact when completely installed. **Folks, unless there is a necessity to do so, don't worry about replacing the crankshaft (half-moon) key. (Those things can sometimes be a REAL bitch to remove if the engine is still in the car.)
The picture above (with the funnel) is my brake bleeding contraption - another idea I found on Youtube. This allows a single person to bleed the brakes without buying a brake bleeder gun. It was messy but it worked. *Note: in case you don't already know this ... brake fluid is a pretty good paint remover! I learned this the hard way about 30 years ago. Keep your brake fluid away from your shiny paint job! And/Or ... wash it off immediately!
I bought that shallow puller tool (pictured above & right) from JBugs.com. If you remove the rear engine tin piece, you can do this job without removing the engine!
Having said that, it's still not easy. And, one of the hardest parts is installing the new pulley. It fits so snugly over the crankshaft, it's a real bitch to install far enough to thread the bolt.