So, reader chums, what’s happened since my last post? Well…
I dropped the car in for its MOT a comfortable 10 days before it was due, & casually mentioned the spray on the screen. Next thing I know the garage are calling to tell me the coolant system just blew steam all over the garage & they are going to need to replace the header tank (just a standard Ford part @ ~£80 so OK). Then a second call to say that ‘something’ is compressing the coolant system, with the pipes rock hard & that probably explains the mist on the screen with some coolant escaping from one of the pipes around the jubilee clips. Next call is fluid is dropping but not coming out anywhere so… going into the engine somehow? Ho hum. Then we move on to compression testing the engine; the left bank is lower than the right one with one of the cylinders only making 20psi. “We’ll have to take the head off”. Joy. Plus the car is trailered off to another garage ‘cos it’s getting in the way! At this point we’re two weeks down the line, the car has no MOT & I’m starting to get a bit f*****d off with everything, especially as I ‘heavily invested’ (think 60+ hours of labour!) in getting everything sorted before the Le Mans Classic at the start of the year. Now, this might read like a bit of good old fashioned whinging… And you’d be right!
Lo & behold I am back at the ‘how much do I keep spending on this engine’ question (again). The current answer is ‘Not any more’ and thoughts turn once more to an engine swap to an GM LS3. I definitely can’t afford the high £20Ks that TopCats want, so I have had a chat with Jay who bowled up at LMC with a lovely LS3 in his Mantis Challenge converted road car. He’s happy to have another go at an LS3 engine swap & is pricing it up. Gulp!
So in the next couple of weeks I may have to decide if I can ‘afford’ (& I am using that work in its most flexible definition I assure you) to keep the Mantis or not. Blimey.