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Making the First Cut


I hadn't quite internalized the fact that the Jaguar's hood opens from the rear, which would make it really hard to work on the front of the engine bay. So I went on the internet and found that it was pretty simple to pull the hood. You disconnect the gas struts, remove the front grille, then reach through the open grille and unbolt the four hood bolts. Be sure to mark the location of the hood on the hinges with a marker or an awl. Then you and your assistant (Linda) lift the hood off and prop it against the wall with suitable padding.

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That was easy. Next it was clear that the plastic piece behind the front air dam had to come off. That took a few bolts, and I had access to the underside of the radiator. That was enough for one day.

Some Serious Wrenching

I didn't have a service manual yet, but it was pretty clear that the radiator and A/C condensor had to come out. I removed the lower radiator hose and drained the radiator into a five gallon bucket. Then I removed the radiator header plate. I removed the bizarro soldered brass tubing apparatus on top of the radiator header plate. Before I could remove the header plate I had a policy decision to make. There were two fuel injection-looking connectors on top of the plate, each connected to what looked like an aluminum heatsink, but which had to be more complex. The heatsinks both said Marelli on them, and were cast, so I figure they were either injection- or ignition-related. There was no way to get the connectors free of the header plate because the wiring passed through a small hole in the plate -- the connectors must have been attached in place. On the spot I adopted a policy of destruction when required, and cut the wiring so I could remove the connectors, and then the header plate itself. Next was the rest of the radiator hoses, the transmission cooler lines, and then the radiator. The previous owner had said that the A/C was not working, so I removed the lines to the condensor, without a cloud of freon. I removed the condensor, and what I'm guessing is a muffler/dampener on the front of the condensor. That was enough work for one day. I cleaned up the car, mopped up the spilled coolant and ATF, and turned off the lights.

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References Required

I realized I needed some sort of service manual. I could probably gnaw away at the wiring, mounts, and various lines, until the engine was ready to come out, but it would be a lot easier with some directions. I looked on line, but couldn't find a Haynes or a Chilton's manual. I did find a couple copies of the factory service manual for about $400. Finally I found some CD versions of the manual on eBay. Normally I really dislike CD manuals, but they do have their uses. For one thing, you can print out pages you need for a procedure, and not worry about getting them dirty. The drawbacks are that you can't flip through the manual to quickly find what you want, and you can't use the computer without getting it dirty. Maybe I need a cheap old PC, and a waterproof membrane keyboard. Throughout this project I will be resisting the urge to get sidetracked with things like setting up a PC to read the CD manual. That's why I have no plans to upgrade the LT1. I think I could easily spend a lot of time and money doing a full or partial rebuild on the engine. But it is already running! I want the straightest path to get to a running Jaguar. I did take the time to prepare the garage, but I think that will pay off in a big way by giving me a comfortable place to work, which means I will be more likely to stick with the project. Anyway, I bought the CD manual off eBay, and will be awaiting its arrival. Until then I will have to find some simple things to do on the car.

Tonight I removed and/or loosened most of the clamps on the exhaust, just for something to do.

When I got home tonight the Jaguar service manual on CD was waiting for me in the mailbox. Now I can read it to find out how to remove the engine.

Expert Advice
This morning I talked with Andrew from Jaguar Specialties today, and he basically walked me through the entire engine removal process. It didn't have much in common with the version in the CD manual. I wrote it all down, and got started. The details are here if you are interested. I was able to remove the exhaust, the injection wiring harness, and the other wires and hoses. All I have left is the driveshaft, transmission mount, and engine mounts. Then find an engine lift, and pull the engine.

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I've been making more incremental progress. The engine wiring harness is completely removed from the engine. I've cut the fuel lines and power steering lines. And a lot of the heat shields and panels around the transmission and driveshaft are out. There's still more things to remove I have an engine hoist now. I tried to borrow one, and to find one on craigslist, but didn't have any success. Part of the reason I didn't want to buy one is that I'll have to store or dispose of it when this project is over. Of course, I might fall in love with engine swaps and use it regularly. Anyway, I bit the bullet and went into Harbor Freight, and found that the 2 ton folding lift I wanted was on sale from $219 marked down to $149. Add in the 20% coupon I had, and I was out the door with a 2 ton lift and 4 ton load leveller for $168. I've got the lift assembled, and it looks like it should do the job fine.

Things have been going pretty well. There have been some fasteners in awkward places, but nothing rusted or stripped, and no snapped bolts or studs. There is a coating of oil and other fluids that seems to have kept everything well lubricated. A few bolts have been surprisingly loose. The exhaust manifold stud nuts, and the driveshaft nuts were hand-tight.

The rest of the engine wiring is off. I finally just kept going after every connector and wire until there was nothing connected to the engine. I got the ground strap off the engine, and removed the starter power cable at the firewall. I removed the brace across the front of the engine compartment. I'm not sure it's absolutely necessary, but it will give a few more inches of clearance when removing the engine.

The engine is out!

I was out in the garage last night removing the transmission mount, which is by far the most complex I have ever seen. It has three plates and a big coil spring that seems to suspend the tail of the transmission. I got everything out except the last plate, which would not come loose. Andrew had told me that there were a couple ears on one of the plates, which extend up into the tunnel and are hard to see, but I couldn't spot them. After ten minutes of looking I finally found them, and got the plate out. After that I had the driveshaft off in another ten minutes. I removed the shifter and the speedometer pickup, and I was done!


A brief digression about tools. I have basic hand tools I have acquired over the years, mostly Craftsman and Husky, but more recently I have bought a few used Snap-On items off the internet. So far in this project I have not been stuck for lack of a tool. This whole car has come apart with:

  • Small Craftsman 1/4" ratchet set. A long extension and a medium extension were invaluable, as was a universal joint.
  • Small Husky 3/8" ratchet set. My aunt gave this to me years ago, and I have used it constantly. I also have a set of super-cheap deepwell sockets I bought when I was in school, that I have not yet been able to destroy. I have a simple Craftsman breaker bar, and a piece of gas pipe to go with it. And I recently bought a used Snap-On ratchet on eBay. I don't think it works any better than the Husky ratchet, but it is nice to know I'm using a Snap-On.
  • I have a basic 1/2" set that never fails on the big nuts.
  • I have a complete set of Husky combination wrenches that are nice, with a small box end that fits in most places, that was a gift from my dad.
  • He also gave me a set of GearWrenches, which are ratcheting combination wrenches. I use these when possible, bu the set is not as complete as the Husky set, so sometimes I have to use a non-ratcheting wrench. The only tools I have contemplated buying are more GearWrenches to fill in the gaps in the set.
  • I have an assortment of Craftsman screwdrivers, and a couple Snap-Ons that came from eBay.
  • I have a bunch of (mostly) crappy pliers. I primarily use a big pair of ChannelLock knockoffs, some wire cutters, and a pair of real ViseGrips.
That's about all of the tools that I have used on the car. I did have to dig up a PoziDrive #3 bit for a couple screws, and I used a hacksaw to cut some hoses, but those are the only exceptions. Anyway, the engine is out. It went pretty simply. I had the rear of the car raised, as Andrew suggested. The transmission pan was supported by a small jack after I had removed the cross brace. Then I hooked up the hoist and the load leveller. I had paid an extra $5 for the 4 ton leveller instead of the 2 ton, thinking that the larger one would work more smoothly. I think it did. I began jacking up the engine hoist, and checking for obstructions or hangups. I lowered the jack under the transmission, and used the leveller to raise the front of the engine and lower the rear. The four lifting ears on the engine made it really easy to hook up. I found one quote on the internet that said Don't know about a 96, but back in the 70s, they used to say that they put those engine lift tabs on them at the factory, so you could hook a chain on it and yank it to put a SB Chevy in there.