Why you can’t put a 948 oil pan on a 1275 engine and other Bugeye sorting tips.

We are far from perfect. We don’t have an unlimited budget on every project, and sometimes, clients elect to decline certain repairs we feel are needed. So we can’t fix everything on every single car. And sometimes this old stuff breaks, no matter who worked on it last.

This week though, we started working on a car that a client purchased online and sent here for sorting. There were a few interesting surprises on this one that we share so that others might not make the same mistakes.

First, downshifting into second was nasty when we got the car, it was nearly impossible to downshift without grinding. We removed the engine to change the gearbox to a new rebuilt unit and found that this was a rebuilt transmission that had been trashed because synthetic oil was used instead of the recommended 20/50 conventional oil. I believe that synthetic oil prevents the synchros from doing their job and thus the gears get trashed, quickly. So make sure you use the right oil.

In addition, the oil pan was leaking, as was the rear main seal. All these cars leak, but this one was outside the norm. We removed the pan and found massive amounts of RTV sealant, cleaned it up, put on new gaskets and a rear main seal kit as well. When we started it back up, we could hear something was terribly wrong. It sounded like the rods were scraping the pan. And when we removed the pan, sure enough, they were! You can see the four vertical scribes in the metal near the top lip of the pan. Turns out you CAN fit a 948 pan to a 1275 if you use enough goop.

We changed to a 1275 pan and fixed the problem. You should be able to see the four marks in the photo of the oil pan where the rods were hitting

Every month I get calls from people who say something like, “I wish I had bought my British car from you, I got one online, and it needed a lot of sorting and it’s still not right.” This blue car looked inexpensive online, but lots of repairs are still needed.

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