1974 A Series Opel Manta Blog

The Opel Project blog has been setup to record the rebuild of my 1974 A Series Opel Manta.
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1974 A Series Opel Manta Blog
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1974 A Series Opel MantaFeatured

My 1974 A Series Opel Manta. Its been a long project and it still has a way to go before it looks like it use to back in the day. Now running a 2.0l+ CIH engine on full Webber Alpha engine management. Everything is custom made or adapted, from the full 2.5″ stainless steel exhaust, Wilwood racing calipers, Cosworth rear calipers, Hydraulic clutch, Chevey S10 clutch kit and lots more.. Read on for full details of the rebuild and hopefull one day pictures of her out on the road!

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Opel Manta A Series steering rack conversion.
Steering

The final piece of the puzzle, Steering – Part 1 The Rack

One big problem on the Opel Manta is the steering. As standard its fine, but start modifying the engine and adding a bigger exhaust and it gets a bit tricky. Left hand drive cars are nice and easy as they don’t have to contend with the steering and manifold all on the one side! or brake servo’s getting in the way of things. But i suppose as it was originally built as a left hand drive it wasn’t something they needed to worry about 🙁 The problem has always been getting a nice tubular manifold down past the steering shaft,…

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Clutch

Clutch Pedal Finally Installed

I have finally managed to get round to installing the reverse mount clutch pedal and master cylinder for the hydraulic clutch. I have also reinforced the bulk head, as when i installed the Wilwood brake pedal there was a bit of movement as these bolt up on the vertical part of the bulk head which although its doubled skinned it not that solid. So i now have some nice solid 5 mm plate that was laser cut to the exact shape that i wanted and i have stuck these on the vertical face and the top where the original pedal…

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Tilton triple reservoir fitted to Opel Manta A Series
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Tilton triple brake reservoir

I finally managed to get the Tilton reservoir fitted and connected up to the two brake master cylinders. Now I just need to drill a hole in the firewall  to feed the pipe through to connect up to the clutch master cylinder. But first I need to fit the Tilton reverse mount clutch pedal so I get the hole in the right place.

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Opel Manta A Series steering rack rebuild
Steering

Steering rack reconditioning.

I think i must have taken just about every part of the Manta apart at some point, except the steering rack! So as the workshop manual has a nice section on the steering rack and an exploded view and i had a spare rack i thought i would have a go at taking mine apart! It was just as well that i did as when i stripped it all down a could see that the internal guide bushes were badly worn. So i pulled these out, cleaned and check the rest of the rack, which all looked good. So then…

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Period radio or New?

That was a question i kept asking myself. But as the car was way off being finished i never look into it too much. But as we are getting closer i thought it best to do some looking into it. The fits and looks just right as it the twin spindle one which fits the original hole, but its always been rubbish, even when new!! Its only the radio that has been any good. So i looked into trying to get it adapted for an audio input, but no luck. I looked at new “Old style” but they just don’t…

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Chevy S10 clutch fitted to Opel Manta A Series
CIH Engine, Clutch

Fitting the Mighty S10 clutch

I had always wanted to fit a bigger clutch, just to be on the safe side. So when i had the chance to get an S10 clutch from Opel GT Source in the US, i took the chance a bought one (I was lucky enough to have someone bring it over from the US as the postage would have been more than the clutch!) and thought one day i will fit it to the car. But as i had to have the engine out to sort out the piston i thought now was the perfect time. Using the Monza flywheel…

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Opel CIH oil pan dipstick alternative option using Ford 7.3 V8 pan adaptor
CIH Engine

Dipstick alternative option

Not wanting to have to drill the block to locate the dipstick hole where it should be for the manta in the block, i did a bit of searching and found the the US Ford 73L V8 Diesel has an oil pan dipstick!! So after a bit of measuring and checking i reckoned that this would be just what i needed. So i ordered one on ebay and when it arrived measured it and bought a metal hole punch to cut a nice clean hole and as i has a spare oil pan i thought i would give it a…

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CIH Engine

Engine Rebuild

So the crank is back after a regrind and is 0.25mm under size. The new bearings and piston have arrived and the bottom end is all back together. Now its time to fit the timing chain cover and other bits.  

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ring compressor sleeves from Wiseco
CIH Engine

Fitting Pistons

Last time i built the engine up i used one of those pesky band type piston ring clamps and it wasn’t the greatest thing for fitting them. So this time i did a bit of reading and came across these ring compressor sleeves from Wiseco. They start off wider and taper to the same size as the piston bore. So i bought one to try it out and they are Amazing. No hitting the piston top with a hammer end or something like this. These you can just push in with your fingers as unlike the band type that you…

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CIH Engine

Time to get the engine back together!

So the crank is back after being ground by .25mm. New bearings and piston have arrived + plus a few other bits 🙂 Now time to test out the new piston ring compressor sleeve! Im going to try the old damaged piston first to see how it works, it looked nice and easy on youTube!

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1974 A Series Opel Manta