Hello all - got my E-type back from the shop Friday and took her for a couple jaunts yesterday. It was wonderful to have her on the road again and the New Hampshire back roads with their corkscrews and ups and downs did not disappoint. During the second ride with my ladywife along, we noticed a funny “hot” smell. Not incinerating wires, but faint and slightly concerning - thought it was the clutch after a hillside start at a stop sign, but it came and went with the windows open. As we got back into our town, a ticking noise started, like a small fan blade on metal but fainter - rose and fell with revs. I pulled her in the garage and opened the bonnet. no apparent rotating things hitting non-rotating things - water pump seemed tight - dynamo seemed alright - and the belt was very tight. Started it again and tried to track the noise - seemed to come from the front of the engine (water pump/dynamo territory) but I couldn’t rule out the front of the engine itself and thoughts of chain tensioner disintegrating set my to worrying hard. We replaced the harmonic balancer (this was a “needs a lift” shop visit), that had disintigrating rubber (SNG), and the fan belt (XKS that I carried as a spare) The old belt was not as tight, and the new one was very tight. My son and I tried to take the belt off last night and stopped to reconnoiter again this morning - the thought was to start the car without the belt and see if the noise still existed (eliminating the water pump and dynamo). We set to thinking about it and I know I overtightened some fan belts in my youth, costing me a couple alternators before I wised up - but there was never any smell, just a lack of charge and rumbling of the shot bushings. We have reasoned that the water pump is tight, and the smell may have been phenolic resins used in the windings of the dynamo - but I’m not sure they have such material in the windings or elsewhere on the dynamo. I didn’t lay hands on the dyno, but she was pretty warm as was the entire engine.
Has anyone gone through a cam chain tensioner failures and would the engine have cratered by now if that had happened (god forbid)? Also - could the change in harmonic dampener have increased the length double-vee belt needed - have there been issues with short belts from suppliers? and how does one dial in more play in the belt (only moved up and down 1/8")? Sorry for all the details, I’ve left out the good parts of the drives and zooming around the twists and turns… all the best, Pete