Yeah I'll get into low tech engines in a sec and you can re-assess which are better...
Got the Focus back from Ford, apparently the software locked into limp home mode, so they upgraded it to the brand new Zetec settings released this month and its running extremely well now. One day off the road wasn't bad, happy there.
I drove the RS2000 to work - it still had a miss in it, wasn't charging the battery properly, and was over heating. So when I got to work, there wasn't much on so I decided to spend the day on the car. Move over Hornet, I drove it into one of our hangars and got to work.
Discovered it was actually an RS1500 3 cylinder, so I replaced all the leads, plugs, distributer cap, and points. This cured the miss, and made it a world more driveable down low. Running on all four cylinders, it was smooth as and a huge difference, as you'd expect. One problem down, a few to go.
Was looking for the timing marks on the crankshaft pulley when a friend pushed on the alternator belt and the whole alternator moved! Danger, danger, danger! A quick inspection revealed the alternator tensioner bracket had cracked and the bolt was MIA. This explained why both the alternator was not charging and the engine was over-heating - neither the alternator was spinning, the water pump not going, and the fan half heartedly spinning around. Crikey!
The arrow is pointing to where the bracket was sheared, you can see the new bolt, washer, and strengthening piece forming a stronger bracket than was on there previously. Also you can see the water pump on the lower right hand side of the pic needs replacing due to deterioration for reliability's sake. And oil on the rocker cover - eewww!
So we took the bracket out and tried some bolts to find the right thread and size, found the appropriate hardware, then went to work on the bracket. The bracket had sheared at the hole down near the engine, so we ground off the half-a-hole, welded on an extension, then another strengthener in front of it. Re-manufactured the hole, then cleaned the whole lot up, machined back to a smooth surface. Hit it with some paint to stop the rust, and in she went with the new bolt and a locking washer, to hopefully stop the same thing happening again. Was handy having pretty much any tool I needed at my disposal, plus mulitple persons also similarly time-equipped to help out.
So.... what were we saying about low tech engines again?
Still, it was good fun, picked up the Focus after work, its going well also. So both cars are now serviceable, the Escort still has a list of things to go (like new gasket set and a pre-emptive new water pump) but its running 100% reliable and smoothly now.