1965 Hillman Imp with Honda Goldwing flat six. First drive!!!

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yoeddynz
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1965 Hillman Imp with Honda Goldwing flat six. First drive!!!

Post by yoeddynz »

Hiya,
I've joined up here to hopefully gain more information, ideas and a smidge of mojo for my hillman Imp project. The project will probably give you all a little giggle and will hopefully be of interest to those who like a bit of machining and tinkering.

Here's a pic worth a thousand words to what my project consists of...

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The car is a 1965 Hillman Imp that I rescued from a field where it was sitting, rusting away. After restoring it back onto the road and along the way fitting a datsun 1200 engine out back I found myself yearning to make something more of it. Early on in the restoration I had been having thoughts about the beautiful little 1500 cc flat six found in the Honda Goldwing bikes. This idea never left me and after after a mate had suggested a way around the main stumbling block, which was the fact the Honda engine has backwards rotation, I ended up buying a Goldwing engine and a Subaru Leone gearbox to adapt it to.

The engine arrived on a pallet 1 day before New Zealand went into full lockdown. A perfect way to spend enforced workshop stay at home :-)

I have written a full blog/thread on the car restoration from the very beginning until it was on the road and I have continued that thread as the Goldwing engine project took over. For those of you interested you can read that thread on the main forum I frequent, oldschool.co.nz. Here's a link to the very beginning ....

https://oldschool.co.nz/index.php?/topi ... -8-months/

Back into the Baby 911 build now so if its of interest here I'll post up my updates as I go. I'm super excited about this build. The little Imp is already so fun to drive, even just with its little 60bhp Datsun engine. I can't wait till I have a sonorous, torquey, smooth and free revving flat six out back. There is no way I can afford a real 911 but I can build stuff so I'll do my best to make my own take on a classic 911 :-)

Here's some other more recent pics..

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Alex
Last edited by yoeddynz on Sat Jun 22, 2024 9:45 am, edited 1 time in total.
sladey
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Re: 1965 Hillman Imp soon with flat six from a Honda

Post by sladey »

Cool project.

Hard to believe and engine that size is from a bike.

Looking forward to updates
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Re: 1965 Hillman Imp soon with flat six from a Honda

Post by yoda »

Very cool project, look forward to seeing your updates
The force is strong in this one ......
yoeddynz
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Re: 1965 Hillman Imp soon with flat six from a Honda

Post by yoeddynz »

sladey wrote: Wed Apr 19, 2023 5:52 am
Hard to believe and engine that size is from a bike.
Yeah its a fairly big engine for a bike eh - but actually sits into the Goldwing frame very nicely and apparently the Goldwings are actually far more nimble than their almost 400kg weight would lead you to believe...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6hmCcD79qAk
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Re: 1965 Hillman Imp soon with flat six from a Honda

Post by 911hillclimber »

Fabulous!
Having recently restored 2 x Honda CB175 bikes, the Honda engineering is well worth having.
Bomb proof box is a good move and as it 'looks right' in there, all will be good!

Will the gear change be conventional, ie not reversed?

Hope you will keep us all informed, ddk loves a resto, and engine swops and the nuttier the better!
Lots of pics mandatory.

That Police man is skilled!
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Re: 1965 Hillman Imp soon with flat six from a Honda

Post by yoeddynz »

Cheers- glad to hear it might go down well here.

Yes - luckily the shift pattern with the subaru transmission, even though turned 180 degrees from its usual position, happens to work out spot on - just a standard 5 speed pattern, reverse below 5th. This was just shear luck more than anything.

Here's my latest update I have only just finished typing up - I have not updated the build thread on oldschool for over 5 months! I'll just copy and paste in the updates here. As above - if anyone wants to read the full project the link is in my first post :)



Well there goes 5 months.

Ha.

I've been too busy doing the summer things, entertaining guests, lots of cycling, loads of swimming and some hiking.

But I have still been whittling away on this engine. I'd love to have done more but like I think I said in a previous post - I only really want to do it when I can properly relax and enjoy the process. Plus summer has continued on quite nicely here - it's really only just become late summer :) However there has been a few chilly evenings and some decent rain had recently which makes for perfect tinkering time.

So where I left off was some water pipe work. I needed to build some pipes to get the cold water into the heads. The original goldwing water pump used to reside about the middle of the engine at the front (now the back..) and feed straight out into a rubber hose that split the flow equally up into the heads. But I'm now bringing the water from the front mounted radiator, via the electric pump, along the side of the engine and up into the heads. I'm going to use the original steel pipes that go into the heads.

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I chopped the bends off the ends of the old hose, fitted them onto some stainless tube like this..

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Now I needed to feed that pipe evenly. I cut a hole in it and squeezed the end of a stainless elbow to suit..

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Mitred the end to suit..

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Welded it in place..

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Then continued the pipe work so it made its way around the block. I've kept it tucked away so its not out on view too much when looking into the engine bay- for a cleaner look. I'll continue the rest of the pipework later on and brace it off a mount further back. Possibly add a little heat shield where it runs close to the exhaust headers although I don't really think the water will absorb up much heat from them. But just in case..

While I was doing the summer things I had some bits turn up from China. Some nice connectors for the engine loom. My hope is to have a setup that really easily connects with just a couple of main plugs. Time will tell on that but these will certainly help.

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Another parcel - more goodies..

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Yay. I can continue on with the exhaust work. I need to form some 3 into 1 collectors to suit. But I need a press.

Then a customers job that was in also needed a press. A Hiace van in which I was rebuilding the front suspension and new bushes had to be pressed into place. So I built a press. We had plenty of steel in the rack left over from customers jobs and an old 12 ton bottle jack so the only thing I had to buy was a pair of springs. I made the press nice and tall to suit my height and allow for long jobs in the future.

Press in action on hiace arms..

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I painted it a nice grey.

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I machined up a stub and a couple of different ends to suit. Over time I'll be sure to accumulate many different bits to use.

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Now I've been using it I wish I'd built one ages ago!!!

So back to the exhaust. I made a form with some pipe offcuts. 3 into 1.

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It worked but I just felt the angle was to sharp a transition.

Version two, on the right, next to version one...

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Worked well but getting near the end of the forming it started to collapse...

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This surprised me. I was expecting the stainless tube to split. The form deformed so much that I couldn't get the last bit of flare I needed.

Roll on version three...

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This one I reinforced..

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It worked a treat. Much better..

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Back into the press and I applied some heat and hit it with a hammer...

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Which created this...

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Now to fuse these collectors onto the headers. I filled in the middle hole between the tubes with a teeny little triangle of stainless. Then with more little triangles I filled up the gaps where I couldnt get the collectors formed close enough.

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That's where I'm at now. I added the filling triangles to both headers and will carefully flap disc them neatly so they match the collectors as well as I can so making for an easier time welding. I know the welding wont be flash. Functional - not artisan.. but I'll just be happy to get to that point because its like a big part of the build to check off.

I promise I shall do my best to get more time in on this build from now on.

however - I do have this shiny Scott CR1 road frame that I've just painted to build up and ride before winter turns up... :)

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Alex
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Re: 1965 Hillman Imp soon with flat six from a Honda

Post by hot66 »

Fantastic project Image. Love these builds which any normal person would roll their eyes and tell you to just buy a 996 :lol:
James

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Re: 1965 Hillman Imp soon with flat six from a Honda

Post by yoeddynz »

Yep - this is the way it has to be for me. I cant even afford a poverty spec 911.

Although there is actually a very very very rusty '69 911 T for sale in NZ that if I could somehow afford to purchase I would love to get back on the road...
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Re: 1965 Hillman Imp soon with flat six from a Honda

Post by 911hillclimber »

Nope!
Everyone does 911, and your Imp is so much more interesting!

What is the BHP/lbft of the Honda engine v the Imp spec?
I guess the Honda/subaru trans will be quite a bit more than the stock Imp trans, by how much though?
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Re: 1965 Hillman Imp soon with flat six from a Honda

Post by Nine One One »

Standard 1500cc Goldwing engine

Bore x stroke (mm) 71 mm x 64 mm
Valves 2 valves/cylinder
Power 100 hp (74.6 kW) @ 5200 rpm
Torque 150 Nm (110.6 ft. lbs) @ 4000 rpm
yoeddynz
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Re: 1965 Hillman Imp soon with flat six from a Honda

Post by yoeddynz »

Yeah - pretty much what he ^ said .

I'm hoping I'll release a smattering of new ponies with the full engine management and slightly opened up exhaust but I'm really not too bothered if it stayed standard goldwing spec power. It's that torque I like the idea of - perfectly suited to making a little imp feel quite peppy.

More than that I just want the sound of a flat six out back. Goldwings can sound lovely when rid of the very quiet standard exhaust mufflers.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NGbImGG ... WL&index=7

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_P0HRfknoSM

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lBB2forqSyo&t=50s
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Re: 1965 Hillman Imp soon with flat six from a Honda

Post by hot66 »

Where in NZ are you ?
James

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Re: 1965 Hillman Imp soon with flat six from a Honda

Post by Hugo 356 »

Gonna sound epic!

Have you landed on a name? GImp (Goldwing Imp) has to be in contension, opening the door to a load of "Bring out the Gimp" 'gags'
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911hillclimber
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Re: 1965 Hillman Imp soon with flat six from a Honda

Post by 911hillclimber »

Agree, the sound track will be great, the torque so so much better!

I expected more power, but in the flyweight Imp, it will be great.
Saves on finding BIG brakes too...
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Re: 1965 Hillman Imp soon with flat six from a Honda

Post by misteralz »

Cool to see you here, Eddy. I've enjoyed following this on Retro Rides!

Agreed about the sound of a Goldwing with the right exhaust - has a really similar 'bark' to a 911.
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