The Lancia Lambda Australian Alpine Tour 2019 started off well with a lovely drive from Healesville, however some 70Km later when taking off from a stop sign in Alexandra a very loud clicking noise erupted from the engine and as luck would have it on the left was a nice shady spot next to a park (toilets) over the road from the local paper (publicity) and diagonally opposite a very good café (food, coffee) so after nearly 5 years and 30,000 Km, Lambda decided to let me down gently.
As usual when these sort things happen, there quickly gathered a large crowd of Lancia and local people all of which one way or another would contribute to the repair. The bonnet came off to rest on the conveniently lush grass, next the rocker cover and it was quickly diagnosed that a split pin had failed causing the axle of the rocker roller bearing to fall out, spilling the 8 rollers, 7 of which were fished out with Peter Renou’s magnetic probe, the 8th roller hopefully is resting peacefully in the sump.
Of course, I thought I had put a spare set under a seat somewhere and everyone else thought they had a set but to no avail. I am not sure who suggested it but as the rollers are 4mm in diameter a 4mm drill bit was purchased and one of the local onlookers a retired mechanic volunteered his workshop but more notably his angle grinder, we added Marc Bondini to the mix and a facsimile roller popped out the other end. The theory being the part of the drill bit close to the flutes would be hard and was slightly less than 4mm so it would really just be a packer and not take much load.
Lastly the local mechanic gave us some petroleum jelly to keep the rollers in place while we refitted it all. The engine started with no noise and bonnet was reunited after its rest on the grass. The local press was duly impressed, so hopefully by now if it’s been a slow news week, we have achieved our 5 minutes of fame. This had all taken some time, so we moved our lunch location from Myrtleford to the excellent café over the road. 1000Km later thanks to Simmo and Rob Bienvenu a “real” roller appeared, the drill bit roller was swapped out and showed no signs of wear.
Thanks everyone for your enthusiastic help. May all your breakdowns be as enjoyable as mine