Captain Misery's Miserable Mishaps

It's all a load of bollocks, quite frankly

The Other Blog – The Lightning Seeds Archives

As you may be aware, I’m a Lightning Seeds fan. I’ve set up another blog.

Go visit it:

Cheers and gone!


July 30, 2014 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Special K

10469728_10152254959811378_1715836080619826648_nThe K series engine. It’s a bit of a misunderstood and maligned beast really. Talk of it on internet forums or “daaaaaaaaan the pub” and it will it will be met by OMGHGF (Oh My God, Head Gasket Failure in internetz speakz) and OMGALLROVAZISSHIT. This is because Armchair and Pub Mechanics know more than anyone whatsoever.

True, they have their issues. Yes, some suffer from head gasket failure but the way you hear the so-called experts harp on about it, you’d think the K Series is the only engine to ever suffer from head gasket failure. Aren’t we forgetting certain VW, Vauxhall, Renault, Fiat and Peugeot engines enjoy blowing them for a past time? The garage I worked at for ten years used to look after a lot of K series Rovers. Cornwall is retirement country and there are lots of people who probably should be dead already bought these K series Rovers. I found them as reliable as anything German that we looked after, but like anything they need routine maintenance. Keep on top of them and take care of them, they’re fantastic. Caution should be applied if no maintenance has been carried out.

A brief history of the K series
It was launched in 1988, fitted to the brand new Rover R8 200 series, then later powered the 400 and the Roverised Metro that appeared in 1990. Available in 1.1 single overhead cam and 1.4 twin cam versions, but later the range increased to 1.6 litre and 1.8 as Honda began to limit supply of their engines to Rover. The K series lumps were held together as a sandwich of components using long bolts which which held the engine under compression. The 1.8 was available with a Variable Valve Control (VVC) device that allowed more power, torque and performance. The VVC unit allows some form of witch craft to happen which allows the engine to be incredibly flexible and gives it a pretty much flat torque curve. And it red lines at 7,250 rpm! Later additions included the KV6 in 2.0 and 2.5 litre, 24 valve quad cam variants. Both the K and KV6 are still in production today, following the sale of MG Rover to China corportation SAIC, though they have been revised and renamed N Series and NV6, respectively.

My K-Series
My particular K Series, pictured above, is a 1.6 16v twin cam unit fitted to a Rover 25 of varying shades of blue and black. Today it clicked over to 119,000 miles and was treated to a service, its first service since 98,000! When I bought the 25 just over a year ago it was on 103,000 miles and has pretty much been neglected ever since. But to be fair, it has wanted for nothing. Up until today, the only attention the engine has needed is a tightening of the alternator belt. The cooling system is in fine fettle and the rest of the car has fared pretty well too, needing precious little to keep it going. It has performed brilliantly and reliably – it genuinely hasn’t put a foot wrong in the time I’ve had it. It’s a revvy, peppy, responsive engine and the service it had today has made it just that little bit better. I think the K series, especially the one in my car, is a cracker.

Really, if caught in time, a head gasket is not the end of the world. If repaired properly with good quality materials used, these units will soldier on. Like all cars there’s good and bad, but I still see a heck of a lot of K series Rovers on the road. Would I buy another? You bet your bottom booby I would.

OMGALLROVAZISSHIT? I won’t hear a word of it, thank you please.

July 6, 2014 Posted by | Music | Leave a comment


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