Carrera Oil Lines
by Bill Sargent
The text below should help those wishing to assemble 356 Carrera Argus type soft oil line ends onto the stainless steel braided oil hose. The process I use is based on instructions from Warren Eads (Sypder Sports) as well as discussions with Gerry McCarthy and Jim Ansite.
Shown below are the three parts of a carrera small soft oil line hose end. They are the original German "Argus" type fitting with a smooth collar. Current AN type fittings have flats on the collar for a wrench.
Hose end fitting sources: Warren Eads (Spyder Sports - http://www.spydersports.com) can supply the original Argus type fittings. As of 2010 Spyder Sports could also supply pre bent hard oil lines for the 356 carreras, however additional bending is required to fit the hard oil lines to a particular car. Jim Ansite (Ansite Inc - http://www.ansiteinc.com) and Peter Hoffman (Classic Parts - http://www.classic-parts.com) can both supply the Argus hose end fittings with a slightly larger collar that makes inserting the current AN type stainless braided oil hose easier.
Braided Stainless oil hose - I used Earls “Perform-O-Flex” hose for my installation, although there are many choices of AN hose.
15 mm tubing for hard oil lines: In the
1. Measure the length needed for each hose individually based on hard oil lines and other parts installed on the car. Better to cut slightly long (3mm or so) than too short. Do not use old hoses as a guide. Instead offer up new hose held as close as possible to where it has to fit. Mark the hose and then measure the length. The current AN 10 size hose available in the
2. Wrap the hose in duct tape or hockey tape where the cut is to be made. Mark hose where it is to be cut using a contrasting tape - I use blue painter's masking tape all the way around the hose on the cut line.
3. Use a thin cut off wheel on a die grinder to cut the hose. It works surprisingly quickly, but there is a lot of rubber dust in the air so wear a mask. Also wear eye protection – small bits of stainless steel wire in your eyes will be a bad day.
4. Take the tape off the cut end. Using the edge of the cut off wheel aligned axially with the hose so that the wheel rotates toward the cut end, trim off any wires that stick out so that you have a nice clean non frayed hose end. Shown below is a hose end with the wires cleaned up. Any frayed wires sticking out will make it very difficult to install the collar on the hose.
5. Make some soft jaws for your vice to hold the hose end collar. Most people seem to use wood. I found that using standard soft plastic vice jaw inserts worked OK as long as I wrapped the collar in some 1mm rubber sheet to help keep it from rotating.
6. Clamp the collar in your vice and put some normal motor oil inside.
7. Use a broad reamer or a ball shaped hone on a Dremel tool to ream a 2mm chamfer on the rubber inside the hose on the cut end. This is probably best done right after the hose is cut. This needs to be done to allow the hose end to actually start easily into the hose. Blow the hose out with compressed air afterward. The photo below shows a narrow reamer being used after the collar was installed. Later learning indicated it was easier to use a broad reamer prior to installing the collar.
8. Get some thin plastic sheet - I used the tapered neck of an olive oil bottle and cut it into strips about 3 inches long by 1 inch wide. Put some oil on the outside end of the hose. Wrap the plastic around the cut end of the hose so that it forms a funnel out past the end of the hose. Insert the hose into the collar and force it in so that the first 3mm or so of the hose is actually in the collar. While holding the hose in the collar, use some needle nose pliers to pull the plastic out from between the hose and collar - while firmly holding the hose in the collar. Once the plastic is out, confirm there are no stray wires hanging outside the collar. If there are, start over. If the hose is in, with no stray wires, twist the hose into the collar while at the same time pushing it in. Check to make sure the hose is fully into the collar.
9. Remove the hose/collar from the vice and wrap some tape around the hose just below the collar - this lets you see if the collar backs off any while you are inserting the hose end.
10. Put the hose/collar back in the vice with the end of the collar up. Lube up the inside of the hose with the grease of your choice. I used #2 lithium complex grease – same stuff as for wheel bearings. Use the grease liberally.
11. Find a spare fitting that can be threaded into the hose end/nut and tighten them up so that you can get a wrench on the fitting to thread it into the collar on the hose. Liberally coat the hose end with grease.
12. Hand start (no tools yet) the hose end into the collar on the hose. It should go in fairly easily and you should be able to thread it in a few turns by hand. They can easily cross thread, so take some time here. Getting it wrong will cost about $45 for a new small hose end fitting and collar. The larger hose ends cost even more.
13. Once the hose end is started, use a wrench on the fitting attached to the hose end and thread it in until it starts to be difficult to turn. It will likely not have bottomed out. Reverse out the hose end and apply more lube to both the inside of the hose and to the hose end. Start by hand again and then use the wrench to tighten the hose end until it bottoms out. I have found that if I try to tighten up the hose end without the remove and re-lube step, most of the time the hose and or collar start to turn in the vice before the hose end bottoms out in the collar. I also find it useful to hold the hose while tightening the hose end. I cut a piece of the 1mm rubber sheet about 4" square and use it around the hose to help me grip it.
14. Take the hose out of the vice and check that the collar did not back off the hose. If it did, start over and repeat steps 1 thru 13. If starting over and the end of the hose has too many frayed wires to get the collar back on, it may be necessary to cut a new piece of hose. If the hose end is installed correctly, congratulations! Now, repeat steps 1 thru 13 to install the fitting on the other end of the hose.
15. Once both ends have been installed you need to clean the inside of the newly assembled hose. I used a twisted wire with swabs made from strips of towel about 1" x 4" soaked in paint thinner pulled thru the hose. Repeat with clean swabs until the there is no noticeable grease or dirt on the swab. Run the swabs alternating from either end of the hose. When clean, blow out with compressed air.
16. Install the hose on the car. Once all hoses are installed, pressure test the entire system on the car. Shown below is a photo of the pressure test fitting I used. The valve allows the oil system on the car to be isolated and left for a period of time to check for leaks. I used 90 psi shop air and checked after 24 hours. You do not want to test with oil – if there is a leak, especially at one of the silver soldered fittings, you will have great difficulty getting it clean.
17. You are finished! Congratulations! Shown below are two completed hose assemblies for connecting the front oil coolers in a 356 A carrera to the hard oil lines. It will take between 20 and 45 minutes for all the steps shown above to install one hose end. Best I ever got was about 20 minutes a fitting if everything went right. Others have told me 30 to 45 minutes each is non uncommon. Maybe even an hour for the first one.