I have a long round trip planned tomorrow, to collect a grill from Scim_rebel. 90 miles either way.
Jacked the car up today to make sure the sump bolts haven't worked loose again... they haven't so that's good.
Also had a look to see if I could see anything obvious with the speedo cable. Seems to be pressed home at the gearbox end with no signs of recent movement, so I have to conclude the cable has broken, or the clock has broken.
But then I noticed the sump drain plug still seems to be dribbling oil, so I tried to give it a gentle turn with the right sized spanner. It wasn't tight, so I gingerly gave it a turn, and a turn, and a turn.... it didn't tighten up at all.
So I've lost a thread.
At first, I didn't think too much of it. I decided as a short term solution to the oil dribble that I'd pack some Sugru around the area of the sump body and drain plug head. At that point my thoughts were merely about a temporary means of ensuring I didn't lose too much oil. Sugru is good for this sort of thing because it can very easily be cut off again once it's time to address the problem properly with the right parts. So I then ordered one of those magnet-cored sump plugs from BurtonPower.
At no point this morning did I consider that by making a few attempts to tighten it up today, I may have cut off any remaining thread, and I may now be in danger of losing my my sump plug on a long journey along three motorways. All I was thinking was that the Sugru packing might help resist the slow dribble. It's only slight.
I did give the plug an outward pull between fingers and thumbs and it seemed to be firmly in place and unwilling to pull straight out... but since then the idea has finally occurred to me that it could be foolish to try and drive 180 miles with a threaded sump plug.
Which thread generally goes first, the plug's or the sump's?
It looks to be the original style style of sump plug...
My oil change late summer may have been the point where it got threaded, or it may have already been threaded and I merely upset it further - it was always dribbling oil so I suspect it was already damaged. I was very careful about removing and refitting it and it seemed to tighten, and wasn't over-tightened when I re-fitted it... finger tightened and then just brought to 'snug' with a 15-20º turn of the wrench.