If you want to keep the oil filter the same as it is in the Rover, then you will need to mount the engine differently. There is just not enough space between the passenger side chassis rail and the engine for the original filter mount. Frontline sell a remote oil filter kit, but again, it’s more expensive than building your own. The adapter plate to the engine is made out of the old Rover filter mounting plate, a flat piece of aluminium with ½ inch right angle plumbing fittings tapped into it. These connect to ½ inch copper pipe which then goes to rubber as the filter is mounted on the body of the car, and there needs to be some allowance for engine movement. The rubber pipe is the power steering fluid return pipe from the Rover, a nice piece of Aeroquip hose that is strong enough for the pressure and temperature of the oil here. This rubber goes back to plumbing where it joins to the filter head from a metro (same as the Rover one) via a tapped adapter plate. This system puts the filter down low, just behind the front valance. The pipes come out from the engine, miss the alternator and its belt and feed out under the steering column. I feel that the advantage of the low mounted filter over the wing mounted frontline item is that the oil will stay in the pipes and filter, so there will be no point when there is air in the pipes and therefore possibly a gap in the oil feed on start-up. The brass adaptor (from a Bedford CF Van) provides a pressure pipe for the dash gauge and also an oil pressure warning light, should I need one. This could be swapped for an oil temperature sensor if necessary.
Using tapered plumbing fittings proved to be only a temporary measure, the vibrations of the engine resulting in slight slackening of the threads in the soft aluminium, and a leak. As this is absolutely impossible to get at without taking the exhaust manifold, coolant rail and alternator off, so it was all taken apart and sealed up again. This sadly didn’t make any difference, and it obviously has to be all back together to get it to a testing point.
Version 2 involved remaking the take off plate after discovering big oil banjo fittings in aluminium from Torques online. These are AN10 (or about 1/2 inch), so slightly bigger than the oil feed holes in the block. A large fine thread is on the banjo bolt centres, and the banjos themselves are positionable in a variety of positions. The holes are very close together, to the hex on the top of one of the fittings had to have the corners taken off it so it would fit past the bulge of the adjacent banjo. For version 2, I used fibre washers on the banjo bolts (this was a mistake!) and the filter stayed in that location.
Version 3 came along in about another year or so, prompted by a quick check under the bonnet and noticing that the alternator belt was trying to cut through the oil filter pipe…. Version 3 is fitted with Dowty washers (steel washers with a rubber sealing surface) – result being no more leaks! Version 3 also moved the filter after getting a new mounting plate, the Version 1 filter end having suffered the same tapered fitting problem as the engine end. A standard filter take off plate was bought from eBay, then returned because the thread wasn’t at right angles, then another one bought. The car now uses the same size full flow oil filter as an A series Mini, or ironically, the A series Midget! There is a spacer plate added with little take offs for the oil pressure gauge, and an oil temperature gauge. There is also space now for a thermostatically controlled oil cooler take off should I need one (oil temp gauge in the process!) Version 3 incorporates stainless steel braided hoses. There are no leaks with Version 3, finally!