Public Portfolio Site & Various Posts.

East Kent College

K-College / East Kent College: Final Post & Reflections


So this is probably the last college related post, three years of studying and eight individual courses passed…

I’ll start off with the recent exam stuff, and LV13 which is all about transmissions and related components in the drive line. The good news is I passed the test easily with 93%, but then again I was not very happy about the exam highlighting nothing whatsoever on DSG gearboxes. I thought this was extremely odd since their presence in the industry is borderline mainstream now, and my test highlighted mostly on diaphragm clutches and epicyclic gears which is relevant but rather old. Luckily our lecturer highlighted on DSG systems through the IMI ATT presentation software. I’m thankful we at least had some class time to cover the principles of DSG in layout and operation.

If you haven’t done your LV13K exam here are some pointers:

Forget revising the new stuff like DSG it’s not in the exams: I can only speak for 2016, maybe 2017+ they will start doing questions on DSG/ Dual Mass/ Multi plate Systems and Mechatronics. Do not revise too heavily on new systems and concentrate on regular systems.

Revise symptoms to problems for example: Broken detent springs, worn engine mounts, bent drive shafts, clutch slip, engaging gears, worn syncromesh baulk springs, worn crown wheel and pinion teeth, worn friction linings etc…

Gearbox Diagrams: Look at the ones in Hillier’s and what is on the two IMI LV13K practice exams, typically it will ask you to identify a specific gears through choosing two letters corresponding to the diagram. So if both 5th speed gears off the primary and lay shaft are are denoted as I , K on the diagram then you choose that. Remember you can always rule out reverse quite easily as the gears will be straight cut !

CVT Boxes: You only need to touch on the basics for this, for example the fact a CVT has an infinite number of gear ratios, and that the belt is inextensible and transmits drive by thrust.

Torque Converters: Once again you just need to scratch the surface, the main 3 components (Impellar/Stator/Turbine) and how they interact for example “the turbine and impellar rotating at the same speed”.

Refer to the Assessment Requirements: I found this online, and it’s fairly useful in terms of picking apart what I needed to revise. Yes it’s dated 2010 but as far as I’m aware it’s still on the IMI site so must be legitimate for now…


So this is what my E-Portfolio now displays: 100% !

So everything is done, and honestly it wasn’t that hard. The AE06 electrical exam way back around December was probably the hardest section since the questioning is extremely vast. My result of 65% was way below average for me but still anything over 60% is a pass, and even if you get 100% it’s still just classed as just a pass (don’t ask me why).

I believe my E-Portfolio will still need to be checked through by an alternative member of staff just like my paper based portfolios of previous years, then I get my certificate ?


As you can see from above the last few practicals have been quite fun, my lecturer allowed me to do some side jobs for staff at the college. First up was a window which would not operate on a 2006 Golf, on inspection it soon turned out to be the regulator cables that had corroded and snapped. Β£25 off eBay for the new regulator and fitted by myself and Ariel in about 40 minutes.

East Kent College FIA/FIM Santa Pod Trip


I will do a more in depth post in the coming weeks on this event, but damn it was a good day ! I only took 327 photos so I did well to control myself, and I got some amazing results with the retro EF 35-105mm lens. Many thanks to the IMI for linking up with SP to provide the excellent paddock tours.

For full event photos see here: Santa Pod FIA FIM Test and Qualify Day


East Kent College MCM Comic Con Trip


So the next day I was up again for more coach journeys from hell (I’m kidding it wasn’t so bad) but luckily not so far to go this time, It’s the London ExCel for the MCM Comic Con 2016 ! I didn’t take many photos at the event but it was good fun. I must admit I wish I come up with a costume for the event but since I was half dead from SP the day before I was not too bothered. As you can see I asked for photos with the Stormtroopers which went down well !

MCM Comic Con London Photos Here: Comic Con 2016 Photos


Throwback Photo: Level 2 crew Curtis, Sam and Ariel removing and replacing the hand brake assembly on the Ford Mondeo.


So what were my best experiences from college ?

My first year was the most enjoyable, since I learned a huge amount in the workshop thanks to Dennis and Barry. I had a great tutor Nathan, who helped me pass the LV2 Functional Skills Maths, English and PSD easily.

The second year was by far the hardest with having to do my GCSE’s again after 10 years. I thought it was impossible thinking I would struggle, but it turned out English was rewarding and genuinely interesting. The class was a good laugh and our teacher structured the course really well, maths on the other hand was a nightmare… Time went on and I didn’t know what was going on, or who was teaching so it become a worry. After four months of little progress a new Maths teacher showed up, and I had around three months left before the exam so it seemed rather hopeless. Despite this I somehow got my C in the end thanks to Phil and his excellent teaching, coupled with the extra workshop lessons and everything he put onto the Moodle platform for revision.

Learning aside there have been some great social experiences as well, the SU always provided good debates for the students (and free sandwiches). The trips that I’ve been on with the college this year have been inspiring such as Brooklands / Mercedes Benz World, which was an awesome course relevant outing thanks to Stuart. Go-Ape and the more recent Comic Con were really fun thanks to Ana and the staff over at the Student Centre.


What happens Next ?

I’ll keep the blog site going, probably from a photographic perspective and perhaps personal hobbies/interests. If your visiting this in the year 3000 or something looking for “Vintage College Stuff” just use the East Kent College menu to view the academic related posts…

Thanks to all the WordPress users who have checked out my blog, it’s been great to have an audience of followers and interested readers.

Kenny. πŸ™‚

East Kent College: April Break Post


The year seems to be going super fast, and finally the weather in the UK is getting better. I’ve mainly been out cycling which has felt somewhat beneficial, and over the break we had an awesome trip at the Go Ape course near Leeds Castle. I’ll be honest I was a little nervous at first since I had no real idea what to do, but after working out the equipment it was really amazing. I want to do a similar course perhaps bigger and more dangerous, probably have to go half way round the world for that !


Here is one of the Folkestone students that was in my group, the zip lines are pretty big, around 250m long and guessing probably around 100ft high.


I tried to use my camera on the big zip line and get a 1/15th shot to show the speed of motion, but I Kinda ended up in a spin… I was holding the cam with two hands and using the viewfinder when I’m supposed to be holding onto the safety harness ! Why did I not use live view you might well ask ? I use the view finder so damn much I forgot about it to be honest. Basically it didn’t work out but I still like the effect…


Like I said with cycling I’ve been doing a lot of that, and the Hope Pro 2 hub I’ve fitted to the bike has really improved the drive pickup, though I’m still getting used to the sound ! Here I’ve parked up at Sandy Lanes just checking it out, a couple of bricks and sticks to move otherwise some of trails seem okay. I want to rebuild the front wheel as well now it seems too weak in comparison. After 16 years I decided to renew the bottom bracket also, it didn’t need one but they are not expensive so I’ve fitted an UN55 in place of the UN52 and it seems good.

In the workshop I’ve completed a few more tasks and only have one left to do now ! Recent ones have been diagnosing a turbo charger pressure fault, audio equipment fault, and a steering related fault. I got to do some kind of pre-MOT inspection so I’m not sure when that is happening because it will have to be done in the other workshop, using the necessary testing facilities like the brake roller.

f1 to k46

Here is an example of the evidence I have to submit with diagnosing audio equipment. Although the problem was damage to the component speaker wiring in the door I still have to show a methodical approach, so going to the stereo fuse first, then moving on to checking the output from the head unit amplifier etc. until getting to the component speaker in the door and no signal after entering the door indicates a wiring damage/high resistance.

I got my LV07 assignment passed a few weeks back which is good. This assignment is about describing an electronic fuel injection system and outlining an in depth diagnosis of a specific problem that can occur on the system. I did my investigation about solder breaks on the PCB for a Fuel Pump Relay. I have Mark Lamond with his great website to thank for the in depth look at the Honda CRX.

Main Relay Fault Honda CRX – For LV07

With this I was able to base my own essay off the scenario and pin it onto a newer vehicle. This fault is only common on 80’s / 90’s era cars but it still poses some relativity with vehicles that often cross climates from cold winters to hot summers.

LV07 engine and LV08 chassis exams have both been passed first time as usual. I was not totally impressed with theΒ  engine LV07 exam, getting questions about variable valve timing and just generally old stuff really. There was nothing on electric cars, hybrids, common rail diesel, direct injection, variable turbo geometry etc… I was not really expecting these things to come up, but I think the exams should focus on much newer tech because it gets quite boring covering stuff I learned in my first year.


I end the post on a rather tragic note, and that was the team I participated with did not win the skills competition over at the Broadstairs campus, we came second by half a point ! Well done to EKC Broadstairs for getting 1st place and to the other colleges that took part in the event, it was a good laugh and I leaned a fair bit on the day.


East Kent College: February Break Post


If you haven’t noticed I’ve decided to space the “The College Blog” posts out a bit more and basically round things up on the term breaks, reason being there’s not a whole lot to post about over these cold winter months…


January, and coming back from Christmas it was a great surprise to have one of the new lifts ready to install. It was a tricky job getting the lift and the car in the perfect place, due to the overhead power outlets and other obstacles but as you can see it’s finally all sorted.


One of the lecturers had a Mini Cooper in for a check engine light, so it was onto the Snap-On Verdict to see what we could find…


E-OBD under the drivers foot well at a very steep angle, I had to bend my neck quite a lot in order to see it !


The convenience of wireless on the Verdict diagnostics is obvious, I just plug this wireless module into the car whilst another student can begin scanning and looking into the data trouble code(s)…


Well we have a code, just the one specifying P1118. A quick look around online pointed to the code being related to the Mass Air Flow sensor, which is pretty tricky to gain access to on this 2007 1.6 engine, so we did not have time to get to this. Me and Alex removed the air intake system and cleaned everything, and it appeared the intake box was not properly seated (so potentially air getting in after the filter). After refitting the intake my lecturer has reported the engine light has now gone away, so an easy fix this time !


I’ve been pushing on with the level 3 assignments, since I find them quite straight forward once I’ve found a good information source. Transmissions will be my last assignment so I chose a very mainstream gearbox to write up about: AL4 Autobox.

This transmission in fitted to literally anything French and automatic since 1998 to around 2007, so there are plenty of models to choose from. I picked the Renault Modus initially based around what electronic faults I found on the forums but eventually worked off a Citroen technical training manual, which answered a lot of the questions I needed:

Citroen Tech AL4 Transmission

If you have yet to do your transmission assignment essay this is a good place to start. I personally chose the ECU fault and explained the procedure or replacement and programming as the rectification.


I’ve recently sat my LV07 and LV08 exams…. or actually no. I should have done them by now but the exam dates have been put on hold for now so I have no tests to reflect on this time. I will include exams in my next post so stay tuned for all that madness.

Another week, another car this time a Seat called Ibiza !


I don’t know much about Seat models at all but it’s a really cool colour. So This was another staff vehicle who wanted advice regarding the condition of the rear brakes…


The confirmation soon became obvious the rear disc rotors were no more and very corroded, these need to go ASAP ! Notice how the wheel has turned brown with all the runoff.


Bonus problem with this one was the check engine light being on, and since I was working on a different task this was left with the apprentices. He owns a Seat so he checked out what the code was…


P1180 relates to the o2 sensor, we didn’t have time to sort this out but the information was passed on. In most cases if an o2 sensor code is present and the car still appears to run normal it will normally be the secondary sensor (post cat).

I haven’t really done my job cards in a fashionable order this year but more or less just done whatever seems appropriate on the day:

AE06S – Task 4 Practical Diagnose and rectify heated screen fault 19-Nov-2015
AE06S – Task 5 Practical Diagnose and rectify electric mirror fault 09-Feb-2016
LV07S – Task 2 Practical Engine management 28-Jan-2016
LV07S – Task 4 Practical Exhaust Emissions Reduction System 26-Jan-2016
LV08S – Task 2 Practical Braking System 09-Feb-2016

So these are what I’ve done so far, but still plenty of tasks to do in the coming months and I’ll feature those as I get them done…


Onto the more relaxed side of college life, I went with the college on a trip to the Dover Transport Museum. This a special open day for the students to see what kind of work experience opportunities are available. It was more designed at the Level 1 and 2 students, but I met a guy called Brenden who is currently restoring a 1928 Guy Motors B series truck for the London to Brighton event in May.


Students checking out the B series truck.


Some interesting photos from the past…


I ended up spending the afternoon doing some sanding on the metal and woodwork areas, and I’ll hopefully be putting in some time over the half term break to help. I took the Camera with me to get some photos of course, they came out alright.

Thanks for stopping by !

East Kent College: Online Practice Exams Level 3


Just a quick post here, Ariel a good friend of mine on the course stumbled across some good online practice test links:

ASE Exams Link 1

Google Sites Practice Exams Link 2

I found these useful for my first AE06 electrical exam so hopefully this will serve as a good source to do a little extra revision. You got the style of the multiple choice platform, so it’s not far off doing the real thing.

East Kent College: Christmas Break Post


I’m Off college for two weeks now so what’s been going on ?

My first portfolio segment is mostly done, and I had my first of the Level 3 exams last week which was the electrical exam. You need to get 60% to pass and I only got 63% EEEK! I was a little annoyed although 67% was the highest score of the class, so I cannot complain too much. I’m glad it’s done with seeing it was meant to be the hardest of all the exams this year, mainly because the scope of questions are extremely vast from satellite navigation triangulation, to hybrid Regen systems, air con and many more…

The course manager also said if I had time to attempt the LV506K exam as well which was all about vehicle servicing. This would of been my last exam of the year and like the AE06 is another 30 questions, I had plenty of time so I went for it and scored 83% which was pretty good (since I had not revised to do this exam at all). So I’ve now got two exams out of the way wowza πŸ˜€


Practical wise it has been very quiet, the level 3 workshop is currently having 2 scissor type car lifts being installed, well by installed I mean we was in there last week putting them in place and they’re really heavy. This is not the workshop but these are the exact kind of lifts we have, and they roll them about on the two wheels at the other end. The problem is the caster wheels are too small, literally the slightest speck of dust on the floor and the damn wheels grind to a halt, just like skateboarding when you hit a small stone and go kinda flying ! Anyway the lifts are finally in place now and just need hydro lines and power, I’ll do a post giving my opinion on them once they are in action.


Despite the workshop being out of action I have done one thing recently and it’s a real fiddly job too. This was a member of staffs car at college, a Peugeot 206 1.4 air con model. The symptom was the car kept overheating (fan not working) so I went through the internet looking at common problems ECT, resistor, relays, wiring… and as you can see from the photo above a wiring issue was clear. I’ve never seen a cable so bad it’s completely oxidized to the point where the cable was twice as thick as it should, and crumbling like chalk.

This wiring section going to that green box is basically the high speed relay for the radiator cooling fan, there is also a low speed fan just above this which functions fine but with the high speed not functioning the car will keep going into the red usually it’s worst in traffic. It’s a bad design on Peugeot’s where they thought it would be fine to conceal the relay electrics with the radiator, instead of being situated in an engine bay compartment like most cars have. The result is obvious, exposure to temperature fluctuations and weather exposure destroys the cabling and the relays over time. Luckily the relays both worked and just required a good cleaning on the contacts.


You also have the fan resistor situated down in a place that is really hard to get too, this might also need changing soon because it is quite corroded in places.


I borrowed a little cable from college to make this up and replace the excess of bad cabling on the harness.


This is the high speed relay cleaned up and to be refitted with space connectors, I’ve taped it up as good as possible to protect the contacts which should last better than the hollow plastic connector. This is now fitted to the car and the fan is kicking in at full RPM so it’s a fix for now and we’ll see how it goes..

I would like to thank these sites for the useful information:

Odd Discovery – Communicating with my car (206)

Peter Cooper Car Repairs

206 Bumper Removal Guide

Peugeot Forums suggested problems

So that’s it for the Christmas break post not an awful lot to share, but more photography posts and what not to come (probably).


East Kent College: IMI E-Portfolio & Assignments


I’ve been feeling pretty ill this past week so I thought I’d give followers an insight to how work is now submitted at college. It’s a fairly big change this year and it’s now effectively “paperless” if you got a web browser handy. Last year our portfolios were all paper based, even if typed on word it all had to be printed and in a folder. Then even after all the marking is done and the students have left the college has to retain the portfolios safely for a couple of years, so you can imagine the hassle of archiving folders of peoples work especially over the top portfolios like mine. The screenshot above shows an example of what it’s like now, a web based UI with simple input boxes for text only.


For evidence photos/diagrams etc. we have an upload form towards the bottom after the input boxes. I think I’m the only person who even uses this but I like the feature, and you can never have too many photos of course ! AE06K is the name of the first assignment this year and is about vehicle electrical diagnostics. It’s quite odd because you have explain in around 1,000 words how you would go about diagnosing a specific electrical fault including rectification without necessarily carrying out the job in real life, so you have to really dig around online and through book’s, manuals to get together a strong write up (I mean type up) with correct explanations and evidence in the forms of wiring diagrams and other images to support your work.

I think these tasks are not too difficult for me personally, but It can be a struggle for students who are not interested in a specific car manufacturer or model. So here is why I went with the Honda Civic 96-00 for doing a central locking problem scenario:

1. This unit (and only this one) requires selection of a known vehicle either personally owned or from college including VIN, so I used the one from my old car,

2. the Honda Civic has always been my favorite (affordable) car for years, and information sourcing for this car is possibly if not the easiest on the web.

So after a few YouTube videos, a visit to NWP4life and print screens from some old Civic PDF manuals I already had one assignment pretty much complete. So I cannot stress how much of a difference it makes to base the assignments on a car you know well’ish at least, it makes the information sourcing very easy.


So I had central locking completed pretty quickly and I was stuck for a while on what to do for section two…

Our college technicians car currently has a problem with a rear heated windscreen, and since me and one of the apprentices had gone into much depth to fix the problem it was basically a matter of me typing out the job in depth and that was section two taken care of !




One aspect of ruling out a broken demister switch was pretty easy since we have another identical Vectra C at the college to swap parts over, sadly it wasn’t the switch that was at fault !

Students on Level 3 last year were pretty lucky only needing 60% to pass these assignments, but now on the IMI it’s 100% so they have to be pretty spot on to be accepted. I had mine handed back on 85% with corrections and information to add so I didn’t get it right first time. So with this assignment hopefully out of the way soon I can focus more on the first online exam which has been set for December, not looking forward to that !

East Kent College: Autumn Break Post


Apologies for not posting in a while, I’ve been sidetracked on the Flickr hype and it’s taken my time away from posting on here. So the first two months are over and it’s fair to say I’ve got next to nothing. The reason for this is due to staff leaving and being off ill and with the Level 3 group only compromising of a dozen students our lessons got effectively cancelled while things get sorted out. I agreed to a Β£5421.00 loan so it’s pretty annoying to have classes cancelled and not being able to get on with tasks in the workshop as I’m usually well on with my portfolio by now…



Despite the poor first month back I decided to wait it out and thankfully things are improving as of this week, there was a stupid hole in the workshop (formally the motorcycle brake tester) which has been filled in and we now have some decent screens up on the wall to hook up to laptops and diagnostic equipment which were much needed. The first job that has come up was for our technicians car which has a rear heated window fault which can hopefully be used in my portfolio. I have so far checked the grid, F4 fuse and no.10 relay to find no issues, but with the switches back light not even illuminating I’m pretty sure that is where the fault lies. The damn security forks for releasing OEM sound systems have gone missing so I will carry on with this task next week…


With not much actual work going on the college staged a Tug of war sort of challenge, this involved having to tow a car a whole lap around the campus. It was a successful event and the weather was really good. Somehow out of the 7 or so groups who entered my team set the best time of the day so well done to them, and yes one team managed to crash into a bush, another team took out some cones, and another lot went up the curb nearly crashing into a wall which was pretty hilarious.

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Lastly we finally had our first Automotive trip at EKC Dover. I didn’t think it would eventually happen but we headed over to Brooklands and Mercedes Benz World this week to check out some amazing history in automotive and aviation. Both places are free to visit so they are well worth checking out. The staff at Brooklands are extremely passionate and knowledgeable, one guy Peter gave us an in depth tour around the ERA workshop which I was very thankful for.



Mercedes Benz World didn’t kick off as well as I snapped some photos of two cars parked out front (SLR 722 and an SLS AMG GT Black Series) and then outta nowhere this security guy came over telling me off. It turned out Mercedes Benz has some sort of policy where you are not allowed to take photos of customer cars on their property so I respected that and deleted the photos. Moving on though it was really nice inside and more cars to check out…



For all my photos go to: Kenny Freeland Flickr Page

Not sure when the next college post will be, perhaps closer to Christmas when I’m supposed to have my electrical unit finished along with a few essays and online exams so I’ll post on how they went !

East Kent College: ScannerDanner and Real Fixes Real Fast


Over the summer break I’ve been trying to learn about Snap-on’s diagnostic equipment, reason for this is the college has a new verdict setup which I’ll be allowed to use next year. After some digging I found two great channels on YouTube which are really in depth and easy to understand:

Real Fixes Real Fast Channel

ScannerDanner Channel

Both channels are well worth subscribing to if your college has recently got any new snap on diagnostic kit, or even if you are still using older models there are many different models covered from video to video.


East Kent College: GCSE Results Day UK


So everyone in the UK today get their GCSE results, mostly 16 year old kids who appear to be in tears because they didn’t get an A* but meanwhile back on The College Blog all I care about are some C grades. Well here we go despite all the odds I actually got a C in maths lol I’m a genius ! Seriously though I’m not a big fan of maths not by principal, I mean I love it’s uses but I just hate the damn exam questions you get… I’m so glad I can finally move on from my maths nightmare !

Oh and what about English ? I think I could of got a B easily if I actually finished the exam ! I’m not a fast writer and it’s a shame because the exam was not hard at all, just I only managed to complete half of it !

Good luck to all you other college re-sitters and I hope you got the results you needed/wanted. Now I can chill.

East Kent College: Summer Break Post


Although college is somewhat closed right now I’ve been in the past 2 weeks helping staff strip down the motorcycle workshop and get it ready for automotive next year.


So last Wednesday 2 cars have gone to scrap heaven/hell with a new vehicle being delivered for next year, and well yeah it’s this Xsara Picasso MPV. It has a few dents here and there but I spent a good couple of hours cleaning out the interior and engine bay to make it more presentable. It’s really spacious inside with fold down tables behind the seats, maybe students can sit in this car to write up their work πŸ˜€


So I took these images a few months ago when I found out the Motorcycle course was to be discontinued. In replacement of this is going to be an expansion of the motor vehicle department and this room is most likely where the auto-rigs and specialist diagnostic equipment will go to create some kind of level 3 technology room. So here are some photos…


A shot along the main work bench with valve compressors, vices and general tools.


There are not many bikes here since Lecturer Dennis left, he had some amazing bikes and plenty of kit so these photos don’t do justice for how the workshop was last year. A lot of the machines in the background are to be sold off to create some space for 3 or 4 cars to go in here.


The floor in here is super clean compared to the car workshop so it will make for a nice tech room.


I spent one afternoon making an inventory list for the workshop though it won’t serve much of a purpose for long. The computers were filthy and my OCD cleaning kicked in so I ended up dusting the workstations down and sorting out all the cabling which was a mess. I’ll have to post up the computer arrangement now it’s so much better.

About Punto Engine

The next thing I’ll do is replace all the old motorcycle posters with automotive related prints. One of my first examples is this Fiat FIRE engine description, I think posters like this will be good for the students as it will be linked directly to actual cars parked in the new workshop.


Alright I’ve been playing some games again πŸ˜€ With the student centre and the consoles being setup I’ve finally got the idea of doing a sort of Top Gear lap challenge on the driving game Forza. I created a replica lap time board where you stick up the details just like on the TV show, with a simple outline of how to setup and play the game. I set a slow baseline time so students can go ahead and beat that, but supposedly some members of staff have posted some times up so I’ll have to go check out what’s been going on lol ! Hmm what the hell happened to those balloons ?

Technician is off on holiday now so I’m also off now. I might be attending a few meetings in August otherwise I can finally finish off rebuilding my bike. Cya !

East Kent College: EKC Fest 2015 Success !


It’s with pleasure to announce the first EKC Festival for Dover was a big success ! It was a great turnout of over 100 students and the activities were great fun coupled with perfect summer weather.


The layout for the event went perfectly also, with everything going into place as it should.


I also typed up the results for the Rodeo Bull so people can check where they ended up, ohh I only did 24 seconds ! Thanks to everyone who made it to the EKC Fest this year and we look forward to somehow making it even better next year !

Online Test 162: Knowledge of light vehicle transmission and drive-line units and components


Dubbed to be hardest of all the exams we only had a few lessons on this area so I thought If I was going to fail anything it would be on this ! I did some revision the night before by completing all the manual, clutch and automatic tests on LJ Cloud with mixed results but it was helpful. In the end I think it only gained me on 2 questions in the actual exam. My result this time was 74 or 76% I think which is only a Merit ! What surprised me more was the lack of automatic transmission questions there was nothing on torque converters or anything. It was mainly sliding mesh box components, gear ratio calculations and gear rotation.


My word of advice is learn anything you can about transmission internals and clutches in your spare time over the year, because if your class ends up with a couple of weeks to cover this topic there is no way you will be able to learn everything that comes up in the test. Things to do in the workshop are definitely take a manual gearbox apart, this is the best way for learning all the components. Here are some useful revision style questions we were set before the exam by our lecturer:

Name 2 types of clutch

= Diaphragm and Coil & Spring.

Name 2 methods of clutch operation ?

= Cable and Hydro.

Aligning UJ’s on a prop shaft is known as what ?

= Phasing.

What type of teeth are fitted to a reverse gear ?

= Straight Cut / Spur (dog box).

What is the gear ratio of a reverse gear on a manual G/box ?

= 16:1.

What is the oil pressure on an auto box ?

= Typically 50PSI+ on a standard car.

What is the name of the oil used on an auto box ?

= ATF (automatic transmission fluid)


So that is officially my last exam out the way and level 2 automotive repair is done ! This might be the end of City & Guilds for me as well with the possibility of moving to the IMI course next year. Job cards and exams will be a bit different for a start and I think there are other things like essays etc, so I’ll post about these changes and what I think when I go into Level 3 in September/October.

East Kent College: I ended up on TV…


Yes it’s finally happened I made it on TV (it was only a matter of time lol)

Basically it was about presenting a simple overview of some of the new facilities at the college which really need to be shown off to the public. They didn’t really feature much of the new equipment for the automotive department but still I cannot complain.


I also found out I was in the Kent news online and Dover Express paper ? This shot is from the Employers fair a couple of weeks ago when my lecturer (Ian) was demonstrating some key features of the fault finding auto-rig with the Verdict OBD kit hooked up. I’ll report anymore famous moments though this will probably be it for now πŸ™‚

East Kent College: Student Awards 2015


I got an award for my contribution towards helping the college this year ! I didn’t expect it but it’s great to be recognized by the staff for helping out wherever I can, and over the year I guess it’s added up.

This is the East Kent College student awards which took place at Discovery Park in Sandwich, Kent.


This is the award nice smooth glass ! It looks great next to the stereo, but I better keep the sound levels down ! I also got a cheque for Β£50.00 from Ramsgate based company ‘WW Martin’ Construction which was great. My passport expired last month so this can go towards renewing that…

WW Martin (many thanks)


What I need to do now is win another one next year to go on the other side of my stereo, because I’m a bit OCD when it comes to symmetry πŸ˜€ I have to mention a big thanks to Barry Turner our Workshop Technician for the Dover campus. He was the one back in September who gave me the opportunity to help out at college during the term breaks, and from this I become more engaged with the rest of the campus in helping out more.

Online Test 151: Knowledge of routine light vehicle maintenance


This one was funny because I didn’t even know we had an online exam on servicing until it was announced a week before we sat it ! Despite this it was quite a generic exam which for anyone who has passed all their previous exams through level 2 should not worry about at all. Only 25 questions in this test instead of the usual 30 which I thought was odd, but this was fine by me seeing we had the 162 exam the following week. Some questions on this test were images of tools and you had to state their uses, also parameters like tyre wear and the “bounce test”. One other thing which I got a few questions on was related to working in a garage environment and communication with customers for example:

“You carry out a service on a vehicle and it appears to have a leaking shock absorber, what do you do ?”

Fit a new one straight away

Notify the customer

Do not tell anyone

Replace the coil spring

So these are more common sense questions and testing your ability on making the right decisions in the workplace. My advice for this test is look at general tests such as the “blink rate test” and MOT procedures. I got 84% on this one so not my best but I’ll take another distinction certificate.

East Kent College: EKC Fest 2015 Update


College is getting quieter now, courses are finishing and people are disappearing and there is only a few weeks left for this year. So the EKC Festival is set for next week which I’m hoping will go well, I just spent the other evening making all this bunting at home for the Student Centre but I need to make more now, Hmm I hope all this stays up I only used some real budget tape oh my πŸ˜€


My room has sort of become a bunting factory of some sort but I cannot complain when I can used the printers at college. Doing this on my photo printer would have seen me through a thousand cartridges probably ! I do need to get more string now though that’s running low



Here is the initial idea for the event layout. This will probably develop a bit once the dimensions of the activities like the rodeo bull simulator is known !

map V1

Here we have some of the Posters I designed for the event which are pretty much everywhere you go on campus now !


This is the invite that’sΒ  in the process of going out to students which I think is alright πŸ˜€ This was not totally necessary seeing it’s on a college day anyway, It should however help make people aware of the event being very much free (apart from the waffle van) and they should be around to take advantage of this.



So everything is pretty much set now. Just more bunting to make now !

East Kent College: Half Term Break Post

There really hasn’t been nothing to report from the workshop in the last month or so because I’ve had nothing to do.

Now it’s close to the end of the course we are now in the classrooms going over transmissions and clutches for the next online test, with some lessons for going over topics for resitting exams which I don’t need to do.

One thing to mention is this grass trimmer though which come in not running well. I took all the carb apart and cleaned it to no success sadly.

I picked up an IMI welcome pack from the college, it’s not bad really and gives some pointers in what to do when looking for work in the industry and planning your career path etc.

The magazine is pretty nice and has some good articles especially on diesel vs. hybrids which concludes the hybrid is better for the congested city, and the diesel is better for the long distance open road (kinda obvious I guess).

Here we go I can’t bear to look at these things anymore, I’m just glad I’ve had the same maths teacher since Christmas. He’s really good and I’ve tried to pack as much mathematical madness into my brain, but I’m still pretty crap and taking extra workshop lessons to try and make me remember things.

So it’s exam week next week, and I really wish the college made me do GCSE’s last year instead of the Functional Skills LV2 stuff which was pointlessly easy for me. I will be watching Romeo & Juliet oh I mean err reading Romeo and Juliet again and doing more edexel past papers for maths. The 17th will be the last exam I need to do.


Lastly the end of year social event is really starting to come together with all the above booked so far, the student union has worked well as a group to get this organized so I’m hoping it will be a great event. The next phase is just planning the layout and some decorative touches like bunting which I kinda plan to make myself (oh dear) so I’m designing a template for that on Ps right now.

Book: The Autocar Handbook (ILIFFE & SONS Limited Third Edition 1911)

The Autocar Handbook, where do I start with this ? My dad said he picked this up at a boot fair for 50P years and years ago…

As you can see the condition is terrible, but inside the book it’s still in good shape besides the spine being on the brink of collapse. In the top corner it states 1 /6 NET which I thought meant it was book one of six πŸ˜€ But actually this is the price of the book. So with that cleared up lets see what it’s about !

The book had no date other than the stated ‘Third Edition’ but wait what is this annotations ? This book was once owned by what looks to read “CT Paice” or “Paige” I’m not sure and the date 10/10/1911. From my guess this would of have been the original owner of the book, and either a passionate motorist or mechanic to be as we can now look further on.

On a page for ignition system wiring the person has decided to introduce some extra illustrations of his own which are really cool.

Also further on were examples of translastion from French to English, was this person originally French, who knows ? I also found annotations in Spanish as well…

The book is a great all round publication of understanding and working on cars from the era, check out the three main sources of power Petrol, Steam and Electric Cars which is just what you woul….Wait a minute Electric Cars ?! Yes folks the electric car which has only just really come around for us in the last decade can be traced back over 100 years ! It just shows how the desire for fossil fuels dominates us until it eventually runs out, and we will all need our electric cars eventually whether you like them or not πŸ™‚

Lets have a look at some annual pricing costs for the classic car driver. Petrol for the year well that’s Β£13.00 and insurance oh Β£10.00. Also notice things like repairs and grease, clearly a more common thing to be working on your car just as much as you drove the damn thing.

Here is the diagram for Steering Axis Inclination or SAI. Because the car has not fundamentally changed in terms of it’s concept a lot information from this book is still totally relevant today.

Another example here is Ackermann Steering Geometry, this is exactly how my lecturer drew it up on the board in tech/theory class a few months back…

The book really shows its age when you get to the back. This section is about what you should wear when you drive and this is description of the “Parapluie Coat” a type of overcoat:

“The coat is a the piece de resistance. It is the sort of thing upon which one aquires ideas of one’s own. Ours materialised as follows: A rather dark drab waterproof cloth, cut double breasted, and with a serviceable turn up collar, with tab to button across the throat. Straps to the sleeves, so they could be folded and secured around the wrists. Lined with chamois leather throughout, and the sleeves lined again with Italian cloth to prevent the leather clinging in putting the coat on. Usual four pockets outside, and inside a breast and two large “poachers” pockets. It answered very fairly well, but was neither quite as warm nor waterproof as we had hoped.”

I think it’s hilarious how something is described so well yet they come to the conclusion that the product is not very good πŸ˜€

Here is a another bit I like in the section about how to drive in town:

“Of course, drivers of all vehicles should observe these rules, but a good many do not, cabmen plying for hire being the worst offenders”.

“Pedestrians are allowed to walk where they like on a road provided they do not unreasonably obstruct other traffic.”

The end of the book has various adverts that are really a far cry from today. One of the most controversial has to be this one for your own personal safety when being out and about in your vehicle. Overall this book to me is priceless, it’s amazingly relative in some aspects of motoring today though mostly on the principles of physics, but the lifestyle and culture is very different making it so interesting. There are sections on touring, going on holidays etc. which are quite funny to read as well as giving you a vivid picture of what driving was like back then. A must read for the automotive enthusiast !

Online Test 153: Knowledge of removing and replacing light vehicle electrical units and components


We’ve only had about three weeks of lessons on electrical then we ended up sitting the exam sooner than expected. To my surprise it was not so hard after all, and got 90% this time. I did most of my revision on alternators, starter motors and batteries but I think only three questions came up for those, and most of the others were on circuit symbols, ohms law and electrical vehicle components such as wipers and adaptive headlights. My word of recommendation for this test is know your electrical symbols such as transistors and diodes, as well as some sensor types like inductive and hall effect along with oscilloscope waveforms. Just one exam left now and that will be transmissions, drive systems and clutches which I expect to be the most tricky…

East Kent College: Table Tennis 2015 Result


Here is the review poster I done for the recent table tennis tournament. I did enter the competition and kinda went out in the first round, possibly because I didn’t practice at all but I’m getting better now haha. It was a good tournament though and is extremely popular at college. Next is the Pool tournament that has kicked off last week and I’m entered in that also to play next week ! Thanks to Julian for getting some photos sorted cause I had no camera with me at the event final oops !

East Kent College: EKC Fest 2015 Survey

The surveys are out !

With the end of college year festival less than two months away it was time to start finding out what people would like at the event. I setup two themed voting boxes for the Canteen and Student Center along with a survey for students to submit. We kept the survey quick and easy with Yes/No tick boxes for our event ideas, and students could state at the bottom if there was something else we should consider for the event.

We took the votes in yesterday and the Rodeo Bull Simulator came out on top with 22 votes, closely followed by the Ice Cream Van, BBQ and DJ entertainment. I have the DJ booked but we are also hoping to book a live band as well. I need to hire a platform stage of some sorts for the band which I will hopefully sort out next week along with booking the ice cream van. Thanks to everyone who took part in the survey !

Level 3 Preview, 157: Knowledge of Diagnosis and Rectification of Light Vehicle Engine Faults


I was randomly set some test questions for a taste of what’s to come at Level 3 because I had literally nothing to do in class the other week. I really guessed these pretty much and got a result of 60%, though I’m usually better once I’ve had some lessons. I think the tests will be okay next year just a lot more technical which is good though.

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East Kent College Work Experience: Easter Break Pt.2


The weather was so nice today, I was tempted to wash the Mondeo which has been covered in bird poo but I still got some more important stuff to do. In the two tech/theory classrooms we have done some moving around to optimize the space more along with improving the overall presentation. Above used to be where the whiteboard and projector was setup but now we have setup a display wall here along with making this end the place for displaying all the vehicle components.


Before everything was just bundled onto shelves or left in bits, but now everything is categorized to be understood better and generally easier to look at. Above is two turbochargers and a supercharger for this display on forced induction. I’m rather OCD about this kind of thing as you can probably tell, and I have put every part facing a certain way so it looks pleasing on the eye. I guess someone will mess it up eventually but it looks good for now…


The other side is also a lot neater, each shelf now has all the similar components situated together. The obvious things you can see are the cut tyres, exhaust parts, clutches, intake plenums, batteries etc…


The transmissions are damn heavy, so they are staying on the floor !


Down the other end of the class is a small table which had way too many bits on it, but now it’s much more tidy and finally the rotary engine is back together. The smaller rotary model is an NSU variant, and stamped on it says ‘made in West Germany’ so pretty old like many of these old display models. Out of shot we also put another display board up in this corner, oh and that stop button does not work if you was wondering πŸ˜€


In the other class which is mainly a computer room is this cabinet display, well it was probably a cabinet fifty years ago but all the door runners seem to be missing now. Before this was a complete state, one shelf would be empty then the next full of random components all completely different. I think it looks much better now and everything is much clearer to see and use.


Save Adult Education


Being 27 at college it’s important to keep in the loop with how funding is managed now and in the future. This post is to help spead the awareness of proposed cuts to further education for adults. This extract is taken from #LoveFe

‘We note the decision of the government to cut the English adult further education budget for 2015/16, once funding for apprenticeships is excluded, by 24%. This enormous cut in funding will decimate further education provision, leave millions of the most vulnerable adults without access to any opportunity to improve their education or retrain and put thousands of FE jobs at risk. We call upon the government not to implement these cuts and to instead invest properly in lifelong learning opportunities for all.’

You can make a difference and sign the petition here:

Thanks, Kenny.