Saturday, January 28, 2012

Looks a bit like a car now...

 Well, it looks a bit like a car if I put the bonnet and nosecone on, anyway.

My white board's got a long list of jobs to do before completion. Each day I cross a couple off, and about add another four that I've just thought of.

There's a lot of dependencies, and at the moment almost everything is waiting for me to get (1) the cage fitted properly, and (2) the fuel filler. The cage bars need to be spread a bit and pushed down before I can get the front bolts in.  The fuel filler is an absolute pig to line up properly with the hole in the rear panel - I think a large amount of brute force and a minimum of mechanical sympathy is needed.

My brother's coming down again tomorrow, so we'll see if we can get those sorted.  And the brakes, because they scare me a bit. 110 mph into the Pembrey hairpin is not the right time to discover you've done something wrong with the brakes (is it, Gareth?)

Only other major job is fitting the seat. I've finally bought a Tillet rather than creating my own foam or bead seat.  Partly because I think it might give better lateral support than the bead seat did (when you're skinny, it's easy to wrap a custom seat round you.  When you fill most of the space, it's not so easy). And partly because I thought it would save time.  But it turns out that fitting a Tillet is quite an effort as well. I got it cheap off ebay, if I don't like it I'm sure I can get my money back later.

After that, all the jobs are fairly small - there's just a lot of them.

At work my department has just been reorganised, so I need to head over to California to meet my new boss and new team members, so that's a couple of weeks removed from the schedule. So I need to get cracking and try to cross off more items from the whiteboard list than I add to it.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

That's not good!

While reconnecting all the engine stuff, I noticed that the ECU water temp sensor wire is hanging on with barely a couple of threads:

It's a specialist connector, not something you can get at Polevolt or the like. And that's breaking too close to the connector to easily solder a new bit of wire on.

Looks like it's off to ebay to buy either a complete Rover engine harness, from which I can rob the right connector and splice it in, or there's one guy who will sell individual connectors - just waiting to see if the harness he's getting them from is the correct one or not.

If all else fails, I can use a couple of 2mm female spade connectors, which seem to fit reasonably well into the other side of the connector, but it's a nasty bodge of a solution.

Monday, January 09, 2012

The engine is in

Thanks to a marathon day where Big Brother did all the work, and I handed him spanners at appropriate moments, we now have the diff, gearbox and engine all in roughly the right places. More soon...

Wednesday, January 04, 2012


Not a lot of progress over Christmas, I've sorted the new fire extinguisher and all the cabling and hoses for that, but I've been mainly sorting out the electrics and the new dash layout.

I'm pleased with it, but it's been a lot of work to get it all wired up properly and working.  The Dash2 digital dashboard is mounted on an angled bracket, so it faces directly towards me, and can be slid up and down by half an inch or so for optimum positioning.  The other two gauges are a mechanical oil pressure gauge, and a traditional clock (yes, device for telling the time!).  The clock had to be wired with a dual supply, so it's powered off a 9V battery when the FIA switch is off, but from the unswitched 12V supply otherwise.

Lots of hiccups along the way, mainly due to having to order new connectors and stuff, but also upside-down switches, connectors that mysteriously disconnected during fitting, and me getting the unfused unswitched 12V supply confused with the fused switched 12V supply, and so on.  And lots of scary drilling of holes in the dash, the bulkhead and the scuttle.

I was just ready to put it all back together with the scuttle in place, when I discovered the wiper motor assembly I have is wrong.  This dates from my car being a "donor supply" after the crash at Pembrey, and me lending my wiper motor to a mate. I then bought a secondhand one, which he paid for, which I was going to fit. Only it's wrong - the wiper drivers are two close together and don't fit in the holes in the scuttle top. Oh well...

My brother's hopefully coming up again at the weekend. With any luck we'll get the rear suspension all fitted and the engine in.  Then it's almost done ... isn't it?