Building the Damn Thing !!!!
Once a Quickrack had been found the front suspension and steering linkages could all be fastened together. This wasn't such a bad job as the majority of things just bolt together. What did prove to be a problem was fitting the Quickrack itself. It might be difficult to imagine, but the steering rack has to be fitted to a steel bracket. This bracket forms the hypotenuse of a right angle triangle with the chassis. Everything was going fine until I tried to fit the bottom bolts. Then you realise that there is no room behind this bracket for the bolt let alone trying to find room for the nut to fit. It's all a big pain in the bum really, but it would have been nice if it could have been mentioned in the build manual. As the holes for the steering rack have already been drilled you first have to drill holes into the chassis rail below, perpendicular to this imaginary hypotenuse. It is then just a matter of trial and error to try and fit a bolt behind it. You will probably have to spend an hour or two enlarging the pre drilled holes just so you can get the bolt seated properly.
Making the brake lines and fitting them has been one of the easier jobs so far. Buy a pipe flaring kit and away you go. I would recommend practicing on a bit of spare pipe before you start the job proper, but on the whole making brake pipes was OK. There were one or two little issues, such as fitting a splitter at the rear axle and connecting a pressure switch to activate the brake lights, but once you have mastered the flaring of the pipe the job isn't too difficult. You do have to be aware of single and double flares. The type of flare depends on whether you are fitting the pipe to a male or female union. On the whole, if the end connector is male it will be a single flare, if the end connector is female it needs to be a double flare. If you want a better explanation, follow the link or search on google. Break Flaring Website
The real problem with brake lines is when you try and bleed them. I've tried very hard to get mine right, but when you are doing as much of this build as I am, on your own, it's not that easy. What you really need is one of those fancy vacuum brake kits, but as I wasn't prepared to sacrifice my first born, I've decided to wait till the car is nearly ready for the road and then I'll do them properly.
Rebuilding the Engine
This was one of the jobs I had really been putting off (along with making the wiring loom). Where do you start ? As it has been a few months since I had even looked at the car, some of the nice clean engine bits had gone a little rusty. Not serious, but enough to make it necessary to take a trip to the nice guys at Weir Street Engineering in Blackburn. The cylinders needed honing again and the crankshaft needed a bit of a polish, but other than that, not much else had gone wrong. The engine has actually gone together quite easily. Here's a list of all the new bits.
Looking at that list, it basically means the engine has had totally new internals apart from the crank shaft.
- Complete set of new bearings.
- New fast road high lift camshaft.
- New timing chain.
- New pistons.
- New rocker shaft.
- New push rods.
- Rocker arms refaced
- New water pump
- New oil pump
- Electronic ignition module
I've double and triple checked the torque on all the nuts and bolts. I spent hours gapping the valves as correctly as I could and trying to make as good a job as I'm capable of doing. I just hope that all the time and effort will pay off. Hey! I'm just hoping the damn thing runs !!!!
Fitting the Engine
Fitting the Ancillaries
This will include all the bits that make the car run, but don't necessarily connect to any of the major components. So far this includes stuff like the coil and the fuel pump.
I have decided not to go with the standard fuel pump on the crossflow engine as it is mechanical and driven off the cam shaft. In itself this is not a problem, but if I decide, in the future, to change the engine and go for something slighly more modern, I'll need an electronic fuel pump. So instead of worrying about fitting one at some time in the future, I have chosen to fit one now.