Some quality metal work going on there.
Keep the pics coming
Is this what you want Sqweaka? - let me know if there is something specific you need. I assumed you referred to the steering damper/idler. This is an Armstrong damper fitted to a special Ballamy bracket so it is bolted in the LHD steering box holes and corresponds the action of the standard steering box drop arm. The damper has had some mods done to the valve to make it, I think, equal force in each direction. I have looked into it but dont understand it yet. Cheers, Dave
Last edited by Perfect65; 08-09-2013 at 07:36.
Last edited by Perfect65; 10-09-2013 at 08:00.
I have discovered the best way to keep moving forward with a car build is to start at the back and go from there and you can't go wrong. Well I did do the wiper motor and a few other bits first but I am on a roll at the moment and at last ready to take the engine out and finish the firewall, paint n all. I want to make a good job of this as we all like a well turned out engine bay. More pics and chat soon.
Engine is out and getting some paint on. Matt black (water base) inside the firewall as I will probably be sticking some foam stuff on it later. Satin black in the engine bay but the pedal boxes are silver (aluminium coat). Gloss chassis black on the chassis rails and cross members. Silver on the A-frame wisbone part and gloss chassis black on the axle beam. Idea is not to make it all the same colour so it has some appeal to those who like to peer underneath.
This is the engine bay view - looks rough as there were plenty holes to fill. In hindsight a new firewall would have been flatter but still trying to keep as much original metal as possible.
This is the inside. More pictures when the fixtures and fittings go in.
22nd october 2013.
Well the engine is back in and the master cylinders in place. I changed the brake master for one with a smaller size reservoir with a lean back to match the clutch unit as I am on drum brakes it should be fine. I also dug deep in the coffers and bought a pair of stainless steel master cylinder brackets. Just got to make up some brake lines. I am ordering a complete braided stainless flexible hose for the clutch.
I have decided to start getting the rear wings ready for paint. I already welded the flanges some time ago so now for some serious rubbing down, dent 'erasing' and filling. They are not too bad in general, at least they are metal and have a beaded edge arch. The person who had the wings before me had put lots of filler in some bad damage at the back and to help the filler stick had drilled lots of 3mm holes. I welded up the holes and knocked out most of the damage with just a smigeon of filler to make good. Pics to come later.
I had a reasonable set of bumpers but they were the later type fitted to post war cars. The earlier type had more pointy ends so out with the angle grinder. Luckily I had a spare 'project' bumper given to me some time back so it was used for practise. Pics to come later.
30/10/13 - And here they are. The bumper on the left is the standard later shape.
Can you see the difference, its not a lot but to the connoisseur....................
Now the exhaust system is back on I am wanting to get the engine running but will wait till the clutch is operating so I can check it has not stuck as its been standing for a few years now.
30-10-13. Got the clutch system piped, filled and bled out so wedged the pedal down with a wood block, put the box in gear and tried turning the crank by hand. The car moved forward on the ramps so tried the other direction and the clutch plate freed off - happy day.
Last edited by Perfect65; 16-12-2013 at 11:26.
Got a hickup with the front Ballamy suspension. It appears the axle beams are either bent or were badly welded in the first place. When it was all bolted in place the front axle beam pivots in the centre were out of line and to describe the amount I would say if they were lowered about 2" they would have lined up. The whole assembly is now off and a standard 'A' frame back in for the time being till I can ascertain what the problem with the Ballamy is. I thought it looked wrong as the wheels were canted out - sort of bow-legged look. I'll take some pictures soon to illustrate the problem and maybe one of you will be able to suggest the way forward.
I had a difficult start to my brake pipe making and fitting as the basic tool I had bought earlier was not gripping the Kunifer pipe. I later found the pipe was undersize and that was after buying a Sykes Pikavant tool that is much better anyway. I got over the undersize pipe by making a split tube from 2 thou steel shim and wrapping this round the pipe before inserting in the die. Thanks to Bone at Swifts Motorcycles Basildon for this tip as he had same problem and cured his with Bacofoil. Anyway, here is the first section done. Bone also suggested making a little tool to bend the tube round. He said get a piece of broom stick and turn a groove in it, a good fit on the pipe. I found a piece of tapered ally rod, a rejected wheel spacer from the Kawasaki, and used that and it works fine.
I am fitting a line lock to the front brakes as an additional handbrake. The valve will be engine side and the shaft will fit through a 25mm hole in the panel to make the handle accessible under the parcel (or junk) shelf. This will entail drilling and tapping the valve to take 4 x M4 screws and I will add a backplate in 1mm stainless to make it more rigid. Advantage of making a backplate is I can use it as a template when making the necessary holes in the panel. When the stainless braided hoses arrive I will be able to fit this on the pedal box deck, out of sight where the wife cannot find it - she may be tempted to do a few burnouts behind my back. Have you seen the U-Tube clip "No Woman No Drive"? - Brilliant.
Just tapped the 4 M4 holes in position as suggested by Guy/Bigyellataxi.
And below with the two backing plates screwed on ready to take to the garage for final fitting.
Here's the valve fitted, just visible on the right of picture.
Well, the system is now filled and air bled out. Trouble is there was too much pedal travel so I changed the 5/8" master cylinder for a 0.7" and it was better. I have ordered a 0.75" master cylinder so hopefully the pedal will have the right feel when it is fitted. There was also a bit of play in the clevis so with a new one it should be a lot better.
19/11/2013. The brake master cylinder is now a Willwood 0.75" bore unit and the pedal has good feel. There was an unusual problem with the banjo fitting on the master cylinder as it would not seal properly, even with aluminium washers. I checked the banjos and one had a discrepancy across the faces of almost 0.002". I contacted the suppliers, HEL, and they immediately sent a replacement and this has corrected the problem. Brakes all done apart from minor improvement needed to the cable handbrake although the hydraulic one works perfectly.
Little clip for the speedo cable.
And another for the clutch pipe.
Unusually, the Spitfire doesn't use a flexible hose between engine and master cylinder just a coil of of copper pipe much like used on vintage fuel systems. I think in time I will change this for a braided hose throughtout.
When I started doing the brake pipes I watched U-Tube clips and the demonstrators de-burred the pipe with a file. When I used to work as an instrument maker, a sort of production toolmaker and general do-it-all, I made this de-burring tool for a job and luckily it was still in the tool cabinet.
Now I am getting down to some detail work I decided to make some stainless nuts for the exhaust manifold, a little longer to be easier to get at and keep a spanner on when its time to remove them.
Last edited by Perfect65; 19-11-2013 at 12:52.
Before I took the engine out of the donor Spitfire, I had the engine running for a while as it had been mothballed for a few years. The engine was fairly quiet when cold but as it warmed up it had a slight tinkle on tick-over which went as it was revved. I started the motor yesterday for the first time in this car and the rattle was there but I thought even louder but as before it went as the motor was revved. It sounded to me like timing chain so off with the cover and there it was - a very slack timing chain and a tensioner showing signs of being fitted incorrectly. Sprockets out of line as the crank one was worn at the front and the camshaft one worn at the back. Also, the two bolts holding the cam sprocket on were loose. So its a refit for that department. Parts now ordered from James Paddock. This timing chain department seems very weak compared to the humble Ford sidevalve - simplex chain and no dowel on the camshaft sprocket.
Started the motor today - smooth and quiet and exhaust note just like a sporty pre-war car should sound like. Next - out with the tuning kit as it seems a bit on the rich side which could be partly due to the pancake air filters.
Today I reamed three of the door hinges, taking them out to 7.5mm from the original worn 9/32" size. New pins made from 14mm stainless rod but not fully driven home yet as I may need to remove the doors before I am finished. I would like to incorporate a way of lubricating the hinges without letting the weather in. Current thinking is a tapped hole in the centre section to fill with grease then fit a small screw to make it weather tight.
Stock fuel tank also replaced after a clean out and coat of silver paint and now connected to the front with nice shiny copper pipe. Hopefully will start on the roof fill next week. I am thinking I will need to make some roof bows as the ones from this car were used on a standard E93A I am restoring. These will need to be a bit taller anyway as the mini-roof doesn't have any wadding under it.
Last edited by Perfect65; 30-11-2013 at 20:39.
I did a small house clearance today and among the furniture was a pine bed base. Some of the frame would be the basis for the extra-tall roof bows so these have been put aside for a rainy or a cold day when I need something energetic to keep me warm. I've been thinking (again?) about the design of the bows and how I have found some that are split at the ends where they thin out. Perhaps I could slot my new ones and insert aluminium strip each end which would be fixed with screws right through to clamp up the aluminium.
12/03/14. Did another house clearance last week and I saw something that will sort the roof bows. have you seen those steel vertical channels that you screw to the workshop wall and are slotted to take shelf supports at whatever height you need. Well, there were some of these in the shed I was clearing and they look just right section to fit on the ends of the bows - say 4 o5 inch lengths - so they slip over the wood and make a strong end. Will try it and let you know.
Last edited by Perfect65; 12-03-2014 at 09:16.
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