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30. Looking more like a car

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Remember this?

We have come quite a long way since!   Twenty one months ago, or thereabouts, this was what I saw in a field and decided it was the one!  It has been great fun and the reward is seeing the car gradually grow in front of me.

With more than a little help from my friends Ed and Roy, we have got to this.

Having read all the comments about how difficult it would be to mount the front body, and with the manual suggesting “make more space” if it didn’t fit (how do you do that?), the body went on pretty well.

A snag was the fuel filter which inevitably was in the wrong place for the body to be placed onto the chassis, but that was easily solved by cutting the pipe and running it slightly closer to the engine.

I fitted a smaller fanbelt and bolted the alternator lower, and despite my absolute conviction that the air filter would not fit below the bonnet – it does!

Bolting the body from inside the footwell was a problem, mainly of my bulk.  Next project I build, one of my grandchildren is going to be the one who goes inside and does the bolts up.  In between the gear lever, the handbrake and the dangling cables there is not much room!

Next job is finally drilling the holes for the switches and instruments. To do that the seat has to go in yet again – and at that point I can start the engine and check out the clutch, gears, accelerator and brakes.   My sincere hope is that everything will be ok in the engine compartment, because there is certainly no room for a spanner!!

Back soon….

29 and three quarters…

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Just wanted to confirm that I have fixed the demister.   The problem was in part, how to avoid fouling the wiper mechanism under the dash, and also how to fix the tube to the underside of the vents.

Problem one was solved by moving the vents as far back as possible within the constraints of the bracket holding the windscreen (solved another issue by drilling out the thread in the bracket and bolting through – much more convenient).   Problem two simply expressed is how to fix the tube without being able to get to the underside to do up the bolt.   Solution – drill a hole directly underneath to take a socket on an extension, hold the nut with bluetack in the socket and voila!  Just need to tape over the access hole and it all works.   Took ages to work out and no time at all to implement!

While working on the demister, I took the opportunity to scope out putting a pull switch on the handbrake.  This is necessary to be able to show when the handbrake is pulled up, and, for the IVA, to show that the brake fluid warning lamp works.  This requires a little bit of wiring – effectively to short the brake fluid master cylinder switch and therefore light the lamp, when the handbrake is on.

I also took the opportunity to fit a combined rear fog and reverse light.  It is LED and looks fairly discreet above the number plate.  Regulations from 2013 require that the rear fog light may be switched on when the headlights are on, and must go off automatically when the headlights are turned off; and then may not come on again until the fog light is switched on again.  

The intention is to prevent leaving the light being active again on returning to the car and driving off in fog free conditions.  Car Builder Solutions do an electronic box that handles the latching and unlatching of the circuit and I will be wiring that into the circuit.

I am also investigating making an inductive proximity switch that will latch on when the gear shift lever goes to the reverse position and then off again for any other gear.  This would then operate the reversing light automatically removing the need for another switch on the dashboard.  It also avoids the need for replacing the rear of the 2CV gearbox to a newer version that is capable of taking a proper reversing light switch.

Watch this space…

29 and a half…..

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Went back to the garage today to fit the demister.  Aaargh!  How I wish I had bought a LHD donor car.  Every now and then I get caught.  Today it is evident that if the demister tube goes from the right hand side there is room…..from the left it fouls the wiper mechanism.  More of windscreen off – new holes drilled and maybe I will be able to fit it properly over the weekend.

Yesterday was also a disaster, related to the demister.  The blower fits onto the bulkhead behind the dashboard in the area occupied on the other side by the washer. Again the shape of the tub is not consistent with setting the blower neatly; this resulted in my drilling an 85mm hole – in the wrong place.  The cutout disc is now back in the body secured by sikaflex and will be redrilled shortly, now that I have the correct 80mm router!  It should all be covered eventually.  However in locating the blower, I discovered the heater control could not stay where it is.  That now has to be relocated somewhere on the drivers side.

I hope the next blog will be more celebratory!

Oh!  I have fitted two new rear wheels and they do look good!  I am also looking at fitting a combined reverse and rear fog light above the number plate – convenient as the plate light is fitted below the number plate!

Don’t know about you but I am looking forward to number 30!

29. Update

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Someone (Toby) said more photos and less text  – ok.  This is really to record what I have done in the last couple of weeks – more to do but it really is looking more like a proper car.

Problems juggling the windscreen fitting and the wiper mechanism. First try put the wipers just slightly wrong allowing a gap between the windscreen and body – would have been very draughty.

First time mounting and the column grated on the tunnel. There was a bit to insert between the bracket and column; now fitted and steering is soundless!

Fuel pipe and cap went on ok.  But the IVA requires the cap to be tethered so I still have to create some sort of link inside the cap.  Work in progress…

Can’t afford to get this wrong!  The dials have to be easily seen when seated in the car; the switches either have to be in the exempt zone, or IVA acceptable which creates style issues.  Lower panel is temporary but gives me some control over the wiring and an ability to control from the cockpit before I drill irrevocably.

Not much to say here – water bottle installed!

Boot lid installed perfectly by Ed and Roy, while I played around with other bits.  Difficult job because there are no guides on the lid as to where the hinges go.

So all you have to do is stick bulbs in the lights and away you go.  One hour later having modified the interior of the lampholders to take the bulbs correctly, they worked.  Poor quality units!   (Ignore the number plate – no IVA or re registration yet!   But I needed to see where the number plate lamp went and whether it worked.)

Have very temporarily hung the front onto the car to see how it fits.  It doesn’t! I will need to go carefully in fixing it.  Before that however, I need to do a road test and check the engine over finally as with the front on I wont be able to get to anything.  I have serious concerns as to whether the air filter and alternator will fit under the bonnet.

Other jobs:-

Refit exhaust to take the end back further to the body. Lots of work, then re reading the IVA manual it might not have been necessary!

Checked all necessary bolts to ensure Nyloc nuts on them

Fit quick release steering wheel boss. Problems with bolting the wheel to the boss – one bolt failed and had to use my nutcrackers!

Permanently fixed wiring conduit in boot, conveniently bolted to the mudguard bolts.

That’s it for the moment.  More to come shortly – perhaps when it is less cold as the garage heater is not man enough for these temperatures!