The last few weeks have been both seemingly less productive, and more boring. I have snatched hours when possible rather than spending whole days at the garage. So when asked how the car is coming on I generally wince and say nothing much.
But I sat down and reviewed what I have done. While there has been nothing sexy(?) or dramatic, I have done things. In part I have swollen ECAS’ profits by buying more bits and tools, and in part I have achieved a record Amazon shop with parcels arriving everyday for two weeks!! But mainly, I have done things ordinary and time consuming, but done!
Starting from the back of the chassis, I have cleaned out and bolted in the fuel tank and fitted a new fuel gauge sender unit. I have removed the rear drums (10 ft scaffold pole and 44mm wrench did the job easily) and removed the old slave cylinders, shoes and springs. I have painted the back plates and after a second coat will fit the new cylinder and shoes on each side; at that time I will be able to connect the brake pipes currently blowing in the breeze on each side of the rear axle.
Moving forwards to the front, I have fitted new shockers, and painted a second coat on the front axle. With both drive shafts gunked and cleaned up, I have fitted new gaiters (3 on each side!) and squeezed new grease into the UJs. I have also removed the track rod ends, checked the ball joints for wear (I think they are ok) and replaced the bushes and springs and gaiters.
A point to bear in mind if anyone is foolish enough to be relying on these posts for detailed help! The track rod ends need to come apart if new gaiters are to be fitted. They come undone only with a special tool from ECAS. The tool supplied is good at undoing but when doing up the new screwed ends I found it does not fit. I have used the old ones as they look in good nick, but I have some new parts now lying around if anyone wants them.
Reviewing the car objectively, most of the bits I have retained are in surprisingly good order. The axles have all been well greased and apart from the surface rust, quite clean; the brake shoes and discs are in reasonable nick, although for safety I am obviously renewing them. Given that the car was apparently in a field for 20 years aside from the body and chassis rust, the other working bits seem mostly salvageable. I am hoping the same will be true for the gearbox and engine!
I have had an opportunity to use my degreasing tank. Having assembled it some months ago but not tested it, I filled it with water, connected the power and switched on the pump to aid cleaning bits and pieces. Nothing from the pump; however the bits cleaned well in a fairly strong Gunk solution. Then it was necessary to empty the tank – 20 litres of muck. To cut an embarrassing story short, I now have a hose with an inline tap running from the drain hole into the drain ini the garage. May not be legal but it works, and nowhere as messy as when I first drained it. I have also serviced the motor which now enables the pump to work!
The front disc brakes are the next task. Currently they are disassembled although with seized pistons. I am hoping that my foot pump will push them out. The calipers look in reasonable condition and should clean up ok. Then the gearbox will have to be disconnected from the engine when Roy and Ed show up, to provide some heavy lifting.
As I have said before, I am hopeful that I will get a rolling chassis within the next few weeks that rolls, steers, suspends and brakes! That will be the time to think about the main part of the body going onto the chassis. It will also be the point at which the 200 euro reduction for receiving a LHD body for a RHD chassis may be recognised by me as a suitable reduction 🙂 Probably not…..
Winter is now with us and apart from dressing warmly, the heater is going full blast when I am in the garage to keep me warm; works ok now but I think some means of warming drinks is probably going to be necessary soon. Any one passing will be welcome to hot tomato soup on demand!
And that’s enough rambling for the moment. See you here soon.