I managed to get a couple of days on the car over the last month. First job was to fit the hand brake cable. I used a Sierra one that had to be shortened but used the original handbrake cable mounting braked to fit it to. MK Engineering provided a new eyelet end which made the job pretty easy. I also bought a pair of flexible hoses for the front brakes from Furore, made to measure and delivered in two days. These have been fitted completing the brake install, all ready to be topped up with fluid and bled, checking for leaks as we go.
The next big job was to start the wiring loom install. This is in multiple parts. The main section is the Premier Looms wiring loom that I had made to spec, added to this is the ETB and Omex flying looms for the dash and the ecu, in the engine bay is the Puma loom and finally a whole host of different switches, gauges etc. So, under the dash the various parts have been connected up with spade connectors so that any issues can be remedied easily. In the engine bay they are soldered to reduce the risk of corrosion/shorts etc. So as of today the vast majority of the loom is in and 75% is connected up, just a couple of issues with how the ecu is connected to the main loom for the fuel pump circuit and I need to look at borrowing a crimp tool for the main battery cables and earth straps. So hopefully a start up over Christmas is still on the cards.
Over the past few weeks going has been a little more leisurely due to family commitments but I have managed to get a few odd jobs done.
I made a start on the brake lines and have got all of the solid lines in. These are Kunifer (90% Copper, 10% Nickel)in 3/16" thickness with m10x1.0 fittings on all ends to match the calipers and brake master cylinder. I have cleaned up the copper with wet'n'dry and covered them in clear heatshrink wrapping. Hopefully this will keep them looking nice and also give them a bit of protection.
I have also started to lay in the power cables from the boot to the engine as I am re-locating the battery back to the boot. And finally started making the fuel lines (supply and return for injection system). Both of these jobs are still to be completed.
I have also made a start on modifying the exhaust manifold and planning the routing/rear box. I have cut of the exhaust manifold mounting flanges and done a quick trial fit and it looks like it will fit with a bit more work. In addition I have made up the mounting brackets for the radiator, fitted the the fan and got that mounts, all looks like to was made to be there.
Final set of jobs has been to install the door locks, look at how the window mechanisms go together (realising the parts I had bought had some bits missing and some unusable), and last but not lease start to make up a pile of trim parts that will need sanding down, priming and eventually painting body colour (ermine white).
This last month has also provided quite a bit of mental effort in designing the exhaust manifold flange and pipe/cable clamps, specifying the wiring loom and designing the fuel tank and a combination tank (radiator header, washer bottle and oil catch tank). These are all now out with the respective manufacturers and should start to be delivered in 3-4 weeks time. I have also bought some mini seat sub frames and runners and a better indicator stalk (the one that came with the car had overspray on it and the horn was sticky). So an expensive month but hopefully this is the majority of the large parts purchased and so I should have a fairly trouble free run into the end (famous last words!).
Just done a few odd jobs today. Fitted the rear brake caliper mounts using the bolts from Namrick, these seem to go OK and with the use of a couple of washers the calipers sit nice and central to the disc. Also gave the gearbox a coat of paint to freshen that up and prepped the gearbox mount for painting next week. Finally, fitted the new Alachi adjustable top mounts which included swapping over the bearing tops, re-drilling a couple of holes and then bolting them in. Nothing too strenuous but jobs that need doing. Will get the rest of the materials for the engine mounts ordered this week along with the remaining new brake parts, wheel studs, wheel nuts and some poly bushes for the steering rack and the anti roll bar. So still on track to get all of the rolling stock complete by the end of Christmas.
After a couple of weeks off following the marathon cleaning and painting session I managed to get out in the garage this weekend. So, now the car is fully clean and tidy (except for one little blemish on the drivers front wing) my attention turned to starting to re-install the mechanical parts of the car.
First up was the front axles, these hubs were put on, the bearings looked to be in pretty good order so just re-packed them with grease and then bolted them back together with new nuts and captive system. All runs smoothly with no wobble, grinding or tightness. I then put the uprights, anti roll bar, steering rack and TCAs back in the car to see what it all looked like and to start to get the alignment right (camber and toe).
All looked generally OK and except there is a bit too much camber for my liking. After a bit of a search it looks like the top mounts are Alachi 105e ones with added camber and caster. With my TCAs wound in right the way there is about 4 degs of camber - I was hoping for something around 1.5 degs. So after an exchange of emails I have ordered the Alachi eccentric fully adjustable top mounts, I can then re-use the bearings and circlips.
The rear end was then put back together, after much deliberation I have decided to stick with the 4.125:1 diff and see how it goes, I have tried a couple of times to get a 3.77:1 or 3.54:1 but with out luck or they were too expensive so I will wait for a while before deciding. The rear end went back together well using some spacers made from the old drum brake backing plates. I also decided to butcher the Caprisport caliper mounts to fit behind the axle case end flange. After much grinding (metal and teeth) they now fit. Just need some longer studs and replacement brake parts (disc and pads) and all of the running gear will be sorted.
With the running gear well on the way to being restored I turned my attention to a few small jobs. Firstly, I had a mate's Dad pop round to have a look at welding up some engine mounts, modifying the cross member (taking off the mounts) and possibly welding up an exhaust (Spencer Ashley kit). Second on the list was to re-build the pedal box, do an initial fit and mount the brake master cylinder, all goes in well. Thirdly, was to look at demist, I bought a couple of cheap 150w cigarette lighter socket powered demisters which I have taken apart and now have running off one set of switches (the plan is to box them up and use one each side through the screen vents). Finally, I sent off drawings and the OEM sump to have a new one built. Got the pictures back today, and it is looking very good. I initially was expecting a steel sump but Crapengineering who are making it has decided to go with aluminium and I have no problems with that. I am looking forward to getting it and seeing how it all fits together.
So, the next few weeks will consist of buying the final parts for the running gear, installing them, finalising the designs for the mounts and getting those made up. So, by Christmas I am hoping to have all of the running gear in and mounted. I can then start on plumbing, brake runs and finally getting onto the electrics.
Three weekends ago I finished off underside preparation by cleaning down the surface with a petrol soaked rag to remove the last of the underseal, wash with POR15 Aquaclean, wash with water, applied POR15 Metal Prep and carried out a final clean water wash down. This was then wiped down and left for a week to fully dry out. Then began the mammoth job of painting the rest of the underside, three days later and the whole of the underside had had two coats of KBS Rustseal, all seams sealed and a final coat of KBS Rustseal. So the whole process was -
I disassembled the rear axle, removed the diff and drive shafts, cleaned these, the 5 link bars, front uprights, brake brackets and front hubs. Painted all of these with Hammerite so they are all ready to re-fit once the paint has been given time to go off fully. I also trial fitted the rear disc brackets. Unfortunately the Caprisport brackets that bolt onto the outer face of the axle casing do not fit i.e. put the disc in the wrong place relative to the caliper (about 10-12mm out). After a measure up I concluded that brackets that fitted on the rear of the axle case flange were the once to get, so have ordered a set from Mk2mania.
I also ordered and received the adaptor plate for the throttle bodies from Lasermaster, looked a pretty good fit straight off but with a few slight tweaks and the bolt/stud holed drilled it looks like it will do just the job. Only job left to do it to get a larger countersink to further recess the bolts for the adaptor to head connection.
The final job on chassis prep, after finishing the painting last week was to bolt together the engine, gearbox and bell housing and do a trial fit so that I could get measurements for the sump, engine mounts and gearbox mount. It all looks pretty good and looks like I will have some good space around the engine for the throttle bodies and the exhaust. Following these measurements I have developed CAD models of the sump/block mating face and mounting plates for the engine and have sent the sump ideas off for a quote.
So I am now in a position where I can start to bolt parts back onto the car rather than take them off. Rear axle will be first, then the front uprights which I suspect will take a while to get into a position where the camber/toe etc is correct and then I can start of ordering the engine mounts and possibly the exhaust and whilst these are making their way here I can look at door cards and assembling the doors/seals etc. and finalising the designs for the petrol tank , radiator header tank, catch tank and washer bottle and working out the coolant system .
So, a couple of weeks in and I am starting to get sorted and also to spend a bit of cash.
Been doing a lot of measuring to work out what gearbox mount I need and whether/where the Type 9 will fit, just making sure all of the mounts are in the right position. I can confirm they are and it looks like the mounts are a standard Mk1/2 Escort item.
The Engine has been bought, paid for and delivered. It's a Ford Puma 1.7 Zetec SE (aka Sigma) with 88k miles on the clock and a recent cam belt change. The engine came with all of the ancillaries, wiring loom, ECU, gearbox, drive shafts, exhaust manifold and cat and a few other bits. (See pictures in Images section).
I have also had a play with the throttle bodies I had for the Mazda v6 (pair of triumph triple RS Sprint 955i ones) and contacted DanST Engineering about an adapter plate. It transpires that the TB outlets are almost identical to the head inlets and the spacing is about 1-2mm out which can easily be squeezed, result. So I have some preliminary drawings from DanST so will review before ordering those when I get the engine stripped down.
I have also contacted Tiger Racing about their SE>Type 9 bell housing, one I have a few critical dimensions I can then go ahead and order that. I found a new release bearing in the box of bits with again is a bonus.
Finally, after much deliberation I have gone simple with the brakes. A full set of discs, calipers, pads and fittings for an XR4x4 came up on ebay. I needed the rear calipers anyway whatever brakes I chose so to get the whole lot for less than one replacement caliper was a bargain. Looks like Capri sport do all the bits to fit these (GTR260 kit and Escort 14" rear solid kit) so will be on to them once they have arrived and I have done a trial fitting.
Still debating on what size wheels but that will wait for another day.
I put up a couple of photos of the front uprights on OldSkoolFords and it looks like they are Escort/Carpi ones (many thanks to Wilko), which is good as this opens up a few more brake choices. So, current plans for the brakes are -
Front - Wilwood 247mm x 20mm discs (Capri 2.8i origin I think) with 4 pot Forged Dynalite calipers
Rear - Mk3/4 Ford Fiesta solid discs and Ford Granada single pot calipers
Pedal Box - brake bias but will have to decide on mechanical or hydraulic clutch, would like to keep the mechanical but it depends whether the Type 9 will fit in the tunnel with this set up (standard)
Kits are available for these and this is a fairly well known fitting so should be easy to source/fit. This will be finalised once the body and suspension/axles are prepped and complete.
These will all fit under 13" rims, next job is to confirm they fit under a 5.5" wide rim and what ET I need to fit under the standard arches.
Father & Son Team
I'm a mid-life crisis sufferer who just had to have another project.