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Catch up 13 December 2009

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Well that was the last of the historical posts. From now on the updates will be further apart as I don’t work on the car that often.

I have painted the oil cooler so it is now ready for refitting. I may well leave the freeze plug as is, it’s not causing a problem and the cooling system is not pressurised so I think it will be OK. I’ll make a final decision when I go to refit the oil cooler.

I bought some more bits from the guy selling stuff near me. A pair of used rear wheel arch vinyl covers as mine are rotten, a pair of ‘D’ window seals, one new, one good used and a pair of clips for the jack handle in the boot. I also bought a drivers side armrest cover on Ebay. It was advertised as being in the original grain, but of course it isn’t. I’ll probably buy a vinyl repair kit and attempt to repair the armrest I bought and also use this new cover to repair the one currently fitted to the car, I’ll then see which one looks the better.

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Bleeding brakes 13 December 2009

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26th July 2009

I fitted the rear brake backing plates with the new gaskets. I just cleaned up the seal carriers and used them as is for the moment. I then connected up the brake pipe to the rear brakes and removed the clamp that had been on the flexible pipe for about 18 months. I left the joints loose for a week and found brake fluid oozing out when I went back to it today. For good measure I bled the rear brakes out with fresh fluid so they should be good to go now. Unfortunately the dripping brake fluid has taken some of the paint off so I’ll have to touch that up soon but otherwise I am about ready to refit the rear wheels at least long enough to tighten the castle nut on the axle end and then adjust the brake shoes so that they will be close to the inside of the drum as they should be. When disassembling the axle one of the torque rod bolts was very stuck and I used a blow torch on it. This slightly burned the rubber piece that locates the lower spring mount. I bought a pair of these rubber pieces on eBay and replaced the burned one today as well. I jacked the axle up and then put spring clamps on the spring, then lowering the axle again took the pressure off the mount enough to change it over. This was all a bit nerve wracking as I don’t like working with suspension springs under tension but went OK in the end.

Shims 13 December 2009

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10th April 2009

I have cleaned up the shims that set the end play on the rear axle. There are some either side and they fit behind the brake backing plates. I also cleaned up the spacers that go in front of the backing plates but in the process of removing the gaskets that sit either side of these spacers I damaged the paint on the backing plates. So I touched that up but now I need to get new gaskets. I also need to decide what to do about the seal carrier as they are a bit rusty, I’m just not sure what the best way of finishing them will be. Last week I continued on removing the insulating tape and then the braided cloth covering as well from the wiring loom that went to the generator. This loom runs from the generator, through the front bulkhead and along above the radiator before passing back through the bulkhead and back along the nearside wing, past the fuse box and on round to the starter motor. Curiously enough I found some disconnected wires in amongst the others. A couple of these could well have been to drive the second horn which seems to have been rewired at some point using additional wires. I’ll join those horn wires into the harness to make it a bit neater there. I think I’ll use cable ties to keep it tight around the points where wires join/leave and then the spiral binding to keep it neat.

Grit in my eye 12 December 2009

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31st December 2008

Progress has been slow as usual but it has been happening. The rear axle is back under the car and the trailing arms and torque rods are connected. While doing this I decided to redo the paint on the panhard rod mount on the body. I only managed to get one coat of hammerite on it before I got some grit in my eye. By the time that was sorted out it was too late to put a second coat on immediately and I have to wait six weeks for the first coat to cure properly. With the cold weather I am probably going to give it a bit longer as well. I had given up on getting an alternator bracket from Scandcar so I bought an IPD version from eBay, whereupon Scandcar got back in touch and sent another bracket which has now arrived. So I now have two alternator brackets to choose from. The IPD version is the nicer of the two so I’ll probably go with that one.

Freeze plug 12 December 2009

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24th August 2008

I should have mentioned that while cleaning up the manifold gasket surface that I noticed the freeze plug on #2 cylinder does not look particularly secure. It is at an angle with one edge practically coming out of the boss. I prepped and painted the axle tunnel over the last couple of days which is a great relief. All that exposed metal was making me quite anxious.

Insecure freeze plug

Splashes 23 November 2009

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8th May 2006

Well it rained on Saturday but I did manage to get the car out for a short ride on Sunday. The fixed seats are great; I am no longer straining my neck to see over the front of the bonnet. More rust removed and replaced with splashes of grey primer. I am going to have to get a full respray done I think as I am realizing that all the paint is in fact beyond salvage. I am just a bit reluctant to do it yet as that will mean taking it off the road while I remove the exterior trim and lights, bumpers etc. There is plenty of evidence of a respray being done in the past and I think something went wrong with it. I may try and get it done over next winter.

Splotches 23 November 2009

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5th May 2006

I have not been able to do very much recently. I had another session of rust removal so there are more splotches of grey primer now. I also managed to uncover some body filler which maybe the sign of lurking horrors. I also have some new screws and nuts to hold the grill surround on with although that took some trial and error. The screws are stainless steel so I hope they will last a while. I’m hoping to be able to get out for a drive tomorrow.

Going up in the world 23 November 2009

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Passenger seat before fixing

Driver's seat after fixing

14th April 2006

I got the seat support kits fitted with some help from someone on the 1800 list. They took some careful alterations and additions in order to get them to work well. I refitted the seats in the car today and although I have not driven it yet I did notice that I could no longer see the back window in the rear view mirror let alone see through it. It has obviously improved things no end. I also started attacking the paint work but did not get very far as my drill battery ran out of charge very quickly. I have a paint stripping disc that I am using in the drill, it seems to work quite well. I just hope that the drill is up to it.

Defeated, at least for the moment 23 November 2009

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10th April 2006

The seat support kits that I ordered from the states arrived on Friday and I tried to fit them on Sunday. Unfortunately they have defeated me so far. All the wires that attach to the side are the same length and as the seat narrows from the front to the back, they end up being too tight at the front and too loose at the back. I’m checking with the supplier to see if I’m doing something wrong or if my seats are unusual. In the meantime the seats are stuck by the radiator in the sitting room. I also removed the grill and surround in preparation for some rust removal and repainting. There is a patch there that had some generic white paint slapped on and it is showing rust coming through. Some more tools came up on eBay from an 1800 toolkit but they sold for ridiculous amounts of money.

Film 23 November 2009

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18th March 2006

I managed to find an excuse to take the car out for a little spin last weekend as well as today. I’ll have to get new front tyres soon as the ones on there are cracking a bit from age and sun I think. For the insurance to get agreed value cover I have to provide some photos taken on a 35mm camera as digital ones are not acceptable. So I bought some T-cut and today I removed the worst of the rust stains from the driver’s side where rusty water from the doors had left tracks on the paintwork. I also dug the hub caps out of the garage and put them on. Then I had to dig out my old SLR and put a film in it. I finished the whole film on the car so I could send it off for developing. Unfortunately as it is real film I can’t put the photos up here yet to show it in its present state. Most of the paintwork is still a mess, rust bubbles, chips and assorted marks and the bumpers are still rusty. Speaking of bumpers I got a set from eBay that are actually correct for the year. They need a fair amount of work to sort them out before fitting though as they are also pretty rusty and they had to use a gas torch to cut the bolts off to get them apart. I also bought a pair of door mirrors and fog lamps from eBay. I know I should finish off sorting out the paintwork and the engine before I do anything else but I’m a sucker for a bargain.