Rust be gone! I hope…

It’s 8am as I start to type this. I’m onto coffee number 4 already. Well, it’s instant stuff and I’m using two spoons of granules per cup. Does that make eight cups of terrible coffee? I dunno and the wizard behind me is telling me to stop typing rubbish and hurry up with this entry so we can go and ride the magical sand dragon together. I’m getting a bit fed up of it to be honest, he’s getting very demanding these days since he bought his new staff with some inheritance.

I’m hopefully done with all the welding, woohoo! Although I’ve said that before, so shhhh. The chassis needs work but it’ll last until next year, hopefully longer. I’ve no reason to look over other bits of the car now either so shouldn’t find any more rot. In fact, there’s nothing else to check! I think…

Other than the boot corners the major rot was where the boot floor bolts to the chassis. It was bad. Very bad. The only option I had was to rip it out and see what happened. So I took some measurements, wrote them on the car over the primer already on there, braced the tub with wood then got cutting.

For a bit of fun and curiosity I removed the wooden brace and the boot floor never moved which I’m guessing means I was wise and I’ve done a good job of getting the other holes filled and solid before doing the boot? You can’t buy repair sections for the boot floor so I used the old bonnet to make very simple repairs. It’s rough, but it’s ready.

I’ve just got some paint on it this morning. It’s not very pretty, the wise will spot the double skinning has gone from areas I’d repaired and I don’t care. No spots welds, it’s all seam welded and more importantly it’s solid. I’ll get some more paint on it later.

Hopefully it’ll last a little while before I can find a new rear tub, the funds for one and the motivation to do it. It’s had so many repairs now that there’s hardly anything original left! In fact, if you look you can see previous weld repairs from the previous owner – they’ll be the pretty ones. Yep, I should have cut them out so I only had one repair line. Nope, I don’t care. I didn’t have the time to do a “proper” job, it just needed to get done. It’s a bit like a car fiddled with by English Heritage now as well, you can see all the previous work. It’s a Grade Turd listed car. Also notice the terrible colour match from what was meant to be the correct paint and paint reaction I’ve got to sort out. Brilliaaaaaaaaaaaaaant!

Ok, other stuff. The speedo got damaged and ended up with it’s needle pointing straight down so I decided to strip it all. Turns out it wasn’t needed as it’s an interference fit and just needed moving round but I now know how its internals work which will help further trouble shooting. A bit of knowledge for five minutes work is always ok with me.

This also got me thinking, can I make my own gauges? So I put some rice onto boil then fired up the scanner. One tasty dinner and a very quick flap with a scalpel later and I had the following.

I’ve decided it’s good enough to at least keep tinkering with. Others who have seen it in the flesh like it as well. A job to explore later me thinks so it could get interesting.

I also finally finished painting bits in the engine. I’ve rotated the injectors so the plugs are easy to get to as well and I’ve learnt more about the engine. Again, it’s all knowledge I’m gaining to help me in the future. Plus it looks perdy. I’ve left the throttle body as a horrible dirty mess as it’d be a bugger to strip down just to paint and I’m lazy.

It’ll be interesting to see how many air leaks I’ve created….

Mostly rust and something shiny

So when installing my boot light and what not I noticed a small rusty patch in the boot and decided to get jabby with a screwdriver. The holes got a touch bigger but nothing which worried me. The petrol tank didn’t really need to be removed to fix them but whilst I had the welder out I thought I may as well repair the wheel arches which the tanks does have to come out for as you have to get to bolts to remove the rear valances. This is where it got interesting! The boot floor bolts to the chassis in two places on the floor pan, both of which have strengthening panels. Yep, you guessed it, rotten. It’s going to be an interesting repair as the rear body tub needs to come off to do it really but I can’t be arsed! It’ll have to come off later to replace some chassis bits I’ve already got but I don’t want to do that job just yet. I’m also discovering that everything I’m repairing or replacing has been don’t be a previous owner in the past.

Doesn’t look too bad, pretty small really.

Until I poked some more and decided I needed to remove this lot. That’s a small portion of what’s been cut out. I even found the inner wheel arch on one side wasn’t attached to the body in places so I’m happy I went over the top with the screwdriver.

So, you get the gist… Since fitting the Mazda engine I’ve had a slight smell of petrol from the car and I think I found out why as I was doing all this. It appears that it was leaking at the return to the tank which will be an easy fix. But to make sure it was only that and not a hole in the tank I present to you my method of tank pressure testing!

As this was all going on I thought I’d have some quiet time so took the rocker cover off to paint it, resulting in one sheared thermostat housing bolt. Yes, I’ve painted that as well. I’m not after a super amazing finish, just something nice. As said, that’s the whole point of the car. Nice, usable, fun but deffo not a show car and rough edges are more than fine! This is how it is right now, rattle can finish is good enough for me! Complete with one random dog hair which somehow floated on it when the top coat was wet.

And also had a quick run out with a couple of mates at one point as well.

Lows?

Low.

Sorry, pointless update but I’m happy it’s mobile. Even if it is just to turn it round for a quick de-grease and so I can weld up the boot. Although at first I didn’t think I could get any gears. Turns out I’ve got too much clutch movement so will have to make a stop for the clutch pedal. And someone has buggered up my speedo now as well so it rests at zero so I’ve got to fix that as well. Yay…

And here’s my diagnostics light working.