Home Stretch

There is still a lot of work needed, but I feel I'm on the home straight now. I need to remove the front wings, front panel, running board, rear wings and rear valance to prep and paint. But not yet!


I fitted the front indicators. I measured each side exactly and marked the wings the put the indicators in place and it did not look right! So I positioned them by sight, they look fine, go figure!

Indicators fitted
Indicators fitted

I have given the instruments a great deal of thought. Do I buy new/retro dials/gauges or what? I decided to stick with the Sierra instruments, for now, to make it easier to get through IVA (nothing needs recalibrating), but modify them to fit behind a plywood dash panel. I cut the plywood panel to fit the fibreglass Beauford molding, cut the instrument pod down and made a new perspex front for it. I can get some decent instruments and replace the dash later when its on the road. The centre console has been mocked up.

N/S bonnet side fitted
N/S bonnet side fitted

I spent all afternoon fitting the the O/S bonnet side. I can't believe it took so long to fit two hinges and 13 rivets! It's an awkward shape and not easy to handle. I've just got to fit the N/S now, but at least I know how I fitted the first one, so it shouldn't take me as long (providing I don't cock it up). I've fitted the N/S bonnet side as well now.


As I can't work on the passenger side in the garage, while the weather's good I've removed the front wing and running board to trim the edge and prep them for painting. Also trimmed the bottom of the body panels. The only thing is it gets dark early now, it's hard to trim fibre glass in the dark.

I've basically been filling and sanding, sanding and filling, filling and sanding, I must be getting somewhere, but at the moment it just seems endless. The dust is getting everywhere, leaving a white layer on everything, it's going to be difficult to get any painting done until I've cleared it up - another day!


I removed the protective film off the bonnet panels today, it does look good, whether that's just because it's the only part of the car not under a layer of dust I'm not sure. 

I've cleaned all the dust off and finally started to do some painting! Started with the fibre glass body in front of the windscreen then discovered it needed a lot more prep, so more sanding and filling. It's a little demoralising having to remove everything to paint it.

I've finally put a base coat on the whole car (except the radiator surround) and put the wings back on. I just need to start all over again, flatting the paint back and another coat of paint.


I've been working on the luggage rack because the rear bumpers are bolted to it. The Beauford one although looks good makes the car just too long, so I've had to fabricate my own. I've got the rear bumpers on and the garage door closes... just. Of course I'll have to make my own trunk to fit because the Beauford trunk will be too big again.

The window winders are Astra rear winders, they have to be extended by 40mm. The doors are marked with the location of the winders, but if fitted as marked they would not close the windows. If I just angled it upwards it caught the glass when winding down. So I cut the arm and extended it, when welding it back together I angled it about 30 degrees up. I also flattened the mounting bracket slightly. I fitted them in the doors, using small bolts with locking nuts. Awkward to get at, but I didn't want to use pop rivets in case it needs to come out sometime in the future. 


I cut out and mounted the instruments some time ago and also the opening for the glove box, so I needed to make the glove box to go behind. This I did with fibre glass, after first making a mould out of plastic milk cartons. I've lined it with black carpet and it looks reasonable, at the moment I'll probably only use it for gloves because its not lockable.


My wife assisted me in bleeding the brakes, I discovered that I hadn't tightened all the unions! Brake fluid was leaking out from several joints, they're sealed now and there is pressure in the system. Until I get the car running I can't test them properly.


For what I've been working on next refer to The Electrics pages.