Once I get everything researched and the last extraneous wiring out, I can start relooming it all by plugging it all in and routing it around components and through the wiring channels.
Tuesday, November 23, 2021
Thursday, October 28, 2021
The wiring harness just for the top of the engine is insane. I think it weighs about five pounds. And there's some stuff on it I am just not going to use anymore. Certainly the plugs related to the TGV (tumble generator valve) actuators and angle sensors, and possibly other things as well.
But to know what to take off and what to keep, I have to know what everything is, so I spent some quality time on it on the workbench.
But there were three plugs that had gotten unplugged earlier and not labeled. And with the engine accessories not installed at present, it's pretty hard to figure out what plug goes to what device.
The only way I know of to figure all this out is to go to the wiring diagrams, which is a nightmare in itself.
I started by pulling back the loom around the wiring a little bit and looking at the colors of the insulation.
Wednesday, October 20, 2021
I picked this off its temporary resting place (a folding table) with the engine crane and dropped it into the engine bay again. It looks pretty good in there. It's not bolted down, just resting in place, but it feels good to have it in its home.
But to get those cables routed so I can measure them for ordering the ones I really need, I have to route them up and over the engine and through the firewall, into the tunnel between the seats. And in order to get a good routing that clears everything else on the tunnel, I have to start dressing the engine.
There's a lot of stuff that goes on top to route around. Here, I have the starter and the clutch slave cylinder bolted up. After I took this pic, I also got the alternator about half faked up into place, but not quite done yet. I have some pieces on order to make that come together.
Then it's induction, I think. Oh, and a water pipe that connects the two halves of the block. And probably a bunch of other stuff, too.
Feels like good progress. Plenty more good stuff to come.
Wednesday, September 29, 2021
It's not a big change, and it's probably going to be completely hidden once the build is done, but it's a cool little extra bit that I like.
I will have pics of the trick shift linkage later on, I am sure.
Tuesday, September 21, 2021
This is a piece of angle iron, Clecoed to the frame. After I got this far, I reinstalled the aft firewall and transferred all the 1/8" holes to that, then enlarged all the holes in stages to 5/16" to take AN5 hardware.
I've also just realized that I goofed on the seat mount floor rails - I need to redo them to include an extension for the harness hip belts. And not a goof, I just haven't done it yet, but I need to fab up a mounting tab for the anti-submarine belt as well.
Saturday, September 18, 2021
With the welding completed on the transmission subframe, I painted all the raw metal in there to protect against corrosion. Not that the car is going to see water, but it's a good idea anyway.
I changed the angle on the steering column to improve the position of the wheel.
I have the seat temporarily installed (it definitely has to come out again, because there is lots to do in the fuel tank and firewall areas). It looks like I have room to move it back about an inch without conflicting with anything. I've also started planning for bracketry to brace the back of the seat. I could probably get away without this on the street, but it's recommended by the seat manufacturer and required by a number of racing classes, so I may as well go ahead and do it now.
And I started fiddling with the position of the shifter on the console. I need to weld some steel to the edges of the shifter's baseplate, so I will have something to drill holes in for bolting to the frame of the tunnel.
Wednesday, September 8, 2021
There's a bunch of other wiring here I just won't be using at all - cruise control and airbag.
The issue here it the large connector block at lower left - it conflicts with the adapter that the new wheel bolts to. The yellow wiring is for the airbag, so I just cut that away entirely, and then I removed the plastic shroud around the four other pins - even though I only need two of them for the horn.
I'm going to keep a box of all the excess wiring I remove from the donor harnesses. This car is going so have so many fewer switches and buttons in it than the donor that I should be able to remove some real weight.
Welding overhead is always the hardest, because when you melt metal, it wants to run downhill, like any other liquid - so it becomes kind of a challenge to get your bead to stay where you put it. If you goof up, it wants to fall off - and being under that is a good way to get droplets of molten metal on you. Not fun.
This was mildly sketchy, but not too bad. I'd have loved a real rotisserie, but this worked pretty well.
And, let's face it, it's going to be only a few inches off the ground when all is said and done, so I doubt anyone will ever look at it again.
And thus my goal is met to drop the tail end of the transmission by about three inches. This should mean a much longer life.
Thursday, August 19, 2021
It did fit, and here it is clamped back into the frame. This is when it really started to feel good.
Full props to those lights, though. Two of them were so good I went and bought some more. They make it a lot easier to see the weld as I work, even once I strike the arc and the helmet goes dark. Amusingly, with five of these pointed at the welding table, it was so bright that my helmet triggered before I even turned the welder on - I had to turn down the sensitivity so I could see before I pulled the trigger.
That bead on the left-hand side of the frame makes me very happy.
Once I finish out the welding, I'll hit the welded areas with some seam sealer and then rattlecan all the places I had to sand off the powdercoat.
Between the drop tabs and the new transmission mount, I should get right at three inches of drop at the tail of the transmission. Maybe even a touch more. And that's exactly what I needed to keep from burning up the gears.
Sunday, August 1, 2021
I need them to be the right distance apart, both side to side and fore/aft, and I need the top edges to be in the same plane. I decided to try 3D printing these little jigs, which I will position and screw to a piece of plywood.
The plywood board is clamped to the frame of the car. The blue plastic jigs hold the tabs. I've used the transmission subframe to get everything in position, with some clamps and spacers to help align everything.
I will next finish prepping the subframe and the tabs and get it all aligned, then tack it together and test-fit it in the car. I think it should work; then I can finish weld it, bolt it back to the bottom of the transmission, and tack it into the frame.
Sunday, July 11, 2021
In addition to that, though, I've been getting ready to weld up the dropped transmission mount. This is from the rear of the frame, looking forward. The chunk of frame that I cut out is bolted to the transmission; you can see the three inch drop, which should go a very long way toward solving the oiling problem.
I am going to work on fitting up the subframe between the tabs - it needs a little strategic grinding to fit. Then, with the frame bolted to the transmission, and the engine in the car, I will tack the tabs to the subframe. After that, I will unbolt the subframe and fully weld that up on the bench.
The hard part then will be welding the whole thing up to the frame.
Monday, June 14, 2021
First we hooked it up to the hoist, and unbolted it from the stand. Then we put it onto a table, sitting on a skid to keep it supported level, and installed the clutch and pressure plate. After that, we mated up the transmission and picked up the whole assembly with the hoiust.
This isn't the final position just yet, but it's close. Next up is to order new engine and transmission mounts, which will let me get it into its final spot
This feels like a really big milestone. It's going to come out and go back in several times, I am sure, but this makes it look and feel a whole lot more like a car.
Sunday, June 13, 2021
I'm still not a good welder. These are completely serviceable welds, but I won't win any prizes for consistency or overall beauty. But I am getting better. And that feels pretty good.