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Painting yesterday...... and today.  Still another coat needed :sad:

Found another hole in the floorpan - but small (so far) and accessible.  Also found that the main front-to-rear brake pipe is rather rusty where it goes through the outriggers.  I'll be changing that for kunifer..........  And while messing with brake pipes......... anyone know what the correct route is for the brake pipe that links the two rear brakes on a rotoflex flex Vitesse.  Mine has been running directly above the diff - and rubbing on it :blink:, so would like to correct that also.

We have also made (Chris) and welded in place (me, and it was a right bloody mission!) two tapped blocks.  These are for future attachment of a H frame - once I've made one and something to attach it to.  Match the style and position of Spit/GT6 ones.  Something much easier to do on a bare chassis!!

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Nick

I think the brake pipe plumbing is basically the same as the GT6 roto at the back.

Grovelling about under the other car I managed to take these. Not brilliant but hope they'll help.

I now stink of old hypoid!! :yucky:

20200505_160925.thumb.jpg.31d61babe9281360d3896305777bb535.jpg

20200505_161200.thumb.jpg.9ce95e5de531de2f4d5a1e478517ae8e.jpg

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Appreciate the effort! :smile:

I had the same problem with the GT6, but did in the end identify the route and the holes for the clips......

P1190331s.jpg

Trouble is, the Vitesse geography is somewhat different in this area and as my tub is non-roto in original there are no clues.  I think I ran the existing pipe the way I did as I was working from a set of made-up pipes, which weren't necessarily for a roto Vitesse!  If there was an embarrassed smiley.......... :blink:

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Some pottering today...... I'm waiting for various things that still aren't arriving..... So prepped a set of studs for the diff.  I have quite a few but many are showing signs of old age and a hard life.  Also took advantage of the body being raised to  clean up the threads in the boot riggers.  Especially on the tank side.  Access to the two bolts under the tank is very restricted so being able to wind them in by finger tips will save about an hour!

Then I got the hoover out to see how much trash I could get out of the main chassis rails.  I can see it through the drain holes......  So, hoover nozzle against the drain hole, bang on the bottom of the chassis with a rubber screwdriver handle..... and then there was another hole.  Bugger. :pinch: Same story on the other side..... :sad: Poo!

Out with Mr Grinder...... ever wondered how much gak there is in your chassis?

P1190896s.jpg

:ohmy: Strewth.....

P1190897s.jpg

Seems to be dried out waxoyl mixed with mud/dust - which finds it way in through the unsealed boot-riggers.  I knew about this and took steps to prevent it when I built my Herald by sealing the holes and end of the boot-riggers.  That knowledge came from poking around in the particularly gruesome remains of the old Herald chassis - which was after I built the Vitesse.  I did waxoyl it, though only with a crappy pump-up sprayer, and I now know there are better things than waxoyl!

In fact, the rust is pretty localised.  You can see the tracks where it has run in from the boot-rigger (bottom of old section in below pic)and pooled in the lowest point - which isn't where the drain hole is.  From the drain hole upwards the original paint (dip etch) is still there.

TP1190899s.jpg

Anyway, patch made and chassis prepared.  It's 1.6mm so at least I can turn the welder up a bit.  Hope it's in a better mood!

P1190900s.jpg

This is the LH.  RH looks a bit worse as it extends further rearwards around the (redundant) lever arm damper bracket.  

50 + years....... first weld due to rot..... could be worse.

 

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1 hour ago, Nick Jones said:

seems to be dried out waxoyl mixed with mud/dust

Hello Nick 

                   I pump waxoyl into Spitty every winter in the hope it lasts another year(and it is cheap and easier than welding!)

Roger

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On 5/5/2020 at 3:28 PM, Nick Jones said:

We have also made (Chris) and welded in place (me, and it was a right bloody mission!) two tapped blocks.  These are for future attachment of a H frame - once I've made one and something to attach it to.  Match the style and position of Spit/GT6 ones.  Something much easier to do on a bare chassis!!

sitting inside my Herald looking at the wiring I was thinking about your idea of the H frame. Behind the steering column is a nice tubular support that goes from the column thru the frame to a bracket under the windscreen.

Once  its tight it is very stiff. If the metal support that runs under the dash was made stronger then I think it would help to stiffen everything up.

Unfortunately there is no bracket under the screen on the LH side just a flimsy bit of steel self tapped into the bulkhead...

a couple of pics below.

Mike

dash support lh.JPG

dash support.JPG

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Roger, you are right of course. I used to know a gentleman who considered that the best place for the spent oil from each oil change was in the chassis rails. His cars were very sticky underneath - but not rusty!

Mike, yes, thinking along the same lines. Simple, lightweight triangulated frame behind the dash, picking up on the dash frame mounts on the a pillars and up under the screen frame. Not keen to pull the dash though. That risks serious escalation........ though the dash panel badly needs love (replacement really).

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Looks like a solid chassis. Welded up a couple over the years, and they can rot really badly around the diff area. The chassis without the drain hole fair a lot worse.

Like the idea of the H frame. Should help stop the front tub flexing backwards when latching down the soft top.

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When I was a child my Dad was into his cars and after various Minis, Fords, etc, went through a bit of a Swedish phase for a number of years starting with a Volvo 122 Amazon, followed by a Saab 96 and then a 99.

This would have been mid 1960s to mid 1970s or so but I remember that the official service schedule for the Saab 96 included taking the used oil drained from the sump and painting on the underside of the car as a rust preventative.

I understand that there are likely to be various breakdown products in old engine oil that are not particularly good for the car (or people for that matter), but I still use a 30/70 mix of new mineral engine oil and Waxoyl for spraying into chassis cavities. It flows better into spaces and doesn't seem to dry out as quickly as neat Waxoyl.

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Thinking on the subject of reinforcing the dash to bolt in an H frame to al la Spitfire.

Rather than trying to work in behind the dash, could you bolt in a bar between the A posts at the level of the bottom of the dash and then bolt the H frame to that.

It would be a lot simpler and just as stiff and makes it a lot easier to take out if you want to work in the car.

Now I have taken the front roll cage and crossmember out of the Spitfire so I can fit the parcel shelves back in, etc  I had thought of something similar for it. Only issue with this is that the crossmember would be about 4" lower and a bit concerned about proximity to legs!!

This wouldn't be a problem with the Herald/Vitesse.

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Yes, that’s part of it, though straight doesn’t quite work. I still think there are big structural benefits to triangulation to the upper bulkhead. There is room.

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Returning to chassis repairs......

Cut out the RH side.  Nearly twice as long the LH.......

P1190903s.jpg

Again, only localised holing.  And much less gak.  I think because I was less successful getting waxoyl in there all those years ago.
Scary big hole, but solid, full thickness edges.

P1190904s.jpg

Shot looking rearwards inside the hole showing the end of the boot-rigger poked in there.  There was a bottom to the outer C..... once.  I removed it's rusted remnants.

P1190906s.jpg

I hate welding upside down....... LH

P1190909s.jpg

................ & RH, nearly finished

P1190908s.jpg

Ran out of time so tomorrow will finish welding, dress back, fill any holes, dress back, paint and flood with Dinitrol.  Hopefully the postman may bring brake pipe fittings and fuel rail fittings tomorrow too.

 

 

 

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After two hours of pulling up spring nettles and scragging some more of next doors brambles I ventured into the garage.

Tidied up the welds, zapped up a couple of bits I'd missed and couple more bits of porosity and tidied again.

LH

P1190911s.jpg

RH

P1190910s.jpg

Now painted.

Also zapped up the small hole in the floor.  Welding done.  I hope!

All the brake pipes are steel and all are 30 years (or more) old.  The two running to the back plus the one on the bulkhead were looking a bit suspect.  Also the routing of the rear one transverse one is clearly wrong as its been rubbing on the diff.....  I'm part way through renewing them with kunifer.  Was planning to renew the Goodridge flexihoses - or the actual hose sections anyway.  However, the garage goblins have stolen the hose...... total existence failure...... also two spare heater valves (plastic VW ones) needed to make the Spit water-tight again- vanished.  We did find a few things I'd forgotten I had while searching, and some things I swear I've never seen before.  Most odd!

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Posted (edited)

Don't talk to me about garage gremlins!    

I had a happy afternoon yesterday, liberating an item from an electricity junction cabinet at the end of my road.  The Electricity have just installed manholes instead and condemned the old boxes.      But I had to make a tool to get inside the box at the locks were sealed by threaded brass plugs, that took two pins to turn.  After measurement and trying to size, I made up a length of angle iron with two small bolts that made it easy.     I got the rest of my kit together for the job (Grinder, drill, floor cloth, tape etc. etc, and went back to the bench to pick up my tool.  And it wasn't there.  The bloody gremlins had it, as I swear (I did, a lot) that I searched everywhere I might have been between making it and looking for it again.    In the end I had to set to and make another!

Half an hour of grinding back and drilling out, and I had released from the door of the cabinet this gorgeous thing:

1662778381_Coatofarms.thumb.jpg.f81270a92e76a7c83b82bd0b6e3ff0e5.jpg

It's  an iron casting of the Arms of Lancaster,  about 12x9" and weighs a ton!     It is damaged (top right) but I may be able to restore it with ?Milliput.   Certainly after wire brushing as much of the accumulated paint off, it is even finer, before I paint strip it.   The casting is most detailed, even down to pupils in the lion's eyes!  I'm so pleased to have preserved this little bit of history, as there was another on a similar box at the other end of the road.   The contractors tried to get it off for me, but a cold chisel wasn't the best tool and and it shattered.

I need to research the history of electricty supply in Lancaster - I know that the City Council was an early provider, so this was probably a corporate emblem.

John

PS, Sorry, maybe this shouldn't be in "Nick's Vitesse" thread, but the gremilns made me do it!   Move if you wish, Nick!

Edited by JohnD

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Posted (edited)

Photo of a very rotten roto chassis, taken about 15 years ago showing the route of the brake lines. Probably been replaced at some point by the look of it but possibly followed the route of the original, but going by the numerous bodges and un-welded sections discovered possibly not.

Photo-0044.jpg

Edited by Mark

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Thanks Mark. That looks something like what I’ve finished up with. In the end I flipped the three way union on the LH over so that pipe exits downwards. Reason being, on my chassis at least the union is mounted high on the chassis and a very tight bend, right at the union, was needed to miss the floor. Pics later.

Tub now lowered for the final time and I’ve been messing with spacers to try and improve door fit. I’ve even broken out the tape measure, which revealed that the LH door aperture was 5mm less than the RH!  That explains a few thing! Bloody POs.....:tongue:. Anyway, managed to resolve that and now have promising looking gaps. The spacer distribution is very different to before. However, I’ve not yet tried shutting the bonnet and the car is still on the rack, so until it’s back on it’s wheels I can’t be sure if we’re good.

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Remember now having to create a tight bend on the brake pipe to miss the Vitesse floor.

I thought I had all the door gaps reasonble on my Vitese until I latched down the new taught soft, and the door gaps changed again. Hopefuly your chassis mods will help prevent this.

 

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Don’t think the chassis mods will make very much difference in that respect (but very happy to be proved wrong!).

My hood is latched. I’m quite curious to see what happens when I release it ........ and whether I can do it up again. Was damn tight before!

That pipe bend is nuts. There are actually witness marks on the floor and the old pipe turned 90 deg immediately after the union barely escaping a kink. Mounting bracket is too high. GT6 one is lower and the pipe is still tight.

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I've been slack about reporting...... but the brake pipes got sorted, I painted the various scars and new bits and then blew some Dinitrol into the various box sections.  That is is a messy nasty job......  Spent a bit of time messing about with body mount shims to try and improve door fit.  Progress was made but the passenger door was simply too long.... or rather, as the tape measure revealed, the gap for it is too short - being 5mm less than the drivers side..... Would be nice to blame the PO but..... anyway, drill out a couple of pop-rivets and cobble up a stretcher with some lumps of wood and a scissor jack we grew the gap and things started to look more hopeful.  Actually improved matters quite a bit - only "slightly crap" now!   Then got it down from the rack without mishap (bit of tutting from 'Elf 'n safety) which didn't affect the gaps much at all - somewhat to my relief - They didn't even change much when I unhooked the hood (though I've yet to try putting it back up!).  Win!

This morning I spent (wasted) a bit of time trying to get my Innovate LC-1 wideband controller to calibrate to the new sensor.  It refuses.  Or rather, it does, but then immediately goes to the infamous "error 8".  Frustratingly it will now calibrate to the old sensor (which it was previously refusing to do, at all), but that one is loose and not in the exhaust.  Getting it into the exhaust is a mission - especially since there is a fair risk it will then refuse to calibrate or simply loose its marbles as it did before.  They (the LC-1s) aren't noted for their reliability though mine has been ok 'till quite recently.

Anyway, arrived at "sod it" on that front and turned the key all the way.  It fired right up.... why wouldn't it, last ran in November.......  So it took me to buy bread (via a slightly indirect route).  It was established that the "new" diff appears to at least be quieter than the old one (I can't hear it with the top down), the engine is still great and it does seem a bit less floppy and rattly than before.  Few bugs to iron out and a bit of cosmetics but she's working again.

7A597EB2-55D7-41DD-9D21-AFB965506800s.jpg

Blinking in the sunshine..... Rack components in the foreground.

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Thanks.
Could do with a wash...... and the annual polish. Not very rewarding exercise, the paint is 30 year old cellulose and looks like it. 10 footer at best these days. A structurally sound one now though. Also, I’ve all but run out of touch-up paint and although the place that supplied the last batch still has the records (impressive, it was in 199x), they now use a different paint/tinter system which does not transfer.  They wanted a piece, or the whole car, to scan. I could now take them the whole car, but suspect they won’t want to see me!

Safety note for those using the pressed metal style of steering UJ. Make sure they actually tighten down onto the splines. Searching for the source of minor play yesterday I discovered that mine weren’t. The bolts were tight but because the bolts were too tight across the flat (or groove) of the shaft they were preventing the ears being drawn in to properly clamp on the splines. I’ve slightly elongated the holes and all seems good now.

May fight with the Innovate a bit more today..... or throw it over the hedge.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Nick Jones said:

Safety note for those using the pressed metal style of steering UJ. Make sure they actually tighten down onto the splines.

They pressed joints are at best rubbish.
Some years ago, I bought one for a Dolomite and it wouldn't fit because
1. both the steering rack pinion and intermediate shaft are circular whereas the pressed joint is oval
2. the splines were a very different shape and
3. the bolt holes didn't line up

Chris Witor sells bushes for the original steering joints but they rebuildable joints are rare nowadays.
Instead I use a forged UJ (T2000 mark two  upper steering joint for manual steering) from Mr. Witor.
The exact same joint is also sold for Group 4 Ford Escort rally cars at a rather inflated price :pirate:

 

 

Ian.

Edited by Sprint95m

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