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Everything posted by ibrooks

  1. I liked one I saw recently. You can't fix stupid........ not even with duct tape.
  2. ibrooks

    Sealed Beam Unit

    I've got two new ones that I'm never going to use that you can have if we can sort couriering of some variety. I'm going to be at the railway museum in York on Saturday if that gets them closer for anyone who might head your direction. Iain
  3. The VIN plate will be wherever the builder put it - there was no requirement for them to be stamped in the chassis in those days. So long as the log book says Robin Hood in some form or other then you should be OK as that's proof that DVLA (or DVLC as it would likely have been back then) were informed of the changes and acknowledged them. Other than that do what you can to check that the car in front of you really does belong to the numbers on the registration document. Number one make sure that it really is a Robin Hood S7 and not a later variant or even a different kit car wearing an S7 identity to avoid having to go through an SVA or IVA test. If it's Cortina based then there is a good chance that it's right - given your location the registration number isn't WBW nnnX is it? I sold my Cortina based S7 to someone in that neck of the woods. As for checking on the car itself - there were a couple of variants of S7. The monocoque can crack just forwards of the scuttle but apart from that they are fairly trouble free. From memory the rear axles are located with a sort of panhard rod that goes to a balljoint on the top of the diff and the modification to put them into the Robin Hood can make them tear the axle casing (others can maybe give more advise here as I never got that far into mine). If it's still got the Cortina front wishbones check the bushes - not a difficult job but one to talk the price down if they have play. The mechanical components - as with any other older car check they are all working and listen/feel for knocks, clunks, whatever. Look for leaks. The build quality - can vary hugely from something that just scrapes through an MOT every year to something that could have come out of the Rolls-Royce workshops, it's all down to the person that built it and any subsequent owners. No two of these cars are going to be the same even down to the position of the switches and instruments on the dashboard - make sure you try everything and that it works and that you are going to be happy using it (at least for a while) because it's no fun bringing a car hoe that you immediately pull apart to make alterations to. Part of the fun is being able to make it your own but you stand a far better chance if you can drive it for at least the rest of the summer and get to know it and if you then feel you need to make changes you have a plan of what you want to do to it come the autumn/winter. Iain
  4. ibrooks


    Unfortunately it's not unusual. I know a few people in the Mini club with disturbingly similar stories - one lass took 48 hours to get home (and it was her daily driver that had expired and not the Mini - she did get some stick over that). Personally I told them where to stick it when they started doing the insurance company trick and sending a renewal at a price which would always fall if you told them you weren't going to renew. Still get calls from them asking if I'd like to renew. Initially I would tell them why not and ask them to remove me from their database but it didn't work so I've turned to becoming abusive in the hopes that my record will be flagged as one not to call but it hasn't worked so-far. Maybe I need to get some stronger swear words from Andrea. Iain
  5. Cosworth 4-pots - no. From memory I believe they will bolt onto the hubs but they foul the track rod end some people have managed to get clearance by grinding one or the other but neither is a component that I'd be willing to start grinding chunks off. They certainly wouldn't work with the 260mm discs - 2wd Cosworths got 300+mm discs from memory (4x4's had vented 260mm fronts the same as the V6 and some 2.0 Sierras). Do you really need more brakes? If you can lock the wheels then you don't. On my Focus (rally car so mechanically a Sierra) I'm going to use MkII Mondeo calipers with MkI Focus ST170 front discs. You need to drill the mounting holes in the sierra hub out to 12mm for the Focus bolts and depending on the variant of your Sierra front hubs you need a pair of spacers to go between the hub and the caliper to get the discs central in the caliper (basically a pair of thick washers). Standard Ford parts without the "Cosworth" premium and 300mm front discs. Iain
  6. What's the betting the original owner knows full well that it's a "wrong 'un" and is trying to offload the problem onto someone else? Iain
  7. Depends on the three points - have you looked at the link I posted? It's a three point mounting but has two shoulder straps so not like a normal car "lap and shoulder" belt. There is quite a lot of belt on the reel and in my GTM it goes through the harness holes on the seat, over a horizontal bar that's welded between the roll-over bar uprights and then down towards the floor. The reel is actually mounted to a crossmember on the rear bulkhead. Another neat little feature is that if you turn the orientation dial it locks the inertia mechanism. If I'm planning on hooning around a race track I can sit down and fasten the belt then reach back and turn the dial a little to give me a fixed belt. In normal use though I can lean forwards to mess with the heater or radio controls and the harness goes with me and then retracts when I sit back again. Iain
  8. I hunted for a set of inertia reel harnesses for ages. Corbeau advertise them in the US but won't sell them in the UK - I came to this after they simply didn't reply to my emails so I asked a mate who manufactures belts if he could make something similar. He can't but he knows someone very high up in Corbeau and gave them a yell. Then I found Paddock's - Bliss. http://www.paddockspares.com/sec700black-securon-700-3-point-harness-with-retractor-black.html Exactly what I was after, by a reputable manufacturer and downright cheap. Iain
  9. A while back Huddersfield Mini Spares (not part of MiniSpares) had a shed-load of mis-matched ones that they were selling cheap. I went across and dug through the pile to come out with a nearly matching set. They might all have gone or it might just be the naff colours that are left but it would be worth a phonecall. Iain
  10. A centreline should be relatively easy on a 2B. Drop a plumbline from each of the centre bolts at the ends of the rear torque tube and draw a line between them. Now halfway along that draw a line at 90 degrees - that's your centreline. Set everything to that because that bit it not adjustable without major work. Drawing lines under the car is easy enough if you have turn plates or similar and substantial blocks to sit them on. Offcuts of 12" floor joists do the job nicely and have no scrap value so builders will often let them go for free. Just getting the bottom of the tire 4" off the floor is enough to give reasonble access underneath (ok maybe at arms length to the middle but good enough). The only complex bit is having the weight on the suspension and arranging that the tires can scrub and turn as you change things so you know you are not just loading up bushes and not getting proper real-life measurements. Iain
  11. I've used a broom handle with electricians tape wrapped around it to make an aligning tool in the past (Vauxhall truck engine - the broom handle was the perfect size for the spigot bearing). On other stuff I've used wooden dowels or bits of metal bar that are the right size (or were made the right size) for the spigot bearing and then layers of tape to increase the diameter where the clutch plate wants to be. Works as well as my mates Snap-On tool with it' assortment of bushes (which are never quite the right size for the car you are working on so they need tape anyway). I've got what is supposed to be a proper aligning tool but it's plastic so tends to bend under the weight of a clutch plate and never actually worked right. However the absolute best aligining tool I have ever used is for Ford gearboxes - it's the input shaft (or at least part of one) from a scrap gearbox. Type-9's and MT75's just see to drop into place when I've used it - I've always assumed it's because the "tool" is EXACTLY the right size rather than to within the nearest millimeter or so. From the sounds of it you are going to have a scrap gearbox halfway through your job so it might be worth just taking the angry grinder to it and lopping the input shaft off to align the clutch. Of course this is assuming you are changing the clutch........ Just swapping the box won't necessitate disturbing the clutch. Pulling the gearbox out of a FWD car isn't so much fun that you are going to want to do it again in 6 months if it needs a clutch then so I can see the argument for changing it as a matter of course whilst you are in there but was there anything wrong with the clutch to start with? and how much longer is an old Almera going to last before the front crossmember has rusted away anyhow? Iain
  12. I tend to buy vinyl for stickers from Dorotape - don't know if they do exactly what you are after (I would think they do) but I wouldn't hesitate to recommend them from a customer service point of view. Iain
  13. Winfields? Probably going to be my first port of call next time around.
  14. Caterpillar are good - my last pair only got thrown away when I'd managed to wear through the sole and that was some years. I also highly rate Prospecta boots - I'd say the same as Cats but without the price premium or bright yellow details so slightly better in an office environment. I've had about 4 pairs of Trojan boots from the local Arco over the last 12 months and never again. The eyelets broke in the first style I got (first time out on the second pair). The different style that I went for have had manufacturing faults (looked like they had been sliced with a knife and they tried to blame me until I pointed out that it clearly carried on past the welting of the sole so must have been there when they were assembled). Lace hooks have just pulled out of the leather...... Iain
  15. Maybe they should threaten to convert it to a camp for travellers if they can't continue motor racing and see which prospect the nearby residents prefer?
  16. Have you seen the "clock watchers clock" that Jaycar do? Some tweaking of the display to maybe have the time in the frame with the seconds LED's chasing around the perimeter where your current LEDs are. It would result in a seriously distracting mirror. I would have thought that the clock could be made to light permanently whilst the seconds LED's only light when a switch is thrown so that it can be a sensible item for most of the time. Iain
  17. The bearings are often used a go-kart axle bearings so if you have trouble finding them have a search on flebay for that. They come in a couple of standard sizes but one inch is the one you want - could be advertised as 25mm as there's very little difference. Shouldn't be more than a few pounds - the place listed on the NW site is a bit over-priced. They might be a far higher quality bearing (personally I don't think so) but given the loads they are designed for and what we are actually doing with them even a cheap rubbish one that might not last a season on a cart should last a lifetime on our steering. Iain
  18. If it's the Mini system then do't go messing around stripping motor to change the park - just change which side of the wheelbox the rack runs (i.e. above or below). As to why you would do it - in order that they clear the bit of the screen you want to see through. With a short but wide screen like a Hood it you can find that the area not swept by the wipers can be fairly large. I've seen Hoods (and other cars) with a third wiper fitted to get around the problem. In some cases people have changed just one wiper so that they park in the centre pointing towards each other and then move towards being vertical as they get to the screen pillars. This leaves a wedge unswept in the middle of the screen but that's generally hidden behind the rear-view mirror anyway so no problem. On some cars this doesn't suit - it's all down to just what combination of parts you have and where they are positioned and how tall you are and where you sit in the car. What works for one might not work for another and what works for you in your car might not work for someone else sat in there. Best bet is to have a go and see what works - but I would recommend removing the arms before the first activation of the wipers after any changes. At that point satisfy yourself where they really do park and what direction they will move wen you turn them on again and re-fit the arms with that in mind. I've seen more than one wiper head off in an un-expected direction and run off the screen putting a good scratch in the paint or bodywork. Iain
  19. Nope - Mondy is 12mm IIRC but the threads are in the calipers rather than in the hub so you need to run a drill through the holes in the Sierra hub and then the calipers bolt on. Depending on the hubs (4wd/2wd) you may or may not need a spacer between the hub and caliper to get the disc central in the caliper and that might mean you need to source longer bolts than the Mondy ones but 4 12.9 bolts at your given length aren't going to cost more than a few of quid. You'll note I said it was relatively easy - it's not quite bolt on but certainly do-able by anyone who has the skill and tools to build a Hood (or even maintain one) and it shouldn't have the car off the road for more than a few hours if you've got the bits in advance.
  20. The 4x4 Sierras mostly got 14" wheels so yes they will fit. What is less standard is the actual calipers that a given 4x4 Sierra got. The 2.0's tended to get the same front calipers as the 2wd's i.e. 240mm vented discs. The V6's got 260mm vented discs (and matching calipers). The 4x4 Cosworths got the same brakes as the V6 4x4's. But.... depending on just where a car was built and when there were all sorts of combinations - I had a GT4x4 which had 240mm vented fronts and rear drums with lobro driveshafts (an almost mythical rear setup and mine was the only one I've seen in the flesh although I've seen pictures of other sets). 2wd Cosworths got bigger brakes front and rear (and 7.5" rear diff). Beware if you are mixing and matching that there are a couple of different offsets for the 260mm fronts so not all calipers will line up with all discs on a given front hub. Some are only a few mm out so with a sliding caliper will work just fine but some are just too far out to fit. If you really want more front braking then MkII Mondeo front calipers can be made to bolt to a Sierra front hub relatively easily and clamp onto a Focus ST170 300mm disc. You will need at least 15" wheels to clear this setup but brake fade is a thing of the past even when it's hauling up a Sierra from illegal speeds.
  21. I was just thinking that...... Unlike most other cars the 2B sliding pillar suspension requires the wheels to scrub sideways as they move up and down. Just jumping up and down on the front of the car whilst it's sat still will never move it unless the wheels are on something to reduce friction and allow some side-to-side movement. Iain
  22. I'd say we are looking at the business end of whatever it is but there's no flywheel on it. The bolts for the bell-housing look too far away from a circle to be a Ford 4-pot so I'm thinking not a Zetec. Those two bolts on their own up the top there are reminiscent of a Cologne V6 but it doesn't look wide enough up top. The vague red bits up top look like they might be the rocker cover of a twin-cam of some variety. Looks like maybe an ally EFi intake manifold on the right of the picture so drivers side if I'm right about which angle we're looking at. I did wonder about an MX5 lump but I don't see a cam sensor on the back of the exhaust cam. So...... Vauxhall XE maybe?
  23. They haven't seemed to make the connection between them making it difficult for people to comply with their regulations and the increasing number of people either not complying or looking for ways to circumvent them. One of the other car clubs I'm in often gets the question of how to tell them nowadays that you have scrapped a car yourself. Generally because they've bought a second one for spares, pulled everything useful off it and chopped the remains up and weighed it in. DVLA say they need a certificate of destruction or you need to keep declaring SORN until you get one (that'll be forever then because they can't). The answer seems to be to contact DVLA telling them that you sold the car to someone and filled in the paperwork and sent it off but haven't heard back from them yet confirming that you are no longer the registered keeper. They ask you for the details of the new keeper again - which you don't have because it was on the document you sent off to them a month or more ago. They then update their records so you are no longer the registered keeper but the car is still "alive" but with a flag for plod to pull it over and get details if they see it on the road. Of course as people are becoming aware of the problem it's actually happening a step earlier because someone buying a car that they know they are just going to pull apart and dispose of the remains never bother to register it in their name to start with. "I'll take the documents and send them off" translates to I'll shred them and let you deal with DVLA when the current SORN declaration runs out. Net result - there are an increasing number of records on their database for cars that have been chopped up but they have no mechanism for us to tell them about it. Or they could just have left the tickbox on the document where you confirm that you have scrapped the car yourself.........
  24. That Mazda owner is only likely to be a business specialising in them. They will not pay top dollar because they need to be able to sell it on for a profit. The chances of someone with an MX5 actually needing all the parts you have surplus is fairly minimal - they might well need one or two of the bits but the rest as far as they are concerned is just something that they too will need to get rid of and transport and store until they can get rid..... If it was easy to offload this type of stuff for good money we would all be breaking cars for a living. Iain
  25. I'd bite the bullet and stick a flue in given the advantages of a wood burner. Obviously I did - the roof of my workshop is tiled. I took one tile out and replaced it with a roof flashing (ally plate with a high temp silicone "boot" bonded to it). Two lengths of twin wall 5" flue and a length of vitreous plus adaptors, a hat and odds and sods set me back nearly £300 for the flue but having used it last weekend with ice on the roof it'll be worth it once it gets proper cold and I can still work out there instead of wasting y life in front of the TV because it's too cold to work in the garage. I do want to look at the ash door and notice that the current model has a different style - I also want to play with extending the baffle forwards and I think fins on the vitreous enamel part of the chimney would be a good idea. It would have been nice for the burner to be a little further into the corner than it is but that would have meant it was in the next row of tiles and I would have had to remove two or start cutting them so it was a bit of a compromise. The lost space in the corner is going to become the metal store. But alternatively...... http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Indirect-Diesel-Paraffin-Marquee-Workshop-Heater-space-heater-/321019359133?pt=UK_Home_Garden_Hearing_Cooling_Air&hash=item4abe3eaf9d Either it could sit outside with the warm air ducted into your workspace or it could sit inside with the exhaust ducted out. Obviously ducting the exhaust would be a more critical job but more efficient as you would also have a length of toasty exhaust pipe radiating heat inside. Iain
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