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Junior Charter Member
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Discussion Starter #1
It’s time to kick off the build thread for FFR#9592. I put our order in back in February, opting for the complete kit after having read several threads on the pros and cons of complete vs. donor. So thanks to everyone who has ever shared an opinion on that particular topic.

Options selected: powdercoated frame, 3-link suspension, stainless side pipes, body cut outs, vinyl seats (researching high back seats, so went with the cheapest option here), the classic gauge set, the 15” Halibrand wheels, wind wings, sun visors, battery cut off switch, vinyl dash with glovebox, passenger and driver rollbars chromed, and the assembled side louver set.

Growing list of build mods as I read more build threads:
Second brake reservoir - too many to count
Herb's Door Panels - I think everybody
Russ's trunk mod - only a slightly smaller group than everybody
Seat Warmers - edwardb's 20th Anniversary build
Finished edges on the carpet pieces - edwardb
Dash layout with speedo in center dash - edwardb - already arranged to send back the cut dash
Toying with the idea of a push button start linked to a key fob and dropping the ignition key entirely

Actual build details to follow and a running blog to document the experience of building this with my twin sons.

A big thanks to egchewy (and everyone posting there) for starting his build first so I always have an immediate and current place to look for feedback! This has already saved me from having to pull the F panels to paint them, something I was unaware I wanted to do until I started reading that thread.

Foster
 

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welcome

welcome to the madness. i started off fast and furious, but have since slowed a bit on my build. lots of useful info out there and i found that it was better to do lots of research so you don't run into as many issues along the way. i'm pretty sure i've built and rebuilt most of the steps at least once. good luck and feel free to reach out if you have any questions on a certain part of the build.
eugene
 

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Junior Charter Member
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408 Posts
Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Thanks Eugene,

I've got my first question for the board. My sons and I got the passenger side suspension onto the car today. I preemptively wire brushed down the upper control arm before inserting the upper ball joints. Reasonably easy - at least no force applied that seemed excessive. However, I only had blue locktight on hand. Does it need to be the red? Should I pull it apart and apply the red in place of the blue? My mistake was assuming the red bottle corresponded to the type of locktight inside. :)

Driver's side lower control arm front brackets are too close by at least 1/4", so I'll be applying the 1/2" threaded bar + nuts spreader solution to that. Stopped our progress cold this afternoon. And we followed the manual, which had us install the shock prior to the spindle, which added an unneeded challenge. Rewatching the FFR build video at home they install the spindles before the shocks. I might have to watch and take notes at the same time.

Short term punch list:

Reread Jeff's description of the proper orientation for the upper control arms.
Research shock settings and how to change them if needed.

Foster
 

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Foster,
You’re doing it correct. Research your next move and double check it when you’re done. Your list of options is a good one. I did many of the same with a basic kit. If you’re unsure of something, post pics and we can all take a look. I’ve caught more than one error I was about to make by reading other people’s build logs. If you get stuck, the pro builders on this site are awesome. That includes edwardb. Don’t stress and enjoy the project. My son and I started the true build on December 22nd of last year. We took our first licensed ride last Tuesday. That being said, the body is coming back off and engine changes will prevent us from driving for a couple of weeks, but it’s no big deal.

Scott
 

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Thanks Eugene,

I've got my first question for the board. My sons and I got the passenger side suspension onto the car today. I preemptively wire brushed down the upper control arm before inserting the upper ball joints. Reasonably easy - at least no force applied that seemed excessive. However, I only had blue locktight on hand. Does it need to be the red? Should I pull it apart and apply the red in place of the blue? My mistake was assuming the red bottle corresponded to the type of locktight inside. :)

Driver's side lower control arm front brackets are too close by at least 1/4", so I'll be applying the 1/2" threaded bar + nuts spreader solution to that. Stopped our progress cold this afternoon. And we followed the manual, which had us install the shock prior to the spindle, which added an unneeded challenge. Rewatching the FFR build video at home they install the spindles before the shocks. I might have to watch and take notes at the same time.

Short term punch list:

Reread Jeff's description of the proper orientation for the upper control arms.
Research shock settings and how to change them if needed.

Foster
Check upper ball joint orientation for sure. Red thread lock on the BJ. some recommend tack welding BJ to UCA. I don't weld so I just marked it with a silver sharpie so I can see if it starts unthreading. I put the shocks on before spindle without any issues. Double check orientation of spindle to outer tie rod piece.
 

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FFCobra Craftsman
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... so I just marked it with a silver sharpie so I can see if it starts unthreading...
Blue will be fine. Just mark it. If it ever does start to move you will have some clunks and bangs long before it comes apart so don't sweat it.
 

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Blue loc tight is your friend. Buy it in bulk and use it on every nut. There cars rattle and roll and nuts will come loose in the future.

Have fun with your build and get going on making some memories.
 

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Premium Member
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EXCEPT...don't use loc-tite of any kind on the nylock nuts. The chemical will destroy the plastic insert.


John
 

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Junior Charter Member
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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
Thanks for the feedback all. Given the difficulty in getting the upper ball joints out, I'm going to take the wait and see approach. I'll apply torque paint and monitor the situation. If, when finally on the road, the upper ball joint starts working free, I'll take advantage of whatever force loosened it up to break it down and apply red lock tight at that point.

Next question, which raises another question - couldn't these be called question threads instead of build threads? Or maybe Q&B threads, since there seems to be equal amounts of both? :)

The attached pic shows a small set screw included with the front Konis (perhaps the least interesting first pic in a build thread). I assumed it is a set screw used to pin the spring seat to the sleeve, but cannot confirm that in the manual. It fit in the spring sleeve and so that's where they are now. Was that the correct assumption?

Foster
 

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Junior Charter Member
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Discussion Starter #10
Tour and Build Space

There wasn't really a question about whether or not I was going to build an FFR. It was the boys I wondered about. My two sons had always proclaimed interest, but would they actually be committed to such a large project? To gauge their commitment we took a drive to the factory for a tour. The tour was great, but it was the showroom that really grabbed their attention. It definitely piqued their interest and brought them back 10 years to their first ride in a Factory Five Roadster.

On the drive home we finalized the decision to buy a complete kit and start the build process.

Foster
 

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Junior Charter Member
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Discussion Starter #11
Build Space

The biggest immediate challenge was having no suitable space for the build. I shopped around some for garages - all commercial sites with 10,000+ sqft and 4 digit monthly rentals, storage garages - really designed for park and leave, no power, no lights, no facilities, and even asked a few friends to rent their garages - they all had too much non-car stuff stored there.

So my wife ended up suggesting her commercial property. I'd only been there once or twice and only on the retail side of the building. Turns out, there was a usable garage space. It had two drawbacks - it was 45 minutes away on a good day and there was no way to drive into the garage. It's more accurate to call it a loading dock area.

But it was free, so we started the cleanup. We hauled out the junk, installed some new lighting, bought the first of many new tools, kept every bit of cardboard to cover the cold and dirty floor, set up some shelves, and added some decoration to the walls to save us from having to paint them.

Foster
 

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Not a waxer
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11,597 Posts
Blue thread locker will be fine. Yes, the setscrew is for the spring collar but I don't recommend using them; they have the potential to "booger up" (that's the technical term) the threads on the sleeve. Once the weight is on the springs the adjusting collars will not move. I've deleted them on every car I have built and after tens of thousands of miles and years on the road none of them have ever changed.

Carry on and good luck!

Jeff
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Set screws? We don't need no stinking set screws!

Thanks Jeff. I'll pull the set screws next time I'm in the garage.

Foster
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Garage Drawbacks

There weren't any reasonable options for dealing with the distance to the garage. So I focused on drawback #2 instead. Over the last couple of winters the spot in front of the garage had become the primary spot to pile the snow. As a result, it was an uneven mass of gravel, weeds, and dirt. I had plenty of room in the lot for the delivery truck to park parallel to the building, but only 25 or so feet between the building and the road. So the frame and body would have to be unloaded and then moved into the garage.

I looked at renting a bobcat to even out the ground. I looked at dozens of ramp possibilities, most of which would not accommodate the wheels on the dolly the frame would be lowered onto, and thus invited further modification. I considered building a ramp, even pouring a concrete one. At the end of the day all of these options added up to a large investment of time and money.

After researching how much the frame weighed, with and without the body, I decided to build a set of ramps that would line up with a UHaul truck and fetch the kit myself. Ramp assembly was reasonably straight forward and I ended up with a nice gentle slope from the height of the truck bed to the floor of my garage. Picture 2 shows the double lip I had to account for due to the prior-owner's strange decision to not align his loading dock with the floor of the loading bay.

Lessons learned:

1. Don't say things like "I'll need to go to Home Depot maybe twice. This is a mechanical build." The universe will immediately engineer reasons for you to visit Home Depot on a weekly basis. This will include your water line for the ice maker letting go and flooding your kitchen the week before you are ready to start in on the front suspension.

2. The height of the truck bed is not the only truck dimension that needs to be factored into a ramp build.

Foster
 

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Discussion Starter #15
FFR Pickup

With the garage cleaned out, lit, and mostly prepped for the build and my delivery date already a week in the past it was time to pick up the kit. My friend and I secured a UHaul truck and made the drive south to Wareham.

We talked about the build and my plans for the car. I noted we were driving in a Ford truck and that I'd be putting a Ford engine into the roadster. So of course the lot at Factory Five Racing was full of Corvettes when we pulled in. A Corvette club from Pennsylvania was traveling in New England and had made Factory Five a stop on their road trip.

Seeing a new Gran Sport and new Z06 sitting across from each other was very cool. As nice as they were, they weren't the car I was there for, that car was waiting inside. Or at least all the parts that made up the car. Or most of them. Back orders, you know.

We wandered inside and in short order they were pulling 9592 and the part pallet down from the racks. We started loading boxes while they pulled the frame and body and then watched as custom rig made loading the UHaul an almost comically simple process.

We buttoned up and headed north to the garage, where I would discover the flaw with the ramp I'd built the night before.

Time lapse video: https://youtu.be/yWeiixDucGg
 

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Premium Member
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Thanks Eugene,

I've got my first question for the board. My sons and I got the passenger side suspension onto the car today. I preemptively wire brushed down the upper control arm before inserting the upper ball joints. Reasonably easy - at least no force applied that seemed excessive. However, I only had blue locktight on hand. Does it need to be the red? Should I pull it apart and apply the red in place of the blue? My mistake was assuming the red bottle corresponded to the type of locktight inside. :)
After only a few miles, I found this.


So I did this.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Can't weld

That is an alarming amount of travel for just a few miles. I'll make sure to put on a mile or two while in go-cart stage to keep an eye on things. If they are walking, I'll weld them in.

Jeff - the usual way - https://media.giphy.com/media/W6US3Xlt7uZLa/giphy.gif

Although that would probably break the new welds on the upper ball joints.

I'll hire a flatbed for a short delivery. Tilt the bed down a bit to line up with the 26" dock height, winch roadster onto flatbed, short right hand turn, lower flat bed and winch car to the ground.

Foster
 

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did you use blue or red loctite? what happened to your weld?!
I think it was red, but I can't remember. The weld lasted forever.
 
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