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Discussion Starter #421
Trunk Lid:
I wanted to use the run of nice weather we were having to test some "stopper" filler I'd bought.



So I used some on the trunk lid and it seemed to work OK, although I made a right mess when using some normal filler.
( As I added too much hardener and it set mid application. )

Note:
Stopper = Grey & Other filler = Light green.



Thankfully fixing this mess just required a bit of extra sanding down.



Here is an attempt to show some of the pin holes that were filled in with the stopper.



Then the lid got another coat of etch primer.



These steps were then repeated on the sunny side.







Before I started the same process on the under side.







Clearly there is a lot of work still required before paint goes on, but it is encouraging to see these surfaces start to get smoother. :cool:
 

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Discussion Starter #422
Maintenance Access:
Another concern I had was the limited space available to reach this nut between the floor and frame.



It was already pretty tight and I still had to close the hole in the floor to the right of this nut (see next post).

So I knew I would just have to bite the bullet and make some "space" around the nut.

I had one of these plastic eggs in my "might come in useful" pile.



So I cut the top section into two.



Before marking up the floor and then drilling / cutting the shape out.



I will then fibreglass this shape in from above and seal the gaps in the floor from below.





Added parcel tape to the outside of the egg molds, they were held in place from below.



By using strips of fibreglass matting it was easier to maintain this shape as I built up the layers.



You can see what this "sunny side" ended up looking like in some of the following posts.

As I still needed to remove the mold from the underside of these hollows.
( Note: The tape holding this is place had already been removed before this photo was taken. )



Thankfully the parcel tape did its job and the plastic mold came out without any issues.



Then it just needed a layer of fibreglass filler to seal / blend in the edges.



Then this was roughly sanded down.



Obviously this was repeated on both sides and links in with work covers in the next few posts.
 

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Discussion Starter #423
Rear Framework, Floors & Wheel Arches - Part 1:
One of the key solutions to the problems I faced was to join the following parts into a single unit:
- Two lowered floor pans (supplied with the kit)
- Rear framework (supplied with the kit, but modified to attach to a Spitfire bulkhead)
- A large section from a Triumph Spitfire (hand brake panel, rear wheel arches & trunk floor)



However, in order to combine these parts together, they did need a few modifications...

Parts of the floors needed to be cut away so they could be slotted into place around the framework.

Passenger Side:





Driver's Side:
The gaps in the floor on this side are a lot smaller, because the framework is different on both sides!
You can also see the extra length of box section I had to weld into place in order to support the floor properly on this side.



Note:
The process of joining the body shell to the frame work involves a combination of two processes.
- The use of bonding paste where the two pieces touch.
- The use of fibreglass matting to "bridge" any gaps between the frame and body.

So repairing the floors, and sealing other gaps (next post), were a good chance for me to practice using fibreglass in this way.

I started by covering the floor gaps with some cardboard covered in parcel tape from underneath.



Before several layers of fibreglass matting were applied over the top.



Then a layer of fibreglass filler covered that.



Which was roughly sanded down.



In terms of timing, this work then had to wait until the "hollows" covered in the previous post were added.
( Although the hollow isn't easy to see in this photo. )



So now both floors were water tight and as this is underneath the car, I can live with the "function over form" look.

These repairs have now been primed.





And with a bit of luck they will be painted in the next couple of days.

End of Part 1...
 

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Discussion Starter #424
Rear Framework, Floors & Wheel Arches - Part 2:
Similarly, the rear arches had whole sections removed so the framework could fit inside it.

Passenger Side - Underneath:



Driver's Side - Underneath:



It took me a little while to work out the best way to seal these gaps would involve using a "bridge" to help cover the hole.

So I cut out the shape I needed in cardboard.



Before transferring that to one of my fibreglass off cuts and cutting it out.



So I now had a fibreglass "bridge" that slotted into place like so.



Then I added fibreglass matting across the top of this.



I also had to seal up the small vertical gap between these two panels.
( Note: Extra matting was added to this area after the photo was taken. )



I then added a layer of fibreglass filler over the top.



Hopefully, the overall join is a bit easier to see when the filler was sanded down.

Passenger Side:
( Note: The small gap that remains in this photo under the bolt holes was filled in after the work in the next posts was completed. )



Driver's Side:



As with the floors in the previous post, I've only reached the primer stage.





Although, as with the floors, the primer has highlighted a couple of small holes I need to fill in before going any further.

End of Part 2...
 

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Discussion Starter #425
Rear Framework, Floors & Wheel Arches - Part 3:
After a bit of huffing & puffing I managed to turn the frame over by myself.



So now I could start sealing up the cut outs in the rear arches on the sunny side.



This time I needed two "bridges", one on the top.



And one on the front.



So it was time to recycle one of the original fibreglass front foot wells that came with the kit.





Each piece then needed a bit of fine tuning to ensure a good fit.

The driver's side was pretty straight forward.



But the inner face of the front passenger side panel needed to be ground out a bit to accommodate the framework.



Before it would fit nicely.



Obviously at this point I needed to clean up the mess I had made before I could start any fibreglass work. :rolleyes:

When these pieces had been 'glassed into place and then tidied up a bit, it was looking like this.



End of Part 3...
 

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Discussion Starter #426
Rear Framework, Floors & Wheel Arches - Part 4:
I then repeated the same steps again to close the next set of gaps along the front edge of the rear arches.

This involved cutting out some more sections from the fibreglass front footwell.





Before 'glassing them into position and tidying things up a bit.



This still left a few small gaps around the framework like so.



So I added some fibreglass filler around the top/horizontal edge to seal them up.





Before adding a skim of normal body filler to the front/vertical edge.



In terms of actual timing, this work over lapped the previous posts and so far I've only just started sanding the filler down.

However, my main priority is the underside, as this can't be reached when the frame is bolted on to the chassis.

Note:
The extreme corners of the frame/floor/arches on both sides still need to be sealed off.



But this job will be linked to how I extend the Spitfire wheel arches out to meet the fibreglass body shell.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Which pretty much brings me back up to date, so until next time, take care, Paul. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #427
Rear Framework, Floors & Wheel Arches - Part 1:
I will spare you the full details of the very repetitive work required to finish the underside of this big section.

All the areas that were "sealed" (see previous posts) received the same treatment...

Extra filler work.



More primer.



Some paint.



Some stone guard.



In the meantime I'd started to "slap on" under seal to the rest of the section, while I was doing the above work.







That way, then the preparation of the repaired areas had caught up with the rest, there was only a small area left to unseal.





Once everywhere was finally the same surface, I could add the final coat of under seal over the whole area in one go.

I was in the process of turning this big section over when I realised this was a great shot of the underside. :cool:



Some of the outside edges have not been covered in under seal at this time, as they will be joined to the body shell later in the build.

So the under seal will only go on when that work is complete and it will still be easy to reach the outside edges when this section is bolted to the chassis.

End of Part 1...
 

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Discussion Starter #428
Rear Framework, Floors & Wheel Arches - Part 2:
There were also a few other odd jobs to do on this section before it was ready to bolt back on to the chassis...

The "feet" I cut off & re-welded back on at the rear of the framework need to be cleaned up.





So after a bit of sanding, they both got a coat of Kurust.



Before finally getting a coat of paint.





- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

The two control arm brackets were bolted back into place.



Where the "egg" hollows I built did make it easier to reach/tighten the nuts. ::cool:



- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Trimmed off what remains of the small lip along the edge of my boot floor.





Before giving it a lick of paint.



Note:
I'd left this lip in place while working on this section, but the floor is now supported from the other side by the extra bracket I made.
 

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Discussion Starter #429
Trunk Access Panel:
This is another area that seems to have dragged on for ages, as my lack of experience has resulted in some over complicated solutions.

The only good news is that this should look the part from the outside and very few people will see the mess I am making of the inside.

Again, here are just the highlights of the final fixes in this area, starting with the lid locked into position.



I fixed some bolts onto the mounting plates and taped them into position.





Several rounds of fibre glassing later and the mounting plates were set.



This allowed me to mark up where I needed to drill the holes for the locating pins in the fibreglass "lumps" I'd previously added to the lid itself.





Re-fitted both of the locating pins (OK, they are just bolts with the thread ground down :rolleyes:).





Now the lid could be lowered into place and the pins slid home preventing the lid from moving up & down, or side to side. :cool:



To say I was relieved would be a massive understatement.

With the position of the lid now fixed, I made a start on improving the panel gaps around the lid.



Note: There is still a bit of work to do in this area to ensure a smooth transition between the lid & the body shell.

However, as I said at the start, at least the outside looks good, regardless of what lurks underneath.
 

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Discussion Starter #430
Gearbox Cover - Part 1:
There was quite a bit of work to do in preparation for fitting this cover to the bulkhead.

I started by making some cardboard templates to help me work out how the "straight" rubber seal was going to cover these bulkhead angles.







Although in a rare moment of clarity, I realised the width of the seal would cover the small kink in the driver's side. :cool:





So I cut the rubber seal to the right length for the starting point on both sides.



Unfortunately, I then realised I couldn't mark up the first vertical holes required in the bulkhead with the seal in place.

So I fixed the cover into position with just a section of the seal under the cover near the front of the bulkhead.



This allowed me to roughly mark up the position of the hole, before I could fit the "catch" and fine tune the position.



Then I worked my way along the rubber seals, opening up all the holes required in the right place.



Eventually the rubber seals on both sides were done.



End of Part 1:
 

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Discussion Starter #431
Gearbox Cover - Part 2:
Next I added an extra screw on either side of the horizontal edge.

Before:



After:



Then I had to sort out the remaining vertical face fixings, so I marked the position of the top edges of the bulkhead onto the cover.



As the cover comes with 3 pilot holes pre-drilled in this top area and thankfully the two outside ones were going to be no problem.



But the centre one was too low compare to the amount of metal in the bulkhead available to screw into.



So another hole had to be added a little higher up & the other pilot holes could be opened up to the right size.



Then I decided to add extra bolts on either side of the vertical face roughly half way down.



So after messing about for a very long time, all the holes required to fit this cover are finally done. :cool:

Note:
Although the following photos are not great, they do show why all of the cover holes had to be drilled from scratch.

As this is what the 2nd hand Spitfire bulkhead looked like before I started to repair the mess / rust.





At least this job was a lot easier to do with the bulkhead off the chassis.

End of Part 2...
 

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Discussion Starter #432
Gearbox Cover - Part 3:
In a vain attempt to "age" the plastic cover itself, I started to bend the metal strip to shape.



But I quickly realised the only way to shape this properly was by actually fitting it, so I put some etch primer on.



Then spent quite a bit of time working out the best spacing for the rivets.



Before making a complete mess of actually drilling the holes where I had carefully marked them. :rolleyes:



A combination of clamping and hammering allowed me to start at one end & work my way across.



Then I could trim off both ends of the metal strip to match the shape of the cover.





Then I gave the metal strip & rivets a quick coat of stone guard.



The whole thing will eventually get a final coat of paint to give it the same finish all over.

Although first I need to work out if I can replace the four Spitfire screws holding this gear lever bracket in place.
( Note: At some point I also need to make a gear lever cover that will also be held in place by this bracket. )



As ideally, I would fit four more of the "bolt head" screws I used on the false access panel I will be fitting to the cover.



This is a photo of the modified cover that another builder made and that I am trying to copy.



So hopefully when my cover it is finally painted and fixed into position it will blend in a bit better.
 

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Discussion Starter #433
Car Heater:
It seemed a lot easier to fix the heater into position while the bulkhead was still off the chassis.

So I started by fixing the two vents into position, where the original mounting plate acts as a big washer at the back.





The "thru" bulkhead connectors were next, and yes, I've left the dribble of paint there to test my OCD recovery. :blink:



The heater itself just needs a couple of washers to keep it off the bulkhead.





Then I connected the two water hoses from the heater to the bulkhead & fitted a "spacer" to stop them rubbing together.

The air vent hoses were also connected from the heater to either side of the cockpit via a "Y" connecting piece.





Looking at the markings on the "Y" piece, it is certainly a long way from "home".



All the air ducting is zip tied out of the way, so that the dashboard can be still be fitted without any fouling issues.





On the other side of the bulkhead, I fitted the heater control valve and it's mounting bracket.



Note:
Some of the "drops" you can see in the photos above are not paint splashes, but rain.
As I was desperately trying to finish this job before the covers had to go back on.
 

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Discussion Starter #434
Hand Brake Mechanism:
Initially, I started to touch up the paint of the Spitfire hand brake mechanism in situ.



But quickly realised that I might as well dismantle it properly to both paint and re-grease it.





I cleaned up the two pivot pins & their corresponding pivot holes so they could be greased and put back together.



Thankfully I worked out there was an easier way for me to connect all these pieces together...

I started by putting just the cable holder section back onto the, now greased up, "chassis" cable.



I also added some grease to the two cable guides fitted to either side of the chassis.



There is also another pivot bolt that connects the mech. to the underside of Spitfire hand brake panel / rear arches section I'm using.



The key for me was fixing this into position, when I could simply prop up the underside for easy access.



So after cleaning up the surfaces & greasing them, I could bolt the mech. into place and hammer the edges of the locking washer.



I then shoved a load of grease into the hand brake cable guide in the arches & threaded the cable through.







So now I only need to crawl under the car to re-fit the pivot pin for the cable guide piece.
 

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Discussion Starter #435
Exhaust System:
When the twin tail pipes were last removed, the rear section of the exhaust was still temporarily held in place with some string. :rolleyes:



But this was now in the way of other work I needed to do, so I removed this whole section.



Which allowed me to pull the various parts of the exhaust together in one place.



Unfortunately, the previous owner had managed to overspray blue paint on various parts of this brand new stainless steel system. :sad:



Along with these brackets.



Plus there were bits of the original parts sticker left over too.



So it took a variety of degreasing, washing, rubbing with paint thinner and polishing with "Autosol" to improve things.







Whilst this is still not 100% perfect, it is a big improvement from where I started and that is all I was aiming for. :cool:
 

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Discussion Starter #436
Rolling Chassis - Part 1:
After working on the two big pieces prior to refitting them, it was time to ensure the chassis was ready to receive them.
( Although the first job was to sweep the driveway so I had a clean area to work in & lie on the floor. :rolleyes: )



I spent some time looking at the bolt holes / crush tubes in the chassis that the framework bolts to.

Because I had previously noticed one bolt was slightly off centre before I removed the framework. :sad:



Obviously this is one area where there can be no short cuts, so this meant quite a bit of extra work to fix this.

The crush tube was freed up, repositioned, and a new hole in the bottom of the chassis was drilled & the old hole welded up.





Note: This was area was tidied up a bit more after the photo was taken.

In the end I did a bit of fine tuning on all four bolt holes just to be sure everything was going to be as good as I could make it.

So you can see where all four of the crush tube were re-welded to the top edge of the chassis.



Note:
The two holes in between the welded holes are the original seat belt mounting point, which are simply re-used as they are.

Next I worked on the "spreader" washers I had made out of metal and painted ages ago.

By making individual cardboard templates for each washer and numbering them, I could ensure each hole was in the right place.







There is a curve on the inside edge of the chassis, so these washers stop short of that.



The combination of crush tubes and big washers will ensure that there is no risk to the chassis when the frame is bolted on.

End of Part 1...
 

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Discussion Starter #437
Rolling Chassis - Part 2:
As well as spraying paint over the new exhaust, the previous owner managed to get it everywhere else too. :rolleyes:

So I had to clean up the brand new dampers & braided brake hoses on both sides.

Here is an example of Before and After on one side.





Parts of the rear chassis were also covered, so they got a lick of paint too.





I added an extra "P Clip" to the rear chassis to ensure the brake hard line was kept a safe distance away from it.





It was at this point the exhaust pipe & string were removed (see previous post) so this area could get painted.



Note:
The hard fuel line is currently just bent out of the way, this is not it's final route.

I also painted both sides of the chassis where I had been fixing the bolt holes.





On a UK forum I use, another builder kindly made some notes on a photo I'd posted.



So I just printed this off & worked my way through the list, cleaning, greasing & checking the wires.

I also wrapped some extra protection around the wires while I was at it, so it looks much better.



Note:
At some point I am going to wrap up parts like this so they don't keep getting messed up by other work still to come.

End of Part 2...
 

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Discussion Starter #438
Rolling Chassis - Part 3:
There were just a few other small jobs that just needed to be ticked off before I could move to the next stage.

I sprayed some stone guard through the holes in either side of this chassis "arm".



As this small boxed in area seemed to be designed to trap water and breed rust.
( A long running British car manufacturer's tradition. :rolleyes: )

Then I squirted a load of Waxoyl into the area & dug out these four old grommets from my pile of left over Spitfire parts.



After a bit of cleaning, they seal up the two holes on either side of each chassis arm.





So fingers crossed this will keep the rot away.

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For now, I have simply pushed the first two sections of the exhaust back into position.





As I need to mount the twin tail pipes in place before making any final adjustments and sealing/tighten everything up.

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Removed the brackets that hold the rubber mounts for the twin tail pipes to the trunk floor support bracket.



And gave them a few coats of stone guard.



- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Finally, I re-taped some of the rubber rings back to the chassis, as they tend to move / fall off as soon as the bulkhead is re-fitted. :rolleyes:



 

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Discussion Starter #439
Fitting The Bulkhead - Part 1:
By now, both the bottom, and lower front, areas of the bulkhead had been given their final coat of underseal.





The last time I fitted the bulkhead, I used one of these Spitfire metal spacers on each side, between these bulkhead mounting points & the chassis.







This time around I wanted to see if I could lower the bulkhead ever so slightly.
- So I switched to just a rubber washer on the inner mount.
- And replaced the rubber ring on the outer mount with a normal washer.



So it was time to ask my wife to help me lift the bulkhead back into position for the final time.



With the bulkhead bolted into position, the front mounts now sit just right. :cool:



So now I could start bolting other parts onto the bulkhead, starting with my completely OTT battery box drain hose.



Next I removed the mounting brackets from the brake and clutch master cylinders & rubbed the old blue paint down.



Before giving them a coat of stone guard.



End of Part 1...
 

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Discussion Starter #440
Fitting The Bulkhead - Part 2:
I fitted my new brake light switch to the rear brake lever, replacing the one I'd broken when I first removed the pedal from my donor car.



So I wasn't best pleased when within minutes of doing this, the "insides" of the new switch were on the outside. :cursing:



Despite wasting a lot of time trying to put this switch back together, I've had to put it in the "come back to later" pile.

To say bolting the brake and clutch pedals to their respective master cylinders was a pain would be an understatement.

In the end, I had to get my wife to help support the pedal under the bulkhead while I tried to line up all 8 holes per pedal.

But after a lot of messing about, the master cylinders are now fixed to the bulkhead. :cool:



Note:
I wanted to double check the original hard line routing on my donor car before fixing these pipes back into position.

I have since found this photo, so I will come back fix the hard lines to the bulkhead with some new "P Clips" at some point.



But for now, you can see that the recessed panel I made for the bulkhead many moons ago is doing its job nicely.



Which left me with two pedals done and one still to go.



Next I lightly rubbed down this brake pipe junction.



Before masking it off & giving it a couple of coats of stone guard.





When that was dry I bolted it to the bulkhead in its original Spitfire position.



That was as far as I have got with the bulkhead work.
 
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