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Discussion Starter #701
Getting Closer – Part 2
Another builder was kind enough to send me some original Lucas rear lights with glass covers.

But their fixing holes were slightly narrower than the plastic rear lights I had been using.

Therefore, I need some big ‘washers’ to use inside the bodyshell to secure the lights in place.

This involved cutting out some aluminium and setting up my 'work bench' ready for drilling. :rolleyes:



Unfortunately, I didn't have a hole saw drill bit the right size.

So, I cut the hole smaller and then enlarged it with a hand file.



Eventually, I had all four washers done.



Then I needed to take the wired up connection plugs from the old rear lights…



And graft them to Lucas lights, which also had different fitting just to make things interesting.



I just took my time and, eventually, I had all four lights wired up, tested and ready to go.



I then drilled the new fixing holes in the bodyshell for the lights.



Excuse the poor photo, but, as expected, there wasn't enough bodywork to play with.
( You can see how much further out the original two fixing holes were by comparison. )



Hence the need for the big washers to sandwich the lights into position.

Just to given you an idea of the joys of working outside in November…

I started drilling just as the sun was setting and the temperature was dropping.



But by the time I finished drilling, I was now working by street light and getting very cold.



Which meant there was no chance of getting a decent photo of all the lights in place.



End of Part 2…
 

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Discussion Starter #702
Getting Closer – Part 3
Here is an old photo of how the back end looked before with my previous, plastic, rear lights.
( With one of those VW Golf SUVs for a size comparison. ;) )



And this is what is looks like now and I am a very happy boy indeed. :cool:



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With the car really starting to look the part I needed to do something about my wheels.

As they have been stored at the bottom of my garden under a tarpaulin for months now.

So they are not looking there best to say the least. :rolleyes:





Thankfully this is nothing a good scrub can’t fix.



Plus, some significant quantities of tyre/tire black.



I still need to polish the wheel itself, but the first one is almost done, with three more to do.



Hopefully, weather permitting, I will be back on the road before the end of the month. < Touch Wood >

So until next time, take care, Paul. :)
 

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Excellent work Paul, keeping chipping away at it and the big problems will become smaller and smaller.
The new tail-lights look great and the cleaned up wheels and tires will really set the whole car off!
Looks like an Iconic British Roadster/Speedster, ubber cool! Wish I could see it in-person. You've done a fantastic job, especially given where you came from with it originally.
:wink2:
 

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Discussion Starter #704
MPTech - Thanks. :cool:

At the lowest points of this build I would not have believed how well the car has turned out.

So I'm going to skip the last few jobs and cut straight to the chase...

Back on the road
Yes, I took the car for it MOT (UK roadworthiness test) yesterday and it passed. :D

So here are a few photos taken today with the sun shining (although it was pretty cold out).

Although, I keep saying this, but one day I will remember to straighten up the suspension after I climb out. :rolleyes:

Also, due to the fact I made a mess of applying the roundels, I've only got a number on one side at the moment.

















Despite the fact that Christmas is now just around the corner, I will try to use the car as much as I can over the Winter.

So until next time, take care, Paul. :)
 

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Not sure how adjustable your suspension is, but I'd recommend finding a club or shop that can do a corner-scale balance. It will handle / stop better and be safer for your cruising pleasure.
 

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Not sure how adjustable your suspension is, but I'd recommend finding a club or shop that can do a corner-scale balance. It will handle / stop better and be safer for your cruising pleasure.
My thoughts exactly, can you also get the rear end centered under the body?
 

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Discussion Starter #707
MPTech & JoeE - Thanks gents, I will look into the corner scale balance.

There isn't much adjustment available in the rear suspension, as it is a 1980 car but a 1970s design. :rolleyes:

Plus I need to put a few miles on the car to loosen up the rear end a bit, as it has been on blocks for most of the last six months.

The location of the rear wheel arches relative to the wheels is my own error.

As I re-shaped the arches before getting the rear wheels aligned, a text book schoolboy error. :sad:

Mind you, if you look closely, you will find quite a few symmetry issues which I have just learned to live with.

Cheers, Paul. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #708
A few more photos:
I got some replacement racing numbers that are a bit smaller than the original ones.
( In the hope they will be easier to fit over the contours of the cockpit sides. )



Thankfully, I had no problems with the numbers this time and the original was replaced on the passenger side.

Which was a good excuse to head out and take a few more photos.











It still looks like a small child when compared to the ‘grown up’ cars in the parking lot. ;)



But every mile driven helps make all the effort worthwhile. :cool:

Cheers, Paul. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #709
Just in time…
I picked up a hacking cough and head cold at the start of December which kept me out a car with no roof. :rolleyes:

Eventually I was feeling well enough for a quick blast on a very crisp Winter’s day.

The sun was shining, but it was only around 37 degrees Fahrenheit, with a real wind chill as well. :eek:





However, this was the scene outside today.



Therefore, there will be no more driving for me until all the salt/grit spread on the roads has been washed away.

So I'll leave you with this photo from the bottom of my back garden. :cool:



Until next time, take care, Paul. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #710
Merry Christmas – Part 1
Just a quick (ish) update from me…

The same guy who sent me the Lucas rear lights sent me a matching pair of old Lucas reflectors. :cool:



The only problem was that my current reflectors are fitted with LEDs to double up as my fog lights.



So I had to reprofile both the LED reflector and the Lucas rubber mount so they matched.





There was only one small problem with this arrangement…

The extra layer of old Lucas rubber meant there wasn’t much thread to play with on the LED fixing bolt.

I then proceeded to make this small problem much worse…

By over tightening the nut and completely pulling the bolt out of the reflector’s plastic back. :cursing:



As a temporary measure, I had to drill a hole in the reflector and hold it in place with a small nut and bolt.



Although, as expected, drilling a hole broke the LED circuit board and the light stopped working. :rolleyes:



Note:
This is more about the legal requirement to have a fog light than any plans to drive in fog! :eek:

So I ordered another LED reflector, reshaped that as before and then tried very hard not to overtighten it.
( Excuse the poor photo, but I was working by street light yesterday evening when fitting this. )



End of Part 1…
 

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Discussion Starter #711
Triumph Swordfish 1500

Merry Christmas – Part 2
When it has not been snowing, raining or foggy, I have been out and about…







I did get one crisp winter’s day, which gave me this 'arty' shot as the sun was setting. :cool:



So that just leaves "One more sleep 'til Christmas."



Merry Christmas Everyone, take care, Paul. :xmas:
 

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Paul, didn't know if you saw this post, but I immediately thought of your build! Very cool car like yours
1957 Falcon MKII

might give you some ideas for future upgrades (you know you're not done building yet, right? :wink2:)
 

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Discussion Starter #713
MPTech - Thanks for the link. :cool:

I've just come back from a short family vacation and am slowly catching up.

It is good to see that my car does resemble original cars from that era. :D

There is definitely a list of upgrades for my car, which include:
- Tonneau cover.
- Headrest 'pads' for the aero humps.
- Side mirror plinths to improve rear vision.
- Some alloy panelling inside the cockpit.

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Happy New Year!
Here are some photos I took on 1st January before we went on vacation.







I also took this size comparison photo while I was there.



Given the snow and icy cold weather that has just hit the East Coast of the US, I wont mention it was a bit 'fresh' out while driving. ;)

Hope you all have a great 2018.

Take care, Paul. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #715
Forbye4 – Apologies for the delay in replying, but cheers Mike. :cool:

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January Update
The middle of Winter isn’t the best time for open top motoring.



Also, at some point I will have to sort out an oil leak / oil burning problem. :sad:

But for now, I just have to check / top up the oil on a regular basis.





To be honest, opening the hood still makes me smile knowing I made the hinges myself. :cool:

Although, it does reminds me that inner front wheel arches are on my ‘To Do’ list.

As there is mud everywhere. :rolleyes:



Don’t get me wrong, I’m still enjoying driving the car even in the cold weather.






But I am really looking forward to the Summer months.

Until next time, take care, Paul. :)
 

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Paul-

Car looks great, even in the cold weather pics! I really enjoy reading how much you enjoy your car; it makes me smile every time.

I also think its funny how we never finish these cars, as I read your to-do list. I haven't yet told my wife that after I am done, I am not done. At least she will know where I am -- still in the garage!

Hoping for some warmer weather, as you are. Even though I am here in the South, I think I have grown a bot soft as I have gotten older.

I look forward to your next update! All the best...

Regards,

Steve
 

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Discussion Starter #717 (Edited)
Triumph Swordfish 1500

WIS89 – Cheers Steve. :cool:

Thankfully, driving the car helps me re-charge my enthusiasm for tackling the remaining odd jobs.

As, unfortunately, the years spent struggling to build the car really took their toll on me in the end.

Mind you, I am also finding age is making me notice the cold a lot more that I did in my youth. :rolleyes:
( I racked up almost 20 years on motorcycles in all weather, I was even dumb enough to ride in snow! )

But this was me earlier today.
( Just a couple of degrees above freezing and the exposed part of my face is COLD! )



All today's photos were extracted from my GoPro in video mode.

I have to work my way through some built up areas…



Before I finally get onto the open road. :cool:



I even tried another 'Italian Job' angle for a sequel to my first car video.



Until next time, take care, Paul. :)

PS
I’ve got a long night ahead of me, as the SuperBowl doesn’t kick off until 11.30pm UK time.
I also have to sleep downstairs to avoid waking the rest of my family when the game finally ends.
( Which is at Silly O’Clock in the morning over here. )
 

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Discussion Starter #718
Triumph Swordfish 1500

Short Sharp Drive
You know it is going to be a cold trip when there are still snowflakes on the car cover before you leave.



Don't let the sunshine fool you, the wind chill was biting on exposed roads.







Note:
The rear arch in the photo above highlights the 'milky' finish that has appeared on the paint. :sad:
This is something I will be tackling when the warm weather finally returns.

Mind you, I did like this ray of sunshine when I was filling up with gas.



And I still enjoy car parks.



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Photobucket Ransom Demand
Like many on here, a large chuck of my build thread was infected (& therefore ruined) by this image. :cursing:



So over the last few days I finally started the process of reloading photos and updating links.

I’ve only got as far as page 7, but that included over 370 photos, which has taken me hours to do.

Thankfully, I had only used Photobucket for the early stages of my build, but it is still a major pain.

So I hope someone, somewhere, is sticking pins in the [*Expletives*] at Photobucket.



;)

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But to end on a more positive note…

Going back through the early years of this build, it really is beyond belief that I have this car on the road.

The list of problems I had to overcome really was never ending and I went down a lot of blind alleys too.

Also, I can see how my welding, fibreglass & fabrication skills improved massively as the build went on.

So whilst I know the car is not perfect, I am still very proud of what I have achieved given the circumstances.

Until next time, take care, Paul. :)
 

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So whilst I know the car is not perfect, I am still very proud of what I have achieved given the circumstances.
And rightfully so!
 

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Thanks for the amazing journey Paul. Wow! almost 5 years! Goes by fast doesn't it?
I think you're car turned out great, it's a wonderful experience to build then DRIVE your own build! Very rewarding. And talking to interested parties is always fun. Just curious, what have been some of the funniest things folks have guessed your car is?
I've had people guess my 427 roadster is a Corvette (multiple times), Austin Healy, MG, and even a Karman Ghia! :laugh2:
I was filling up at a gas station one time and got engaged with a guy that was just enamored with my car. After we talked a bit, I asked if he wanted to sit in it and I'd take his picture for him. He was almost speechless, then after he got out he almost shook my arm off thanking me. Little kids love them too and I'm amazed at how knowledgeable some little guys are.
Always fun, everytime I start it up! Hope you're enjoying the same experience.

BTW, recognizing how much your skills and knowledge have improved, just imagine how good your NEXT BUILD will be!!!
:wink2: :laugh2:

btw, if you're ever in the Midwest (or planning to), give me a PM, would love to catch up with you and introduce you to our club. (and let you drive a left-hander!)

Take care and keep us posted on your modifications!
 
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