Monday, 1 July 2013

July 2013. Blue car goes to bodyshop/ red car MOT

Looks OK from a distance. The hardtop is on because I took the hood off to aid welding. 
1st July.  After all the dramas getting fuel tank sorted for the MOT I took the car down to the bodyshop today.    It was not without last minute dramas however.  Drove it out of the garage OK and parked it to go indoors and collect phone, money etc.  Got back in to drive off and it would not start, no sparks at all.

Bit of a Victor Meldrew moment -  I DON'T BELIEVE IT!!.

It had cut out randomly on me a few times before.  No other symptoms just a sudden cut like you switched off but it had always re-started immediately. I had previously found a loose earth connection for the Lumenition and thought that was the problem but it obviously was not. At least now with a total failure I was able to do some proper fault finding. Following the Lumenition diagnostics that I was able to print off their website I finally tracked it down using a voltmeter to the optical unit in the distributor.
Good news - I had a spare.
Bad news - the distributor had to come out to fit it.
So instead of a quick drive to the bodyshop I spent the whole day taking out and replacing the distributor.

Finished the job at 4:30pm and it runs fine now, so was able to deliver it after all.  Phew !!
Reasons for the work can be seen in the pictures below.

Nearside wing

Offside wing

Nearside wheelarch trouble

July 11th.   The bodyshop has started work on the blue car now and revealed some of the gory details

Outer wheel arch cut away to reveal rusty inner
We found the previous arch repair panel had barely been welded at all !

Rusted inner arch and sill sections now removed
ready to install new repair panels


Closeup of lower wing area 
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Old Red car update July 12th.  


July 2013 - looks OK from here
Like I said in a previous post, the intention is to get the blue car bodywork up to a decent standard and then swap my good oily bits over from the old red car I have had since 2002. Because of the limited garage space this means I need to keep the red one road legal long enough to swap the bits over. After that the body can be stripped of any useful stuff and scrapped.  There is an MOT coming up later this month so I was having a poke around and guess what I found, see the picture

Nasty surprise in the nearside sill
Its going to need a quick repair job to get an MOT test.  Not what I needed just now.

Latest news: sill has been patched and the car has a new MOT so its road legal for another year - or as long as I need it to be until I nick all the good bits off it!
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One of those good bits will be a neat finisher for the top of the gear lever gaiter. The original rubber ones on most TR7's have given up long ago but a guy called William Parris in the USA was making some replacements and sent me one.
William Parris finisher fitted below the wooden gearknob.


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Blue car update  17th July.

Popped into the body shop for a look at how they are getting on.  The offside wheel arch metalwork is now finished, just waiting for its skim of filler etc.  They showed me the old arch that a previous repairer had fitted and turns out it was only just welded in a couple of spots, the rest was done with seam sealer. Not good.

New inner arch fitted

Right side outer panels now fitted
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Left side outer panels fitted ready for filler and paint


The guys in the body shop did moan to me that the repair panels I supplied didn't fit too well. Apparently they had to make at least four cuts in the inner wing repair panels to get them anywhere near to correct shape so that is not good to hear.  Because of stock problems I had bought one of them from Rimmers and one from Robsport so seems the suppliers to both are equally bad - or is it the same source?

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Update  21st August.  Not too much progress to report, bodyshop boys have been on holidays and working on new car accident stuff so the TR has been mostly gathering dust but it has had a first coat of primer and a contrast mist coat to show any imperfections up before final colour is applied.

Right side before final wet & dry

Left side before final wet & dry
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30th August update:   Called by the bodyshop today to see if there was any progress and found the final primer was on and flatted back ready to paint.  Seems they had the car set up in the spraybooth ready to paint yesterday and when they went to mix the paint they found the paint code is wrong.  Turns out the one on the car says its Persian Aqua but of course it isn't.  
Apparently when it was "restored" by a previous owner years ago they changed the colour at the same time. My boys sent the bootlid to their paint supplier who scanned it to identify the real colour and paint is now ready to go. Should get painted over the weekend.

Here it is, stonechipped and ready for paint.