A Special Builder's Notes


The Special Builder's Breakfast Club

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30 January 2022

Lost & Found.

The new position for the oil filler neck on the cam cover of the MS engine was determined and I set up the cover in the mill ready for the nail-biting hole cutting operation. It's the sort of game that usually goes wrong on me as the material jumps out of the clamps and the cutter chaws its way through the bit I need to preserve.

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I was greatly relieved that by taking it very slowly, even at an angle of 25°, the pilot drill stayed steady, and the body of the cutter followed through without fuss. All was well with the world - except that I'd put the hole in the wrong place and a cam bearing pillar was now partially obstructing the filler neck. Some things never change.

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I also decided that I didn't much care for the flip-top 'Monaco' filler cap that threaded onto the top of the neck. I trimmed off the threads in the lathe and drilled the neck with three holes: two for the original cap's clips and one further down the neck for the cap's retaining chain.

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George did the honours with the welding. The rivets that the cap engages with to hold it in place were cut to length using a tool that I remembered I had from my aircraft building days.

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An old pair of pliers is drilled to accommodate assorted sizes of rivet and eyeballing the length required using the hinge centreline as reference, closing the pliers snips off the surplus. It's possible to neatly shave off as little as 1/32" with this method. Beats trying to cut one down with a saw.

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The handbrake arrangement is now more secure in its housing having substituted the bolts and spacers for a length of 1"x1" square tube. The bottom of the lever where the cable is retained was cut off and repositioned to give a straighter run. You may recall that I'd last week devised a complicated system to clamp the cable to the lever when, looking at it now I realise that I can open out the bottom drilling, drill a hole in a bolt, pass the cable through that hole and clamp it up with a nut. The advantage of this will be the ease of adjustment as the cable stretches.

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The Great Collector's Sunbeam continues to run roughly. Going through the simple stuff first, we renewed the plug leads and caps. Then took the magneto off and discovered a gap of at least .050" at the points. Reducing this to .015" was effective and we were able to set the vernier coupling back to its original position - not without having got it all 180° out first (as usual). The new sparkly plug thingies lit up in proper order, but the strobe showed the ignition was not consistently on the mark. A new distributor cap, points cap, and rotor arm is on order - they all have seen better days.

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A mystery sporting moped of unknown origin has recently emerged from the estate of Messrs Awkward & Co. Quite a find.

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next post I'll Hang Onto That.


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