A Special Builder's Notes


The Special Builder's Breakfast Club

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23 December 2013

Another Step Forward.

And, as usual, in my enthusiasm, I've forgotten to recess the two bits of ply that go either side of the rear spine so that they lie flush with the metal. To take them off to do the job quickly and easily would mean taking everything apart again.  If I try to do the job on the job, so to speak, I risk the chisel-through-the-finger scenario. I'm still thinking about that.

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But, if I think that I've been busy, I need to think again. There's been no pause for breath at the premises of The Great Collector as the Rover I pictured a couple of weeks ago has been stripped down, the paintwork tidied up and made sound; the single cylinder's been removed, valves attended to and I hear the body's back on and only the mag and trembler coil are left to sort out.

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And in amongst all this activity he slipped off when no one was looking and came back with this charming little Swift! A touch of restraint in the gold-lining department would have been to advantage but otherwise it's a very pretty and nicely put together little cyclecar.

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The assembly of the spare wheel carrier required the assembly of the tank as they share common supports. I made up a new face for the fuel gauge, polished up the fuel tap and put it all back together again. The carrier and the tank with their various straps and brackets went together more easily than I was expecting - it looked a bit like a Chinese puzzle at first.

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It was a bit dopey of me not to recess the ply beforehand. The other thing I must do is order some bolts with the correct grip-length for the base plate that attaches to the chassis - I'm using aircraft quality bolts for that assembly.

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I think the angle is about right and although the spare wheel will detract slightly from the overall look, as there was no-where else to put it, it'll have to do. I tell myself that the extra weight over the back wheels far outweighs any aesthetic consideration. Well, I would, wouldn't I.

So, before Christmas Day I want to have the plywood for the spare wheel carrier sorted out, cut out a floor panel for the rear part of the body, get the fuel line in and plug up a slight leak in the drain tap of the brake reservoir. I've already mounted the Facet fuel pump and Learned Counsel has bunged me a bit of braided fuel pipe to do the connections. Which reminds me, the fuel tap has also to be mounted and connected up and that means I've got to make up a steel bracket for the tap; more detail work.

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Besides the spare wheel, the other difficulty has always been the placement of the battery. The only area inside the car is behind the seats - a nuisance because it would take up quite a lot of what little space there is for luggage and anyway, only a contortionist would be able to get at it. There's not enough space to put it under the floorboards at the front and to mount it on the chassis at the back of the car puts it too close to the fuel tank for my liking. The only other practical place is on the offside wing. If the box is painted the same colour as the body, it should blend in and not spoil the line of the wing.

If I get any of this done before the New Year it'll be a step forward.

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