A Long Job.
I'm resigned to the fact that the Alvis Special is going to take some time - possibly 5 years (another 1/4 million words) so I need to make sure that I do something, however small, whenever the opportunity presents itself. Having cut the foam profile, I needed then to get the wing and the rear mudguard in the right places so I could start carving in three dimensions.
I removed that portion from the template, pinned it to the profile....
.... then set about trying to cut the foam with an electric carving knife. No good. An ordinary carving knife - no good. A hacksaw blade - better, but too slow. Dreamt up a hot wire thingummyjig - too complicated. Then I remembered a tool that I'd bought in Aldi, a vibrating saw. Perfect. In the kit there was a plain chamfered blade, almost a knife, and that was the one to use (the toothed blades ripped the foam and clogged up).
One snag, you could go wrong all too quickly.....
... and then again. At the moment, the model is a bit bloated in some areas, notably the wings, and reminiscent of a Triumph Roadster - not a look I want. I was leafing through a book the other day and tripped over a front view of a Delahaye and noticed that the wings had a ridge along the top where the metal changed direction. I'm going to give that a go - the model definitely needs to lose some weight and sharpen up.
You can look at something for only so long without making more mistakes so, it was time for a change of scenery and to tackle the Minor 4-speed gearbox which had lain on the bench for a couple of months. I couldn't for the life of me remember the reassembly sequence from the last box I rebuilt - all that I recall was that it took all day to get the helical gears on the layshaft to mesh with the corresponding gears on the mainshaft and that everything seemed to have to go in at the same time. I tried another strategy.
I popped the mainshaft and selector rods in and secured the back plate. Then the first motion and layshafts had to go in at the same time as they overlap.
Then it's just a question of getting the gears meshed. After about three hours rattling and twisting the two shafts - you're working blind on this - suddenly everything comes together and you can pop the bell-housing on and tighten it all down.
After congratulating yourself on a job well done, you tidy up and find that this spacing washer has dropped out of the layshaft bearing. Go back to jail.
Finally, after a few more 'gotcha's' - the tab washers on the inside face of the bell-housing not doing their job properly and falling into the box (a spot of weld on each nut and tab, settled their hash) and the mainshaft seizing up when the bell-housing was tightened down (the new front bearing not fully home) - it was finished.
I managed by mistake, to cut off a bit at the back of the model. It's now not quite as long as I'd planned.