Posts in 2018 Rebuild 1
Oil Tank

Moving on to the oil system, I've made a start on cleaning up the oil tank.

Turns out it's copper plated, which I dimly knew was sometimes done, but thought it only applied to special cars like RSRs.

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The tank is now away being stripped, acid dipped and copper plated.

The strip and dip will make me feel more comfortable connecting this thing directly to my newly-rebuilt engine - need to be rid of any crud and rust. I will admit that the copper part is completely pointless overkill, given that it will be obscured by some black paint. But I will know it's copper plated under there, and maybe one day a bit of paint will rub off and (if I have my head under the rear wheel arch for some reason) I will feel like a restoration genius. Not like a weirdo at all.

Progress; Electrical

Electrics, other than the engine bay loom, are fitted and tested:

And overall it's starting to look a bit more like a car, and a bit less like a bare shell:

2018 Rebuild 1Richard Fry
Progress: Suspension and Brakes

I've made modest progress on the suspension and brakes. They are "nearly" done.

Being RHD there are hard lines across the luggage compartment from the reservoir, which then join to the master cylinder via some short soft lines and kinked hard lines, behind the pedal box. A bit convoluted.

In summary most of this lot is now on the car. With the predictable side effect that it is no longer cluttering up every shelf in my garage / shed / house. Feels like progress.

Meanwhile, back in 2018

After some rock & roll excitement from the 1970s, back in 2018 we turn our minds to something a little more prosaic.

Today, I have mostly been making brake lines.

This may seem unnecessarily masochistic, when pre-bent kits are available from various places. I went DIY partly for entertainment value - pipe bending is another curiously satisfying pastime, and there's the extra fun of brake pedal roulette when it's time to use them.

The other reason was material choice. Pre-made pipes seem to be either mild steel (plain or coated), copper or kunifer (copper-nickel alloy). I'll admit that kunifer is probably the best stuff for the job, but without wishing to offend anyone who is using this excellent material, to me it looks wrong on an early car.

So I've gone with annealed stainless steel, which is also wrong, but looks a bit less offensive to my delicate eyes. It's not bad at all to work with, although a bit tougher than kunifer.

Suspension

More lovely fresh painted / plated / otherwise refurbished bits ready to bolt on. Fenn Lane Motorport did most of the refurbishment here. They are particularly good at steering racks, but the suspension parts have also turned out very nicely. Thanks Chris et al!

Pedal Cluster

Here's the rufurbished pedal cluster. Being RHD it has some slightly weird and wonderful extension rods, to bridge the gap from the accelerator and clutch pedals to the centre tunnel (much simpler in the LHD version).

As well as the plating and paint, it has new bushes and springs. Chris at Fenn Lane Motorsport makes them (including the NLA RHD clutch helper spring). So this is the first of probably many opportunities for me to say "thanks" to Chris.

Just for fun I'll bung in a link... http://www.fennlane.co.uk
... but it's possible that the website will still be under construction.
You may be thinking "I didn't know Chris was making those". It's additionally possible that I will mention a few more things you didn't know he makes. Lots of engineering at Fenn Lane, not so much marketing.

Anyway, let's have some pedal photos:

MFI "speed switch" control from CDI+

As you know, the MFI pump has a solenoid which operates a fuel cut off. The principle is that, on a trailing throttle at higher revs, the unit stops pumping fuel into the engine. Anyone who has followed an MFI car on which it's not working (fairly common fault) will recognise the bangs, pops and occasional flames. Quite cool, but not especially good for the engine.

One component of the system is the "speed switch", which detects when the revs are above approx 1500 rpm. Above that level, when the throttle closes (detected by a microswitch), the MFI solenoid should energise and the fuel shut off. On the way back down the revs, below 1300 rpm the solenoid needs to de-energise to resume fuelling and prevent the engine from stalling.

The CDI+ unit from Classic Retrofit offers a (programmable) replacement for the speed switch.

There's a wire coming out of the CDI+ box:

Porsche CDI speed switch control

Which needs to be connected to the microswitch + solenoid via a 40A relay, thus:

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40A relays are readily available. Mine is a little grey Hella one which should really live in a Skoda:

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I know what you're thinking, that looks crap and why did you choose that ugly relay? Answer: because it fits into an old speed switch case. Stealthy:

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Output programmable via the CDI+ software:

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I've tested the microswitch and solenoid, all fine, so I reckon we should be in good shape for working fuel cut-off.

It's all plug and play, no butchering of the loom required, so could easily revert. Thanks to Jonny (DDK-er and owner of Classic Retrofit who make the CDI+) for the help and exemplary technical support.

And that, in a nutshell, is the kind of mod I'm doing. Criteria:

  • Easily reversible
  • Makes the car work better (higher performance or more reliable), or look cooler
  • Does not change the character of the car. A 2.2S is fine for me. In this case the way it feels (apart from the soft limiter) should be exactly the same as an MFI car on which the CDI, coil, distributor and speed switch are all working perfectly.
  • Aesthetically hard to detect, or deliberately different in a way that I think looks better.
CDI+

The next part of the electrical sort-out was the panel in the engine bay. The one with the CDI box, rectifier, couple of relays, "speed switch" etc.

Here's what came with the car:

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Today it looks like this, which is quite nice but not the interesting part....

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The interesting (to me) part is that I'm using a CDI+ box, having enjoyed good results with the one in my 69 car. The CDI+ is a CDI box replacement from www.classicretrofit.com; modern digital electronics and programmable ignition curve. I went for the Stealth version, built into a Bosch original case. I'm going a step further this time and locking the distributor, so the CDI+ is responsible for the advance curve.

For my car, the distributor is a Bosch 007. Standard advance curve for that is:

Bosch 0231159007 Advance.jpg

It's pretty easy to get the same curve into CDI+, as a starting point:

CDI+ screenshot.jpg

Please ignore the deliberate mistake - I've gone beyond the available adjust room for the amount of initial physical advance (hence my curve goes into the red area of the graph). I took the screenshot before I'd finished fiddling about.

Note also a few useful bells and whistles. On my other car I particularly like the soft limiter - much more civilised than the all-or-nothing mechanical limiter (spring in the rotor arm).

Click here for the full restoration story...

Dash

Next, a slightly strange job on the dashboard.

RHD dashes of correct quality were / are not available, so mine is being refurbished by the incomparable Garry at Classic FX

It seemed salvageable, the main problem being that the speaker hole had been filled in. It looked as if a previous owner had it reworked by a company that uses vacuum-forming type techniques to attach the vinyl - the many small holes are the clue.

Garry was not overly keen to make a hole that I (already earmarked as an annoyingly picky customer, for some reason ...) might suggest was half a millimetre out of position and throw a hissy fit. So he kindly let me take some measurements from another dash, following which I measured many times, cut once, and ended up with a hole that seems to fit my nice original speaker grille. Dremel with router bit was the tool of choice.

After which my dash went off to be re-covered. Here are a couple of pics of the finished article.

With many thanks to Garry.

2018 Rebuild 1Richard Fry
Wiring Loom

There's not been much progress, but I have spent many a happy hour sorting out the wiring loom.

The car's original loom was included when I bought it. Looked like this:

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Hmmmmm....

There were various hacks and bodges, with the fuse panel area being particularly hideous. The original fuse banks had been replaced with blade fuses, in a slightly agricultural style:

This might not be everyone's idea of fun, but I've found it immensely satisfying to faff about very slowly at my workbench sorting it all out.

The front loom is now done, including a bench test with switches, headlights, indicators, wiper motor, heater fan etc attached.

2018 Rebuild 1Richard Fry