End of session November 10: What else can we say? YEEHAA !!!
With only short notice of the relocation on the web site and some e-mail messages, the July 14 session drew 9 members to get the new work location off to a good start. Substantial work was done on Engine assembly, engine bay cleaning and painting, body primer smoothing and wet sanding.
Outside work started with a good cleanout of the car, then first pass painting of the engine bay. Progress was made on some filling and smoothing and considerable wet sanding of the outer body. As things were going well we had pizza and cokes delivered for lunch break. Working under the shade tree was nice by mid afternoon.
Some people were out of town on July 21st for the camping trip to Road America or other personal business, but six members came out to push the project along some more. A bit more work was done on the engine with fasteners and torquing of the cylinder head. More progress was made on wet sanding and body smoothing.
For the July 28 session we had six club members working their tails off for the better part of of six hours. Most attention was being paid to a few small spots needing final leveling, and lots of pinholes needing glazing and sanding. By day's end the car is smooth all over, all one color, blessed as "good enough" and ready for painting. The last half hour was spent wiping down the body, vacuuming and washing out the interior and boot, cleaning up the dashboard and steering wheel.
On August 4 we were slightly low on hands with only four people to move it along. Still we managed to apply a second coat of yellow paint in critical parts of the engine bay and install the pedal box assembly, heater box, washer bottl, some wiring, and alittle more engine work.
On August 18 we hand more help with 8 people at one point. We got the engine off the stand, got the engine back plate and flywheel cleaned up along with engine rear gasket surface, and got the rear plate and flywheel and clutch installed along with other new gaskets and seals. In short order we had the gearbox mated to the engine most of the gearbox rear mouting parts assembled, and were dropping whole assembly into the car. By day's end the engine and gearbox were bolted down securely on the mounts, and we are getting close to painting day. Next session is set for September 1st, hoping for a quick once over with 400 grit wet paper just before painting. If all goes well the car can be out for painting while we have a couple of weekends scheduled for fun car events.
September 1: Six people made short work of final 400 grit wet sanding in preparation for body painting. Rear brakes assembly, doors installed, and other minor touch ups.
September 17: Two people doing door alignment, bonnet gutter cleaning, and other minor touch up.
September 19: Project car gets a trailer ride to paint shop in Glen Ellyn.
September 26: "I'M BACK, and I'm Chartreuse again!" Give it a week for paint to cure before wet sanding and buffing. Meanwhile we can do some assembly work on Saturday. Bring clean cotton gloves.
September 29 turned out to be the very best working day of the entire year, 66dF in the morning getting to 78dF by mid afternoon, mostly sunny and a nice light breeze. We had 8 people pushing tools fairly steady, with a few hanging in past 4pm. The fresh yellow paint was the poison frog today, no touch, so we were into mechanical work. Mount clutch slave cylinder, steel line and hose, install starter motor and associated wiring, oil filter mount and hose, heater valve, speedo cable, chase threads and install manifold studs and catalytic converter studs, a little paint touch up under the bonnet, install electric fans and fan guard, fill and bleed all hydraulics, connect and adjust hand brake cable, install propshaft, clean and prime four wheels (top paint to be done 24 hours later). It was a very productive day. At day's end we had four spare wheels on the car to roll it back indoors.
October 6 had a low turnout, only three people, not sure why as it was a nice day with temperature in the 70's in the morning. We spent the entire day wet sanding and buffing the new paint, starting with a half hour of fiddling with a miniature paint file to trim away bits of dust and grit and remove the tops of a few paint drips. We then ran 2000 grit wet paper for about 4 hours. That was enough to take the tops off of the orange peel, but not enough to make the surface completely flat. With the limited staff available we declared that good enough, as we were determined to finish the job by day's end. This was followed by a couple of hours of buffing with diamond cut rubbing compound. That worked well to remove the buff finish from sanding and cut the corners off of the flat top plateau of the orange peel bumps. Result was a much reduced orange peel effect, hardly noticeable from a step away, but leaving a little "character" to the surface. Final step was an hour or more of buffing with a finer polishing compound to remove swirl marks from the cutting process leaving a nice shine and very respectable finish (quite appreciable for a few amature paint finishers). We then gave it a thorough wash down with detergent and water to remove any remaining buffing compound, finally finishing the job at 5 pm. Pretty spiffy! What a difference a day makes.
October 20, cool and breezy in the morning, we moved the car into the workshop for easy access to air and electric and all the handy tools. Temperature quickly jumped into the low 70's, light breeze and T-shirt weather. Nine people worked diligently for at least 5 hours (not counting lunch break), and a few people kept on to 5 pm, so we got lots done. Front and rear bumpers, manifolds, carburetors, catalytic converter, exhaust hookup, bonnet rear seal, wiper spindle trim, new fender bolts, finish of gearbox mount, and speedometer cable.
Someone did a lot of buffing and polishing on the bright trim and got that installed. All exterior lighting fixtures, door handles, vent windows, windlass strips, window tracks, lifts and glass were installed. Cockpit rear trim, dash top cover and windscreen rounded out the day, along with numerous small tasks on the sly.
We ordered up pizza and sodas for a quick lunch to keep on working, taking a few minutes to browse around the visiting cars. I count nine cars in this picture, two of them live here, but a couple others are hidden. By day's end we have a car that looks a lot like a rubber bumper MGB again, and far fewer boxes of loose parts.
October 27, six people wield wrenches for six hours relaigning doors to work smoothly, installing all interior panels, carpeting and trim bits. Under bonnet all accessory parts are installed except one water hose and a cable or two. This car is now only a few hours away from driving out of the garage under its own power for the first time in 20 years.
November 1, wheel wells were undercoated and the black painted wheels installed.
November 3, at least ten people attended for enough finishing touches to get the car running. The last few hoses were installed, throttle cable connected, coolant and engine oil and gearbox oil filled, differential oil changed, shift lever and boot installed, heater control cables hooked up and dash console secured. Rear license bracket and lamps were installed along with the boot lock. Battery and a grounding cable between gearbox and chassis were installed to enable engine cranking. The original electronic distributor gave no spark, so that was set aside and a substitute points distributor temporarily installed. A new Facet fuel pump was installed and fuel added to the tank. That got the engine running for a few minutes until the new fuel pump quit working and stalled both the engine and the enthusiasm for the day. It was that close to going for a test drive. Hey, time for an ale anyway.