With Christmas around the corner work on the Midget has been a little less focused recently. We finished replacing all the suspension bushes which took longer than expected.
The car was lowered and its weight compressed the spring enough to allow the damper to be bolted in place. Once reassembled the front suspension was lubricated with a grease gun.
The whole job would have been easier with a transmission stand like the one on the left but I am so tight I made one out of a spare wheel and an Acrow prop.
Today I continued working on the back of the car making up small panels were the old had rusted out. Not much fun this. Upside down welding and a padded shirt are a dangerous combination but at least I was warm as my shirt went up in flames.
Last weekend was fun as I was asked to take a look at a possible future project.
A 1996 Rover Mini. The plan for this is to strip it out, roll cage and fibreglass flip front. This is booked in after the Midget so should start in summer 2017. John the owner has already started the strip down in anticipation.
Hopefully I will be able to crack on with the midget build during the christmas holidays.
Now the outer panels were in place I needed to make up new closure panels for the inside.
I started by making up a new panel behind the rear wheel. An old friend came round to film me working for a project he is working on so this week the quality of pics will be much better than usual. Don’t get used to it..
The sheet steel was offered up and marked up. This was then cut and shaped.
And again checked for size.
This panel needed a flange down the curved side so this was started using a pair of pliers…
Which gives a rough puckered flange (sounds painful !)…
A hammer and dolly are then used to persuade the metal into shape. This takes a bit of persistence…
The finished panel looks like this.
But you have to shine it up for the camera.
The panel was then offered up and welded in place.
Now I know that the original panel had the flange the other way for ease of assembly in the factory but I prefer this way as you do not end up with a ledge for the mud to sit on. This panel is directly behind the rear wheel so has loads of stuff thrown at it.
I’m a Realist not a Purist…
The panel is then seam sealed using polyurethane sealant.
Now looks like this.
Whilst all this has been going on all the suspension bushes have been replaced, the brakes rebuilt and the car lowered to chrome bumper spec.
Still plenty of bodywork to go but the restoration is progressing nicely.