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Learning how to build Lotus Seven replicas...together!
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PostPosted: Sat Dec 31, 2011 1:59 pm 
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I based the assumption on the photos, where the nuts look like standard hardware rather than specificaly for use with the unistrut.

Whether the seat would slide, rotate, or both depends on many things including the seats resistance to sliding on the unistrut, but it sounds like it is not an issue.

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PostPosted: Sat Dec 31, 2011 2:35 pm 
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I guess its because deep down I am a jerk but..............if you wanted to "OH I DONT KNOW" build a stainless chassis.
Unistrut is available in most stainless grades also. Honestly though as a pipefitter we have hung masive amounts off of unistrut and it doesnt slip . If you have any slip concerns the slip amounts increase dramatically with every size increase. 4 x1/2inch unistrut spring nuts and that seat isnt going anywhere!

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 09, 2012 10:01 pm 
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Been a while since I last posted. I finally started back on the pedal and steering column setup. Orginally thought I could re-use the Miata pedals and brake booster but packaging just did not fit well. I therefore bought a Wilwood pedal assembly. This is the new version with adjustable pads which allowed me to shift the assembly over just enough for the steering column to fit between the brake and clutch. The Miata assembly had pretty big offsets in the pedals to clear the steering column. I also fabricated a removable craddle for the pedals assembly and steering shaft. I'm not finished with it yet but it worked out really nice. I also believe I can use the Miata gauge cluster and shrould.
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File comment: Pedal assembly and streering column craddle.
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File comment: Pedal spacing worked out just right. No room to spare.
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PostPosted: Mon Apr 09, 2012 11:26 pm 
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Now it appears to me that with the bracket you made you could very easily have made the pedals adjustable. Just have the whole carrier on a screw drive, whether it way hand cranked or motor driven.

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PostPosted: Tue Apr 10, 2012 7:52 am 
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I had the same thought looking at this craddle on the floor. It never fails to amaze me after I spend so much time trying to work out the perfect solution. It is not until you have welded something that the light goes off. One thing I did not want to happen was to weld everything to the frame and then find out I needed to move the pedals an inch or so. Therefore I made the craddle to bolt in, which will aid in assemly and maintenance. It would however be quite easy to fabricate the unit to have the pedals adjustable. Maybe version 2 will incorporate the extra Uni-strut I have laying around from the seat rails.


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PostPosted: Sun May 06, 2012 9:21 pm 
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Took the pedal/steering shaft cradle and lightened it up a little.
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PostPosted: Fri May 11, 2012 10:27 pm 
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Finally got around to shortening the steering rack. I decided to cut and weld the shaft versus cutting an re-threading the end. I was not sure if the original end was swaged down and had rolled threads so I decided to keep the original end. I also machined a tight fitting inner rod to provide a nice root opening for the root pass. Plus, it keeps the shaft straight. I am not at all concerned about welding the shaft as I do not believe the shaft is heat treated or surface hardened. I do expect the gear section to be heat treated but there is really no benefit of heat treating beyond the gear section. Plus, you can see where the gear section appears to have been friction welded to the end tubes. Also, the tube surface scratched real easy which does not imply surface hardnening.
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File comment: Donor miata came with a manual rack
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File comment: Disassembled
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File comment: Had to cut quite a lot off
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File comment: Tack welded to ends
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File comment: Shaft cut with inner rod
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File comment: Root pass
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File comment: Re-assembled and all cleaned up.
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PostPosted: Sun May 27, 2012 8:26 pm 
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Now it is time to set the rack in the frame and determine where it needs to be is relationship to the suspension. Bump steer is a concern so I took a 1/4" thick piece of aluminum I had laying around and made a bump steer plate. With the rack at it's lowest point, I am getting toe in on compression and toe out in rebound. therefore, I now will add shims to raise the rack.
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File comment: Homemade bump steer plate
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 01, 2012 4:19 pm 
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With a lot of patience working with the bump steer plate, I was able to get the bump steer reduced signifcantly from the original position of the rack. This will now allow me to fix the steering rack mounts. I prefer to have no toe out but the measurements are so close, I am happy as is for right now. I expect once I get the car on the road, I can then tell if I need to add a little shim under the rack.
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 9:33 pm 
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Assembled the front suspension to see how it looks. Additional bracing is needed but I pleased with the way everything is going together.
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PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2012 11:58 am 
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Maybe it's the angle of the pictures or maybe I'm just stoopid, but is the 2nd layer of tubing at the top of the frame just a spacer to move the top of the shock out a little?

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 05, 2012 1:24 pm 
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Well...it goes like this. I bought the nose cone before I finalized on the front section of the frame to ensure the frame rails lined up with the cone. Guess what, after welding, they did not align as I thought so I ended up changing the end tubes (making the front more square) and adding a short side tube as shown, which is hidden when the nose cone is installed. The nose cone now blends in to the side pretty nicely.

Not knowing how the shocks were going to be mounted, it actually turned out as a positive modification since it stiffens up the mount area as I had to cut into this tube so the shock bracket was perpendicular.


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 09, 2012 7:37 am 
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Added the bracing up front. Now I am pondering about the tubes running from the front to the rear. Looks like I have enough room to do both sides pretty much the same. Angles may be slightly different due to the intake manifold. However, I am wondering how much stiffness you really gain by adding these since the rearward running tubes have a narrow angle in relationship to the outside frame tube.

Any ideas..options etc., would be appreciated.
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 11, 2012 9:13 pm 
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I had hoped the Miata front sway bar could be reused and after a couple of different arrangements, it looks like I can tuck the sway bar inside the front nose section and due to the curvature of the ends, it clears the shocks pretty good. I've got to come up with an attachment point on the LCA but I think it is going to work out just fine.
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 16, 2012 10:11 pm 
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Started to work on the scuttle. Made a templete for the dash and made a zillion cuts in the 1" square tube so I could form it easily around the templete. Then I tack welded all the cuts and ground the surface flat. Took a lot of time but came out looking really good. My plan is to use the Miata gauge cluster and housing as it sems to fit pretty good. However, the small steering wheel may restrict seeing all the gauges.
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