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PostPosted: January 22, 2014, 10:42 pm 
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Always Moore!
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I hate to call it a restoration since I have no plans on restoring it; the goal is to update it to be a safe vintage race car that can be (probably uncompetitively) ran in HP.

I gave the project a bit of an introduction here: viewtopic.php?f=32&t=14505&start=18

The biggest issues plaguing the car are dirt and a general lack of love for over 30 years. It was store indoors but I'm guessing it was a barn based on some of the nuts and other stuff tucked away in the chassis. Fortunately I've been all over the car and everything is rust free so it seems to be a good starting point. Aside from a few screw holes that need to be plugged no rust repair is required.

Step 1 was getting everything in the garage and on stands so everything could be assessed:
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Step 2 was to get it disassembled. There has been ongoing progress at this since November and aside from removing the rear axle is finally complete. Racers in the 60s and 70s were really brave. The roll hoop is definitely not up to today's standards; when I was in the process or removing the two 1/4" plates that supported the hoop on the passenger side, I broke the weld between the two with my bare hands. I'd hate to imagine the result if it was actually required.
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Here is my proposed plan for the cage:
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I didn't feel like running the tape for the rear hoop supports - 2x2s and masking tape are way easier than trying to make something usable in Solidworks and I finally found something that blue painter's tape is good at!

BMC's solution of one hydraulic system for all four wheels is also pretty comical. To make it even more interesting is the lack of a hand brake; one hydraulic failure and you won't stop until you hit something. Needless to say adding a dual system is at the top of the list (plus it is required by the rules).
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I decided to lose the fender flares instead of trying to find a loophole to make them legal. Some groups have caveats for stuff raced "in the era" and others don't; either way you are limited to 1.5" over stock width for vintage so a 5.5" wide wheel with a street tire is going to look ridiculous with them.

I found that the front inner fender was trimmed a little - not a big deal to fix - but the front and rear fenders both had an excessive amount of sheet metal removed beneath the flares. Craigslist yielded another set of uncut front fenders (jackpot) and Graham came through with a solid chassis to donate its rear fenders (double jackpot). As a bonus the yellow Midget chassis also had good inner front fenders. For a brief time (well the time it took to pick up the chassis and drive home) I was contemplating swapping stuff from the Sprite chassis to the Midget chassis but the changes from 1962 to 1973 would have made stuff like the rear suspension unusable. Plus I have the logbook for the Sprite and not for the Midget.
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After a little more welding, the engine compartment should be ready for paint and the reassembly process can begin on that end of the car. The Midget chassis was painted with Rustoleum using a foam roller and I have to say it is a pretty darn nice finish even for a race car so in all likelihood I will be doing the same. Then the rear fender transplant can begin.

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PostPosted: January 22, 2014, 11:19 pm 
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What are you doing with the fender flares you took off?

Do you think they could be adapted to say a 280Z rear end?

I'm trying to find a way to get a flare that flares out at the bottom to help control gravel from much wider tires than stock.

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PostPosted: January 23, 2014, 12:47 am 
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Andrew,
Very cool, I'm looking forward to seeing how this rebuild progresses. Your main roll hoop looks very much like the one I cut out of a ex-race Bugeye that I once had, kind of wish I still had the car (and the roll hoop as it would have worked well in the spare bodytub I had at the same time).

Rod


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PostPosted: January 23, 2014, 10:10 am 
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Woods great isn't it? Nice pedals and box.

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PostPosted: January 23, 2014, 11:58 pm 
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Always Moore!
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Thanks guys.


carguy123 wrote:
What are you doing with the fender flares you took off?

Do you think they could be adapted to say a 280Z rear end?


I was going to try to sell the front fenders/flares and the rear fenders as a set but I may be able to be convinced otherwise. When would you need them by and what would they be worth to you?

The rears seem pretty generic. I'm sure with a bit of work you could make them fit just about anything. The fronts on the other hand a pretty much the exact shape of the Spridget front fender. It almost makes me wonder if the rears were not just "flares" and the fronts were Spridget flares.


cs3tcr wrote:
Andrew,
Your main roll hoop looks very much like the one I cut out of a ex-race Bugeye that I once had, kind of wish I still had the car (and the roll hoop as it would have worked well in the spare bodytub I had at the same time).


Considering they were the only piece of roll over equipment required for wheel to wheel back in the 60s/70s, it wouldn't surprise me if someone produced a batch of them at some point.


Miatav8,MstrASE,A&P,F wrote:
Woods great isn't it? Nice pedals and box.


Thanks. Wood is normally nice until you resort to faux-wood decals like what was applied to the dashboard! :ack:

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PostPosted: January 24, 2014, 12:13 am 
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I am at the stage I could use them NOW. Can you send me a pic of them off?

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PostPosted: January 25, 2014, 1:16 am 
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Sure - here they are. The fender that was on the left rear is on the left. If you measure at the bottom, the fender sticks out about 3" beyond the normal contour of the body.


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PostPosted: January 25, 2014, 10:48 pm 
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I went into the garage this morning and there was a little bit of snow on the ground. I left the garage tonight and there was a good 5 or 6" outside. :ack:

I've been trying to figure out how to get the tie-rod ends out of the steering arms so I can remove the rack. The steering arms are pretty small and normal sized tools don't seem to fit. Beating it with a hammer also did not seem like the best idea. I tried the gear puller a few weeks ago and it did not have enough to grab on. Then I had an epiphany this morning; why not make a round disc that the gear puller can grab on?

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Once the rack was out I was able to get to work on the crack in the steering rack mount.

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After I took this picture I looked closer and realized that the crack went onto the bottom side. It took some blind welding on my back but I think it is fixed.

The freshly donated front inner fenders got welded in plate and the entire engine compartment got some TLC with the wire brush. If the weather ever gets above freezing I'll be able to paint the engine compartment.

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Finally the Midget donated its rear fenders.

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There isn't much of the Sprite's fenders left thanks to the previous owner cutting them so I'm half tempted to plug weld the new fenders in a few spots over the exist sheet metal (maybe do a little on the seam as well), grind the welds flush, slap on some filler, and call it a day.

What are your professional opinions?

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PostPosted: January 26, 2014, 12:09 am 
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The car is coming along great, good luck with the rest of the build.

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PostPosted: January 26, 2014, 12:23 am 
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Clever puller idea. Good to keep in mind.


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PostPosted: January 26, 2014, 10:03 am 
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See comments on pic for how I would do it. Use .050 steel sheet as filler if required.

A wire cup in a drill works great and stripping the layers of paint, rust and filler. Can't tell how bad it really is until you strip it back to metal. A magnet helps somewhat.


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PostPosted: January 26, 2014, 10:37 pm 
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I took your advice MV8 and knocked out both sides this afternoon:
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I'll have to finish welding another day.

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PostPosted: January 27, 2014, 12:35 am 
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nick47 wrote:
Clever puller idea. Good to keep in mind.


I'm sure there is/was a special tool to do the job but HF sure doesn't carry it. I bought one of every style tie-rod end removal tool they had; when I got them home I didn't even have to open the packages to see that they were not going to work. I bought the smaller of the two style "forks" they sell and the arm could just about fit through the gap.

I guess that is part of the joy of working on stuff that isn't domestic muscle.

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PostPosted: January 27, 2014, 9:15 am 
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The Alpine has a strange steering setup that results in two tie rod ends that are very difficult to access. I used an air hammer. They popped out on about the third blow. Other Alpiners have used the technique with equal success. You can hammer on them all day with no effect.

I do like your solution.

Bill


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PostPosted: January 27, 2014, 9:54 am 
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Glad things worked out for you. Clever tool. I always have success by hammering on the casting perpendicular to the tapered axis with a big piece of steel on the opposite side. 2# sledge behind and hitting the casting with a 16 oz ball peen seems to always work for me.

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