Sunday 28 January 2018

First Run in 2 months

Woke up this morning, looked out of the window and realised this is one of those winter days why I don't SORN the car.   So emergency repairs was the order of the day.    

First I just sprayed blue paint over the cracks to disguise the damage.   You may remember that originally the nose cone was mounted on the two steel supports at the front of the car, but I had replaced that with hinges so I didn't have to remove the grill to take off the nose cone.   

Those supports were so badly distorted after the crash they could not be used for a direct mount, so I went down a different route.   I mounted a wooden batten (Much prefer wood to metal) and then mounted a single bolt on another piece of wood that acts as a locating 'peg' for the bottom the the nose cone.

So drilled a hole in the middle of the bottom of the nose cone and put it on the car.  Perfect fit, rock solid and looks perfect if you don't get too close   And I can remove the nose cone just by unbolting the bolts at the back and lifting it off the locating bolt.

Next I tried to reshape the bonnet.    Just about managed to get it to a state where it will sit on the car and engage the latches, but it isn't pretty.  But at least I can drive her to a body shop and see what they think.    

So with everything buttoned up she was ready to go.

Note the rectangular hole in the bonnet where there used be a louvred vent.   That was totally destroyed in the crash so I drilled the remains out and I have a replacement on order from E-Bay arriving next week.

Originally I was going to do an instrumented run but the battery on my netBook was flat, so I had to rely on 'feel'.   So then, with fingers crossed, I started out, conscious of the fact that she hadn't moved in two months.    Battery was down to 11.8V but she still started (just) .  I had originally intended to do a short test trip but she was going so well, and I was enjoying myself so much that I finished up doing 30 miles.  I kept to country roads but according to the speedo on my iPhone I got up to 70mph at one point.  I played safe by doing it in a clover leaf pattern based around the house to give me an opportunity to bale out if anything was wrong.  I did 7 miles to the A1 and back, 11 miles to Bourne and back then 12 miles around my test route to Grantham and back.

The result was:

1.   The front right indicator isn't working  (easy fix)

2,   One of the 4 bonnet latched came undone but there was no danger of the bonnet flying off.

3.    Once she had warmed up the temperature remained rock solid.

A perfect temperature.   This was a big surprise as all I had done was top up the system when I fitted the new radiator and I expected to have to play around 2-3 times to get rid of air locks and get it working properly.    But not only was it perfect, but when I checked the water level a couple of hours later I had not lost any  So really chuffed with that.

So off to the recommended body shop next week and get quotes for straightening the bonnet and doing a proper job on the nose cone breaks.

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