Sunday, 23 July 2017

Wiring connector reference

Reference information only - no changes.

I was searching for this and hadn't documented it on the blog. Meant the usual simple search for info turned into some hunting through papers, documents and a little wire tracing.

Most connectors are standard GBS Plug and play loom.

Here pictured are the non-standard/modified connectors to the Aux Panel,

DRLs & Heater fan,

Powered aerial in the boot space.

Colour indicates cable colours.

Saturday, 15 July 2017

Steering wheel bolt change

Can't really call this maintenance, there was nothing wrong with the old steering wheel bolts other than looking shabby.

Replaced them with some new M5 button head stainless ones.

Great improvement over before - the original black bolts had gathered a tinge of orange rust from being in the elements.

Monday, 10 July 2017

IACV Filter renewal

The IACV went in with a pristine grille and foam filter, today it looks rather the worse for wear!
First time I've really looked at it after fitting - and first time I noticed air was also being sucked through the gasket paper at the bottom.

Mixed blessing - i.e. not quite working as originally designed but on the plus side a little more intake volume will reduce the restriction caused by the plate. The IACV inlets are 16mm diameter =201mm², the space on the adaptor plate 16mmx10mm =160mm².

Gasket paper adjusted to permit max inbound air flow.

Back in place, now with some genuine air filter foam which is a little jury rigged. Ticking the box on the KISS front, but its not really that neat - one to think on before finalising.

Engine test - idle not affected rock steady at 1000 revs. If the change has affected the mixture slightly the ECU/Lambda setup can automatically adjust the fuelling for any slight increase in air flow. At some point I'll check the lambda adjustment is still actively fuelling and not hitting its preset stops.

Friday, 7 July 2017

Rear view mirror

The original rear view mirror, mounted on the scuttle, was useless - got me through IVA, but just gave me a view of the spare wheel.

Trying something different - £2 gets me 2x glass blind spot mirrors shipped from China. High quality glass sitting on a plastic swivel mount. Small and slightly asymetric shape - yes - but in a test run provides a perfect view through the roll bar behind the car without taking up windscreen real estate.

The only adjustment needed an extra layer of mounting foam to give me the right viewing angle and the back of the mirror sprayed black to look discrete from the front of the car.

Only point of care - is everything looks further away than it really is due to the fisheye/wide angle nature of the glass.

Update - small adjustment required on the sun visors so they miss the mirror when folded down. Flipped them so the hinges are now on the bottom which gives just enough clearance.

Wednesday, 5 July 2017


September - work conference and an excuse/reason to drive across Europe - this time past/through some impressive mountain ranges.

Early days, but some time to plan. Plenty of potential waypoints to take in there and back.

At the moment I'm thinking a basic run there skirting around the Black forest then on to Lichtenstein Castle, Grossglockner high alpine road and Hohenwerfen Castle before Vienna itself.

The way back - more options, perhaps further west for some more mountains before hitting France.

I need a few long runs in the UK to make sure the clutch cable changes are bedded in too.

Sunday, 2 July 2017

Clutch cable clamp

After a fatigue failure on the clutch cable pedal box end I adjusted its mounitng and replaced it. The cable pushed the end stop towards the pedal box and then continued to push the bowden cable outer through the crimped flange part.

My thought was reenforcement - rather than the bowden inner trying to push the end off the flange, instead take some of the load through the grove in the end part, ahead of the cable end, and transfer it behind the flange.

Mk1 simplest option I could come up with are plates to engage in the end groove and behind the flange connected with bolts.

U shaped plates doubled up since I cannot access the clutch end of the cable to slip a plate over - it has captive nuts. A narrower U plate on the pedal box end which matches the grove exactly.

Help from the Facebook GBS Zero page, Henry Simpkin helped convert my Sketchup mockup into DXF files using DraftSight which a friend of his then laser cut in 2mm & 3mm stainless at a very reasonable price (which I assume was at or near cost).

The parts only needed minor cleaning up to ream the holes a little, and some M4 bolts cut down to an appropriate length.

Installed with M4 bolts and nylocs.
If the bowden cable tries to push its way through the flange towards the pedal box some of that force is transferred through the bolts to behind the flange.

Thank you to both Henry & Martin who helped on the project along with David who also offered help in manufacturing.

Potential Development

  • This could also be solved with an alternate chassis mount, I wanted a remedial fix which did not require changes to the car.
  • The 2mm thick plates were fine in terms of strength.
  • I installed a mixture of 2mm and 3mm parts since for some reason I ended up with too many narrow U plates - not sure if I ordered the wrong thing.
  • May be possible to use a circlip instead if the narrow U plate that engaged with the groove.
  • I was conservative with a 35mm clearance between the bolts and chassis bracket - that could be tuned and reduced in size.

Sunday, 25 June 2017

Wind deflectors mk3

The new sun visors are 3mm acrylic, my old wind deflectors 5mm PETG - they're also looking a little tired - what PETG provides in ease of shaping it loses in being soft and prone to marking. Excuse to rationalise things and a slight re-design. 

Sticking with a basic rectangular shape 150mm wide. The acrylic ordered from Trent Plastics on eBay. A 610mm x 457mm x 3mm piece delivered pre-cut into 4 pieces 150mm x 457mm, ordered Thursday - arrived Saturday! I only need to mount hinges, the diagonal cut and a little shaping to finish them.

Smaller this time, and closer into the side of the car more like 30º rather than 45-50º angle. The bottom corner against the bodywork to hold them in the right place. Careful application of heat with an electric heat gun to form the shape.

May revise them so the top edge is horizontal rather than square to the screen angle, or the back edge more vertical? I have a couple of spare acrylic panels - for possible revisions.

Tried my hand at polishing the cut edges - Youtube said a lick with a blowtorch - it works, just need to hold your nerve. Enough flame to smooth the cut edge but not enough to melt it!

That'll do for a while - again, needs a rainy day to work out if I hit the sweet spot between looks and stopping the front tyres flinging road detritus into my face.

Friday, 23 June 2017

Clutch cable replacement

Lovely run out last weekend, 88 miles, and then within around 50m of home - mid gear change, in neutral and the clutch pedal drops to the floor.

15 minutes later, with the help of a neighbour the car is pushed back to the garage to check for damage.

Just before Ireland reverse and first started getting sticky, just after I had adjusted the tension on the cable, and a good 500 miles on the clock since. It wasn't the cable that snapped - more the mounting flange/end arrangement. Clutch itself feels fine/smooth and free - so I'm putting this down to long term fatigue and misalignment on the top bracket.

The outer cable has effectively pushed through the top-hat end cap and gone on to slide through what is left of it.

I couldn't get a large spanner in to tweak the bracket behind the plenum. This scrap bar with a bolt and washers was perfect though. Let me adjust fore aft and swivelled through 90º left right alignment.

The new cable in place aligned as much as I can.

While the car was on the stands I changed the engine oil and filter - moving now from annual changes to 10k mile changes, the oil coming out is black but very serviceable so this should be fine.

I'm hoping it was more age/fatigue than anything specifically after Ireland, need a few long test drives to check it out and monitor, I also need to order another spare cable!

Potential for another European trip later in the year so want to get this stable and be able to trust it again. Perhaps something a little different - something to sit over the top and engage with the end of the cable rather than all the force through that flange?....

Sunday, 18 June 2017

Sun Visor fitted

Theres always one stubborn bolt! This one decided it wasn't budging until I cut a new slot in the head and used a large screwdriver. You wouldn't have thought an M4 bolt into a couple of mm of aluminium could take so much force.

I have 5x of them each side holding my windscreen in, so apart from the inconvenience of having to order some more, I guess the screen is going nowhere!

Installed visors via 4x new tapped holes and thread-locked shortened M4 bolts.
This is also an opportunity to replace the bottom windscreen rubber with a longer section (not as long as pictured), and re-paint the wing mirrors and screen uprights - they get beaten up with stone chips.

That looks ok to me. Half hood will need adjustment - but I'll wait until I know these are staying before doing that. The angle currently set by friction of the through bolts acting on the crush tubes - if they move or work loose I'll replace the closed dome nuts with nylocs.

The centre rear view mirror is also out - I never could see anything but the spare tyre through it anyway.

Just needs a test!
They're not intended to block wind - just stop the direct line of rain over the screen straight into my eyes.

Update - adjusted when I added a rear view mirror so they miss it

Sunday, 11 June 2017

Sun visor preparation

First part of a little project to add some sun visor / rain deflectors to the top of the windscreen. Partly for sun - but also an experiment to see if I can use them to divert heavy rain out of my eyes!

This is preparation only - I needed a few brackets made up for the windscreen attachment. The visors themselves off the shelf from ebay at a price less than I could construct from component parts - seller C-T-S Spares.

Cut down some aluminium U channel into brackets and pipe for crush tubes. The lot being tidied up with a vigorous shake in a jam jar along with some scrap chain from another project.

I've seen this vibration method on various youtube/tv shows at an industrial scale. It worked really well, knocking off any corners or rough edges and producing a smooth matt finish, much easier and quicker than trying to file or sand small complex shapes.

Mocked up in the final location on the windscreen frame. In due course, and assuming the visors work, the half hood will need a modification to slip over them.

Next step is dismantling the windscreen to tap some mounting holes. The existing frame holes are of course in the wrong place - left over from an early roof design that never really worked.