Friday, September 19, 2008


Buggered my thumb yesterday :(

Did the same thing back in 2001. Bent my right thumb about 1-2" back from the furthest natural position, tearing the muscle or ligaments...really nice tearing / squelching noise.

Not nice! It took 2weeks to mellow out and 4months to fix last time!

I was travelling last time and pushing my rucksack onto the overhead storage on a train in Oz, similar thing this time, pushing something overhead.


Anyone used LED bulbs? Needed a new rear lamp bulb, so got two of these 380 style dual circuit LED's. Little bit brighter than the normal bulbs, they are meant to "last forever", they use basically no voltage and they react instantly. Funny you can slap the brake pedal and the normal bulb doesn't even light up by the time these have been on and off again.

Totally pointless "upgrade". They light up RED too.

Got my gearbox tunnel delivered yesterday by the welder, just need to finish it off and do a few final welds. I was informed my 4metre single length of alloy fuel pipe finally arrived at Mocal today, so after 4weeks I might be able to get that done. Leaving just the exhaust, mod the front bearing carriers and finally assemble the remains of the front suspension, weld up the seat belt bar. Could be run and MOT'ed then, would pass an MOT now.

Non essential jobs, finish the enginebay valances on the other side, clean up the valances and tunnel and paint them.

Now have all the hardware cleaned up to get Matt's bonnet on. See a bit more of this car on the blog when it moves on slightly into plumbing and anything more interesting, which pretty imminent. Be nice test the PRRT stat and cooling system on mine before making any final choices.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Austin Healey 3000

Pleasant work today fixing the SU's.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Rolling Rolling

Brakes filled and working, pedal feels about the same before.
Fitted the windscreen. Went well, messy, used some 3M sealer. Reused the old seal. Couldn't have done a nicer job, took ages though.
Car has rolled about a little, did poke it nose out the garage yesterday.
Didn't have a finisher strip so I used a piece of black 4.5mm o/d cable. Worked REALLY well! Far better than the chrome strip!
Obviously finished off the brake pipes etc. Going to switch back to 5/8th rear wheel cylinders, so will have to just swap those and rebleed the back.

Not sure what to make of the rear end seeming really low, considering the roof is off, no fuel and it was as low as it would be loaded up when last used. Thats after rolling is back and forth...

Maybe the spring has settled a little bit in 2 years of sitting. Anyway, I moved the spring up 1inch to the middle position in my 3 hole rear uprights. This raises the back a little and should be back where it was when the tracking was done, or near by. Ideally could use a hole in the middle of the middle and lower...typical.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Brakes 2

Popped out today, got 4metres of copper pipe and fittings, borrowed an expensive flaring tool. Ordered a bias adjuster, the plan for the weekend is route the brake pipe to the back via the cockpit and get it ready for fluids, need to fit some new rear wheel cylinders. Make up my front brake lines after testing a few layouts.

Assembly of the hub/brake system went well, however I cannot hardbolt it down yet as I need to source some special bolts for the disc to hub arrangement. Obviously these are not included in the canley parts or the caterham parts! You need special hex head allen bolts with a 10mm shank. The shank allows perfect location of the disc to the hub and means the shank holds it all nicely together.

I need to order these from caterham as they are a special item.

Obvious not mentioned by anyone selling the stuff.

A joy to buy something, first thing for ages that requires NO adjustment or fixing!

Anyone using the caterham hub kit needs to note the proceedure for assembly is different to normal, you do not allow endfloat in the hub...

Stick it all together, do the castle nut up as hard as two fingers allow, then spin the hub 10times, you'll see the nut rotates a bit and does itself up as the bearings seat, again do it up as hard as you can with the ends of your fingers, 1 finger each side, (thumb and finger 1), this will be about 5-6ft/lbs. Now spin the hub again and you shouldn't find you can add anymore tension.You will find the split pin should go through now.

You do not BACK OFF the nut. It's obvious if you leave the nut loose or back it off one flat all the grease will piss out between the stubaxle and the bearing and the spacer/castle nut. The bearings have seals on, rubber, these MUST NOT rotate with the hub, the centre of the bearing case must stay still. This is import or you'll end up with a load of grease everywhere. Obvious none of this is mentioned at canley's but it's vitally important.

As the special bolts for the disc to hub.

Very happy with all these mods, filled with lovely redline CV2 grease. Bastard to work the grease into these bearings cause the larger end of the tapper is sealed, took about 30mins to ensure they were filled to my satisfaction, the hubs were half filled.

Also need some hardened 7/16th washers for the caliper bolts to upright.

The idea of all this was a proper job on the outboard stuff, so best not that down spec it with crap fasteners and mild steel junk.

The only fluid you want to use is Castrol Response Super DOT4, this stuff is synthetic, very lubey and gentle on seals, also it gives a BONEHARD pedal.

I may just make some new lower wishbones now, rather than later, the crap weather means little use between now and spring, just some blating on nice cold dry days? Now my car is half Caterham half steel Triumph Chassis and Body I can use the word blat instead of drive?

Run out is under 0.001", I checked that.
Pads are retained by some pins, there is an end fitting that you close with some pliers then tap them in, anti rattle plate. Loosely stuck together atm.
Split pin is a "solid" fit needing to be tapped in.
No silly washers needed between caliper and upright etc. Discs are quite small 240mm.

Test brake line, tried a number of fittings before settling on a setup. The brake lines that came with the kit are no use, but the fixings are re-useable and useful!
Made up my brake lines. Same deal as a normal spit but different hardware.
No tension or movement of the ends, just within the double loop.

Happy with that, fooking should be, cause having just foolishly added up the cost of the bushes, rosejoints, wishbones, uprights, brakes and hubs, I could have brought another "reasonable" spitfire :(

Thursday, September 11, 2008


Spotted some cheap Pagid pads :)

I hear of guys doing 20,000miles including up to 40 track days and not even using a set of pagids! They may cost a BOMB, but they last forever.

The friction from cold (RS15) is like 0.50 and goes up to 0.62+ when @ 600C. Stable constant to 800C with bursts to 900C.

Where as a mintex 1144 is about 0.37 and doesn't improve at all, goes DOWN as they warm up!

The difference between 0.37 and 0.52 is HUGE.

The utter shit you are sold by a Triumph supplier is about 0.15 :) and goes down to nothing @ 100C :D :D

So I might grab the pagids and wang those in.

These M1142 are a bit shit I read, ok but no feel. Can't moan though as basically come free and you can buy them for £30 if you hunt about.

You think the Mintex 1144 is good in your Spitfire, go to Merlin Motorsport and grab some RS14 or RS15 Pagids :)

I read they make Mintex feel like the cardboard shite you get sold if you buy pads at a Triumph supplier!

They NEVER fade, they bite FAR harder when cold, make 1155 appear really poor also.

I ate a set of 1144 before in 14 ring laps and 1 trackday, do the maths and the pagid's work out so so so so much cheaper.

Point is, I want a take the braking to a new level, so the caterham guys LOVE pagids, so seems silly not to run them out the box for the best results and happiness right off the mark...

You think hard-pad no cold bite, totally the opposite, you don't pay £120+ a set for nowt! Hotter they get the harder they bite :)

Read up!

Look above if you want to try some in your Spitfire calipers :)


I pondered my choice and here it is.
Caterham clearly got sick of people winge'in about a long pedal, so to my delight, the lastest calipers have 2x 38.1mm pistons, making them perfect !

I believe I made the right choice going with AP. All the parts are AP bar the Mintex pads.

Also there are between 20-30 different types of pad for these calipers, Pagid, Mintex, Hawk, Ferodo + others. Compared to the Wilwood Midilite which has about 5 grades! Bonus.

Big calipers. But no heavier than a wilwood with the bracket. (1800grams). No need for a plate or mount block, so less bolts, flex, pad knockback. The lugs are nearly 1inch thick, so typical AP, stiff !
Pads aren't cheap though. You can pay up to £180 a set! However you can get Mintex for much much less. These are roady pads M1142.
Disc's also AP and top quality, no holes or groove sillyness etc.

Wallet's a bit lighter but worth it.

Got some CV2 Redline Grease, I have all the bits to stick that together.

Basically it for expenses, just the exhaust pipe and fittings.

Monday, September 08, 2008


After careful calculations of piston and master cylinder sizes I came to the conclusion to buy the Caterham AP racing brake kit. Worked out pedal travel should just be a small amount more than I had before on 16P Calipers, the AP Caterham kit uses the biggest pistons of any kit for the Triumph upright.

I decided against the Wilwood cause of the need to run bendy caliper brackets between the caliper and upright, also the midilite calieprs are dust sealed and the seals will probably just melt.

Alcon, well solid discs.

The compbrake kit, probably more expensive than caterham one.

AP Racing calipers are the best, bar Alcon. Also this kit comes with nice quality discs, fasteners and pads. Also ensured of future parts supply.

Should pick it up later week from Milwood MC.