Diary Of Events
Westfield sadly don't have an XI to view or test drive so Dad and I go to view a high spec one that is for sale at Hilton Moss in Essex. On the way back we stop at Clacket Lane services for a spot of lunch and I call Judy at Westfield and place my order.
In the Showroom, stacked with boys toys!!!!!!
Westfield XI Kit with Le Mans Style Rear in Westfield Racing Green with Crimson Interior with White Piping
Optional Complete Wiring Loom (rather than chopping in to old Midget loom)
Front Anti-Roll bar Kit
Bullet Style Chrome wing Mirrors (to be fitted after IVA)
13" Wooden Rim Steering Wheel and Boss Kit (to be fitted after IVA)
Tonneau Cover (to be fitted after IVA)
18/10/2013 / 19/10/2013
Today is the day that I have been waiting to arrive for a little over 10 weeks, COLLECTION DAY!!!!!!!!! Dad and Ad's picked me up in the truck straight from work at 06:15 and we made our way up to Westfield in Birmingham. We stopped for the standard road trip breaky and finally arrived at about 11:00. I was only slightly excited by this point waiting outside and then up went the roller shutter and there she was. However I have made a school boy error and am no doubt the only person in the world to ever do this which is slightly embarrassing. One of the extra options available when ordering the kit is for "Polished Bodywork" which I read and believed to be to prep the GRP flawlessly for spraying but it turned out that was not it all !!!!! Having had 2 Westy's in the family already, I assumed that the standard finish would be as per the usual Westfield Seven but as standard and apparently how they have always been, the bodywork comes fitted but with all of the mould marks scratches and other heart stopping imperfections. I nearly had a heart attack when I walked in and saw the state of the GRP but after much discussion about how poorly worded the options sheet is and how no one had questioned or thought to mention that it wasn't going to be finished at all we got the Westy loaded. Adrian from Westfield helped with everything and I have to say if it wasn't for his helpfulness and customer service skills I would have probably been a gibbering wreck on the floor either that or I would have slapped my sales assistant!!!!!! I am still struggling to understand why the Eleven is different to the Seven in this respect but I guess the old saying never assume cause it makes an ASS out of U and Me was invented for this moment. With everything finally sorted and getting a gesture of good will from Westfield for the misunderstanding we loaded up the Eleven and headed back down south to unpack all the box's and get it set up on the build stands.
Ready for collection at Westfield
Back home on the build stands
The following morning I spent checking through all the box's and trying to make sense of all the lovely goodies which luckily come with a packing list which helps a total amateur like me work out what's what. The only thing at this point which still worries me a little is the distinct lack of building instructions but with a huge resource of help on the WSCC Forum, the Eleven Register and of course Westfield themselves I hope this wont pose too much of an issue. The manual is a great guide but is very sketchy on detail, as an example there is no reference to the size of bolt length to be used and if it wasn't for the pictures it would be rather entertaining to say the least.
Today I got down to the nitty gritty and started on the build, the starting point is to install the front suspension. I have opted for the Anti-Roll Bar kit so this means that certain bolts are replaced by the ones supplied in the Anti-Roll Bar kit. The first stage is to install the wishbones and this bought to light the first slight modification. There are cut outs in the Alloy panels to allow access to the bolts and mount points these however aren't trimmed quite close enough to the chassis and were causing the wishbone to fowl on it once the springs and shocks were installed. This was a quick fix with a file and some sand paper to finish it neatly. I then spent some time finishing the steering rack as it needs 1/4" cut off the ends where the track rods screw on. This was quite a simple task and once completed and painted the steering rack was looking really good. You are also required to have the track rod ends cut down by 1/4" but I had this done by my local machine shop to ensure a perfect finish.
Near side front suspension
Off side front suspension
01/11/2013 / 05/11/2013
Finally I have spent some time on the project over the last few days and rebuilt up the rear axle installing the new rear brake set-up, sadly it isn't possible to buy new back plates for the drums so I have done the best possible refurb on the originals. The rear axle went in with relative ease but it did require some filing to the chassis mounting points in order to get the trailing arms to fit. Once the axle was fitted and with the panard rod installed I measured the difference to ensure that the axle was perfectly centred and well done Westfield it was a massive 0.2mm's out which is evidence of the clearly skilful welding on the axle. Now for the scary part that I have been dreading which is to torque up the rear hubs, 140ftlbs is the order of the day slightly scary when in the back of my mind all I can think is that the threads on the axle are 45 years old. This however went without a hitch other than managing to knacker my torque wrench. I then turned my attention to the front end and got the optional anti-roll bar fitted, loosely at this stage as it cant be tightened until the ride height is set. This was a quick job so I turned my attention to the steering column. As the manual rightly stated the hole where the column runs through needs filing out as it fouls the column but being aluminium it was a nice easy job.
Rear Axle and Panard Rod Installed
Optional Front Anti Roll Bar
Fitted the Clutch, Brake and Throttle Pedals today which was quite a quick job. I then fitted the Clutch and Brake Master Cylinders, before doing this you need to shorten both the cylinder rods so that when they are in the neutral position the pedals sit upright rather than lean forward. Again this was a very straight forward job and felt very good when I did my test driving position check. Next on the agenda is the brake pipes, first of all I fitted the Brake Union Tee's one of which requires fitting near the master cylinders and requires a spacer so you can fit the Brake Switch. Once this was complete I carefully measured the routes with a piece of string, I worked out which pipe went where, note to self however read the manual as it has these details in there to save you time!!!! At this stage I noticed a small issue where the front chassis mounting point for the Tee has been mounted on the wrong side of the car but a call to Westfield and they are sending another out to me ASAP. Having never bent a brake pipe in my life I was rather daunted by this stage but after lots of careful measuring and some help from dad I was into the flow of it and once completed I was rather pleased with the results, even if some of the lines are perhaps over complicated as I liked to follow the curves precisely. The only other thing to point out is as there aren't any places to drill the P-Clips onto the Rear Axle you use some small lengths of Fuel Pipe which stop everything rubbing and gives a tidy look (See Picture below)
Floor Mounted Pedal Set-up
Rear Axle With Brake Pipes
Today I fitted the fuel tank. In order to fit the tank you are required to trim the edge of the right hand side pod so that the tank fits in place. This had already been done by Westfield but was not cut anywhere near far enough so out with the Jigsaw and after some fettling I got it so that the tank sat about right. I found it was necessary to remove the pop rivet that was holding the front pod on otherwise I would have damaged the fuel tank whilst test fitting. The tank is held in place with a strip of aluminium sheet that is riveted both top and bottom onto the chassis rails then lined with sticky back foam so that it doesn't rub. All in all this was a very fiddly part of the build as I wanted the tank to be just right and you have to take care not to cut too close to the edge of the pod as this is visible from the outside of the car.
Fuel Tank In Place
A Tight Fit
Today I fitted the Handbrake, (I have previously re-conditioned the Handbrake itself and the back plate). A relatively straight forward job, you just have to ensure that the whole unit is level and that it lines up with the plate that Westfield weld behind the aluminium panelling (my plate wasn't quite in the right place but that could just be me being fussy!!!!) once mounted I installed the new handbrake cable and fitted it to the rear bracket. I haven't yet fully adjusted the handbrake adjusters but it is all working smoothly so hope that its all going to work effectively.
Hand Brake Cable
Today I installed the radiator, although the one from the donor was perfectly serviceable I decided to purchase a new one as it will give a much nicer finish. The radiator itself is mounted directly to the electric fan plate and is then mounted to the chassis. I got the radiator and fan unit all set up as it is a very tight fit so before drilling any of the holes I wanted to get the right alignment. The top plate of the unit mounts to the top chassis bar using rivnuts and to the lower chassis using some M6 Bolts which have to be drilled from the bottom which means lots and lots of measuring to get it just right. The top alloy plate was missing its protective cover and had been scratched to death so I re-bent it to the opposite way round so the good side was on show and the damaged part was hidden underneath which bearing in mind is a big piece of the engine bay it needs to look good. Once the radiator was all installed I fitted the plug using a wiring harness clip making sure it doesn't fowl on any of the suspension components.
Today I fitted the fuel sender which after some negotiation arrived from Westfield, I was a lucky boy and they had done the modification to the length of the arm for me which saved a lot of time. The sender is mounted into the tank using some button M5 Bolts and of course has a nice cork gasket to stop the go go juice escaping. I then started to set the dashboard up as I had a hankering for something different. I am using all the original dials from the donor Midget and have spent some time on them getting them looking nice. Taking them apart is pretty fiddly but achievable, I found a very useful PDF that gives details of all the various types of units that are around and how to "repair" them.
Have a look at this link for a complete guide: http://triumph.daveola.com/NOTES/Speedo_Repair.pdf
Once I had got the Speedometer set-up for a "new car" and the other dials cleaned up I installed them into the pre-covered dash. The dash looks pretty tidy already I cant wait to see it in the car.
Dashboard & Dials
I then moved back onto the fuel tank and installed the overflow pipe. I didn't follow the manual on this part as I wanted to drill the hole from underneath the pod so I riveted two wiring harness clips to the upper part of the chassis to hold the pipe in place and used a rubber grommet at the pod end to stop the pipe wearing where it comes through the alloy, the overflow pipe is jubilee clipped on as can be seen in the pictures. To ensure the pipe doesn't make its way back inside the pod I put a small cable tie on it to stop it from slipping through the grommet. Although the alloy protective covering is doing what it is there for I cant wait to peel it off and see those lovely shiny pods!!!!!!!
Overflow Pipe (Tank End)
Overflow Pipe Exit Point
As I've been busy working on the car doing lots of different things its not left much time for website writing plus my laptop appears to be dying slowly but surely!!!! I have decided that I will lump some of this together as I have been jumping in and out of stages as time has allowed.
I have installed the wiring loom which was purchased as an option from Westfield to avoid having to use the Midget Loom, this in my eyes is an essential purchase as will give a much neater finish. The loom is held in place using saddle clips which are riveted to the chassis. Rather than show individual pictures of a boring loom there will be lots of more interesting items which will have some loom around it no doubt for viewing pleasure. I obtained a copy of the Westfield Wiring Loom Diagram which makes things a lot easier click here to view.
I have now installed the Facet Fuel Pump which I purchased online, I chose to buy it with fitting kit which gives you some nice rubber bush style mounts to hopefully alleviate some of the noise that this pump will no doubt make. I then fitted the Fuel Line which is mounted around the tube section in the engine bay using the supplied P-Clips. The clips are fractionally too big so I have wrapped a small amount of Self Amalgamating Tape around the pipe to give it some extra protection and to hold it all tightly in position. The horn has also been fitted to the angled part of the chassis and I have purchased a Accuspark Ignition Kit which includes a Coil which is fitted to the Bulkhead alongside the Brake Switch.
Facet Race Fuel Pump
Engine Bay Fuel Line Run
The Dashboard is now installed in the car to get the wiring loom correctly positioned, the dashboard is held in place with self tapping screws and some lovely old brass washers from my Granddad's hoarding tins, when he was with us anything screw related could always be found in his "Aladdin's Cave" of a garage but sadly that has long since gone, luckily Dad has taken over and the 100 odd cigarette tins and they now sit on a shelf in his garage instead, the new "Aladdin's Cave" !!!!! Part of the wiring loom installation is the fuse box which I decided to mount on the side rather than the top as the manual suggests as I feel gives a nicer finish and is more easily accessible from inside the car. The hole for the fuse box has to be cut which I did by hand with a Junior Hacksaw blade, it took ages but the finished result was rather smart. The box is bolted in with some pieces of alloy tube to act as a spacer to keep it all tight (as can be seen in the picture below)
Fuse Box (Side Located)
The engine will soon need to be installed and I have been throwing caution to the wind and rather than going with the original plan of keeping the engine standard I have spent what seems like a small fortune on some goodies which will make the car much more interesting to talk about in the pub carpark!!!!! Firstly I have had the block bored out so that it is now a 1330cc and for good measure had the crank polished, this was all done at Southern Rebore near Gatwick. To help it breath more easily I have purchased a Metro Cylinder Head from Jonspeed Racing, the head has slightly bigger valves so will be better suited than the standard Midget head. Ad's very kindly polished it for me as he had the tools to do so and it has been colour matched in Red to the Block. I have also upgraded the Camshaft from the standard one to a Piper Cam Kit from MED Engineering, the ST2 kit as it is called comes with a High Torque Camshaft (suited for Fast Road use) new Double Valve Springs, Vernier Pulley (shame you wont be able to see it when its done as its beautiful!!!!) a set of Cam Followers and a new slot drive Oil Pump. The head came from Jonspeed with new Valve Springs but I changed them for the Piper ones as they are perfectly set-up for the cam.
Metro Cylinder Head
New Valve Springs Installed
I had originally planned to use the Twin SU Carbs that came with the Midget, in fact I spent the best part of 4 hours cleaning and polishing them but after a serious amount of nagging from Ad's about "how it would look very period but it is going to hold the engine back" I had a lovely Weber 40 DCOE Carburettor on a Manifold sitting on the work bench. There is every chance that this manifold wont fit as it is swept up but it came free with the carb so fingers crossed, if not they are readily available online and I will sell this one and use the money to buy its replacement. The Weber Carb is a thing of beauty and although it isn't period it will give a lovely induction noise!!!!!!!!!!
Rebored 1330cc Block
Weber 40 DCOE Carburettor
The engine assembly is underway now in Ad's garage, this is the first time I have done anything like this before and I'm glad Ad's is overseeing it all as there are lots of little tricks that save tons of time, plus he has loads of special tools that no doubt would cost almost as much to buy as the engine has cost to rebuild. Youtube has also come in handy with tips on installing and timing up the Cam and a lovely quick and simple way to get the engine to Top Dead Centre.
When we took the engine apart we found that the Engine Backplate which the gearbox mounts too had snapped and had been poorly welded so I had bought a replacement, unfortunately up until now it was still in the box and covered in old gaskets and paint and even though I had given it the once over when it arrived 6 months back I didn't see the two small cracks which meant a waste of another £50 but lesson learnt. To resolve the problem once and for all I ordered from MED Engineering a nice new laser cut Alloy Back Plate which will hopefully arrive tomorrow along with my nice new 1 & 5/16" Socket to tighten up the Camshaft and the Crank Pulley Bolt.
Water Pump Fitted
Cylinder Head Installed
Today Ad's and I decided to sort the engine timing out. I spoke with Lee at MED Engineering and he gave me a simple beginners guide on how to get it all set up. I can strongly recommend MED they are always very helpful don't laugh at you when you ask a silly question as I am sure I have done on numerous occasions. Lee told us that the Camshaft had to be set so that Inlet Valve was fully open (Full Lift) at 109 degrees after TDC so we knew what we had to set it to.
Camshaft Set-up Procedure
First step is to set the engine to Top Dead Centre on Cylinder One and as the head had been installed we used a solid rod installed into a disassembled spark plug inserted into Cylinder One's Spark Hole.
We then needed to find out when we had Full Lift on Inlet Valve Number One and this is done using a DTI we set it up on the first pushrod and turned the engine clockwise until we had found the Full Lift position then set the dial to Zero.
Next step is to back the engine off a little and then turn it clockwise again until you are one thou before full lift then take the reading from the timing disc and note it down.
Now you need to continue turning the engine clockwise until you are one thou past Full Lift and take the reading from the timing disc and note it down.
Now take the two numbers and add them together and then divide by two example: the two readings are 100 degrees and 122 degrees add together and divide by two equals 111 degrees.
At this point we then knew that the Camshaft was currently set to 111 degrees After TDC and we needed to adjust it so that it is correctly set to 109 Degrees After TDC, to do this you release the bolts on the Vernier Pulley and then turn the Camshaft 2 degrees and then retighten the bolts. This now means the Cam is correctly timed but just to be sure we repeated the above DTI test on the pushrod and took down the readings off the dial and hooray it equalled 109 degrees After TDC.
Now that the engine is timed we were able to continue with the engine assembly fitting and torqueing up the Crank Pulley, installing the Cam Cover, fitting the Rocker Cover, Blanking Plate for the Heater Matrix and fitting the Accuspark Distributor. There is still a fair bit of work to complete the engine for install but this was a part that I was dreading that is now done so happy days. Over the next few days I got the engine assembled and fitted the lovely new Alloy Backplate which was worth every penny and looks great. Then the day finally arrived and with the help of Dad and Ad's we carefully lowered the engine into its final resting place and it fitted, just!!!! A few things at this point needed tinkering with as the distributor was going to foul on a brake pipe but other than that it went in really nicely and looks the business.
Fully Re-built 1330 A-Series Ready For Installation
It Fits (Just)!!!!!!
03/03/2014 - 01/04/2014
Next up I fitted the stainless exhaust system which looks to be a fiddly job but was very straight forward. Westfield pre cut a hole in the nearside engine bay for the manifold to exit which makes things a lot easier, I have finished all the cuts in the alloy as they are very sharp and have just used some fine wet and dry which gives a great finish. Before fitting the manifold I wanted to get it looking the part so used some alloy polish which took a lot of the flat finish off from the welding. Once the manifold is bolted in place its a simple case of sliding on the stainless back box and mounting it to the tab that is fitted to the chassis. I have decided not to use any exhaust sealant as if fitted with care and using the proper clamp they supply its really not neccesary.
Exhaust Manifold with Weber Carb and Oselli Inlet Manifold
The Stainless Side Pipe
I have taken this opportunity to test fit the Weber carb and unfortunately the manifold I bought it with makes the carb foul on the bonnet so after some searching on eBay I had a reconditioned Oselli one winging its way to me.
I spent the next few days tidying up the engine bay and sorting out the final wiring loom position and have had to do some work on the scuttle to allow for the oil and water capillary tubes. The header tank as can be seen above also fits to the scuttle with a supplied bracket which I have modified to allow a relatively quick release if the scuttle needs to come off in the future. I have now installed the radiator pipes and got everything plumbed in and ready for the first start up.
Next step was to get some coolant in the engine for the big start up, a relatively simple task right up until water started pouring out of the front of the engine between the cylinder head and block!!!! To cut a very long and heart attack inducing story short it turns out my reconditioned cylinder head wasn't skimmed properly which meant it wasn't sealing the water channels and in turn made for a very fetching water feature in the engine bay. A phone call and a trip to Southern Rebore and we were back in the game, fabulous service as usual from SB who had it turned around the same day for me. I spoke with Jonspeed Racing who couldn't give me a reason why it could have been so out but instead very kindly agreed to pay for the re-skimming.
So the big day finally arrived and it was time for the start up, the only thing I didn't replace on the engine was the starter motor which instantly I regretted as for some reason it had died a death but I had a new one the next day so we were ready to go. It took some work and a new battery but eventually she fired up and we were in business, the Eleven is alive and well!!!!!
I did some finishing touches around the engine bay, I have bought a nice inline fuel filter which I was able to mount nicely on top of the inlet manifold to stop it shaking around. I have also bought a sheet of aluminium which I plan to make a custom heat shield as the original MG one was knackered and designed for the original twin SU's. I then finished off some wiring loom work, I have fitted a loom tube down the transmission tunnel as I feel it is better for it to be protected rather than just exposed to the outside world. I have now hard installed the Starter Solenoid onto the chassis member by the scuttle. Next I moved on to the front splash guards. I have planned a little in advance for this and knew that the off side one was going to need a couple of holes cut in it where the bolts holding the fuel pump would have to protrude. The near side one was a simple job just needing a small amount of trimming and sanding to get a reasonable fit, which my new Dremel tool made light work of but the off side one had been cut far to big by the factory and needed a whole inch taking off the top section so it would fit under the bonnet!!!!!!!!! The design and fit of the splash guards is less than ideal so this will be a job for the future maybe some alloy ones will replace the GRP I feel. The guards look pretty ugly when they are sitting on the work bench but once they are fitted they look great and really finish off the front end giving it a sort of chunky complete feel.
Front Splash Guards
Today was an exciting point in the build but also a nerve racking one as I fitted the rear lights, as can be seen in the pictures you have to cut the holes into the rear clamshell in order for them to fit. once measured up several times I marked all four holes up so they were in a perfect line so as not to have a roller coaster line of lights along the back of the car. I drilled the holes and then used my Dremel to grind out the remaining GRP so that the light units would fit. It was a mucky itchy job but I am so pleased with the end results, very in keeping with the original. I also received my propshaft back this week after having it shortened and re-balanced, whilst it was away they fitted new universal joints to both ends as they were worn out.
Holes Cut Ready For Light Units
The Finished Article
I have had a busy couple of months as have moved house so not had a chance to play with the Eleven but I am pleased to say I got back in the chair today and have completed a few bits. Firstly I ordered a Sytec Throttle Linkage and it arrived earlier this month so I set about installing it, as you can imagine it didn't fit but after some tinkering it was all mounted up and looking the business. Most importantly as it mounts on top of the Weber carb it was a concern that it may hit the bonnet but there was plenty of breathing space. The Sytec unit has the facility for single or double cables, I have opted for a single set-up and have installed it in the most discreet but smooth run possible and fitted it to the throttle pedal. In the manual the pictures show it mounted to the top hole on the pedal but after some tests I have decided that It will work better on the bottom hole (nearest the floor pan) as there is a large amount of travel and this will remove some of this. Once this was all sorted and working smoothly I installed the pedal box cover. I have run a bead of silicone and allowed it to dry to give a waterproof seal and have mounted this with rivnuts so that it can be removed if necessary. I also bent a lip in to avoid having to fuss around with the scuttle and actually think it works quite well.
Sytec Throttle Linkage
Pedal Box Cover
Today I cut the holes for the harness slots into the fibreglass carpeted rear, this was complicated massively by the fact that the rear has been carpeted, you have to be so careful not to damage the carpet so its a hand tool only event. I am only having one slot per pair of belts as the outer most strap will sandwich between the back and the clamshell. This is less than ideal but for the time being will get a straight pull at the correct angle for the IVA. I wont be fitting the harness's just yet as there is plenty of work to be done on the interior before they go in. Once I had chopped and shaped the back I moved onto the fuel filler. This was a lot easier than I expected and having done some serious filing and Dremeling it was all fitted to the scuttle. Next job was to re-fit the scuttle and fit the hose between the filler and the tank with the jubilee clips. Dad gave me a hand getting this just right as its a little tight and nearly impossible to do by yourself. The filler looks beautiful (well as beautiful as a petrol filler can be) and works a treat allowing fuel to go straight into the tank unlike my old Seven which was a 10 minute marathon to fill it up.
Flush Fit Fuel Filler Cap
Ad's came round today and we spent some time setting the suspension up. I have followed the set-up instructions for ride height as per the manual which seem fine but will no doubt tweak once I have had some time driving the car. Once we started to get the everything heading in the right direction we soon realised that the steering rack and the track rod ends were going to need more cutting off, I can only assume that this is down to my steering rack being a "Fat Rack" but having removed the amount as per the manual it was clear that we weren't going to have enough adjustment. Back to the machine shop and another 5mm removed and we were back on track. The guys did this free of charge and whilst I waited which was amazing service. Ad's and I then took 5mm off the steering rack arms and it all looked a lot healthier. Finally all set up and with a nice sunny sky above it almost seemed rude not to go for a quick spin round the road (private of course!!!!) It was very lumpy as the carb needs setting up properly but I had a smile so big on my face it was embarrassing.
I have been working on the interior this week, trimming bits that didn't quite fit and generally getting it all as I wanted, I have drilled the seats and have decided to hard mount them as its only Dad, Adam and me who will drive the car and we tend to have the seats in the same position. The carpet set I bought is lovely but requires the handbrake and gear lever cutting out and gaiters installing. For the handbrake I have cut a slot and then trimmed it myself with some leather, I having used a needle and thread since primary school so this was a little painful but the outcome was better than I expected as can be seen in the pictures below. For the gear lever you receive a gaiter but no surround so I have purchased a chrome one from an MGB and fitted it using the gaiter supplied and it looks the business even if I do say so myself.
Hand Brake Slot
Gear Lever with MGB Chrome Surround
21/08/2014 & 13/11/2014
Finally got some time to work on the Eleven today and decided to fit the Billet Oil Catch tank as I plan on getting the car set-up on the rolling road fairly soon. The catch tank was purchased through eBay and what a bargain it was. It came with various different fittings depending on what pipe you are going to use, I plan to use silicone hose. Trying to find a suitable spot where not only will it look good but also be in a functional place is the hardest decision of the install and in the end I opted for the inner pod just behind the nearside splash guard. The tank holds 1 litre and has an inspection tube so will be nice and easy to see when it needs emptying. I also fitted the battery today opting for a Mini Cooper S spec one but will change this when funds permit for a nice small Gel Race battery.
Jumping ahead in time somewhat I have added a picture below of the rear splash guards. The guards come pre shaped but mine did require some extensive modification so that they fitted properly. I have rivited the guards to the chassis and will trim the edges with D rubber for purposes of the IVA but plan to change these out one day for some alloy ones as these are really a poor fit and I would rather a nicer finish.
Billet Alluminium Oil Catch Tank
Battery Location/View Of Rear Splash Guard
Today was the day I have been very excited but also completely terrified about, a trip to CCK Historic Rolling Road to get the base set-up done for the engine. Ad's and I have spent a fair bit of time getting the engine timed up and running as best as possible but the Weber Carb is a mystery to us so we have left it as it came and hope the boys at CCK can work they're magic. We were lucky with the weather and after finishing a night shift I loaded the trailer up and we were on our way to Uckfield East Sussex. When we arrived after a slight altercation and a few strong words we unloaded and rolled the car into the workshop and Graham from CCK got to work. There was an issue with the carb which Graham suspected was down to where the it had been re-conditioned, the internal fuel pump wasn't working correctly and was only supplying fuel to one side on initial start-up but once it had been taken apart and cleaned out it was working beautifully. After a change of jets and a little tinkering Graham had it running really smoothly. It was great to hear it running properly under load, I cant wait to take it out for a quick spin to see how it goes. Graham did a quick power check but only running it up to 3800 rpm it made a rather staggering 38bhp at the wheels so we were pretty happy that once its run in and we bring it back for its final set-up it will all be good and hopefully be around the 80bhp figure.
Preparing for the 1st run
Graham from CCK Historic
I have been over to see Ian who put his Eleven through IVA last year so got to see what he did and chat about the problems he had. The main issue seems to be the seats but he has given me the headrest that he installed on the passenger side to get it through. At the moment I'm undecided whether to use it or not as I will need to drill holes in the rear clam and I really don't want to unless its absolutely necessary.
When I got home I was feeling extremely motivated so got to work on finishing the interior which I have now completed and fitted the passenger seat and harness. The car really looks gorgeous and although its a very common colour combination the Westfield Racing Green and Crimson interior looks the business.
Bucket Seats Installed
Full Crimson Carpet Set
With Christmas now out of the way its high time I pulled my finger out and did some work on the car, I originally planned to have it finished last summer but its clearly not happened so new goal is this summer.
Today I tackled the dreaded headlamp pods which are used purely for the purpose of getting the headlights to the required height to pass the IVA. As you have to drill holes into the bonnet to mount the pods I thought the best thing to do would be to fit the clear perspex covers that will eventually be fitted once the car is complete and then use these holes to mount the pods to the car. First of all I had to trim the perspex covers so that they fitted correctly as they were a little bit to big to fit into the recess on the bonnet. I used my dremel tool and finished with some very fine wet and dry paper to get a nice smooth finish. Once the covers were fitted I wrapped them back up ready for re-fitting once the car has passed IVA. I then masked everything up to protect it all and marked the pods from the underside so I can drill the holes through. After some tinkering they were in place so all that was left to do was fit the headlight units and the indicators. I have now decided that I will be spraying the car once its all complete as the only way to mount the pods due to there poor fit is to put a screw through the back part and mount it to the bonnet. This wasn't the original plan but will make the fitting much more secure and will look permanent in the eyes of the IVA inspector.
Trial Fit of Headlight Pod
The Finished Article Ready For IVA
Today I fitted the wiring looms for the front and rear headlight sections, neither the bonnet nor rear clam come with any cable clips fibreglassed in so I have fitted my own to keep the wiring all nice and tidy. Getting everything in just the right position is key as the cables are the right length so there is no room for slack!!!! Once the front was done I did a quick light check and thankfully it worked exactly as it should yippee!!!!
Well another month goes by and I've been flat out doing everything but working on the Eleven, so today I built up the rear number plate which I have decided to use to mount the rear fog light and the reverse light as I am planning on using the holes that the metal work that attaches the clam itself to the body mount hooks. I am using some steel brackets which I have drilled and then bent to sit the number plate with lights at the correct height angle. The IVA require the lights to be 250mm off the ground and in this position they are bang on. Once the brackets and the number plate were fitted I drilled a small hole to run the cabling through and wired it all in to the rest of the clam loom and did a light check and hey presto she all works except I managed to plug the for and reverse lights round the wrong way!!!!
Rear Number Plate Bracket
Complete Rear Number Plate In Place
Today I fitted the interior mirror which is simply a case of sticking it in the right position to the scuttle. The other mirrors are a little more complicated and I have decided that rather than use the supplied brackets which would require lots of drilling I would make my own that will use the existing holes in the scuttle where the aeroscreen will eventually mount. The mirrors are from the Westfield Seven bike engine car and after some tinkering are mounted in place and although look a little odd point the mirrors in the right direction. These mirrors will be replaced once the car is through the IVA with the beautiful chrome bullet mirrors which are an option when purchasing. I have also started IVA trimming the car, basically everything that has an edge needs coating with rubber so that it cant remove someone's limb if they decide to jump in front of the car. Although it is a bit overkill it kind of makes the car look complete and means that I am ever closer to getting the test all booked up.
IVA Test Ready
So the car is now ready for the IVA test its taken a while for me to get it arranged but finally I have got it booked into Gillingham Test Centre for the 8th of September. Over the last few months I've been pretty slack and just left the Westy in the garage but I kicked myself in the backside and got it sorted. The booking process was quite straight forward although I had an issue with sending the build pictures to them as I did this on a CD. The DVSA technical department decided they couldn't read .jpeg files but in the end I emailed 4 pictures and that seemed to do the trick. So the test is booked and I've done everything I can to hopefully get it through first time (I'll be lucky)
IVA Ready IVA Ready
IVA Ready IVA Ready
IVA Headrests IVA Headrest
The big day has finally arrived and Dad, Ad's and myself have made the trip over to Gillingham to get the car tested. Last night I received a call from my tester to run through a few things in order to help me get through the test. Fantastic service I seem to have hit the Jackpot with the tester I was thinking to myself and then he drops the bomb shell "oh by the way I wont accept your donor cars V5 as proof of the engines age you'll need a letter from Westfield stating its age so it wont be passing tomorrow if you cant provide this" Well pissed off of West Sussex is an understatement as at no point had any of this been mentioned and it contradicts the information that the DVSA have on their website. Dad set to work trawling the internet and came up trumps with a ton of code information from various sources that would get me past the problem without a bloody letter from Westfield who wouldn't know the age anyway. So we arrive at the test station and meet the tester who I get over the first hurdle of engine age with quickly and he retreats inside his shell once he sees all the information. It felt like this was his first little test of my knowledge as even he said he knew the age of the engine but it was down to the owner to prove it. The tester was extremely thorough and asked so many questions it was crazy, he kept finding little things that he seemed unhappy with and would mull it over for ages and then would say "ok I'll let that go" only to come back to it later and change his mind, it was farcical and started to make me see red. He told me at this point that my mirrors were far too low and that there was no way that would pass and laughed when I said I had tested them at home and felt they would be fine. He was really impressed with the engine bay which was nice as I'd spent a lot of time getting it just right and it felt like it was worth all the effort that went into making it neat and tidy. An hour in and there were a few things that I'd failed on and I wasn't going to be able to fix them in the time given so I resigned myself to the fact that I'd be coming back. We went through the various areas of the test centre and finished with the brake test which it flew through thankfully as this was a part that its difficult to know wether you've got it right or not. Mr Tester kept going on and making comments about my mirrors and was giving lots of advice on how I could modify them so they would pass, eventually we got outside and he said "right I'm going to go over to the cones and fail your mirrors then we can test the self-centring" I looked at Ad's and clearly I had the look of, I'm going to chin this twat in a minute, as he just smiled and shrugged his shoulders. I followed Mr Tester to the cones and as I arrived he sheepishly looked at me and said they're "absolutely fine I can't believe it but they are" if ever there was an "I told you so" moment then this was it. Next step was the self-centring test which was probably my main concern and thankfully after some sweet talking we got it through. Mr Tester wanted to do another brake test as he felt that the pedal was spongy even though it had passed but instead of putting on the machine he decided to rag it round the test centre skidding it left right and centre. If you've driven an Eleven you will know how close the pedals are to each over and Mr Tester was about 6'6" tall with size 13 steel toe capped boots on so there was loads of revving and double pedal pressing as you can imagine. By this point knowing I wasn't going to pass I was a little firmer in discussion and pointed out the lack of servo assistance and that it was a 50 year old brake set-up and in the end he relented and passed them.
So mixed emotions from the day but not a long list of failures so a weekend of graft and I'd be in a position to reschedule my next test. It failed on the following items:
Noise tested at 100db pass limit is 99
Handbrake lever didn't have enough reserve travel
Front Grill (Mr Tester cheated here and wiggled the 100mm sphere through the gap as it measures at 95mm)
Seat Belts (wasn't happy with the outer ones running between the carpet back and the rear clam)
Number plate/rear light board wasn't solid enough
Fog Light Tell Tale wasn't permanent (I used a Dymo Printer which is what Westfield told me to do)
All the rear lights were 5mm too low, this was my fault as I set the suspension up to accommodate but it had settled and was now too low
Passenger headrest was deemed as not being strong enough as the rear body flexed when he pushed on the headrest
At Gillingham IVA Test Station At Gillingham IVA Test Station
Spent the next few days resolving all of the issues that I had at the IVA test, luckily there was nothing too serious and all fairly easily rectified. To strengthen the rear clam and make it a more solid base for the headrest I fibreglassed in a little strut which has made it rock solid and will be staying as it really is an improvement. The front grill was a slightly annoying fail, the tester has a 100mm half sphere which if it fits through any gap in the body work basically anything it contacts needs to be radiused so as not to hurt the person you've just run over. My grill measures at 95mm and both dad and I noticed that he had wriggled it through, I should have taken him to task on this but I was beyond the point of caring at this point. I've fitted a bar in the front grill which actually looks really smart and may well end up being an improvement. Next step was to raise the suspension to resolve the rear light height issue and adjust the handbrake so there was some reserve travel. There was plenty before the IVA but the tester yanked the handbrake on so hard when he did the brake test that he actually stretched the cable. I then added some additional supports to the rear number plate/light board so that it isn't springy. I've had some spacers made up for the seatbelts as the ones supplied weren't the right size so it didn't allow the seatbelts to rotate. I have also cut a slot and re-carpeted the outer seat belt slots so that the belts are no longer trapped between the clam and the back. I labelled all of the switches as advised by Westfield but the tester told me the only thing that needed a label was the Fog Light Tell-Tale. He wasn't happy that I had used a stick on label and said it was gash, I agree but its my choice to use stickers surely and if it looks cheap that's my prerogative. Anyway I digress I found a lovely little Land Rover Fog Light plaque on eBay which did the job beautifully. Next step was to sort out the sound issue, I downloaded a DB Tester on to my iPhone and got a reading of 101db so used this as my bench mark, I know its probably not a quality test but its the best I could come up with. I took the little cone out of the exhaust back box and it was at this moment I realised I may have put it in the wrong way round doh!!!! Anyway to make doubly sure I stuffed it with a couple of stainless steel scouring pads and put it all back together, reset my Noise Test iPhone station and hey presto 95db and noticeably it was a lot quieter. Role on the 30th of September for the retest!!!!!!!!!!!!
Rear Clam Strengthening Bar
So today was re-test day, I couldn't decide whether I wanted the same tester or another but as we pulled in to the car park there stood six and a half feet of DVSA's finest so the choice was made and my fingers were crossed. We unloaded the car drove it into the lane and round two commenced, he went through the list in a speedy fashion and half an hour later I was the proud owner of a shiny IAC (Individual Approval Certificate) Much better day in Gillingham and chuffed to bits that I have now got everything needed to get the Westy registered. On the way home we dropped off the trailer and as I had the car road risk insured I drove the last 10 miles home which was a great feeling. All was going fabulously until it all of a sudden the revs started running up and wouldn't drop back down, I limped it home and whipped the bonnet off to find the problem was my Oselli manifold had cracked. As I bought this 2nd hand I don't know if it was an old war wound or whether it was a new issue but either way at least I had an answer to the problem. I am now in two minds as I need to replace the manifold whether I should go all in and swap from my 40 DCOE over to a 45 DCOE. After speaking to the chaps at Classic and Race they have suggested as I will only be using the car on the road to stick with my current set-up and get myself another alloy manifold rather than a steel one as this is better suited for what I'll be using it for.
So over the last couple of weeks I've been turning Frankenstein into a beautiful Eleven fitting all the goodies that I haven't had a chance to look at in a while. The aeroscreen and doors are now fitted, I have riv-nutted the doors so that they can be removed in the new year when I get it painted, Westfield supply the doors riveted on, I wasn't overly happy with that so it kills two birds with one stone. I opted for the Moto-Lita steering wheel and boss but when I fitted it my fingers wouldn't fit between the scuttle and the wheel, I rang Westfield as my first thought was that they had supplied me with a flat wheel and it should have been dished or maybe it was the incorrect boss. As usual they had never had this happen before and that the issue was with my steering rack having a shorter pinion as its a Fat Rack, I have researched this a little and it appears there is no difference so the only variable part is the end of the original column from the MG Midget which you give to Westfield before collecting the kit so they can shorten it and modify it to fit the Westfield centre steering column. My guess is they cut it too short and as per usual they deny it being their issue so rather than having to get it lengthened, I have bought a Moto-Lita 25mm spacer which resolves the problem, it cost me £45 but I decided I'd rather that than have to send the steering column end back to Westfield for them to modify it and probably lose it (did I say that out loud!!!!)
Aeroscreen & Bullet Mirrors Aeroscreen & Bullet Mirrors