Engine building.

August 30th, 2015

Well, not quite yet but I am preparing. I sorted out all the bits and pieces and made a list of what I need doing  so I can start. I am hoping I can go see the engineer this week some time.

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I also bought some tungsten burrs so I can tackle the rest of my block.

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Other than that not much has happened. I spoke to Joss and we’ll be making bonnets/boot lids next weekend. I am still busy doing so many other things. Splitting and stacking wood, working on the Turing Bombe, trying to catch up on reading (I think I now have 5 Automobile magazines I haven’t looked at as well as a couple of Beardy Wheels (it’s actually ‘Beaded Wheels’ but I’ve always called it Beardy Wheels because before I even got into vintage cars I always got the impression the people who are into them all have beards) and a VAR club magazine to read. As well as this I have a new (old) book of Edwin Smith photos to look at, a book about the Apollo moon missions and another one specifically about the Apollo guidance computer which is fabulously technical! As someone who has made his own computer that stuff fascinates me. I promise I won’t start building one though. It’s been done already!

Despite all this Joss thought I needed more and gave me three Hornby model railway magazines! I think it’s a not too subtle hint I need to finish my railway table next.

Do you ever get the impression you have too many hobbies?


Bonnet and boot.

August 23rd, 2015

Right, back onto the car again. My Bombe lived up to it’s name. I accidentally blew it up! That’s what happens when you accidentally  plug a 12 volt SLA into a 5 volt powered computer. So until new parts arrive that project is on hold.

And anyway, with the car, I have no excuses now. Ian is rushing ahead with his and even then he had time to finish sorting out my block for me by cutting seats for my bigger inlet values. He has also cleaned up one inlet tract so I have an example to copy to be able to do the other one myself.

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So this weekend I made bucks for the shape of the bonnet and boot lid which we will be making very soon. Not much to explain here, some bits of plywood cut to the shape the bonnet pieces need to be to fit the car.

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The boot lid was a little trickier as I needed to match the shape of the tail and there is no easy way to trace around it. I used my flexible drawing curve thing and bent that to the shape of the body around the boot opening and transferred the shape to some plywood.

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For the curve along the car I taped a bendy stick to the body, held up on suitably sized blocks, to make the right curve. This was traced onto another piece of plywood that forms the main cross support of the buck.

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I am hoping that is close enough to shape the aluminium to. We have to do the shaping in Joss’ garage and of course the car isn’t there!

Next time I do an order from RS I will get some 1m lengths of stainless rod which we will use as the hinge pins for the bonnet side panels. Now the engine and gearbox are out of the car again I can take the block off to the engineer to get the modification I need done to it.


Chummy wheels.

August 16th, 2015

I finally started on the cars again. The Turing Bombe is still ongoing but nearing the end! I keep getting distracted. I had some giant tress cut down here and am still splitting and stacking wood. I also got up on my roof to clean the guttering and took a few photos.

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The crane in the pictures is the entrance to the new motorway tunnel they are building in Auckland. The hill is Mt Albert, an extinct volcano.

Ian, as well as building his special body, has finished my block for me. He’s but bigger inlet valve seats (with a fancy gadget) and cleaned up some of the ports so I can see how it’s done and finish the rest off myself.

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So he says I have no excuse for not finishing now! I started rebuilding the Chummy wheels so I can get that on the road again. The wheels were all blasted so now I have repaired any small holes (they weren’t too bad) with braze and I am checking the spokes and adjusting them to make the wheels run true. They are quite out it seems!

I am using the front hub on the car as it’s up on stands at the moment. I use a dial gauge, not to get accurate measurements, nut as a moveable pointer. I am just learning how you tweak the spokes to change the shape of the wheel to make it run true. I don’t know how true they need to be though. I guess the faster you go the truer they need to be!

Just getting consistent measurements is difficult. I am figuring as long as I can make them better than they were when they were on the car that’s good. I didn’t notice any issues with them before.

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I have four I can tweak to get right and one I need to fully adjust on so I will make some kind of jig for that. I’ll do the four first, pick the best one and build the jig around that to do the fifth.

Jos also bought around some plywood for me today which I am going to use to make bucks so we can do the aluminium for the boot and bonnet. That is my job for after work this week.

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The other thing I got a few weeks ago was this small grease gun. When cleaning my garage I found my large one had leaked everywhere. It was always a pain to use too so I got this small one. It works very well.

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So with the block done I can pull the crankcase out once I have made the bonnet buck and start looking at getting an engine built!

I just have to not get distracted by other new toys like this old microscope I got for a bargain price!

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Update.

August 3rd, 2015

Just a post so people don’t think I am dead! I’ve been busy with other things. The problem is I have too many projects so I have been working on other things. Mainly building my own version of the Turing-Welchman-Keen Bombe.

But car stuff proceeds slowly. I need to start rebuilding the Chummy wheels. And since Joss is all set up for aluminium work at the moment (making Ian’s special body) I need to make a buck to match my bonnet shape so we can start working on that. Still need to make a seat and a fuel tank and so on and so forth.

I do keep meaning to get back onto the car but I want to get the Bombe machine done first!


Finally finished tidying….

July 19th, 2015

Well, mostly. I still have boxes of random screws and bolts and so on to sort out but I do have my shelves in and everything off the floor now. I bought some decent shelving (1.2m wide and about 2m tall) off TradeMe and assembled that. I bought extra shelves and will use wood of the top of them (I had enough wood to do one so far). That got all the bits and pieces off the floor and tidied away nicely.

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As recommended by Joss the shelves come half way along one side wall leaving a decent amount of space against one wall for sheets of plywood, aluminium, steel, etc. I took out all the light galvanised shelves I had and will see if the local VAR can use them in our spares shed.

I have also added some garage bling. Luckily a friend’s neighbour died (well, not for his widow I guess) and she was cleaning out his ‘junk’ so I got a bunch of locomotive pictures in frames, some railway jigsaw puzzles and some DVDs and books (and a couple of VHS tapes). The pictures look good on the walls and I appreciate the other stuff being something of a railway geek.

I also had a lucky win on TradeMe for this nice dash light. It was described as a blackout light. It has a rotating cover over the bulb. It’s a bit chunky for an Austin 7. Will have to think of something else to use it in. Hmmm, I wonder what?

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I also got all my wheels back from the blasters. Three rims are in good condition and just need the spokes checking. Several had bad rims but one I can repair with some brazing. One rim has narrow spokes and  good rim and hum. I can use that to replace the really bad rim and make a new wheel with thick spokes. That will give me a good set of five for the Chummy. I also bought a set of new inner tubes for them all to go with the new tyres. I can paint four of the rims and at least get the car on the road again then worry about rebuilding the spare later. Of course it’s the middle of winter here so good painting days are hard to find! I did start the poor Chummy today since it’s been so long. I’d like to say she fired right up but there was quite a period of groaning and other odd noises before she fired. Once running for a few minutes though everything seemed good.

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With the big garage clean I’ve been shuffling things back and forth to the small garage. That is also looking nice and tidy now too. The MG and the lawnmower live in there.

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So now I can finally get to the cars in the big garage I need to start thinking about finishing them. I am still distracted by other things though. Mainly finishing off my Bombe!


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