Sunday, 27 November 2011

Whining and grinding.

To be honest I've been a bit troubled of late.  On the one hand I've been looking at the spreadsheet that I've constructed to estimate the cost of the build.  On the other hand I've been looking at the cost of our wedding.  Kate and I are very fortunate that we both have good jobs and earn decent money.  However the car and the wedding are both significant projects and I'd started to fret.  What brings the issue into stark contrast is the availability of race-ready machinery at a fraction of the build cost.  The sensible thing would undoubtedly be to go out and buy one of these cars and get back to racing - something which I'm now missing more than ever.

However, the fact remains, I intend to complete one build and I've come a long way and invested a lot of cash already.  So, having flirted with the idea of either moth-balling the Gemini or even selling up and buying some turn-key solution, I've resolved to carry on. Thankfully the future Mrs C is hugely supportive, if probably fed-up of me talking about cars.  The only slight change is that, whereas Plan A was 'Gold Standard' throughout, Plan B will probably leave some room for later upgrades.  So, for example hubs will probably be reconditioned OE stuff rather than lightweight aluminium and brake pipes will now be kunifer and braided rather than top-of-the-range Goodridge throughout.  These type of decisions will be relatively small beer providing I'm out racing in 2012.

Anyway, I have done a bit to the car.  Roll bar mounts have been rather exercising my grey matter as the chassis was never really designed to have a full cage fitted. I think I've got it sussed now and have sent a couple of drawings away to get brackets water-jet cut and fabricated.

 I even spent a happy morning making models!
I've also started making the necessary mods to the chassis.  Hopefully my fabrication skills will improve with practice; it's taking me an age to cut and file tubes such that they are a half-decent fit!

I'm on the hunt for a suitable R1 motor and I plan to order my bodywork when I'm in Lancashire with work next week.  I still haven't fixed my welder.  MUST DO THAT THIS WEEK!


Saturday, 5 November 2011


Before I attempt to construct a to-weld list, I must commend the team that I supported at the Birkett 6 Hour Relay Race as Silverstone on Saturday 29th October.  The guys were all very quick and ran faultlessly.  The result was a 'scratch' class win. Uber-Mega. I'm not going to give a blow-by-blow account of the day.  Others are much more able than I in this regard.  For example, click Dr Bob's linky-doo-dah on the right hand side if you are interested.  What I would say is that although its an enjoyable day, it's not easy - and I inevitably get cold and wet at some stage.  I actually hope that it's my last year 'taking part' as an administrator.  I'd best get some work done then...

I'm a bit fearful of rushing this list as it will hopefully be a really useful reference. Thankfully I can edit blog entries so here goes.  The list at this stage only covers the chassis itself and not things that hang-pff it.
  • Front ARB mounts
  • Radiator mounts
  • Oil cooler mounts
  • Engine mounts (taking inspiration from Wyn)
  • Electric reverse mounts - I'm a bit worried about clearance - more in a later post
  • Additional tube at bottom-front of the transmission tunnel
  • Gear shift pivot mount
  • Pedal box mount
  • Prop catchers x 2 
  • Some side impact protection (tbc)
  • Engine undertray Dzus tabs
  • Tunnel cover Dzus tabs
  • Rear undertray mounts/suppots
  • Front roll cage mounts - I'm not 100% sure how best to do these yet
  • Steering column mounts (top and bottom) - to incorporate paddle-shift mounts
  • Crotch strap mounts for 6-poiint harness
  • Fuel tank bobbins
  • Replace hindmost tubes with something capable of supporting roll cage rearward supports
  • Roll cage mounts for the above
  • Tow strap mounts
  • Rear ARB mounts (need to discuss with Dave at Track Developments)
  • Bracket for rear brake line & cable at rear of tunnel.
And that's before I've tried to fit the body and worked out if that needs anything different.  

I'd better get my welder fixed.