Monday, 25 February 2013

Viewing side-on.

No progress this weekend due to family and work commitments but useful progress this evening.  The main side panels are now attached.

Almost there with the 'skinninig' - for now at least.

Monday, 18 February 2013

All is (foot)well.

I always knew that panelling the footwells on the Gemini would be more difficult than a Locost, MNR or similar.  The tubes top-to-bottom and left-to-right aren't parallel requiring significant jiggery-pokery and at least two panels per footwell.  As someone (the aforementioned MEV builder Simon) pointed out, Dave and I are "doing serious coachwork and will be working for Morgan soon."  Errr, I'm pretty sure that we won't be happening but thanks for the compliment all the same.  Incidentally, the wood in some of the pictures isn't a Morgan-esque Ash frame.  It's just there to try to stop the panels from getting too nagered before its strictly necessary.
After several cardboard templates and at least 3-days of solid effort, we're finally there.  On the driver's side I had to strike the balance between having enough room for the pedals to fully articulate and making sure that the panel didn't foul the reverse (Civic starter) motor.  To be fair, this has worked out quite nicely.  We took a slightly different approach on the passenger side as, with no starter motor in the way, we could push the panel forward a little more to create room for the battery and still allow plenty of room for a passenger.  
Kate doesn't know it yet but she's going to drive on track while I squirm about next to her.
The passenger panel will be covered with heat resistant glass/foil material to help protect the battery from the exhaust heat.
After the twists and turns of the footwells, the tunnel sides, or at least half of the tunnel sides were an absolute doddle by comparison.  The other side is being left until we've got the cables, prop catcher etcetera down the tunnel.
If you ignore the fact that the rear tunnel cover isn't sat in the right spot and then imagine the aluminium after a good polish, you can get an idea of what the interior will look like.  As if it wasn't obvious.

In my defence, it's been a long day and bed beckons. ZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

Saturday, 9 February 2013

Tunnel Vision

A productive afternoon today after a slow morning.

It seems to me that smart plastic pipe clips are far more abundant than they were when I last built a car. It seems a shame not to use them.  Hence, I'm not spending a small fortune on p-clips for the Gemini.

These plastic clips can permit you to attach pipes and cables in a much more space-efficient way than might otherwise be achieved, at least unless you're just bundling stuff together with zip-ties.  The IVA inspector doesn't like untidy bundles and since IVA is something that I might want to explore, I need the neater option.

The only issue that I can see with the plastic clips is that they attach to flat surfaces in such a way that the joint isn't water tight (unlike a gas-tight blind rivet).  Hence, I don't want to attach them directly to the chassis tube as they might allow moisture in and cause corrosion.  So, what to do?
The answer is to compromise a teeny bit on weigh and double-skin the main tunnel section where I want to use the clips.  In the photo above the clips nearest the camera will take two 8mm fuel pipes (one to the swirl pot and one return) plus a 6mm(ish) brake line.  The clips on furthest from the camera are for the 7-core trailer cable that carries electricity from the front of the car to the back.  There's a small length of the cable visible in the clip in the middle of the shot; just checking.
Also visible in the second photo is a reasonably chunky piece of aluminium angle which is riveted to the tube at the top of the tunnel.  As well as providing a firm mounting point for the middle of the rear bulkhead, it also provides a nice mounting point for the fixed portion of the slide latches that will hold the cover for the back of the tunnel in place.  The clamps are just there to make sure that the PU can do its bonding job.
Now for something that makes me happy: I'd had the dash mount panel water-jet cut ages ago and welded it to the column without being sure that it actually fitted.  I had to open up the little bolt holes where the powdercoat had shrunk them but, that aside, it's perfect.  I'm using the ETB Digidash 2 Lite with infra-red lap timer upgrade.
I can't wait to start permanently bolting the exciting parts on.  In the mean time, the footwells are proving to be a pain to panel.  More on this next time.


Oh, by the way - I was beaten to my preferred #41, so will be racing with Kate's lucky number i.e. #57.