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Go Back   Madabout Kitcars Forum > Mad Build Area > Marlin Sportster, Cabrio, Berlinetta and Roadster builds

Marlin Sportster, Cabrio, Berlinetta and Roadster builds Enthused or Confused about your vintage Marlin build? Ask away here or show off your build.

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  #121  
Old 15th August 2013, 10:08
Mike Mike is offline
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I've had some nice stick on Marlin logo wheel centre discs made by the guy who advertised his services on here a while back.They are very good, and not expensive: a set of 7 (I've fitted one to the gearstick) cost less than 15inc p&p.



I made myself a stainless washer bottle from a spare piece of 90mm diameter exhaust tube squashed into an oval:





....................only to be told by a fellow Marlin builder the minimum tank capacity must be 1 litre, and of course when I checked it was only 900mls !

So........



.............I extended it to follow the profile of my firewall - it looks odd but fits beautifully.

While working with stainless, I made up two new tank straps in stainless, following horror stories of Marlin's thin galv. ones rusting through and a couple of owners having their fuel tanks drop!



To meet IVA rules I've fitted two defelectors beneath my fuel tank and above my two exhaust silencers, as IVA states fuel leakes must not be able to spill directly onto hot surfaces





I wanted the boot floor to be water proof - so have used two sheets of polypropylene: the first had to have cut outs made to fit over bolt heads, fuel sender electrical connectors and various wires: the second fits over the top whole, with sealer between.

Whilst I had the exhaust off I have added a flexi pipe at the front, to remove the rigid section I originally made. This should take a lot of the stress out of my stystem, as I have made the mountings fairly rigid, as I do not have the space for it to move around in the transmission tunnel.

I've changed the rubber 'cotton reel' type exhaust supports, as they had already begun to show signs of perishing, for simple rubber loops. If ever these fail unexpectedly, it is easy now to effect a repair with a bit of wire as a "get you home" fix!

[IMG][/IMG]

I've spent a lot of time sorting out minor panel fit tolerances in the GRP, adding filler and sanding down.









The shut lines are all now consistent at 6mm, and the surfaces are level



In my efforts to improve the boot lid shut lines I ended up with holes that were too big for the bumper struts - rather than try to fill them with filler I fitted a rubber grommet (made from a Sierra front firewall plug with a hole cut to fit) which will better tolerate any vibration between the GRP tub and the steel chassis.



To finish off the rear tub, I need a firewall between the boot and the passenger compartment. This is a sheet of thin ally covered in a very tactile dense foam. I'll have it leathered, and add an embroidered Marlin logo - its surprisingly cheap to get done - 20 for this logo done to full A4 size- and the finished article looks really cool.




I had problems with my original expansion tank emptying, and concluded I did not have enough tank volume above the top of my radiator, so needed to raise my tank, and have at least 500mls capacity. Space under the bonnet with the BMW M50 engine is very limited, so the only place available was on top of the bulkhead, using a long thin tank.
Another piece of spare exhaust tube, squashed into an oval (much harder to do than say!) has made an attractive tank - the stainless pressure neck was difficult to obtain, but AK Sports cars kindly sold me one that they make for their Cobras (and charge their customers 280!!).



My engine bay side panel bugged me ever since I crudely cut a section out to avoid the Metro servo. The itch has now been scratched - after fitting the new Dual servo, I've welded a section back in, and panel beaten it around the two tiny interference points. This looks much better, and makes the panel much stiffer again.




Oh, nearly forgot............after 5 years of looking I have bought a 3.14 diff which really are like rocking horse droppings to find: So I'll re-fit that when everything goes back together. that will be the third diff in my car, and I've not driven it (legally) on the roasd yet!


3.14 diff - very rare these days: as bought, prior to clean up, and new seals being fitted

If anyone wants a very good Sierra 3.38 diff, sand blasted, with new seals all round, PM me or give me a call on 07968 835101.


3.38 diff - sandblasted and fitted with new seals -(set up for Lobro, but can readily be changed to push-in)




Mmmmmmmmmm, didn't think I'd achieved much in the past 12 months, but proof reading this there has been a reasonable amount of progress....................more to follow.................
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  #122  
Old 16th August 2013, 10:33
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Looking good Mike, when is the IVA date??

I have done lots of work on my Hunter rebuild, must get round to posting some pictures. Just about to start putting the loom back together and splice it into the M20 engine management, 18 months for the wiring sounds scary, I was hoping for 3 weeks !!

John
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  #123  
Old 16th August 2013, 11:33
jeremy jeremy is offline
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Mikee, it's looking great, really like the washer bottle and expansion bottle..can i ask where you purchased stainless steel strapping? I have sent your parcel ,it should be with you in 2 days. Regards Jeremy
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  #124  
Old 16th August 2013, 21:47
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Originally Posted by cabrioman View Post
Looking good Mike, when is the IVA date??

I have done lots of work on my Hunter rebuild, must get round to posting some pictures. Just about to start putting the loom back together and splice it into the M20 engine management, 18 months for the wiring sounds scary, I was hoping for 3 weeks !!

John

It probably only took me three weeks in actual time, but I just kept putting it off! It wasn't as bad as I had let myself believe in the end.
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  #125  
Old 16th August 2013, 21:53
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Originally Posted by jeremy View Post
Mikee, it's looking great, really like the washer bottle and expansion bottle..can i ask where you purchased stainless steel strapping? I have sent your parcel ,it should be with you in 2 days. Regards Jeremy
Hi Jeremy
I have "made friends" with several of the lads at a local engineering company who specialise in stainless machines for all the local food companies. They cut me some 40mm wide strips from a 2mm sheet. I then cut them to length and folded them as required by bending in a vice. Quite easy to do.
If you would like to make some for yourself I can get some strips and send them you as a barter for your bumpers? Just let me know, and I 'll gladly organise it?
Mike

PS
Thanks for the bumpers - I look forward to trying them out on the Cabrio.
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  #126  
Old 17th August 2013, 10:05
denniswpearce denniswpearce is offline
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Mike, its looking brilliant. The attention to detail is phenomenal. When you eventually get it finished I can see it will be a close run thing for the awards with you and Mr Cundall
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  #127  
Old 1st October 2013, 21:43
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Default Copying Photos Across?

Why is it not possible to copy photos hosted on the MOC forum by copying their URL and then inserting here?

example:



It shows as a link, not the actual photo?
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  #128  
Old 1st October 2013, 21:57
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You need to be logged in to view the attachment, if you're not you get an error message.

EDIT: The site is using code to pass the image data on to the browser rather than directly accessing the image on the server. Part of the code is an authentication check. The forum permissions have been set so that you must be logged in the view attachments, in this case an image.
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  #129  
Old 1st October 2013, 22:39
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How long can it take to fit one nut?....................TWO AND A HALF HOURS!!!

As my seat belts are fixed to both sides to the seast, the seat mountings to my chassis floor need to be particularly strong. I made a set of load spreader plates from 40x5mm flat steel bar for all 8 seat fixings, and with my son's help began fitting them.
We were able to locate and fit the nuts into the front runners and screw the bolt up into them quite easily, but the back ones certainly tested our patience!

The Audi A4 seats I have used are brilliant to sit in, but they were not designed to be installed into a Marlin Cabrio with very limited access. There is around 100mm maximum clearance at the back of the my seats to the rear chassis cross member, but then the seat runner is hidden a fuirther 100mm underneath and inboard of the seat back. So to fit a nut in the runner meant offering it up blind, by contorting hand and arm, and imagining where i might be.......and that was the easy bit!

We could push the nut along the runner with a finger end, and then line it up over the fixing hole from beneath the car with a screw driver, and even get the bolt started into the nut. However, because I had chosen nyloc nuts to make sure they never vibrate lose, it meant we had to hold the nut quite firmly whilst tightening the bolt head. This was where our problems began.
The passenger seat went in OK, but the drivers seat was a b****y nightmare!
The nut is positioned inside the Audi's narrow U shaped seat runner, so fitting a spanner is a non starter. My normal approach to this situation is to jam a screwdriver between the nut whatever it is close to, to stop it rotating but, because of the limited space and the angle we were working at, this proved impossible: believe me we tried everything!

After two hours of trying and failing our patience was being sorely tested - but they say the darkest hour is just before dawn, and the Marlin ingenuity gene kicked in. I decided I would make a special thin spanner:





The first version did not work as I made the side too thin, and it just splayed open when we tried to tighten the bolt. The Mark 2 version, seen above, worked perfectly. After 21/2 hours struggling we were able to do it up within a couple of minutes.
Quite satisfying in a perverse sort of way!

Big Milestone
From the day I took delivery of my kit it has stood on a pair of home made mobile chassis stands. (Marlin offer to hire these but at their extortionate rates, and my slow build it would have doubled the cost of my build!). These stands have been fantastic, making access underneath easy, and to move the car around to get better access to each side. If any one is considering, or in the middle of, a major restoration I can not recommmend these mobile stands enough.
Fitting the seat spreader plates was the last task major I needed to perform under my car, so the time had finally arrived when I could take the momentous step of lower my Cabrio down from its stands, and hopefully dispense with them for good.



Before finally going ahead, I decided to change my wheel/tyres to narrower ones which will go through IVA without concern - my intended wheels are marginal on width relative to the wing sides.
My donor Sierra pepperpot alloys are in remarkably good condition, but two of the tyres were bald, so I bought a pair of scrapyard steel wheels and tyres for 10 the pair. I know they look awful, but the IVA test does not legislate against poor style or taste ......... yet!



Off Its Stands

So finally...................



Sad End to "My Best Marlin Birthday Present"
It was quite fitting that the same weekend I took my car off its stands, my mechanics crawler board, which has been my best "Marlin Birthday Present" - and I've had a few - gave up the ghost and fell apart. It has been brilliant - again thoroughly recommended if you have a flat floor to work on. It made life so much easier.



Honey, I've Shrunk the Cabrio
After 7 years of seeing my Cabrio on stands it now looks awfully small, and very low sat on its own wheels - its going to take some getting used to.

Sump clearance was always going to be an issue, as it is with most Marlins. With these gash wheels I have 140mm (5 1/2"), and reckon with my chosen wheels and tyres this will go up to around 155mm (6"), though it may settle to below this. There is not much I can do, other than resort to a special sump and pump feed, which will cost a fortune.



Not having to fit CATs has been a real bonus - my exhaust seems to be fine despite running the length of the car under the chassis.

Count Down To IVA
My list of "Jobs to do before IVA" has ceased to be so infinitely long that I have dared to create a definitive spreadsheet of tasks and times to complete. At the beginning of the weekend there were 23 items: and I reckoned I had around 70 hours work to do before I felt it would have a fighting chance of passing .

Rear Wing Extension
The rear wings on a Cabrio do not meet the IVA requirement to cover the rear tyre down an imaginary horizontal line 150mm above the wheel centre line: extensions are required:



These were easy to make from stainless (ally would have been easier still, but I felt would be too soft, and not look like they were meant to be permanent. Stainless would go with the rest of my Cabrio, but is a pig of a job to drill for fixings, so I decided to glue them on using thick black body underseal gunge and clamps. Hopefully it will not prove too succesful, as I expect to "fall off" post IVA.

VIN Plate
What a pain!

Some time ago I decided it might be a good idea to contact my intended VOSA test station to seek their views on how to present my Cabrio, and hopefully have them "on-side" on my test day. One of the items that came up in conversation with Andy (we are on first name terms!) was the VIN plate. He takes a very literal view of the IVA rules, and insisted the only two details that must appear on a VIN - "The Make of Car", and "The Chassis Number" should appear in a separate box, with the "Make" in CAPITALS, at least 3.5mm high. There must be nothing else in the same box - not even "Cabrio".

So this is the result, a minimalist VIN plate with a separate box for the essential information, and another for the non essential blurb!
Despite the trials and tribulations along the way, I'm pleased with it:



(Many thanks to Jason for helping with the design)

My tester had better not have any objections to it!!

Oh, and of course, it has to be located on the offside in an easily accessible position!



The steel bar over the heater cowl is a stiffener I've added to help strengthen the pedal box at the rear. It works very well, preventing its rotation and flexing when the brake is applied.


And at the end of the weekend, I've knocked off two jobs and 7 hours from my list............and I've still got 23 jobs and 70 hours work, as I found two other tasks that I'd over looked! Will I ever get there?!
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  #130  
Old 1st October 2013, 22:51
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrick View Post
You need to be logged in to view the attachment, if you're not you get an error message.

EDIT: The site is using code to pass the image data on to the browser rather than directly accessing the image on the server. Part of the code is an authentication check. The forum permissions have been set so that you must be logged in the view attachments, in this case an image.

Hi Patrick

I am logged into both sites, yet it does not show the photo when I copy my own thread across from the MOC site - it just shows the link.

I have had to copy across the photos and implant them one by one from my flickr site.

It has worked, but there must be an easier way?
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  #131  
Old 2nd October 2013, 12:13
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Seeing your progress brings back memories.... It must be over five years now that I was getting to that exciting almost complete stage. In another couple of years I might be there again haha.

Mike - could you tell me how you fixed the VIN plate? I was under the impression they had to be welded on or at least fixed in a way they couldn't be removed. I would like to do something similar on the Pembleton (which doesn't currently have any markings on the chassis).

Cheers, Robin
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  #132  
Old 2nd October 2013, 16:54
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the VIN plate doesn't need to be welded on but it must be permenantly fixed so rivets are acceptable. Obviously nothing is truly permenant if you're that determined to remove it but I think for instance screws or sticky pads wouldn't pass
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  #133  
Old 2nd October 2013, 21:20
Mike Mike is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MartinClan View Post
Seeing your progress brings back memories.... It must be over five years now that I was getting to that exciting almost complete stage. In another couple of years I might be there again haha.

Mike - could you tell me how you fixed the VIN plate? I was under the impression they had to be welded on or at least fixed in a way they couldn't be removed. I would like to do something similar on the Pembleton (which doesn't currently have any markings on the chassis).

Cheers, Robin

Hi Robin

Yes it is the exciting/scary stage - my local test centre rang today and left a message asking what date I wanted for my test?
I 've had a long panic on my 2 hour drive home from work tonight and have decided to push it back a couple of weeks!

I have used plain head polished stainless steel rivet screws - the head is polished smooth with no slot or allen keyway, so it is "difficult" to undo the nuts from the back because there is no easy way of holding the rivet from going around.
Of course they could take the view that they are not "difficult" enough. If they do, I will change the nut to an ordinary stainless nut and apply a tiny spot weld.

I also have the original Marlin stamped logo plate VIN number, which was welded on the near side, bulkhead, (which I removed in less than 60 seconds with an angle grinder and slitting disk) and will weld this back onto the chassis, on the offside of the bulkhead.


Edit:
I was happy that my plain head screws would be enough, but as an after thought I will spot weld ordinary nuts on to the rivets before going for the test- but it will mean I have to grind them off to get the GRP cover painted. Oh what fun!

I wonder if they will claim that the GRP panel is not secure enough then?
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  #134  
Old 2nd October 2013, 21:45
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I would stick it directly on a metal part of the chassis as they could argue that although the plate is well secured, there's nothing to stop you replacing the GRP
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  #135  
Old 3rd October 2013, 06:39
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Chris Cussen Chris Cussen is offline
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When I IVAed my Cabrio the VIN plate was pop-riveted on the bulkhead. It did fail however because
1. The Marlin chassis number was mounted on the N/S and not the O/S as required.
2. The chassis number was split over two lines and had spaces that 'could' have had extra characters inserted in to it.

As a result I stamped the chassis number directly into the bulkhead next to the VIN plate and this seemed acceptable.
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  #136  
Old 10th October 2013, 22:03
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Default The Uxbridge Wobble

Major Setback - Front Hub "Wobble"


Just when all seemed to be going well..................I have the "Uxbridge wheel wobble".
( So named after "Peterux" who had the same problem earlier this year).

Whilst swapping my wheels over I discovered some play in the front hub/axle, but was not sure where from. After removing the wheel and testing and testing I became convinced it was in the bearings - this was particularly annoying as they are new.

So, I stripped off the brake calliper and beat the upper and lower tapered ball joints out, and finally the track rod end ball joint. Once free I could hold the hub in the vice, and sure enough the bearing has play in it. Oddly, as with Peterux, (and hence the reference), the play can only be felt when testing across the East-West pivot.ie holding North - South and trying to rock it. It does not appear to rock on the North -South axis?

I've spoken to the guy who supplied me the hubs re-furbished, fitted with new bearings and torqued up to 215ft lbs, and he is very surprised. Hopefully when I take them back he will accept they are faulty and replace the pair?

Quite a few hours wasted, and another job to do.
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  #137  
Old 4th November 2013, 18:33
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Default IVA Test Tomorrow

Its amazing how time flies when you are enjoying yourself............or are under pressure to get your car ready for an IVA Test.

Mine will commence at 8.30am on Tuesday Novemebr 5th - and I guess by 12.30pm I'll know what I have to do to get a pass!

Quite looking forward to it now its finally arrived.

Mike
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  #138  
Old 4th November 2013, 19:19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike View Post
Its amazing how time flies when you are enjoying yourself............or are under pressure to get your car ready for an IVA Test.

Mine will commence at 8.30am on Tuesday Novemebr 5th - and I guess by 12.30pm I'll know what I have to do to get a pass!

Quite looking forward to it now its finally arrived.

Mike
Best wishes and good luck for a first time pass tomorrow!!

....peter
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  #139  
Old 4th November 2013, 19:48
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Good luck, we'll all have our fingers cross for you
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  #140  
Old 7th November 2013, 12:39
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Default My IVA Test Day

November 5th 2013 - My Cabrio IVA Test Day

The day didn't start too well - at 5.30am it was wet, requiring us to fix a tarpaulin over the cabin:



Towing with an A-Frame is an absolute doddle - so much easier than a trailer. Highly recommended.

Despite leaving ourselves 45 minutes spare, the traffic into Nottingham was awful and we eventually arrived 10 minutes late - not a good way to start the test. However, I had phoned ahead, and Martin, our tester, made nothing of it.

Alan Hogg had kindly offered to come along to the test for moral support, along with David Sidall, and arrived in his very nicely prepared Cabrio - it really did make mine look bare, without paintwork.

As soon as we had removed the tarpaulin we were directed into the test bay, and the examination began:




Inside the car he looked for sharp edges - no comment about my gash dash. He used two aluminium half moon dumbells, one 165mm diameter, and one 100mm (representations of ones head and knee) to test for access to sharp edges.
All seemed OK.
Then he looked in the drivers footwell and produced my brake pedal clevis pin! It had jarred loose on our journey to the station, because I had either forgotten to fit the retaining clip, or at some point it had come off without me realising. What kind of initial impression did that create? I felt awful.
Martin however took it in his stride - he's seen plenty of lorries with similar faults where the star washer has fallen off - and accepted I could fit a bolt and nyloc to replace it.

The cabin passed, except for one item - a new one to me - the side window top edge failed the radius test. They had been ground, but not sufficiently to meet the 2.5mm radius test.
When I asked how I could remedy this with an electric window, Martin advised fitting rubber channel over the exposed edge with the window up - he is not bothered that they are electric and could go down - he tests the car as presented. So, what I thought was a show stopper was going to be easy to fix on the day.

He asked about my seats, and their anchorage, as I have attached the seatbelts to them, and was satisfied by my photos of the seats in an Audi A4, then out of the A4, showing the runners, and fixings, and that I had fitted them exactly the same in my car, and fitted spreader plates beneath them.

All the controls were checked, and then he told me the special Cartek Fog light switch (which cost me 40) is not compulsory! Thanks!

Martin was happy with almost all of the outside of the car - he was going to pull the washer jets for lack of radius, and took issue with the radius on the front bumper. He then passed the rear bumpers - made of the same 5mm stainless: but to be fair there was a section about 75mm long where the radiusing had not been prepared very well on the front bumper. My fault for not thoroughly checking, but I had my angle grinder with me, so could soon deal with that, and then re-polish it at home.

Then another issue - again my own fault: the old Sierra tyres I'd fitted were different. I knew that - I had deliberately fitted the 195 profiles at the rear and the 185s on the front, to try to help with self centring. What I did not notice was a 60 profile on one side, and a 65 profile on the other. Twit.
Unfortunately the spare I had taken along was one of my new wheels, which is a different size again - but it would have failed on a rim edge radius so that was ruled out as a replacement.
Alan then suggested we could borrow two wheels from his Cabrio, just to get through the test - Thanks Alan - very noble of you!

Before going up on the ramps he tested the speedometer, which was fine - I did well to set it up right with two different sized tyres on the back axle!

The emissions were tested for a 1993 engine, and were well inside the limits.

It then went up on the ramps with me in it, being directed to press the brake pedal, or turn the steering wheel, or flick switches.









There then seemed to be a delay, but Dad advised the issue was the engine number. I had explained earlier I had a letter from BMW confirming the year of manufacture, which Martin was pleased to note. By this stage the test was going much better, and Martin was clearly warming to my Cabrio. He took some time to find the engine number, using emery paper, and yellow chalk until he could read it. This was well beyond his obligation to test what he could see, but we were close now.

Next came the lights test. Martin checked the basic functions, then without prompting adjusted the headlights to give the required settings.

The penultimate test was the brake test. Foot brake - both front and rear were good.


But then the show stopper................the hand brake failed, not generating sufficient force. The test reading figure must equate 18% of the vehicle Design Weight, but did not reached it. But, maybe we could come back to it?



The final test was the noise - and it read 96db, just as my own cheap meter, and well inside the 99bd limit.

So, my initial test was a technical fail, but maybe we could address the small items for a pass on the day.

The Design Weight figures that I had submitted were made up, in the abscence of any meaningful figures from Marlin, and were too high at 1600kg.
My car's self weight with a tank full of fuel was weighed at 960kg on the day.
Allowing 150kgs for passengers they calculated a gross weight of 1,110kg. Martin advised a Design Weight of 1300kg was more realistic. Perhaps if I "re-submitted" my figures the hand brake would be acceptable? Martin did the calculations, but they were only good for 880kg.

So we went back up on the ramp, to adjust the hand brake cable, to generate more force. At this point the examiner was willing us to pass, and it was him adjusting the hand brake nylon nut, but despite his best efforts the cable would not tighten - the outer cable just kept slipping through the nylon nut.

This was a show stopper.

There was no way I could change the hand brake cable, as the standard Sierra inner cable for a disc brake car, has to be shortened, before it can be fitted.

So, despite Alan very kindly offering to loan me his wheels, there would be no point.

My Cabrio was officially recorded as failing the test.

Two sharp edges, one incorrect tyre, the brake clevis pin and a failed handbrake adjuster. (the washer jets were not recorded on the final document).

How do I feel about it?

The test itself is thorough, and I found the examiner (Martin) totally fair, and towards the end, very clearly wanted us to pass. He spent quite a while cleaning the engine block, to determine the number, and longer still trying to adjust the Sierra handbrake cable. When it became clear the nut had failed he even gave me the name of a local one man garage with a lift that I could go and change the cable.............and I would have done, were it not for the need to shorten the inner cable, but this is not a quick job.

From a personal perspective, I'll be honest, there is a large part of me that is very disappointed. Peter Edwards had encouraged me to aim high, and he was right: why plan to fail? I aimed for a first time pass, and a new (sub) standard Ford component has let me down.
My car was not perfect - the unequal tyres, and the brake clevis pin were embarassing, but they, and the two sharp edges could have been resolved in less than an hour, and a pass on the day would have been possible.

On the bright side, I have an afternoons work changing the handbrake cable, and 10 minutes pressing some rubber edging onto the windows, and front bumper, to be able to go back for an assured pass.

So close........................

Before signing off, and despite not quite passing, may I take this opportunity to thank everyone on the Madabout site who has helped me along the way. I know people say it, but it is true: without you this would not have been possible. This is going to sound like a BAFTA awards night and it may be unfair to single individuals out for praise, but I do want to thank : Chris Cunliffe, Simon Gregory, Peter Edwards, and Nigel Beats particuarly for their technical help and advice with my build. Chris Cunliffe, who built the first BMW M50 Cabrio, and drove 150 miles to meet me half way (between Lincoln and Exeter!) to allow me to try his Cabrio before deciding to buy an M50 based Cabrio kit: Simon will see one or two of his ideas blatantly copied into my car: Peter has been a great role model with his Sportster build, and offering encouragement, and Nigel who, quite literally, got my engine going!

For those of you too numerous to mention who have had a real input in to my car, and you know who you are - may I wish you all a very big thank you.

Last but not least - how do I say a big enough thank you to my wife, Sue, who has put up with me taking 8 years to build my car? In the usual way of course - we're going away for a 3 day weekend with friends tomorrow!

Many thanks to all: not far to go now!

Mike
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