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Go Back   Madabout Kitcars Forum > Mad Build Area > Seven Style builds

Seven Style builds Westfields, Caterham, Dax Rush, Luego, Robin Hood, Tiger, Locust, MK, RAW, Quantum, you name it, you're building it, share it here.

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  #1  
Old 22nd June 2022, 08:46
Mick O'Malley Mick O'Malley is offline
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Default Dutton Dementia

Having abandoned and sold (to a top bloke - he drove up from Crediton to Gloucester just to hand over the cash in advance of collection) the scarcely started Marlin Madness project (thread next door). I'm now going to focus on the Phaeton II. I moved it into the now vacated cave a couple of days ago ready to start the action.



First job will be removing the huge flip front with its integral wings and headlamps and sawing off same as I'll be fitting clam shell wings. I'll then remove the rest of the bodywork to facilitate refurbishing the chassis prior to offering up the 'Climax' engine and gearbox. With any luck some more pictures will appear soon .

Regards, Mick
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  #2  
Old 22nd June 2022, 17:46
Mick O'Malley Mick O'Malley is offline
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Default A bit of a start :)

This morning, flushed with enthusiasm for my new project, I went down to the already scorching cave and pitched in. First job was to remove the huge, and to my eyes ugly, front. It's a beast!



Next, out with the sumptuously upholstered seats .



Then the rear end gubbins.



Followed by the attack of the panel saw - very satisfying - halfway there...



Once the other ghastly bloated front wing/headlamp was excised, I popped on the now svelte bonnet to admire her new open wheeler look.



I stowed all the bits removed in my own shed and called it a day in the blistering heat. A decent start.

Regards, Mick
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  #3  
Old 22nd June 2022, 21:47
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redratbike redratbike is offline
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looks better already

good start
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  #4  
Old 23rd June 2022, 15:39
Mick O'Malley Mick O'Malley is offline
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Thumbs up Nibbling away

Today I decided to attack the scuttle/dash/steering column/heater area.

I'd removed the windscreen and wipers yesterday and, as the column went through the dash, I attacked it first. Pretty straightforward, but time consuming and fiddly, as the builder had wisely fitted a second support, bolted to the substantial pedal box, for the outer column. This home made bracket included a single bolt attachment for the Mk1 Mini heater which otherwise simply sat on the transmission tunnel. I'd fitted one of these in my first Phaeton, blanking off the passenger side outlets so that all the heat went to my feet, or on start up with the flap closed, to the sole screen demister vent I'd fitted to my side. It worked a treat.

As access to the back of the dash was seriously limited, even when I performed my upside down in the footwell contortions, I next drilled out the scuttle's pop rivets, which gave just enough access to wangle out the heater and disconnect and remove the clocks and switches. The wiper rack fought me for a while but blacksmith methods saw it yield. After stowing these bits away I sat on a cross member in the engine bay and began removing the loom and solenoids, feeding the former back through the bulkhead into the footwell. There seems to be an awful lot of wiring for such a simple car? I'll remove it all carefully, even though I'll be fabricating a replacement a la Monaco from a Spitfire loom I have in the shed. I love wiring! Today's contortions having taken their toll on my ageing body I called it a day.





Regards, Mick
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  #5  
Old 24th June 2022, 15:48
Mick O'Malley Mick O'Malley is offline
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Default More nibbling...

Time was at a premium today, so I only managed a couple of hours. Starting in the engine bay, I unclipped all the sections of the loom in front of the bulkhead and fed them through to the footwell. Before I could go any further I had to tear out the carpet, not that easy in places where it was attached with King Kong double sided tape . I then attacked the boot area, removing the lamp units etc. I decided to not cut the front to rear portion which runs under the seat bucket, but leave it in place for continuity testing - it might be good for re-use. The builder and/or subsequent owners certainly liked their reel of blue cable and the length of yellow/green domestic for earth!



I'm unsure whether to remove the seat bucket as I could well be making a rod for my own back. I'll have a good crawl about underneath tomorrow before deciding.

Regards, Mick
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  #6  
Old 25th June 2022, 12:20
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Watching with interest as it is bringing back memories of my build over 40 years ago.
As I remember the seat tub was extremely flimsy. You may want to check yours with a possible view to reinforcement!
The other thing etched into my memory, in addition to the poor steering column support, is that the handbrake mechanism on the top of the rear axle used to hit the underside of the boot floor. In the end I just cut a hole and covered it with carpet. Sigh.... those were the days.
Cheers Robin
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  #7  
Old 25th June 2022, 17:26
Mick O'Malley Mick O'Malley is offline
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Exclamation Aching all over

Quote:
Originally Posted by MartinClan View Post
Watching with interest as it is bringing back memories of my build over 40 years ago.
Cheers Robin
Yes, it's all coming back to me also. It was 40 years ago last month that I hired a dingy trailer and towed it down to Worthing behind my ex Post Office van 'Mini Traveller' with my brother in law riding shotgun. It took me four and a half years to get it on the road, but I did have four children and two cottages to renovate at the time, as well as a 60 mile round trip to Bristle each weekday. Happy Days!

The guy picking up the Marlin was due this morning at 1000 but was over an hour late due to heavy traffic, so the morning was a write off. Good fun loading up, he had a cracking anecdote about a Spartan he went to collect which was crammed with bits and full of water which he couldn't drain. His description of the sloshing activity on the motorway viewed in his mirror was hilarious.



This afternoon I jacked up the near side high enough to worm underneath and spray the prop to axle, handbrake mounting, and seat belt attachment bolts with dismantling liquid. I then removed the high-tech side exhaust mounting bracket (drilled for lightness!) which I'm sure would otherwise sooner or later have scalped me.



Whilst waiting for the penetrating liquid to do its job, I drilled out the seriously overkill number of rivets attaching the seat tub to the frame and gently levered it away from the surrounding body panels. Now, only the handbrake and belt mountings stood in the way of tub removal. Worming back underneath I found the the prop would have to come off for handbrake mounting bolt clearance. The lack of room for leverage on these defeated me, despite profanity and skinned knuckles, so I called it a day, reasonably satisfied with progress. I'm definitely not getting any younger!

Regards, Mick
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  #8  
Old 26th June 2022, 12:49
Mick O'Malley Mick O'Malley is offline
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Default Tub torture.

Following yesterday's abortive prop. bolt attempt, I today jacked her up from the rear to increase the gap so that I could improve leverage. With a meaty screwdriver through the yoke to prevent rotation, I succeeded.

Now that I could see the handbrake mounting bolts more clearly, my brain suddenly clicked into gear and I realised that disconnecting the cable at the lever end would do just as well. I had to cut the inner at the axle end and lever off the hose clip locating the outer inside the tub. Job done.

Examining the seat belt mountings more closely revealed that they were rusted solid onto a convoluted bar welded to the frame each side. OK, if I cut it just outside the outer belt mounting each side it could come out with the tub. Off with the back wheels and, unsurprisingly, there was barely room to get the angle grinder in a suitable position. A combination of cuts, cold chiselling, parting of digestive biscuit strength welds, and work hardening with the ends Mole Gripped finally achieved the necessary clearance. A few minutes wrestling had the tub free at last.



The bar can be seen looping around the inside of the tunnel. I can't remember how Tim Dutton expected builders to anchor the lower mounts, clearly the rather flimsy tub wouldn't be man enough. I'll dig out the photo' of my 80s solution and post it.

Regards, Mick
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  #9  
Old 26th June 2022, 13:30
Mick O'Malley Mick O'Malley is offline
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Default Low tech, picture of prints!

I found the picture mentioned above, as well as the one I took at TDW's place. In the background can be seen a completed Sierra, a Melos and another Phaeton, both awaiting pick-up.



This is the bolt on frame I fabricated to locate the bottom seat belt mountings. It was 1.5" steel angle welded together. The LH holes (as you look at it) coincided with the gearbox mounting, the centre ones bolted to a cross member, and the RH four are for the belts. I'll definitely do the same again.

Regards, Mick
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  #10  
Old 26th June 2022, 14:41
Mick O'Malley Mick O'Malley is offline
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Lightbulb D'Oh!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mick O'Malley View Post
I can't remember how Tim Dutton expected builders to anchor the lower mounts...
I just went back down to the cave and remembered when I looked at the frame: there are four nuts welded to a cross member, which is way too far forward for a realistic lap portion of a belt. Looking at my frame picture, its middle bar was bolted to these.



I'm glad I didn't use them as intended, although I doubt any reasonably diligent MOT tester would OK them...

Regards, Mick
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  #11  
Old 27th June 2022, 09:52
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Hi Mick,
Following your updates with interest. It is fascinating to see how flimsy these early kit cars were. I guess they were built for lightness and low cost. By comparison my Sabre has 4 inch square chassis rails and is built like a battleship but there again John Barlow only sold about 150 kits partly, I suspect, due to the cost of the kit.
Looking forward to the rebuild.
Cheers, Peter
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  #12  
Old 28th June 2022, 10:37
Mick O'Malley Mick O'Malley is offline
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Thumbs up Panel saw to the rescue

Thanks for your interest Robin and Peter, most welcome!

Today I set about taking out the footwell/front bulkhead moulding. A combination of drilling rivets and chiselling off the less accessible heads soon had it free of the frame, apart from the easily released hydraulic pipe to master cylinder nuts. Despite about 20 minutes of wrestling and head scratching, I couldn't manoeuvre it to a position where it looked even likely to come out, the inward taper of the front of the frame defeating me. I think it must have been put in with KY Jelly and a couple of biffers jumping on it. OK, so out with the trusty go-to panel saw and the job was done .



I can now bolt the engine and gearbox together, dangle them from the crane and work out mountings.



I'm still undecided whether it's worth taking off the back body. The frame is very sound, and as long as the fuel tank doesn't leak I think leaving well alone is the better option. It looks as though the tank is the third to be fitted, the hole in the back panel looking very Mk1 or 2 Cortina (as TDW intended).



The glassed in opening next to the nearside wing hints at Mini Van/Traveller or maybe estate versions of the above. Who knows? My original Phaeton had the saloon tank with a stub welded on top to have the cap in the Spitfire position.



Regards, Mick
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  #13  
Old 29th June 2022, 12:33
Mick O'Malley Mick O'Malley is offline
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This morning's sortie down to the sunlit cave saw me wheeling the skeletal Phaeton out of the way, dragging the gearbox from the shed, erecting the crane, and releasing the engine from its home of late - my sack truck.



I put a block under the rear of the sump so that the engine sloped slightly down, roped the 'box to the crane and offered it up. It was reluctant to slide the last few centimetres home, despite rotating the output shaft, so I removed the cover and driven plates so that only the first motion shaft needed to engage. That did the trick. Once the connecting bolts were tight I roped the unit to the crane and parked it to one side, allowing me to wheel the skeleton back.



Happy with completing another small step, and wishing to quit while I was ahead, I decided to leave the offering up for another day.

Regards, Mick
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  #14  
Old 4th July 2022, 10:13
Mick O'Malley Mick O'Malley is offline
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Default A tiny step...

There's a glut of family birthdays at this time of year, so I've only had one quick session in the cave since last posting. I decided to determine the engine mounting position without dangling it in the frame. I laid a plank across the transverse rails, and another to replicate the angle of the seat back, and sat in with a batten across the top rails in front of me. This enabled me to work out where the gear stick would fall to hand without hitting the dash in 1st and 3rd. Carefully worming out I marked the side rails with tape.



Rolling the chassis back until my marks aligned perfectly with the gearstick, I then used the batten to mark the centres of the engine mounting points on the engine bay rails. Rubbish photo' alert - the blue felt tip lines are barely visible...



My first project related purchase is pictured here - repro. rubber plinths for the Lucas L516 sidelights which will grace the flared front wings .



Regards, Mick
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  #15  
Old 4th July 2022, 20:32
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Default Engine leveller

Hi Mick,
I highly recommend you put one of these on your birthday list.

(The load leveller, not the engine )

Engine fitting by Sabrebuilder, on Flickr

It makes it a doddle to position the engine and gearbox at exactly the right angle and as it uses chains it it so much safer than ropes, particularly if you are working on your own.
Mine was a really good investment.
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  #16  
Old 5th July 2022, 22:29
Mitchelkitman Mitchelkitman is offline
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When I dismantled an Escort 1100 to build a dutton, many, many years ago I suspended the engine on some string from the sides of the engine bay (must have been about 3mm thick string) ....... Mind you- I wouldn't have put any body parts underneath it, but it supported the engine until I cut it with a handy pair of scissors.
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  #17  
Old 6th July 2022, 07:29
Mick O'Malley Mick O'Malley is offline
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Talking of dangerously suspending engines, in the 60s, a schoolfriend had a 105E for which he'd bought a 1500 GT Cortina lump. For the swap we opened wide his dad's wooden garage doors, wedged underneath them and rested a bit of 4x2 across their tops to take the Haltrac. It just about did the job, but the creaks and groans from the warping doors were very worrying. Happy Days .

Back to the Phaeton. The guy from whom I'd bought the engine gave me a stack of associated bits and pieces including the front cross member from the donor. It had the rack and anti-roll bar attached - a clever piece of engineering. They didn't offer much resistance to being removed and I could then rest the remains across the frame rails in the engine bay.



I'm fairly certain that, once the existing mountings have been excised (I'll enjoy that!) I can suitably modify the cross member (after cutting off the redundant brackets) and get it welded to the frame.

Regards, Mick

Last edited by Mick O'Malley; 7th July 2022 at 08:14.. Reason: Typo.
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  #18  
Old 1st August 2022, 14:42
Mick O'Malley Mick O'Malley is offline
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Unhappy Internet Woes

I posted a couple of times about three weeks ago - or so I thought - but they never appeared, despite being fine when previewed. Anyway, in the interim both my landline and internet (which comes down it) went intermittent and then non existent. Badgering my provider has resulted in free 'phone calls but thus far frustratingly slow internet. I'm told it may take up to a fortnight to get up to speed so I'll not try to post properly until then.

Progress has been made!

Regards, Mick
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Old 2nd August 2022, 08:57
Ozzie Dave Ozzie Dave is offline
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Many thanks Mick, I also built a Phaeton(s3) many moons ago, so many memories coming back, I remember looking front on and seeing the front wheels a 2 different cambers, on checking there was almost an inch difference from one top mounting to the other, a chassis rail that had to be cut and moved as the propshaft 'ran through' and seat floorpans and a pedalbox bulkhead that had to be reinforced to stop them buckling and cracking- But it was a great fun car and eventually moved to Germany.
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  #20  
Old 6th August 2022, 17:04
Mick O'Malley Mick O'Malley is offline
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Default On the level - just!

Four weeks ago - pre internet disaster - I took peterux's advice and invested in an engine leveller, my umpteenth purchase from Machine Mart. Its first job was to hold up the engine/box combo for separation. I believe the gearbox is shared with other heftier Rootes models so, despite having an alloy casing, the leveller was at one extreme before balance was achieved. I had to put a ratchet strap around it from a roof beam for support but my struggles were successful - eventually.



I then craned the engine up to yet another MM purchase, bolted it to same, folded the crane, put the 'box in the shed and turned back to the frame.



That was it for that now far off day.

Regards, Mick
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