Madabout Kitcars Forum

Madabout Kitcars Forum (
-   Sammio Builds and discussions (
-   -   Another Cordite Is Born ... (

donnysoutherner 4th November 2012 09:44

Hi Paul, I'm hopefully going to post for the first time in ages about my own build today. I note your difficulties in getting the body to fit over the frame. Might not help but my body does cover the frame by some margin. if you want to have a chat and see if i can help then give me a PM and I'll send a phone number over. Simon.

garyh 4th November 2012 11:29

With all the work we are prepared to do on these bodies, why not just cut the lower side section like T suggested? It's winter now, no need rush.

Paul L 4th November 2012 18:20

Cordite Body Fitting - Some more thoughts...
First of all thanks for the replies gentlemen and I will start by addressing them.

Mr T - If I can't lower the body I was thinking of something along the lines of what you did here...

In this case you effectively raised the height of your body with filler to get it to the level you wanted.
I would need to do the same in reverse (if that make sense) to make the body lower & cover the frame.

Alpha - Baz, I am pretty sure by the time I have finished there will be no doubt this is hand made!

DonnySoutherner - Thanks for the offer Simon, I will definitely get in touch if I get stuck.
Looking at this photo of your body, if the bottom right bolt is through the frame then your body is much lower than mine.

GaryH - I haven't ruled out re-shaping the lower edge, I just want to explore alternatives first.

That is the thing I like about this forum, it is great to get feedback & other ideas / suggestions.

I also had another look at Andy's demonstrator thread & now I can see this photo with fresh eyes.

It is now clear that he took a big chunk of fibre glass out above the front mounting point.
( Where I simply cut a notch out to drop the body shell either side of it. )

Also the bottom right hand side of the body work is no where need the frame in this photo.
I have asked the question, but I don't know if this has been cut as well.

A Car For All Seasons:
I'm afraid that I couldn't get a photo that did justice to just how hard it was raining today. :rolleyes:

Well the rain eventually stopped and I was able to get my first real look at my doors in place.
The good news is that I think I will be able to get the outside skin of the door to fit the "hole".
Although it will require some trimming and filling to get gaps to a MikMiglia standard.

The passenger side is the closest 'out of the box':

And this is the driver's side:

But the area I am more concerned about is how the inside of the doors look.
This is the front edge of the driver's side...

And the passenger side...

Lancelot Link's Stoneleigh demonstrator is the only Cordite I've seen with doors fitted.
Based on this photo, it is clear that the closed passenger door is certainly not flush fitting.

And now the thread AndyP57 posted about door fitting makes more sense (Here).

Another thing I have noticed on other Cordite build threads in the inner door lip on the body shell.
I have quite a deep lip all the way round, similar to DonnySoutherner's:

However, it seems that AndyP57 doesn't have a lip at all on his body shell.

The lip will stay for now until I see more doors fitted.

But the real reason to start my 'mock up' of the doors was to establish how the hinges would work.
Again this is the Stoneleigh demonstrator...

I have already bought the same hinges for my own car, so I taped then in place in a similar position.

This allowed me to see what the hinges would be attached to.
The hinges have two mounting points for both the body & door.

It was only after I started writing this that I realised I needed another door photo.
So here is one of the first doors under construction to show the 'thin' & 'thick' sections.

Now when I post the photo I did take, I hope the words make sense.

One of the door hinge bolts will go through the outer skin edge.
The second will go through the inside of the deeper inner door section.
( You can see the edges of this marked out by the yellow release wax. )

This gives me a couple of things to think about...

Firstly, I will need to reinforce the bolt holes in both the doors & body work.
As I do not want the stress of supporting the doors in action to crack the fibreglass.

The second is will I need to be able to access the hinge bolts when fitted?
As the original plan was to box in the cockpit interior with plywood.

Hmm, more proverbial beard scratching required here I think.
But that is the whole reason for doing this work at this stage, so it is all good.

Anyway, got to go, so I'll end here, cheers, Paul. :)

Mister Towed 4th November 2012 18:33

Phew, having read all that I'm so glad I went doorless.

Once you've got them fitted and working I wouldn't waste much effort making them look neat inside. Any decent trimmer should be able to make trim panels that'll hide all the rough edges. Mine were 50 each in black leather and will hide a multitude of sins -

One thing to watch when fitting the hinges will be that, as the doors are curved, not flat, you could end up with a geometric 'lock' if you put the hinges too far apart. Anyway, good luck getting them to work. :pray:

Paul L 6th November 2012 17:46

Doors - Alternative Solution:
Mister Towed - Your reply reminded me to mention my thoughts on an extreme door solution...
Maybe the radical alternative to fitting working doors is to simply bond them into the closed position!

You could then fill the joins in to be left with a smooth, door less, Spyder type body.
Or you could create door "gaps", fit the external hinges & effectively have fake doors that didn't open.

However, either of these options would mean losing the side screens as they need functioning doors.
Thankfully I don't need to make a final decision just yet, but I will keep all of these options in mind.

Steering Column Clearance:
I posted these photos on DonnySoutherner's build thread due to his steering column issue.
It seems that AndyP57's frame work has a "kink" in it to accommodate the column (Top Photo).
Whereas, Simon & myself both have a "straight down" box section piece in our frames (Bottom Photo).

So we both will need to cut out the existing section of frame & replace it with a longer "kinked" section.
The good news is that Simon has given me a great 'heads up' on a problem I was not even aware of.
As this would be much harder to fix if I had already bonded the frame and body together.
It also reassures me that taking extra time to mock things up will save me time & grief in the long run.

The other thing that this has done, is make me realise that I will have to do the following...

Learning to Weld:
I have been slowly building up a list of jobs that will require welding at some point:
- Modify frame to accommodate steering column (see above).
- Modify frame to provide clearance for bottom stroke of cluthc & brake pedals.
- Modify frame to accommodate my twin pipe brake master cylinder (TBC).
- Attach two new seat belt mounting points to the frame (I ordered 4, but only 2 were done).
- Make & fit a bracket to support my twin rear silencers (Either to frame, body, or between the two).
- Fix pivot bolt hole bracket to hand brake mounting panel (After I managed to knock it off :icon_sad:).
- Attach two bonnet hinge mounting brackets to the chassis.
It also looks like DonnySoutherner lowered his radiator to fit the bonnet, so may be more work there.

So it was time to "Phone A Friend" and ask my best mate if he could teach me the dark art of welding.
Thankfully, he is confident he can show me what to do and that, with practise, I would be OK (ish).
His welding gear may need a few spares (wire coil, etc.), but that is a small price to pay to borrow it.

I take comfort from the fact other builders have started welding from scratch (e.g. Mr T).
So as soon as we can find a suitable time, I will start my welding apprenticeship. :cool:

Headlight Template - Take 2:
This is another one of those small activities that thankfully the weather can not get in the way of.
Previously I had prepared a 'Blue Peter' cardboard template as a guide to cutting holes out of the bonnet.
I had based this on the original headlight's rubber gasket, but there was a small flaw in this approach...

What I had forgotten was that this gasket pushes over the outer headlight shell to form a seal.
Although based on the wholesale rust I found on my inner & outer shells, not a very good one! :rolleyes:
This means that I would not have a big enough hole in the bonnet for the headlight shell to fit in.

So another cereal box was sacrificed to the Cordite building altar & this new template will do the job.

As I've said before, every little job done, no matter how small, is still another job done.

Next Steps:
Missed a courier delivery today, which I hope is my lowered floor pans. :pray:

I'll keep you posted, Paul. :)

Paul L 10th November 2012 08:43

Missing Parts:
Thankfully I re-read the 'missed delivery' note as, unlike most places, they are closed at the weekend.
So collected my parcel after work on Friday which meant spending a long time stuck in traffic. :rolleyes:

A big thank you to AndyP57 for arranging this delivery before going on his holiday. :cool:

And this was what was inside...

I had a bit of a panic as the wide rims made the lowered section look very narrow.
This made me think that my seats wouldn't fit, which didn't really bear thinking about.
So despite the rain, it was a quick dash to the bottom of the garden to pull out a seat, and...


OK, I might have a small issue with the seat rail handle, but I'll worry about that later.
I will wait for the rain to stop before I try to test fit the floors in the car, so maybe tomorrow.

I guess after waiting for over 4 months to get them, waiting another day wont hurt! :icon_wink:
But jokes aside, these are a great morale boost, when the delays were starting to get me down a bit.
( Although I'm still waiting for my grill and a few other small bits. )

Which leads me to the other thing that was putting doubt into my mind about the way forward...

Lead me not into the path of temptation...
Many of you have already seen the Tribute Automotive 'A352' on the forum 'Next Door'. (Thread Here).
I know Chris & Dan are professional car builders, but this looks like a very straight forward kit to me.

As my build has progressed I can now really appreciate the genius of the cut down donor approach.
I really thought the Cordite's frame would be more straight forward that cutting the bulk head for a Spyder kit. :rolleyes:
Whilst I am still convinced this will be the case when Andy re-lauches the Cordite kit next year.
For me there is a lot of work just to get simple things like my steering & pedals to work properly. :icon_sad:
Which together with the missing parts problems really made me question what I am trying to achieve.

I'm happy to admit that I underestimated all of the following:
- The work involved in building the car
- The amount of free time I would have to do it
- The logistical problems of trying to work outside

But when I was asked by one of my friends why I didn't just buy a finished car, the answer was simple...
Because I want to actually build the car myself and the building part is the reason to have the car.

I actually think the A352 is more suited to my limited skills and would be a much quicker build for me.
But the Cordite gives me a chance to expand my skills to include welding & working with fibreglass.
So whilst it will take me much longer to finish my Cordite, the plan is to keep building until I do!

To paint, or not to paint...
My original plan was always to try and get the car on the road without a professional standard paint job.
As I'd hoped my light blue gel coat would at least give my car some colour until it was painted.

But it looks like there will be a lot of body filler around the doors + where the bulkhead & bonnet meet.
And depending on my final brake master cylinder solution, filler may be required to tidy this area too.
So I plan to at least put some primer over the top of these areas before I take the car for its MOT.

There is also the small technical hitch that the paint I used on the headlight rims was a different blue. :rolleyes:
I know AndyP57 completed his 'low tech' paint job on the Cordite demonstrator with 4 spray cans.
So I am tempted to do something similar as a quick fix, as it is not exactly a huge financial commitment.
With luck, an unfinished / being repaired / restores look might be in keeping with my Spartan interior finish.

My thoughts on paint were prompted by our recent family half term trip to York where we saw this...

A really lovely blue in the daylight and a seriously impressive engine. :cool:
I also get the distinct impression that those rivets are not stuck on to look the part. :icon_wink:

Next Steps:
Catch up on some domestic chores today, watch "Skyfall" tonight & work on the car tomorrow.

Cheers, Paul. :)

Mister Towed 10th November 2012 09:39

Don't lose heart Paul. I know what you mean about the A352, it looks like a very straightforward build. Looks can be deceptive though - with a ready to roll chassis, a fully equipped engineering workshop, the necessary mechanical experience and a few people to help, by going at it full-time a Spyder can be built in about a month. Just take a look at Patoune's timeline on this thread - body collected 2nd February 2011, car finished 13th March 2011.

For the rest of us though, starting witha rotten donor and tinkering away in a shed in our precious spare time with a few basic hand tools, picking up the skills as we go along, one to two years is a more realistic timescale. As I've posted elsewhere on this forum though, that's the satisfying thing, after spending almost two years putting imagination and effort into building my car with my own hands I'll be able to step back and say with real pride I built that.

And for me that's the key difference between what we're doing and the more mainstream (read expensive) kit-cars, you don't just assemble a Sammio, you have to actually build it.

Anyway, enjoy Skyfall tonight, although I've heard Adele sing the theme song and I'm sure it's called Skyfow -

Let the sky fow
When it crumbow
We will stand tow
Or face it all togever...

froggyman 10th November 2012 12:14

I think you have to put it all into perspective and appreciate what your doing with the experience and facilities you have available. It will take time but as Towed has said it will be your creation and one you will be proud of. Your car with its fibreglass bulkhead and floors will stand the test of time. I know you had a good donor shell which you could have utilized, but those that don't will have to weld them up before the build and possibly more in the distant future so the level work can be there which ever way you choose.
Keep up the good work and updates.

seanick 11th November 2012 09:28

Hey Paul, your doing a great job, just keep going.
Like any project that has to be fitted in between all the usual life challenges its always a challenge.
The way I see it is well I will either sit on the sofa this eve and be numbed by the x factor or get out there and get a bit done.
I like Earnest Shackleton's family motto...'By Edurance we conquer' or is that conker?
Anyway building a car hardly compares to his achivements, but it keeps me going.
And with regard to the cost, some people drink and smoke there way through 5k a year, and have nothing to show for it!
It must be frustrating no having a garage though. Could you use a couple of pop up shelters or maybe rent a local lock up for these dark evenings?

Paul L 11th November 2012 15:01



Mister Towed, Froggyman & SeaNick - Thanks for the encouragement.
I will try to keep the faith & simply accept that things take much longer than I expect/hope.
I am also sure that the more effort I have to put it, the more pride there will be at the end.

I think the fact that I am still at a "tinkering" stage at the moment doesn't help much either.
But once I start connecting things permanently I will feel real progress is being made.
And in the great scheme of things, this is only a car building project, no one has died.

Obviously I didn't want to be working on the car during the 2 minutes silence.
But I did get a few hours after that to get a bit more done...

Fuel & Brake Hard Lines:
I need to order some new clips to re-attach these, but for now I have just unclipped them.
This means they will not be in the way of the Cordite frame or the floor pans.

Floor Pans
With my new positive philosophy in place, I think I took the initial fitting quite well. :icon_wink:

So it was time to attack the box they came in with my Stanley knife and make a template.
( I kept the "hole" for the lowered part of the pans so I could position it within the frame. )

I also put one of my seats roughly in place to highlight the impact of its reclining angle.

This means the lowered floor section needs to be in quite a forward position.

Once this was in place I could measure the relative locations of the framework.
I then cut sections out of the outer section of card to avoid the frame, until it fitted.

This gives me a guide to cutting the floor pan which now looks like this.

Before I started cutting the driver's side floor, I thought I'd practise on the passenger side.
My first thoughts were to simply flip the template over to the other side, but no.
The frame work spaced differently on either side which means the "hole" doesn't line up.

The gap in the driver's side frame is 13 cm, but it is 17 cm on the passenger side.

So I will need to cut another template for the passenger side.
At this point I had to stop for lunch with my family, so I will go back out soon.

The other things to note is the edges of the floor pans are very "wavy" in places.
If this causes a problem when fitting I will cut these sections out and replace them.

The other thing that occurred to me was to check AndyP57's floors.

He certainly has straighter cuts than I do (I thought I needed the curves to help fitting).
But I seem to have an extra bracket on the bottom of my frame that Andy doesn't.
( Initially I thought this was the seat belt bracket, but it isn't, I just need to take a photo of it. )
So if this bracket is not required I will cut if off and that might make fitting the floors easier.

Which means I will wait a bit longer before taking an angle grinder & hack saw to my floors.
This is definitely a job where you want to measure twice and cut once!

Well my wife & I took advantage of a baby sitter to go to the cinema last night.
I really enjoyed the film and it was good to see the return of the ultimate Bond car...

Right I'm off out again to do a little more before it gets dark.

Cheers, Paul. :)

SeaNick I can't get a lock up as I promised to be "around" when working on the car.
It wouldn't be fair at home if I had to go somewhere else to do the work & I can live with that.
Some form of pop up cover in the front drive may be an option a bit later in the build.

davecymru 11th November 2012 15:18


Originally Posted by Paul L (Post 37354)

I then cut sections out of the outer section of card to avoid the frame, until it fitted.

Looking good, but i think you may need a bit of reinforcement on that before you bolt the seat in? ;)

garyh 11th November 2012 15:32

I think you're steaming along, at least it looks like a Cordite...

Mister Towed 11th November 2012 16:20

A little progress like that every few days and you'll be surprised how quickly you have something that looks like a car on your hands. Keep up the good work, it's nice to see someone else manning up to the same challenges as I've had, with a few more to boot, or doors to be more specific :)

Paul L 11th November 2012 17:10

Floor Pans - Final Photo
This is the bracket I have on either side of my frame and it appears Andy doesn't...

It can't be to bolt the body work on, as the bolt would be visible on the outside of the car.
So unless someone knows better, I will simply remove it completely.
This should make it easier to position the floors in around the frame work.

Rear Lighting Layout:
This is a rough guide to how things should line up at the back of the car.
( I will get a better horizontal alignment & even spacing between lights before drilling. )

But the main reason for looking at this now is to check the vertical alignment.
The body work is actually pretty flat at this point, so there isn't much work to do.
( Sorry about the blurry photo. )

I expect to file a little off the body behind the middle of the lights.
Then build up with filler a little bit behind the top and bottom edges of the lights.
I will also need to build up the area behind the number plate, but again not by much.

I need to buy fixings for the lights and wanted to check if the body needed reinforcing.
My plan is to list as much work required as possible before I remove the body & frame.
That way I can make adjustments before everything is bonded onto place & harder to get at.

Wrap Around Dash:
My final mock up work for the day was to stick the dash in place with some tape.

I wanted to check clearance issues, so got my speedo back out of the box...

This would need approx. 15 cm of space to allow for wires, etc.
And this would be in a 'behind the dash' depth of around 24 cm.
This in turn means there is room for the brake master cylinder to push back into this dash space.
Although I still need to work out the impact on the bulk head / bonnet of doing this before I commit to it.

There seems plenty of space on the front of the dash for the speedo too.
Although I'd want to see the steering column in place before working out my dash layout.

There may be a bit of work required to blend in the edges of the dash with the bodywork. :rolleyes:

But once again I will have a read of Mr T's build where he blended his dash in.

Seat Belt Bolt Brackets:
I've bought 2 x 2 brackets in two different sizes for the lower belt mounting points.

When I eventually get the floors in, this will allow me to see where the seats end up.
This in turn will allow me to test fit the seat belts I have and work things out from there.
Again, I will make adjustments to the frame when it removed from the chassis.

OK, that's all for now, cheers, Paul. :)

DaveCymru - But once I've zipped tied the cardboard in place I will be OK, won't I?
GaryH - Cheers.
Mr T: - Thanks, I think seeing the floors & seats in place will be a big step forward.

davecymru 11th November 2012 17:14

That bracket is the lower seatbelt mounting point i think.

Paul L 11th November 2012 21:00


Originally Posted by davecymru (Post 37361)
That bracket is the lower seatbelt mounting point i think.

Thanks Dave.

In which case I will need to get a nut welded on to the outside face.

As this is what has been done on the upper mounting points.

Which is why I thought this was just some random bracket. :rolleyes:

Cheers, Paul. :)

peterux 12th November 2012 08:57


Originally Posted by davecymru (Post 37361)
That bracket is the lower seatbelt mounting point i think.

Hi Dave,

do you think that bracket is big enough to be a seat belt mounting point?
It also seems to be on the wrong side of the chassis rail? :noidea:

Also Paul,
it may be a trick of your photo, but it looks like the weld of the upright member next to that little bracket is cracked?
It might be worth getting a triangular plate welded across that corner to strengthen it.

Maybe Gary Janes should comment, as the designer of these frames?


(P.S. I have no axe to grind, but I am interested in your personal safety, etc.)

davecymru 12th November 2012 09:13

No worries Peter, good constructive discussion is always worth while and you've got me thinking now... :)

My suggestion was based on the fact that while the frames are obviously different in order to cater for the doors, it does seem to be in roughly the same position as i put my lower belt mounting points (see below)

You can also see on my frame that inside the top rear corners of my frame i had similar brackets that i didn't find out until i'd nearly finished mine were top belt mounting points.

Paul L 12th November 2012 18:46

Peter & Dave - Thanks for the feedback, it all helps.

I don't think the frame is cracked, but I will double check.

I need to get my floors sorted out to test fit my seats & seat belt locations.

I have bought new mounting points (see one of my posts above) which I can use if needed.

I will certainly not be rushing this part of the build.

Cheers, Paul. :)

seanick 12th November 2012 19:15

SeaNick I can't get a lock up as I promised to be "around" when working on the car.
It wouldn't be fair at home if I had to go somewhere else to do the work & I can live with that.
Some form of pop up cover in the front drive may be an option a bit later in the build.[/QUOTE]

It is tricky, I think we have a young family of similar age. Finding time for the project and not missing out on time with the kids is difficult. Davecymru seemed to manage it well! As my car is not at home the only way I can, fit mine in is to work on it evenings, just afterthe kids have gone to bed, like now! (Just waiting for some filler to go off as I type this).

I wonder how many other builders are juggling families too, apart from Gary J?

oxford1360 12th November 2012 19:27

Yup, kids and a new puppy. The children are quite useful helpers but they are 13 and 15 rather than "little". My daughter helped me to lift a short engine into the boot and was very proud. The workshop is in the woods, but I usually get one day a week when they are at school and occasionally pop down there when they are at cadets or doing sport or whatever it is they do. The dog on the other hand has slowed things of late. I convince my wife that it is important for them to see that I have a passion.........yeah, yeah.

Mister Towed 12th November 2012 19:31

I have an eleven year old son and a very demanding wife myself. I had hoped No.1 son would be able to help me with the build but he's still a bit young. Wife's been very tolerant these last eighteen months, but she really wants me to finish it now. :icon_neutral:

Current plan is to buy a shabby classic (mini, moggie or herald) in a couple of years, restore it with his help as a way of passing on some of the engineering skills and present it to him as his first car on his seventeenth birthday. My thinking is that if he's worked hard to rebuild the thing he won't drive it like he stole it. Should be a lot cheaper on the insurance and look pretty cool too. Just don't tell his mum...

seanick 12th November 2012 19:39

Mine are 3 and 5, so they are in bed by 7.30.
I guess we all have
Very lovely and understanding wives/partners, and we are very very lucky!

Mister Towed 12th November 2012 19:43


Originally Posted by seanick (Post 37432)
Mine are 3 and 5, so they are in bed by 7.30.
I guess we all have
Very lovely and understanding wives/partners, and we are very very lucky!


seanick 12th November 2012 19:59

Well I dont know where you found a font that big!

Paul L 13th November 2012 19:21

Family Time:
Cheers SeaNick, Oxford1360 & Mr T.
Clearly trying to build a car & maintain a family life is a juggling act that a few of us are attempting. :juggle:
So I'm prepared to take longer to finish the build rather than spend too much time away from my family.

My daughters are 12 & 10 and have helped with frame painting, cleaning parts for Ebay & other odd jobs.
It is nice they show an interest & that they will be able to say they helped when the car is finally finished. :cool:

I've also thought about doing a project with them as a first car, but would definitely want a garage for that!
Either way, I'd like them to have a basic understanding of how a car works, be able to change a wheel, etc.

Lowered Floor Pans - More Thoughts...
I think I'm beginning to have nightmares about getting these floors to fit in the right place. :rolleyes:

The back of my seats already have a fixed reclined angle built into them when the seat base is horizontal.
But the seat base will sit in the reclined angle built into the lowered floor pans, effectively tipped backwards.
So now, when the back of the seat hits the rear of the cockpit, the front of the seat will be further forward.

See this rough (and I mean very rough) sketch...

Clearly there is a limit to how far forward the "drop" in the floor can go before it hits the frame work.
Also, as the floor edges need to be trimmed to fit around the frame, I can't really start adjusting in situ.

So I need to get my tape measure out again and really get my head around the space I have to play with.

Until then, take care, Paul. :)

Mister Towed 13th November 2012 19:37

You're absolutely right about the seat having to move forward when you fit sloping lowered floors. It's not a problem though, if you look at mine the front edges are near enough in line with the back edges of the front floorpans -

I find that to be a very comfortable driving position and keeps my swede out of the slipstream. As an alternative, if you lower the floors at the front as well, then the seats will be more upright so you would be able to fit them a bit further back. The only downside there is that it would make it much harder to fit runners. No problem if you're happy with a fixed seating position, not so good if you want someone much shorter to drive it.

Paul L 13th November 2012 20:59

Another first class reply Mr T. :cool:

I'll take a print of your photo with me when I am trying to figure this out.

As I'd like to keep working runners if I could. :pray:

Cheers, Paul. :)

Paul L 18th November 2012 18:10

Another Cordite Is Born ...

Only got a few hours in today, just as the sun was setting so I finished in the dark.

Lowered Floor Pan - Passenger Side:
I figured it was better to start with the passenger side and see what I was up against.
But before I tried to fit the lowered floor pan I simply lay a section on plywood on the frame.
This came me a better idea of how high the seat would be with a flat floor.

Obviously I could make the floor flush with the frame, but it would need to go lower still.
As there was quite a bit of seat sticking over the top of the body work.

So I pressed ahead with cutting out a few sections to get around the frame.
However, it was proving difficult to get the rear and outside edges to slot into place.

So I started to cut a series of "steps" out of the sides to give me the "wiggle" room I needed.
I took the time consuming approach of taking little bits off at a time & seeing what fouled next.
In the end this involved quite a lot of cutting with my jigsaw.

But thankfully it finally went in...

This position has the start of the lowered floor section butting up to the front frame.
So this is a far forward as the floor will go and the seat looks like this in place...

The top of the seat is definitely in a better position height wise...

But the outside top corner is fouling the edge of the body work a little.
Also it seems the seat runners can't work as there is no room for the handle to move. :icon_sad:
Not such a problem on the passenger side, but may be an issue on the drivers side.

I'll have another look at what is going on in daylight before tackling the other side.
As I think I could have trimmed more off the rear of the floor before fitting it.
Which in turn would have made it easier to slot into place.

Until next time, take care, Paul. :)

davecymru 18th November 2012 18:27

Good positioning height wise! Although you now know why i squared off the corners of my cockpit! :)

Paul L 22nd November 2012 20:23

Lowered Floor Pans - More Thoughts & Photos...
Finally got a chance to take a few more photos of the passenger floor in place.
Although you'll have to excuse the photos as taking them at night is hardly ideal. :rolleyes:

The space available inside the frame work means there is a limit to where the lowered section will fit.
I have started with the front edge of the lowered section at the front edge of the frame work.

So clearly the floor can not go much further forward than this, but it could be moved backwards.
However, unless I get different seats, moving the floor backwards wouldn't help me much.
I'd also want to leave enough space for access to the radius arm mounting bracket.

Based on my initial seat fitting test, I'd say the lowered section could do with moving inwards a bit.
As this would allow the top, outside edge of the seat to clear the cockpit bodywork.
Towards the front of the floor, there looks like there is room to move inwards.

But at the rear of the floor, the curve of the frame will stop the floor moving any further inwards. :icon_sad:

The other thing that occurs to me is that if the seat rails will not work, I'll have to remove them.
As I will not be able to bolt them in place if I can't get the seats out of the way of the mounting points.
This will actually lower the seat by the height of the rails, as it would be bolted directly to the floor.
This in turn would mean the seat would probably clear the bodywork even if it stayed where it was.

So I should be able to get both the passenger side floor & seat fitted in a way that works well. :cool:
But before I confirm that, I need to test fit my seat belts to ensure they work around the seat position.

My main concern is the floor for the driver's side, as I would like the seat to remain adjustable.
I think it is the small vertical "lip" where the floor starts to lower that is causing the problem.
My initial thoughts are to remove this lip & extend the slope to meet the horizontal floor level.
This should provide a straight run for the seat adjustment handle and the runners themselves to work.

I just need to check how much extra space extending the slope in this way would take up.
As the start of this extended slope would be the first part of the floor to hit the front frame rail.
So the rear of the existing slope would effectively be pushed back towards the rear cockpit.

See another of my "not so technical" drawings...

So clearly a bit of thinking still required, as I do want to get the driver's side right.

Welding Lessons:
Met my mate for a beer last night and had a brief chat about when he would be free to teach me to weld.
He has some time off work over Christmas / New Years, so it looks like we will try to get together then. :)

In the mean time I will need to order some of the same box section tubing used in the Cordite frame.
Some of this will be incorporated into the existing frame and some will be to practise my welding on.
My mate will order all the parts he needs to bring his welding gar back to working order & I'll refund him.
He also has small sections of "left over" metal which might be handy for the odd bracket, or bracing.

I'm really looking forward to this, as I think it will remove some of my fears about work I know needs doing.
It will also mark the step up from assembling my kit, to building my car, something Mr T has mentioned.
Whilst I never intended to touch my chassis, I am kind of jealous of those builders who have restored theirs. :cool:

Shopping Update:
I decided to replace the rubber seals from my donor I had for my headlight shells as they had seen better days.
Given the time I spend restoring all the damage done by water getting past them in the past, it made sense.
Got a new pair from Ebay with outstanding service, ordered them one afternoon & they arrived the next day.

Until next time, take care, Paul. :)

DaveCymru - Cheers, I'll re-read your build thread to see how you squared the corners.
It's funny how certain things make more sense when you reach the same part of your own build.

Paul L 25th November 2012 18:07

Some of the last two weekends has been taking up with shopping not involving car parts as...

Christmas is coming...
We traditionally host the family Christmas day meal at our house & this will be for at least 10 this year.
Obviously there is quite a bit of preparation involved with this and the dining room has to look the part.
So my recent bad habit of leaving car parts, tools, etc. in there will have to stop for the festive period. :rolleyes:

But before I could clear the dining room, I had to tackle the summer house which was even worse...

There was also car stuff in the utility room (see story before).

So a few hours of tidying up left the dining & utility rooms clear & the summer house looking like this...

Engine Re-Start:
I was hoping to re-connect a few parts so I could attempt to re-start the engine today.
However I lost some time to the tidy up & then I had to log in remotely & do some work! :icon_sad:
Unfortunately, the run up to Christmas is my busiest time in the office too.

Thankfully I was able to "tidy up" my twin silencers by temporarily pushing them back into place.
Which was one of the jobs I needed to do before the engine re-start anyway.
( Working out how to mount these permanently is on my beard scratching list. )

I must say the length of pipe sticking out at the back is growing on me.
So I might just stick to KISS principles and not shorten the exhaust at all.

Domestic Appliances Threaten Build... :rolleyes:
As if I didn't have enough problems with the weather, our white goods are out to get me too!

Last weekend it was the washing machine which wasn't draining after a wash cycle.
After bailing out the water in the drum, I found the filter was seriously blocked.
It needed to be unclogged in two places, but the final bit sent water flooding everywhere. :icon_evil:

Unfortunately, all my exterior plywood was temporarily stacked in the utility room.
So in the best heroic builder tradition I put myself between the water and the wood.
By the time my wife arrived with some more newspaper & towels my clothes were soaked...
...but the wood was dry. :cool:

Then today, just after I'd moved all the plywood down to the summer house, the drier went.
Another blockage leading to more water everywhere and this time some skin off my finger too.
Still there are some brownie points in the bag for keep the washing machine & drier in use. :)

Until next time, take care, Paul. :)

Mister Towed 26th November 2012 07:53

Work and domestic commitments are all part of the trials and tribulations of Sammio ownership, welcome to the club. :ballchain:

As for the exhaust mounting issue, I welded a length of 1" box section between the boot outriggers and bolted a short rubber strap hanger to it. I don't appear to have taken any photos of the finished version, but here's the early mock up using an old expanding curtain rail rod I had laying around in the garage -

Oh, and it didn't affect the rebody registration process as the reg's allow for brackets etc to be added (and the nice chap at Peterborough didn't actually look under the back end).

Good luck getting your pipes where you want them :)

AndyP57 26th November 2012 07:56

Trouble with the Cordite is that the Spitfire doesn't have rear outriggers so there's nothing to hang the bar on (I've done similar to my Spyder). I'm fairly close to this problem myself so when I figure a solution I'll be sure to post photos.

Paul L 26th November 2012 18:40

Mister Towed & Andy - Thanks for the replies.

As Andy said there is currently thin air where the Heralds have outriggers.

This is the best photo I have to hand...

You can just see the string holding the exhaust pipes in place (temporarily :rolleyes:).

I've pushed the silencers over those pipes and the mounting brackets are just inside the rear of the body shell.
( There were originally bolted into the Spitfire's boot floor. )

So I'd be interested to see how you have over come this Andy.

Cheers, Paul. :)

Mister Towed 27th November 2012 08:52

Do the Herald boot outriggers fit the Spitfire chassis?

The back end looks pretty much the same to me apart from the outriggers - a bit like the difference between a tailed cat and a Manx.

They're under 25 each from Canley Classics -

50 for an exhaust hanger is a bit steep though, so I'd be inclined to weld some lengths of 1" box section steel in their place with a cross bar to hang the exhaust from. You might even get away with a single length of box section welded on pointing straight backwards above the exhaust.

Good luck finding a solution. :biggrin:

Mister Towed 27th November 2012 08:59

Just noticed this diagram of the Spitfire 1500 chassis on one of Paul L's posts. Hope it copies across...

Are they stubby boot outriggers on the back? I don't seem to be able to find them on Canley's web site though.

MoriniMan 27th November 2012 12:42


Originally Posted by Mister Towed (Post 37812)
Are they stubby boot outriggers on the back? I don't seem to be able to find them on Canley's web site though.

Only fitted for later North American cars I think.

Paul L 27th November 2012 18:10

Oops, looks like I took a photo of the wrong page of the Spitfire manual. :rolleyes:

Mind you, I did the same thing when I initially photo copied the wrong wiring diagram. :mmph:

I was also considering welding on some box section support (following my lessons at Christmas).

Another solution was taken by DonnySoutherner who re-used a section of bodywork.
The silencers would then simply bolt back in their original position.
(With the added benefit of inner rear arches too.)

So, lots to think about, cheers, Paul. :)

Paul L 1st December 2012 12:04

Frosty The Sammio...

Well I guess it makes a change to remove the ice from the cover instead of the water. :rolleyes:

"Cold in the garage my ar$e." :icon_wink:

Christmas Opening Hours:
I've spent the morning shopping for Christmas pressies & stocking up for our Christmas day meal.
So it is clear that I am going to have even less time available than usual over the next few weeks.

But Christmas is one of those times where the family comes first and car building comes second.
I have no problem with that at all and will lower my car building expectations accordingly.

There is only one job that I would really like to get done before Christmas and that is start the engine.
As it has now been 4 months since I had it running and I had hoped to do this last weekend.
We have a family trip to the cinema this afternoon ("Nativity 2") so this might have to wait until Sunday.

In the mean time, here is something I wrote earlier...

Door Hinges:
Ages ago I posted a question on the "Ask Mike" thread (here) about fitting the door hinges.
But I keep forgetting to go through his very helpful answers here....


Originally Posted by mikmiglia (Post 37247)
... You need to look on the inside of the hinges as they are sided, and top and bottom. As you look the shape of the hinge, they camber from top to bottom. Basically to fit a lightly curved door, I found the flatter area the better. Get yourself a spirit level and mark a straight and level line across the door to a panel. Then work the next hinge position of that, so basically the hinges work together without fighting each other...

The hinges didn't come with any instructions, but after reading the above I had another look.
Sure enough, the insides of the hinges were marked left & right + top & bottom (RHT, RHB, etc.).
I'm pretty sure I would have missed this completely as they all looked the same to me. :rolleyes:

Mike also made another good point about access requirements...


Originally Posted by mikmiglia (Post 37267)
... maybe cut an access hatch, at the end of the day, the car is fibreglass and things can come loose and at least you can re-tighten the bolts if needed...

I was planning to follow the Spyder tradition of using simple plywood panels around the cockpit sides.
I understood that bonding / fibre glassing the panels in place was key to strengthening the whole car.
So clearly making the whole panels removable for access would kind of defeat the object a bit.

However, the hinge bolts will be in awkward to reach places anyway (behind frame & inside door inner skin).
So I may need to put quite sizeable 'removable' sections in the fixed panelling to ensure they can be reached.
You can just about make out the bolts in the doors in this photo.

And this was my earlier mock up of where the hinges would go through my own doors.

One option would be to cut through the inner door skin to leave just the outer skin where the bolts are.
Then build up and box in the rest of the door to make that a single solid item.
See another of my poor sketches below, which would leave the hinge bolts permanently on view.

I also know AndyP57 has been working on fitting the doors to his Cordite Demonstrator.
I look forward to seeing what he has done, but fear he'll have to cut holes in his lovely alloy panels. :icon_sad:

If the worst comes to the worst, I can always go for my drastic, last resort, 'non functioning' doors option.
Thankfully I don't have to make a final decision just yet, so there is more beard scratching time available.

Hopefully I'll be back again tomorrow, cheers, Paul. :)

All times are GMT +0. The time now is 11:48.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.9
Copyright ©2000 - 2021, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Copyright Madabout Kitcars 2014