05 Dec 2007
Powdercoated chassis pics plus another part ordered...

Today the kit is ready, westfield have sent us through 2 pics of the chassis, now powdercoated and ended the email with the words 'see you Saturday,' which is nice to read. The kit is paid for in full already but having specified the Westfield Dry Sump Kit a couple of days ago, we had to contact them to pay for it before we arrived on the Saturday morning.

Matt

Our chassis back from power coating. Another view. Westfield dry sump kit suitable for the Suzuki Hayabusa engine.

05 Dec 2007
Engine Purchased

Over the last few weeks we have been in talks with Malcolm at a company called Yorkshire Engines and we are so so happy with the service he has provided to us. He has given us so much information as to which route to go down and eventually we have purchased an engine from him.

We were unsure as to how new we wanted the engine, obviously common sense would dictate the newer the better but there were a couple of problems with that....We were looking at the brand new 2008 Hayabusa engine, its brand new (obviously), bored out, more power and torque and other advantages too. However, when this idea was brought up with Malcolm he recommended we stick with a 2007 engine, the main reason being as the 2008 engine is new, it is untested in the bikes, let alone in the Westfields. Nobody knows enough about the engine, it might not even fit into the Westfield, so the best bet was to go for a 2007 engine which a number of other owners have gone for and had successful results.

We then thought about a brand new engine, but talking to another Megabusa owner (see their site at www.megabusa.co.uk) he recommended getting one that has some miles on it already, so that we do not have to run the engine in when the car is fully built.

With this information on board, we got back in contact with Malcolm at Yorkshire Engines and have purchased our engine. It is virtually brand new, a 2007 Suzuki Hayabusa Engine with only 830 miles since new. The best of both worlds, and we have been informed it will be with us next Wednesday. Top service from Malcolm and he is highly recommended by us.

Anyway, here are the basic stats of the engine:

2007 Suzuki Hayabusa Engine, 1299cc, 178bhp, 102lb/ft, 11,000 rpm redline, 6 speed gearbox.

if you want the detailed spec, then you can look here:

http://www.suzuki-bikes.com/2007-Hayabusa-1300.php

 

Matt


05 Dec 2007
Garage Clearout

With collection day on the 8th we thought it was about time to give the garage a quick clearout as we were not quite sure just how much room there would be around the chassis to work. We wanted to get rid of some junk, get the dust and leaves out and give the floor a quick wash. First thing was first, we got the cars out and moved everything from 'our' (formerly my dad's) side of the garage to the other.

Then we gave our side a quick dry sweep and then began to put water and washing up liquid down to just clean the floor a little.

Then we moved everything out of the otherside to outside of the garage completely and repeated the same process...

Let it dry briefly and then put what we wanted back into the garage, but moved a few bits around to leave the finished product as:

Much more space.....all ready for Saturday now!

Laurence

Cleared one side of the garage to do a dry sweep to get dust and dirt out. Added a bit of water to remove some of the dirt.
Washing up liquid and more water. Began clearing the other side of the garage for a dry sweep of that whilst the other side dried. Letting it dry.
Put everything back in, masses of more space than before. Toolbox over our side now. All done, much cleaner now. Far from spotless as expected, but a vast improvement.  

08 Dec 2007
Collection Day

Its arrived, our first day of Westfield ownership, and with a 160 mile trip each way ahead of us we are up at 6, aiming to leave for 6:30. By the time we set off it is just before 7 which isn't bad, with westfield opening at 9 we shouldn't be too far off of that. The weather was great locally but as soon as we got on the motorway heading North, cloud gathered and the rain started to fall pretty hard, and there were even a couple of crashes right infront of us on the way. The wind also blowed the light rear of the Luton Van around a fair bit too....not the greatest we have ever felt in a vehicle but it was the only way to get the car back to home.

Anyway, we made good time and arrived at Westfield around about 9.30 a.m, and we popped in to say hello and have a quick nose about. Looking through to the warehouse we spot a bright green shell with a huge trolley of parts under it...."That must be ours!" "Yep!" Steve replied. The colur looked so impressive under the lights in the factory.

Laurence backed the van into the warehouse and the staff were not wasting any time in loading up. As things were loaded onto the van we were just briefly taken through everything that was in each box, it is fascinating looking at everything. A few bits were missing, such as reverse box, LSD and then much more minor parts, but nothing that would hold the build up. Two of the parts missing were black harnesses and the dash and dials. They were out of stock of black harnesses, but did have red and blue, so we opted for red as it would stand out against the black seats, unlike the black harnesses. Going for lime green bodywork, we obviously were not too worried about parts of the car standing out. Another thing missing was the dials, but this didn't bother us, asking about the stack dials which most cars in the factory seemed to have, they reminded us of the Digi Dash which is only just out (we were planning on upgrading to this at a later date anyway) but as we didn't have our dials we brought it there and then...it looks fantastic and comes with a carbon fibre dash as part of the package too.

Whilst the loading continued, we went to have another look at the already built Megabusa sitting in the Reception room. Chris from Westfield just called us into a room to apologise that some of the parts had not arrived in time, and assured us that as soon as they arrive in they will be couriered to us next day. As already stated it has not really bothered us as nothing on the list will really hault the build progress. There is probably no more than 15 parts still to come, which is not too bad out of a whole car so we were far from annoyed.

Once the van was packed up fully we said our thankyou's and our goodbye's and were on our way.

We got home not too long before dark, and had to unload and get the van back to Gatwick. When unloading you realise just how well the staff had packed everything, they really knew what they were doing and there was no damage. The Westfield Chassis stands were set up, the chassis went on them and then the boxes were stashed around the garage. We had room for everything and then went to drop the van back, and prepared for a whole first day of building early in the morning tomorrow.

Brilliant day.

Matt

Early start, huge vehicle.
Centre mounted dash and the very necessary TomTom. We arrived Parked in poll position was this beauty of an XTR4!
Customer Megabusa in reception with pretty much every option box ticked. Glance into the factory to spy our new vehicle The green looks fantastic under the factory lighting
Literally a huge trolley of parts
The owners and their shopping Getting ready to be loaded into the van by the team
AP Racing 4 pot brake upgrade. They look fantastic, and I dread to think how well they stop
Pure fibreglass seats look great, fit perfectly and are the lightest seats I have ever felt Other cars in the factory
Chassis and bodywork loaded in safely On the journey home we spot an Ascari race trailor At home, most of the parts loaded off with just the bodywork to go
Chassis on the westfield stands where it will remain during the build
The only space for the one-piece part of the bodywork, the greenhouse...pardon the pun :). The other sections went up the loft.    

09 Dec 2007
Aluminium panels

One of the factory options for a Westfield kit is to have the aluminium panels (that turn the space-frame chassis into a tub) pre-fitted. In addition to this, you can have the fuel and brake pipes fitted too, but that wouldn't be any fun now would it? The whole idea of the kit car was to build it, so we opted to do it ourselves.

The panels must be trial fitted, clamped into place, drilled, removed, de-burred, refitted, sealed, and then riveted to the chassis. This must be done for the transmission tunnel (2 panels), the rear bulkhead, the front bulkhead (2 panels) the floor-pan (well over 200 rivets), and a couple of other panels had to be drilled and then removed until later on in the build.

Before taking delivery of the kit, I decided to stock up on 4.1mm drill bits (Bosch ones seem to last quite well), and also buy an air compressor and air riveter to make light work of the riveting as the hand riveter method would probably cause R.S.I!

Matt and I set to work fixing and drilling panels. Once we got one panel drilled and riveted we quickly realised that it would be far quicker to use a drill each which meant we drilled twice as fast. Then once we removed the panel and applied the sealer, Matt would go round the panel inserting rivets and I would follow him with the riveter.

After doing a couple of panels, we found it best not to wipe the excess silicon sealer at all. Instead, just let it dry and it doesn't cause any smudging - you just peal it off.

The floor-pan was the biggest job with so much drilling and riveting, but we managed all of the panelling in just one day. This was something I thought would take 2-4 days at least, but with 2 or 3 people you can plough through is very quickly. I wouldn't fancy it with a manual riveter though!

Laurence

The bare space-frame chassis waiting for panel fitment. The first panel clamped into place ready for drilling (this panel is not actually riveted until the propshaft is fitted). The rear bulkhead fitted into place ready to be secured. This panel took a bit of persuasion to get into place.
The rear bulkhead panel drilled and removed ready for silicon sealing and riveting. Rear bulkhead sealed and fitted into place. Front bulkhead panels fitted into place.
Front view of the front bulkhead. Over 220 holes need drilling and riveting on this section. Two drills and an air riveter made very light work of it though. Here's one I made earlier!
Back up the right way, a good first day's work.    

11 Dec 2007
Fuel pipes

With the aluminium panels fitted, we could now begin to run the fuel lines from the rear of the chassis to the front. Westfield supply 2 pieces of pipe which must be bent to shape and then fixed to the chassis using rivets and P-clips (send and return).

We set about bending the "send" fuel line first. We actually got a surprising amount of the pipe bent using our feet, the floor, and our hands, but then the 90 deg bend at the end went all wrong and the pipe flattened which would severely restrict fuel flow. The pipe cannot be bent back as it will become brittle and shear, so it was scrap!

DO NOT ATTEMPT TO BEND THE FUEL PIPES WITHOUT USING A PIPE BENDER!

We gave up early wasting a whole evening's work, and feeling very deflated knowing we would need to get hold of another fuel pipe from Westfield, and a Pipe Bender!

Laurence

The end result of not using a pipe bender!    

12 Dec 2007
Fuel pipes round 2

After the failed attempt at bending the fuel line yesterday, I went to Machine Mart first thing in the morning before starting work for the day and got hold of an automotive pipe bender (pictured below). It cost under £13 and looks like it will do the job nicely. I used it a couple of times on the scrap pipe which we damaged yesterday and it looks like it will work very well. Very tight, controlled bends, and the pipe cannot slip or rotate either. Excellent!

We began running the "send" pipe from the back of the chassis to the front. We went along marking with a pen, making 1 bend at a time, then re-fitting to check the next bend location. It's quite time consuming, but it's something you want to get right first time as your changes cannot be undone!

The pipe bender makes very light work of the bending and is especially good at making "S" shaped bends, where you need to drop the pipe down an inch (to clear the seat mounting holes for example). Eventually we had a shape we were happy with, and so we started drilling holes into the chassis, fitting P-clips around the pipe, and then riveting into place.

It quickly became apparent that all of the holes should be drilled BEFORE riveting the pipe into place other wise the drill-points become difficult to access, and it gets worse the more rivets you do as the pipe will be more reluctant to move.

The "send" line is now nicely in place, but we'll have to wait until Westfield send us a new pipe before we can run the "return" line. Luckily, we can move onto something else in the meantime as the fuel lines do not interfere with anything else at this stage.

Laurence

Looking from the rear of the car down the transmission tunnel, you can see the route of the send pipe. It's a very tight and neat fit. Here is the send pipe looking from the front. You can see how it terminates on the passenger side bulkhead.  

15 Dec 2007
Brake Pipes

The AP Racing brake master cylinder was first to be fitted, on the other side of the pedals. Westfield had accidentally left out the nuts to secure this into place, so we just used some M8 locking nuts as a temporary solution. Also, the prefitted studs for the master cylinder to bolt onto do not exist as the manual states. Instead, you use M8 bolts (30mm I think). With this in place we ran the first brake line from the master cylinder, up the side of the chassis frame heading towards the front of the car, along the top of the frame and then it had to be bent downwards and back up into the bottom of the T-piece which was drilled and screwed into place. The brake pipe could comfortably be bent by hand and were then drilled and riveted into place.

Out of each side of the front T-piece, the smaller brake lines were ran along the front of the chassis frame where the T-piece was situated and bent in an S shape and left to hang by the holes next to where the front brake disks will be.

Another T-piece had to be drilled and riveted onto the same panel that the master cylinder sat on (behind the pedals). The smallest of all the brake lines was run from the master cylinder, into the side of this and then from the other side of the T-piece all the way down to the rear of the car, through the transmission tunnel (the opposite side to the fuel lines) and then to the T-piece at the rear of the car. The 2 smaller rear brake lines were then run opposite ways around the part of the chassis securing the diff and bent to where the rear brake disks will be situated. The brake pipes were drilled and riveted with the supplied P-clips throughout the car.

A word of warning: There is a small section of pipe that comes out of the secondary master cylinder port and into the T piece which you fit to the bulkhead. I would strongly suggest you fit the clutch master cylinder mechanism first, as the image in the manual tells you to run the brake pipe right into the route of the clutch master cylinder. It's much easier to fit the clutch MS FIRST, and then you can see exactly where you can run the brake pipe without fouling the mechanism.

Matt

First brake line running from brake master cylinder up the chassis rail towards the front of the car The brake line runs in front of the second rail at the front of the car and loops down, into the bottom of the drilled T-piece 2 smaller brake lines then come out of the side of the T-piece and are bent into an 'S' shape leading to where the brakes will be situated
Another view of the previous pic The smallest brake line coming from the master cylinder into the other T-piece. Then the longest brake line beginning its journey to the rear of the car through the transmission tunnel, on the opposite side to the fuel lines
Showing the brake pipe avoiding the reverse box mounts View from the rear of the car showing the brake line's path down the drivers side of the transmission tunnel, with both fuel lines on the left
The brake line gos straight into the T-piece and then the 2 smaller brake lines go opposite ways around the chassis surrounding where the differential goes and stop at the brackets by the loops  

19 Dec 2007
Wiring loom, clutch master cylinder and fuel pipe return

Tonight we had to back-pedal slightly to do some older jobs which didn't get finished, and then carry on with the wiring loom. The first job was to run the return fuel pipe. We damaged the first pipe by trying to bend the pipe without a pipe bender. DO NOT ATTEMPT THIS as you'll flatten the pipe. Westfield sent a replacement pipe yesterday, so we got to work on it first as you need to take your time with it.

We made the first couple of bends and then tried it on for size. We found that the more times you offer it to the car and then remove it to bend, the better it turns out. Once it's shaped, drill all of the holes before riveting any of the P-clips to avoid drilling through the pipe by mistake.

The pipe was not our best work, but looks good enough to not move, or foul any of the moving parts (I hope).

The next job was to fit the clutch master cylinder reservoir. There are 2 pre-drilled holes on the frame, but DO NOT use these as a) they are too big for a 4.1 rivet, and b) they are for the gear shift linkage. We riveted the bracket into place, and then screwed the reservoir into place. Westfield still have a few bits to send us, and one of them is the rubber pipe which sends the fluid to the clutch master cylinder.

The last job of the evening was to finish the wiring loom. We got as far as feeding the fuse box wires through the scuttle panel, then found that the screws we needed (M5x25mm) were missing, but Westfield have now sent them. The loom must be separated into front and rear, then you can begin fastening the loom to the chassis.

The only complicated bit was working out how to fix the loom to the underside of the transmission tunnel when a drill was nowhere close to fitting in the gap. Eventually we decided to drill from the top through both sides of the chassis rail. This forms a straight and neat hole at the bottom, and the hole at the top of the rail will just get covered up by the panel and the trimming.

We followed the guide and fixed the loom all the way to the rear, but we have left off the last few loom fixings until the diff is in place, since the ATB diff we opted for is different to the one pictured. When we can see how it fits we'll decide the best route for the last 2 feet of the loom to follow.

Fingers crossed the diff and reverse box will be here by the end of the week...

Matt

The finish of both fuel lines on the passenger bulkhead panel.....'return and feed' View from the rear showing both fuel lines riveted to the left hand side of the transmission tunnel
Careful not to block the seat mount holes with the second fuel line. The very neat wiring loom, wrapped up as it came. Fuses passed through and secured on scuttle panel
Wiring loom on underside of scuttle panel before being secured with rivets, cable-ties and clips. Securing the loom at the rear THe loom being fed from front to back, secured to the top of the transmission tunnel on the left hand side. The wires hanging down on the right is just the dash loom hanging down after being passed through the scuttle panel
The path of the loom, coming out of the rear of the transmission tunnel on the same path as the brake line, and going to one corner, back, across where the rear of the diff will be and to the other corner    

20 Dec 2007
Wheels Arrived

We had lots of trouble searching for all the relevant information regarding wheel sizes....this required numerous phone calls to Westfield, and many searches on owners forums, search engines. Eventually we found all we needed and got the wheels of choice ordered and have decided to list all the details here so other owners can find the information with greater ease.

Originally I wanted 13 inch Team Dynamics Pro Race 1.2's in Black. I have loved these wheels ever since I first laid eyes on them and had seen them fairly commonly on kit cars and just assumed that they would come in 13 inch sizes. However, they do not, they come in 14 inch sizes minimum but Westfield assured us the car performs leaps and bounds better on 13 inch wheels.

The search continued, but eventually we laid eyes on Compomotive CXR's. They dom come in black as wanted, and they are 4.8kg per wheel. SOLD!

Tyres we only had one set in mind....Toyo R888 semi slick (but road-legal) tyres.

Westfield had told us 205 profile all-round was what they recommended but after talking to another owner he recommended 185's at the front and i quote "unless you like oversteering into lamposts"! We decided to try 185's a go.

Anyway, here is the required spec for wheels and tyres for a Megabusa:

 WHEELS: 7 x 13 inch, et24 offset, Ford 108 PCD (4 stud pattern)

TYRES: 185/60/13 at front, 205/60/13 at rear.

We are really happy with the look of the wheels, they should set the lime green bodywork a treat, and the light blue RAYS lightweight wheel nuts look great too.

Hope this info helps...

Matt

   

23 Dec 2007
Quaiffe Rear Differential fitting

Yes, it did turn up before Christmas, everything required did, much to our relief...just the exhaust and digital dash are still to come now!

After running the wiring loom correctly around the car and to the rear through the drivers side of the transmission tunnel we just finished it off after a trial fit of where the diff would sit just to see where best to run the final part of the loom right across the rear from drivers side to passenger side. The clearance is huge between the diff and loom so we went ahead and drilled the required holes and riveted the clips and then left the cable ties loose just in case things needed a last minute adjustment. What we deemed to be daunting (the wiring loom) turned out to be very, very straightforward thanks to how neatly the wiring comes.

Anyway the diff....

A late start today as Laurence got back from a weekend in Dublin late, so not much of an opportunity to get much done. The diff is fairly heavy - heavy enough to be awkward to get in position without scratching the chassis or a brake pipe, but its not overly heavy. I just lifted it into position and Laurence put the rod studs through the holes to support it whilst we found the necessary nuts to tighten it and then it was literally a case of just tightening and torquing it up. Fairly straightforward job. It was very cold tonight, so we just left one of the propshafts until tomorrow!

The diff stud nuts have a habit moving down the thread on one side, but not the other, leaving the stud unevenly spaced. The best way to stop this happening is to tighten one side to where you want the bolt to finish on the thread, then put another nut on behind it. You then tighten this nut against the other and this will prevent the nut from moving any further down the thread - allowing you to tighten the other side easily.

Matt

   

24 Dec 2007
The longer propshaft

We were going to crack on with the rear wishbones today, however, 3 of the wishbone threads had been tapped by Westfield as requested by us, but one had not and we did not have a tap (1/2 inch UNF) so we were in a spot of trouble. This thread also managed to damage 2 rose joint threads too! But as we were at a stage where numerous parts could be done in any particular order we chose to crack on with the propshaft from the rear differential upto where the reverse box will sit. Once again this was a case of putting it the right way round and tightening it up. However its never quite that easy, it took most of the time to find the right bolts and then trying to torque the bolts up with the transmission tunnel in the way proved very awkward too. However it didn't take long and it was in, next was the reverse box.

Christmas Eve being Christmas Eve, we started late and had to pack up early as a night on the town was in order.

Merry Christmas and to be continued.....

Matt

   

26 Dec 2007
Reverse Box

With the family round all day yesterday and today we were struggling to spend too much time on the car but we got a little bit done. First off it was our uncle Alan to the rescue who brought his tapping tool round and attacked the dodgy thread with nothing but a successful outcome. He used to run an automotive engineering firm and had seen many problem threads before. He cleaned up the thread on the offending wishbone first, and then both of the rose joints in just a matter of minutes. All sorted now - each rose joint threads up beautifully..

We just spent a little bit of time on the Westfield Reverse Gearbox. Opening the bubble-wrap it is a lovely bit of kit, and fairly easy to fit too. The supports had to be put on the reverse box (off the car) but they had to be left loose to allow the rods to get all the way through much easier. The detachable reverse gearbox mount (the front and bottom mount) had to be removed and then we held the reverse box into position (Westfield logo facing the rear of the car) and put the 215mm rods through the gearbox brackets and then put the detachable mount back on the car once the rods had gone through them. Once equal thread was showing at both ends, nyloc nuts and threadlock were put on and everything tightened. It takes a bit of polite force, but with enough slack in all of the fixings you can get it all to line up, and then just tighten each of the fixings.

Then we secured the prop already attached to the diff (the longer of the 2 propshafts) to the reverse gearbox. Torqued them up and then it was time to call it a day and back to Boxing Day family time.

Over the next couple of days there should be some major progress with the front propshaft, front and rear suspension, front and rear hubs and front and rear brakes.

Matt

   

27 Dec 2007
Suspension front and rear

I had decided not to work between Christmas and New Year and set aside most of the time for working on the car. Today's job would be fitting suspension and wishbones. We were both looking forward to this, as up until now it didn't look like much had happened to the car, but after today it would look like a car instead of a bathtub.

I started on the rear section first. Lots of copper grease on all of the threads and moving parts and then the top and bottom wishbones can be bolted into position. The entire setup should only be finger tight until the car is finished (to aid the geo setup I presume). Many visitors have since commented on "That bolt not being tight!" :)

After getting both sets of wishbones on, and then realising that the uprights would not fit, I realised that I had fitted the lower wishbones upside down, so off they came, and they were refitted the correct way and everything lines up beautifully. I had to enlarge one of the holes in the rear bulkhead panel to get full access to a bolt, but other than this it's very straightforward.

It was now time to fit the suspension dampers. We were supplied with 2 pairs of front suspension - one with blue springs, one with black. After an hour of looking on the web for the difference and finding nothing, I decided to "get technical" and compress the dampers to see which was fitted with a higher spring rate. The black springs were much harder than the blue, so they must be the front units. I then looked through the item list and it listed "shock absorber std front", and then "shock absorber bike front" so I am happy that both front and rear dampers are "front" units on this kit. Further down the parts list I see "SPRING 7x200x2 BUS/NTR FR BLK" so I am happy that the black set go on the front.

With these bolted the next job is to fit the driveshafts, but we quickly run into a problem. The nearside stubshaft does not fit through the hub. We have given it to a friend to see what they think, and he has agreed that there is something wrong with it - the splined shaft seems to be the wrong size! The offside unit fits just fine, but we can't fit it tinto place because the driveshaft bolts are missing from the kit. We'll ring Westfield when they are back from their Christmas break on the 2nd January.

It's now time to fit the front suspension to the car. More copper greasing, and the front wishbones can be fitted and the dampers bolted into place. We decided at this point to fit the front brakes as the AP's take up a box by themselves and it would be good to get rid of it, so the ball joints were fitted into place. We had to get some extra bolts as the size stated for the lower ball joint will not fit the Megabusa chassis. Once they were bolted down we fitted the front uprights, discs, and calipers - again, finger tight for now.

With the shock absorbers bolted into place it looks much more like a car. However, from this stage you should watch your head when under the car it's very easy to whack your head on a disc when standing up. You'll see what I mean!

Laurence

Rear wishbones fitted (the wrong way). Another view of the rear wishbones. Rear upright.
Damper fitted to the rear upright. I had to enlarge this hole slightly to gain access to the wishbone bolt. I filed it down afterwards to smooth it. The rear suspension filly fitted
Hub and stub-shaft fitted into place before we removed them. Driveshafts with no bolts :( Front lower wishbones fitted.
Front upper wishbones fitted. Cycle wing brackets fitted (as per the advice of the manual). Reverse view.
Lower ball joints fitted. We needed to buy longer bolts for this. Brake and upright assembly fitted. AP's look lovely on the car.
A full view - looks like a proper rolling chassis now :)    

28 Dec 2007
Steering rack and front prop shaft

Today I set to work fixing the steering rack into place since we couldn't fit the rear brakes until the drive shaft bolts were sent. Following the SEi manual, I fitted the rubber mountings to the rack. I didn't have any silicon lubricant, so I used a bit of washing up liquid as rubber does not object to this. With the washing up liquid and a rubber mallet, the metal clamps fitted over very easily. I bolted these down and then span the track rod ends into the shaft.

When I fixed the track rod ends to the steering arms on the uprights I knew something was wrong. Both wheels were pointing inwards and then I remembered that we has specified the wider front track option. This means the front wheels are further apart from each other, and then steering rack was not wide enough. I was thinking that Westfield had sent the wrong rack, but were closed for a couple of weeks so I couldn't ring them. I returned to the house quite annoyed, and then though there was no way that Westfield would develop an entirely new steering rack for this upgrade, so I began looking around for something that would extend the steering rack, and I found them almost immediately. Without instructions, I fitted them along with a nut each side, and it seems right. The steering is still not straight, but we can fully adjust the tracking once the car is ready to be driven, and do the camber adjustments at the same time.

The last job today is the front propshaft, which connects the drive from the engine to the front of the reverse box. Looking at the torque values for these nuts, I realise they must be thread-locked too which I didn't do for the other bolts, so I decide to go back and do each of the other bolts at the other end of the reverse box, and also the rear diff too. In addition, I fitted a spring washer to each as a double precaution. You will reach a point where the torque you apply will spin the propshaft instead of torquing the bolt. At this point you should stick a screwdriver into the propshaft joint. When the screwdriver meets the chassis it will wedge and allow you to torque the bolt.

I marked each of the bolts with a line so we can see if they move at all, but I doubt they will. The only thing to worry about is if the tensile strength is high enough, but I think the driveshaft bolts will be the only ones to possibly worry about as they are situated after the 3.3 final drive and not before it.

Laurence

The steering rack fitted into place with the clamps and rubber mounts. Track rod ends fitted. Steering arms connected to track rod ends - that steering angle doesn't look right!
The correct adapters fitted to increase the width of the rack and make it compatible with the wide front track option. The front propshaft fitted.  

29 Dec 2007
Handbrake, transmission tunnel panels, and gear shift linkage

Just a couple of hours spent on the car today. We fitted the handbrake lever which requires the drilling of two large holes in the two cross-members in the transmission tunnel, and then just needed bolting down.

We looked at the diagram for ages trying to work out which bracket the handbrake cable is supposed to pass through, and then gave up. (A later phone call to Westfield revealed that the bracket is in fact missing from our chassis and they are sending us a bolt-in section to correct this).

The chassis was still covered in swarf from day 1 of the build, and we were about to fit the transmission tunnel panels which also required sealing. They had already been drilled from day 1 of the build, so we decided now was a good time to vacuum out the swarf.

Once this had been done, we sealed and riveted the centre panels.

With the panels in place, we could drill through them and into the gear shift bracket. The manual says this bracket should not protrude above the transmission tunnel, so we did it level with it thinking this would be best. (It turns out this was still too high as the rod later fouled the top of the chassis by the fuse box. We have had to order a new bracket as we couldn't re-drill the original.)

We fixed the quadrant to the chassis next to the clutch fluid reservoir and then finished up there.

Laurence

The handbrake fitted into place. There should be a 3rd cross-member by the yellow blob on the cable, but it's missing from our chassis :( Kriss getting involved with the vacuum. That's a lot of concentration for a simple domestic task. Panels fitted (very dark - sorry)
Transmission tunnel panel Transmission tunnel panel The handbrake. Despite all of the work so far on the Westfield, it's still not as sexy as the Noble!
The gear shift bracket. This sits too high so we have ordered another one which ideally should sit around a centimetre lower. The quadrant that the rod from the gear shift bracket attaches to.  

30 Dec 2007
Fuel system

Despite not being able to fit our driveshafts due to one of the stub shafts being wrong, we decided to fit the fuel system, but just not secure the tank into place so we still had lots of access to fit the shafts once they became available.

Following the Megabusa manual instead of the SEi manual, task number 1 was to fit the fuel inertia cut-off switch to the chassis. This gadget is responsible for cutting the power supply to the fuel pump in the event of a sudden impact.

Dan had come round to help us this evening to finally earn his part-timer status (and also because he hadn't even seen the car up until now). After a bit of head-spinning, we worked out where the inertia switch was supposed to be fixed, so we drilled the holes into the chassis and then secured the switch into place. Make sure you leave enough room to be able to press the switch down as there is a chassis rail directly above it! Once in place we connected it to the wiring loom as per the instructions.

The tank is situated on the back of the chassis, but foam tape must be laid so the tank sits on a soft base rather than bare metal, because the movement could wear the tank over time. We laid foam tape everywhere the tank will be in contact with.

The same applies for the tank straps that secure the tank into place. The manual states that 1 inch tape must be used, so we just doubled up the 1/2 inch tape we had. It's easiest if you pull off the tape backing just a few inches ahead of the section that you are sticking so you can "steer" the tape.

Now on to the fuel pump. The pump sits a little low for my liking, but I was only following what the manual says! You will need two people for this. It's easiest to mark the chassis and then drill right through from there, then get a second person to guide the bolt through the chassis. Also, the fuel pump has a foam sleeve which it sits inside before fitting in the bracket. Use washing up liquid get it in otherwise you'll be there all day.

Once clamped down, the pump can still move a little, but the fuel hoses will prevent this movement once connected. You now need to secure the fuel pump section of the wiring loom to the chassis and then crimp some connections to connect the pump to the loom. Once we had done this, we fixed the fuel pump nipples into place - largest at the rear (low pressure in), smallest at the front (high pressure out), and then connected the fuel pump "out" to the fuel send line, and then covered it in a plastic sleeve. There are several different types of fuel hose used for this section - make sure you use the right one!

We have left the rest of the fuel piping until the tank is fitted. Once the driveshafts have been fitted the tank should drop in without any fuss at all.

Laurence

Fuel inertia switch fitted. Foam tape laid on the chassis to protect the tank. Tank brackets also lined with foam tape.
The fuel tank itself to be fitted later. This is the extra range version holding approximately 8 gallons. Fuel pump secured into place on the chassis inside its foam sleeve. The pump connected to the loom and plumbed into the send line on the chassis.
Reverse view of the fuel pump. Once the drive shafts are in we can secure the tank and connect the last two fuel hoses (and electricals).    


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