September 12th

Yet again, I've got miles behind so this is a sort of catching up entry. Especially so as I'm thinking about some momentous changes...

Alternator back in againFirstly I finished the alternator bracket, although I had to modify it a bit more as the one that appears here turned out to foul the alternator itself when I was trying to get the belt on in the first place.

If this doesn't fix the problem then it may be that I'll have to look elsewhere. One thing that has often seemed a potential problem is that as the engine moves about it seems possible for the belt to touch the chassis on that diagonal brace that can be seen in the photo.

The problem is that I would guess that would make the powder coating on the brace and it seems untouched. Certainly, one thing I've been thinking about is arranging for some sort of brace to steady the engine, which I think some SD1s had anyway.

Lengthened throttle pedalOne other modification I've been wanting to do for a while was to make it possible to heel-and-toe in the car. To be honest the fact that Dax sell a performance car with pedals that are so badly laid out seems very, very poor. The pedals in my old Westfield were wonderful in comparison.

Anyway, after much thought I decided that the first problem was that the pedal (well, the bit you press with your foot) was just too small. So, I modified it by welding a longer bit of steel onto it. The standard pedal is about 2cm x 4cm which is absolutely ridiculous. You can just about see the join between the old and new bits in this photo.

The end result of this is much better than it was before, but it's still not excellent. I think perhaps it now needs to be a bit wider too. The other problem is that I still don't seem to have managed to bleed the brakes properly. I think I'll try and get hold of a big syringe to suck fluid out of the bleed nipples, which is reckoned to be one way to do it better.

I took the car to Scotland in the summer, doing about 1300 miles in a week. The car mostly ran very well. Apart, that is, from a period when it started pinking and then running badly. Following I hunch I had a look at the contact points and one set was very badly burnt. I replaced them along with the condenser too. Other people have had similar problems with the Mallory distributor so perhaps at some point I ought to consider going electronic.

Unless, that is, I sell the car! I've been thinking about this recently as a consequence of rationalising the car collection. We've sold my MR2 and Anthea's MX5 and bought a Subaru Impreza which is great fun. One of the reasons for doing this is that I keep thinking what I really want to do is to compete. The Dax really isn't the car for that as it's probably worth about twice what a suitable competition car would be. The issue is what should I get/build? The possibilities are a Fisher Fury, the Stylus RT, the Sylva Mojo, a Ginette G20 and probably a load of things I haven't thought of. Probably the first thing, though, is to choose the series to compete in. A couple of obvious possibilities are the 750 Motor Club's kit car series. There's two of these, one for ordinary engined cars (including a special class for Zetec engined cars) and one for bike engined cars. I'm not entirely convinced about bike engines but it might be possible. The other series is Sports 1000, but that seems a bit more expensive.

I suppose the other possibility is to strip the Dax out and use that, but I suspect I'd need to do a lot of engine fettling, or spend a few thousand pounds on a super-duper V8 for that.

I may, of course, not do this but at the moment it's an interesting thought. Watch this space....

next page

in case you've got to this frame directly and can't get out, go here.