September 18th

There's really only a couple of major construction jobs left, in particular fitting of the dashboard. However, there are lots of little bits and pieces.

We all went up to the kit car show at Donington today. This wasn't really very good, although I suspect if you wanted to go on the track it might be quite fun. However, I picked up a new exhaust mounting, of a different size to the Westfield one, that holds the exhaust system at a rather better position and relieves the stress mentioned before.

Tom and I developed a liking for the Dax Kamala as well. Perhaps for a future build?

We had a look at a lot of other Westfields, as I'm still a bit jumpy about the slight asymmetry in the body/chassis fit. It seems that even the factory have the same trouble as me, as several of the cars on the stand had the same problem. This makes me feel a bit better, although I must admit to still thinking about taking all the bodywork off again.

We also had a look at the gear lever and handbrake gaiters on lots of cars. The cars on the Westfield stand all seemed to have sewn in leather gaiters, unlike the bits of vinyl we have that are not sewn in. We eventually decided that getting hold of some decent bezels, and trying to make a half-decent, but hidden, job of sewing them in ourselves was the right thing to do. Now I need to find some suitable bezels. (Or perhaps make them?)

Innocuous picture of front left brakesLater on we had a go at bleeding the brakes, with Tom pumping and me rushing around with the tubes and bottles. I don't think I've ever bled a braking system from scratch before and it was a bit difficult getting things going. Eventually we got somewhere, just as we ran out of fluid. So, not wanting to reuse the rather aerated stuff that's come out the other end I'll have to go and buy some more tomorrow.

Washer pipe next to batteryI also realised that although I had encased the washer bottle in a nice heat shield, I had omitted to route the output pipe to the jet itself. Of course, getting to the jet was now ferociously difficult on account of all the stuff in the scuttle. I ended up having to use large quantities of very hot water on the end of the tubing so that it could be fed onto the jet with the ends of two fingers.

The pipe had a rather tortuous route on its way to the jet, so I held it in place with P-clips, as here.

There's no word yet on the date for the SVA test, nor on the insurance application that I sent off last week. I'll have to do some chasing next week. I also need to get hold of some other forms for the registration, I think I need to phone the VRO for those.

September 19th

One of the curious sealing plates at the rear of the car.Finally got around to fitting the ally panels to the rear of the car. With a big of attention from a file these fit fairly well, like this.

After that was done I undersealed inside the rear wheel arches, hence the masking tape that is in this photo too. The theory is that undersealing the inside of the wing makes the top side less subject to crazing when attacked by stones from underneath. It seems a good story so I did it, even if putting underseal on a piece of plastic does seem rather odd. There are apparently some products around that actually leave a bungier rubber coating, but I haven't managed to track any down.

After that we had another go at bleeding the brakes, having acquired more brake fluid. This still wasn't too successful. It seems as though the rear brakes are fine, but air seems to come out of the front ones all the time, and the pedal is very spongy. I seem to remember that other people have complained about the difficulty of bleeding Westfield brakes so I'll see what discussion there is around about it. The brakes are probably good enough to be used to stop the car when we put it down, which is currently scheduled for next weekend. Perhaps one of top-pressure brake bleeding gadgets would do the job better, assuming that there isn't some horrible leak somewhere.

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