Tuesday, 26 December 2006

A Brand New Coat

The Midget was sent to Riverside. "I'm in no hurry" I said and went to Seattle, then China, Helsinki and Madrid.

About 6 months later the midget was ready.

Now in her original colour again, British racing Green (GN29), Jemima looked superb. Time at last to start putting her back together. All the bits taken off 20 years ago, painted and wrapped and boxed were finally required once more.

The problem is what order do you fit these things? The first things off, and painted, are probably the last things to refit but I was keen to make an impression. So I fitted the heater and fan. Then took the fan off again as the fuse box was underneath, and I couldn't fit the pedal box with it fitted.

Next I fitted the lights, this I decided would be easy and would help make Jemima look like a real car again. And then the windscreen, which came with some shims, which I couldn't remember where they went. After fitting it I read the book "Original Sprite and Midget" and had to take it off again and put them in the right place (between the aluminium post and body, not as posh washers for the bolts).

The boot seal was fitted and the door seals, then I found the doors wouldn't close. This was a big problem. The seal was cut and modified and eventually the body (near the A post) was walloped with a large hammer. The door would close now but the fit wasn't as good.

This isn't going to be an easy jigsaw to assemble...

Tuesday, 12 December 2006

The Rub

So, another week and another trip to Madrid and still no further with the car.

'There was no stopping me' I said earlier. Well maybe there was.

The problem for a few years was getting the right finish. For example - I had replaced the lower half of the wing. But the join wasnt very good and the top bit would occasionally show signs of rust bubbling underneath.

So I would strip the paint back and attack the area with various rust eating chemicals, then my boss would call and suggest I could go to Hong Kong, or Brisbane or somewhere.

So I would have to quickly paint it over and pack my bags and go. Enthusiasm to start again would take some time to return. The front end was proving to be tricky as well. A new bonnet was purchased some time ago and the alignment with the old wings wasnt easy.

Eventually I decided enough was enough. My rubbing down wasnt very good and the panel fit at the front was always going to be awkward so when the trip to Seattle came up I booked the car into the local shop (Riverside Autos) and looked forward to a gleaming new car on my return.

Sunday, 3 December 2006

A Double Garage

I've just come back from a week in Madrid, another reason for maybe not working on the car. Maybe going again later in the week.

Anyway back to the story,
This time when we moved house we got a double garage. Space for Jemima and for the TR5 I bought a little earlier. Unfortuneatley The TR5 and the daily his-'n'-hers drivers (VW camper, Bedford Rascal) took up quite a bit of time to keep them going so Jemima was neglected quite a bit longer than was intended.

The TR5 was sold in 2003, the VW and Rascal went a year later.

Now there was no stopping me...