Sunday, May 13, 2012

Distractions and updates.

First up this is where we are with the Mustang: it's looking pretty gutted and the axle is still firmly attached to the drive shaft. There is a 12 sided socket/spanner we need in a specific size which Jeff is getting tomorrow. Then it's all systems go!

I used to be a Mustang honest! (huge sippy cup just in shot...)

We've been using a lot of Jeff's tools to get this done, mostly because his are all nicely organised and to avoid getting them too mixed in with Daniel's. So we've been being very careful not to muddle everything up. Or you could just spray all Jeff's one's we're using orange and be done with it...

This works too.

You can tell which one's we've used so far. They're distinctly less orange!

Distractions 2a:
 The Bandit is done. All rejetted, retuned and running like a champ. Those pipes may look stock but they've been drilled and it sounds sooo much better! 

Actually you can't see the pipes, just take my word for it!

Scooter is ready to rock!

Distractions 2b: 
The Harley is coming back together. The back wheel has been off, brakes replaced, belts checked, powder coating chipped in the process -awesome- and now the brakes are being drained. 

Back wheel is on again, almost there!

The air box cover is off so they can figure out how to wire in the HID headlight Daniel's been wanting to install for a while. With all the extra wiring for the LEDs and the Power Commander there's not a lot of room left for anything else. But between 2 Crew Chiefs something will get figured out!

Brake draining....

Daniel trying so hard not to stick his tongue out as he concentrates..

Pretty pictures of the Harley.....

Gremlin Bell, vital.

The Mistress

All this is just too much fun!!

 I leave you with the Workshop rules...

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Arsing and axles.

Day 5

  Today's job was a small one, to remove the rear axle and to learn the importance of the arsing about in the garage that accompanies all mechanicing. Jeff and Daniel had far too much fun rejigging the Bandit after it's first test rides, it now runs beautiful. Actually the workshop rules I got for Daniel sum it up nicely, I'll get a pic of them. 
  So anyway, the rear brakes came off without any trouble. Given they were rusty old drum brakes we were predicting a hell of a lot of levering, hammering and an eventual "teach Gillian how to use the grinder" session. Not a problem seeing as we're planning a disc conversion but as it turned out they were in pretty good shape and came off with a minimum of jiggling and we were able to salvage everything just in case the disc brake plan falls through. Got to give the Mustang more credit, it's not as knackered as it looks. Filthy? Yes. Completely buggered? No. 

Brake pads are none too shabby.

Once the brakes were disconnected and dripping safely, we used the joy that is 3 feet of leverage to unbolt the axle and lower it down on 2 jacks. We then managed to pull it out from under the back of the car and that's where it's still sitting. The bolts holding the axle to the drive shaft are resisting being removed and doing a good job of it too which means it's too big and unwieldy (not to mention heavy) to move. Perhaps tomorrow's "put the Harley together" day will include a "detach the axle from the drive shaft" sidebar. 

That's where it's sitting right now :P

We don't have horses we have car pieces! 

Also, Mechanix gloves mean less black hands and the only thing you can safely eat while doing these jobs are lollies. Not American "Smarties" those are not Smarties people!! 

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

It's peanutbutter tranny time!

Day 4.

First up we got the right size bolts to attach the engine to the stand so it can be worked on. At $4 a pop they'd better be the best bolts ever!
Engine standy goodness.
Time to take the transmission out. All afternoon under the car after we got it completely up on jacks, wheels off the ground. Bolts so covered in shite you can't tell they're bolts type of thing and transmission fluid like black treacle. With all the black goop falling on my head I've eaten my daily allowance of engine grease today. Mmm yum. At one point Claire was in the engine bay (not a comfy spot to be sitting!) and me and Jeff were under the car trying to maneuver this thing out. We had the engine hoist out 4 times today! Should have just left it up!  But the tranny is out and the wheels are off. Progress has been made and a quick test suggests we have a limited slip differential which is good apparently.

Heap o' tyres.

Mahoosive hole where transmission used to be..

The beast itself.
2 posts in one day, I need to get better at writing stuff as it happens lol.

Distractions 1.

Distraction 1a) Never content with only 1 project, there are a couple of others going on at the same time. The Bandit, regular ride to work every day type bike needs a carb' rebuild. We've been here a couple times before since the guy we bought it off had installed a fuel cut off valve with improper hosing that kinked and caused all sorts of problems with the carb's, the petcock, you name it. This time a full rebuild seems to have done the trick. Daniel is on a test ride as I type so fingers crossed he's ok. Jeff, master of the carburetor has helped with this rebuild, last time a partial rebuild didn't fix it completely, so this has to. Right?

Crew chiefs can fix anything...

Distraction 1b) We're trying to get this baby road legal. Daniel's pride and joy: a 2006 Harley Davidson Night Rod. Uber custom and called The Mistress she needs a new rear brake and work to repair damage caused during shipping her from the UK. I personally can't flippin' wait til she's back, that seat is SO much more comfy for long rides than the Bandit!

Fix me!

This must be heaven for Jeff and Daniel. What a Man Cave!! I should get them a mini fridge and speed dial to Dominoes. 

Friday, May 4, 2012

Engine removal day..

Day 3: 
Today was the last day of relatively easy jobs. Today the engine came out and I learnt the importance of leverage. We started with the radiator fan and it's cowling, and of course the radiator. Then undid the bolts holding in the exhaust manifolds, removed the alternator and loads of other bits, disconnected the air conditioning hoses before loosening the engine mounts. This was distinctly not fun. At one point a 3 foot ratchet extension was necessary. Luckily this is the bit Jeff enjoys, strange man that he is, figuring out how to get to the bolts up inside stuff. Man, that's one paragraph and it took us damn near all day! Anyway we got to the point where the engine should be unhooked just as Daniel got home, then followed a lot of vigorous jiggling until the extra bits holding it on were located and removed, there's always something. 

Searching and jiggling...

The moment it came free!

Yay engine!

Hole where engine used to be and a lot of hoses, cables and assorted gubbins.

So today was pretty momentous. I am filthy but happy and have used a unawiggle for the first time today.

Witness the filth! I swear I was dirtier in real life!

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

The dream to end all dreams..

Our plan, which is fast becoming a reality is to replace the 1.6lr Pinto engine with a 5.0lr Mustang engine. Reinforce the Capri to withstand the extra power and maybe, just maybe supercharge it. 

Join us for the ride?

This is the beginning of the blog but not really the beginning of the car's life with us, we bought it in 2008, MOT'd and running. The previous owner told us he'd recently rebuilt the engine, actually he'd rebuilt the bottom of the engine and the inevitable happened and we needed a new head gasket. Twice. Since 2008 all that's been done to the car is a new set of tyres, leaf springs from a 2.8lr Capri in the rear, a new fuel pump and of course the head rebuilds. He's not run that much because of the head issues, all this time we've been planning and in the meantime got married, got orders and moved to Florida. Which is where it gets good. We brought the car with us, shipped him over then collected him from New Orleans and drove him home with a stuck front brake. An hour and a half by the side of the road in the arse end of no where beating the brake with a tyre iron to try and get it unstuck followed by 200 miles of no braking fun. Not our finest hour. 
But we made it, all the way. Being in the States the Capri is kind of rare, Mustangs however are not and it didn't take long for us to find a suitable donor car.

This is it, a 1988 Mustang GT 5.0. Nice huh? The guts from this will be going into the Capri. My other half will be filling in the technical stuff, I'm learning as we go. The Capri is my dream car, growing up in the 1980's right on the A30 in the UK the Capri made an impression and many years later this project is my dream come true. I want to keep the look as it is, redoing things but leaving the aesthetic as it was meant to be. That way the arsehole driving the Audi is going to get a shock when we whoop him at the lights lol!

Side by side.

We have both cars, we have the dream, next step: get dirty! Gone is the gorgeous manicure and cute outfits and in are the old USAF BDU's and old gig tshirts. Bring me my ratchet! 

Day 1:
We rip into the front end, off comes the bonnet, the front bumper and wings. The body kit is original apparently and is what makes the car a GT, a ton of aftermarket work has been done over the years to this car so we're pulling out broken under car lighting and marveling at the strut bar that seems purely aesthetic. If anyone can explain the cardboard and wood pieces inside the bumper please enlighten us!! 

This is what we have after our first days graft:

Day 2: 
We get the doors off, all this is being done while trying to save as much as possible as we're splitting the car with the guy we bought it from, he needs body we need engine, it's a good deal. This of course means not just cutting the wiring. Amazingly with power hooked up to the battery terminals we're able to get the electric windows down and eventually get the doors off, the boot and the rear body kit. Leaving us with this..

It's jacked up in the front, at a point where it doesn't become a huge see saw and is ready for the interior to be ripped out and the engine to be pulled. That I believe is scheduled for Thursday...


Welcome to our blog! This is where we'll be chronicling the rebuild of our 1983 Ford Capri. It's a 1.6lr in pretty damn good shape for it's age, the body is solid and the engine and almost everything is still stock. Here he is :

Me grinning like a  fool just after we got him home :D
Loving the wonky spoiler. Hating those stripes!

We have pretty big plans for this baby and we're in a unique position to be able to pull it off. So, the Capri was Britain's answer to the American Muscle car right? How about we turn this pretty unremarkable Capri into a true Muscle car? That's just what we intend to do.