Monday 26 August 2013

Day 6 (Half day)

After the onslaught of yesterdays engine fitting I decided to take it a bit easier today by doing a few of the more trivial jobs. My wife Harriet kindly offering to help me with a few of them. All in all a relaxing but frustrating day given further missing parts.

Gear Lever

Very straightforward one we'd found the correct bolts. Again we spent longer sourcing the parts than fitting the item. 3 bolts and it was in, fixing directly to the end of the gearbox.

Gear Lever in Situ

Once the lever was on, all we had to do was screw in the 'reverse switch' to the side of the gearbox doing so though the access holes that are pre-drilled in the side panel for us within the drivers side foot well. The picture below shows the switch in place with the little green connectors attached. The manual at this point talks of blocking off these holes using some large rubber grommets but we couldn't find those for love nor money. I'll be sure to ask Derek at the factory about those tomorrow just in case they missed the delivery.

Reverse switch access hole
Engine wiring and clutch release

With the engine now in the engine bay, now seemed as good a time as any to try and marry up the various parts of the wiring loom to the various connectors on the engine. The main looms were connected together (easy as its obvious they are a matched pair). We also attached the battery earth lead to the Bell Housing (hope I attached it to the right place) and the battery positive lead to the starter motor solenoid.

Main loom male/female connectors

The manual suggested we also needed to make sure that the brake switch (accessed through the pedal box cover that can be removed) was also attached into the loom. It was, having been done for us by Caterham already. Thats now the second time I've taken the lid off that to find the relevant job inside has already been done. Think I will leave it off for now.

Brake switch with connectors in place

Then it was on to fitting the clutch release cable to the attachment on the clutch master cylinder. This one confused me for a bit as there was already an insert in this fixing which needed to be removed before fitting the banjo bolt that was supposed to locate into the fitting. Caterham had kindly arranged the banjo bolt of us as part of their engine build process so it was already waiting for us at the other end of the cable coming out of the bell housing. simply removed the plug on the end and fixed it onto the clutch master cylinder.

Banjo bolt at end of clutch release cable

Exhaust Primaries, Collector and Silencer

My wife kindly lent me a hand with this one as it wasn't going to be easy to do single handedly. We started by removing the exhaust gasket which had been loosely screwed to the engine during its assembly. all the bolts were loose so we took those out, removed the protective film that was covering the exhaust ports and set the gasket to one side. Then we fed each of the exhaust primaries through the opening in the side skin as per the manual using the order outlined. We then loosely attached them to the head being sure to put the gasket back in place first.

The Collector went on next. The best technique appearing to be a combination of wiggling and lightly tapping each of the primaries towards to the collector using a soft faced hammer. Eventually all 4 went together and then it was simply a case of using the retaining springs to keep them all in place.

We then fitted the exhaust bracket that locates just ahead of the rear wheel arch. A rubber 'bobbin' goes onto this bracket, its purpose being to support the exhaust silencer once that goes on. Again the guide was a little confusing at this point as it talks about adding a bracket to the top of the bobbin. we hunted for a while for this until it dawned on me that its was actually pre-welded to the exhaust silencer itself!

Radiator Top Hose

Last job for the day was to fit the radiator top hose to the engine. This was one of the jobs I'd intended to do ahead of the engines installation but we weren't exactly sure which pipe we were supposed to attach. A post on the lotus 7 club forums cleared that one up for me and I'm pleased to say we had the relevant hose.

The Illusive Large 'L Shaped' Top Radiator Hose
Good news was that this was relatively easy to fit with the engine in situ. Identifying which of the supplied jubilee clips was the correct one to use was again a pain due to poor labeling of parts (edit 28/8/13 - actually just look at the descriptions for each item in the fastening pack, this appears to be the only pack where items have descriptions of what they are used for). It's currently protruding out the front of the car awaiting its attachment to the radiator. I presume we are going to have to cut it down to size at some point as its protruding beyond the foremost chassis rail by a good 50 cm. Unless i've routed it wrong of course....

One thing I've also done (on the strength of a suggestion made by a fellow Caterham owner) is to loosen off most of the allen key bolts that fix the plate onto the top of the gearbox. I did this before the gearbox went in leaving the oil filler plug on the side of the gearbox (large allen key headed one) done up. The intention here is to avoid having to faff about cutting down an allen key to fit onto the drain plug, instead opting to fill the gearbox with oil through the top panel. Access is actually reasonably good from both ends with access down the transmission tunnel at one end (where the gear lever is) and from the engine bay at the other. When looking down through the cover from the engine bay, provided you use a torch you can actually see the backside of the drain hole so it should be relatively easy to fill it to the intended level. More on that one when I get round to it.

Access to gearbox top plate passed the gear lever

I also took a further measurement of the diff alignment as I'd been worried the day before that it might have been out by as much as half a centimeter. Measuring again today it looks more like 2-3 mm so hopefully within limits but I'll be sure double check with Caterham.

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