Sunday, July 31, 2005

I finally managed to get the threaded rods of the battery clamp off the spares car. The nut splitter made short work of those nuts. I used my tap and die set to clean up the threads and the wing nuts. I got the front tyres inflated to the correct pressure and I managed to make a start on removing the steering rack (I just unbolted the track rod ends) I also fired Baby Blue up just to keep the engine freed up. Posted by Picasa

I'm still having problems with the overheating! I was driving this morning when I noticed the temperature gauge go past halfway and then the heater went cold which pointed to an air lock. When I got home and let it cool I took the radiator cap off and noticed that some coolant had been lost. I know that the radiator is definitely not leaking. (it was brand new!) This also goes to show that it should've been checked weekly! I've topped it up and it seems all right now. I haven't checked the coolant level since I fitted the radiator 4 weeks ago. I'm bidding for another Acclaim on eBay at the moment. This one is a real beauty, is more or less rust free and has been very well looked after. Well worth buying (if I win the auction! Posted by Picasa

Saturday, July 30, 2005

Not done much

It's been raining for most of the week so I haven't been able to get much done. I fitted the ignition leads and rotor arm on the Acclaim but the distributor cap wouldn't fit! The windscreen was leaking with all this heavy rain (must've been the remnants of the Birmingham tornado) because my handbook got wet when it was in the car. I'm now bidding for another Acclaim on eBay. I just hope that I win this one because it is a real beauty! I've spoken to the seller and the car's been looked after.
I fell that things on Baby Blue are being held up buy the welding that's needed. I'm still looking at buying a welder but the Acclaims are my first priority. Once the boot floor's been done I can fit the petrol tank and connect the fuel lines. No more of that petrol can! And while I'm at it I should put the spares car back together once I've done the steering rack and column. I've too many spare parts all dumped on the back seat and in the boot of Baby Blue. I don't think I can rob much else off the spares car and it will be next once Baby Blue is on the road.
I'm thinking of selling the Toledo. Being stuck on a pub car park isn't the best place for it and I don't have the time with everything else that's going on.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

More stuff for the Acclaim

The ignition leads I bought on eBay came in the post today. I also bought a new rotor arm so I can fit the along with that distributor cap I've had kicking about for a while (another eBay purchase) I tried to fit them but I don't have the tools so that job will have to wait until I go up to Baby Blue because I keep most of my tools in her boot. I bought a nut splitter the other day in my local Halfords to remove the threaded rods for the battery clamp from the spares car. I can easily replace the nuts.

Monday, July 25, 2005

The steering column is now ready to go in the car. I shall leave it until I get round to changing the rack. I'm also thinking of replacing the coupling. Jigsaw do a coupling for the Dolomite which should fit Baby Blue and it is supposed to improve the steering. I also want to fit some poly steering rack bushes. I know that Chris Witor sells these for the Dolomite and I think that they'll fit as well. The wheel swap has been completed and I made sure that the tyres had enough air in them before I fitted the wheels. (I don't know why I didn't think of it when I swapped the fronts!)  Posted by Picasa

Indicator stalk

I'vw now got myself an indicator stalk but when I compared it to my original I found out that the wires and plug are different so I'll have to cannibalise my old wiring swapping the wires over one-by-one, a pig of a job but do-able and when done it will work. I think that Triumph changed things slightly during the prouction run of the Dolomite as my replacement stalk came out of a later Dolomite. Once it's fitted I can assemble the steering column and it will be ready to go back in once I've fitted the replacement steering rack. I'll also see if I can finish the wheel swap.

Monday, July 18, 2005

The front seat head restraints came in the post today and I fitted them straight away and I think it has improved the car. The latest eBay bargain at 99p (plus a tenner for postage & packing but good value anyway) Once I've got that cambelt change done that's more or less it for anything major. Posted by Picasa

Sunday, July 17, 2005

At last I did it! I've now got my indicator switch off. I managed to remove the adjustable clamp and it was plain sailing after that. I did a bit of sanding down on the paaintwork and went over it with the last of my aerosol primer. Posted by Picasa

Saturday, July 16, 2005

Well I got the brake pipe sorted out. It only cost me a pound to have a new pipe made up at my local motor factor. After fitting the pipe I then fitted the wheels that came off the spares car. I noticed that one of them had a Firestone tyre. I knew the spares car had better tyres than Baby Blue. I also treated her to a paint job. Just an aerosol of blue paint to cover all the grey primer. I thought that Olympic Blue (that's what it said on the tin) would be a close match for French Blue but it wasn't. It doesn't matter because I can go over it again with the right colour and it's better to have too much paint than not enough. Anyway she looks better for it as you can see in the pic. Looks nice with those Sprint seats! Posted by Picasa

Wheel swap

Taken the front wheels off Baby Blue and put them on the spares car. The tyres on the front wheels off the spares car are better than the ones off Baby Blue and they're in the boot of the Acclaim at the moment. I've had to come home to write this and when I've done I'll got back to Baby Blue to fit the front wheels and then I can do it all over again with the back wheels. I'll also need to sort out that section of brake pipe as well.

Friday, July 15, 2005

Triumph addict!

I missed out on the silver Acclaim CD on eBay. I was outbid in the dying seconds but the limit I'd set myself had been exceeded so I let it go...
There was another nice HLS in metallic bronze which looks like a beauty. The pics didn't seem to do it justice and by the item description it seems to have been well looked after. I'm hoping to tempt the seller with cash as I have the money after being paid out for my Ford Mondeo when the insurnace wrote it off. I might not even get another Acclaim. I had a go in a Dolomite 1850HL and it was a beauty! I'd love one! (or a Sprint if I could afford it! The 1850HL is the next best thing.)
I wasted an hour last night trying to dismantle the steering column which I need to do if I'm to fit a replacement indicator switch. If only I could get that blasted adjustment bracket off! There's a pin which I can't get out. Once that's out I'm there. How frustrating!
I had a go at changing the timing belt on the Acclaim but soon gave up. It is an absolute pig of a job and beyond me at the moment. On the plus side I was able to tension the alternator drive belt as it would slip now and again. One of the number plate bulbs failed so I robbed one off Baby Blue to get it working again. Did you know that in the UK it is illegal to have bulbs that aren't working even in daylight? It is also an MoT failure point.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Mot much doing at the moment

I received my new cambelt in the post today. Yesterday I won a pair of front seat head restraints on eBay for only 99p! I'm thinking about replacing the Acclaim with a better one. There's 3 nice ones on eBay at the moment. I put in a bid for a Silver CD and was immediately outbid. I might put in a higher bid but I'd better get my skates on because the auction for this one ends in less than 2 hours (the the time of writing)
Baby Blue needs a new brake pipe from the flexi hose to the caliper as the thread on the caliper end of the pipe is stripped. Not a big job really. Still got the wheel swap to do and the cooling system to flush. I'd better start her up as well.
I don't think that there's much more I can rob off the spares car. The nuts at the bottom of the battery clamp threads won't budge so I'm thinking of using a nut splitter to get them out. I can easily replace nuts and its one thing less to fail the MoT!

Sunday, July 10, 2005

A bit of progress was made.

I went to the spares car and got the steering rack and brake caliper. I could only get the front section of the exhaust. I'd also noticed that the tyres on the spares car look to be in better condition than Baby Blue's. The middle and rear sections wouldn't separate despite my best efforts with the 2lb lump hammer and a couple of screwdrivers. I fitted the brake caliper on Baby Blue but the section of pipe that immediately joins to the caliper sheared. Fortunately I'd clamped the flexible hose with my Mole grips so there was virtually no fluid loss and the same part on the spares car is in good condition and can be used. I've not had to spend any money on any parts for Baby Blue but I'm sure that this state of affairs won't carry on for much longer.

Saturday, July 09, 2005

Lovely day... get some more work done. Bent the key for the Acclaim so I'll have to get a new one cut. As it is now weakened it's only a matter of time before it breaks so I'll pop down town to the local Timpson and get a couple more cut. I'll be going back to the spares car to rob some more bits off it that I need. I'm debating over whether to just replace the gaiters and track rod ends on the steering rack on Baby Blue or swap the rack with the one off the spares car. I'll also be getting the exhaust and one of the front brake calipers as well. I'm planning on flushing the radiator and refilling with fresh coolant. (I've got some antifreeze left which I can put to good use)

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Good news

I managed to get the radiator road tested when I went down to the South Yorkshire meeting last night. Even though I was doing speeds of up to 80mph (in the rain!) the temperature gauge remained constant at the 1/3 mark and the heaters were giving out heat so I believe that the cooling system is now 100% I've got my West Yorkshire meeting tonight. I hope the attendance is better than the last one and the weather had better be nice for my little 15 mile run.

Monday, July 04, 2005

And here's what it looks like in the car. I got round to fitting the new radiator in the Acclaim. I also took the opprotunity to flush the engine block. I also tried the get the heater matrix flushed but the hoses just wouldn't budge! Anyway she's running a lot better with the new radiator and Barry can have his "loan" radiator back. That was the best �25 I ever spent on a radiator. Yet another of my eBay bargains! Posted by Picasa

...and in with the new. Posted by Picasa

Out witrh the old... Posted by Picasa

Saturday, July 02, 2005

Got my finger out at last

I finally went down to the spares car and got some more much-needed bit off it. I removed the steering column, petrol tank, the number plate lights, the passenger door lock and er, that's it. I wish I'd brought my trolley jack and axle stands otherwise I'd have had the exhaust and the steering rack as well. I'll defintiely get them next time. I don't think there's much left for me to salvage apart from the doors, glass, bonnet and bootlid. I also noticed that one of the brake calipers looks brand new. Just what Baby Blue needs. Talking of which, I fitted the passenger door lock, number plate ligts (and associated wiring) and the cig lighter. Once I've fitted the steering column I will have keys for Baby Blue!

On the Acclaim front the new radiator has now arrived and will be fitted as soon as possible. I went out to the car to check where the fittings go and I noticed a slight leak which was confirmed when I took the cap off so I topped up with water. It will do until I fit the radiator. I wonder if that's why the Acclaim was running hot recently.