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Spitfire Total Rebuild!

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  • Registered Users Posts: 21,805 ✭✭✭✭ endacl


    I would have liked to put the windows back in, but, to do it correct you'd need to joggle the edges of the window to add strenght; I dont have a joggler (although if I were to start the project again, for the sake of €50 or so I would have bought one).
    Things I learned today:

    (1) There's such a thing as 'joggling'.
    (2) To 'joggle', one needs a device, referred to by those who know, as a 'joggler'.

    Love this thread!

    :D


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,358 ✭✭✭ kev1.3s


    endacl wrote: »
    Things I learned today:

    (1) There's such a thing as 'joggling'.
    (2) To 'joggle', one needs a device, referred to by those who know, as a 'joggler'.

    Love this thread!

    :D

    I always taught it was juggling whilst running;)


  • Registered Users Posts: 21,805 ✭✭✭✭ endacl


    kev1.3s wrote: »
    I always taught it was juggling whilst running;)
    No, no, no.... You've got it all wrong. Its running whilst juggling.

    :p


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,394 ✭✭✭ SpitfireIV


    Smart asses! :p

    Joggle.jpeg

    Not as easy as it looks! :D


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,574 dharn


    Come on croppy, get back on track, cant wait for the next instalment :D


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  • Registered Users Posts: 4,358 ✭✭✭ kev1.3s


    Yeah come on croppy, jog on.


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,394 ✭✭✭ SpitfireIV


    Okay okay....... :P


    Right, well, next up was to remove the lower A post section, which, truth be told was salvageable but, as I had an almost new section in the donor car I decided to remove the old one rather than try patch it. So, it was out with the spot weld drill bit again!


    10257903_10154144219825591_490473767696976962_o.jpg
    ^ Very handy little drill bit!!


    10272518_10154192027695591_6830542419653661867_o.jpg
    ^ Making a new repair section.....


    10362800_10154192027690591_4591705766029308928_o.jpg
    ^ The lower A post repair section in place and now trial fitting the angle repair section. Also note that by this stage the tub was giving a rough sanding in bare metal/rusty areas and a couple of quick sprays of rust primer to hold off the tin worm for a little while longer.


    10344305_10154192027745591_4144128538865921156_o.jpg
    ^ Cut to shape (even with the recess replicated; you'll like that dharn! :P )


    10383736_10154192027975591_1478669562086676664_o.jpg
    ^ Tacked into place.


    10359111_10154192027845591_4801576172334210186_o.jpg
    ^ Little repair/patch on the inside floorpan; it'll be cleaned down.


    10450031_10154286152900591_1411581176574893608_o.jpg
    ^ Somewhat limited access. The welder welding the floorpan to the new lower A post section and tying the A post upper and lower sections.


    10256626_10154192027940591_7663902060261810990_o.jpg
    ^ Door back on and jobs a good 'un!




    Next time we'll be constructing a DIY wheelarch section to replace this...! :eek:
    10338421_10154144219815591_8634470132702526687_o.jpg


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,574 dharn


    Those recesses are very important croppy !, is that ordinary galvanised flat sheeting you are using, I find that very hard to bend it seems very springy and hard , is the stuff car panels made from more malleable ?


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,394 ✭✭✭ SpitfireIV


    dharn wrote: »
    Those recesses are very important croppy !, is that ordinary galvanised flat sheeting you are using, I find that very hard to bend it seems very springy and hard , is the stuff car panels made from more malleable ?

    This isnt really galvanised, just has a dusting of zinc on it, but, otherwise its easy to work/fold/bend. Its a shade over 1mm, the car panels themselves are made of 1mm. Not sure what grade of steel it is, I did enquire prior to starting the project at a local steel suppliers to see if they sold 1mm, they said they only had it in galvanised and it was hard stuff to work, that I'd need 1mm cold rolled steel which they didnt supply. I was just lucky to come across a few small sheets, that I'm currently using, through the neighbour.


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,394 ✭✭✭ SpitfireIV


    Ok, arch repair; the one I had been dreading and putting on the long finger, but, it had to be done! Now, naturally I didnt wanna spend big bucks on replacement repair sections when I could have a go myself, right?


    http://www.rimmerbros.co.uk/Item--i-RB7365

    The bones of €150! no thanks! :pac:



    So, picked up a €5 sheet of light card and set about making up templates!



    1614150_10154144219840591_2818281638053242036_o.jpg
    ^ Time for this guy to bite the dust!


    1498919_10154144220045591_3040048542232786635_o.jpg
    ^ Marking up a template. I decided to make it in two halves for convinience.




    10293719_10154144220345591_2311987746824172854_o.jpg
    10273255_10154144220320591_310807916874767048_o.jpg
    ^ New section cut as per the template. You'll also notice the bad metal has been cut from the arch leaving just a 15mm lip to which the new pieces can be spotwelded too and will also give a rough idea of the angle.


    10322494_10154144220425591_7697008833244535647_n.jpg?oh=0e24cf1b550aa51bba1acec6858eadf8&oe=5436AF17
    ^ Must have been very busy by this stage as I'm lacking pics, but, essentially the same thing was done for the rear of the arch. A template was made, bad metal cut, new piece fitted and spotwelded into place.


    10397831_10154144220485591_1638416900733694715_n.jpg
    ^ A strenghtening rib was adding on the top of the arch. This new section would now have to be levelled off and cut stright on the front face before recieving the next section.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 4,358 ✭✭✭ kev1.3s


    That's absolutely excellent work there, there's no reason you shoul dread any part of the metal fabrication


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,394 ✭✭✭ SpitfireIV


    Cheers Kev! ;)



    Update to thread may be getting few now as I'm getting closer to the current state of the build; and, at the moment it just seems to be a relentless amount of panel fitting, panel removal, panel modification....panel fitting, panel removal, panel modification....etc etc.......you get the idea!





    10431362_10154192027760591_6366002761265890377_o.jpg
    ^ So anyway, a replacement panel was cut, fitted and tacked in place in the rear inner wing/boot section; bumper iron bracket to be fitted later.




    10259051_10154192028685591_6688457819210578323_o.jpg
    ^ Another two lips were added to the diy inner wing, bit fiddly them are they are quite thin and narrow, so, a few metal tabs were spot welded around the inside of the arch first and then used to temporarily hold the new pieces in place. Dont have any decent pics, but, here she is (upside down).




    10269278_10154192028400591_9210659715135684761_o.jpg
    ^ So with the wheel arch just needed a proper weld job I got round to sorting the passagenger side floor strenghtner which I had folded up earlier.




    10397268_10154192028490591_64598858184754743_o.jpg
    ^ The original had recessed holes at angles through which bolts pass into the chassis underneath. These holes had to be in the right place and at the correct angle, so, I just cut out the particular section from the old one and reused it. Here it is being lined up and the bolts in place.

    Dont have a pic of it finished to hand at the mo, but the original section was flush welded into the new floor strenghtner and ground down and smoothed off! Came out perfect (take my word for it!! :p)


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,394 ✭✭✭ SpitfireIV


    Ok, here I am, havent forgot about you lot, just been busy! :D



    Right, well, as you seen in the previous posts I now had the most of the internal panels sorted! New mid sills (and one inner) made and fitted, arches repaired, so, now it was time to get a bonnet to use for panel alignment purposes, and start having a look at the external panels!


    10286767_10154233197160591_5041870874235858646_o.jpg
    ^ Spare bonnet fitted. Curiousity got the better of me so I clamped on the sill and rear wing and put two wheel on also.



    10448517_10154233197170591_6725967483467312468_o.jpg
    ^ View from the rear. Also note the hardtop had been cleaned back to bare metal and rust primed by this stage.



    10452953_10154233196945591_5743082141770428656_o.jpg
    ^ Cleaned a large quantity of filler off the bonnet arches and this was what lay underneath! :rolleyes: Someone went to a lot of effort, but, could have tried a little harder. Just as well this is only a temporary bonnet eh.


    10380606_10154286152980591_8600884746718263081_o.jpg
    ^ The Spitfire, even though it sits on a (modified Herald) chassis, requires structural support from its sills. Its a known weak point with them, they can rust at the sills (as I've seen) and the body can flex or even fold! Thus we figured, even with the good work that we had done on the sills, that adding extra strenght in the form of 40mm box section surely would hurt!



    10513344_10154286154010591_7257332204211040264_n.jpg?oh=b8d306d5cfc07eeeabdca2641be65be6&oe=54415182&__gda__=1413633495_733a867b178bfe89e4702522f16f2163
    ^ Theres no point simply welding a length of box to the mid sill, for it to be effective it has to be tied back into fixing/structural points in the car, hence, the two out riggers seen on the strengthening frame above.


    1529912_10154286153480591_242520806386076331_o.jpg
    ^ This view shows the angle of the box section to accommodate the angle of the mid sill compared to the outriggers which are parallel with the floor.



    10511564_10154286154085591_3818941414390134525_o.jpg
    ^ The out rigger to the rear would be tied into the rear link bar mounting bracket.


    10463824_10154286153495591_3210904807319407737_o.jpg
    ^ Out rigger to the front/mid would, like the rear one, go through the mid and inner sill and in this instance be attached to the floorpan cross member, near to a chassis mounting point.




    10507044_10154286152810591_4981460515908060739_o.jpg
    ^ Obviously, as mentioned, to fit this frame meant cutting through the sills and as such a little bit of strenght would be lost, but, we figured for the amount that was going to be lost a lot more would be gained once it was in place and welded up good an' proper!




    10431394_10154286154090591_6998441240901113499_o.jpg
    ^ Box section welded to mid sill and out rigger tacked onto floor crossmember.



    10476380_10154286154060591_3884772927123790969_o.jpg
    ^ Welded up and given a coat of rust primer.




    Now, hope the wait was worth it for you lot! :D


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,394 ✭✭✭ SpitfireIV


    Now for something a little different..........



    I'm not overly fond of the Spitty's rear lights! :o They always looked to me like a bit of an after thought; flat and bland....

    44883a.jpg
    (image taken from google)



    I decided I'd try something different, so, I picked up a set of Land Rover lights to see how they'd look.....


    10476334_10154282165150591_5382615824428823160_o.jpg

    10453027_10154282165195591_6932043554953034322_o.jpg

    10497922_10154282165205591_4977453017864471148_o.jpg


    Now, at first I did like them but then I figured they were a bit on the small side and not very interesting! Would have liked a chrome bezel or such. So, decided I wouldnt use the Landie lights but instead will go for slightly larger round Lucas lights with a chrome base....

    170511_med.jpg
    171011_med.jpg

    Combined with one of these....
    175005_med.jpg


    So the arrangement across the back light panel, left to right will be: Indicator-Stop/Tail--Reflector---Licence Plate---Reflector--Stop/Tail-Indicator. A separate reverse light will be fixed to the bumper.

    I hope to make a raised plinth/base to attach the indicator/stop lights on rather than have them plonked on a flat panel; watch this space......


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,358 ✭✭✭ kev1.3s


    I always taught the earlier spitfire rear end was prettier but I think it'll be difficult to change it without looking a bit kit car like. I'll watch with interest to see how you get on.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,259 ✭✭✭ sogood


    I agree and imagine that the tendency to use the same lights on lots of different models of older English cars is a short cut that sacrifices a better appearance for the sake of economics. I think the rear lights featured on the Spitfire are the same lights that you'll find on the Triumph 2000 and possibly the Stag also. Maybe even the TR6. And the little round marker/indicator lights show up on Minis and Minors. The list is endless.

    And I agree that something a little bigger than the Landy lights would be nicer. BTW, still following this thread with great interest and admiration and perhaps you could advise on the following. When welding bodywork/panels, would an arc welder be as effective as a mig/tig welder, or would it generate more heat, with the attendant risk of causing warping? Thanks and keep up the excellent work.


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,394 ✭✭✭ SpitfireIV


    sogood wrote: »
    I agree and imagine that the tendency to use the same lights on lots of different models of older English cars is a short cut that sacrifices a better appearance for the sake of economics. I think the rear lights featured on the Spitfire are the same lights that you'll find on the Triumph 2000 and possibly the Stag also. Maybe even the TR6. And the little round marker/indicator lights show up on Minis and Minors. The list is endless.

    And I agree that something a little bigger than the Landy lights would be nicer. BTW, still following this thread with great interest and admiration and perhaps you could advise on the following. When welding bodywork/panels, would an arc welder be as effective as a mig/tig welder, or would it generate more heat, with the attendant risk of causing warping? Thanks and keep up the excellent work.

    You are correct sogood, a lot of fixtures and fittings were used throughout the British Leyland range, Lucas supplied the majority of the electrics and lenses etc. I think this particular arrangement the indicator lens and the chrome plinth they are mounted on is unique to the MkIV/1500 Spitfire, however, the rear light lenses are all locked together with, like a sliding dovetail joint so the other lenses, as you say would have been used on the other Triumph cars of the period.


    The landy lights are only 74mm in diameter, I hope to get the slightly larger 84mm with the chrome plinth. These particular lights would have been used on Imp's and I hope to, like to the Imp pictured below, make a slightly raised plinth on which both the lights can sit on (side by side) just to create a bit of interest and try not have it too 'kit car' looking :p


    Erics+new+Imp+paint+job+006.jpg



    As for the welding; I dont think an arch welder is up to the job; last time one was used on this project was to weld up the heavy frame for the rotisserie. With the panels being so thin we're using a MIG welder with .8 wire I believe, to get cleaner/finer welds I think .6 is recommended, but, I leave the welding to the neighbour, he's a master at it! I can just about manage an arch welder!

    Panel distortion is an issue though, so you have to do it in stages or small bits at a time.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,259 ✭✭✭ sogood


    Thanks for the input. I have an arc welder that I have achieved decent results with, but figured that it might be a bit "heavy duty" for panel repairs.

    Anyway, keep up the good work! It's inspirational!!


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,574 dharn


    Whats the lightest rods that can be got for an arc welder ? 1.5 they would burn through those panels


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,394 ✭✭✭ SpitfireIV


    Hokey Dokey......



    So with the extra strengthening (in the form of 40mm box) added to the driver side it was now time to sort the rear wing and sills, get them in shape and stick em on!

    For this you will need -

    - Self tapper screws (dozen, approx)
    - Welding clamps (as many as you can beg borrow or steal!)
    - Two sets of hand (or, failing that, a helper)
    - Angle grinder, snips, cutting and grinding disks
    - A s&^t load of patience
    - Lots of time!



    10454072_10154286154185591_6250797540243290710_o.jpg
    ^ Driver side with reinforcing added. All rust primed and after the pic was taken all welds/seams/joints were given a coating of Dinitrol seam sealer.


    Now, the sills, as I mentioned in an earlier thread were relatively new, they were attached to the current front half of the tub I'm currently using but were put on badly (both in fit and attachment!) not to mention the mid sills were rotten so they needed to be accessed! Thus, the sills had be be removed as carefully as possible, however, its not so easy when youre dealing with large puddle welds and seam welds :rolleyes: so, the sills didnt come off as easily as I would have hoped, but, they came off regardless!!

    The abuse they got when being put on originally (evident by the amount of filler!) and the bit of abuse they got when being removed meant they were a little out of shape, so, the best thing for it was to make up a form over which they could be tested for correct shape and tapped back into shape if needs be.........which was, unfortunately the case :rolleyes:


    1556358_10154286154150591_7069769419942728354_o.jpg
    ^ Hardwood formers made up, both internal and external.


    This stage of the build took a lot of time (and patience.....even if it did wear thin at times!). I also only came to realise at this stage that these patent panels are not made to original specs and do require some surgery in order to get them to fit correctly; so, essentially, its really up to the individual and the individual car as to what alterations are needed to make it fit; bit of a head ache really. Hence it was a case of clamping/screwing the panel on, checking it over, taking it off and making adjustments....clamping/screwing the panel on, checking it over, taking it off and making adjustments....etc etc.



    10463609_10154286152850591_1809326289170251971_o.jpg
    ^ Starting to take shape! Its the gaps around the door that you have to watch out for, as well as the line where the bonnet meets the sill; gotta be even and straight!


    10506921_10154286154070591_3870489029003046827_o.jpg
    ^ Again, gradually getting there. You'll notice the joint where the sill meets the rear wing panel needs to be tightened up. This joint is supposed to remain unwelded to allow flex, but, as I have hopefully more or less removed the flex with the strengthening bars this joint will be welded up.


    10348729_10154286154040591_8647426192365520132_o.jpg
    10456006_10154286154130591_2567366644049226826_n.jpg
    ^ Not ging to get much better really! The reshaping and panel beating of the sills was beginning to stretch the lower portion of the sill causing a bit of a 'belly', but, it looks good enough, tight enough door gap and a good flow off the door onto the sill. You might notice the very front of the sill under the bonnet, the gap looks off, thats just because the panels still needed to be pushed down and clamped, but, its good! :)

    The seam on the bottom looks a bit wibbly wobbly. After its spotwelded on that can be levelled off and cleaned up.


    10256410_10154384675970591_3142467604822597107_o.jpg
    ^ Spot welded in place!! :)


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  • Registered Users Posts: 2,574 dharn


    Brilliant work id say your shut lines, and panel lines will be better than when it was new,


  • Registered Users Posts: 21,805 ✭✭✭✭ endacl


    Just out of interest, would it not have been handier to just download a blueprint, buy a load of sheet metal, and just build a car from scratch?!?

    :p

    Great thread.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,574 dharn


    A spitfire ,or just any oul car ?:confused:


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,394 ✭✭✭ SpitfireIV


    dharn wrote: »
    Brilliant work id say your shut lines, and panel lines will be better than when it was new,


    They look better in the pics then they really are! They're a pain to get right and have been told numerous times that its near impossible to do on a car that came out of the factory with bad lines/gaps to begin with!! :rolleyes:


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,394 ✭✭✭ SpitfireIV


    endacl wrote: »
    Just out of interest, would it not have been handier to just download a blueprint, buy a load of sheet metal, and just build a car from scratch?!?

    :p

    Great thread.


    Had crossed my mind once or twice alright yeah! :P In fairness though, if I did try I'd only end up with something like this....

    marijnvanderpoll.modular.jpg

    :P


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,259 ✭✭✭ sogood


    Hi croppy. No wish to hijack your excellent thread, but hoped you might be able to give me a little advice. As previously mentioned, I have a small arc welder, which I suspected might be a bit heavy duty for panel welding. This was indeed confirmed, so, any recommendations on a hobby type mig welder and what would be an acceptable amperage rating for welding up to about 4mm.
    I've seen gas/gasless models advertised, using cored wire etc. Any thoughts on this approach?

    Any thoughts or info much appreciated and keep up the great work.


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,394 ✭✭✭ SpitfireIV


    sogood wrote: »
    Hi croppy. No wish to hijack your excellent thread, but hoped you might be able to give me a little advice. As previously mentioned, I have a small arc welder, which I suspected might be a bit heavy duty for panel welding. This was indeed confirmed, so, any recommendations on a hobby type mig welder and what would be an acceptable amperage rating for welding up to about 4mm.
    I've seen gas/gasless models advertised, using cored wire etc. Any thoughts on this approach?

    Any thoughts or info much appreciated and keep up the great work.

    Hi sogood, sorry about the long wait. I'm afraid I'm not much help to you with regard welding. I know the neighbour thats helping me has two migs, a small and large but I couldnt event tell you the pro's and con's of both, their power ratings, etc etc. I just do the donkey work and let the expert take care of the welding. But, I'll be sure to ask! :)


    Now, you'll probably notice the ol' updates are slowing down, well, thats because I'm just about up to speed here with the progress so they definately wont be as open, but, never the less, the show goes on........


    In this update we'll be looking at the passenger side of the car, getting the sill and wing on and tackling the lack of the major panel work, ie the boot floor and rear valance.



    If you remember previously a strenghtening frame was made up and attached to the driver side, well, a similar set up was made and added to the passenger side and welded in place....

    10358917_10154384676530591_8075221096409931137_o.jpg
    ^ Box section added to passenger side and given a coat of rust pimer.


    10547423_10154384676220591_2972654955041005896_n.jpg
    ^ Sparks flying at night, the box section being welded in.



    1512237_10154384676535591_4963300206783858569_o.jpg
    ^ Welded in, cleaned up and rust proofed, ready to recieve the sill now!



    If you recall my previous post about the trouble I had reshaping the driver side sill and having to make up formers to knock it back into shape, well, those same formers didnt seem to fit properly into the passenger side sill! Thats the problem with a lot of these patent parts and different manufacturers, a lot of variance in measurements and tolerances! Headache...


    10518846_10154384676275591_7719754106808583451_o.jpg
    ^ Passenger sill knocked into shape and given an extra layer of rust proofing on the lower edges before having the seam flanges cleaned back to bare metal for the spot welder.


    10544361_10154384676520591_1952551114328801174_n.jpg?oh=54d2379e143f44410aa4dffbe39da6d0&oe=546E2571
    ^ Passenger wing rust proofed and the flanges cleaned back to bear metal and then it was read to go onto.........


    10506999_10154384676325591_9040507004298873121_o.jpg
    ^....this! Which, as you can see has also been cleaned back ready for fitting and spot welding.



    10577088_10154384676215591_4012930702794882098_n.jpg
    ^ If you can remember back earlier when I had to repair the 'new' driver side floorpan which had been attacked all 'chainsaw massacre' style by someone with an angle grinder. They had cut through the new rear wing and across the floor. I actually did have the piece put aside but I couldnt locate it, thus, I had to make up some kind of a filler piece.




    10553782_10154384676075591_7997404810117743647_o.jpg
    ^ Filler piece made from a piece of old sill, spotted to another piece of old sill which allowed for an overlap between the rest of the sill and the rear wing!



    10494961_10154384676895591_1651252298536004824_o.jpg
    ^ As good as it gets really. The ol' Triumphs are notroiously hard to get the panel gaps good or the doors sitting correctly! Its not bad. Disregard the bonnet here, it had dropped a little.



    10400876_10154384676510591_5284631708530611811_n.jpg
    ^ Threw on a bit of trim on the rear wing just for a look-see! :D



    Next up is the rear valance, boot floor and driver rear wing; the last of the major panel work!!!


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,259 ✭✭✭ sogood


    Hi croppy and thanks for the response. I have since gotten a small mig welder and am experimenting with it, getting a feel for it and its' operation.

    So far sogood, although I'm nowhere near ready to start any actual work on the car, still finishing off another project. So many restos, so little time.......

    And of course, keep up the good work!


  • Registered Users Posts: 4,893 ✭✭✭ Bigus


    Whats the rear light plan , I think you should keep them original, but if you're going twin light conversion are there any Ferrari ish retro LED light available instead of the imp type lights ?


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