Tuesday 28 July 2015

Small Improvements

It’s been a while since I wrote anything on here, so here’s what’s been going on.

The car’s been on a couple of longish runs, the first to the castle coombe racing circuit. Yes I should’ve paid the extra & taken the car on the track, but I didn’t. This was the first time we’d seen Crunchie’s new toy, a 640-odd BHP Ultima. He said “I’m not taking it on the tack – I’ve only had it three days” ten minutes later I saw him returning with paperwork & a rented helmet. It certainly looked & sounded impressive out there, especially the flames when lifting off to change gear.

The journey there was a bit of a trudge as we were following a herd of tin-tops stuck behind a potato truck all across Salisbury Plain, on the way home the sky got darker & darker, eventually It started raining big lumps of rain like it does in summer, I stopped & put the roof up – which was pretty much exactly when the rain stopped.

A couple of weeks later we found ourselves driving the same roads as we headed to within five miles of Castle Coombe, to visit Nick Mason’s house. He was having an “open garden” day for charity & had parked a few million’s worth of cars on his lawn, A Ferrari 250, F40, Daytona & a new one that looked like it had been half crushed, a McLaren F1 & an Alfa. Various other interesting cars were parked up in nooks & crannies about the place & as is often the case at these things, the car park was almost as interesting as the event. As we arrived it had just started raining, so I put up the soft top & as ever – the rain stopped almost instantly. I should hire the car out for open air events.

On the engineering side, the car is still smoking if it sits idling for any time. I’m pretty sure this is because the valve stem oil seals dried out while the engine was sat in it’s crate. So it looks like I’ll be stripping the engine over the winter. On a more mundane note, I’ve changed the way the soft top attaches – again. It has been held to the screen arch by a couple of bike quick release fasteners, but they were fiddly & time consuming to do up & I was usually wet by the time I could get in the dry. So the QRs have gone, to be replaced by Dzus slide fasteners, in theory the front bar of the roof passes over two small bobbins & the slides hold it in place. Today I took it up to the National Speed Limit - & good news, I still own a soft-top, so it must be strong enough. I also fitted press studs to the top of the deflectors to help hold the roof in the right shape, only small improvements but now, that's all the car needs.