Rebuild

Following the altercation with huge lego blocks, a pile of straw bales and the concrete posted perimeter fence at the Aintree Sprint on Saturday June 30th. parts of my Mog need a facelift. This was way back in 2012…. work on the car is still not finished… mechanically fine, but still cosmetically challenged in places!

Working on a new cowl, thinking the one on the car is too out of shape. I was given a steel cowl from a 4 seater, now a racer, thanks John, and have cut a sliver out.

It’s a start. Now trying to find my box of G clamps so I can tack it together.

back to the story from a while ago……..

Phil has had the car for a couple of weeks, in what is known by some of his customers as “death corner”  He has found a few things, which of course was the point of taking it to him, a complete nuts and bolts check. One of the kingpins was not tightened for instance. We found out that the replacement crossframe was an  inch narrower, which is why the track control arm was too long. That has now been rectified, and it should not be long now, before it is ready for an MOT test. I am getting quite excited. and fed up of my pals laughing at my other vehicle when we meet for piesandpints.

Thursday 31st January 2013, I take the Mog to Phil Barrett’s, and post this on the Mog chat rooms

There might be whooping and hollering heard in Unstone Green later today, or sighs of despair! I am just about to take my Mog for a nuts and bolts check and MOT, 7 months just about to the day since it fell at Beechers Brook. Wish me luck!

and received some really nice replies: thank you all.

M’Lud

All appendages knotted and crossed for you here inHibernia

Plus Faw

 

Crossed here. Good luck.
Kind Regards,

Paul

 

……..and here

David

 

 

I am sure that fingers do not to be crossed, but good luck anyway Richard!

Colin  Mackay

 

>>> look forward to seeing you back on the road

The word road being key in this sentiment   ;-)

Best regards
Paul

 

Everything crossed Richard – look forward to seeing you back on the road.
Roger

 

And here  (currentlyS Africa)

Mike & Allyson

PS IS THE HOOD PART OF THE NUTS AND BOLTS CHECK.??

 

Good luck, RIchard…….

Rob

 

Hope all goes well. I’m sure it will!

Bill

 

Everything crossed XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX
Good Luck
Derek

 

All the best M’Lud,

Cheers,

JP

 

I know one lose nut that needs looking into :-)

STOP PRESS!!!!  Nearly there!

Competition Time for my band of followers

First, thank you all for keeping an eye open here, and for all your nice comments. So, as a reward, to the first all correct entry received, there will be a valuable prize.

Ok, the question:

What are all these bits, and where should they go?

( I know what two of the bits are)

setback: the despondent stage: Sunday 27th Jan, 4 days before the MOT

I spoke to one of my Gurus (Colin) the other day. He told me that the last 20% took 80% of the time! So, with more or less just the brakelights to wire, I set to this morning. Quickly identified the live going to the brakelight switch, and the feed to the lights. So, with my current tester clipped to earth, the live was, well: the live. Yet when I connected the tester to the earth, from the live, nowt. So, a mug of coffee, kick the cat… suddenly it dawns! Of course the tester light will not illuminate, the brakelights need to be connected to complete the circuit! Duuurrrrr! Off to the garage again with renewed confidence!

…………… 3 hours later…. “I HATE ELECTRICS!!!!”

got one brake light working, don’t know why the other one won’t, cant see where to plug the number plate light in…. no space, my back aches, knee clicks, tennis and golf elbow in the same elbow…. at least both doors and door mirrors are on now, and they open and close just fine.

 

Sunday afternoon, 4pm, nearside tail light, reversing light, fog light and brake lights to connect, and doors to put on. Seat belts in, windscreen and wipers on, just found out the nearside main beam and dipped are crossed over, a minor hiccup. Bit of an exhaust blow between the manifold and cat, just needs the bolts freeing off and tightening. Getting ready for a drive around, but snow is forecast.

I would like to thank most sincerely, a bunch of mates who are helping me get the car back together: Tim Harrison, who has supplied a replacement crossframe and lots of bits and pieces, and is straightening out lots of parts, Phil Barrett who is my principal chassis advisor, and pops in from time to time to make sure things are right, and the  FriPie club: Colin Jones, Tim Harris, Rob Heap and John Porter, who gently persuaded me that a major rebuild was necessary, when I was trying to assure them that it perhaps wasn’t that badly bent. Their common sense over-ruled my misplaced optimism!

And a big Thank You to all of you out there who are keeping an eye on my rebuild by looking here and telling me, I really do appreciate it.

*****LATEST!!!!****

MOG SEES THE LIGHT OF DAY: EXCLUSIVE!!

The excited and expectant crowd cheered and waved flags as my trusty Landie ceremoniously towed Mog from its hideyhole for the last six months onto the drive, on a glorious bright January morning

its new bodyfiller glistening in the morning sunshine

a nearby squirrel was not impressed and carried on munching his snack, cruelly stolen from the birds the food was meant for

Colin and Rob arrived to help: these are Robs pics.

so, engine now running. new clutch adjusted, we can drive it in and out of the garage: a bit more space to work on the car when it’s on the drive.

29th  December, six months to the day…..

this is the new colour for the grille: yellow!

and this is it: all the wings are on, the hoses are all fitted, new oil and filter, needs water in the rad and wiring. Simples!! HELP!!!! * I have spent half an hour with handscrubs cleaning the ends of the wires so I can see what colour the wires are.

28th December; just about 6 months to the day that the car changed shape! Now, it looks like a Mog again, albeit a bit battered looking! The wings are on, the back number plate thingy is on, the radiator is on, even the alternator heat shield! Just needs the cowl and bonnet, and wiring up. Oh, I need the bits of metal that hold the headlamp unit in.

Some may say it has been cobbled together, and who am I to argue? One day, maybe when it gets warmer, I will whip the wings off, and give it a respray. That needs warm weather though (or a warm garage!)

So, a few hours more work, and we might be able to wizz up and down the drive.

22nd December alternator on, with a slightly longer fan belt. Trouble is, cannot see how to refit the heat   shield! Looks like the new alternator is bigger! Pressure tested the radiator, seems ok, so that was fitted. Started to bolt the front wings on, bending the inner wing to line the holes up! the hassle now is there is much less room in the garage. I think the next job is to wire up the engine, so I can pull it out of the garage onto the drive. Need better weather though. Tim Harris phoned, agrees that the heat shield should bolt on to the two top engine mount to block bolts. Brian from Spotmog e mails to suggest fabricating a new one. Think that is the way to go, thanks guys.  Ho hum, soon be Christmas!

20th December. I had a day off work today, so planned to spend it on the car. However plans did not go all my way, it has poured with rain and I spent quite a while trying to have next door’s culvert unblocked before disaster loomed again.

Still, Phil Barrett arrived, and we sorted out lots, so all in all, not a bad day.

2nd December

Now, where did I put the exhaust manifold, and what does the alternator adjuster bar bolt on to? * The front panel is only temporary, it needs to be painted first.

Friday 30th November: TubOn day!!

Colin, Rob and Dave arrived, on a freezing cold day, in their Mogs, not a hood in sight, to help me, along with son James, to put the tub back on. The whole job took less than half an hour, so we locked the garage and headed off to the Three Tuns for a well deserved pint and superb steak and ale pie.

Bonfire Night!

 

Sunday 4th November

how good is this then?

and these:

which have been only primed and roughly straightened. I will paint these black another time, probably in a week or so, when I will have a rolling chassis, and room in the garage to start painting body panels.

Wednesday 31st October

collected the now really straight chassis from Kevin Vernon, who had drilled and bolted the crossframe on, and discovered that the offside lower suspension leg was bent. so it is all straight, and waiting to be painted. Incidentally, I had noted that the floorboards had previously been cut narrow, Kevin tells me that this is factory practice! Not on my rebuild it aint!

 

Thursday 25th October

Colin called today, the plan was to measure angles and things, then drill and bolt the crossframe, the first major step in the actual rebuild. After much measuring, levelling, packing, eating pies and drinking coffee, we decided that the chassis was, in Col’s words, ‘quarter of a bubble out’. So, a call to Kevin Vernon at Tudor Motors, got the chassis booked in for a Caroliner jobbie next week. Then, we can start to bolt things on!

do drop in next week for the next installment!

Sunday 14th October.

Floor progress!

these are Spiked T nuts!

Spot the difference between the two photos above: yes, one is new wood, but the difference is in the size!  Note how the ‘old’ floorboard did not rest on the chassis frame on the inboard side, neither did the matching floor panel on the driver’s side!

How much better from underneath, you can just see bolt heads, not protruding threads! Much neater. Concourse judges will be impressed!

the board for the fuel tank is made of two layers of 12mm ply bonded together. Again, it is T nutted into the chassis.

A bit of welding: So, a good weekend’s work. The floorboards have now been removed, and we are ready for fixing the crossframe on, then the chassis will be primed and painted.

Saturday 13th October:

bodywork coming along a treat:

and all the wood for the floorboards has been cut and treated:

I have cut the marine ply so that it fits, the previous ones were not that good. Next job is to put them in place, drill, then insert spiked T nuts, more details later!

Thursday 11th October: look what we have now!

a beautifully shotblasted and etch primed chassis, and an 8ft by 4 ft sheet of marine ply!

I know what I will be doing this weekend!

 

Saturday 6th October

adding more glass fibre to the wings, cleaning chassis prior to shotblasting

 

So, we have a red dusty workshop, a pair of wings that are gradually beginning to take the smooth shape before we went to Aintree, and a chassis that has no gunky underseal left on, with some very shiny steel where the paint had stuck, and some rather rusty steel, a bit too much for my liking, where the paint applied just three years ago had not.
Saturday 22nd. Started to work on the wings, repairing the grp. Started by clamping the broken bits together, then using the power file to make a shallow groove in the gel coat down to the grp, then filling it with resin. When the bits had set together, cleaned off the inside, which was basically underseal, then put patches of glass fibre matt. Just one layer at the moment, reckon a second coat of mat will be put on next. Then, I will clean off the outside, and see if the whole lot wants painting, or shall it retain the “rebuilt by Smithy” look?
Pics to follow.

19th September, a trip to Ridgeway Forge!

Took the chassis, and Andrew and Richard, plus me, got to work with a big flat table, lots of clamps, lumps of steel, big hammers, but most of all, lots of knowledge. Two hours later, a straight chassis.

Following a trip to Le Pla & Co, Hydraulic engineers, 0114 273 9068, my pal Chris Walker lent me a handle thing that acts as a puller. On the way home with it, I bought a thick round fence post, sawed it in half, wedged the chassis on these posts, anchored the other end to a convenient bracket on the floor, and hey presto, pulled the offending crossmember into line. Wooo Hooo! Phil Barrett is due to call and make sure I haven’t made a pigs ear, then it’s off to the grit blasters. More later….

here is Phil giving the chassis a really thorough inspection:

with me looking on. Just one issue now, the first crossmember is bent upwards, and needs pulling down. This will be done with the aid of an old Landrover front bumper, two stout pieces of timber, and my pal Chris Walker who has offered some hydraulic aid!

Saturday 11th August.
Bought a couple of trestle stands from Machine Mart. Chassis is now at a nice height to work on. The tape measure under the level shows we are not too far off. Spent a couple of hours cleaning the garage out (honestly!) and… sorting out my nuts, bolts and washers into separate tubs.

Also bought a cup wire brush that fits my angle grinder. Wow: talk about efficient! Mind you, you don’t just need goggles, you need safety trousers too!
Here is the result of a few minutes work. OK, they are still twisty, but at least they are shiny!

Maybe it was a good idea to completely strip the car, I don’t know how long the chassis might have lasted without another coat of paint: the paint hadn’t really stuck to the metal!

and here, a lack of even not stuck paint!

August 8th: next door neighbour and I lifted the tub off the car and onto the drive. I have been cleaning the chassis, removing the gunk the tub was sealed to the chassis with, taken out the floor panels, taken the gearbox out before it fell out, as the metal/rubber mount had sheared, and drained the fuel tank. This is the latest kink:

I have been going around with a tape measure, the wheelbase is still about an inch wider on the nearside than the offside, but looking more carefully, the holes on the (new) crossframe do not line up with the holes on the chassis. In fact, the holes on the nearside chassis leg do not seem to mirror the holes on the offside chassis leg. Still, Phil Barrett will come and check, he knows a great deal more than I do about these things.

This is the front part of the transmission tunnel, covering the gearbox, and is screwed to the bulkhead. I am sure it isn’t meant to be bent like this!

August 7th. The jig seemed to work, but the car still is not straight. The tub’s gotta come off. I have loosened most of the screws, nuts and bolts, taken off the rear wings, doors, roll bar, and have now discovered a couple more bent areas: the first is at the bottom corner of the offside door aperture, opposite the front nearside, where the impact was:


and the transmission tunnel, again driver’s side:

Here, I have devised an agricultural jig:
the idea being is that the steel tube is bolted to the garage floor with rawl;bolts, and to the front of the chassis

The car is then jacked up behind the kink in the chassis, the idea being to straighten it.

and here we are, after the test, with the new crossframe bolted roughly into place. The board between the chassis legs is just about horizontal, the crossframe is not too far out. But how close should we expect to get?

Remember this piece?

Well, look at it now!

OK, so I am not a professional panel beater, but by the time it’s back in the car, a coat of paint and hidden behind a new green grill, who will know?

With the car back home, I stripped off the bonnet (already loose), front wings and radiator. I had trailered it from the Rescue company who took it from Aintree to their premises near Crewe. I hoped to find that the front crossframe would be the only bent metal. Should be fixable. Meanwhile, the doors open and close ok, so fairly sure the tub is still sound.

So, cowl and bonnet removed, radiator out, though all three rubber mounts had sheared, car quite lopsided. The track control arm, sump and crossmember took a pounding, as did the crossmember just behind the engine. Have a look, see what you think.

Here is the place where the chassis is bent. About 4 inches in front of the bulkhead cross member.

So, the wings have now been removed, I will repair the nearside one, it’ll be a challenge, but hey, that’s what life is! I have taken off the wing supports, they are bolted to the top of the kingpins, and fix the sidelights to the wings, taken off the radiator support brackets… good progress. The car is so lopsided, but really hope that it is all down to the crossframe, I cannot see anything wrong with the rear suspension, or indeed the chassis (apart from the section near the exhaust manifold. This was Thursday July 12th. The dates are not important. I just thought it’d add to the interest.

Engine out, and the car looks quite straight:

bear in mind that the Landie parked behind is at a bit of a list!
But then, from a bit further back:

Please try and convince me that it is all down to the (easily replaceable) crossframe
LATEST!!!!! Car now on axle stands undneath the chassis, and it isn’t far off square.

Following are some excellent bits of help and advice I have received from pals on NBC, a world-wide Mog forum. I particularly like now being ‘a disciple of Button’!

I have loaded a couple of pics of my bent chassis on my website, look in the
‘diary of a rebuild’ page on the website below my sig.
When I’d stripped all the bits off, I thought it would be a Good Idea to jet
wash all the bits: king pins, hubs, track rods etc, and put them in my
garden cart, which has a mesh frame. This I did in front of the garage, and
gave the bits a really good Karchering. Boy, are they clean? Mrs Smith then
discovered blobs of black grease trodden through the house, which she blames
on me. On closer inspection of the drive, it seems that the greasy lumps
didn’t wash away, but stayed on the drive. They have gone now, some in the
house, some trodden into my print shop, and probably now trodden all over
Unstone Green.
Richard S
www.british-red-sportscar.co.uk

Brand new chassis three years ago, a Terry Foxon one, with gussets.
I will put some detailed pics on my saite, and let you know when they are
there. The crosshead is really bent! Again, it was new three years ago. This is
going to Tim Harrisons engineering works, he is a ‘Button’ too, having built
his racing Morgan, and loads of others. Should be in safe hands there
Really grateful for the advice
RS

OK, so the nearside chassis leg is bent up by an inch or so ahead of the
bulkhead. I thought of buying a hydraulic ram from Machine Mart, about £70,
and pushing it forwards and down.

Then, I woke up in the middle of the night, and had this idea (and a wee!)

Bolt a strip of steel to the garage floor, and bolt the top end to the holes
in the chassis leg where the crossframe bolts to. Then get a jack, and lift
the car, with not too much pressure, behind where it is bent, and leaving it
for a while, and over a few days, increasing the lift pressure a tad.
I think I should be able to blowlamp that area without too much risk of
setting the car alight. ( I have not suspended the insurance!)

Daft or dangerous? Certainly the cheapest way.

You are now becoming a disciple of Button. I think that would work just
fine. However; I would get a bit more information on if you should heat
while bending or not etc. etc. It is early in the morning here in Seattle.
JETLAG!! But when the “Lurker” wakes up I will ask Him how to do this.
You might send Me a picture of the damage.

Button

Richard, ref the method, no need to leave it between applying the load – the properties of the deformed section of steel tube will see no difference in bending it back in one go or in stages over days – the result is the same. IF you are to do this, then get it red hot first where it was bent and where you will rebend. Gas or arc.
BUT
The question still remains will it be safe afterwards? Has it been done before by another?
IF I did it, then after rebending it straight, I would be tempted to insert a tube snugly into the section where it was bent, but I not recommending anything of course. PJB

Peter:
Wonder what is bent. The crosshead or the chassis. I read Richard’s note
that it is the chassis just forward of the bulkhead. However if the
crosshead is bent (and I suspect it is) your suggestion is right on IMO.
It is 1″ steel tube and I have made this repair more than once.

Button

Peter
Do you think adding a stiffening member (don’t get excited Richard!) to one side of the chassis is a good thing? Maybe adding to both sides would even out the change to chassis flex?
BR
Colin (getting the evil eye for being online during desert!)

If you need a hand SHOUT
BR
Colin, who owns a sledge hammer and knows how to swing it!

Hiya
No, I know what you were thinking and concur but was just thinking if the changes made to frame stiffness on one side would affect handling especially given the use ‘Spinner’ Unstone puts the car to? And maybe a brace to the other side would keep everything in balance?
Just doing a George?
BR
Colin

Bill’s right. If you want to straighten a chassis frame some heat from a big torch in the optimum place while under stress from ram or other means will ensure the frame will take a permanent set in the form you should measure to the appropriate dimensions and straightness are achieved. The problem with bending or straightening cold is that as soon as you take the stress off it will tend to go back towards the original position. If you do it hot the chassis will permanently take the new, hopefully correct, dimensions. Remember when the chassis was originally formed it was heated to do so.
Mike

In the parallel world of three wheeled Morgans, we use a blowtorch to heat the affected part of the crosshead tube, place a scaffold pole over the crosshead tube up to the affected area and heave as hard as you can. The crosshead tubes and end lugs on the three wheelers are smaller OD, so the scaffold tube method works, but so does a large hammer. But plenty of heat is the key to an acceptable result.

Tony Q

Greetings… I would think that would work just fine. It’s pretty much
the standard procedure for fixing rear frame kick up. There is an article
in Fred’s book and there should be an article in GoMog as well.
Tim(D.Y.M.)

7 Responses to Rebuild

  1. Lady Oldtimer says:

    So sad to see your pics – so sorry not to have been there this weekend – I was soaking up the sun in the south

  2. Charlotte Ripper says:

    Good Luck with the Rebuild !!! x

  3. Owen said this! says:

    Everything on a Morgan is either replaceable or fixable, so follow Paul and
    Richard’s advice and use it. If you bend it, scratch it etc., you can either
    consider it as “patina” (mind you, Richard’s car is currently suffering a
    surfeit of “patina” after a little vigorous use, recently) or as an excuse
    to potter with it.

    Cheers,
    Owen, on another cold, dull day in Scotland.

  4. Button says:

    Not much to be said, other than what others have addressed. You have a lot more talent for this sort of thing on your side of the Pond than I do here in Western U.S. (Not to be confused with Eastern U.S. – which is another third world country we read about in the news, but rarely visit).

  5. Mike H says:

    I must doff my cap to you Smiffy, I’m not sure I’d have the confidence to undertake a rebuild on this scale, and I’m an ex mechanic!

    Keep up the good work chap

  6. Mike H says:

    I’m still tempted to do my floor with teak boat decking, though it’s a bit on the dear side, even if you get the reconstituted artificial stuff, would look cool tho!

    How do you get allowed to have so much play time? Shaz had to work today so I was left to clean the house, do the washing and cook dinner :-(

  7. Richard hull says:

    Ive seen your car from bright and sparkley to dented and injured and looking forward to seeing a newly restored sports car again . Rich r+b driver

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