Thursday, 27 March 2014

Dashboard....Mini update

During the evenings this week after work I've started working on the dashboard, as its been quite cold and decided I deserved a small break in terms of temperature. The dashboard that comes with the DDR is very what I call 'kitcarish' that in itself is not a bad thing but the dashs can always seem quite basic and in some instances work very well in cars, like Caterhams. Also the dashboard that comes with the car would not meet the radius requirements although could be resolved easily on it. The below is a pic of the dash with the kit, (no centre console)

So I have over the weeks tried many designs of the interior, even started making the centre console out of various materials, plastic sheet, fibreglass (as you saw) and some MDF. The centre console I will come back to once the dash has finished but there is a plan now (at least in my head!)

So I took the original dashboard with the MR2 and the original dashboard with the GT4 and decided a mirage of both was needed. the GT4 dash fitted correctly between the pillars and the MR2 had some nice curves to it, so firstly I fitted the GT4 dash and marked where the front brace was under it with masking tape.

The MR2 dash in comparison is massive and wont fit inside the car so I chopped it into 2 in the middle where the glove box was. Once this was done I then lined up where I wanted it and also marked where the front brace went through. I then cut both 1 inch further in each direction so I had a small overlap.

I then fibre glassed the two pieces together. I needed strength so I did the underside and also on the top.

 This does mean more filler / sanding however I need some strength there. I also reattached part of the MR2 dash to the passenger side.

As well as the above, to meet lower radius I got a large gutter pipe and cut it to length and attached it on to the passenger side of the dash. You can just see it in he above photos.

This is where I'm up to, so the next job will be to fill and sand a lot the top areas to get nice smooth edges and confirm radius's. Once done ill move on to the lower region and making a centre console that joints it.

This is a test fit I did and it looks like it should have a good look to me.

I'll be double checking my wiring next week and then securing all that tight, as that will be done and then continuing on with the dashboard. I still have some wiring to get into a good position at the back of the car but that can wait as I need some brackets and bits and need to design the layout.

Sunday, 23 March 2014

Clutch, Throttle pedal, Exhaust and Finally moving under its own steam

It was a busy week in terms of progress but not really in terms of time spent as I was away for work again at the beginning of the week.

I have had the throttle pedal strengthened as I felt it could be a little weak when pressed, next this moved me on to a problem I'd been ignoring, the fact the movement at the pedal only opened the throttle about 65%. So I needed to come up with a multiply to make this work.I worked out I could use the chassis and a simple multiplier near the fuel tank thanks to the help of some people on a forum. This made  a solution much easier

The throttle cable from the pedal came in at the low point whilst the cable to the throttle body went at the high point. the picture below shows the simple mechanism.Some parts will be replaced with more permanent parts as this was a proof of concept more then the finished article, however a throttle cable does not apply much force so doesn't need to be very beefy either.

The locking nut stops its all falling apart and the spring encourages the system back to the resting position, stopping the throttle body spring having to do all the work. Its gives a good feel to the throttle pedal and you can feel it nicely under your foot.

Next was the Exhaust, I was quite worried by this; the american car just had a straight through pipe so I knew I was going to have to come up with something, the first was a de-cat pipe (I don't need a Cat Test for IVA). This was a 3" pipe and id read if a system is fully 3" you can suffer from boost creep....well 3" was making everything tight anyway as I went down to 2.5" with some flexi and then fitted the silencer in the only position it could go...under the sump. It gives a lovely noise! If its not quite quiet enough ill use an exhaust bung or stick an extra small silencer in there as well. I had to get the pipe custom made and a guy came out and helped me with that and did an excellent job and at short notice. Tricket Welding

At this point I bolted in a seat yesterday and this morning decided today was the day to roll itself out the garage and it all went perfectly.

This was the first time id got to use the clutch in the position id be sat and it was 'usable'. No doubt it was heavy but usable. I do plan on letting my Girlfriend drive the car when she wants (the seat is on runners) but with this clutch I'm not sure how possible that would be other then short drives.

The clutch had plenty of spare travel so I decided I could go down a bore size, so although it would require a longer push of the pedal it would be lighter. So I set about changing the master cylinder from an 0.750 to a 0.625. this master cylinder takes 15% (or 20%) less effort, sorry I forgot what I worked it out at but takes the same extra in distance as well.

It took me around 2 hours to change the master cylinder, so it shows how much harder things get as the car is built. However it was worth it, the clutch feels much nicer and lighter and the travel worked out perfectly with the biting point half way up the pedal, unlike before. I even got my girlfriend to test it, as if it wasn't good enough I was out of ideas on making it lighter but it seemed easier to her as well.

So finally, this was me reversing the car out after changing the clutch master cylinder.The video is of poor quality and a bit short. I will do a better one soon when the weather allows.

I did do a couple more bits of wiring...but we are all sick of wiring by now...I know I am! I'm away again next weekend for another stag do! So an update will probably be lacking again I'm afraid!

Sunday, 16 March 2014

Wiring last stages, a clean up and walk around

As I mentioned I was away on a stage do last weekend and then away for work directly afterwards so time has been limited but ive continued with the wiring!

I've now completed the trinity switch for the aircon system which is part of a safety system. I've completed the wiring of the fan and also continued on and completed the wire stripping from where I left off last time with that horrible last photo, that same area now looks like the below.

Although there is extra length as you can see I wont be cutting this away as I don't want to add joins into the main charging wires, they will be coiled and securely attached in the area you see. This area is used by nothing else anyway. (on the GT8 its a 2nd fuel tank).

As well as this I tidied up all the wiring to the fuel pump and sender and attached it as required at a maximum distance of 300mm.

I then installed the oil pressure sensor that came with the dash, I had to use an adapter and it just fitted into the original housing space.

Following this I put the wheels on, wheeled the car out cleaned the garage out of cut bits of wire and dirt and grime and then gave the car a clean as well. I did a small walk around of the car in its current state. Vid Below;

So I'm away again for work for a couple of days but when I return the guy is coming to make and install the custom silencer so I can finally run the car and set the timing! At the moment it is just too loud! This will allow me to move on to fitting the throttle cable assembly or should that be make it as the pedal doesn't have enough throw to fully open the throttle so will need some sort of linkage.

Sunday, 2 March 2014

Engine Coolant system, Dials and more wiring!

So after the engine being started up before, it was time to put all the fluids in so that included the engine coolant and gearbox oil.

I already had the fan wired up and because the MR2 has two types of radiator temperature sensors (one for aircon cars and one for out) my fans were on constantly. First I ran it with the heaters off to try and circulate around the system but no such luck turned the heater system on and the air from that was cleared instantly and the heater was giving out warm air (IVA requirement is to be able to demist your windscreen). However I could not get the system to circulate...maybe an airlock, now I don't know if the temperature wasn't fully up to required temp to open the thermostat (82c) or it was broken...I had a spare so changed it and replaced the coolant.

Still was unable to tell, due to the exhaust being just a decat pipe its extremely loud so could not do this late at night and leave it constantly running, so I'm currently sourcing a temporary backbox to fix directly on so I can run it and its quiet! I however did have a small leak...which was quickly fixed!

On the Saturday my dials from america came, they are Dakota digital dial set for a ford mustang '70. I found out from Dakota before hand all dials used the same box its just the layout with the car sets is setup so they can be directly fitted. This means anything in their range could be chosen and fitted. I went for them for a few reasons one was the extremely easy setup from what id read of the PDf file on the internet.

And it was easy within 2 hours, id wired indicator lights, dim light, headlight, Tacho, Speedo, fuel sender, volt meter and coolant coolant sensor. I still have the oil sensor to go.

The coolant sensor required I used the one provided but with the adapters this fitted directly into the MR2 water inlet housing in replacement of the one the MR2 already had for the gauges. It was a little messy with coolant already in there!!

Everything can be setup on the dial system so easily. I haven't set the speedo yet although wired but what I like is it gives two custom methods to calibrate which are more accurate then any MPH / KMH conversion box (needed for an import MR2)

Most cars with ECU's nowadays give out a PPM (pulse per mile) which may be 8,000 for instance, however stick bigger wheels and tires on and this can make your speedo out. By calibrating with your bigger wheels and tyres on the car the Dials may register that its only 7850ppm. Bringing the accuracy back to your speed with the bigger wheels. The accuracy is important for the IVA tests.

You'll notice in the first photo of the dials a control box, this is where all wires go with a simple Cat cable to the dials...meaning less cables everywhere again! the control box fixed nicely above the fusebox and allowed me to tidy the wires easily as well.

The small fusebox to the top of the photo is the original MR2 power feed fusebox giving some additional protection in case of a serious pull of amps.

Following the tidying of the cables there, I now knew there were no more wires to be added down the length of the cabin that id done, or worst case 1 or 2 if id made a mistake it was time to strip out the load of unwanted cables and everything seemed to get tidier quiet quickly.

The above shows all the cable securing points via brackets screwed into the chassis and cable ties to secure them, maximum distance for the IVA is every 300mm.

In the photo below the 2 cables down on the left hand side will fit within the one conduit i just have not done so yet. The cuttings on the floor are for the seat mountings and the longer strips are where the runner clips will move along so by not having the deadening stops fowling.

Normally you get to see all the nice work afterwards and not the mayhem that is on going at the just behind the passenger cabin the work continues and the wires need sorting.

I'm away for a stag do this weekend and then work, so not sure how much will get done this week and next so could be a couple of weeks before the next update!