Friday, 19 December 2014

The Metal Benders...

So the past few month on the Allard have been all about the body and loads more fiddly bits.. The car as it is now essentially fires up and is a working rolling chassis... A couple of weeks ago I got the call I'd been waiting for ... the Allard was ready to leave my workshop (for the first time) and head over to Vintagecars  (vintagecars.com) in Lymington to have it's body built... I knew I was never going to be skilled enough to 'weld aluminium' let alone getting it to look right, so the decision and funding was made into the project to get the body done right.... glad I did!.....



All the bits of bodywork including the boat tail were bundled together and trailered away  sob ..
A few weeks later I headed over to Vintagecars to see how the chaps were getting on mocking up with cardboard and coffee....

Aluminium Alchemy ... or where the magic really happens...


Getting the Boattail to sit low and at the right level is very much a 'by eye' experience.. Once it was cut and dropped the car from the back end immediately took on a whole new look and feel... it was good... really good.... 


Seating position is crucial.. Having worked out pedal positions, steering column/wheel and gear shift and seat location already (as best I could without the body) we could now really see it all coming together.. I had also got a floor in the car for mockup having previously used my trusty milk crate on the garage floor :))



The bodywork hs been cut and curved to open up the elbow room and also include a wind deflector. This will be removable as the car has a complete windscreen which can be detached,  I wanted both options... Touring and Racing...


The nose is still very much on the drawing board... It will be raked back slightly, cut down and an Allard looking grill fabricated to cover the large radiator hole..  I think a few days with cardboard and a pen required here ..

More to following in the new year as we get the body finished! ...


Friday, 14 November 2014

Where did November come from?

Hey All, it's been a few months since I last Blogged and update... but since May, I moved house over the summer, and have been doing loads on the Allard, but just small fiddly bits, so here is a summary....

Oh and I've also setup a new Blog for a new project car I'm 'helping with' on the side. It's a 1967 Mini which requires a total rebuild. Follow it here: 

http://minimus67.blogspot.co.uk/



The Allard is about to go off the a body shop to have the boat tail backend carefully welded to the main centre scuttle section. Which I decided was well beyond my ability to weld aluminium not only well, but perfectly. I heavy expense, but as this is very much the visual feature of the car, money well spent.

Jobs over the summer included: Finishing the transverse spring mounting plates, dressing the engine with new distributor, dynamo, making mounting brackets, oil lines, test turning the engine, finishing the rear prop shaft and back end assembly, fitting the gearbox, moving and rewelding the radiator position and mounts... the list goes on, so here are a few pics instead : )


Rebuilding the Carbs was a fiddly, but they should do the trick...


I've done loads on sourcing and building all the dash instruments, I'll do a separate entry on that ..




Tuesday, 27 May 2014

30 years of Mechanical Madness : )


                        30 years of messing with lots of bits.. Never a dull moment and plenty of fun : )

Tuesday, 13 May 2014

Engine and Body Building

.. Busy few weeks with all sorts of stuff.. Rebuilding the starter motor, and actually turning the engine over! First time this lump has come alive for decades : ) Can't wait to actually fire it up!!!Got the Flywheel in, Alternator, rebuilding the Carbs, need a new Dissy.. the old Ford Pilot unit is just stuffed : ( ...

I spent forever cleaning a polishing the Allard intake manifold to match the Offenhauser Heads. It's looking good, pleased with the 'look' the carbs should finish this off very nicely. I have trial fitted the gearbox and that sits square. The radiator will have to come back several inches, which puts the centre of gravity nicely in the chassis.. it also allows me to play with a more raked nose cone..





Many of the little parts either don't exist or aftermarket gear just don't look right, so I've ended up fabricating all sorts of odds n ends... but that's the joy of Hot rod!


She's sitting more even now and the more goodies I bolt on the more hunkered down she sits...and looks like it should be going sideways round a dirt raceway : ) Note to two side exhaust pipes hanging out there.. not sure where to run them yet.. straight up?

This is my dining room table, and in my opinion how a dining room table should look... well there is no point in polishing it!

Finally I've done a couple of pencil drawings, based on the Baldwin-Payne Special of the same year ... Here I've show the Allard with the boat tail, but need to keep working the nose etc ....





Sunday, 13 April 2014

Engine & Chassis get married xxx


.... so having picked the block up in the back of Truckasaurus ( I knew I'd built a long wheel base landrover for sooo many reasons )  I had a wild weekend trial fitting the engine into the chassis...


 The Engine sat in the chassis perfectly .. I dropped the bulkhead and bonnet on along with the upright water pipes to get an idea of clearance between pipes and bonnet... 


I'll have to move the radiator back and drop it some to fit properly. This will however give me clearance to remodel and slope back the front body nosecone...


With the engine in, I hung the gearbox and rear prop shaft in to finally get my rear axle position set..


It also allowed me to pick up the two rear mounts from the gear box... With the weight of the engine and gearbox in, I could bolt up all the final suspension components.. shackles, leaf springs, dampers and bounce up and down on the chassis!!!... Yup she's settling down and I can really start to see how the cars ride height will be..

Engine Build!


Well it's finally here.. after several months of problems and building, the engine block is built!... Back in November if you recall I did some welding repair work on the block prior to getting it blasted clean and getting the main components built. 





The block took a huge amount of effort to bring it back from the dead.. It's been built by Jimmy at Valley Gas Speed Shop in Andover not far from me. Having not worked on a Flathead block before and knowing it was going to be a tough job, I calling in professional help!!  All of the main running components have been replaced.. Pistons, Valves, Crank and Cam shafts etc.. All the valves have been lapped in and all new springs and guides.

The engine has also been fitted with two new water pumps which also incorporate the front engine mounts. 

Also fitted the two new cylinder heads and new plugs.. Working the head studs (and snapping them off!) was tricky, but it all worked out.. 






Looking good, looking like a real engine at last!



Thursday, 10 April 2014

Suspension tension!

.. fitting coil over onto shocks is dead easy... 

The Allard has two transverse leaf springs, one front and one back, both if you have been keeping up I had made earlier this year (Jones Springs in Birmingham). Getting the springs to fit squarely under the chassis has been a challenge to say the least! Because the springs are new, they are very stiff and as the dimensions and weight loading I had to calculate extremely accurately (wild guess in a stiff breeze) are going to be more luck than judgement. 

Front Leafer with dropped front arms to fit the shackle links
The front drop arms support a perch pin which connects the shakle link pins to the springs. On top of that, drop links run upto the drop arms connected to the Luvax Girling dampers.. still with me? ... All of the bushings have been either fabricated with inner slievings to accomodate poly bushes or for example the main swinging arms have new metalatic bushes fitted and their hing pins machined down to fit... (tricky time in Dad's workshop to use the lathe and we bent his vice handle hanging of a scafold pole pulling the bushes in!)  Fairly liquid all over the rubber bushes... always works : ))

Shackle pins in!!

The drop link arms to the dampers Ive had to weld and bend to 'fit the car' again, it's difficult to judge just where it needs to sit until totally finished.. For now, best guess is good enough to get her on the road.. tweaking with a sledge hammer will be necessary.. it's a far cray from shimming and setting camber and caster angles on a Jaguar!


So she's got four on the floor and sat up like a praying mantis! Can't wait to get the engine dropped in ... Talking of which, picking her up tomorrow!! Pics in the next update...



Monday, 24 February 2014

The Backend...

Over the past few weeks I've been thinking about the bodywork for the Allard, what I need, what I need to do, and how the car should look. Getting it right at this stage is crucial. If the car doesn't look right, everything else is a waste of time!

Back in the late 1930's when Sydney Allard built the first Allard 'Special' he happened to have a Bugatti Type 35 laying around, and used the famous 'boat tail' backend from the Bugatti to graft onto the Allard. I wanted to try and recreate this look, and get the car dimentionally and proportionally correct...

I got in touch with the company who build the body work I already have to get hold of a boat tail. So far the bulkhead and engine bay, should all work and look good on the Chassis. They happened to have a boat tail for another can that never got finished so today it arrived at my place to see if we could graft it on! Looks like it will fit down so it's a bit big at the mo!


The boat tail is made of of 3 sections.. The two main sections visible and a third section is an under pan section that seals under the back of the car. Currently it's pirched on the back of the chassis and it will need dropping to line up with the dash top... so use your imagination with the following pic!


I'm also working on the nose section, raking it forwards so it's not so 'stumpy' The motorcycle style wheel arches over the back wheels will also need shortening. The flare at the back looks good and I'm hoping to keep that styling in the finished arches.


Long way to go, lots of thinking, measuring, maker pen and masking tape .... and plenty of Barn pacing!

Did some suspension painting for some therapy...


This final shot is of a 'saltflat' speedster called the Adler, which is the style and design of boat tail I'm shooting for.. wish me luck!





Monday, 3 February 2014

Springs and things..

Well it's been a couple of months since my last blog, so a quick update...

I've spent  Dec/Jan working on the E-type preparing it for sale (sobb...) still I need to move on and other priorities and projects are coming up..  Last week the Jag passed it's MOT and she's on the road. Currently working on the Sale... In early December I took delivery of something I wanted for too long, an early convertible XK8 Jag... and it was so worth the wait. It's every bit as amazing to drive and play with as I knew it would be : )    .. and yes the rainbow is real!




Meanwhile on the Allard I have been waiting on the leaf springs to be built and the engine to be built. Last week the springs which I've had custom made arrived! They look amazing and looks like they will fit/work. I was a real shot in the dark having these made. Plenty of predicted loading calculations and guess work. So only time will tell if I've got this right, really when the car is complete and it's sat fully loaded to exercise and sit the springs correctly. They may well need adjusting and re-fitting when the car is complete......



The Engine has been dipped and blasted to get it back to clean. It's currently being rebuilt with all new components. I've outsourced this task to Valley Gas Speed shop. Getting the ceased valves and seats out was a real game they were badly pitted. So we are currently waiting on a new set from the US.

I'm working on designing a complete wiring loom. I've made a mockup dashboard to get an idea of requirements and layout. It's quite a minimal design with limited instruments and switches... no mod cons here!

More soon, hopefully some Engine pics.... For now here's one of the workshop with both Jags and the Allard undercover...