Oaksey's Straight Six

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Oaksey
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Post by Oaksey » Thu Aug 30, 2018 10:10 pm

So, the engine has expired. It was always just a matter of time really. The good news is that the replacement will be ready in the next few months.

The initial plan (before I’d actually bought the car and I was dreaming dreams) was to simply swap the engine and fit an overdrive gearbox. Job done. Of course, things are never like that so my current list is as follows:
Swap engine
Fit overdrive gearbox (complete with new propshaft and tail mount arrangement fabricating)
Replace clutch including hydraulics
Strip and repaint engine bay
Replace heater with one I uprated a few years ago
Overhaul braking system
Overhaul suspension components
Repaint chassis
Go through engine bay wiring (more on that later)
Overhaul pedal box and mounting system


I started work in the engine bay by assessing everything so I can do as much work early on as possible so once paintwork has been completed it’s just a simple bolt up job.

Originally the car would have had windscreen washers operated using a mechanical pump on the dashboard but this car has been converted to an electric pump. While tracing the wiring and deciding on how to improve it, it was impossible to ignore the burn marks to the wires near to the pump as well as on the black PVC covering further down. I removed the covering and the wires inside were fine so it was an external cause. This led me to the wire for the water temperature sender which was also badly damaged. Upon finding it before, I just assumed that it had been caused by being in contact with the engine but after finding various other things, it seems that there has been an engine bay fire in the past. The strange thing is that it was only on the driver’s side, the other side to the exhaust manifold and carbs. It is also obvious that is was a pretty small fire so only localised fibreglass repairs will be necessary along with all the wiring.
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Brakes.
I’ve never been happy with the brakes on this car. Whilst they work very well, there is very little feel in the pedal, the servo drastically over assists and the rears intermittently bind.
Starting with the simple, the servo is non-original, the incorrect ratio and just looks terrible so I will be replacing it with a rebuilt and correct Girling item.
The master cylinder is original but leaking and very scummy so it was stripped down and inspected.
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The bore wasn’t too worn so I decided to stick with the body to retain originality. I started with ultrasonic cleaning all the components to better assess the condition. I then honed the bore to give it a good surface. The steel cap for the reservoir was too badly corroded so another has been ordered and I am waiting for the repair kit to arrive, then it can be built up.
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I have new flexible hoses for the front and rear and all the solid pipes are in fine condition. They just require a clean. The components at the back are easy to sort so I will get on with that later. As for the fronts, the straight sixes use different calipers and pads which are increasingly difficult to get hold of. For this reason, I think I’m going to convert to a Type 17 caliper as used on later Coupes as well as 5s and 5As. This gives a much wider choice of pads including all the NOS genuine Reliant ones I have.


Josh Oakes
2015, 2016 and 2017 SSSC Champion
1974 Yellow Se5a Overdrive
1971 Blue Jaguar XJ6
1966 Blue Coupe Straight Six
Previous- Coupe S6,
SS1 Ti, E90 SS1 Ti, SE6a x3, SE5 Auto, SS1 CVH, Mk2 Sabre, Rebel Estate

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Oaksey
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Post by Oaksey » Thu Aug 30, 2018 10:11 pm

Pedal box

Having owned and worked on Scimitars of all ages, it is quite obvious that the early cars are the best engineered and built with usually a lot more thought and money put into solutions. I’d hazard a guess that this is partly down to the much lower production numbers of these cars and also down to the enthusiasm that came with a brand new model range. There are some exceptions to the high quality though and a perfect example of this would be the pedal box. On one hand, it has the luxury of adjustable pedals, the way it is held onto the body leaves a lot to be desired. Of the four mounting holes in the pedal box, only two are actually used and have corresponding holes in the body.
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Of course, the bolts that hold the master cylinders on also hold the box to the body, it’s not in a widespread area and there is no load spreading. I’ll be utilizing all four mounting holes as well as bracing the pedal box to the top of the footwell to reduce flex everywhere. Load spreading plates will be made and used too.


Josh Oakes
2015, 2016 and 2017 SSSC Champion
1974 Yellow Se5a Overdrive
1971 Blue Jaguar XJ6
1966 Blue Coupe Straight Six
Previous- Coupe S6,
SS1 Ti, E90 SS1 Ti, SE6a x3, SE5 Auto, SS1 CVH, Mk2 Sabre, Rebel Estate

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Oaksey
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Oaksey's Straight Six

Post by Oaksey » Wed Oct 24, 2018 10:38 pm

Some of this work is out of sequence as I'm documenting progress one area at a time.

So the pedal box was stripped down, blasted, painted and built up with new bolts, bushes (still fitted to pedals in photo) and pins
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Following on from earlier, the brake master cylinder was rebuilt after being honed and the correct cap was bought. The clutch master cylinder was beyond saving and a new one was purchased. Both were zinc coated for improved protection and so they match. The correct aluminium cap will be bought for the clutch MC

Now all fitted back to the bulkhead using more fixing points that originally
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Josh Oakes
2015, 2016 and 2017 SSSC Champion
1974 Yellow Se5a Overdrive
1971 Blue Jaguar XJ6
1966 Blue Coupe Straight Six
Previous- Coupe S6,
SS1 Ti, E90 SS1 Ti, SE6a x3, SE5 Auto, SS1 CVH, Mk2 Sabre, Rebel Estate

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Oaksey
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Oaksey's Straight Six

Post by Oaksey » Wed Oct 24, 2018 10:57 pm

The gearbox.

As documented, this car has always had the non overdrive gearbox. Whilst there is nothing wrong with it, the lack of overdrive doesn't suit the straight six's driving characteristics as well as non O/D does In later Scimitars. For this reason, I'd always intended on fitting an overdrive unit. The car came with a rebuilt gearbox and overdrive unit so it was the obvious choice over all my spare gearboxes, even though it required some work to get in.

Once the old engine and gearbox was out of the car, I set about bolting the new gearbox to a spare engine block and fitted it to the car to see what was what. The gear stick position was the same but that was about the only similarity. The length of gearbox, propshaft, speedo cable drive and mounting arrangement were different.

The first job was to get it mounted in the chassis. The old gearbox used a ford style mount on a removable plate which was bolted up inside the chassis rails, but the new box uses bobbin type mounts. They also bolt to the gearboxes in completely different places, meaning I couldn't just modify the removable plate to take the bobbins. So, I got the new gearbox in the correct position then took some measurements to see what would work best. I must admit it was a very fiddly job with the car only on some low axle stands!
I quickly decided on using a ford type mount as it would allow me to fine tune the height of the gearbox tail with spacers to achieve the correct angle for the propshaft. It would also make replacing the mount in future much easier as the bobbins are a pain.

Here's what I ended up with. A fabricated bracket to bolt the ford style mount to the gearbox and a chassis plate that bolts to the underside of the chassis, as per GTEs.
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And this is how it all fits
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Next up was the propshaft. The old gearbox used a sliding joint into the back of the box whereas the new setup has a flange. I measured it up and made a pattern propshaft to have a new one made and balanced from.
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Josh Oakes
2015, 2016 and 2017 SSSC Champion
1974 Yellow Se5a Overdrive
1971 Blue Jaguar XJ6
1966 Blue Coupe Straight Six
Previous- Coupe S6,
SS1 Ti, E90 SS1 Ti, SE6a x3, SE5 Auto, SS1 CVH, Mk2 Sabre, Rebel Estate

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Post by efi_sprintgte » Thu Oct 25, 2018 7:36 am

Top work mate 8)


JC

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Post by philynnbob » Thu Oct 25, 2018 8:50 am

Very nice Josh,know what I shall be doing if/ when by gearbox bobbins fail!
Phil



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Post by MikeyBikey » Thu Oct 25, 2018 9:03 am

Looking good. Did you do the powder coating yourself? And what paint finish is on the pedals?

cheers


Is we sideways yet...

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Post by Oaksey » Thu Oct 25, 2018 11:27 am

Cheers guys.
The bobbins aren't too bad Phil, it just made sense to me as I needed to fabricate something anyway. I would also say that the quality of the replacement bobbins are pretty poor whereas the ford mounts are pretty good.

I didn't do the coating myself Mike, I've not got the resources yet. The pedals were done with autosmart primer and gloss black.


Josh Oakes
2015, 2016 and 2017 SSSC Champion
1974 Yellow Se5a Overdrive
1971 Blue Jaguar XJ6
1966 Blue Coupe Straight Six
Previous- Coupe S6,
SS1 Ti, E90 SS1 Ti, SE6a x3, SE5 Auto, SS1 CVH, Mk2 Sabre, Rebel Estate

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Post by Roger Pennington » Thu Oct 25, 2018 11:49 am

That looks great, Josh - it's a fantastic advert for your skills :D


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Post by *JP* » Thu Oct 25, 2018 3:21 pm

So is this moving forward as a Concours type/originality restoration,or do you have any mods/improvements in mind?

(Not counting the overdrive and later brakes!)



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Oaksey
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Post by Oaksey » Thu Oct 25, 2018 5:23 pm

Cheers Roger.

My mind is ever changing JP. The engine that’s been built isn’t standard so it will have a bit more go, I’ve got a set of wider wire wheels that may go on but I’m probably going to keep it relatively standard. Mainly as I don’t really have the time right now and don’t think I will in the near future


Josh Oakes
2015, 2016 and 2017 SSSC Champion
1974 Yellow Se5a Overdrive
1971 Blue Jaguar XJ6
1966 Blue Coupe Straight Six
Previous- Coupe S6,
SS1 Ti, E90 SS1 Ti, SE6a x3, SE5 Auto, SS1 CVH, Mk2 Sabre, Rebel Estate

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Post by David Tew » Thu Oct 25, 2018 5:40 pm

Great work Josh. I've been meaning to refurbish my pedal box for a while now (why does that sound a little dubious? :) ). You've set a high standard to aspire to!

Out of interest, where did you get the new bushes for the pedals? There's loads of play in the existing ones.

I've also found that the brake-pedal return spring has broken. Does anyone know if they're Reliant-specific or are they off some other car?


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Post by Oaksey » Thu Oct 25, 2018 5:56 pm

Thanks David. I made the bushes on a lathe. I'm not sure about the springs but I have another pedalbox in pieces somewhere that I can get one from if necessary


Josh Oakes
2015, 2016 and 2017 SSSC Champion
1974 Yellow Se5a Overdrive
1971 Blue Jaguar XJ6
1966 Blue Coupe Straight Six
Previous- Coupe S6,
SS1 Ti, E90 SS1 Ti, SE6a x3, SE5 Auto, SS1 CVH, Mk2 Sabre, Rebel Estate

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Post by David Tew » Thu Oct 25, 2018 6:01 pm

Thanks Josh. I'll see what my friendly machine-shop can do for me.

If you can find a spare spring I'd be very grateful and will happily swap some beer vouchers for it. :wink:


SE4B Coupe - rebuilt on brand-new chassis.
RSSOC member since 1978. 😲
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Almost everything will work again if you unplug it for a few minutes…including you.

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