Sunday, October 30, 2011

Well, I'm better.

I seem to have finally kicked a bug/disease/thing that I've had since Tuesday.

Tomorrow really is the day that everything happens, Caterham will be receiving calls for getting the inspection, IVA, and registration done (hope to get them all done so it just returns ready to insure). Once that phone call is done, I phone the recommended Caterham insurance and see if they will insure me on my US drivers license (5 years driving experience :-D), if not, then phone call number 3. This call will be made to the DVLA to see what needs to happen for me to get a British drivers license, if I understand the website right, I can trade my US for a British, which is handy. I will be getting a British license anyway, but it would be nice to take some of the stress away by not needing to get it done ASAP.

As you can tell, I'm feeling much better, the whole typing thing is going much smoother... I can think in full sentences... I no longer have the lollipop song stuck in my head... :-). Nothing like feeling better after a week of doing nothing but sleeping, drinking water, and watching Top Gear...

Anyway, heading with good spirits into the next week, and I should be able to get everything that needs doing, done.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011


I really need to post on this more when I don't have something car related to post...

Over the weekend I went down to my uncle in the New Forrest, and went out on his friends 38' yacht. It was great fun! It was the first time in recent years that I've been out on a sailing boat, and it was a blast. I even learnt some bits about sailing :-). Definitely a blast, and I will try and make sure I go out there again next season.

I'm really suffering from car withdrawal now... I desperately need to get behind a wheel and drive! Unfortunately today was a really unproductive day, felt home sick and just couldn't get motivated to do anything that needed to be done. Oh well, tomorrow is a new day, and hopefully will bring me the ability to get some phone calls done!

Lets hope tomorrow brings some confidence, and makes my car on its way to being road legal.

Friday, October 21, 2011

First start up video!

Here it is, the one, the only, the first start of my of so pretty Caterham! (boy did it make me work for it too)

As always watch in 720 :-D

So happy I can no go to sleep!
Oh, and my awesome new business cards arrive today! Sporting a red colour and my Logo :-D.

Could knock me over with a feather...

My car started! YES! Finally! :-D:-D:-D

I am importing the video now (it says an hour left... :-(). When that is uploaded (will be tonight by the time I edit and then upload it) I will let you all find out how it sounds!

I took another walk to the petrol station, but this time I only had to walk on the way back, a kind passer by gave me a lift most of the way there. Came back, emptied the 5 liter can (5.3 liters and almost 8 quid to be exact...) into the tank, attached the charger and went and watched some tv. After about 20 minutes I went out, tried starting it, this time the fuel pump sounded like it was pumping fuel rather than air (thankfully). It turned over... turned over... and STARTED! At the time i was just in disbelief, didn't dance around or woohoo or anything. I think that might have been because I was concentrating on making sure it didn't die (idle needs adjusting).

Now, it's time to organize the post build inspection... where're the phone numbers I need then...

The car runs! :-D

After starting it I of course ran it up to 92 deg to let the fan come on, it did, and now it's cooling down inside the shed, happy and cozy as a clam!

Video WILL be up ASAP.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Emotions stop the brain from working

I failed to realize earlier today, that I do actually know a fairly large amount about cars and how to find out what makes an engine not run...

It wasn't until later, after my uncle told me there was a battery charger in the shed, that I remembered what I know. After several tries at starting, with a revitalized battery, decided to take the fuel line off and see if the injectors were actually injecting petrol... they weren't. SO, I guess 2 liters isn't enough fuel to run the car on, I will have to remember that for when I do my long journeys... no going below a gallon left!

Tomorrow I will get to the petrol station, get a further 5 liters, and try again.

I am glad I'm finally getting on top of when something like emotions are stopping me from thinking things through correctly. There's a long way to go yet, I need to make it a couple of minutes, rather than a couple of hours... but still, it's an improvement over what it was! :-D

No videos forthcoming, it's just some pretty crappy footage of my car not starting.

It's stupid. Not having easy transportation has turned half a days worth of set backs into a weeks worth. It's stupid, annoying, and I hate it.

Them's the breaks I guess.
I'm obviously not allowed to start this car for some reason.

First it was the relay, then the inability to get petrol NOW the battery is dead! It cranked fine for 10-15 seconds or so, I heard it slowing down so I stopped, waited, then tried again, still no fire for another 10 seconds and then the battery was too low to do anything with. MAYBE in half an hour or so I'll try again, see if it has enough juice to fire.

I mean come on!

If I were home I'd have no issue with this at all, just throw a spare battery in, or use the car starter. Here it's a whole day until I can get anything fucking (sorry, I needed to) done! No car, no easy transport, no shop close enough to give anything USEFUL to me to get this thing started. My aunt is out right now so no transport there either.

........ I'm going to have a beer and think about my options... this is bloody ridiculous.

Video of me getting thoroughly pissed off and annoyed forthcoming.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Tried getting some petrol...

I took a walk to the nearest petrol station today to buy a jerry can, it's a 40 minute walk there, 40 back, and when I arrived they had NO jerry cans! I really didn't know what to say... Oh well, my uncle will be up here tomorrow, so I've asked him to bring some high octane petroleum with him.

A few things to get done on todays list: clean room, call Caterham, ogle car :-P.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Spent some quality time cleaning the garage today, it now matches the car, and is oh so clean!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Car is on the ground, with all body work on and secure!





I have to admit, it looks absolutely fantastic! I've been smiling since 3pm!





The tippy top of the car is only 3ft off the ground! Most car bonnets are 3ft off the ground! Crraaaaaazzzzzzaaaayyyy! I can hardly wait to get it out of the garage (tricky) onto a trailer, and down to Caterham for the post build inspection!


Tidying the shed is on the list for tomorrow, along with getting some petrol, and finishing the final little tidbits that need doing (SVA stuff, cosmetic bitsy bits).

:-D :-D :-D :-D :-D

Sunday, October 16, 2011

6000 miles away!

WOOOHOOOO!!! My dad is the most awesome amazing debugger in the world! From a whopping 6000 miles away he fixed my car! That has to be some kind of a record! He lead me, very patiently, through all the wiring diagrams, and helped me figure out what went where and why. Then he helped me track down where the issue would be, with 3 main point at the heart of the issue. The major one that he told me to do was to swap the light relay (something I know works) for the starter relay (same volts, no matter).

First however I checked there was continuity (something he also taught me how to find, from across the pond) between the negative battery terminal and all the ground points on the car, just in case. After checking and making sure those were fine, I decided to do as he had suggested, and swapped the light relay for the starter relay... pressed the button... and it turned over! YAAAAAYYYY!! I was so happy I jumped up and down for a solid 30 seconds! Just to see if the starter relay was truly bad, I plugged it into where the light relay use to be, turns out the lights still all worked, so, maybe it was just a little kooky... Either way it doesn't matter now because my car turns over!

Tomorrow I will find some gas, and start it up for the very first time! :-D:-D:-D:-D:-D:-D:-D

Best day EVER!

Thank you :-D:-D

Saturday, October 15, 2011

The day the earth... didn't care

S today was supposed to be the big day, the day everything started and the car could finally get down on its wheels!

No such luck, there's a short, or a lose wire, or something that stops the "start" signal getting to the starter solenoid. I have checked every piece of wiring that I've done and they match the manual exactly. I will double check some things tomorrow, just to make sure it's not my fault :-P.

If I still can't figure it out, I will call Caterham on monday and see what they can do to help. I may end up just sending the car to them and have them finish it all up to the point where it's either ready, or almost ready for the road.

Until tomorrow! Here's hoping I can figure it out after sleeping on it.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Nice second birthday

Had a nice meal out with my uncle, cousin, my uncles girlfriend, and her son. Very nice meal, lots of fun hanging out with them all :-).

Tomorrow is the day... the day the earth stands still :-P.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

So I wont be painting the exhaust, it is in the regulations under exhaust, as something that is strictly prohibited to do... yay.... :-(.

Oh well, I did learn that the exhaust is SS so I'm happy that it wont rust at least. I will just have to work harder to keep it looking good.

Played around with gopro locations today after getting the interior riveting, heater block off plate, and rewiring done.

Location 1, front fender looking back. It will move a little so less fender shows, but this is pretty much it.

Location 2. drivers side rear fender facing forward, should be pretty much how it is in the picture, I think it works anyway, will change it if I find out it sucks while driving :-D.

Location 3 (3 cameras) will be either pic 3 or pic 4, unsure, will have to discover which is best through trial and error.

pic 3

pic 4

Tomorrow is fluids day! Awoohhoo!! first start up likely to be saturday middayish!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Not much left to do...

I'm finding it a little hard to fill the time. I suppose I should start in on the "final checks" part of the manual, but I really want to get it on the ground with brakes and everything working first.

Tomorrow I'll redo the headlight wiring, it's pretty grim right now, works, then doesn't so I'll see what I can do. I will also see if I have a drill small enough to do the washer bottle, otherwise that'll have to wait for another day.

I think it's time to test fit the nose cone and bonnet... yes, definitely time to do that!

Pictures from today, tonneau cover, and seat! It all looks so amazing!

Dash with tonneau cover (how it will be 90% of the time when I'm on the road, it's not allowed while racing).

Seat and harness in all their awesomeness

More dash!

Passenger side tonneau cover, it droops a little, but it will be better when the seat is swapped to that side.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Today, day 6 of actual work.

Rear boot cover done, headlights on and working, turn signals need bulbs... rear lights on and working, harness in, except for the lap straps... using the lap strap bolts to hold the boot cover in place on the passenger side since my passenger harness hasn't arrived yet. It's on back order.

It is really, literally, almost ready to drop down and drive away. There are some things to work out first, and do first, like put all the fluids in. As my dad said... it's not a race, yet.

Pictures :-D

Rear boot cover in all its awesomeness, you can also see one light.

Closer look, it is so awesome! All the poppers are pretty easy to put on, takes 10-20 minutes maybe to get them all on and done.

Working headlights!

Harness almost all in, still have some ugly drill shavings in the bottom... need to get the vacuum in there really.

The 3/4 inch drive socket set, that includes the 41mm socket for the rear axle bolts! Picture does not do justice to the shear size and weight of that box.

Tomorrow, it's tonneau cover and... umm... rear view mirror... and umm.... I guess... I'll see if I can get a lift into Didcot to buy some bits I need, brake fluid and such.

It's kind of scary having the car pretty much done!

Video from fender day (friday)

Here's the fender day video, at last. It starts out slow, but then goes back to normal pace when the music speeds up a little, it looked a little funky otherwise.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Waiting for uploads...

Uploading pictures takes far too long...

Here's the first one anyway. Tidied cooling, the hose to the reservoir now goes behind the spark plugs and under the intake, much cleaner look on top. The mass of wires is also cleaned up, and the clutch cable has been stylistically moved :-).






And windscreen wipers, on, and as you can see, work great! They cleared all the dust no worries!

It's my birthday today...

I'm 21!

The caterham is coming along nicely, pictures and thing later today, I do have video from the other day doing the front fenders, just haven't got around to making it yet :-(. Today is just pottering around, I ran the washer bottle tube to the nozzle, did some wiring, put the windscreen wipers on, things like that. Little things that can now be done since the drive train is all tidied up.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Exhaust painting

I'll be painting the exhaust. For one because it's ugly not painted, and for two, it'll rust, so it'll be even uglier.

Here is the site, they'll be the red an black on this page.

Day 5!

For those wondering, the blue nozzles are for the fire system... Just so you all know, because I didn't until I asked caterham (those guys are so helpful and awesome!).

Front fenders done! Beware, 15mm drill bit required... If you don't have one, buy one :-D.

The fenders went on without much issue, they were fiddly though, very very fiddly. I managed to drill all the holes the right size without damaging the fiberglass though, so that's a plus! When threading the wire through for the repeater, make sure you put another wire up from the hole in the wingstay that the wire is "supposed" to come out of. This is a real pain, and takes a while, but without that second piece of wire, the repeater wire will never come out of the wingstay.

Fenders on, cooling done, engine wiring done (except for battery connections). Me thinks it's starting to look like a car!

Some detail on the washer bottle, it's a little confusing, but fun all the same. It's hard to put it the wrong way round.

I haven't done any tidying up yet, so no laughing at wires and plumbing going all over the place!

Another of the whole car. I loves it, I can hardly wait to see it with bonnet and nose! Although, I do know I have to wait until it's on the ground and everything else is done, and the first start up has been taken care of before I can have that pleasure.

Accelerator cable took a while to get to the right tension, but got there in the end... the slightest movement of my right (lead) foot will twitch the buttery fly valve :-D:-D.

And just because I haven't actually posted one of the awesome wheels, here they are!

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Logo designer

I should definitely say that my brother designed my epic new logo.

He did it as a present to me, and I really really like it!

Thank you very much!
So technically... I could start and drive the car tomorrow. But, I have no oil for the engine/transmission, so I'll order up the Caterham starter kit and while that's arriving I'll finish the car! Depending on how I feel about working on it on my 21st birthday, I should have the car completely finished by wednesday next week! Then just the post build inspection, IVA, SVA, insurance, and registration to deal with... :-D.

I'd also like the thank my uncle a lot for all the help with the car yesterday, it would have been rather difficult by myself, doable, just more stressful! He's the man in the white shirt, doing most of the shoving around of the transmission while the engine was going in :-D.

Engine in!

Engine going in video... it's really cool seeing so much work compressed into one and a half minutes... So what this video means is... the whole drivetrain, and everything important to making the car move and stay on the road, is installed! Rear suspension, diff, drive shaft, transmission, engine, steering, and front suspension all done.

Now just comes the electrical bits, cooling, and final cosmetic bits like the covers etc.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Picture time!

A big thank you to my uncle who helped me get the engine in and some other bits, really could not have done it without him! (he came up with a brilliant idea to put the engine in without moving the car... outstanding!.

Two teaser pics for you to ogle over, more will be up later, right now I need to sit in a comfy chair, and eat some food. Some info to :-P. The overall job of putting the engine in, connecting the transmission up, lifting it, moving it into position, lowering it in and bolting it took roughly 1.5 hours. prep took about 1, and final things that I started but haven't finished (steering column, wiring) took about another 2, mainly because I was dawdling and not moving very fast :-D.


Engine is in! Pictures and video to come later today, still working!

Engine hoist will be here in an hour!

One hour... then it will be here for one day, it goes back tonight. So, short story is, the engine will be in by tonight! Awoohoo!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

What do you think?

Spruced up the place a bit, what do you guys think of the logo?

Starting to look like a car!

Well, after a little hiccup in the morning, I got to work and got the rear fenders on easily, and with no issues!

Also test fitted the tonneau cover and boot cover, it's starting to look good!

I didn't get much else done, but hey, little bit at a time... I'm starting to get grumpy and withdrawal symptoms from having not driven a car for a month... going to have to rectify that somehow.

Anyway, on to the pictures!

Right rear fender was first done.

With tonneau cover kinda sorta in place :). the passenger side of the cover will be in place 90% of the time, so will have to make sure it's extra neat.

Tonneau cover almost right

Boot cover, some detail on fender piping (trim) too.

Both fenders on! And, guess what, there's an inch of space between each fender, and my garage doorway...

Garage was built to different specs, here I was thinking the car was 5'1'' wide... noooo it's 65'' wide... door is 67 1/4''.... will just have to be extra careful driving in and out.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Work day 3 (yesterday)

Here's the video of yesterdays work, came out better than the last ones I think.

I'm so surprised it's only been 3 working days since I started on the project! So much fun.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

What a great day!

I got lots of work done, even with taking a two and a half hour lunch break :D. The lights are a huge help, and allowed me to work until 7:30, rather than close up around 5 because of lack of light.

Today I installed all the rear suspension. The brakes, radius arms, shocks, de dion tube, everything is in and ready to go! The last thing to tie up the rear end is to torque the rear axle nuts, they're 43mm, so a rather large socket is required...

Tomorrow I'll be starting on the cosmetic bits. The Tonneau cover, boot cover, interior odds and ends, fenders, and lighting. The engine/gearbox setup is the last major piece to be done, and I need to find a hoist to do that, and see when my uncle will be free, it's a two man job.

Picture 1 is the right rear, picture 2 is the underside, showing the diff de dion tube, and half shafts, picture 3 is the left rear, then the whole car is picture 4! It really is starting to look like a car now, I've also already fallen in love with it. If it wasn't so tiny I'd sleep in it!

On to the pictures! Click on one to get linked through to more.





Till tomorrow!


Saturday, October 1, 2011


(Red Dwarf fans will understand the title...)

Anyway, today was a slow day, I went to the local independent parts store and bought some tools I needed to finish off and torque all the bolts around the car that I hadn't yet. Came back and installed the steering rack, so it's all nice and finished up front now! Roughly 2 turns lock to lock! Amazing!

My uncle was here today too, and got the shed lights all set up, so I now have light to work with! Awesome! Tomorrow I'll spend a large majority working on the rear suspension and hopefully get it done, if not, oh well, I'll just finish monday. so far I'm still within my previously set but then ignored 7-12 days build time haha. Although, I have the luxury of being able to work on it every day, so that makes progress a lot faster.

Picture 1, car sitting with light! Picture 2, the front right side, all done and complete, everything torqued up nicely. Picture 3 the shed doors closed, lots of light, very cool.

Pic 1 - 2 - 3