Monday, June 16, 2014

Not a Project Car Weekend

Dateline - 06/14/2014 - I didn't spend much time on the car this weekend.  The weather was a bit nasty (they call it the "June Gloom" in the PacNW) and I didn't feel like working in the garage, so I spent time doing artwork instead.  But I did do some work in the evenings while relaxing in front of the TV.  I fit the upper glove box door with the new hinges and mounted the cool little Jaguar glove box handle.  I also started to modify the actual glove box, which is made of densely pressed paper, to fit in the new dash.  With all the new wire running behind the glove box, I'm going to need to make modifications so that it will fit.  Finally, I did some more sanding on the carbon fiber center console.  I have just a few holes I need to fill and sand, but it is getting close to time for the finish coats of lacquer.

So, what is remaining on the dash?  I need to get the center instrument section sanded again, and cut the veneer to shape.  Do a little routing on the back of the left and right sides so that I can mount the air vents, and give the wood a final sand down with 600 paper to get it baby butt smooth.  Then it's finish time!

On the paint front, I stopped by my paint shop and talked to the guy who will be painting the car.  He said he was about four weeks out before he could take the car (end of June).  I need to call him at the end of this week to make an appointment for him to come over and take a look at the condition of the car.  At that point, I think he will be able to tell me how much it will cost as well as give me some idea on when it will be done.  Right now, I'm leaning toward having them do all the work.  I just don't think I can spend another couple of mouths sanding the car again.  I've already spent a year doing bodywork.  I'm thinking I should leave the final work to a pro!  We will see once I get the estimate.

Monday, June 9, 2014

Good Weekend to Clean and Sort

Dateline - 06/07/2014 - I didn't do a lot on the car itself this weekend.  I did cut the hole in the right dash board to fit the Information Center.  This took some time because I had to cut the hole with a coping saw which isn't very accurate.  So it took a lot of sanding and filing to get the plastic insert to fit, but I eventually got it.  It's going to look pretty cool!

I also worked on getting the upper glove box door fitted.  We used the original door as the base for the new one and I had to fill the holes for the original lock (gone) and the hinges.  I used body filler, which worked fine since I'm going to paint over these areas anyway.  During the week I ordered some 3/4 butt hinges for the door.  When they came in, I realized that they were too big, but I was able to modify them to make them about 1/3 their original size, so they loop pretty good.  Once I got the hinges, I was able to start sizing the door, which took a lot of sanding to get it to the right size and shape.

The real work this weekend was cleaning the shelves in my garage, which had gotten out of control!  I'm at the point that I need to start thinking about all the parts that are going to go back on the car.  So I started pulling all the boxes and milk crates of parts off the shelves and going through them, separating those that I no longer need and those that I do.  I was surprised to find that I had three crates of parts I don't need any more and three of those that I need to clean up!  Most of the parts are for the doors (hinges, latches, linkages, window actuators, etc.).

What was a real surprise was a box I found that the original owner gave me with the car.  He had been buying some replacement parts when he owned the car and I found a bunch of turn signal, side marker and tail light lenses that I forgot I had.  I had bought some myself over the last couple of years, forgetting I had these, so now I have more spares then I need.

A nice surprise was a set of B-pillar courtesy light lenses.  I got into a bidding war on eBay over a set of these, which thankfully I lost.  Otherwise, I'd have another set of these since I forgot that I had a set already!

The real find was the special backup light lens I have been looking for but have not been able to find.  Let me explain. Unlike modern cars, the tail light lens on the early Series 1 cars do not have reflectors built into them.  To meet the requirement for reflectors, the early cars had a backup light lens that had a red reflector recessed into it.  This is uses on some European spec cars too.  This did not meet later US requirements, so Jaguar replaced the back up light lens with a pure clear (white) one and mounted a red reflector on a big block of rubber right underneath the taillight.  I never liked this because it really spoils the flow of the curve around the fender, which is one of the subtle shapes that make the car so appealing.  So, I've been looking (on and off) for the backup light lens that have the red reflector, but have had very little luck finding one.  Well, you can just image my surprise to find a set of lenses sitting in a box in my garage, totally forgotten about!
'68 Series 1 with reflector in backup lens

My car with clear backup lens and reflector below the taillight.

So, I'm at a point that there really isn't much more I can do on the car short of sending it to the paint shop.  I think I'm going to pull the gas tanks out one more time so that they can paint inside that area and not get red paint all over the tanks.  Less masking to do also.  Now I need to make a choice.  Have the paint shop do the entire paint job, or have the car towed back after the primer is put on and spend several months block sanding the car.  I'm starting to lean toward having them do the whole job.  More expensive, but I don't know if I can sand the car for a forth time!

Monday, June 2, 2014

More Wiring!

Dateline - 05/31/2014 - Last post I said that I needed to reroute some of the wiring because there wasn't enough room to put in the center gauges.  Well, that is what I did this weekend. I unlaced a bunch of wire bundles and moved the wires so they run toward the front of the dash and over the top, instead of down along the bottom of the instrument panel.  This gave me enough room for the gauges.   So hopefully that's the last of the wiring I'll need to fiddle with, at least until I get the car back from paint.

Since I had the dash pieces installed, I was wondering what it would look like with the carpets.  So I pulled out the box and laid out the carpets as best I could.  Some of them need to be cut to fit, and I wasn't going to do that yet, but at least you get a feel for what it will look like!

Interior from rear window

Interior driver side

Interior passenger side

A couple of things I have been working on over the week have been finishing up the center console carbon fiber work.  I needed to put some more epoxy on the some of the low spots and fill in some areas, and of course, sand most of it back off.  I'm pretty close, but I still need to do a bit more touch-up before it will be ready for the final coats of lacquer. It's getting close though.

And finally, I've glued the last piece of maple veneer to the center gauge cluster dash piece.  I will need to take that to Matt's to have him sand it down flush with the rest of the piece.  I will then cut it to fit and I should be close to ready for final dash finishing.