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Next project - 38 fiat topolino

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by maddog, Mar 22, 2007.

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  1. Zoomer
    Joined: May 15, 2009
    Posts: 222

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    ok how about some body work pics.... since the engine is so wide and the car is so narrow at the front I decide to weld the nose of the car to the body and then slice it off 12" closer to the windshield, then build an inner frame that lets the nose slide on (and off) and be secured with button head cap screws. I also welded in an edge around the "engine" compartment to clean up the rough edges the rod came with.... I trimmed the front wheel openings and welded in steel rod along the new edge to give rigidity and a nice rolled lip.... once that was done I went sort of nuts straightening out the body.. which by the way did not have one square 1" that was without a dent ding or ripple...

    here's all the above mentioned work prior to bodywork... I'll break down the steps in the following post
     

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  2. Zoomer
    Joined: May 15, 2009
    Posts: 222

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    pic #1 is removing the slag cut that was done on the engine bay when I got the rod
    pic #2 is the inner frame sturcture I put in under the sheetmetal for strength
    pic #3 under the UPPER vice grip you can see the "jigsaw" effect for the slip fit and below that is the main attachment plate... you can also see more of the frame that encircles the engine bay under the sheetmetal
    pic #4 is taken from the drivers side rear of the engine bay to the pass side front corner..
     

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  3. Zoomer
    Joined: May 15, 2009
    Posts: 222

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    pic #1 shows the new split line when the front end slides on to the body on the drivers side
    pic #2 same for the passenger side
    pic #3 shows what I trimmed off the wheel opening along with the steel rod I used for a new rolled edge
    pic #4 an inside view of the new fender lip
     

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  4. Zoomer
    Joined: May 15, 2009
    Posts: 222

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    pic #1 I was setting the door bottom on the pass side and noticed that the door frame opening was too small for the door and from the looks of the panel the door had been closing with the lip outside the jam area.... sooo I split the panel that is forward of the door which also holds the blinker assembly.... I also had to split the door jam area itself to move the jam and make it longer then fab in metal to close the gaps I created.. this pic shows on the right side the blinker panel moved forward over itself to make more gap, as well as the split into the jam, and the lower part of the door skin removed

    pic #2 shows tack welds where I had to split the panel as well as how the door to panel and the vent door fit.... the vent doors are tricky because you need height to clear the panel as they open over it but you also want a tight fit and the panel heights to be the same

    pic #3 this shows the vent door gapped and height adjusted as well as bodywork on the door.... on a body that is curved from top to bottom and also curved from front to back AND has dents and waves all over it I do my bodywork like this;

    I adjust the panels as close as I can and then I spread a skim coat across the entire panel... yea even across the door gap (forgetting about the door gaps allows you to be working ONE panel instead of seperate panels, this allows all your heights to be perfect and the panel fitment to also be perfect) lots of guys freak out about this but when they see the end result they usually end up following suit... it just makes for straighter panels (check the 1059 el camino I posted earlier in the blog)

    I block the filler until metal starts to pop thru then I spread another skim coat but with a different color hardener... I repeat this process until the panels are straight, with that achieved I use a 3" angle grinder with a cut off wheel and run it along the edge of the door panel to free the door, then I fold sand paper to the thickness I want my door gap to be and sand the cut wider, this allows for a measured consistant gap all the way around the panel. Since the side of the car was blocked as one, (once you free the door) when you look down the side of the body the door line disappears... the last step is to remove the door and do finish work inside the door jam itself

    so you can see the different colors of filler, some areas where metal is started to come thru and some darker areas where the metal is just under the surface. this allows for minimum filler to achieve a straight panel, of course having spent decades straightening panels, chopping tops, fabbing panels does help this process...

    pic #4 this pic is taken on the drivers side looking back towards the vent door.... it shows the engine bay sheetmetal edge rolled in, the new fender lip.. which has its thickness controlled to a minimum... and the belt line accent being worked straight

    pic #5 shows the vent door gapped... the gap at the rear is 1/16" wider to accomodate for the door opening "over" the panel behind it.. you can see stell popping thru the bodywork in 3 of the 4 corners of the vent door as well as near the door lock area.... so while there is filler all over the body it is minimal in thickness.
     

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    Last edited: Aug 26, 2010
  5. GaryB
    Joined: Dec 19, 2008
    Posts: 3,530

    GaryB
    Member
    from Reno,nv

    it's one bitch'in HOTROD
     
  6. Zoomer
    Joined: May 15, 2009
    Posts: 222

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    pic #1 shows the pass door reworked and gapped as well as the vent door gapped... notice how the panels flow into each other... you can also see the panels I fabbed in for the "slip fit" front end to body attachment.. I mirrored the body panel with a lower support panel.

    pic #2 same as pic #1 but the drivers side which also gives a better view of the door fitment

    pic #3 shows the slip fit joint getting closer to primer

    pic #4 drivers side showing how the door line disappears and how the vent panel also fits
     

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  7. Zoomer
    Joined: May 15, 2009
    Posts: 222

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    pic #1 I got tired of waiting to get into my friends spray booth sooo I converted my garage into a booth.. here's the frame getting ready for primer (I used PCL which is a high build, catalyzed primer. It gets really hard, seals well, and sands easily) and yes if you look closely at the joints that is bodywork you see there (I wore my fingers out)

    pic #2 and now it, as everything else.. is black

    pic #3 rearend in the foreground, fuel cell in the background.... and off to the left is the front end that was shot the day before and covered (not a lot of space when everything is taken apart)

    pic #4 the little hot rod in primer (I'm going to start blocking it this week as it has been curing for several months I think) after that I'll spray it with a satin black...

    over the frame before I started assembly I sprayed a couple of coats of high heat paint, the same as the engine.... why? glad you asked, not only does it match great but this brand does NOT leave overspray... yep you can spray the corner of a valve cover if you scuff it and it just blends right in, amazing.. also if you rub on the high heat paint it does NOT mark.. since I knew I would be doing mods to the frame ie: welding on brackets etc. I wanted something to cover that would blend... it was a fluke that really turned out to be amazing. now I find out that several Nascar teams use this paint the same way, ALL thier under hood under body parts....
     

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    Last edited: Aug 26, 2010
  8. claymore
    Joined: Feb 21, 2009
    Posts: 896

    claymore
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    You spend a lot of time doing a fantastic job of getting it straight and perfect door alignment and body panel work and are going to let it out the door with a SATIN finish??? Some things just don't make any sense anymore.
     
  9. Zoomer
    Joined: May 15, 2009
    Posts: 222

    Zoomer
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    why the satin finish? well, I just don't think topos look that good shiny, and, straight panels and well gaped panels always show.... AND.. this is really just the
    prefit stage of this project. The plan has always been to build it, then drive it for 6 months to make sure everything is as I want it to be, then take it all apart and paint everything....

    however, I appreciate the kind words, all the kind words that you guys have recently posted.

    I'll post some engine fab parts tomorrow ie: the overflow tank, pcv valve, breather vent, trans vent, dipstick tube, trans lines brackets and misc stuff.

    over the weekend I'll post the fuel lines, brakes lines, trans lines, battery mount, battery cable, and misc...

    after that there is the interior work ie: the tunnel, the floors, the seats, the harnesses, the head rests, the shifter, the switches, the wiring (85% complete), sound proofing, steering wheel, e brake, etc.
     
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2010
  10. Zoomer
    Joined: May 15, 2009
    Posts: 222

    Zoomer
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    teaser
     

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  11. GaryB
    Joined: Dec 19, 2008
    Posts: 3,530

    GaryB
    Member
    from Reno,nv

    its just badass.
     
  12. Zoomer
    Joined: May 15, 2009
    Posts: 222

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    the next few posts are some engine/trans details

    "the overflow tank"

    pic #1 I took an old fire extinguisher and cut about 4" off the end, then I had my machinist mill up an end cap I designed along with a set of rings

    pic #2 shows the mounting cage

    pic #3 shows inside the end cap

    pic #4 shows the inlet on the side and the top and bottom fitting that will
    have a hose attached so I can see the water level outside the tank

    pic #5 in black with the viewing tube installed

    pic # 6 installed.... hangs off the motor mount under the drivers side head
     

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  13. Zoomer
    Joined: May 15, 2009
    Posts: 222

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    "pcv valve"

    I was trying to figure out how to put the pcv valve in the center of this old style oil cap but the center of the cap had a big rivot holder the 5 parts together... soooo

    pic #1 I bought two old style oil caps that 1/2 twist tight into the valve cover. I machined 6 holes thru this one and into a sleave

    pic #2 the sleeve, which also holds a pcv valve, (once the sleeve was screwed to the oil cap the center large rivot that held all the parts of the
    oil cap together was drilled out)

    pic #3 with pcv (epoxy seals around the outer wall of the pcv)

    pic #4 on the passenger side I had to put a block plate in this breather
    so the pcv would pull from across the engine

    pic #5 shows the sleeve with the pcv installed, bolted to the oil cap, with
    the vaccuum line attached which runs thru yet another fabbed bracket
     

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    Last edited: Aug 30, 2010
  14. Zoomer
    Joined: May 15, 2009
    Posts: 222

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    "breathers"

    pic #1 another oil cap.... I had a fitting machined that also takes 6 screws to hold it to the oil cap and then have the center rivot drilled out... a nice fitting and a weave fabric covered hose

    pic #2 runs across the valve cover to the two small air filters

    pic #3 a tab is welded to the frame, the filter mounting plate is screwed to it from the under side... the filter on the right is to the valve cover, the filter to the left goes to the breather on top of the trans case. typically you never need a filter for the trans breather but if they ever puke some oil its a mess... the valve cover breather is also a bit of over kill but I really like the look although it did end up being a bit costly by the time it was finished with the three fittings , the hose, the filter, the machining...
    did I mention I like the way it looks?

    pic #4 the bracket behind the filters is for the throttle cable and while it looks odd hanging out there in space from this angle it really isn't
     

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  15. claymore
    Joined: Feb 21, 2009
    Posts: 896

    claymore
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    That is some great thinking using the twist cap to hold the PCV valve killing two birds with one stone.
     
  16. Zoomer
    Joined: May 15, 2009
    Posts: 222

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    "oil dipstick"

    when I built the pan I didn't think about where the dipstick tube would be.... right behind the motor mount duh so I bent this tube and then designed up an end that sat over the stub coming out of the pan and the tube fit in the other end, then designed up a fitting for the other end that took a lokar dipstick handle... I then used an old "tape" style lokar trans dipstick for the actual stick... of course I had to buy a stock chevy tube and stick and do some math so the point that it reads as full would be the same.... sounds simple as I write it but it was a hassle

    pic #1 tube with top fitting and handle
    pic #2 bottom end fitting and tube.. the stub from the pan is flaired so the recess in the part is to cover the flaired end
    pic #3 complete assembly
    pic #4 top end
    pic #5 installed at pan
    pic #6 mounted on block
     

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  17. Zoomer
    Joined: May 15, 2009
    Posts: 222

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    "trans lines and brackets"

    a few brackets I had to fab to hold things in place

    pic #1 this bracket mounts on the drivers side of the trans pan, I had to use these studs instead of bolts.... the clamp is store bought. by the way.. I buy all my clamps, fittings, hoses, nuts, bolts, washers etc. and every other hard to find part at DMP fasteners:

    http://dmpfasteners.com/


    pic #2 shown with clamp on bracket

    pic #3 not a great pic... frame in the foreground, brake booster to the left, bracket in the shadow but you can see the trans lines to the cooler with the nice seperation between them

    pic #4 this bracket mounts on the front of the trans pan... the clamp is a store bought with some "adjustment"

    pic #5 assembled

    pic #6 out of the trans case and down under and across the front of the pan

    pic #7 shows both clamps, down across the front then seperation for the line fittings
     

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  18. Zoomer
    Joined: May 15, 2009
    Posts: 222

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    I painted the headers black but it was too much and really blinded you to looking at the trick stuff behind them on the engine, a few rags and some lacquer thinner... raw metal again... I was able to find "clear" high heat paint, so thats the new direction.

    was hoping to fire the engine today however thru a series of oddities with the electrical system... my bro diagnosed for an hour and concluded that the alternators diods where bad and it was sending power back thru the system and making the "keyed" hot side of the fuse block hot while bypassing the ignition switch.... of course we torn into the fuse block, drew up a schematic and then back traced everything... then put it all back together after figuring it out and then recreated the problem so he could verify that actually was the problem... funny how new parts don't always mean they are good....

    we ran system checks on the trans fan, ok... the radiator fans, ok... the fuel pump, ok... the electric water pump, ok... the over ride switches, ok... the security functions, ok...

    a few things to handle in the morning and then "fire in the hole"...

    finally came up with a good design for the wheelie bar...


    what's next? all the lines, brakes, trans, water, fuel
    suspension changes
    a bunch of cool fabbed stuff ie: battery mount
    steering wheel
    throttle pedal
    brake pedal
    filter mounts (shown in earlier post)
    fuel sender/inlet neck
     
  19. Zoomer
    Joined: May 15, 2009
    Posts: 222

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    twist the key and it fires to life with a burst of flames out the pipes....

    20 minutes at 2300rpm to break in the cam.. in the garage with ear plugs within 1 ft of my brother screaming to communicate and still can't hear a thing.. : ) AWESOME

    fans come on at 170 degrees and keep it at 190 degrees... after shutdown I leave it on accessory so the waterpump stays on as do the fans, I have an override switch to keep the fans on if I want (really there in case the thermostat switch goes bad) running the pump and the fans takes it down from 170 to under 100 in less than 5 minutes.

    did the 20 mins in 2 10 min sessions (had an overflow line with a pin hole start pissing once pressure was built.. while we stopped to address that I noticed that I really should have wrapped the upper part of the pipes with heat wrap (which I have) BEFORE running it as my slick little plug wire seperators fell victim to the heat, (two of them are gone, 2 others are "modified" : ) second 10 mins had the pipes wrapped, no further heat shrinkage....

    changed the front shocks ( 1" shorter ) as well as the front coils (went from 14" @ 225psi to 12" @ 250psi) also changed the rear coils back to 12"@150 (had bought 12" @130, but they seemed a bit soft)

    Running QA1 shocks and springs which have 12 different metering adjustments on a dial... now I can calculate the length of my limiting straps and get them mounted.

    Think I have the air cleaner sort of mapped out, need to buy some 5" tube for a mold mockup and some 4# foam... thinking of making something from carbon fiber / kevlar weave... only thinking it currently... will have more pics up in a day or two
     
  20. jfrolka
    Joined: Oct 4, 2007
    Posts: 897

    jfrolka
    Member

    way fuckin awesome!! i remember seeing this thing when it was first mocked.. you took it to a whole different level, bad ass!!!!!
     
  21. jfrolka
    Joined: Oct 4, 2007
    Posts: 897

    jfrolka
    Member

  22. Really nice work, a little more info on the radiator / cooling system please.
     
  23. Zoomer
    Joined: May 15, 2009
    Posts: 222

    Zoomer
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    ok here's the 411 on the cooling system

    I designed a dual passs radiator... the water goes in and out on the same side but half way down the side tank is a block which forces the water to fill the top half of the radiator then travel across the fins, then drop down to the bottom half of the radiator and pass back across the fins... I had Ron Davis radiators build it. 30" x 3" x 17".

    I bend 1 7/8" .075 wall tubing and ran it from the engine to the radiator and back .. running it thru the cross framerails and making sure that none of it is below the frame. I used a hardened plastic mixture to coat the inside of all the tubes.

    I am running a Moroso hi volume electric water pump... The inlet on the intake manifold has a radiator cap on a plate instead of the normal water neck... and I designed and machined a tight 90 degree neck that I then welded into the front of the intake manifold.. (you can see a pic of this along with the water plumbing and the radiator mounts earlier in the blog.. I picked up the little rod on page 5 and ran with it) I did this to keep the water inlet below my hood line.

    I have two 14" "pull" electric fans that move 4000cfm (an amazing volume of air) that are thermostatically controlled. Also runnning a fan over ride switch if the thermostat switch fails. Have a petcock in the bottom of one tube and a slick over flow tank (posted last week).... all the tubes are bolted up with rubber mounts throughout...

    4 gallons of antifreeze and 5 gallons of distilled water....

    I think that covers it.... any other info I missed that you are curious about?
     
  24. Zoomer
    Joined: May 15, 2009
    Posts: 222

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    700 horse? hmmm your the closest guess so far... actually, you're the only guess so far. thanks for the support.

    fabbed the e brake handle support yesterday and ran the cables today (all mounted and tight along the frame as with every other line on the car... it works really good. set it just inside the door jam between the seat and the roll cage. had to do some distributor tweeking, the advance springs were worn out and it was running 30 degrees advance at idle, no bueno... with the new springs and the reset of the advance curve we have it idling nicely, well...... it can idle at 1050-1100 rpm... for now... the cam is to big to allow for less and I have yet to put it in gear to see what the trans load is going to do to the idle, thinking 1250 might have to be th enew number.

    pedals are in for good, firewall went in today... figure the rolling chasis can be wrapped up by next weekend.... and being test driven, then another week to get the body into some sort of paint and mounted, and another week or two with odds and ends.... famous last words
     
  25. Richard/SIA
    Joined: Mar 22, 2010
    Posts: 246

    Richard/SIA
    Member
    from No. Nevada

    Please put the pics up at the 59-60 El Camino group!
    http://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/group.php?groupid=220

    Build hints would be great too, there has been discussion on other forums as to weather this was even possible.

    Yes, I am gathering parts for my own 59 El Camino build.
    Not so modern as yours, but one of a kind.
     
  26. Zoomer
    Joined: May 15, 2009
    Posts: 222

    Zoomer
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    tried to post but the elcamino forum is members only... tried to join it but no luck, oh well. best of luck with your project, hope the number I sent you is helpful on the journey.
     
  27. Richard/SIA
    Joined: Mar 22, 2010
    Posts: 246

    Richard/SIA
    Member
    from No. Nevada

    I found it a little tricky to hit the right buttons to join too.
    Finally figured it out.

    I think you can post the pics easy after putting them into an album created to go with your member profile.
    I'm still learning my way around this site.
     
  28. Zoomer
    Joined: May 15, 2009
    Posts: 222

    Zoomer
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    ok back at the blog

    here's a few fabrication pics
    pic #1 #2 #3 are the battery box I built and welded to the frame (the battery is an Odyssey, they license their technology to Optima.... mine has 1200 amps)

    pic #4 is the filler neck I built (somewhere I have another beginning pic)
    (there's a bag filter safety wired to the bottom of the inlet tube, the next fitting is for the carbon canister, the sending unit is for marine purposes)

    pic #5 is the trans dipstick tube side view (both sides of the fire wall)
    the tube and the stick itself had to be shortened.... something lokar frowns on for some dumb reason)
     

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    Last edited: Sep 9, 2010
  29. Zoomer
    Joined: May 15, 2009
    Posts: 222

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    the throttle pedal... I bought it from lokar and have to say it was a mess. when mounted the pedal had side to side slop of 3/8" and the pedal was binding so I took it apart...

    pic#1 shows the pedal assembled and mounted
    pic#2 shows the parts laid out... from the left of the picture.. the collar with the mounting tabs was out of round from the heat of welding the tabs to it, the gold bushing was also out of round. The space from the outside diameter of the gold bushing to the inside diameter of the black busings was 0.009 when you are running pivot tension thru a part like much like a bearing you have to be closer to 0.001 so there is no binding thru the pivot point. I had to hone the mounting part with the tabs, I took a surface cut across the gold part, then I machined new black bushings cutting the free space down to 0.001... now the part works great. I called Lokar and talked to an engineer and got nothing but an earful of grief like I didn't know what the fuck I was talking about... so... I explained the problem, pointed out how I thought they produced the part and the simple fix they ought to implement... "well no one else has complained about it".. yeah well most people just assume you guys know what you are doing and don't make mistakes. I have no idea if they will fix the problem.

    pics #3 #4 #5 are the template, the support made, and the assembly bolted together
     

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  30. Zoomer
    Joined: May 15, 2009
    Posts: 222

    Zoomer
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    front suspension changes

    if you look back several pages you'll see the cool collars i fabbed for the lower shock mounts... well, they had to go. the shocks I got with the car (that were supposedly "just rebuilt", literally had the piston fall out of one of them) needed to be replaced. they had posts at both ends for mounting and today shocks are eyelets at both ends. I was able to get the top eyelets changed to posts but the extra bracket at the bottom to convert post to eyelet raised the car 1" and it looked lousy to I cut the collar mounting part off (leaving the collar around the arm) and fabbed new mouting points designed to use an eyelet shock.

    After fabbing the new mounts I went with a 1" shorter shock and a 2" shorter spring. The springs I got the first time out were 14" in length and 225# psi, the problem was I had no adjustment to lower the car only to raise the car... the shock piston was half way out at ride height which is correct, and, the 14" springs tend to have a slight bend from top to bottom... what? words from the tech guy. now I am using 12" @ 245psi springs and I have room on the shock body to adjust the ride height up and down.

    He kept telling me that even with the shorter shock I was to run the longer spring, huh? all that does it extend the shock piston out farther and keep the ride height the same length.... he didn't get it, the tech guy for the shock company didn't get it... he also was concerned I would unseat the springs.. huh? if the spring at ride height compresses 2 1/4" and the shock piston has another 3 1/4" of travel at ride height the anything more than 2 1/4" of travel will unseat the spring... right? "uhhhh that's why you need the longer spring"... wow you're really the tech guy? remember in the beginning when I said the car will be lifting the front wheels off the ground?.... in the end I told him that the language he might want to add to his script is "if you are going to lift the front end off the ground you'll need to install suspension limiting straps"... he did NOT appreciate our conversation.

    pic#1 I thought I would be lazy and drill a cotter key hole with a drill thru the castle nut to avoid removing the bolt.... yeah brain fart of the first degree.... $50 later my machinist has a new bolt for me.

    pic #2 first cut
    pic #3 out with the old
    pic #4 in with the new
    pic #5 the marked hole will be used for the limiting strap
    pic #6 second times the charm?
     

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