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8. Coming together

Spent most of the evenings during the week getting all the parts together for the front and rear suspension, cleaning and painting a number of smaller parts too. The citric acid bucket doing its magic again. Made life easier that I had organised all small parts and fasteners into labelled bags when the car was taken apart 18 months ago too.

So on Friday evening I started with the rear twist beam. All went together as planned, no issues.

Rear Twist Beam Spec:
  • AST 5100 Coilovers
  • Powerflex black series top mount bush (Top side mounted inside roll cage rear corner node)
  • PMS stiffener kit
  • PMS spherical bearing conversion
  • PMS camber shim 20’
  • PMS 10mm stub axle spacer
  • PMS 75mm wheel studs
  • Brembo standard discs
  • Refurbed OEM brakes using the Bigg red kit
  • Ferodo Racing DS2500 pads

Got a bit carried away and started working on the front in the evening. Changed the steering arms/track rods for new ones. Blocked the power steering holes on the column part of the rack and looped the two on the rack itself using some brake line. Changed the old bushes out for powerflex black series and bolted it up to the frame, same treatment for the ARB, powerflex black series bushes. However I had to remove a fair bit of material from the outside of the ARB to frame bush to make it fit, hopefully judged it right, felt about right once tightened up.

Then set about adding the coilovers to the front uprights. Really like the AST setup on the coilovers, lower bolt hole has the offset adaptor to convert between 56 and 60mm spacing and then has the built in camber adjustment slots.

Should mention we bought the ASTs second hand so didn’t have a choice on the spring rates, so possibly will need to change them at a later date but I am sure they will be perfect to start with and worth it for the price we got them for. Added the PMS castor adjustable top mounts and then attached the front struts/uprights to the car.

Hoping the strut brace isn’t going to clash with the engine. Hopefully will find out next weekend. Control arms still to do on Sunday morning which didn’t go to plan!

So this morning (Sunday) i had planned to pop the lower control arms in. I had welded these together some time ago and never thought they would be a problem. However encountered this when inserting the bearing adapters into the clevis joints.The distance between the Pt3 and Pt4 hard point (Front and rearward control arm hard point) was about 3-4mm too large. This was the case for both left and right hand side. Checked a few different things it could have been such as the frame being out but tried a new set of OEM control arms and they fitted perfectly, measured the width of the control arm pressings compared to new OEM which were identical. So it was certainly the weld in bearing housing was in the wrong place. I had pushed the bearing housing hard up against the control arm pressing as it says in the PMS instructions/guide but really I needed to hold them off by 2mm on both housings. So also pretty annoyed at myself for not measuring and checking this when I welded them in months ago.

However, I am rather impatient and wanted it sorting on the day so decided to remove 1.5mm of material from the outer bearing adaptors. Worked a treat, just had to space the other side of the joint out with a washer so the clevis clamp up gap wasn’t too big. Will see what Nick at PMS has to say on Monday. Will be fine for the time being but will want to re make the control arms or have custom bearing adaptors/spaces made. Also need to order some new bolts to replace the originals. (Picture below is form the RHS, previous picture of the LHS, but both had the same problem and the same temporary resolution).

But on the whole if that’s the biggest problem I encounter, I’ll be pretty happy.

Need to get some M8 countersunk screws/bolts for the brake discs with as I haven’t got any spacers at the moment a normal bolt has space to fit with the wheel.I decided I wanted to get the car on the ground so put the seat and steering column in so that I could sit in it on the drive and make the customary engine noises. Hadn’t had the seat and steering column in the car and forgot how good the steering wheel position is. Was worth a lot of messing around and measuring many times to get it in the correct place. Still may need to use a steering wheel spacer to alter the position for James and I (3-4 inches height difference isn’t ideal for sharing a driving position).Been waiting for this moment for a long time time, but finally could put the wheels on and roll the car out the garage.
Delighted with the progress this weekend. Next job is to get the engine in, hoping for another big weekend.

Front suspension spec:

  • AST 5100 coilovers
  • Power steering removed

  • PMS Front wishbone bearing kit
  • PMS stiffener plates
  • PMS weld in castor adjustable top mounts
  • PMS strut brace
  • Powerflex Black Series ARB bushes
  • Powerflex Black Series steering rack bushes
  • Brembo standard brake discs
  • Ferodo Racing DS2500 pads
  • PMS wheel studs
Previous article 9. Radiator/Control Panel/Alternator Tensioner
Next article 7. Painting finished

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