Just heard the body will be delivered this week, so decided to get the jobs done which are easier with the body off. First off better replace the Starter Motor I blew up last week.. there is a small bronze bearing bush inside the bell housing you need to replace along with the Starter Motor, (the starter motor comes with a new one), trouble is it is in a blind hole, so how to get it out ?
So I used a 12mm tap which seems to be about the right size, and wound it in carefully, then as it bottomed out the bush started to wind itself up the tap, result.. Just a simple case of now drifting in the new one with a 10mm bolt wrapped in tape with a nut and washer as the drift face. Then fitted to new starter motor no problem.
Next job fitting the floor, the Chesil Speedster uses 15mm exterior ply to give a 'flat' floor using the convenient ridge all around the inside of the Beetle floor plan. just a simple case of making up some cardboard templates and cutting to shape. The seats just bolt straight through the wooden floor with large spreader washers under the floor pan. The wheels also arrived this week, 356 replica, with 'baby' mood hub caps, just had to grid a bit off the front caliper to give enough clearance. Then fitted the throttle tube, connected up the throttle cable, and adjusted the clutch cable.
The plan is to lift the body on next Sunday, once I commandeer enough people to help with the lift..
It was then a simple case of pushing the Speedster back into the Garage, now it really is starting to look like a car.. suddenly feels like a big step forward.
Next job is fine adjustment and then bolt the subframe to the chassis using the original Beetle body fixing points.
Now's the time of truth, do the bolt holes line up with my chassis, i.e. did I cut it down to the correct length. First inspection the signs look good I can see that the bolt holes in the front of the chassis appear to be in line with the body sub frame. I was a bit worried about the fit as there is no room for error, so after jacking up the Speedster as high as my axle stands would allow I climbed underneath and to my surprise could see that all four holes lined up exactly, result !!. The 4 10mm bolts went straight in, now I could work my way around the underneath bolting the beetle chassis to the Chesil sub frame, 4 bolts at the front , 4 at the rear and 20 down the sides and across the back, job done.
It took a long while and a lot of adjustment to make sure the body sit's 'true' and level. I used the adjustable height front and rear suspension I had built in to get the wheel arches about right, knowing after a while of driving around I expect the rid height to settle down a bit then have to re-adjust.
The doors, bonnet, and boot are now 'hung' properly so next job is to spend the weekend , sanding down the flash lines and cutting back the gelcoat then polishing up with farecia G3 through to G10.