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Kitcar Build

Kitcar Blog

This blog is to cover out progress through the stages of the strip down and rebuild of a robin hood kit car.
Started the blog a bit late as a fair bit of the stripdown has already been done, this is to follow our progress of the build.

Get your finger out Manley

Other bits Posted on Sun, November 06, 2011 16:35:42

Its been a couple of months now since the car was moved, and as yet its been in neal’s garage covered in junk!

Come on manley, get the clutch parts and lets get it sorted!

Day from hell!

Other bits Posted on Wed, May 04, 2011 12:41:41

Definitely the worst day we have had so far on this build, nothing seems to have gone right

Started by rebuilding the dash, which is now on its mk4 connotation

The original one is at the top, which had original analogue instruments, which we decided to bin as they just were not bright enough in the dark, even if we fitted LED backlights… not good.

We then decided to fabricate it out of steel to stop flex, but then binned that idea.

I couldn’t drill any holes in the dash because we had no drill or any bits, which meant a trip to screwfix to collect supplies. We also picked up new connectors for the switchgear and some new 2 amp equipment wire to link them all in. This turned into a 2hr trip. Also picked up some sparco pedal grips.

Then on to the MDF (third down) which was going well until the holes drilled in the bottom edge for the switches were too big, they should be 22mm not 25mm, not mentioning any names as to who’s suggestion the size was…

This has lead on to dashboard mk4 (the plywood one) which has not progressed too far at present because we still need to locate the correct holesaws, which Neal must have somewhere as he used them on dash mk1. Hopefully he’ll find them somewhere.

So for all yesterday, all I managed to do was get in the water temp sensor for the new digital dash:

Route the wires for it and the oil temp into the cabin and wire in some of the new harness into the old one.

I have now tested the new digital dash and it works in a preliminary sense, although we still have a way to go before proper testing can be carried out.

Forgot to mention the other disasters of yesterday:

I broke the wheelarch liner of a mini (we had to change the brake pads on Neal’s girlfriends car)

Knelt on a brake pad (hurt more than I can describe)

Neal almost ran me over with the mini and drove over a pot of copperease in the process

One of the rear wings for the kitcar fell on to the floor, picking up a bit of damage

Still can’t get the steering column back in as the engineering firm haven’t turned the surround yet. If you’re wondering why we have removed the column, keep checking back as we’ll write up that odyssey when we have progressed further.

This just about sums up yesterday’s progress…

Neal’s uphill struggle

Body Posted on Wed, May 04, 2011 12:21:53

So on to the bodywork now, which I am leaving to Neal, as I’m next to useless at it.

This is what the car & colour looked like before starting, (minus the rear wings)

Note the stainless between the nose and the suspension components, this is being removed and re fabricated in GRP

Off comes the nose cone

The stainless is more visible now to the right and through the nose, it’s fit was quite poor so we have created a better fitting template from steel to use to cut the GRP when its been fabricated by Neal.

Here is the first stage of GRP matting applied over the old stainless

After several more layers were added, the old stainless was removed and the whole lot strengthened from inside by layering more matting. The lower piece of stainless was retained and glassed in to give some good mounting points and extra strength.

Neal sanding down the matting ready for body filler

Applying the body filler

Now we’ve run out of filler so cant continue for the time being….

Throttle and Starter

Engine Posted on Wed, May 04, 2011 12:01:26

The original throttle cable was originally supported by an oddly bent piece of stainless steel which had an undesirable amount of additional movement so I decided to fabricate a new support plate (below) to hold the pedal solid, and we then cut down the length of the cable and attached it to the pedal box housing.

We also have issues with the starter motor, for some reason it is not engaging correctly, some times taking 4 or 5 attempts to actually crank the engine.

I stripped the motor down and checked and cleaned all the components, and could not see any visible damage, maybe the solenoid has just become weak or there is not enough current to engage the starter gear properly, we have no way to tell as we do not have a spare starter to compare it to.

The starter in all its component parts

Mid Assembly

Even after the overhaul, its still not working correctly, we’re still deciding what to do about it…


Body Posted on Wed, March 16, 2011 12:48:53

Now onto the carpets.

Neal had already fitted some insulation to the inner part of the car, and now it was time to fit the carpets and the checkerplate wear plates, we also fitted a sheet of aluminium to the tunnel to the left of the clutch pedal in order to eliminate wear on the carpet.

Before and During (minus the checkerplate)

Neal measuring the floor plate

The finished article, the plate is riveted through the carpet into the stainless floorpan, as is the clutch wear plate to the left of the pedal, which can be seen here.

Diff Strengthening pt 2

Body Posted on Wed, March 16, 2011 12:27:33

Now that we had trial fitted the diff strengthener I decided to paint it in blue (the only paint we had) before fitting it.

For some reason I managed to use a whole can of spray paint and not even get it fully coated, not sure why that was….

Had to relocate the fuel feed pipe as the existing hole was right next to the strengthening beam (can just see it to the left of the drill) so we relocated and shortened the pipe, and also properly grommetted the hole.

All fitted and bolted up, note the new fuel pipe hole

Diff Strengthening pt 1

Body Posted on Wed, March 16, 2011 12:04:22

After jacking up the car and seeing that the diff was only bolted to the boot floor and moved all over the place we decided to strengthen it.

We found some steel channel and used that to fabricate a H section that was secured to the inner wings and the rear panel, and bolted through into the diff mount.

This has tightened up the whole bootfloor and diff mount.

The spraying job wasn’t too brilliant I must say, but then again I’m not that great at painting.

Fabricating of the diff strengthener:

Test fitment into the car…

Video Update

Other bits Posted on Sun, February 13, 2011 22:38:04

A story in pictures…






Car moves, speedo doesn’t…

Other bits Posted on Mon, February 07, 2011 23:20:06

s Neal has mentioned, we took the car out for a run only to discover that the speedometer did not work.

This is particularly painful because Neal spent a while riveting in the top of the transmission tunnel, only for us to have to remove all the rivets to gain access to the speedo drive.

At this stage I assumed the worst, thinking that the speedo drive must be faulty, as I was sure we got the cable well seated into the gearbox, which was a pain, because the drive housing is angled down and access is only available from above using a mirror to be able to see the union.

We stripped it all out, and hoped for the best, the other option was to either remove the gearbox/engine which would have been a royal pain in the ass, or to fit an electronic speedo with magnetic pickup.

The electronic speedo would have been over £200 so Neal was keen to get the speedo working. Understandable really I guess.

After some intensive fiddling, he managed to get the cable re-seated, and we tested the drive by propping the car up and running it in gear (with wheels spinning) to check the cable was rotating.


Removing the tunnel lid


Neal taking a spin


Engine Run Up

Engine Posted on Mon, May 17, 2010 10:29:59

Now Neal has finished the wiring, we ran the engine up (on saturday)


Watch Neal scarper….


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