My first day on the MG since the decision to go ahead with respray with Reef of Trowbridge. This decision puts a different focus on the work as I am now not doing any more work on the paint and I am concentrating on removing more fittings ready for soda-blasting. Even after having had the vehicle for ten months, there are still fittings to be removed, for example the headlining, which will not survive the soda-blasting, door fittings, windscreen washers and the fascia.
However, this afternoon’s work commenced with a tidy up of the garage which of course is the household dumping ground so needs regular attention to prevent too much build up of rubbish. I filled a box with crap and put it outside for a later run to the recycling centre along with an old bed we were getting rid of. I then looked at the feasibility of mounting the engine on its stand, however there were two issues with this. First that the bolts I had bought (replacement gearbox fixing bolts) were a bit marginal in length and secondly that the engine will not sit on the mount unless the clutch is removed. Being unable to address either of these two issues today, I decided that what I would do was to lift the engine off the pallet it is currently sat on which seems to just trip me up and see if I could stick it closer to the wall of the garage out of way. I erected the engine crane and managed a bit of a better configuration of crane, stand and engine. Without going into boring details, I am reminded that all three are incredibly heavy and cumbersome objects to manoeuvre.
[run to the recycling centre].
I now ‘treated’ myself to a job I have been meaning to do for a while, the removal of the front valance. This panel, subject to more extreme exposure that other parts of the body, is rusty and a bit bent in places so I wanted to remove it so it could be inspected with a view to deciding on whether to replace it or not. A new valance is around £80, so it may be just as well to buy a new panel in time for the respray. I have previously discussed with the painter that it needs doing in stone-chip resistant paint so it preserves its finish for longer. Removal was a simple job of undoing a few bolts and then removing the bumper brackets. All bolts bar one came off nicely – one had a rusty housing and so came away with a bit of the bodywork so that will need to be fixed as a bodywork repair.
Another job I had wanted to do since the respray decision was to bolt the hatch back in. I had removed the hatch for paint experiments, but it was subsequently loosely placed in the aperture which is a bit unsafe. I found the bolts (in a labelled envelope!) and loosely put them back in. I didn’t bother to tighten them – one, because its a really fiddly angle, and two, because when it is painted the hatch will be coming off again so there seemed little point.
While in the vehicle I had a look at the door handle mechanism as this will need to be removed. This looks a relatively straightforward if long-winded job which I will tackle in the coming weeks. The important thing will be keep all the little bits and pieces in the right place for reassembly. In the build phase I will need to decide whether to use new fittings. The chrome door handles are pitted and I don’t think there is any way back from that, so I think new handles are in order. I am not sure of the cost of these, but it will be fun shopping around and maybe some auto-jumbles will have some at a reasonable price.
I also took a look at the headlining. There are a few side trims which are probably clipped in which have to be removed before the headlining can go in, so a bit of a fiddly job, but I have plenty of time to tackle this before the respray.
While I was busy the cat made itself comfortable on the passenger seat. Maybe she is the sensible one.
Finally, to point out that the 2018 summer continues. It was mainly cloudy today with some outbreaks of sunshine, but it was another warm day, so a hot and sweaty atmosphere in the garage. What a contrast from the harsh winter when I was togged up outside. In fairness, provided one is dressed appropriately, concentration on the jobs tends to take over from concerns about the weather.