Sunday, December 21, 2014

Time to take a break from the kitchen!

Still lots to do but everything is now functional. Yesterday we got the rest of the granite in and today I built / installed the oven surround, and hooked up the ovens. I also installed my light shelf. I have been collecting blue bottles for a while with the intention of lighting them from underneath. It's time to slow down now as in my rush to get stuff done I suffered two accidents today that I could and should have avoided! The tip of my finger in the skill saw was not fun!! Thankfully, the holidays are upon us and we have a, if not complete, working kitchen! Tomorrow is pizza night since for the first time ever, I can now cook 6 pizzas at the same time! Nice!!!

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Making progress, just not on the car

Nothing new on the car as I've been spending every spare minute getting the kitchen project at least operational for the holidays. Tonight we actually didn't cook dinner on the grill and put the dishes in a dishwasher instead of the paper we have been eating off of for the last weeks. It's far from done but it has been a massive undertaking. From demoing all the old walls and ceiling to new wiring and plumbing, converting and old shower into a coffee/wine bar and adding 5 new lighting circuits. I'm tired!

Saturday, November 29, 2014

As soon as I got the car running, I dropped it to remodel the kitchen

This is my life... Not much else to say, sorry!
I'll get back to the car as soon as I have a working kitchen again!

Sunday, November 16, 2014


Big weekend!!
Huge weekend!!
She's alive!!!
Today, after 19 months of working on it, I started the car for the first time!
Still lots to do tuning and buttoning up but what an exciting weekend!!
Here's the start up struggle:
And here's another video, after a bit of tweaking:

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Close to start up day

I am getting ever so close to starting this thing that I postponed tearing into the kitchen remodel for a week. It is possible that I get this car started for the first time tomorrow. I have been plugging away at the last little details as the excitement and nervousness build. Yes, nervous! No matter what I do or don't know, it scares the crap out of me to start it the first time!! What if I missed something???
There are so many parts and I have meddled it's every last one of them!!
All that said, I did not forget to put oil in it!!

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Bit by bit and going backwards

I have been plugging away at the intake plenum when I found time this week. Over the weekend I went back to wiring, yep, sick of fiberglass work!!
I installed the tweeters in my dash and finished tidying up the wiring in the drivers footwell. Still more to do on the other side...
I installed my amp up under the dash and took it all back out today to install it under the rear package shelf

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Intake airbox cover

I started testing an idea tonight. I pulled a mold off an old Fuel Injection intake box to see how I can incorporate it into the airbox for the top of my carbs. It will take some smoothing but I should be able to build an imbossed cover that looks as though it was original. Just another fun part of the project. Stay tuned for the results...

Monday, October 27, 2014

More on the cold air intake

Now that the engine is in and carbs sitting in place, I have continued working out my cold air intake system. 
I made a paper template of the top of the carbs and also measured the available height under the hood. 
Then I laid up a bit of fiberglass and set the template in the wet resin. This way, when the resin cures, my template will be glued to it and I can cut out a perfect baseplate. With that done, I will sort out a top and tie it into the intake tube. 

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Making great progress!

But being lazy about keeping the blog up! Sorry!!
After getting the engine in I started assembling the front suspension and yesterday got the thing on the ground and rolled out of the garage on its own feet for the first time in about 20 months. It was a very exciting day to say the least. Today I installed all the cooling system components and gave it a cursory alignment. I still have to rebuild the distributor and hook up the rest of the electrical stuff before I try to start it but I am not far off! Now that will be an exciting day!!

Monday, October 20, 2014

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Vacuum advance

The original carb, or fuel injection, has a vacuum line running to the distributor for a vacuum advance. This means that as more air is drawn through the carb it advances the distributor timing. There is no provision for this in a dual carb set up so I drilled and tapped a vacuum line in each intake runner. These lines will lead to a manifold from which one line will lead to the distributor providing a constant vacuum for the advance. The dual carbs create a situation where there is a carb barrel for each cylider and it is therefore necessary to pull vacuum from each individual runner for that constant vacuum. 
In any case, I got more done today than I thought I would and maybe this beast will get under the car some evening this week. 

Linking the carbs

Today I got the two carbs all linked together and mounted on the intake manifold. It takes a little modification to get the pair working together in tight quarters. 

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Fedex delivers

This morning the top of my motor arrived and I went ballistic all day getting things assembled. Still more to do but it should be able to get it in the car next weekend! 

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Milling the intake cam box

Randy is wrapping up the work on the head and intake. He has had to mill the mating surface on the cam box to get the valve shims within tolerance. This is due to the cams I am using. Soon I will be getting the rest of the motor put together and into the car!

Saturday, October 11, 2014

You're never gonna believe this...

I found another spider in need of rescue. Actually, I found 16 but could only take one! I brought it home on Thursday but couldn't mess with it until today. After changing the distributor, plugs, wires and adding a monster fuel filter, she fired right up!! SWEET!!!
My son thinks his new car is the coolest thing in the world!! I think I finally got him interested!!
The car has a bit of racing history in the SCCA circuit in NorCal. It was prepped by Joe's Fiat Service, in Redwood City California, which has been in business since Fiats were first imported to the country. 
We will preserve the exterior as is and do a "rolling restoration". The car came with a spare motor so we can get that all built and just swap it out. We will have to get the lights and such working to drive on the street but the wonderful thing about Florida is the fact that you can register any variety of trash and drive it on public roads. 
Meanwhile back in the garage... After I spent the morning getting the new one running, I cleaned up and got things organized so I can continue on the 81. I have been slowly getting back to it and will update soon. 
Harvey, thanks for the note! Sorry I missed you! 

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Finally back in the cave

I finally got a day to play with the car!! I started fitting my oil cooler which meant cutting some stuff out of the way and welding up the areas where I cut. A little grinding and painting and it will be ready to bolt in. I also sorted out the necessary fittings to plumb the oil line to the adaptor and got those ordered. 
Finally some progress!!

Meanwhile, back at the machine shop

Randy has been making progress getting the head and intake sorted out. He is assembling the head now and it should be done fairly soon. 

Summer rush close to over

So I have punch lists on all three jobs but for the most part the crazy work schedule is finally dying down. I finished one job about 45 minutes before the owners showed up... Ouch!! 
Here's a shot of the other two...