July 1, 2008

November Entries

Sunday, November 5th, 2006
Total Build Time: 247 hours

After spending a week away from home attending the SEMA show in Las Vegas it was nice to be back to the simple life. No slot machines, no exotic cars I can't afford, and miles of walking that made me want to cut my feet off they hurt so bad. No, instead I spent a relaxing Saturday inside doing absolutely nothing but catching up with the family, watching a little television (isn't Dirty Jobs on Discovery Channel a killer TV show?), and even sneaking in an afternoon nap on the couch Dagwood style. Life is good again.

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Come Sunday though the itch was too strong to hide, I wanted, no, NEEDED, to go out in the garage and work on the Roadster. Just like any car building project more than half the fun is the build up/repairs/restoration of the project. Getting in there and making a pile of parts into something whole, or making something once old new again. Luckily our Florida climate allows continued work through the "winter" months we have here so there will be no stoppage of work.

Still continuing on the wiring section of the project, I removed the Mass-Flo (www.mass-floefi.com) wiring harness from the engine and prepared it for final installation by adding the included high-temp convolute and harness wrap tape to the bare harness. I also routed the battery cables more cleanly (previously installed just to start the engine) with insulated clamps, shrink wrap on the ends, and some of the Mr. Gasket G-Sleeve (www.mrgasket.com) hose covering on the engine compartment ends of the cables for a clean look. The body wiring for the rear lights, fuel pump, and fuel gauge has also been neatened up with some sacrificial tie-wraps for now. Once I have the wiring connected and fully tested the tie-wraps will be removed and the harness completely wrapped for weather and abrasion protection and secured to the Roadster's frame.

Sunday, November 12th, 2006
Total Build Time: 251 hours

I'm deep into the wiring phase right now. I've got our engine's EFI harness back on the engine and routed and now I'm working on the rear body wiring since it is the smallest body harness to deal with. I don't even want to think about the front right now with horns, lights, fans, relays, etc. needing to be wired. The rear wiring is simple with just lights, fuel level sender, and fuel pump power to be routed. I finished the rough in of the rear wiring last weekend and this weekend I am starting to cover it with the supplied convolute, cutting the sacrificial tie wraps as I go, and then wrapping the completed harness in tape. All that will be left will be to install wiring connectors at the end of the harness for the taillights and for the fuel tank wiring.

Sunday, November 19th, 2006
Total Build Time: 256 hours

There's a cold front moving through our area, so I'll be donning a sweatshirt for the next week or so, but at least I can still work on the project, unlike some of my fellow builders to the north that have to either heat their garage or just wait for the spring before they can continue their Roadster build.

I picked up a Mr. Gasket (www.mrgasket.com) Flexible Wire Covering Kit (PN 4457) to aid in the wiring of the Roadster. The Roadster comes with harness covering, but you can never have too much, plus the Mr. Gasket kit (which is 1/2-inch split loom) also comes with Ts and in-line outlets, which help route wiring cleanly. Best of all, the kit comes with harness mounting clips that allow the harness to be secured to the frame. I much prefer these to a standard Adel type clamp because you can easily open these to remove the harness for repairs or updates.

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Monday November 20th to Sunday, November 26th, 2006
Total Build Time: 288 hours

Since Primedia is closed for Thanksgiving and the Friday afterwards, I thought I would take Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday off as well so I could get a full week in of working on the Roadster project. Right now the wiring phase is taking a little longer than I'd like and with the shorter days it's already dark when I get home in the evenings. I needed some solid work hours to get caught up and this was one of the best ways I could think of, besides, I'd barely taken any time off this year and I needed a break from the day to day, even if it was still working on a car.

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During this week long festival of wiring I tackled about half of the car's wiring, including all of the rear body wiring where I used Weatherpak connectors from MSD (www.msdignition.com) for the taillight connections. Making the brake lights female and the turn signals male will prevent incorrect assembly later when the painted body goes on. I also mounted the windshield wiper motor to the firewall. The wiper drive cable and wheel boxes will not be installed until the body goes on, but with the wiper motor secured I can finish the wiring to it.

For a headlight switch we used the provided switch from Factory Five and mounted it to a small plate riveted to the chassis. This allows a quick reach under the dash to the left of the steering wheel to turn on the headlights. Notice the '65-'66 Mustang headlight identification ring from Virginia Classic Mustang (www.virginiaclassicmustang.com). The toggle switch next to the headlight switch will be wired for hazard flashers.

Later in the week after Thanksgiving the dash was completed. We've had the dash sitting in bare aluminum with the gauges mocked up for several months. With all this time on our hands this week it was the perfect time to finish the dash off by adding the padding, mounting the gauges, and wiring the complete dash with high amperage Deutsch disconnects, also from MSD. The only thing the dash is missing right now is the wiper switch and horn button, both of which have been ordered as of this writing.

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