December 1999

Thursday 30th December 1999
Completed the engine mounting, by drilling the holes in it. Re-assembled front suspension on the car, so I can drop it back on to its wheels. Removed the windscreen, unfortunately breaking it in the process. Bit too heavy with the right foot! I'll fit a polycarbonate screen later. Removed windscreen wiper mech, pedal box, clutch and throttle cable, battery isolator switch, servo bracket, in preperation for the respray. I've some slight rust to attend to around the windscreen. Nothing too scary, fortunately. Vacuumed the inside of the car. Very dusty.
Wednesday 29th December 1999
Finished the engine mounting. Welded it all up (wire-feed on 5 and voltage on 5 on the Miget) and now I need to drill five holes for the mounting bolts.
New (4mm) and old (2mm silver) front engine mountings

Tuesday 28th December 1999
Wretched cold struck me down again last night. Not had a chance to weld the new bracket yet.
Monday 27th December 1999
Cut out the four pieces of 4mm steel that make up the front engine mounting. Found out that Quaife recommend and use Silkolene oil in their gearboxes so I'll see if I can track some down locally.
Saturday 25th December 1999
Merry Christmas and a happy new year. And my very best wishes to everyone who's visited the site over the last twelve months. Thanks for your continued support, the great E-mails and those guestbook messages. Sig

Thursday 23rd December 1999
The gearbox was delivered today. It comes without any oil in it, I suppose its up to you to choose which oil you want use. Any suggestions? You even get all the old bits back. Anyone want the internals from an RS1800 16V Fiesta gearbox? Offers. The hole punches have also arrived, so I've now got plenty to do over the hols.
Wednesday 22nd December 1999
Phoned Andy @Quaife. The gearbox will be delivered to me at work, tomorrow.
Tuesday 21st December 1999
Ordered a set of hole cutters from Frost. Their catalogue came with Practical Classics magazine, and is packed full of interesting gadgets and gizmos for people working on cars. Steel plate arrived from Smith Steel in town. Its a 500x500mm sheet of 4mm mild steel. Cost £20. Is going to take some cutting, I'll check what the guillotine at work is capable of cutting.
Just checked my Email, and I've a message from Quaife Engineering. The gearbox is ready.
Sunday 19th December 1999
Suffering from that flu virus thats going round at the moment. Could have been worse, could have been next weekend. No news from Quaife yet. The box will probably be ready for collection next week. They were very busy when I dropped it off.

Jobs to complete over the Christmas hols are:

Re-make the front engine mounting, from 4mm mild steel. I've used 2mm steel, and it looks just a bit too thin and flimsy. Besides, the engine has been tilted back since I made the original bracket, so I could do with re-engineering it.

Brace the front bulkhead, where the brake servo and engine steady bar are mounted. I may use the remaining pieces of 38mm roll cage tubing to run a brace from the cage to the bulkhead. That'll stop it from moving.

Make a strut-brace for the front struts. I'm tempted to run the cage forwards, through the bulkhead, to the strut tops. A lot of work though. I may run a piece of steel from each strut top, to the front bulkhead, about where the bonnet release bracket goes. I've some pictures of BMW M3 touring cars from the 80's, and they did exactly that, using box section steel. Needs to be removable though, to allow the removal of the cam cover/cylinder head.

Remove the modified water pump, and replace it with the 1800 pump. I'm not running the Aldon water pump drive kit so I need to refit the standard water pump and drive pulley.

Reduce weight, no that doesn't mean skimping on the Turkey and mince pies, I've bought some hole cutters, and I need to reduce weight by drilling everything in sight. One swiss cheese coming up.

Remove the windscreen and sunroof, for the respray. Theres a little of the dreaded rust around the top edge of the windscreen, which I need to attack.

Complete the front and rear rally arches, with the filler and knifing compound. Decide on how to mount the front wings, so they're easily removable.

Saturday 18th December 1999
Got favicon.ico working in IE5. Bookmark the page and a Super Mario icon should appear alongside the bookmark in the favourites list. I need to design my own icon now. I used the icon editor that comes with Visual Basic. It must be 16x16 pixels, otherwise it doesnt work. Check out for more details.
Tuesday P.M. 14th December 1999
Delivered the gearbox to Quaife. Andy says that he's going to use a 4.69:1 final drive, with .96 overdrive (fifth gear). That should be good for at least 120MPH in top. The workshops were spotless. Bright shiny bits of turned metal all over the place. There was one of the new sequential front wheel drive boxes on the floor in reception. The bellhousing looks like it would fit on the Zetec. Trouble is that they're about £7000. My gearbox will be completely rebuilt, with close ratio gears and a limited slip differential to boot. No sign of the RS200. The place looked very busy, so I didn't bother asking for a look round. Quite an uneventful journey down to Sevenoaks. 160 miles each way. Went via the Dartford crossing, so the toll was a quid each way! That bridge is massive. The view from the top on a clear day is quite impressive. Took some pictures on the way down, and coming back on the A14 there was a Mitsubish Shogun on fire. An impressive amount of smoke.
The Queen Elizabeth bridge A view from the car, whilst crossing over Dartford. Anyone got a light?

Tuesday A.M. 14th December 1999
Driving down to Quaife today. The gearbox is going to take a few days to rework, but should be complete by Friday. Whilst I'm down there, I'll hopefully get a chance to look over Mike's 450BHP RS200, as featured in CCC magazine a few months ago. More letters in this months CCC, asking about Zetec conversions. These people should search the web for Zetec information. Its amazing what you can find. I've sent my details in to the magazine, to offer help, but I've heard nothing as yet. Monday 13th December 1999
Split the gearbox from the engine.
Tuesday 7th December 1999
Removed suspension, engine and box. Quaife are in Sevenoaks in Kent, which means taking a day off work next week to drive down there to deliver the gearbox for the rebuild. Cheaper and quicker than trying to post it to them.
Saturday 4th December 1999
New fireplace fitted yesterday, so I've spent a few more hours editing the web pages. Finally resolved difference in appearance between NS 4.6 and IE 5. NS doesn't support "line-height", as its supposed to, so I've removed all references from the style sheet. At last it looks exactly the same in both browsers. Experimented with Macromedia Fireworks 2.0 for the gfx. What a great tool. Gearbox comes out this weekend (together with the engine, drive shafts, and front suspension.) About an hours work. Next week I'm going to drop the gearbox off with Quaife for a rebuild, limited slip diff (makes sure that drive always goes to both wheels), change of final drive etc. I'm going for 16" wheels, with 7.5" at the front and rear, and they'll work out the final drive ratio from the tyre diameter (600mm), maximum revs (8000rpm) and top speed required (130 MPH Scary!). Web site will be down for a short while on Monday 6th December, whilst the server is moved to a new datacenter, sorry for any inconvenience. Apparently if you place a 16x16 or 32x32 icon in the root of your site, called favicon.ico, when someone bookmarks the page in IE5, the icon is stored with the bookmark. I haven't quite got it working right yet, time to do some more research.