June 1999

Spent about 20 mins on the car, mounting the stabiliser bracket to the bulkhead. Tonight I'll clean the paint off and weld the bracket in place.
Well I hope you like the revamp to the web site. Notepad is definitely the best way to make web pages, but you do need to know your HTML. The site now features 3 frames, and a new zetecinside logo. I'll add some more animated GIFs soon, but I want to keep download times to a minimum, so you dont get bored waiting for stuff to appear.
Have a look round, and if you think I need to amend the pages in any way, just let me know.
Whats that? Oh, the car? She's fine. I'll finish off the engine stabiliser tomorrow evening, and then its the new fibreglass wheel arches, front wings, a tad more welding, some cleaning and sanding down, and she's ready for the respray.
Bought the alternator. Negotiated it down to £75 incl. VAT. Burtons do sell an engine stabiliser bar. Its £117 !! I've actually made my own, from a length of steel tube, an old stabiliser bar from a Mini, and an adjustable rod end. Looks really professional too. Welded it all together in a few minutes, and I just need to make two brackets, to mount it to the bulkhead, and the engine, and its cost me nothing more than a few hours work. What happened to the F1 qualifying in France? A Ford in pole position? Well done Rubens.
Found an alternator. I was told last week that the Daihatsu Charade 40 Amp alternator is what I need. I've just been down to my Lucas dealer (yes, I have heard all the jokes about Lucas and why the Brits like warm beer (I dont!)) and they've got one in stock. Cost is approx £80+VAT. Its tiny, and looks to be the same shape as the Brise Fabrications alternators.
Started making the engine stabiliser bar. It'll run from the back of the engine block to the front bulkhead. I dont have enough bits at home to complete the bar, and ringing around places like TAS and Burtons you just get an apathetic response. It wouldn't take ten minutes for TAS to knock me one up, but they really just cant be bothered. I'll raid the parts bin at my dads house tonight. He's bound to have some bushes and other bits lying around.
Phoned Brise Fabrications (01322) 277622 about their advert in last weeks Motoring News. They do a 93mm diameter 14V/50A alternator, for competition use. Its 138mm long, from the pulley face, and the input shaft if 15mm diameter. Price is £140 for the two wire version (allows warning lamp connection) or £186 for the single wire version.
Dukeries rally results are on-line here
Went rallying yesterday, providing help for some friends that were visiting from Oxford. I quite enjoyed helping out, and its nice for me to be able see the other side of an event ie acting as in a support capacity. I've marshalled before, many times, but never helped by directly supporting a crew. Nigel (driver) works as a softy for Williams F1, and Steve (navigator) works for an electronics company. They both thoroughly enjoyed themselves, and Sir Gye (the Peugeot 205) seemed to survive in one piece, dispite several 'anxious' moments through the forests of North Nottinghamshire. Well done lads.
I saw Martin Payton in the Peugeot 106. He said he was enjoying the event, but looked like he was having drive shaft problems.
I've now got support from Jenvey Dynamics, they design and manufacture fuel injection throttle bodies, and may be able to kit me out with a system for Beccy. Saw a Zetec powered Talbot Sunbeam yesterday. Sounded great. Cant wait to hear what mine runs like, specially with the new exhaust. BARP!
I've Emailed Jenvey to see if they can supply me with typical power consumption figures for a fuel injection setup. ie four injectors, high pressure fuel pump, ECU and ignition amplifier. On top of that I've got the dashboard guages consuming little current, and nothing else draining the battery. Maybe if I start the engine from an external battery, I can keep the on-board battery running the peripherals, without it going flat.
Alternators. What can you say? I need to fit one, but dont have enough room at the front of the block. I've had a bit of a brain wave. How about mounting it on the back of the engine, and driving it from a toothed belt, off the tripod housing from the gearbox? Huh? Ok, I'll explain. The Mk3 Fiesta comes with ABS. The ABS modulator is driven from a toothed belt, from the tripod housing. (The pot that sticks out of the diff, that the drive shaft slides in to. It turns the drive shafts round, so therefore rotates! Picture here)
So if I find and fit a tripod housing from an ABS'd Mk3 Fiesta, and then fix the alternator to the block, and drive it via a toothed belt, off the ABS tripod housing, then whilst the car is travelling, the alternator will be turning, which will charge the battery. P ossible problems are calculcating the size of the pulley on the alternator, so its not overdriven at 110 MPH, and of course fabricating a bracket to mount the alternator to. Also, if I lock a front wheel under braking, the shaft will stop spinning, and if theres any inertia in the alternator, it may damage the belt drive. Its perfectly feasible, but will need a little work to get it right. Anyone else got any views? I phoned Scholar engines (Zetec specialists) and they use the standard alternator and drive, which I cant use because of the lack of space around the pulleys.
Fuel consumption on the Mondeo seems to have returned to normal, so its not running lean. Goes well, but goes backwards compared to that TR7 V8 yesterday.
Went in a Triumph TR7, for a bit of nostalgia. The smell of petrol, the rattle of badly fitting trim, the 'Oh my god, are we really travelling that fast in a car built in 1982?'. Yep, it had the V8 3.5 litre conversion. 110 MPH along the ring road. I though that was fast until he said "Oh no, the speedo stops registering at 110. I put it in to fifth at 110." Severe adrenaline rush to the head...
Drove a Ford Focus 1.8 16V too. What a fantastic chassis. Well done to the lads at Ford. Very very impressed. You could actually drift it round roundabouts. Oversteer in a FWD car. Respect. I want one. Maybe in a few years when their second hand price has dropped.
Collected Beccy from Walsall. Uneventful journey back home, apart from the roundabout I clobbered with the off side wheels of the trailer. Takes some getting used to, this towing lark. EXTREMELY impressed with the quality of workmanship that Martin Payton of Ashley Exhausts has done. Amazing piece of work. See the pictures in the gallery. Been ringing around, trying to get hold of a really small alternator for the Zetec engine. Mass engines can supply one of the same variety used on the V8 Eurocars. Problem is that its £119.50, and even then I've not got any way of either fixing it or driving it. Hmmm.
Martin reckons I ought to fit power steering. He says there'll be loads of torque steer from the unequal drive shaft lengths I've got. Anyone got any comments? Could I use the power steering rack of the latest Fiesta Si ?
Put the new Zetec Inside sticker on the boot lid. Looks really neat. I may produce them for mail-order. Depends on the feedback I get. I'm going to put 36" tall stickers on both sides of the car when its resprayed. That should look the business.
The Mondeo's going astonishingly well, considering I fitted the KKM air filter kit on Sunday. She still pinks (always has done) and feels as though she leans out at above 5500 rpm, so its time for a superchip and fuel pressure regulator. Seems to have made a massive improvement to the fuel consumption, which backs up my theory that its running leaner now. Induction roar sounds really good, especially around 3->5000 RPM. Project Mondeo 1800 16V here I come..
The exhaust is finished, and the car is ready for collection on Monday morning. Martin has fitted a VW Golf (Rabbit) back box to keep the noise down!
Air filter induction kit and alloy oil filler cap arrived from KKM in the States. Its for the Mondeo (Contour) and I'll try fitting it at the weekend. The airfilter is enormous, and should give loads of extra power, which is what I need when towing the Fiesta. I'll take pictures, and a new page will be up next week showing the details of the conversion. Check out their web site though. They sell to Europe, and are very competitively priced, against UK/European suppliers. News from the exhaust people is that a 4 into 1 manifold is not possible, due to space restrictions. Instead, a 4-2-1 manifold has been built, which could be better for mid range torque.
www.zetecinside.com is now live....
Took Beccy to Ashley Performance Exhausts at Birmingham. Atrocious weather. I've a tarpaulin big enough to completely cover the car, so I managed to keep all the rain out. The journey took about 1h20mins, at a steady 55 mph. Explained to the techies that I want the single upswept DTM style tail pipe, which is going to be made from 3" steel. The system will comprise of a 4-1 manifold, and 2.25" tubing, with two silencers. She should be ready on Thursday, but I've booked the trailer for next Monday, as I'm in no hurry, so I'll pick her up then. (Hopefully, it wont be raining again!)
Fitted both the doors to the Fiesta, and sprayed the sill on the drivers side. Removed all the remnants of the wiring loom, and gave the inside a good clean. In the afternoon we went go-karting, to put in some practice for a 10 hour endurance race at Stretton, on the 18th of July.

These karts were electric. I was dead surprised with the acceleration, and the top speed wasn't bad either. The karts at Stretton are twin petrol engined (two-stroke), and its well over two years since I won my last karting event, so I was in desperate need of some practice. Stretton (near Stoughton Aerodrome, Leicester) is an outdoor circuit, and I'm secretly hoping for some rain on the day, as I'm very fast in the wet. And we need to win the event, to help raise more money for the British Heart Foundation.