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Kiajon
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For the first time since 2006 my little Spitfire 1500 is road legal! She passed her 2nd attempt at the MOT with no advisories! A huge thank you to everyone who has offered me advice and guidance. I’ll be asking lots more questions as I know classic car ownership is a bit like painting the Forth bridge, you never really finish it! But for now I’m going to drive her and get a better idea of what I need improve/change/repair/replace! 
One quick question, is it worth fitting a wider radiator? At the moment it’s all standard at the mo but I know that she runs a bit warm. I’ve seen wider radiators on fleabay either aluminium ones for £110 (way to cheap to be any good, surely) or an ‘uprated radiator’ for £150 - see attached images - is it worth it? 
 

Thanks again

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before you dive into deep pocket fixes  get a thermometer and check the engine and rad temperatures , many replace all the big  myth costs then find the voltage stabiliser the thermostat or the sender unit are giving you warm gauge readings ,  always do the basics first ,  what makes you think its running hot ????  just the gauge or something else ????

Pete

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What Pete said!

The 1500 was designed to run a bit warmer than the earlier cars - mostly for emissions, though efficiency also benefits - and the full-width radiator was down-sized on Mk1 Spitfires because they ran too cool.

Even if your gauge is reading right, do give the cooling system a thorough flush and check. If your block is full of silt or your pump is missing half its blades then no amount of extra radiator will help.

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49 minutes ago, NonMember said:

The 1500 was designed to run a bit warmer than the earlier cars - mostly for emissions, though efficiency also benefits - and the full-width radiator was down-sized on Mk1 Spitfires because they ran too cool.

Same with Heralds; many have retro-fitted the full-width radiator, myself included, only to find that at low 'pottering' speeds it never really gets warm enough to warrant it.

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Thanks for the responses, I’m happy not spend money on the rad, there’s other stuff that’ll happily rinse my wallet (wife, kids!) The gauge is showing a bit warm. I gave the system a flush when I first got it running but having read up more (on here mainly) I realised I didn’t get do it right so that’ll be redone first.  

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Is the high gauge reading produced when driving or in traffic? The reports on here concerning the alloy rads have been generally favourable (my experience also although for different model) with the only grumble being the angle of the top connection which doesnt line up well with the engine one...

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yes 1500 could/should   have a 88c stat specified    as standard,  the gauges and sender do not change from a 82c  spec  so a 1500 will read /show higher readings because it is 

6dg C hotter than all others   so dont jump to the wrong conclusion here .  if its between  Normal and Hot  its probably fine .

Pete

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  • 10 months later...

First of all is my 1970 Vitesse fitted with two horns ? I can only find one on the passenger side which is working when it's wired up directly to the battery. I'm getting zero when using the horn push. The screws attaching the steering wheel are chewed up as you'll see, so, that would prove difficult to remove. Is there a trial and error sequence of tests you can do to find where the fault is on the horn ?

  When this horn is fixed she will be road legal, so as you can imagine the hooter problem is very frustrating.

....Neil Russell

IMG_20210617_170125150.jpg

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the chewed screws only hold the handwheel to the centre hub to remove the stg wheel prise the horn push out its a push in fit

the horns are fed with a 12v live . the horns then run and earth up to the column and its contact slip ring this is connected to the stg wheel with a sprung plastic/brass pencil

which runs on the slip ring (inside the switch cowl)  these fail or can be missing completly  there are two lengths used depends on the stg wheel hub.

the earth continues down the stg column and there is a wire link to pass the UJ down near the rack these wires  can fracture 

the rack is on rubber mounts so it should have a earth from the rack greaser to the engine front plate to complete the tortuos earth route

if you run a temp earth from the horn terminal  it should  give you a toot 

the horns do fail due to water ingress and age 

pete

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That will only remove the wheel from the boss (the metal part that attaches to the steering column)

Just lift the central hornpush out (screwdriver may be required) and inside should be a big nut securing the wheel to the coulumn. I foregt what size socket is required, but you many not need to remove it.

There should be a "pencil" in there, to attach the hornpush to the brass ring (under the boss, which should have a hole drilled through for the pencil). The pencil is actually more like a bit of Bic biro, clear plastic, brass contact at each end connected by a spring.  A few quid to buy if needed.

However, from memory it is a purple wire that is teh horn wire. So if you rummage under the se=teering column, you should find it. Pull the connector apart, and try earthing the horn wire. If that doesn't work, check elsewhere.

There should be 2 horns, but don't worry if only one is there. You can check the horn itself works by connecting it to battery live and earth. It should be loud and clear. Many simply don't work. 

That would be my starting points.

 

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Just now, VixenPPP said:

Looking at the push button contact there is a lump of solder on it. These things are expensive. I'm wondering wether to replace it.

...NeilIMG_20210621_143516173.thumb.jpg.c1b2f739767f55567661380a61c421cc.jpg

Was there a pencil in there? A pic inside the boss will help us

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The pencil needs to contact that brass (with a bit of solder) contact when it is through the hole. Sometimes people solder a wire from the hornpush to the pencil if it doesn't line up nicely, seen that a few times. 

You should get teh horn to work by using a screwdriver to short the brass ring (hidden behind the boss) to te boss. If nothing happens, I would check the horn itself works. 

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doesnt look like there was a pencil contact tube fitted. Its a non standard steering wheel but I wonder if that slight recess in the boss inner slot is where it might go?  Its part number 142534 (thats the usual length of 2.6" and you might need the longer version at 3.4") however as Clive says check through the system first to see what else is wrong...

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says by the side of a pic that he has the pencil  , a look at its condition would help us 

there is no need to centre pop the nut  there are two AF sizes  used  15/16" and 1 1/8" AF from memory.

if you need to remove the stg wheel leave the nut on loose  and when seated grab the wheel and give it a  good waggle it will pop up the splines 

Pete

 

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Hi all...I have a new pencil brush and slip ring from Paddocks. Using an old bearing puller I've managed to take the steering wheel off and prise out the old slip ring. It looks like it needs to be dismantled further in order to connect the purple wire on the new slip ring. I'm not sure how to go about this. It has only one horn, I can see where the second one would have been. Finally, i've read the horn has its own relay switch. I can't see one. 

.... Neil

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi all, I'm a little further with the horn fault. As advised, I connected a jumper lead onto the shaft itself inside the engine bay to the negative terminal on the battery the horn works on pushing the horn button, also by taking a wire from the the clamp next to the clutch pedal then through the bulkhead and onto earth on the steering rack, again the horn works. I can't detect any bridging wire on the uj. The manual says this is soldered on. It seems quite inaccessible. Is there an easier way of bridging the uj ?

......Neil

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