Thursday, August 6, 2015

Restoration Items

I know the blog has been dry lately. I have been busy, just not so much on the Spitfire. I have been making slow progress on the seat and I continue to put other random things back together.

The wife and kids are down in southern NJ for the next several weeks for their annual summer "last hurrah". Over the years, not being able to sacrifice vacation time this close to the Maine trip, I've stayed home. This year is no different. What's also no different is the "honey-do" list that I willingly take on as my pound of flesh for making her take care of the kids all by herself.

This year, that pound of flesh entails re-doing my master bathroom. Now, "master" in this usage is a stretching it a bit as the only reason it's a master bath is because it's attached to the "master" bedroom. I'll just say that we don't have a very big house; it tries. That job is the competition for the car. We'll see how it goes.

Hard to adjust the belt tension when you forget to properly mount the dynamo!
I bought a new battery box a while back since the bottom of mine was eaten away from the battery acid over the years and subsequently repaired by the PO with fiberglass matting. I haven't decided if I want to fix that quite yet (welding), but I did remove the windscreen wiper motor as interference because I can make some money cleaning up some surface rust in the general area. The motor will, obviously, require some attention before I put it back in.

Yummy 50-year old grease. It did work, though, that last time I tried it! I think I have a few spares, too.
As for the seat, due to the damage and extensive rust, I decided to soak the whole thing as best I could. It's going to take some skill to repair the seat properly. Since I don't want to have to do it again, I want to get it as cleaned up as possible. The repair will involve welding, probably requiring some good quality and...yea, still no practice there. The vinegar soak to remove the rust has been incredibly effective. This is the largest impact of this method to remove rust that I've observed so far. Then again, it's by far the largest thing that I've soaked but still...impressive.

Seat damage before soaking. The wire rod on the far left is broken...that's unfortunate.

This is post-soak. Looks like one of those infomercials where they dip a penny in something. The broken wire is circled.
There is a wire (more like a non-braided cable...chain-link fence wire?) that goes from the seat bottom frame into a channel that runs around the edge of the seat back and back to the other side of the seat frame. I've got to properly repair this or it's just going to break again.

Another interesting thing that I learned is that the seats are "handed". In other words, the driver's and passenger's seats are not symmetrical. Not too cost-effective for these days, but the days of Triumphs were definitely a different era.

I found this pic online at Totally Triumph Network. You can see the "lop-sided" seat.
The seat that is broken is, as expected, the driver's seat so I guess that's a good incentive if I want to be able to drive the car again. On a side note, I had taken the seats out when I first got the car to inspect the floorboards and put them back in swapped, ignorant that they were different. So, they will go in "backwards". Just sayin'...

Most of my time lately, like I said, has been taken up with re-doing the master bath. The master bath rebuild entails a new tile floor (my second), paint and cabinetry. When I did my first tile floor (that was a whopping 30 square feet), I bought a wet saw to cut the tile. It's a cheap Black and Decker, but it does the job. It's only rated for up to 8" tiles, but I pulled the guard off and it's good enough to get the job done. I would have not done it any other way and would highly recommend this $65 investment (if you buy the essentially same thing at Harbor Freight) or you will drive yourself crazy.

Almost before. The linoleum floor and sink are out. Like that "blue sky?!" paint?
It's coming along okay, but tough to get too far when I'm trying to accomplish stuff after work. If all goes to plan, I should be ready to lay the tile on Saturday...maybe even tomorrow, but I don't want to start and not be able to finish based on curing time of the thin-set.

Painting done, roughing in the tile.
That's enough of that. Re-doing a bathroom is no where near as fun and exciting as working on the Triumph and I don't intend to provide any "how I did it" notes. I will include a "after" picture, though, since I started it.

Once the bathroom is done, I should be able to focus exclusively on the car. "Stuff" happens, of course, but hopefully I'll get some quality time to devote.

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