So this was the state of
play at the end of Friday 3 June. The front bumper was finally
attached - it took much longer than I expected as the process was
more akin to a three-dimensional jigsaw - and the number plate is on.
Here's what took the time. In order to fit the bumper, the main brackets need to be in line with
chassis rails (one wasn't because I suspect the bumper had been a bit
distorted by a shunt at some point) so they can be bolted on, and the
ends of the bumper need to
be attached through holes in the valance. They weren't lined up either.
Several spanners, ratchets and a long crowbar persuaded everything it
really did want to fit.
On the bright side (literally), dismantling the bumpers gave me the
opportunity to give all areas a seriously deep polish so everything is
shiny now - except where my grubby fingers have had to finangle bits
back into position.
The driver's door card furniture is now all completed, with a soft new
door capping, and a new door card. Two more afternoons' work saw
more carpets laid - wheel arches and steps, plus passenger side tunnel,
although the driver's side was troublesome - the carpet seemed too
big for the space, although with a bit of re-positioning, it was finally sorted.
The main tunnel carpet took a lot of fiddling, trial fitting, and cutting to get the
aperture for the gearstick to the right size and location, but now it's
glued down it fits like a glove. A small mod to the sill carpets was
needed as, in our enthusiasm, Russ and I had laid carpet over the holes
where the end of the seat belts are bolted on. D'oh! That was quickly
fixed by a bit of cutting away of excess carpetry.
A rare treat: the trim panels behind the doors and kick panels on the outer side of
the footwells were quick and easy to fit. In fact, they were so precise a fit
that I didn't need to attach them in any way, just push them firmly
into position and they stayed there.
Replacing the seats involved installing the wooden runners and
wriggling each seat (with its newly greased sliders) into position,
while ensuring that the runners stayed put and then getting them all to
line up with the bolt holes so everything could be bolted down. With
just one pair of hands.
Once done, of course, ODE 29F started to look pretty much finished.
So, the interior was
now fitted out with brand new carpets, new trim panels, new door cards,
locks, the seats have been refitted. Only the dashboard to do!
So the car headed off on a
1,200-mile shake-down drive to the south of France and back. Where else?
A brief stop in Normandy on the way to the Tarn area.
almost marks the end of the restoration blog as the rest of the work
that'll be done (including repainting the dash - I can't have that
looking scrappy now the rest of the car looks sparkly and new) doesn't
really qualify as restoration. On second thoughts, maybe it does, as it
makes a huge difference to the look of the interior. The rest is more
tinkering and maintenance really - which along with driving is the
PS: Update 10 February 2017
The interior was quickly carpeted and refitted but the dashboard
remains to be repainted. Around the middle of March, it was at last -
read on for gruesome details...