Mick Percy's Build Thread

Mick Percy's Build Thread

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Michael Percy

Michael Percy

My 65 Ghia. The longest restoration in the world... Probably.

Posted by on in Exterior
With the headliner and rear parcel shelf now installed the next things to get installed are the trims that fit around the side windows. The whole area has an extruded aluminium trim that sits in a rubber channel, this fits from the base of the A Pillar, along the roof, down the rear of the C pillar and back along the bottom of the aperture to the door opening. The trim section helps to hold the roof lining in position and finishes the roof lining off. I had previously sent the aluminium trims out to be polished.  Normally these trim sections are plated with a bright finish similar to anodizing (but not the same), however I decided to polish them which gives a shinier finish. The trims were then waxed to prevent oxidation. There are a few articles in the library about trim refinishing and from memory at least one Registry...

Posted by on in General
As with assembling most things, whether an Ikea flat pack, or a classic car, the order in which things are put together is pretty important. This is especially true of the Type 34 interior. The interior trim is installed in such a way that each part must be fitted in the correct order. The headlining is the first part in this jigsaw puzzle, it fits underneath the front and rear screen rubbers and also the side trim around the door aperture and so needs to be installed first. Next is the rear parcel shelf. This also fits underneath the rear screen rubber, much the same way that the headlining does. My rear parcel shelf was too badly warped to be reused, but I had carefully stored it for use as a pattern. Unfortunately I could not find it, and so had to make one from scratch. My guess is that somewhere...

Posted by on in General
It's been a few weeks since I posted a progress update,  not because I've not done anything, but simply as I've been too busy to be able to to spare the time to blog about it. If you've been checking my photo stream you would have noticed that I did manage to upload some pictures of what I've been up to and you would have noticed that the build is ticking along nicely. The main work that has been carried out since my last update is the installation of the headlining. I had originally booked this into the same trim shop that trimmed my seats, but after several postponements, I got fed up with waiting for them and decided to do it myself. I had already purchased the headlining material when I ordered my carpet set from Spirit of the 50's this must have been some 10 years ago and unfortunately...

Posted by on in Engine
If like me you have wondered how or where you can mount the trigger wheel for your EFI Type 3 engine, well ponder no longer, the answer is here :D I stumbled across this thread over at the Samba, where supersuk outlined an idea to make a trigger wheel that mounted directly to the front of the fan. A stroke of genius really, and simple too. In a previous blog post I had already considered somehow using the fan as the trigger wheel (it kinda looks like a trigger wheel) but never got past the fact that the VR sensor would not work on the cast aluminium. The solution is to make a trigger wheel that has no centre and can be bolted to the front of the fan. Just ensure that it follows the form of the fan, thus not impeding the airflow. A head smacking moment really - one...

Posted by on in Brakes
Rawhide references aside, this weekend broaches yet another milestone in the build. For the past 5 or so years the car has sat on axle stands whilst I tinkered about with different suspension setups, but now, after deciding to postpone my plans for the crazy suspension and fitting a stock (ish) IRS setup, it finally stands on it's own four wheels again. After experiencing a few hiccups over the past few weeks, I must admit to being a little disheartened with the build. The first issue I came across was having to finally admit defeat with the wheels I had chosen and source a set with a greater offset, this was the topic of conversation for my last blog. Well, since then, I have had more bad news. Last week I dropped off the flywheel, crank, fan etc to the engine balancers to get balanced, only to be told a few...

Posted by on in Brakes
The weekend I turned my attention to getting the rear brakes sorted out. The new backing plates and hub centres finally arrived from the states and so I could fit them up and check out clearances and offsets. After trial fitting the hubs and taking some measurements I finally conceded that the current wheels are not going to work without some major modifications to both the front and rear ends, which is something that I am currently trying to avoid given that I am trying to meet a September deadline. The offset of my current wheels (ET30) puts the rim too far outwards and the result is that the tyres do not sit inside the arches, not a look that I personally like. Originally Type 3's are fitted with an ET46 wheel, but most wheels popular in the VW scene are in the ET25-35 range. Whilst this can be made to...

Posted by on in Brakes
This weekend I turned my attention to getting the rest of the brakes installed. The pedal assembly needed to be fitted and the SACO hydraulic clutch kit installed. The SACO kit replaces the clutch cable with a hydraulic setup which includes a small master cylinder that locates inside of the 'transmission' tunnel, and a slave cylinder that mounts where the stock clutch cable normally mounts. The first thing to do was to locate all of the separate parts of the pedal assembly so that I could trial fit everything together on the bench. I had previously completely removed and disassembled  the pedal assembly as I had the pedal arms chromed. After rounding up all of the parts I set about refitting the pedal assembly together. The were some components that were still a bit dirty as they had not been cleaned up, so I degreased them and repainted them where necessary....

Posted by on in Uncategorized
I finally finished off the engine mounts today. I decided to bolt them in rather than weld them in, mostly as I feel that it will be a lot stronger. To do this I fabricated a plate to fit on the inside of the engine bay tin. This helps spread the load out and reinforce the panel. It will also prevent the bolts from pulling through the metal. The plate needed to be bent to miss the recess pressed in the panel where the bracket sits, which was easy enough to do on the bender. I then spotted through some holes to allow them to be bolted together. With the backing plates fabbed up it was time for a trial fit. I removed the engine bar and cleaned up the gunk and gunge from it (the donor engine had leaky oil cooler seals) I then bent the bar slightly rearwards on...

Posted by on in Brakes
I've been pretty busy the past few weeks, so much so that I haven't even had a chance to blog about what I've managed to get done. I've really been getting a push on to get the car ready for the 50th anniversary celebrations that we are having in September, and so have been flat out at every opportunity. If you've been reading the blog regularly, then you would recall that last time I had trial fitted the engine into the car to figure out a few things. One of the things that I needed to get sorted was the fabrication of some new IRS engine mounts. Originally the car was swing-axle, but I have changed the rear sub-frame over to a later IRS type. With no frame-horns (IRS sub-frames do not have frame-horns) the only option to mount the engine is via the same method used with the later IRS...

Posted by on in Engine
With the 50th anniversary event slowly creeping up, I've got a renewed enthusiasm for the Ghia and I'm managing to get quite a bit done. This weekend I set myself the task of getting the engine in the car as a trial fit so that I could look to fabricate some engine mounting brackets up. To make the job easier I decided to strip all unnecessary weight off of the engine both to make fitting it easier, and also to improve access around the engine bay. Removing the tin will also allow me to clean, prep and paint it in readiness for the new engine build. It's been a while since I stripped a Type 3 engine, and have never worked on a fuel injected unit. There are some subtle differences between the normally aspirated unit and the fuel injected engines, the tinware is slightly different, there's some kind of smog...

Posted by on in Suspension
I've made some good progress on the Ghia the past couple of weeks. After assembling the IRS last weekend, I stripped and painted the front beam. The front beam was already partially stripped having been removed from the car some time ago. I had previously prepped and painted the steering box and had already removed the hub assemblies too. I spent some time removing the old road grime and grease from the beam, and stripping off the old paint. The beam ideally needed to be completely stripped down and media blasted, but as I'm on a schedule to get the car finished before September  I opted to skip this and prep the beam manually instead. So I stripped the beam and give it a couple of coats of etch primer and enamel topcoat. Next I fitted new top and bottom ball joints, and refitted the bump stops. A great tip here...

Posted by on in General
Managed to spend some time on reassembling the rear suspension this past weekend. The paint I applied last weekend has not come out too bad, but the issue I had with the thinners reacting has left a bit of a mottled finish. But, as I'm now on a mission to get the car back on the road by September it's just something that I will have to live with. Mind you, it's really not too bad, and it is one of those things that will not really get scrutinized. (in reality it will not even get seen), or maybe I'm just trying to convince myself so. :) I had a bit of fun removing the bushes from the other suspension, and ended up having to get creative with the vice and some different size sockets to push the centre of the bushes out on the Porsche arms so that I could...

Posted by on in General
I spent this weekend finishing off painting the IRS for the Ghia. I stripped the paint from it last weekend using a combination of paint stripper and a zip wheel in my grinder. There was only some minor surface rust, so I sanded this back ready for paintin

Posted by on in General
http://www.vdubber.com/m/photos/get_image/file/781eb25eef6333380817de36fd5fa9c7.jpg
Spent a bit of time yesterday stripping down the Type 3 IRS that I will be fitting into the Type 34. This came out of the fastback doner car I bought a few months back. The suspension is in pretty good shape with no rust, dings, modifications or bits missing. I removed the A-arms and spring plates in readiness to strip and paint the beam. I will probably paint this myself in an enamel based paint rather than getting it powder coated as powder coating generally comes out a little too shiny for my taste, plus they rarely mask everything up properly, so you end up spending just as much time removing paint from areas like bearing mating surfaces and thread inserts. The bushes are well worn and will get replaced with new items. I will probably source some urethane bushes, although these are not as readily available as the...

Posted by on in General
http://www.vdubber.com/m/photos/get_image/file/f49b5dd698ed3418b58af0741ff44390.jpg
Managed to get the bench finished off this week. I topped it off with some 28mm MDF, which makes a nice sturdy worksurface. I plan on covering one part with stainless steel to make a clean area for engine / gearbox assembly, but this will have to wait until I find some. The underneath is one long shelf, again made from MDF, this has given me plenty of storage space. As you can see the bench is quite wide, and has given me somewhere to store all of my power tools safely out of the way, where they are easy to get to should I need them. I also finished off setting up my new TIG welder. I had to make an adaptor for the argon bottle, as the new welder uses a larger hose size than my MIG. Also had to go get some filler rods and tungsten electrodes, as...

Posted by on in General
Spent a few hours this afternoon working on getting the workbench finished in the garage. The basic frame is now properly bolted together, and the rest of the timber cut to finish it off. The bench is about four and a half metres long, and will have a single shelf underneath, this will give me somewhere to store my power tools. All that's left to do is to fit the remaining timber spans to the bottom, level the legs and then fit the work surface. I plan on adding a stainless section to the worktop so that I can use it as a clean area for engine assembly. I also want to fit both a wood and metal vise as well. After the bench is finished, the next project is to make up a base for the 3-in-1 machine and also a welding table. The welding table is basically a...

Posted by on in General
If I was still in England, right about now it would be spring time, the time of the year where traditionally you would clean your house after the winter. But I don't live there any more, and I still can't get my head around the seasons over here in Oz. So instead of spring, it's currently autumn, and I have finally got around to doing a little more 'spring cleaning' up out in the garage. A short time back I aquired a Hercus 9" lathe and a small milling machine from my father in law. They have been sitting in my garage for the past month or so waiting to be moved into a more useful position. Here's the lathe and mill, they need a clean up and I will probably fit an inverter to them so that I can get better speed control, but they are functional. I also aquired...

Posted by on in General
I got a call from the guy I bought the Fasty off of last week, turns out that another customer had crashed her Type 3 and was on the look out for a doner car. So this weekend I removed the engine and gearbox from the fasty in readiness for it to be picked up. It's been some time since I pulled the engine from a Type 3, and apart from it being the hottest day of the year, I managed to get the engine and box out of the car in a couple of hours. This included getting in running so that I could reverse it up on the ramps as well. Fortunately there were no seized or rounded bolts, and the whole process was fairly painless. Now all I need to do is rebuild it.  ...

Posted by on in General
http://www.vdubber.com/m/photos/get_image/file/c92810d7d7c43554a4a39148e9504061.jpg
Regular readers of my blog will know that the Type 4 engine, and Porsche 911 gearbox that I have built for the Razoredge has been borrowed for use in my salt flat race car. Whilst pondering on how much grief it would be to get it installed in both the Oval and the Ghia, and be able to swap them over without too much of an issue, I came to the conclusion that it was simply too much hassle. Whilst I had always dreamed of the big Type 4 powered Type 34. Now, after some 15 years of building it, and having moved to a different country, I've decided that I simply would like to get it on the road. There's no point in having a fast road car here in South Australia. There are no drag strips, very few race tracks, and with cops that hide in bushes with...

Posted by on in General
http://www.t-34.co.uk/media/p9087613.jpg
Well, it's been a little time since I actually did some work on the Ghia, recovering the interior doesn't really count as it wasn't me doing the work. So spurned by an invitation to the Victoria day of the Volkswagen in November (Cheers Grey54) I've decided that I will try and get to the event - especially as I was also invited last year, and truth be told the Ghia is pretty much int he same state as it was back then. So motivated to go and do something, I decided that I really need to get the rear suspension finished, the  engine mounted, and the car rolling. Then I can get the exhaust system made, the headlining fitted and look at getting the thing running. First things first - having spent many many hours designing the rear suspension (mostly in my head) I made the decision, that i would...