Saturday, November 26, 2011

Weddings and Spaceframes

The Sunday after Birmingham we put everything away for the winter.  We took all the tools out of the lorry and parked everything up out of the way.   The car was pushed straight onto the ramp for work to begin in readiness for the NEC.    One of the reasons I like doing the NEC is that it means we get stuck in and get the car ready and don’t find ourselves with a week to go before the first meeting and a car that’s only half built!
With the car on the ramp I took the panels off leaving me with just the spaceframe.   I made a mistake really this season in that every time I damaged a panel I would send it back and get it repaired.   This is great in theory and the repairs were really good quality but I just kept on adding so much weight to the car that I ended the season with a car weighing 740 kilos . . . . the minimum weight allowed being 700!   So with tears in my eyes at the thought of the expense a new set was ordered from Mark at Boss and is now ready to collect and get painted.
While the panels are off we have a few little jobs we want to do.    As everything is off and easy to work on it’s a good time to check everything over too.   The spaceframe was filthy with bits of the Rosegreen pits still clinging on to everything, so we loaded it onto one of our recovery trucks and took it into work to give it a good jet-washing off.   We lifted it straight off with the forklift and I spent a good couple of hours with the pressure washer making it look presentable again.
Having it at work also gave me chance to start it and let it run.    As you know it got warm at Birmingham and I have had that nagging doubt in my mind ever since that it might have done some lasting damage, but after running it up to temperature and connecting the fan up it started to cool down as it should.   Good news all round really.
The big ‘wheel building’ session is finally underway too.   Running the car with odd wheels annoys me and we are repairing everything and sorting them all into sets so the car can always have matching wheels.   The spares are getting sorted too and I’m determined to use the break to try and get everything organised!
As I mentioned before, last Saturday was my friends’ Carl and Laura’s wedding.   It was here that I made two terrible mistakes.    The first one was saying I could drink more than Gavin and Shaun - I now have to eat humble pie and admit that I can’t.    My second error was thinking that you bounce when you’re drunk!   Unfortunately you don’t and my black eye, cut face and large blood loss prove this!  Apart from me getting ridiculously drunk it was a really good night, and all the best to both Carl and Laura.   I can’t remember anything after but I have never felt as ill as I did on the Sunday morning!   I’m sure anyone who was there will have great pleasure in filling you in on all the details though.   Shaun’s wife Carrie even offered to do this blog for me so as not to miss any of the embarrassing events out . . .
It’s back in the garage this week to press on with the car before the panels arrive - it’s going to be Christmas before we know it and then the NEC will be upon us shortly after that.   I’ll be back next week to look back over how the year has gone for me.
Thanks as ever for reading

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