I thought that it would be a good idea to work on some other aspects of the car to get me motivated to troubleshoot the starter problems. I cleaned out my garage and rearranged it so that I wouldn't have to keep moving my body buck out of the garage everytime I wanted to work on the car. I wish I had done this earlier! I also decided to start working on installing the aluminum in the trunk area. I began the process of measuring and fitting the aluminum this past weekend.
TOTAL TIME THIS WEEKEND: 6 hours
August 5-9, 2002:
Spent the week working on more aluminum installation. Used my Dremel quite a bit to help grind down some areas of the trunk aluminum. The top aluminum panel that goes around the roll bar was shifted a little to one side so I needed to grind a bunch to get it to fit properly.
I also figured that I should change out all of my battery cables to a lower gauge. I found a local place, Tidewater Fleet Supplies, that was able to make some 1 gauge cables for me. They professionally crimped them and placed heat shrink around the terminals. These cables look much better than those thin 4 gauge wires that I originally used.
TOTAL TIME THIS WEEKEND: 6 hours
August 10-11, 2002:
Spent the morning hooking up the cables that I had recently purchased and riveting the lower trunk floor to the frame. Turned out pretty good. Well the moment of truth was finally awaiting. I hooked up the battery and double checked all of my connections. I turned the ignition on an pushed my starter switch and......IT STARTS AGAIN! The 1 gauge cables did the trick.
TOTAL TIME THIS WEEKEND: 8 hours
August 15,16, 2002:
Took two days off from work to pick up my new kitten. I now have an addition to the house. She's a 12 week old, Brown Maine Coon kitten. Also got a visit from Sean Westmoreland. He helped me out with bleeding of my brakes. It is so much easier with two people. Actually I don't think it is possible to bleed the brakes by yourself unless you have that special contrataption. The brakes are nice and stiff now.
I also started the vehicle up for Sean but it required a jump from my Honda because the battery voltage was hovering below 11 V. I figured that my alternator wasn't charging my battery. I'll need to troubleshoot this later.
TOTAL TIME: 1 hour
August 17-18, 2002:
Did a search on the FF Cobra site to figure out why my battery wasn't recharging. Found out that I need a 510 Ohm resistor to take the place of the Alternator light that is on the donor gauge pod. I will probably run a resistor in parallel with another light so that I will have an alternator light on my dash board. I'll see if this fixes the problem.
Bought some grommets for the battery cable to run them through the floor of the trunk. I purchased 1/2" grommets from NAPA and they fit perfectly around the cable. I did need to struggle a little with them to get them over the heat shrink on my custom cables. I also decided that it may be a good idea to cut a hole in the floor of the trunk above the battery so that I can access the battery terminals. This would make reinstalling a battery easier when it is time to do so.
TOTAL TIME THIS WEEKEND: 1 hour
August 23-25, 2002:
Got to meet with another local FFR builder, Shawn Simonton. Come to find out he lives only 10 minutes from me. It's amazing how many good guys there are out there that are building these cars. I learned a lot from the short time that I spoke with him and he also gave me a ride in his cool looking yellow and black roadster. This was the first time that I ever rode in one of these! These cars got a lot of kick to them. He definitely motivated me to get off my butt and get this car finished. Thanks again Shawn.
As motivated as I was to start working on the car, it was also East Coast Surfing Championship weekend. Spent most of my time at the beach for the rest of the weekend. I did however get to solder the resistor and a charging light into the wiring harness to get the alternator to charge the battery. This did the trick! My battery is now charging.
TOTAL TIME THIS WEEKEND: 2 hours
August 29 - September 2, 2002:
Labor Day weekend! Surf was up again so did more surfing. The big thing that I accomplished this weekend before heading up to DC on Saturday was go on my first Go-Kart ride! I started her up and pulled out of my garage. It was starting to rain so I only put in reverse and 1st gear. You couldn't wipe the smile of my face when I did this! I'm happy to know that my transmission works and the clutch installation was fine too.