Picked up my tires from Merchants Tire today. They look great! I can't wait to get these things mounted on the frame to see how they look. I still have to bleed the brake system. I attempted to do some bleeding today before heading up to DC again. It looks like I'll have to replace the brake lines that came mounted to the rear end. I can't loosen the connections to bleed the brakes without twisting the line. It's not that big a deal, I'll just need to buy some new brake lines and bend them.
October 6-8, 2001:
Columbus Day weekend. Went up to DC to visit Nate and Kelly again. Didn't get too much done on the car. I'm finding that between my two classes, work and social stuff, I don't have much time for the car.
I did clean up a few engine parts on Monday. I even painted the intake manifold with heat resistant paint. It looks pretty good. I just found out that the Army Ten Miler run was cancelled so I won't be heading up to DC this coming weekend. I'm going to spend some serious time on the build this weekend. Hopefully!
TIME THIS WEEKEND: 2 hours
October 13-14, 2001:
Surf was good again this weekend so I spent most of the day Saturday at the beach. Water is getting colder quickly as we move into fall. Probably the last time I'll go into the water until next year. I did put in some time in the evening to take car of brake issues. While trying to bleed my brakes during the past week I discovered that I couldn't open the bleed screws for the drum brakes. I think they were stuck from being old and also from the POR 15 on them. I decided to go ahead and replace the drum brake cylinders. I also decided to replace the brake lines that ran along the rear axle from the flexible hose. I figured it's better to get the brake lines right.
I did my best to try and bleed the brakes but it is difficult if not near impossible to do it by yourself. There must be still a lot of air in the lines because I don't have any brake pressure yet. I'll get some help later this week to do it correctly.
I also tried to get the fuel lines flared on Sunday. I went to the Langley Auto Craft Shop to use their flaring tool. I don't think they have all of the proper components to properly flare the lines so I'm going to try and use the tool from Ft Monroe's craft shop.
TIME THIS WEEKEND: 8 hours
October 18, 2001
Went to the Ft Monroe Auto Craft Shop during lunch to find that they had a brand new flaring kit. I read the instructions and practiced on some scrap tubing that I had. I was simply amazed that I was able to double flare a piece of steel tubing. The key to a good flare is to make sure that the edges of the tubing are properly chamfered (bevel the outside edges). This allows the adapter in the flaring tool to make the tubing bow outward. You then can easily make the lip fold in for the double flare.
October 20-21, 2001
After helping out at my church's bazaar I went back to the craft shop to do the actual fuel lines. I had chamfered the tubing the night prior and it took me less than 30 minutes to double flare two pieces of tubing. To think that I was going to have a plumber do this for me! The cost for me to use the tool came out to $1.50!
When I got home I installed the fuel lines under the frame and secured them with the clamps provided. The 5/16" line is very stiff. I ended up modifying the instructions from the manual for the 1/4" tubing. I decided to cut it short instead of running it all the way near the gas tank. I purchased more 1/4" rubber fuel hose instead. It would have been a real pain in the butt to snake the steel tubing through the frame to get near the gas tank.
I also got the brakes bled with the help of my friend Curt. The rear brakes bled easily but we ran into some problems with the front. We figured out that the adapter to the master cylinder wasn't tight so air was leaking through it. After tightening it the front brakes bled fine.
On Sunday afternoon I discovered a few deficiencies which will require some work and investigation. While putting on the rubber fuel hoses to the steel lines, I discovered that the steel tube that goes into the fuel pump has a hole that rusted through. I'm going to have to get that fixed.
I mounted the wheels and discovered that the front had excessive negative camber. Even when I pulled the upper control arms out as far as they could go, there was still that negative camber. I posted on the cobra forum and learned that this has happened to several people. Apparently FFR has sent the wrong IFS bracket to several people. I think that I have that problem.
While double checking the brakes, I further discovered that brake fluid is leaking from the adapter on the master cylinder. Whew, 2 steps forward and 3 steps backwards.
TOTAL TIME THIS WEEKEND: 6 hours
October 27-28, 2001
Did a lot of work on the engine this weekend. I gathered up enough courage to remove the cylinder heads. Looked inside of the cylinders and everything appeared ok. A little water seeped through the spark plug holes so there was a little bit of rust on on one of the pistons.