Slow progress is better than no progress right? I spent 4 Months prepping the car for paint and its starting to feel like it will take as long again to put it back together.
Following on from the last post I decided the seats were going to have to come out in order to clean the carpet. Something I had resisted doing while I was prepping the bodywork as psychologically I guess I really wanted to keep part of the car intact.
Also the interior (heavily refreshed in 2011 was one of the nicer parts of the car and in theory* shouldnt have need to be touched. In the end I bowed to the inevitable, the seats had to come out in order to get the pop rivet gun in place to re-rivet the aluminium door seal protector.
The carpet underneath also needed a proper clean:
The overcarpet is only held in with a few poppers and is easily removed, So I took advantage of having the seats out to repair a crack in the rear footwell that was caused by the car slipping off a jack a few years ago.
With the carpets up I've also added a bit of anti vibration dampening. we use similar products at work and they help remove transmitted vibration and don't add too much weight.
I've also added a some more sound insulation, to the floors, heater blower motors etc
Lousy phone picture but you get the idea:
Fitted the refurbished tailights and a few more badges...
The 5a has quite a bit of steelwork in the nose of the car. Its a clever bit of design which does several important jobs: It ties the Front bumpers to the chassis, Supports the nose of the car preventing the fibreglass from drooping. It serves as ducting to the radiator and it forms the base for the tray holds the spare wheel.
The Reliant parts list 1971 gives a reasonable illustration:
The steelwork that was on my car was in pretty poor condition its a wet area of the car and takes a lot of punishment from the elements. The steelwork on my car had also deformed when I hit the deer last year. As the picture of the drivers side triangle below shows.
The steelwork deforming in the event of a crash seems to be a real advantage of this design as the sacrificial triangle absorbs some of the impact and reduces the chance of damage being transmitted back onto the chassis.
A look round a one of my garages full of parts and I found a reasonable used set of parts:
Steelwork refitted, the stainless grill went in first!
With the nose steel in I moved onto the bumper Irons, The ones that came off were a bit misshapen and corroded they could possibly have been saved with a bit of work....
Fortunately, I had some New old stock ones,
Which I used as a template to get some new ones made in stainless:
I've protected the bodywork with self adhesive rubber strip on the back of the bumper brackets & bumper irons.
Heres a photo of the refitted bumper irons and stainless overiders fitted. The overiders are a Harrington’s set and while the standard of finish is reasonable they did require quite a bit of adjustment.
As a reward for reading this far here’s a few more photos of shiny bits that are now attached:
A new roof Ariel
Sill trims (etched stainless attached with stainless pop rivets)
Factory spec Lucas door reflectors, (only some cars seem to have these from factory) and mine was missing them.
I reattached a new piece of exterior viynl to each of the B-pillars.
With the b pillar trims back on I could think about reattaching the gutters,
I gave them a clean to remove historic overspray:
The cleaned gutter then had some new butyl tape applied to make it waterproof. its about 1mm thick by 12mm wide.
Luckily Dave had a spare day and was able to give me a hand refitting them.
We started at the C-pillar and worked our way forward.
Peeling the cover back of the tape in stages to prevent it sticking in the wrong places.
Here’s the finished result: