MkII Cortina Perana V6 racer

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Re: MkII Cortina Perana V6 racer

Post by KSF » Mon 14 Nov 2016, 17:16

Back with the Cortina, I still did not have a clear idea of how to finish off the floorplates, but I started putting the rest of them in so long, riveting them in place and shaping the curved bits. It kept me busy for a while.
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As here at the front there were quite a few places where the welds were between new plates, I had a go at some more stick welding.
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During this time I had started debating the merits and strengths of just putting dozyns of rivets in. The argument goes along the lines of "the car is getting a welded cage in anyway, maybe it is strong enough" and so on. How strong could the original spotwelds have been anyway... It was never going to work or be done that way, but desperation and unwillingness to admit defeat with my stick welding led me to strange thoughts.

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Re: MkII Cortina Perana V6 racer

Post by KSF » Mon 14 Nov 2016, 17:27

Fortunately, I had a friend that took pity on me and offered me the use of his MIG welder to get the floor in and done. I gratefully accepted that, much as I dislike borrowing stuff, it was the only way left. I would be able to get over the speed bump and also had the use of the welder for long enough to 'quickly' get the cage in.

There is another long story here that I will cut short, I had problems with the welder and in the process almost bought a new one. Just as well I did not, because much later we found out there was a problem with the last bit of gas in the bottle. The welder was fine! :evil:

Not too many pics of all that, but here below all the welds in and busy with clean-up.
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...and not to long after that the whole floor painted with Duram NS1.
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Under the car I did much the same, anglegrinder with sanding disc clean-up, heavy wirebrushing with drill and then copious amounts of NS1.

With that, I could finally close the door on this miserable chapter of the car. Next up was fitting the roll cage.

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Re: MkII Cortina Perana V6 racer

Post by Shauns » Tue 15 Nov 2016, 08:57

Nice find on that Sierra,
The XR6s are beginning to become scarce now, especially those roll top bucket seats. I went and saw a set last week and the frames were welded up terribly. Even tho the owner refused to budge on his riduculous asking price.
Build coming along real nice ,
2014 Toyota Fortuner D4D (current)
2005 Toyota Tazz 130 (current)
1989 Ford Sapphire 2.0i GLE - FSH - Grosvenor Pinetown - In Storage for now.
1977 Ford Mk 2 Escort 4 door - Kent Screamer - In progress

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Re: MkII Cortina Perana V6 racer

Post by KSF » Tue 15 Nov 2016, 16:40

Before the roll cage happened, there was a small detour again, for a week or so. This was already well into November of 2015 and I wanted to be in a position to get the Sierra running as soon as we have clarity on the rules. In preparation for that, I started stripping out the interior.
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I had also made a deal with my main wheeler/dealer friend (we don't wheel and deal with other people, just with each other. Cars, parts, labour etc) that he would put together a rollcage for me over Dec/Jan.
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Stripping a Sierra compared to a Cortina MkII is vastly different. There is so much more in the Sierra to take out. Looking at how high the car sat on its wheels also gives one an idea of the weight it carries around. Depending on which class it goes to (pre-87 or Fines) some of it or most of it has to go back in and on. But to get a decent welded 6-point cage it, stripping it bare is best.

After this exercise the car left on a trailor and off to his home workshop. I'll post some pics later on of the cage, it is really beautifully done.

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Re: MkII Cortina Perana V6 racer

Post by KSF » Tue 15 Nov 2016, 17:08

So it was the month of roll cages, after the Sierra left I went back to the Cortina and started getting the cage in.

I did not build this from scratch, but used the one I had cut out of the Taunus before. The Taunus is a similar overall shape, just bigger. So much of the parts like the cage, lexan windows, aluminium door panels and so on will fit with a bit of trimming.

To get it out of the Taunus I had cut it in three pieces. To get the pieces into the Cortina took a bit more cutting, but I got them in with lots of contortions and trials and errors. Good thing the doors and windowglass is out.

Here below some of the early mock-up and trimming operations. The front was cut in two, so after some measurements, some 75mm had to be cut off, that is about how much the Cortina is narrower.
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Also the pipe that runs left to right under the dash area turned out to be right in front of the Cortina dash, so it was removed and later added in lower down.

With the front in place and bolted down through the floor, the back section was added. I am short of pics of all those steps, the back bit in the end was all but taken apart completely since very little of it could just be narrowed easily, especially not the cross.

Below the whole cage is just about in already.
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Most of the cage's welding was with stick again. Welding the footplates to the floor and also doubler plates under the car was done with the MIG. The plates are also bolted through.
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In a couple of places I also added plates between the cage pipes and the car's bodywork, typically at the dash level, on the pillars at the front and the B pillars, bottom and shoulder height.
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Missing from this sequence is the inevitable clean-up, grinding, etc and in this case a layer of etchcoat over the bare areas. I like Duram NS5 and in black. Those red ones just looks wrong in a car, even if it gets covered over later.

Last view of the cage, here not cleaned or painted yet.
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Re: MkII Cortina Perana V6 racer

Post by KSF » Tue 15 Nov 2016, 17:29

With the cage done, it was getting closer to where final bodywork prep could commence. Up to now the flares were left in in the rough shape and the next big step was to get them finalized and ready.

Missing pics here again, but it took some time sitting with each of them to finetune the shape a bit. With that done, some noisy work with angle grinder and sanding disc to get to a bright bare metal finish.
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With all 4 in bright bare metal, outside and inside, I added a couple coats of etchcoat again, NS5. No pics of that step.

The next job (a personal favorite!) was to lay down several layers of glassfibre on both in and outside. A further couple of layers goes onto the inner rear from inside the boot. It is for me a messy job, often I end up throwing away the shirt I am wearing (especially from the upside down bits to do the insides). So no way I was touching my phone to take pics with those sticky hands.

End result, after some trimming of the excess matting looks something like this.
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There may be some debate about whether one should lay down the GF on the raw bare metal or on top of etch coat like I did here. I'd like to hear some opinions, but the fact is I don't trust GF resin to etch, bond and seal the metal like etchcoat would. And the GF resin bonds readily with the etch coat.
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Re: MkII Cortina Perana V6 racer

Post by KSF » Wed 16 Nov 2016, 16:53

I forgot to add yesterday in the post above, that was also the last action on the project for 2015. Between that day and the start of the holidays a week or two later, I spent many long hours in the garage revamping a little 6" trailor (always forget if it is a Venter or Karet) that I picked up for cheap. I have that "I can fix that, no problem" sickness. The trailor nearly drove me off my rocker and developed within me a deep hatred of rust and rust repairs. In the end we left a day late because of this thing.

I thought to add that bit, as it added to my state of mind in January of this year, 2016, when it was time to get back to the Cortina project. Its rust was now removed and so on, but I was still not really motivated to get back to it. The Sierra project's imminent return, complete with cage was also distracting me.

In any case, by February I started tinkering with the car again. With the mudguard's GF now fully cured, I was not quite happy with the rigidity and strength, so I added some more layers of GF. I think in total it ended with 5 layers on the outside and 4 inside. This is the woven matting. Chopstrand you need less, but I found that more difficult to shape on the curves and edges, so I prefer to not use it.

At this time the doors also went back on to check clearance at the back (where I stole a bit from the door frame to allow a bigger flare).
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The rear doors need a little bit of trimming to clear the mudguard. Actually, I should have just trimmed the edge, but instead of that tried something that just ended up looking awefull.
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In my imagination before it would look neat and get blended into the flare.
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In reality it just ended up looking ..uhm.. not neat.

So I trimmed off the little winglets.

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All this bending and tweaking also made a bit of a mess of the edge.
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But not too badly, a bit of finetuning following by filling and sanding... I like how that line, "filling and sanding" , can make a really big job sound simple. :cry: :lol:

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Re: MkII Cortina Perana V6 racer

Post by KSF » Wed 16 Nov 2016, 17:14

Around about this time, the Sierra came back. Pre-87 rules were already published the year before and meant you had to run on semi-slicks and no flaring of arches are allowed. It will remain like that for at least next year (2017) and probably beyond. It meant I could not build the car I had envisioned in 2015 when I bought the Sierra. Clubmans remains an option where you can flare, but are limited to 8" rims. Also, it is really hard to be competitive there with a 30 year old car running a 40 year old engine. It is more suited to modern machinery and now also allow turbochargers, which takes it well away from the type of car I am interested in building. Also far more expensive than what I want to spend on racing.

In the end, I started to prepare the Cortina further. Engine and dummy box out, suspension raised at the back (the slave wheels from the Sierra would not clear) and coil springs added at the front.

By now the car was filthy dirty from garage dust, grindings, GF dust, bits of flux, welding rod stubs etc and so on. I brushed and vacuumed out what felt like a couple of bucket loads, then dragged it outside for a wash and hose down.
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It had not seen sunlight in years and surprised me in how white and bright it became as the dirt washed away.
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Just a good buff and polish, ready for decals to go on!
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Re: MkII Cortina Perana V6 racer

Post by KSF » Wed 16 Nov 2016, 17:32

So now I had two cars to work on. The Cortina (at my obvious snail's pace of working) would take all of 2016 just to get prepped and painted. Sierra I thought I could get running in Fine Car trim before winter. In that trim all my options are still open to later on go to Pre-87 or Clubmans. My plan was to do the bare minimum to get it legal and get started.

I had discussed before with my cousin who managed a panel shop about the possibility of them doing the prep and spray, so those talks got revived. Some discussions between us and the shop owner (petrol in his veins car fan too) and we struck a deal. My car would go there for the work as part paid for, part favor, part sponsorship. We also agreed that it would not get priority above customer cars, but would be worked on when the shop's workload is low. This suited me quite well and would give me time to work on the Sierra and at the same time, the Cortina progresses and gets done properly. I can do bodywork, but am far from an expert and in any case did not look forward to the messy and dusty work in the close confines of my workspace.

So one sunny weekend and with the help of my wheeler dealer friend, it was moved.
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This is Young's Body&Spray in Goodwood. Owner is Tienie.

From here on in I cannot give detailed commentary as I was not present and part of it. But I think the pics explains it all well enough.

First order of business was to scrape the mess from the enginebay area. It looked like either enamel painted on with a brush, or maybe the worst spray job of an engine bay ever.
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On these pics one can also see some of the modifications I did where the master cylinders would go. Plus the space I made in the mudguard inner for the brake booster.
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Back at home I got stuck into the Sierra. Best laid plans (of doing the minimum to get it legal) promptly flew out the window.

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Re: MkII Cortina Perana V6 racer

Post by ZA Perana » Wed 16 Nov 2016, 20:08

I am really enjoying this thread. Building a race car is something many of us would like to do but finding time, space, money and motivation can be stumbling blocks when I read threads like this the idea re surfaces.
Alfa GTV 3.0
Ford Capri Perana V8
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Wait not for tomorrow to do what can be done today, live each day for one knows not what the next day may hold.

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