Mk1 Escort Rebuild – Retropower Gordon Murray Episode 4


In this episode the guys continue on the metalwork and Gordon Murray the legendary designer of the McLaren F1 drops in to check up on progress.

Here’s Episode 4:








Transcript :

that’s better something like this that
you can do absolutely bespoke driving
position it’s you’re going to jump in
and just feel right you know
yeah well it’s all go and activity in
here today but yeah we’ve come a long
way since the last time we talked about
the car I think we were just doing the
quarters last time we’d done war and I
think the other one was working to go on
that’s obviously now on and then we kind
of turned their attention to the sills
we should think would be straightforward
and we had a patent sale you know a
replacement panel to go on there and
after the after the sort of joy of how
good the court found were we were
expecting all the panels to be that good
and the sills were awful so bad in fact
that we just didn’t even bother using
them we’ve made our own completely from
scratch I mean they were just so kind of
unchristian and there’s a suede line
under here that runs all the way along
and obviously the back part of its on
the quarter panel and that flows into
the sill and it was probably eight mil
different from one to the other so it
wasn’t gonna line up and I know you’re
never really gonna look under here at
this line but it just wasn’t gonna do
when it would have been that much effort
to redo the panel’s that we had we just
thought we’d make them from scratch so
we just completely made the sills up all
the way from from the front corner where
they meet the a post so we’ve joined
into the course panel there
and then once we’ve done that we had a
bit of head-scratching over the floors
we’ll just open the door again we have
some rust in the floors both sides which
we saw early on and I’m kind of more we
looked at it we saw pinholes elsewhere
there was a few pinholes at the back
there’s a normally a crossmember that
runs under the seat and that once we’d
remove that there was quite a lot of pin
holding under there as well it was kind
of all pointing in the direction of
there being quite a lot of sections to
make and we knew we were going to have
to call the tunnel out anyway and after
a bit of sort of head scratching and
chewing and fro and we thought you know
what we’re going to be better just to
replace the whole floor so we took the
whole of the original floor pan out
bought a complete floor pan repair panel
and cut the tunnel section out of that
because we knew that was going to be
different and put put a whole new floor
in basically and it was it was also
again no ice with the floor off to be
able to get inside the chassis rails and
that’s something we’ve deleted on about
the whole time it’s being able to get
inside all the areas that you can’t
normally get to you know what when we
had the quarters off we were able to get
to the insides of the inner courses you
know and the white walls with the floors
off we could get to the inside of the
chassis rails completely so we’ve
cleaned all of that out and we’re
actually able to epoxy Prime inside the
hollow section of the chassis rail
before we then put the floor on and
we’ve been able to do the floor almost
exactly how it would have been
originally and then we’ve kind of set
about doing the tunnel and so we already
had the gearbox on here last time and it
was pretty obvious the height it sits at
the tunnel was gonna need extending
quite a long way back so we’ve actually
fabricated a complete new tunnel from
the front to about here because we were
doing a complete floor plan swap it that
also allowed us to do a little trick on
the floor plan which was that we could
cut the old one at a certain position
and then cut the new one in a higher
position and then join the two tunnel
sections together to actually give us a
raise transmission total that looks kind
of like the original
on the rear section there and then the
Front’s just been completely unmade
we’ve used we use just the tunnel top
part there from the original ass just
because it was a convenient form and it
seemed pointless to remake that part
when it was okay anyway and all of that
was kind of working toward your overall
driving position obviously got a seat in
here now and that’s you know the idea is
Gordon’s gonna come in have a sit in it
and see how it feels I’ve set this up to
my driving position because I’m actually
not a dissimilar size he’s a tiny bit
taller than me but we’re not that
dissimilar so we’ve set the seat really
nice in a while I’m 6 foot 2 he’s
probably 6-3 6-4 I guess and so Henry
was an issue from a kiss effect so we
felt like pretty low a little bit angled
back so you’ve got a nice bit of support
under your legs and that then allows us
to basically work out where we were
where the steering wheel feels
comfortable and also just see what it’s
like the foot room and it’s not too bad
the tunnel is a lot bigger than the
original there’s not really any
encroachment into the clutch space at
all it would be nicer if there was a
room for a foot to rest and if we offset
the pedals to the right we could do that
but I doubt that’s going to be the route
we go down but that’s going to be
personal preference that’s what it’s all
about really is getting you know the
drive embellishment is so much down to
personal preference if we can get it him
in there and get everything in the
position he wants then we can do it
exactly how he wants it
yeah another bit which were literally
working on right now is the front end
we’ve obviously cut out all of the front
but then we’ve changed the radiator side
panels and we’ve made new panels there
and this crossmember panel here and
we’ve kind of designed those around the
radiator were using and the oil cooler
that’s going to go in the front and also
taking into account the the dry sump
tank which is going to go this side
does some pompous is on that side so
we’ve got to get oil routed from there
around via the cooler to the tank and
then back from the tank to the pump and
we were kind of looking at the neatest
way to do that and also mount the
fabricated a lower radiator that’s going
in there so what we’ve come up with is
we’ve raised the radiator height very
slightly I mean we’ve got to watch
bonnet clear and so we were getting the
bonnet on there to check that but we’ve
raised the radiator a bit higher than
they would normally be fitted which has
left a space kind of underneath the
radiator behind here on the back of this
crossmember to run the the line that
comes from the dry sump tank back into
the engine or into the oil pump and
we’re going to be designing this dry
sump tank completely to fill that space
exactly the hole over here is for cold
air intake to the engine so there’ll be
a little bit of pipe coming off that to
a plenum on the throttle bodies there
and then we’ve just put this little
recess in this side just because my sit
reason is really just cuz it looks it
kind of mirrors the shape on both sides
there’s no more reason to it than that
the oil coolers going to mount on rubber
bobbins which go here and they’re like
little double stud mounts and you have
to be able to get to the back of them to
put a nut on these slots here are
actually slightly functional in that you
can get in with a spanner underneath by
the time this is closed off with the
valance here you can still get in with a
spanner to put the nuts on the back of
those mounts
like two hours we excited yeah yeah what
until Gordon gets it yeah yeah I’m
really excited I can’t wait to see him
it’s it’s been a while I must have been
the one formula exhibition last year I
cotton when it was October November time
I think that’s the last time I saw him
so it’d be really good to catch you up
last time he was here
the car was was just still fat on its
wheels over there and we had a good look
around it and a good chat but no he
hasn’t seen it since then so it’s
obviously seeing the pictures but
there’s been a bit of a roller coaster
work since then but it’s really yeah
it’s really coming together it’s
exciting to be thinking more now about
the design side of you know the interior
and the suspension and kind of
progressing with that rather than just
chipping away at rock repair because
that’s kind of the more exciting bit is
that is the suspension design and the
interior design and and kind of all the
changes I guess what sums outfits to
stuck the custom work to it rather than
just the standard repairing bits to how
they were you know that that’s the thing
that really gets us going is it’s kind
of putting our own stamp on it
I remember where we were at last time
but there’s been a bit of a redesign in
terms of the suspension so what I’m
trying to do is make use of the strength
of the diff casing and try and minimize
weight this is the rear carrier
structure the way it’s bolted to the
diff at the moment is is a very loose
mock-up this plate is a temporary
mock-up piece which is just a laser-cut
three millimeter steel outline of the
rough shape of the aluminium billet
piece that’s gonna go on the back of the
diff casing that’s 50 millimeters thick
in total machine down in a lot of places
and a lot of weight taken out of it to
lighten it but that will bolt to the
back of the diff casing and this will
bolt to the back of that billet piece
and then all of that will then hold the
this ear will be part of the aluminium
piece but at that point it’ll be 50 mil
thick and the wishbone will then bolt to
it there so the upright will be sitting
so the upright will be sitting roughly
there the TOI link in there and then
that this rear part of the wishbone will
be mounted to a an aluminium boss which
is part of a billet rear cover for the
diff which will keep the oil in mount
this carrier which will hold the whole
lot into the car and mount the rear half
of the wishbone then the front half of
the wishbone will be mounted to another
cradle which doesn’t yet exist because
I’ve been kind of working on how to do
and then between the two there’ll be a
tie bar that links the rear Bush to the
front Bush and also acts as the nut
there’ll be a bolt in from the back to
hold that half and a bolt in from the
front to hold this half of the wishbone
and the whole lot will be tied together
by a tie bar that’s like a big long nut
it’s the tube in the middle with thread
with ready sort of hexagonal sections at
the ends so that will then mean that
that’s completely solid and there’s no
flex between the front and back should
give us pretty good location of the
I’m quite concerned Diwali
now I’m a little bit nervous because
obviously I’m aware that I’m tinkering
around with with bits of rope for
somebody that is going to be rather more
aware of suspension design than I am at
the same time it is a road car we’re not
designing a Formula One car clearly I’m
gonna weigh everything when it’s done
and compare the weight to a live axle
I’m hoping I’m not going to be a huge
percentage heavier than a live axle the
big advantage is the unsprung weight so
I don’t but I don’t want to sacrifice
too much sprung weight for the sake of
reducing you and sprung but I’m kind of
optimistic that all the component
weights are quite quite low so we
shouldn’t we shouldn’t be too far away
that’s the rear diff cover the bit
that’s missing out there on the on the
table where that laser-cut bit of three
mil steel was was bolted to the back of
the diff that’s where this will bolt on
that all these bolt holes bolt to the to
the rear of the diff housing there’s a
considerable thickness of aluminium
there and that’s that’s actually an inch
thick there it’s a bit excessive but we
meet I need to space all of it back for
packaging in the car and I want to
reinforce the back of the diff housing
quite heavily because I’m then going to
be putting a wishbone load into it that
point there that’s that’s where the
wishbone is carried the wishbone Bush
will sit on the back face of that and
then the to put that into double in
the same plane as that wishbone bush
that big carry a frame that you saw on
the table then sits in the same plane as
the wishbone Bush but that mounts to
that hole and that hole and that hole
and that hole on there so that that
trapezium shape then sits in the middle
of there the immediate next steps are
get that made we’ve gonna get man up the
road to machine that in aluminium sixty
eighty to t6 aluminium and get it
anodized and once that’s done then that
can bolt onto the diff make the tie rods
that tie between the front and rear
suspension points they’re actually being
done now they’ll be doing hopefully
before the end of the day make the tie
rods that tie the other side of the
upright to the wishbone add the wishbone
rear wishbone reinforcer once I’ve had a
little chat with Gordon about it because
I’m not still not convinced I need that
so I’m holding fire on that until I’ve
had a chat with Gordon
it’s interesting how much having
somebody who in his in his car
exhibition has the weight in red of
every single car there it’s amazing how
much that focuses you I’m trying not to
put weight so I mean I’m trying to
trying to keep the weight down as much
as I can but equally I’m aware that it’s
a road car and I kind of it break so
so I’m just doodling that but yeah the
the front the main front mount is the
other significant bit of fabrication
once those bits are done that’s the rear
suspension basically complete its then
crank it up underneath the car make
eight brackets and some reinforcing
spreader plates weld them to the chassis
and it’s it’s on
positionally it’s all the same that’s
just a laser-cut blank of the card piece
that we’ll be doing in a Dominion mm-hmm
they’ll actually be a 50 mil thick boss
off there which carries half of the
wishbone if you like yeah this frame
will sit then further back because that
I mean your Boise oh yeah yeah well for
its place all that about that that tube
the plane that that that seam will be in
the same plane as that Bush housing
uh-huh and then the double shear for
that Bush housing will come off that
will be a tab off that frame your back
so it’ll be on the other minion boss
this so on the front like what is that
the front leg will be that’s the bit
that’s still not done yet basically that
will be a tube that comes across curves
slightly forward and picks up off two
more bushes onto the inside of the shaft
these are both on to basically share
plates onto the chassis rails
the only question mark I had was I
wasn’t initially and now I’ve got all
nervous about it gonna put any tie
between the front and rear of the
wishbone mm-hmm but I see everybody does
tie for it to the rear of a wishbone
well then I figured that actually the
flexing your bushes will then give you a
little bit of flexing the wishbone and
maybe I oughta tie it well that’s the
only reason you do is because of the
bush flaps yeah
and the wishbone spray yeah now that’s
gonna be tied directly there yeah but
the brackets can’t spread with it but it
could spread against the bushes but
usually with a long wishbone like that
the amount of compression you get in the
end of an end of this cotton reel
it’ll just take be taken out in the bend
yeah yeah and one of the main reasons
people brace these across here if if
these connections here aren’t tied
together on the chassis yeah which they
have spreads the chassis and that’s why
which is why I wanted to put that
tension between them yeah so you take
the spread out of the chassis and you
and you try and like the wishbone if
you’ve got a really solid mounting on
your chassis yes you can usually get
away without that was a long ridge
question if I understand you grow yeah
that’s trapped between there that’s
young to be very stupid yeah yeah cuz
that’s that’s a very big diamond you
Vanessa yes very very stiff and then
that slide back to that and so this is
your difference yeah that would be a
dismount basically another – what’s the
O’s are hang from the overhang there is
is about as you see it there it’s quite
substantially overhang there but that’s
going to be tied on to this tube the
tube will be tied to the diff there and
then the wishbone will be separate to
the tube that won’t be tied directly to
that or that wasn’t the plan at the
minute because the chip will be dire so
then that’s the answer so you either you
either stiffen this up on the chassis
you tie that back to there or your tie
back to here and then you don’t need it
on the wood yeah
I have to say something when you when we
first talked about getting a you know a
good channel I knew this was going I
thought I know unique you guys know what
you’re doing but my god the amount of
work you know I’m winning set a good
show I expected a pristine then snow run
I mean a lots of people I’ve I’ve made
that comment and I can’t help but think
yeah yeah we’ve replaced a ridiculous
amount of metal on but the fact is from
our experience yeah a lot of the cars
that look outwardly great you strip them
back there’s a how I was going to say in
watching the blog’s that is the good
thing because now you’ve had to do that
much work there’s no there’s no hidden
stuff anymore
Press print right I better sit we
basically Don the seat at the moment
roughly for how I like it
there’s a good starting point there’s a
lot of lots of you on you can slide it
for for working out but the biggie that
not probably wants to talk about is it’s
the steering wheel position which is
what your thoughts initially before I
start putting too many year yeah see
many of ours in dislike is that the
right time – it’s going to be yes from I
would say smaller but it’s your
preference really I mean my preference
would be probably an inch and half
smaller yeah it just feels a bit big
yeah yeah I wouldn’t I wouldn’t go more
than an inch smaller than what is that
360 or you know I don’t know
I’m just how tall are you by the way six
four I said I said earlier when we were
talking about it it’s got to be 63 or 64
because I’m 62
you definitely sort of them it feels a
little bit high design but but it’ll be
better of obviously with a smaller wheel
it’s this angle here the throttle could
be anywhere could but the break in the
throttle are probably okay there funnily
enough that was kind of our view is that
the frame I certainly my thoughts rid of
the brakes bang on where it is now
now then we’ve got the pedals in the
right place you know that’s I’d be
sitting I’m really long in the leg yeah
yeah angle of the seat base how’s that
thing seat back some of this oh it’s
rigged it’s fixed so that feels just
yeah absolutely
that’s better
and with the slight least I’ve got a
little bit of an issue there but with
the slightly smaller wheel that would
probably be okay as it comes this way
see more instruments of course yeah cuz
you don’t really want to ever ever pull
your shoulder forward when you’re at the
top of the wheel and that’s about it
yeah and if we could just move the
pedals that would be great I mean if
you’re going to all this trouble we
might all get it up to it’ll probably
over an inch and a half the offset
slightly tight so give us enough room so
where does that put the seat well whoops
a long way back it’s a good job it’s not
open any boxes
wow that’s no secret
well that’s really good that’s really
good for the weight distribution think
you would never fit anything in the car
with the standard seats to go oh this is
hopeless but it’s totally yeah property
actually at we see much I mean I guess
it’s a little bit of standard it’s
amazing how you’re so much closer to the
rear axle looks great guys
it’s going to be a really mean driving
position because the problem I’ve got
with the classic cars is you know these
poor guys Simon and his poor guys every
time I get a car and it’s cheap rails
out new holes in the floor something
like this that you can do absolutely
bespoke driving position it’s you’re
going to jump in and just feel right you
know feedback was yeah ridiculously
constructive like the seats sitting we
felt he was generally very happy with a
lot of things and we’ve nailed exactly
where we want everything and all the
design meeting went yeah perfect
basically well where we’d given choices
they had a clear idea of what he wanted
where we’d made decisions for him he was
happy with those two seconds though
I like that any other thing which is
massively controversial a split opinion
usually I’m just casually wondering
about having it on the gauge faces yeah
off the record
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