Mike Macartney

REPORTS ON A 1914 HUMBERETTE RESTORATION

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15 hours ago, Roger Zimmermann said:

Are you not afraid that, when the tension is released that the frame will not spring back? What with wetting the wood?

 

Roger

I hope that the steel corner brackets that I am fitting to the corner joins of the door frame will hold the door in the correct place. I made and fitted one bracket yesterday and it got me halfway there. I'll make the other bracket today and see if that does the trick. I am not too keen on wetting the wood as it is a steel panel on an ash frame and may lead to more rust in the future between the steel panel and the wood frame. Thanks for the suggestions.

Mike

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Just a thought to consider. For whatever it is worth. Many years ago, my brother took a college course in Library Sciences involving preservation and restoration of books and documents.  We talked about some of what they taught. He told me that when "wetting" a paper in order to unfold it without breaking the paper, use alcohol (basically rubbing alcohol).  Water damages the paper fibers, results in stains or deterioration that causes the paper to break down. The alcohol  does not damage or stain the paper, softens it and allows the paper to be bent and blocked without breaking. Then it evaporates cleanly.  I have used it to soften and flatten paper and cardboard myself on several occasions.

I do not know if it should be used on wood for that purpose or not? Wood glues may be adversely affected, so not soaking near any joints may be wise. It MAY help to spring wood framework without future rusting issues.

Since I have not tried this myself? I would like for others with superior knowledge or experience to comment.

Just an idea to consider.

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Wayne

Thanks for sharing the information on the use of alcohol to preserve books and documents. It is possible it may work with wood, its an interesting thought. Like most of restorers of 'old stuff' I am always willing to learn new tricks.

 

My jacking of the door to the correct shape and fitting 4-corner brackets seemed to have worked. I tried just two corners brackets at first. These reduced the twist by half the amount needed. An extra 2-corner brackets did the trick. I can't believe the time I have spent getting the door to move, it's taken nearly a week to move only a 1/4"!018.thumb.jpg.4d2f8bcec0049515e0e007b65c6b1158.jpg

After all the brackets were welded and blasted clean. I fitted them in place with the door still jacked up with the bar across and the cord holding up the corners. Then removed each one at a time to paint the backs and underside of the brackets with etching primer before fitting them back in place. When all four were screwed back in place I let the hydraulic jack down.019.thumb.jpg.bef43755cbe7d053511fe3f0c6bfb210.jpg

Now to see if it fits?020.thumb.jpg.64dedce69626668d2373f78869479568.jpg

Not absolutely perfect but a hell of a lot better than it was. And I still have room in the middle for the original map pocket.

A good clear up of the bench was now needed before I get on with the next problem to overcome.

The main tub of the body is an ash frame with steel panels fitted. At the rear is a small trunk (we call it a boot in the UK). This trunk is all made of wood. It appears that at some time in the cars life there has been something heavy in the trunk and when braking hard it has gone forward and split the wood that is behind the seat. A lot of work would be needed to replace this split wood as lot of the rear would need to come apart to get to it. Once the upholstery is in place and the trunk lid fitted any repair can't be seen. I had a spare bit of plywood that I could cut to size and fit it on the inside of the trunk. I tried measuring the size of panel required from inside the trunk area, it was impossible. Instead I made a pattern out of cardboard and used this to lay on my plywood to mark it out for cutting. Yesterday I asked my woodwork friend Robert how can you cut plywood with jig saw without the top cut splintering. I told you I know nothing about wood. He said to use a fine blade and run the jig saw at the highest speed. It worked after all these years I seem to have cut a piece of plywood without getting a jagged edge! Your never too old to learn.021.thumb.jpg.d3175818a0635dd47b073f0126c572d3.jpg

The panel between the trunk area and the seat back, showing the split wood (it's not very thick wood). I have marked out 4-holed were I plane to drill and screw the plywood strengthening panel onto the other side.022.thumb.jpg.3d8f30a12fd492c599e49bf47b866a5f.jpg

The carboard template and my section of plywood to strengthen the panel behind the seat back.

I think I will just screw this panel in place rather than glue and screw it. If it is just screwed, at least it can be removed easily, at a later date.

PAINTING WOOD

Has anybody any suggestions with what to do with the preparation of the wood on the outside of the trunk area? I have had lots of experience with painting metal and glass fibre but none with wood. Below is a photo of the left had side of the trunk area where the paint had cracked. The paint has also cracked the same on my 1903 Crestmobile, which I believe had been restored in the 60's or 70's.023.thumb.jpg.63de8241ee442bc61a121f506d3303fa.jpg

  

 

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I have had no suggestions, as yet, to my question as to what to do with the cracked paintwork on the trunk of the Humberette. Somebody can suggest something.

It has been a week or two since I last reported on the progress of the Humberette. It's not that I have not done much, most of the work has been checking over the rolling chassis to find out what has been done and what needs attention. Having bought a project, where both of the previous restoring owners have died, makes life a bit more difficult as I have nobody to ask what has and what has not been done.

We packed the body, wings, doors and wheels into the van and took them to SBL in Wolverhampton for them to remove the paint to check how rusty the body was under the paintwork. It turned out to be a 9-hour driving round trip. The work has now been carried out and so another long trip is planned for this week.

The wheel hubs where the ball bearing race is were covered by means of some circles of plywood so the blasting process would not damage the races.024.thumb.jpg.1cf9dd8fa76904b2f05398bd44364882.jpg

Wheels prepared for blasting with ball races protected

Still trying to get a sizeable 'lump' out of the Sweet Chestnut tree for eventually making the hood bows. Robert and I spend a couple of hours each week in the wood to attempt to remove a 9 foot quarter section length of the trunk. At our ages, Robert is 78, a couple of hours on the chain saw is enough! We have cut across and along the trunk vertically and horizontally at 90 degrees. We only have another 3 to 4 feet to saw before we attack the trunk with the wedges to split out the section we want. Looking at the grain it appears to be very straight.025.thumb.jpg.a13e563afb8cd3f09bf0dfc59dee455b.jpg

The tree we are cutting up for the three hood bows - I thinks there is enough wood for a few problem bends!026.thumb.jpg.423fac9462e530640a01a51c673f6975.jpg

The chassis cleaned up

The chassis was cleaned up with gasoline (petrol) and wiped clean with cleaning thinners. I was surprised to find that work carried out to date by the previous two owners was well done and there where only a couple of areas of the chassis that needed touching up with black paint.027s.thumb.jpg.1f068b622a131f755f4097e820d78fe6.jpg

Slack in LH steering joint (Sorry I have forgotten how to remove one yellow arrowhead - getting old's a wonderful thing!) 

A couple of items that did concern me was the slack in the connection from the drag link to the steering arm joint. Also at the other end of the drag link there was slack in the joint where it connects to the end of the steering rack. After having a look where the problem was with the LH joint I decided to open the hole up in the centre part and make and fit a brass bush to eliminate the slack.028.thumb.jpg.d84416d816495bfada2992feadc7d649.jpg

Slack eliminated with a brass bush and brass thrust washer

That's all for this report. The next report will include overhauling the steering rack and some photos of the soda blasted parts. I never realised that they used steering racks by 1914. I thought they were a lot more modern invention for motorcars than before the first world war.

 

 

 

 

 

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For painting over wood, I've used an epoxy primer from a company here in the states.   https://www.southernpolyurethanes.com/products  You'll find that on page 2, "Epoxy Primer".  The trick to this guy is that, as a polyurethane, it is a little bit flexible.  It will withstand some of the wood movement while also reducing the movement by reducing the moister exchange.   I don't know if they ship across the pond, but the owner there is a great guy and I'm sure he will find a way.

 

Amazing work you're doing with the tree!!  My new goal in life is to be able to use my chainsaw to acquire some lumber from a tree 26 years from now when I'm 78.  A more realistic goal is to still be able to start my chainsaw in 26 years. :)

 

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You are right with Andy of Southern Polyurethanes he is an amazing guy. I emailed him after reading your post and in no time at all I had the following reply:

Mike,
I would strip the paint off down to the wood, then apply a few wet coats of epoxy primer.  Walk away for a day and let the epoxy soak in, cure and seal the wood.  Sand the epoxy after a day or longer with 180-320.  We're just looking for a quick leveling.  Apply two or three coats of epoxy over the sanded epoxy.  Wait overnight, then do what you over the epoxy including applying your color.
Thanks,
Andy
 
I was not expecting to have a reply until at least Monday afternoon. I then replied asking if he could ship to the UK and he instantly replied with the following:
 
Mike,
Unfortunately, its way too expensive to ship a couple of quarts across the pond.
You would access to Diamont/Glassurit and Sikkens over there.  Any off their better grade epoxy primers would do the same thing. 
Just tell the person at the store you want a quart kit of their better epoxy, not their lower tier epoxy. Explain it's for a restoration, not a ten-year-old VW.
Andy
 
I can't thank Luv2Wrench and Andy from Southern Polyurethanes enough for all their help and advice.
 
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Hi, I have got a bit behind with my reports. As soon as the body was back from Soda Blast in Wolverhampton, UK, I wanted to get on with the bodywork. The novelty of filling in the screw heads on the edge beading and rubbing down is now starting to wear off, after a morning of it today I thought I would have a rest and spend the afternoon on writing up the reports.

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One part I did not send for blasting was the Stepney spare wheel. The reason was that it has a couple of brass locking pins and I was concerned that the basting may be too much for the brass. To get rid of the paint and rust that was under the paint, I used a Mule Skinner in an drill.

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For those that have not seen these before they are a wire brush encapsulated in a type resin substance. They last for absolutely ages. The one in the photo is half worn and it has been used for many hours of work on previous restorations. When it stops removing the rust and paint so quickly you just reverse the drill direction and it starts working brilliantly again. In the UK I buy these from Frosts www.frost.co.uk I am sure they are probably available in the USA. I know Frost deals a lot with Eastwood's products. 

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After I had cleaned off as much of the rust as I could I coated it with Kurust to passivate what was left of the rust. The next day the Stepney rim was hung up on the washing line and painted with etching primer and then sprayed with grey primer.

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A lot of the original nickel plating on this car is very worn out and nearly all the nickel has worn off. Some of the parts don't even seem to have any traces of nickel and may have been bras to start with. A trick I found on the internet was that badly tarnished brass can be brought back to life with Tomato Ketchup. I thought I would give it a try. Before I started on the Humberette I had spent a whole week polishing up the brass on my 1903 Crestmobile, not a lot of fun! I was pleasantly surprised that the Tomato Ketchup worked and saved me a lot of polishing by hand. I left the ketchup on for 15 minutes before wiping it off and then buffing with brass polish.

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This is the Lucas acetylene gas generator that is attaches to the right hand running board to supply the front and rear gas lamps.

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I reckon its time for a beer. A friend bought me round this beer to try. I must admit the name OLD ENGINE OIL put's me off a bit!
Hopefully, if I survive trying this beer, I'll try and write a bit more tomorrow. 

 

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2 hours ago, JV Puleo said:

I'll have to see I can find some of that Old Engine Oil the next time I'm in England. Is it local to Norfolk?

https://www.beeradvocate.com/beer/profile/323/875/

 

Looks very tasty... I shall see if it is possible to get some here.

 

Update:  Lucky me!  My local Total Wine location has some in stock.

 

Edited by Luv2Wrench (see edit history)

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The 'OLD ENGINE" beer is brewed in Scotland. https://harviestoun.com/

I really don't know what to say about the beer. It's a bit dark and powerful for my liking 6%. It was a lot nicer than I thought it would be. I think it was the idea of drinking old engine oil that put me off!

Back to the Humberette. OVERHAULING THE STEERING RACK (sorry the photos are not in any particular order)035.thumb.jpg.a279d8a07297432199f34f22f279508a.jpg

The pinion looks fairly unworn and usable. The last owner had filled the steering rack with grease but had not cleaned of all the old grease that had been sitting in inside, probably since 1914!

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The pinion shaft was cleaned with gasoline to get off all the old grease and muck and as the shaft had some rust and marks I cleaned it up in my large lathe.038.thumb.jpg.87eaa667bf6e5ee251ed65ee17e848f7.jpg

To clean the inside of the tube that the pinion shaft rotates in I sprayed some Brake and clutch cleaner down the shaft.039.thumb.jpg.77bf077528cc4988ab7ac48511ee14db.jpg

There was quite a lot of muck in there.040.thumb.jpg.6939aa8124c5dc6fa76082c051111ca8.jpg

I made some balls of paper wipes and kept pushing them through the steering column tube with a rod until a last they started to come out the other end clean.

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Finally I pushed some rag through, just to make sure I had got all the old grease or oil out of the steering column tube.042.thumb.jpg.161d56dd05e65e80a5b28ba90503ca7f.jpg

I now realise what somebody had done in the past. The brass offset tube that should be 'gently' rotated to adjust the pinion gear shaft and then clamped, had been hammered down to try and adjusted the slack in the steering. The 'slack' problem was not with the rack but the worn bolt and 'eye' that connects the rack to the drag link and the bolt and eye that I have already replaced with a bush at the other end of the drag link. That's why there were some miss placed hammer marks on the steering pinion shaft that I have removed in the lathe. What they had done was force the pinion gear forward so it was 'pushing' into the steering rack bottom plate and wearing this plate. After much contemplation whether or not to make a new plate, machine the scored part out, or think of some method of repairing the score marks I decided that as the pinion does not need to touch the bottom plate I would leave the plate as is.

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This is the rack housing and you can see the rack and the bush I was talking about previously just above the rack in the photo.

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Starting to put the rack back together. Amongst my old tools I managed to find a spanner that fitted the slots in the adjustment bush.047.thumb.jpg.0ac6611127744619527a123b82497eca.jpg

Adjusting the pinion shaft to rack clearance with the 'special' spanner. When there is no slack and the rack moves easily, you tighten up the pinch bolt.049.thumb.jpg.616200f93a43cd243409a58e89db1090.jpg

Clamped up and the indent plate for the advance and retard mechanism fitted to the bottom of the rack.

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All for now. I'll go out to the garage and do a bit more bodywork.

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Yes Roger, I was surprised to find the Humberette had a steering rack. I did not think that steering racks came in until much later. It just goes to show us Brit's where ahead of our time!!! Well, until the 60's and 70's when it all went 'pear shaped' with our car and motorcycle industries.

 

I have just received the photos from Soda Blast who cleaned up the body for me. I was very pleased with the results. http://www.sodablastingltd.co.uk/

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In their blasting booth ready to blast.

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All the inside wood and ash framing masked up.

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Now the blasted body is ready for it's first coat of 2-pack etch primer and then 2-pack grey primer. I am very pleased with the results. This is the second body that they have blasted for me and I have been extremely pleased with their work. If you look at their website you can see a number of project they have worked on including cars for the Car SOS television programme.

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Bring the Humberette home in our Ford Transit van. Would you believe you could get 4-wheels, 4-wings, the bonnet and the body of a car into the back of a Transit! The blue patch on the scuttle is the area I masked up to leave so that the paint could be matched up to the original.

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The wheels are going to need some careful filling to remove the rust pits. At least with the blasting and etch primer should protect them for some time to come.

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The body back on it's stand ready for the hard work of filling the moulding screw holes and the laborious rubbing down. I have ordered the 2-pack epoxy primer for the wooden parts. Does anybody know if it is OK for the epoxy primer to go over the normal 2-pack primer on the metal parts or should I mask up the metal parts that are primed and just spray the epoxy primer on the wooden parts? I have moved another dehumidifier into this workshop to help with the removal of moisture. I have also left the heater on at 18 degrees to try and keep the temperature constant in the workshop.

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This is a photo of  a close up of the area that I 'T-cut' to find the original colour under the darker blue paint. It seems to be a bright Royal Blue. It is actually a brighter and deeper colour than it looks in the photo.

BACK TO THE STEERING

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Where the end of the steering rack bolts to the drag link the bolt and the hole had worn and there was slack that a previous owner had tried to eliminate by the wrong adjustments on the rack itself. I cleaned up the hole in the rack end with a 0.2mm oversize drill and made an oversize bolt in my trusty Myford lathe. I then lapped the two parts together with some metal polish to obtain a nice smooth fit.

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The steering wheel was cleaned up with plastic cleaner to remove the dirt. I was surprised to find that the steering wheel was made by Bluemel. I have always associated Bluemel steering wheels with 1930's sports cars.

 

 

 

 

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With a note coming up that I had uploaded the maximum number of photos I now know roughly how many I can post at one time. I seem to still be learning!

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As there were a few 'scuff' marks on the steering wheel I tried using this black trim wax on the steering wheel rim. I have used this product on many different black items in the past and found it works well. I left it on overnight before polishing it off. The cast aluminium spokes I had cleaned up with some very fine rubbing down paper and then metal polish.

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I was happy with the result as it does not look 'too new'.

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The tyre on the Stepney spare wheel has got cracks in the side walls, but they are nothing like the bad cracks on the other Dunlop Cord tyres, which I have replaces with new 26 x 3 beaded edged Ensign tyres. I managed to buy these from Vintage Tyres in the UK. I was lucky when I ordered them as they have been NLA in the UK for sometime. When I contacted Vintage Tyres they said that the container would be arriving in a couple of days, which it did. With this old spare tyre I just gave it a good clean with rubber dressing. When it is back on the rim and pumped up to pressure, if the cracks still show, I may use Burt Munro's trick, in the 'Worlds' Fastest Indian film' of filling the cracks with black boot polish!

 

 

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When I asked SPI about epoxy over paint they recommended 80 grit DA scratches in the paint before applying the epoxy.  They said this would help the epoxy get a bite.   I would imagine the epoxy primer you have is similar.   80 grit seems excessive so I might just mask the primer you have now and just shoot the wood. 

 

The work so far looks fantastic!! 

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Thank you for that information about the epoxy primer. I agree, with you I think it would be better to mask up the 2-pack primer that Soda Blast sprayed on rather than have to 'rough it up' with 80 grit. I'll just spray the wood parts with the epoxy.

 

Thanks for your kind words. I am enjoying reading your reports on the MGTD restoration. Your not too far off finishing the car now.

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I am starting to confuse myself with photos I have posted and ones that I have not. I have tried to put photos together of the same job and this is the problem. In the future I think I will post the photos with the text in the order I have taken them. The reason for taking photos of different jobs is that while I am waiting for filler to harden I may get on with another job. With the cleaning parts in the blast cabinet my Hydrovane compressor is only just man enough to run the media blasting torch for about 10 minutes before the pressure drops to the point that it takes double the time to remove the paint and rust. Therefore, while I wait for the pressure to build up I do a bit of rubbing down of the body filler. At least it keeps me moving about and not getting bored with doing just one job!

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Pleased to find how easy wood is to rub down when compared to paint! The two holes on the side were for oil lamp brackets that are not with the car anymore.

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 I found the original holes for the rear acetylene gas lamp. Perhaps the car originally had oil lamps and then early in it's life before 1926 when it was taken off the road it was fitted with 'modern' gas lamps? We shall never know.

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I will need to get Robert to help me make a new tongue and grooved floorboard for the boot. I have half the missing panel, it has the groove in just one end, at the front, this is so that the panel with the body number on in the photo can be lifted out to top up the diff with oil. There is a metal catch to stop the panel with the number on from jumping out.

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It always amazes me how many tools you need to do a single operation like sanding the wood. I try normally to work tidily and always clear up my 'mess' when I have finished working, or if I am completely knackered, clear up before I start working the next day.

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Started filling the screw holes in the beading that is around the panel edges and moulding that is covering the pins that hold the metal to the ash framing.

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This shows the panel that is missing and the new plywood panel I made up to screw to the area behind the seat back where the original wood panels had cracked.

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This vertical bit of ash appears to be the only part of the ash frame that has succumbed to bad woodworm. Another job for Robert!

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This photo shows the problem better. The coach trimmer will need this area to be sound as he will need to fix the leather and upholstery to here.

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The right hand brass upright support for the windscreen and the acetylene headlamps.  I have taken it out of the blast cabinet to see how it's coming on.

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I found it interesting that the brass casting is backed with an 1/8" thick strip of steel which is soldered to the brass. I wonder if on the earlier Humberette's the brass casting was prone to snapping and they then decided to brace the casting with steel?

Edited by Mike Macartney
I put the wrong photo in! And forgot to take the wrong one out! (see edit history)
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I wasn't expecting Soda Blast Limited to prime the metal parts. I just asked then to etch prime the bare metal so that it would not go rusty between them finishing the blasting and me collecting the body etc. It was a nice surprise to find it in 2-pack primer. I suppose as they had masked all the wood up it was an ideal time to also give the metal panels a coat of primer. The spray job was better than if I had sprayed it!

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There are an awful lot of screw holes to fill!

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Now, with filling the rust pits in the wheels I thought I would be clever and make a scraper the shape of the edge of the wheel rim to enable me to put as little filler on as possible so that I did not need to rub off lots of hard filler. I used this tool to give me an idea of the shape of the edge of the wheel rim.

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I then transferred this shape onto a piece of card and modified the shape as required with a pair of scissors.

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When I was happy with the shape I transferred the cut out to the edge of a stainless steel filler scraper.

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I had already done this modification to another scraper for the mouldings on the body and it had worked really well. I will now keep you in suspense as to whether or not my 'special' scraper worked!

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To rub down the filler on the mouldings I folded some 120 grit paper into a 1" wide strip and holding between two fingers ran the rubbing down paper along the moulding to remove the excess filler without flattening the curve of the moulding. It worked really well. I then coated the filler and parts of the alloy moulding, that had gone down to bare metal, with etching primer.

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The moulding on this side was a different shape to the other mouldings and I decided to fill the holes using a spatula rather than making another shaped spreader. I wish I had made one because the filler on these was very difficult to rub down and the holes did not fill properly and I will have to put another coat of filler on them.

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The modified scraper looked as if it would work well. By the time I managed to get round a quarter of one side of the wheel rim using a small spatula to put on the filler and the modified scraper to get the excess filler off, the filler I had mixed had gone hard! In the end I used my fingers to smooth the filler over the pits in the rim.

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At this stage with four more wheels to repair I would have been better off buying new rims and new spoked, if new rims had been available! I am finding it hard work rubbing down the filler on the wheels and trying to avoid getting any filler on the spokes or spoke nipples. You always come across these depressing problems with restoration work. Tomorrows another day and hopefully I may get on better than today!

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At least filling in these holes in this moulding was a lot easier.

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Where I have put a thin skim of filler in the left hand bottom corner of this panel there was a dent coming outwards? Strange, then I realised that the previous owner had fitted a small battery behind this panel, for the electronic ignition he had fitted and had drilled through the ash framing to put the earth lead through. He must have pushed the drill too hard and the drill point had dented the panel!

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Nearly finished filling all the mouldings. Problem I have just seen looking at this photo. The screws on the left hand side moulding in this photo go into the bit of ash framing that I need to replace - Oooop's! That's going to be fun trying to get the filler out of some of the screw heads! One reason I like doing these reports is it gives you a chance to look back at the work you have done and foresee problems. In this case, too late!

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This photo shows just how bad the pitting is to some parts of the wheel rims. The reason I decided to use filler was that if I had used high build primer it may have given me too much of a build up of primer on the spokes and nipples which would have been even more difficult to rub down.

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I have just found a photo of the filler spreader that I made up for the mouldings. The cut out section of the spreader was removed carefully with a cutting disc in an angle grinder.

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The better side of one of the rear wheels rubbed down. Only another 9 sides to go including the 'Stepney' wheel!100.thumb.jpg.b0773084083e13bbebd95a71b6f51a08.jpg

Had another go with the shaped spreader and it worked better if I rubbed the filler in with my fingers and then scraped the excess off.

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I thought I had filled all the screw holes in the mouldings and then found these at the back.

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Bored with filling and rubbing down I etched primed the brass support for the windscreen and checked it still fitted. I'll leave it in this position for the time being until the new fixing screws arrive.103.thumb.jpg.54f56bfefc7b9059cc2c3f2a1e0df425.jpg

This is the right hand one before 'blasting'. Hexagonal bolt heads just doesn't seem right with fixing these to to side of the body. I am going to use dome head countersunk slot set screws instead of the bolts. I think they will look better.106.thumb.jpg.eb8d823a3faac9d0c5ad814ef8e9249d.jpg

A view of blasting the windscreen support (I think you call them windshields instead of UK word windscreen).

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This second hand Hydrovane compressor, Guyson blast cabinet and filter system is probably the most useful bit of kit I have ever bought. All for now - back soon.

 

 

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It's back to wheels again. You and I are all going to get up with the sight of spoked wheels soon!

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Two of the wheels are starting to get somewhere near to what I was after. I have been using 120 grit production paper to rub down the filler and the 2-pack primer. I would really like to finish two wheels to give my some idea what they are going to look like when finished. In addition, if two of the wheels look good, when compared to the two wheels I haven't touched yet, it may give me more enthusiasm for completing the refurbishment of the wheels!

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Just when you think you have finished rubbing down you find more bits to fill and rub down. I am using fine body filler as the pits and scrapes are not deep, but I feel they are too deep to use high build primer as yet.

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Buy way of a change I etched primed the other brass windshield support bar.

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Having worn out the ends of my fingers from rubbing down the wheels, I though I would have a look at the front wings, (I think you call them fenders?) and see what needed to be done to these. I managed to find proper wing bolts on eBay rather than normal coach bolts that the previous owner had used. The original type wing bolts have 1" diameter heads as can be seen in the photo above. I do not have a clue as to why there are so many holes in the wing near the front mounting? Perhaps the guy had a new drill and wanted to try it out?! More work for me to do, cutting out the excess holes and welding in new metal.  I think I will also weld in a strengthening section under where the wing sits on the front wing mounting bracket. The rear edge of the wing where it bolts to the running board also needs some attention.

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This is the front wing on the left hand side. I am very glad now that I had the paint and filler removed by Soda Blast, as I would not have realised that this area had been so badly repaired. This will need a new section panel beaten, the bad section cut out and the new metal welded in. Hopefully I can make a better repair than this.

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Still suffering from sore fingers I tried the fit of the 'ratchet' for holding the outside handbrake on and the mounting for the 'Stepney Wheel'. I'll machine up new mounting tubes that are distance pieces between the body and the bracket and give them a bit of shape, rather than a straight bit of tube that they are now. The bracket also needs a bit of finishing off.

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I took this photo because I wanted to see if the bracket for the spare wheel needed any mods. Because the previous owner did not use any heat when he bent the flat bar the bends need to be tidied up. A bit of heat and a hammer should do the trick. The handbrake ratchet can be easily seen in this photo.

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OK, time for a bit more filler and a bit more rubbing down!

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Here you can see clearly what I'm up against!

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I am afraid these hubs are going to stay as is. I can't get my big hands in there to fill the pits or rub the filler down. Anybody got a small child that doesn't get bored easily!

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On to something different. This is a tool I bought for removing the upholstery tacks that are still in the woodwork. I thought I would try and remove as many as I could to make life a bit easier for the coach trimmer. I managed to remove the easy ones that still had there heads on, but I think when the original leather upholstery was pulled off it pulled the heads of the upholstery tacks that had gone rusty around the leather.

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I modified an old pair of side cutters so that I could 'dig in a bit' to the wood to get hold of the tack to pull it out - that worked on some, bit but in most cases just cut the top off the tack making it even more difficult to pull out the remaining bit of tack.

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Here is a close up. Any tack removal suggestions would be appreciated.

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There are plenty of these tacks especially along the back.

 

 

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Wow, you got a lot accomplished!  I don't know what to do with those tacks, that looks like a real pain.  I guess you'll have to remove some wood to get a grip on them and then fill that back in. 

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Jeff, I think I will send a photo of the tacks to the coach trimmer and ask him if he needs them removed. He may say he can work round them. I am worried that if I have to use a chisel to get to them I may do more damage than good and split the wood. I turned myself a small tubular cutter to put over the tack and hit it with a hammer to move the wood away from the tack so that I could get the modified side cutters in to grip the tack, but that didn't seem to work either. Thanks for your thoughts. Wood really isn't my thing, I only did metalwork at school so never learned the basics of wood.

 

Here's some more stuff to add to my reports. Then at least the reports will have caught up with my progress.

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Brackets for the spare wheel mounting ring cleaned up well in the blast cabinet. There was a lot of rust under the paint.

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The ring took a lot of rust removal. It was just to large to fit in the blast cabinet.

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Right, I have had enough of rubbing down for today. I'll try painting this wheel with primer. The temporary bolt through the centre  fitted neatly into a hole in the Workmate so that I could rotate the wheel to get to most of the rim. I am only going to paint the rim.

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Decided I would prime the other rim as well.

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Oh dear I think they are going to need some more filling.

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I sprayed a guide coat of black so that when I rub the primer down the low parts will be highlighted in black and I will see easier the area that need more filler. That's a job for tomorrow.

I'll leave you with a young lady of the Edwardian era starting her Humberette.

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Edited by Mike Macartney
Did not mean to put the last photo in. (see edit history)
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I'll be in the UK in February - can I take a peek at your Humberette? I'm visiting friends in Cheltenham.

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