oppositelocksmith
oppositelocksmith New Reader
9/4/21 5:14 p.m.

I vote ejector seat. Lighting is overrated! Lol

I’ve got LED strips behind each bottom dash crash pad, triggered by the door switches. 

TurnerX19
TurnerX19 UltraDork
9/5/21 12:45 p.m.

In reply to JoeTR6 :

This describes every reproduction Lucas part I have purchased (from any vendor) in the last decade.

AxeHealey
AxeHealey Dork
9/5/21 8:02 p.m.

The quality of new parts available for the Healey is the same way. Pain in the butt.

 

JoeTR6
JoeTR6 Dork
9/6/21 11:54 a.m.

I'm afraid you guys are right.  The quality of some reproduction parts (particularly the Lucas ones) is pretty horrendous.  I'm having a set of old headlight trim rings rechromed just because the new "Lucas" ones barely fit after a bunch of grinding.

This makes me wonder if I should plan now on replacing the Lucas upper ball joints used on this car.  Lemforder makes a ball joint for the XJ6 that will fit a TR6 with some shims, and the shims allow some caster gain.  They are currently backordered at FCP Euro, but I'll keep looking.

TurnerX19
TurnerX19 UltraDork
9/6/21 12:21 p.m.

In reply to JoeTR6 :

"Lucas" chassis parts are TRW these days. TRW owns the name rights. None of the reproduction Lucas electrical pieces are made by any company with ties to the original Joseph Lucas. All are Chinese or Indian, some possibly using the old, worn out Lucas machinery.

JoeTR6
JoeTR6 Dork
9/6/21 12:43 p.m.

It's funny how Internet research sometimes goes.  Looking into which XJ6 ball joint people use on a TR6, there doesn't appear to be any choice.  The XJ6 used the same ones from 1969 to 1997.  Then I read on some British car forum that these did not fit the owner's TR6 (contrary to JK Jackson), with someone else claiming that they were actually from an XK140.  Then I found that Moss sells the same ball joint for XK120-150, early sedans, XJ6, XJ12, and XJS.  So who to trust?

Well, JK Jackson wrote in GRM some time ago that he used XJ6 ball joints.  Then Tim Suddard used them on his TR3 race car with TR6 upper arms.  And the kicker, we ran them on the autocross TR6 in Virginia for 20+ years.  So that's who I believe.

TurnerX19
TurnerX19 UltraDork
9/6/21 10:50 p.m.

In reply to JoeTR6 :

They fit a whole bunch of Maseratis too. Jag bought them originally from Alford & Alders, who also supplied Triumph with smaller, lighter weight parts. A&A made 3 sizes of suspension, and they would sell them to anyone. 

oppositelocksmith
oppositelocksmith New Reader
9/7/21 10:40 a.m.

Joe, are you shooting for more caster with the Jag part?

JoeTR6
JoeTR6 Dork
9/7/21 2:17 p.m.

Maybe, although I haven't measured the caster yet.  I'm making some toe plates and have a camber gauge, so will check that soon.  It certainly doesn't have too much caster now, but returns to center well enough.

JoeTR6
JoeTR6 Dork
9/10/21 9:37 p.m.

The Jag ball joints arrived and they will be put into reserve.  The quality appears to be much better than the Lucas/TRW parts.  I'm also still working on the toe plates but just need to drill some holes and do a little carpentry.

Progress on the soft top has been slow.  I managed to glue the Velcro strips onto the top frame that holds the top down above the windows.  This allowed the window top seals to be fitted.

Next up is laying out the top and fitting the rear metal piece and top webbing.  On the other TR6 I sold, the rivets got rusty around the back of the top since they are exposed.  This time I want to use stainless rivets.  Hopefully I can find them locally tomorrow.

JoeTR6
JoeTR6 Dork
9/12/21 10:16 p.m.

Sometime last week the Megasquirt ITB tuning was reworked.  There's one table that defines the TPS threshold between MAP-based load and TPS-based load.  That was fine, but another table sets the engine load at the transition.  For some reason, I had this table defined so that there was less room for TPS-based load at lower RPMs.  It's recommended to just set the load threshold at 50% for any RPM, so that got fixed and the fuel map re-tuned.  I also found that the tune would fuel cut on overrun at 5% throttle, and this made small throttle openings somewhat jerky.  That was lowered to 1%.

Today we took the TR6 up to Castle Rock for about a 50 mile loop.  It ran great.  The AFR stayed much closer to stoichiometric.  My fuel mileage before with a good bit of rich running was near 21 MPG in mixed driving.  I'd guess now it's closer to 25 MPG.  That's pretty good for a TR6.  After getting back, the trip odometer read 652 miles (total distance since restoration), so I changed the engine oil.  We also drove through a light rain on the way back, so the soft top *is* going on this week.

TVR Scott
TVR Scott SuperDork
9/14/21 10:02 a.m.

Joe, what did you do for a water temp sensor?  Weren't you telling me the factory gauge is basically an idiot-light?  Did you put in something more analog?

Or were we discussing oil pressure?  Some days I feel so confused...

JoeTR6
JoeTR6 Dork
9/14/21 11:37 a.m.

The stock coolant temp and oil pressure gauges are both analog.  For a TR6, there is an oil pressure switch threaded into the main oil gallery used to determine whether the engine is running.  But the oil pressure is indicated via a capillary tube.

For the dash gauge, I originally used a brand new coolant sensor in the factory location, but it was wildly inaccurate.  Apparently the calibration of the new ones is different than the original, so I switched to an original one.  I also have a GM sensor to supply the Megasquirt with a more accurate signal.  I was considering using a variable resistor to alter this signal to something that could drive the stock gauge, but it's not linear and I didn't mind having two sensors.  I also replaced the oil pressure switch with an AEM pressure transducer to send an analog signal to the Megasquirt for oil pressure.  I'd really like to use that to drive an electronic dash gauge.

JoeTR6
JoeTR6 Dork
9/15/21 6:27 p.m.

The toe plates are done.

There's a slot on the end that a tape measure passes through.  This indicates the front is 59 5/8" and the rear is 59 3/8".  I find it hard to believe that it's 1/8" toed out, but it does turn in very well and wanders a little on the Interstate.  Unfortunately, one of the tie rod ends is bottomed out, so I'll need to either move the steering rack or jump to the next spline on the steering shaft (which may be too much).

JoeTR6
JoeTR6 Dork
9/17/21 8:26 p.m.

 The soft top didn't get installed because I decided to use black snaps around the back and had to wait on the order.  Normally these would be on top of the reflective stripe so nickel looks better, but I went with the solid black top.

So instead, the door panels were installed.  These are always a huge pain.  You insert 14 clips into holes in the panel while lifting them over the edge of the vinyl.  Then you need to line them up with small holes in the door, but they never seem to all line up.  This time, the top row was 1/4" too low, and there was no way to reposition the panel.  Drilling some new holes eventually got both panels on.

Fitting the handles is a hateful job as well.  There's a spring behind a plastic disk that retains a pin holding the handle to a square peg sticking out from the door.  You need to compress the spring while holding down the disk and pressing in the pin.  Here's the mess.

I hold the handle on with a piece of wire and push the pin in with needle nose vice grips.  On the last handle, there wasn't enough room for the vice grips, so it was a harder fight.

oppositelocksmith
oppositelocksmith New Reader
9/18/21 10:10 p.m.

Definitely one of the crappier tasks on a TR. Yours looks gorgeous though!

JoeTR6
JoeTR6 Dork
9/20/21 5:52 p.m.

I'm pushing ahead to the finish line.  The top install started yesterday.  Step one was to install the steel reinforcement strip along the back edge.  This is a new repro part that is in much better shape than the bent/rusty original relics in my parts stash.  Good thing I noticed the holes for the rivets were 1/8" off on one side.  This didn't involve too much drama.

Next up was installing the top webbing.  Getting this right is important.  Too loose and it sags, too tight and you struggle to get the top closed.  The position of two top bows must also be set.  Again, limited drama.

And then it was time to pull the top forward for a test fit.  The back was very loose at first.  I kept pulling forward until it was at least acceptable.  The back window still seems a little loose to me, but it's a bear to latch the top.  I'm going to let it stretch overnight and see where it ends up.  The front edge is temporarily held in place with some paper clamps.  The back two side snaps were also installed, but I'm not quite happy with those.  Hopefully they can be adjusted slightly to reduce the wrinkling around them.

JoeTR6
JoeTR6 Dork
9/21/21 11:11 p.m.

Today I almost finished the top install.  The top just needs to be attached to the frame bows.  It looked good this morning and could be latched with some minor effort, so glue was sprayed on the frame header and front edge of the top.  I made liberal use of tape and a marker to make sure the top was going back into the same place.  It still took some adjustment to get it right, but the fit looks good.  There are some rails that are riveted to the header which help the glue keep the top attached.  Those also hold a weather seal in an attempt to keep water out.  It mostly works, but is also a royal pain to install.

I rounded off an old screwdriver and lubed the seal, but it still fought me 1/8" at a time.  Here I'm just past the latch.  This took two hours to finish, but it's done.

JoeTR6
JoeTR6 Dork
9/23/21 3:23 p.m.

Here it is with the completed soft top.  I'm happy with how it turned out except for where it snaps to the body below the rear quarter windows.  Maybe that's just the way cloth tops roll.

I have the bumpers laid out basting in WD40.  The plan is to see whether they even fit the car, and either send them off for chroming or order a new set of stainless ones depending.

Stu Lasswell
Stu Lasswell Reader
9/23/21 4:00 p.m.

In reply to JoeTR6 :

It's looking awesome!

oppositelocksmith
oppositelocksmith New Reader
9/23/21 10:16 p.m.

New top looks great! Nicely done.

I just got in from a back road cruise in mine with the youngest co-pilot. Temps are finally low enough to necessitate the top being up.

AxeHealey
AxeHealey Dork
9/24/21 7:54 a.m.

Really great job on the top. 

JoeTR6
JoeTR6 Dork
9/24/21 7:27 p.m.

So, does anybody know of a good chrome shop?  The last one I used was Paul's Chrome in PA about 25 years ago.

The front took a good bit of hammering and clamping to mostly straighten out. It suffered a small hit on the nose that bent the top surface up slightly.  The rear is very straight and just has a few small dents.  One of the rear captive mounting nuts has been brazed into place, but the repair looks good and is in the right location.

oppositelocksmith
oppositelocksmith New Reader
9/25/21 10:44 a.m.

Joe, the go-to for a lot of guys on this side of the country is a shop in Bristol TN. I’ve not used them and cannot remember the name, but all the work I’ve seen from them is good.

 

Edit, here is the company.

 

https://www.tricityplating.com/

 

chandler
chandler UltimaDork
9/25/21 10:47 a.m.

J&P Plating did great work for me a few years ago. They are in Portage, Indiana 

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