30 Jun 2008

Kimini is in storage, freeing up garage workspace (I almost thought Kimini was going to sell last Saturday, but oh well.) After a very long (and of course, hot) day the table is mostly done, leaving only the top surface left to to install. It shouldn’t have surprised me how heavy the table is; it’s a beast, enough that I had to get two neighbors to simply turn it over. As construction progresses we’ll see how smart it was going to the effort and expense of a 5′ x 10′ table as opposed to a 4 x 8 that would have been easier, cheaper, and lighter. Oh well, I won’t be whining about not having enough table space.

What’s with the hole in the center? Since it’s a 5 x 10ft table made from 4 x 8ft sheets, some puzzle-solving resulted in using three full sheets with no leftovers. It did result in being four square feet short though, so the hole has been labeled an “access port” if I have to get up under the chassis.

The big pile of boxes behind it are parts: engine, tranny, seats, pedal cluster, fenders and nose which will go on the table and everything else going underneath. Got to free up floor space so I can move around.

Once the parts are in place it’s a matter of getting everything where they’re supposed to go and see how it all fits. As was done with Kimini, I’m going to resist (very difficult) going straight to steel and will instead build a wood mockup. It saved so many goofs and much heartache that it more than makes up for its time and cost. I can see the design in my head; it’s now a matter of fine-tuning the details, especially since plans will be based on it. Much like Kimini, it has to be right the first time.

28 Jun 2008

We’ll see how much work I get done on the table tomorrow. Over the last two and a half years, Kimini’s windshield has slowly slid downward about 1/8″. This isn’t a big surprise since glass gets hot in the sun and silicon sealant (and windshield adhesive) gets soft. Before putting her into storage I think it would be wise to add some non-metallic (so it doesn’t crack the glass) “feet” to the bottom of the lower windscreen clamps, giving the glass a little shelf to rest on. It’ll be done now because it may get warm enough in storage that the glass moves further, like a glacier slowly heading for the sea…

25 Jun 2008

Designing the chassis table. I thought 5′ x 10′ sheets of MDF existed but apparently not (I’m not sure where I got the idea.) I’ll have to make due, using 4′ x 8′ sheets to create a 5′ x 10′ work surface. A table that large will support the entire chassis, rather than having it hang over the edges – like a huge guy on a scooter.

Kimini’s storage space is all set so that’ll happen this weekend. On Sunday, work on the chassis table will begin and I’ll make sure to take lots of pictures – the first ones for the book! Things are starting to get exciting, once again.

In other news, in early October of last year I sent a book to a guy in Canada. Several weeks passed and it hadn’t arrived so I sent another free of charge. Got a note from him today that the first book arrived – seven and a half months late! Guess they aren’t kidding about Customs being backed up with Canadians buying lots of U.S. goods due to the low dollar.

15 Jun 2008

Work on the manuscript continues. This quiet time is perfect for building a strong foundation for the construction sections that are soon to follow.

I got a note from someone, frustrated in a good way that things aren’t moving along faster. That’ll happen at the end of the month where, after the big Mini Meet West event, Kimini will be put into storage. It’s near by and convenient so I can still drive it at least once a month to keep it in running order.

Anyhow, this frees up the garage and you’ll start seeing things happen. Not sure what will be first, the chassis table or the wood mockup. The mockup will happen either way, it’s just a question of whether I want it elevated or not.

5 Jun 2008

Ordered a “car pocket”, also known as a car jacket. It’s essentially a giant zip-lock bag that you drive your car into so that during storage, it keeps dust, water, bugs, and mice out of the car. Between that and a good car cover, Kimini’s going into storage until she sells.