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Following the journey of my 76

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Short update - gauge testing

Home for about a week before another month long underway.    Still workjng on the heater core update (need to figure out why my defrost flaps are hard to open/close). So I bought a 5/8 brace barbed splice and bypassed the heater core so I could finally get around to starting the car up to test the gauges.    After some quick programming of the tach (and verifying measurements against my 123app) everything was looking good. Oil pressure was high to start but decreased over time as the engine got warm. Every time I pressed the throttle pressure went up and down accordingly. Water temp rose nicely as well. Still need to program the gas gauge but that can wait.    Somehow i lost my blinkers, so more troubleshooting is needed, but it was good to hear the engine fire up again.      023F5F03-F3FA-4A09-833A-B3D6816D171F.MOV
 

Progress before the break

Since I’ll be out to sea for more or less the next 10 weeks, I took the opportunity this weekend to knock out a bunch of projects on the interior:   cleaned up the wiring under the dash ran the new sensors sensors for the gauges  more or less got the gauge wiring done wired up the power and windows to the new switch panel cleaned up under the back bench cleaned up and required a bit of the aux fuse panel  trimmed the trunk boards so they fit flush fit the new rear light lenses to replace the cracked ones  took out the passenger seat and replaced all of the bolts to the frame and bolts to the car finished up the heater box rebuild (see previous post) reconnected the amp and verified wires in place    when I get back I still need to do a bunch: source a constant hot for part of the gauges repair and recover the dash run wires for AFR figure our why I no longer have switched power from the aux fuse box rewire the left turn signal- worked briefly but no longer shows on the speedo gauge  rebuild the heater valve and refit the heater box refit the speaker pods and install speakers install rear speakers in shelf source and install third brake light  finish center console fire our wiring for brake warning idiot light    at some point I’ll recover and refit the interior panels, get some seat covers for the recaros, and install the new rear seats   

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Full heater box rebuild

Wrapped up a full heater box rebuild to include making new bowden cables.    Core was pressure tested and came back great. Replaced all the seals, installed a new plastic fan, fixed all the broken plastic, added a new valve bracket, re-riveted all the holes.    Got to the end and had the square bit of the valve break off when I went to attach the new valve arm.    Son. Of. A. B...

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Much ado about much to do

Finally sketched out the work plan to get the car done. Seats and door cards are on hold as they're not necessary to get the car moving again. With the console, gauges, and dash torn out, there is plenty to keep me busy. Gray is complete. Everything else is color coded by like/linked things.    DASH remove repair AFR mount recover reinstall             CONSOLE base sides faceplate cover install             FACEPLATE design cut fit cover install             SWITCHPLATE design order wire install               CONSOLE WIRING design wire install                 GAUGES remove replace wire gas wiring oil wiring water wiring AFR wiring speedo wiring tach wiring console wiring install AUX FUSE BLOCK rewire                     TRUNK OPENER paint install wire light wire opener               BOWDEN CABLES remove fabricate install                 HEATER BOX remove clean repair paint seals reinstall           HEATER FAN remove clean fan blade reinstall               STEREO speaker pods mount speakers wire amp wire speakers install             UNDERDASH WIRING clean sort                  

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Adventures in Gauge Clusters

Finally got around to pulling out the cluster and replacing everything with a set of SpeedHut gauges. Plan is to also install a AFR pod to the left of the cluster in the cubby spot on the dash and run a set of wires down to the analog clock/switch panel for lighting control.    Still need to work on wiring up everything, but that’ll involve buying a molex connector which I don’t have.    Good news is all of this only took one blood sacrifice. 

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Center console part 3

Took some more measurements and mocked everything up in cardboard this time.   The switch panel came in so it gave me an opportunity to verify everything is going to fit. A couple of leds on the panel didn’t want to cooperate so the company is going to send me a replacement.   If I get time this weekend I will probably try my first attempt at making the face plate out of the fiberboard I got.    Still need to buy the head unit I want, plus wire everything up. 

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Center console, part 2

Decided to make some new side panels as the original ones had fallen apart completely. All in all not a bad project- I even got to play with nearly all my tools: jigsaw, orbital sander, drill press, rotozip, router. 

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Views from below

Picking up the car today - touch up work from the Restoration is complete, new strut mounts are in, steering box has new seals, doors have been worked to take the IE aluminum panels. More importantly the custom exhaust is installed. 

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Thoughts on a center console

Beginning to sketch out some ideas for the center console project.    I want a double DIN radio. At least I think I do. I’ve also got the E36 clock/cubby and have finally sourced an illuminated switch panel I can use with toggle switches.    Fitment will be tight, but I think it’ll work.  

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Trunk Opener/Light Kit

Finally got around to installing Cal’s trunk opener and light kit.    First things first - Cal, you have made a hell of a kit. From the packaging to the instructions, this thing is top quality.    Installing is incredibly straight forward. Definitely take the time to clean your old latch system. I spent a few days soaking it in degreaser, carb cleaner, and then wire brushing it. A bit of lithium grease at the back end should keep it in great working order.    Ininstalled a switch on the the positive side of the light so I can turn it off when I don’t need it, though I’ve verified that the plunger interrupts the circuit nicely.    Plan is to tap the light into my aux fuse panel in the back seat and when I finally get around to redoing my center control I’ll put in a switch to pop the trunk.     

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Edit- Delivery Day (approaches)

Figured I’d update this post since I haven’t picked up the car yet. Turns out there were some weather delays that kept a few of the final bits from arriving on time. That combined with a wiring issue and Christmas vacation led to delivery being pushed to mid January.    Either way, it gave me a chance to finally order the 123 Distributor with Bluetooth which I just dropped off to the shop yesterday. Should be put in today before the snow arrives and pick up should be early next week.    Did get a chance to check out a sweet 3.0 that was in he shop. Definitely a bonus.    ——————   Pending any major delays for weather - today is delivery day!   I can't even begin to describe how excited I am - plan is to get a good, long test drive in with the shop owner, take it home overnight, and bring it to a command training day tomorrow. Next week I'll start working on my interior projects.

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3rd Annual Coastal Virginia Autoshow

Out of town this weekend for a football game but the shop had a display set up for the autoshow- Kyle asked if he could take my car and since I wouldn’t be using it I had no objections.    Car is just about complete - all that remains is to put on the new rear bumper and resolve an odd ground with one of my turn signals 

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Teaser shots

On my local 02 FB page I saw some shots of the car at the last cars and coffee. Still some work to do but it is all coming together.    

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Photo Dump of Progress

After finally coming home from an impromptu 3 month underway, I actually have a chance to upload photos that have been on my phone. While grateful for my wife snagging some progress shots, I had all of the early progress stuck on my phone with me while out at sea. Enjoy.  

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Minor Updates

Since I'm still out to sea with no return in sight - there has been no pressure to get the car done. I guess this is a good thing as the shop has time to ensure everything is done to perfection. Car is back from the upholstery shop and I'm digging the new black headliner. Can't wait to be home and see everything in person.

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Air & Auto Classic 8

I was really hoping the car would make its debut at the PCA Air and Auto Classic 8 show today in Virginia Beach. Some last minute rain delayed finishing work and my restoration guy (who was taking the car on my behalf) decided to opt out. I can't fault him for that.   Since I'd paid for the registration, my wife went to the show and enjoyed the sites. She was kind enough to send these to me - looks like quite a few 2002s made it out, which is always a good sign.

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Off for a Headliner

Car is on its way to a local shop to get the new headliner put in. Once it comes back the remaining trim and glass will go in, followed by a full polish of the paint and detail of the interior.  

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Assembly Update

My wife was kind enough to stop by the shop and send me some more pictures. New headlights are in and the blacked out trim pieces are starting to go back on.

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Reassembly Begins

It is satisfying to see everything come together, even if I'm not there to see it in person. Shouldn't be long before it is back on the road.   Of note, those are the original headlights that are back in the car for fitment - I'm replacing them with LED switchback lights. Headliner should be replaced late this week or early next week as well.

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Paint Progress

I may be out to sea, but my wife was kind enough to stop by the shop and send some progress photos. Things are coming along nicely. Still a lot of color sanding to do.    

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Peeking at paint

Pulled the sunroof panel out into the sun to check it out and I couldn't be happier with the paint choice. There are still many color/wet sandings to go and a few buff sessions, but the picture can't show how awesome it looks.

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Taking Flight

With the engine out of the car and the panels off and prepped for paint - what remained went up on the lift to take care of the previously noted body issues.     The engine got partially disassembled for ceramic coating and paint   And all of the panels started getting some color     Things were coming along nicely

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