What my car should look like when finished - Stoneleigh 2015

Wednesday, 30 December 2015

Poly Bushes Fitted

Since the wishbones have been painted also, I started to assemble the suspension.  The polyurethane bushes were pressed into each wishbone using a G clamp to help - they weren't too tight though....

The stainless bush inserts had to be trimmed to fit my chassis.  This was done on a small Sealey lathe which did the trick.  They bushes started off at 38mm long, but I required approx 34.5mm long to fit.

Some of the wishbone lugs on the chassis had to be opened up using some threaded rod and a couple of nuts.  The holes also had to be cleared out to 1/2" to accept the high tensile bolts.

Once the bushes had been turned down, I pressed them in using the vice to give a helping hand.

Again they weren't stiff to go in.

I then loosely bolted the wishbones in place - I will properly tighten once on the ground.

I bought some rubber boots for the rose joints to see if this will help prolong their life.  I covered the ends in grease, and pulled the boots on.  The only one I didn't put on was the inner rod end on the rear turnbuckle since the covers have bits that stick out and the wishbone didn't really have enough clearance to get the cover on.  The boots were bought from McGill Motorsport -

Monday, 21 December 2015

Chassis is Back from Painters

The Chassis and bare metal parts have been hot metal sprayed and coated with a 2 pack paint.  The chassis has been sprayed with a wheel silver, and the other parts are in gloss black.  The finish isn't smooth since the molten aluminium isn't quite like a paint or powder coat.  It does look good in the flesh though, and at least it won't rust!

Friday, 20 November 2015

Lights Fitted

I have finally gotten around to starting the build!

Since GD had already removed the flash lines and given the body a full compound and polish for me, I started by fitting the lights.

I double checked the dimensions of the headlight hole, and cut them out using my Proxxon tool with circle cutting attachment.  I then marked the holes for the adjustment screws and the mounting holes.  I have used A4 stainless pan head set screws to fit the headlight units and also the indicator lights.  I hope to use a lot of Stainless screws to prevent the dreaded rust.

I have also temporarily fitted the windscreen, but this needs a little more adjustment to get the centre bracket to fit.  I will have to get the wiper mechanism and demister escutcheons prior to final fitting and sealing.

I have also blocked up the bolt holes in the chassis using M8 & M6 bolts prior to the hot metal spraying.  I have been advised that this will be at least 2 weeks away due to the painters being on paternity leave!  All the best to them, and a couple of weeks won't make any difference to me.

Front Lights Fitted (P700 units used & clear indicators with orange lamps)

Rear lights fitted

Saturday, 31 October 2015


After a lot of pondering about which chassis to go for I eventually opted for the EURO chassis.  It is a bit more expensive that the JAG based, but I thought that I would prefer the newness.

I was originally going to go for a JAG based one - I even have an old XJS available (Which is now for sale)

I thought how I would prefer to build the car from scratch and the EURO option seemed only to be available as a rolling chassis which ruled it out, or so I thought.....

I discussed at length with Andy regarding rust prevention since living in Shetland can be quite harsh.  (You may ask why am I building an open topped car?)

I have researched hot dip galvanising, but this isn't a preferred option due to the potential for twisting the chassis, not to mention all the holes that require to be drilled into all the tubes to let zinc in and air out.

The powder coating process is quite good, however if it cracks at all then water finds its way in and the powder coating can peel off.

I then looked into hot metal spraying which coats the bare steel in hot molten metal.  It ends up similar to hot dip galvanising protection, but the insides can't be coated.  This will have to be coated with some cavity wax of some sort to prevent rust from forming on the inside.

I discussed with Andy and let him know my thoughts and he agreed that I could take a EURO chassis unassembled, apart from the wheel bearings pressed in by GD.  This way I can get the best rust protection I can.  GD don't provide this sort of coating yet and so that is the reason of the unassembled chassis.

I'm sure this will take a lot of phone calls to GD to assist since there is no build manual!

I plan to hot metal spray all the bare metal parts, but I will decide once I get them here.

This rolling chassis was on display at the GD stand at Stoneleigh 2015.  I hope mine looks like this someday...

This is what mine looks like today.....

Body & Chassis Arrived!

At last, the body and chassis, along with many other parts, have arrived!

They came off the ferry this morning and were delivered right to my door.

It is a horrible day today, so we got a bit wind swept and wet, but at least the car is now safe indoors.

A big thanks to Dave for driving it the 650 miles to get it here.

I have put the body and chassis in the garage for now, and the rest of the parts into my container on shelves.  I will go through it again and check to see if I have missed anything for the early stages of the build.

I can't wait to get stuck in!

Monday, 26 October 2015

Body Frame

A big thanks to Dale who I stole all the measurements from for my body frame.

I made it just as his blog which you can find here

I still have to glue on the non-slip rubber matting, but other than that it is finished.

I still have to have a final clear out of the garage and container ready for the body / chassis arriving on Saturday.

A friend of mine is coming up from the mainland with a truck and he has kindly offered to collect the car / parts.  It is quite a long journey:

414 miles to Aberdeen
12 hour ferry trip
11 mile trip to my house!

648 miles in total (According to Google Maps)

I have tried to buy a lot of parts in one go just to save on shipping costs.  As you can see it's a bit of a trek!

Sunday, 25 October 2015


Welcome to my attempt of a blog to detail my building of a Gardner Douglas 427 Mk IV.

I am new to blogging, but I'm sure by the end of the project I will be a complete "Whizzer" in it's use.

Please feel free to sign up so that you can receive an e-mail each and every time I update the blog.

Also, please leave any comments or ask any questions and I will try and respond.


Engine has Arrived!

I decided to go all out and install a Chevrolet LS7 (7.0l).  This was prepared for me by Kyle Rushall at Tim Adams Racing Engines.

It has been modified a bit though....

It has been converted to be a wet sump system and is fitted with the "Bat Wing" sump.  There are JE pistons and forged steel con-rods as opposed to the titanium ones.  The engine was originally built for somebody who wanted to use it for street racing then didn't want it any more.

There is a different profile cam installed and a CANEMS engine management system.

This was dyno tested at 620bhp and 588 ft lbs of torque!  I have been told it is very smooth, and I hope to speak with Dave at CANEMS to program in a few driving modes.

I will be coupling the engine to a 6-speed Tremec T-56 Magnum gearbox and a Macleod street twin clutch.

Engine on the Dyno machine at Tim Adams Racing Engines

Engine & Gearbox being delivered

Garage Renovation

With the decision to build a GD427, I thought I'd better have a big tidy-up in the garage and make it a lot more "fit for purpose".  I bought a 20' shipping container to move everything out of the garage to be able to overhaul it.  A lot of the bits and pieces won't be going back in.  I plan to use the garage as a work area only, and the container as the storage area.

The garage is relatively small, but it is essentially sound and just basically required a clear out, re-wire and a lick of paint.  I am waiting on a new sectional door to arrive then fitted, but this can be done once the car is here.

The proposed delivery date for the bodyshell and chassis is the 31st of October.

Installed a substantial beam to be able to remove a centre pillar

Old kitchen units installed, and walls and floor painted.