Once the trimming was more or less complete, it was time to start getting all the other bits bolted back on. The wiper system seemed to be in good condition and so I set about cleaning the motor and rack to get rid of old grease and then applying liberal quantities of new grease before bench testing them.
Everything seemed to be smooth and quiet so I re-assembled the motor, rack and wheel boxes back in position. However, it sounded a bit rough when testing it in situ so checked the mounting of the motor against early pictures. This showed that the motor had originally been mounted at a slight angle. I had mounted it horizontally since there were 2 holes to choose from and it seemed reasonable to use the horizontal pair However, when mounted at an angle, using the alternative hole as shown in the photo below, the difference was amazing – a nice quiet and smooth action again. Seems like a bit of trial and error in the TVR factory since the other hole doesn’t appear to do anything and was probably drilled in error!
Next up were the bonnet catches. I’d had the brackets powder coated but didn’t want to disassemble to slides to powder coat individual bits so painted those by hand. Using stainless nuts, bolts and washers it all went back together nicely.
Before the car was laid up, I had only just replaced the bonnet pull cable and handle so I was able to re-use this after a clean up. The outer cable needed replacing though and I sourced a suitable length from a bicycle shop together with a couple of new ferrules to fit on the ends once cut to length. A length of nylon tube was slipped over the outer cable to give it a bit more protection against the sharp edge of the bracket.
At this stage, the bonnet wasn’t ready to fit so I’ll have to wait to see how the they operate.
In the meantime it was time to start getting the rear lights back together. I had already sourced new side markers since the originals were completely rusted but the rear lamp clusters were not too bad. However, I’d forgotten that the nearside lamp had taken a ding when the rear end went on excursion and got acquainted with a stone wall sometime in the 80’s. Once stripped and cleaned it didn’t seem possible to repair this damage so I looked around for a replacement. Ebay didn’t come up with anything at the time but a little bird told me that @Adrian had some, so that was duly ordered and sent for powder coating with the offside cluster. That just left the reflectors where the original reflective coating had completely crumbled. The reflector surfaces were cleaned with white spirit which removed the remaining reflective coating and gave a nice clean surface for a new coating. I was toying with using silver or white gloss paint but in the end settled for using chrome tape. The secret to applying this was to cut it into small triangular strips so that each one could be smoothed around the internal 3D curves of the reflectors. This gave an effect a bit like those flash-bulb reflectors of the 50’s and 60’s but certainly served their purpose.
The lens covers cleaned up well with soap and water using a toothbrush to get into tight corners. The outer surfaces had some micro-scratches which were largely removed using AutoSol and in the end, when mounted on the car, looked as good as new.
Note that in the above picture you can just see that the gasket is upside down. I noticed this when looking at the photo and have corrected it – just haven’t taken another photo yet!
Getting the light cluster units mounted meant finding some more nuts since there were a few missing. I eventually discovered that they were 3BA and ordered some in stainless. These fitted the thread but not any of the spanners that I had so I ground out an old small spanner that I had since trying to tighten them with pliers was a non-starter.
Once mounted, I was able to complete the boot wiring. I had already laid the wires from the cockpit to the boot before the trimming started so just needed to make up a new loom for the boot lights and connect it up. At the moment I’ve wired both reversing lamps up as reversing lamps but I’ve put in a red/yellow wire so that the near-side reversing lamp could be converted to a rear fog light at some stage. The original bulb-holders were pretty rusty and to save cleaning up all the contact surfaces I thought it would be a good idea to source new ones. Although these are nice and shiny, the quality is not that good since I had to resort to soldering the contact ring to the bulb earth tag on a couple of holders – the contact ring pulled out of the holder as I was removing them from the lamp cluster.
The wiring itself turned out reasonably tidy but the carpet trimming looked a bit of a mess. This is mainly due to TVR’s original design which didn’t provide any covers for the lamp clusters and just relied on the floor carpet covering them up. Also the carpet around the side markers was trimmed too high so will need some re-work to at least get the carpet down to floor panel level.