After a long period of not getting much done, I’ve found a second wind! I’m aiming for an MOT pass by the end of March – so lots of small jobs to be done in order to get the taxi ready. I reckon I can have the taxi ready for the MOT this coming week, which will inevitably flag up some small things, but hopefully on a less spectacular level than the MOT Failure a couple of years back. I can then use the remaining week or so to get the problems sorted and have it through a free re-test. My insurance is restarting from tomorrow – I got a great deal this time with Adrian Flux (who now insure two other cars in the household) – £195 for the year, with comprehensive cover on other cars. I’m not sponsored or anything like that, but I do find them reliable and by far the cheapest… Footman James came out with £650!
When I wrote the previous post in summer of 2020, I had got stuck into repairing the copious amounts of rust in the rear wheel arches and I had got as far as cutting out the boot floor. It’s been a bit of a drag since then, with the welding taking up a huge amount of time. Every session I spent in the garage, I found myself welding a patch in, but cutting twice the amount out! I struggled to make any meaningful headway and work all but stopped during the winter months.
It’s only been in the last week that I’ve found some motivation to get back into the welding in order to get things on track again. Everyday that passed where work wasn’t getting done I got more and more annoyed with myself, it was a case of ‘I’ll start again tomorrow’… In the end, I had to force myself into the garage and take things in tiny little chunks. I realised I was so daunted by the whole project and was therefore put off doing anything whatsoever. By setting myself tiny little goals I found myself in a much better frame of mind and in many cases ended up spending the whole day in the garage.
So where has that bought me to today? Well, I have completed the rear wheel arches, the inner sills and body mounts have been repaired, the boot is now a boot again, the new rear wings are in place, the outer sills are back on and I’m feeling well on track!
I’ve spent the last few days working on the engine, with an oil change, finding and cleaning an insane amount of black sludge in the inlet manifold, a coolant flush and refill, and I’m in the process of welding in a new battery tray.
I plan to give a decent write up of all these things in a bit more detail, but for now I’ll leave these photos.
So, things left to do before MOT:
- Remount the front wings and rewire the old headlights. I had HID lights on here which are still too unreliable to get through an MOT, I will be putting the original halogens back in. I also feel like I’ve been through my bling-white-headlight phase and I want this renovation to reflect something a little more classic.
- Remount the bumpers
- Reducing black smoke & emissions – injector cleaning, blank off the EGR
- Change the tyres
- New bearings on front wheels
- I would like to fill the gap between the inner wheel arches and the bottom of the rear wings. This will stop water ingress and mud building up. I’m thinking of using a foam tape which expands. I definitely don’t want to chuck a ton of filler in there… Any suggestions welcome!
These are just jobs to get the MOT sorted. After that is all the body work! Rusty doors. Can’t wait!
Before you go – do you know where I might find a replacement gear stick lever for the Fairway? I recall seeing these on commercial trucks from the 90’s but I don’t know which ones and can’t find any reference to them online, apart from an eBay listing from Leacy Classics for over £330.