Thursday 20 October 2011

Slam Panel Part 3 - The Revenge!

Well no, it did not have a revenge on me, I think I have possibly seen too many Jaws films. Although saying that Ms Skyline can sink her teeth into my knuckles now and again!

Continued work on the slam panel today. Flatted back the nice new shiney paint with 1200 grit, even though it wasn't the recommended 24 hours since spraying it, I decided that this was more of a guideline rather than a hard and fast rule... I can be patient... Okay no I wasn't!

It did make me slightly nervous to flatten all of my beautiful black gloss, but hey ho, in for a penny and all that. So after the regulation two minutes shaking I applied two coats of clear laquer leaving 15 minutes between coats.

The finish (for me) is lovely... Although it's very black compared to it's surroundings, this will be fine when all the bright work is replaced.
Finished Slam Panel

I also worked on a couple of the nasty galvanised brackets and sprayed them with a special plastic finish paint. This is textured and dries a matt black. I used this as to get a good gloss finish is a pain, I also thought it would be a good contrast with the (now) high gloss finish.

Plastic Effect Bracket

Whilst on the subject of bright work, I have been experimenting with some 1mm thick rubber and plan to mount this under the fittings of non important parts to save my nice new finish from excessive marking.

Tuesday 18 October 2011

Slam Panel Part two..

Painting... It drives me nuts! Really!

Okay rant over.. Mini rant that it was. Smoothed off the prime coat this evening and gave a generous blast of black KH1 Kuro Black. Reasonably pleased with the results there are a few 'pin holes' where there is probably contaminants on the surface, but not enough to make me want to sand it all off!

Tomorrow will be the brown trousers. I will give the paint a light sand with 1200 grit to Matt it up and then apply some clear lacquer. This is the bit that is easiest for me to mess up as it's hard to know where to stop with the lacquer!

Here's the work so far... Just looks like a lot of black to me! It's there, honest!

What else did I achieve tonight? Well I have had delivery of a couple of black silicone coupler pipes. I must say, I like, I like a lot! I was thinking perhaps to replace a few more whilst everything is out of the car. However it is a pain to order sizes or for that matter measure sizes, especially as all the pipes are off the car. The only other thing to foil my plan for all couplers to be replaced is the fact that one coupler is buried under all the brown paper shown in the picture...

One other thing I may conduct an experiment with is braided hose. Well, self braided hose to be exact. You can buy braiding to cover existing hoses, it looks a bit of a Devil to do though, in fact the more I think about it the less I want to do it. Will put on my investigating hat!

Painting Heat Shield and Slam Panel

So I have dived straight into work on the final touches for Ms Skyline. After detaching all the pipework I removed the heat sheild from the exhaust manifold as this was letting the side down with it's unattractive looks. I have been warned about painting this as the paint can 'crack off' and would leave it in a worse state than it started. Although I beleive that this would have been if the part was painted in 'normal' acrylics, besides the heat sheild is already painted in silver, so what the hell. I naturally went for a rather fetching shade of black (what else!) High Temperature paint. I can't see me having problems with this although time will tell! I also replaced the three bolts along the visible edge on the top of the sheild with Stainless items. 

If you look to the back of the picture by the turbo, you can see the lovely stainless HKS heatshield plate of the 2835 Pro. The temptation is to infill the backing to the logo in black, although I must resist! 

I have also started work on the 'slam panel' at the front of the car. I know to do it 100% proper I could have removed the fan and headlights. Naturally I have gone for the easy option here! Sorry to all purists out in the world!

No, I'm not going for a fetching shade of grey! This is just the prime coat, the finish will be just plain boring black, the same as the car. Naturally I want to get this out of the way as quickly as possible, with as little mess and fuss as I can get away with.

Monday 17 October 2011

A Win of sorts..

Well Ms Skyline is back, alas not without a healthy dose of drama! What should have been a straight forward job soon developed into a pain in the butt. I dropped the car into the garage on Saturday morning, the plan being that the work would be done and the car on the dyno by Friday. Wednesday and the first problem reared its ugly head in the shape of a cracked exhaust manifold, this was a real problem as where the hell could a new one be sourced. As luck would have it the garage knew of a used item that could be purchased for £50 locally. Result then and drama avoided. Oh that it were, the replacement manifold was warped and would not fit. Giving the garage it's dues they managed to source another from JDM garage, these are probably the most expensive and unreliable source of parts in the UK. True to form they wanted £86 for the part, although I was desperate so would have probably said yes to anything at that point. Giving JDM Garage their due's they did come through and had the part at the garage next day. Although I would still suspect being 'the man in the street' and not 'the garage'. I would have had a slightly different experience.

So with new 'old' manifold, turbo and camshafts fitted the car went to the tuner...

Naturally this didn't go well either and a decent tick over could not be achieved. To cut the story short, the garage had fitted a R34 camshaft to my R33 (approx 1.5mm extra lift).

Now I can accept a mistake, although everyone seemed to point at everyone else. The garage were not happy and I got a distinct vibe that they were upset at having to do the job again. Personally I can't see how I would have been at fault here, as for once, all I did was pay the money, leaving sourcing of parts to them! The garage said that the wrong camshaft was in the right box. Well it could happen...

The correct camshaft was promised for the start of the week. I heard nothing, nothing and nothing. I asked when the car would be going in and was told maybe Thursday. happily this happened and the car did its thing. I took Friday off work to collect her.

I will come back to the tune etc. in a different post.

The car was unhappy cosmetically under the hood. For some bizarre reason I had beautiful bright blue pipework! What the worlds obsession with blue silicone is I dunno, but it has to go! Where the heat shield fits there are two new bolts and the slam panel had been drilled badly to fit these (can only assume the original bolts were lost). There were plenty of scratches on the slam panel too, the bracket to hold the air filter in place was loose, the Strut brace had been tightened by the bionic man, cracking the powder coating both sides and the new pipework for the turbo was looking a bit tired.

So it's all action again in another lurch towards the finish line. I have prepped the slam panel for painting, removed, polished the pipework, removed the strut brace pending painting and have some silicone black pipes and clamps on order.

Have yet to decide anything, I may send the pipework to chrome, if I do that then I may as well do the strut brace at the same time and get the end's re-powder coated. The silicone is on it's way, although I really need to finished the slam panel. The car's tax is due although possibly I will put this off a month and just forget I own the car a bit!

Think of this as an interim post.. whilst I work out what to do next!