Yes, unbelievable as it may seem, I started working on the cars again for the first time in years. The interspersing of home improvement and Esprit work has begun as pledged.
Removing the body gets easier the more you do it. This is the fifth time I have removed an Esprit body but it is the first time I have done it leaving much of the body assembled.
The pedal box is tricky as it is secured to the frame first with these locking clip washers that cannot be removed and then via four Allen head bolts that apparently cannot be reached. The trick to getting to them on one side is to remove the fuse panel. The other side is reached by removing the fan box and plate that seals the box from the passenger compartment.
The locking clip washers are not removed. They magically remove themselves as the body is lifted. On the right hand side there is a single bolt that goes through a dash support rod down into the frame. Access to this bolt (and others) can be impeded by the installation of certain equipment whose aim is to impede the drivers auditory input of the melodious Esprit V8 engine.
Some brilliant person installed a bass kicker speaker box in the passenger foot well. I guessed correctly that it was attached to the body from within the box itself - requiring the removal of the grate, speaker, and stuffing to access the drywall screws that attached it to the body. The bolt to the frame is easily removed with this box out of the way.
Unless you are a member of the Fantastic 4, a slave boy may be required to hold wrenches or twist ratchets for 6 of the bolts. I used him for four of them.
In the engine compartment there many things to forget to detach, which prove quite entertaining when trying to lift the body including:
- Power steering
lines (and hose to engine)
Speaking of fuel tanks, there are hoses that run from the bottom of each tank to a steel interconnecting pipe that passes through the frame. These hoses need to be removed and doing so can be quite an exciting part of the project as all the gas left in both tanks will rush out of two openings simultaneously when either hose is disconnected from the pipe. The fun includes guessing how much fuel could be left in the tanks when the car was wrecked and whether the capacity of your catch basin is more or less than that, which may require you to have to switch in the middle. I recommend two of Special Tool #G27 for this task and no sparks or open flames.
There may be a few other little items that I did not mention that need disconnection but what fun would it be if I listed everything? Remove the muffler and rear bumper and valance.
At this point you take a a moment to look at how the battery acid spilled during the wreck has eaten the metal brackets under the rear bumper. Then you screw a 8' 4x4 under the rear of the body.
You then attach your cherry picker to the front and hope that you can repair the additional body damage that you are inflicting.
We then start lifting.
This is where I like to play a little game called what the fu** is making the frame rise in the air with the body???!!!!?? Something I forgot to disconnect again? Or could it be the dreaded - the ravine bent the frame into the body so now it is stuck to it and can't come free scenario?
The right side looks ok. So let's check the left.
It is for this very reason that God invented large heavy pry bars and curses to say when wielding them. And after the battle is over....
Deja Vu all over again. The damage to the right rear included loss of the spring, shock, and a broken hub carrier. As such, the chassis wanted to squat in the right rear and lift the left front so the jack was needed to lift the right rear and walk it out.
I guess the next thing to do is to clear some space for the new frame.
That's enough for now.... Back to finishing the kid's bathroom.
That's the end of the update as of February 17, 2008.