The still crumpled Peugeot in the corner of the workshop where it will live for most of the year:
I took the car down to the local bodyshop for them to straighten it out. £150 later and the leg was straight, bottom rail was straight, new N/S wing painted (that I got for free at FCS years ago), and all fitted with one of the old bumpers:
I went up to devere who had a new windscreen (fitted in previous photo), Nissens rad, and a fibreglass air box that should fit over the rad. Unfortunately after trial fitting it didn't line up properly, probably due to the inlet manifold being a little longer than what he used to run:
For the time being I've put it to one side to try and figure out later on. I'm probably going to switch to a 205 rad with a header tank and have the connectors on the rad modified to fit the same pattern as a 306.
As I was doing the wiring I figured why not buy a new, lightweight dash as well...
Dash comes in 2 pieces so a few M6 bolts and we're together:
Also had to cut a hole to allow space for the Satchshift:
My girlfriend knocked up a handy plate to mount it at the bottom:
Lights and some of the switches mounted:
Also mounted the extinguisher control unit:
I bought a Neptune bulkhead connector for some ridiculous cost but they're highly recommended so decided it was worth it rather than trying to bodge something else. I already had a few holes in the bulkhead for previous connectors so decided to cut the whole lot out and make a new plate to mount in there instead.
On to the loom itself. I made my own wiring diagrams and bought all the wire, connectors, etc. to make it myself as I figured how hard can it be? As it turns out, long and not much fun at all. I made the loom from scratch and twisted all the wires to provide myself flexibility then covered in braid on the inside and heatshrink and braid on the engine bay loom. To make it easier to take the dash out I put some Deutsch connectors in and a big connector for main power.
Loom before covering, took about a month of assembly in the evenings to get to this point:
I made some of the runs a bit longer so I can chop it down once I laid it out in the car. Here I'm checking the lengths of where the main loom needs to go to behind the dash:
Fuse box and ECU are mounted next to each other against the bulkhead. Here I'm checking lengths against the fuse box. I think this was also the first time I put the assembled loom in the car:
Once I had an idea of lengths I could cover with braid for protection:
Connectors made for the dash switches and lights:
Connectors on the main loom:
The joy of the main bulkhead connector! Particularly difficult with all the ECU wires in there:
First bit of fuse box wiring:
Testing it all works before going in the car:
The rear lights actually working! It had taken about 3 months to get to this point:
The car had been in the corner for probably 6 months by now and was covered in crap and dust so pushed it outside for a wash:
The headlights had both broken in the crash and rather than ordering a replacement I figured I'd just buy a headlight blank from Maxi Motorsport as well. This is the first test fit of it before paint:
I learnt a lot from doing the interior loom when I came to do the engine loom and I'm super please with how it came out. Some bits aren't perfect, particularly the heatshrink covering the braid, I struggled with getting it in place and sealing properly so did have to add a bit of electrical tape to really secure everything.
I bought a set of BakerBM hoses to remove the water jacket around the oil filter and to help fix a leak I'd had for ages from the elbow by the thermostat. Lower pipe fitted:
Final wiring photo of the whole thing in. The ECU is cable tied in this photo but I've had some brackets made that I forgot to photo, will do that next time I'm down at the car.
Here's a video of it starting for the first time with the all new wiring loom. It took a long time to get there as the starter I put in the car to start with was dodgy so it would just click and pop a fuse. Once we got through that it ran as if it was on 3 cylinders. After a lot of testing I found out I'd put the pins in the engine side bulkhead connector the wrong way round so the ECU was trying to earth the oil temp sensor, doh! Swapped that round and it ran well!
When I came back the next weekend to do more work the car wouldn't start. The Omex will prime the full pump for 2 seconds before starting and, if the car dies for some reason or you stop cranking, it'll prime again. I noticed that the pump wasn't priming when I stopped starting which I guessed to mean the ECU wasn't detecting the engine was turning over so maybe there was an issue with the crank sensor. I swapped to another crank sensor, no change. When we were trying to crank it again my Dad knocked the wiring loom in the interior and it fired up. After some more digging we found that the wiring pin in the ECU loom was not getting connection to the wire properly. I bought a set of spare pins and rewired it which solved the issue, finally it ran every time!
Then, it stopped starting every time again. Once running it was ok but it would struggle to start for some reason. I thought it was the battery as it's a tiny Odyssey race battery that is 10 years old so planned to buy another battery. At one point the starter ran then kept running once the car had started which was weird, didn't figure out what happened there.
The bonnet was pretty battered after the crash so that needed to be repaired, all the fibreglass underneath was cracked. I took it and the headlight blank to the bodyshop and they sorted it all out for me for £90.
We got a new truck for racing so loaded the car up to get the geo done:
Put on the window stickers and I think the green looks awesome:
As I've got the new dash I had to make new extinguisher nozzle mounts. I've also had the extinguisher serviced ready for the year of racing... that'll be worthwhile!
Also needed to get some new harnesses:
While racing the MX5 my helmet got a stone chip in it which meant the scrutineers were all over it each race so I decided to get the helmet painted in the Pug colours, obviously!
In March I took the car up to Snetterton for its first run since the crash and things weren't that smooth. The car constantly struggled to start so my brother nipped down to a local motorsport shop that had a direct replacement. That helped a bit but it still really struggled and gave up starting all together. It got me down quite significantly as I'd spent months and months working on the wiring and now this problem. Not only that but water was coming out of the rad cap for some reason. I think this is because I didn't bleed it with an expansion tank on top so there was still air trapped in it.
After Snet I did some digging and found that the starter button was not giving enough power to the starter motor so I'm going to slightly re-wire and have a relay in the engine bay that will power the starter solenoid, that should fix the issue. I've also bought a new rad cap and will get a pressure bleed system to make sure all the air is out of the water.
That's where we're up to!
________________________________________Rallye Race Car