July AHX 12 Progress Report.
AHX 12 is back in Ft. Erie with work proceeding under
the guidance of Blair and Lou Cardilli. Things are coming along well, but
with only 6 weeks now before the car has to be loaded for shipping
to Newfoundland the pressure is definitely ON.
One major hurdle that we had to resolve was coming up with a roll bar assembly that would fit under the hardtop. I think people must have been proportioned differently in the ‘50s. Blair and I have found that with the hard top on and the special, very low, race seats installed there is barely room to sit in the car with a helmet on. Neither of us are over 6 feet but it is starting to look as though we are both going to have to go in for emergency surgery to have a few vertebrae removed if it starts to rain and we want to
use the hard top.
After much discussion, measuring and adjustment of seating positions Blair has come up with a very elegant solution which is both strong and small enough to fit under the hard top; but still, we will have to sit on one layer of thin bubble wrap if that hardtop is on!!
We wanted to avoid running a brace bar forward into the footwell as I had done on the “S” because we found that this was very inconvenient in last years event. As you can see a strong and tidy safety hoop has been fitted over the driveshaft. The driveshaft itself was built by grafting parts of the Toyota pickup shaft onto a 1500 Midget one.
The spare wheel is going to fit very tidily close to where it is originally on a 100. The Targa rules actually allow us to carry two spares but as none of the competitors actually terminally damaged a tire last year we are pretty confident that one will be adequate.
The next challenge was the transmission tunnel. Blair is a wizard with this type of thing and has produced a really snug fitting but easily removable tunnel which will allow us even more room in the cockpit than a standard 100. The released handbrake tucks down below the flat upper surface which will be really handy for mounting things like fire extinguishers and intercom jacks.
Dzus fasteners will be used to attach the bonnet and this
is another example of the quality parts that Blair and Lou can come up
with. To allow room for the airbox and intake duct we had to remove the
vertical brace that would normally be used to attach the shroud at the
side of the engine compartment. To solve this brackets have been fitted
to secure the shroud to the structure that supports the radiator. The front
the shroud is secured by another bracket riveted to the shroud itself and bolted to the frame horns.
To improve access for repairs and maintenance the aluminium
inner fenders, themselves hand fashioned by Blair, are secured by a few
bolts which will allow them to be easily removed.
Next week it is off to Rick Aiello for final fit and paint. Hopefully we will be test driving in two weeks.