Stopping With The Times

First post of the year so I wish you a Happy New Year, also hoping that you had a great Christmas and well-earned break too. This year my wife and I decided to ask each other what we wanted for gifts and that we would stick to a reasonable agreed budget between us. The simple reason is that we have spent most of our cash trying to sort our house out and trying to pay some bills off for the materials we used. The wife’s list was around the usual girly pampering lotions and potions as expected. Mine revolves around the Mustang with its own lotions and potions for its pampering. My list only had a couple of bottles from Auto Finesse I wanted to try out, which I will review throughout the year with the other products I have to review, around twenty in fact that I haven’t as yet reviewed. To make up my options for the list I wanted to update the garage and a little gadget for the car, both of which she bought for me. 😀

As my Mustang just fits in the garage with about an inch at the front and just a few inches to the rear. I can park the car pretty well, but I am paranoid about hitting the back of the garage wall for obvious reasons. To try and protect the car from such an event the wall now has foam pipe lagging stuck on the wall with a large Snap On floor pad on top of that. To stop in the right place I normally rely on the good old-fashioned hanging ball to touch the windscreen and works perfectly every time, but it doesn’t look pretty.

I have been looking on-line for parking aids; tyre ramps, laser, twin lasers and ultrasonic variations. Lasers looked like to much of a hassle and didn’t give much of a visual aid. Tyre ramps would get in the way and could be moved when the car wasn’t on them, so that left ultrasonic. There are so many variables on the market, traffic light style or single red LED varieties. I liked the look of was the twin sensors and a box mounted at eye level that gave a count down to the final position.

The set up needed a flat surface or bumper to work correctly. The mustang has very little in the way of a truly flat surfaces. The only relatively flat surface I could think of was the number plate. Some of the other sensor styles need a minimal distance of 12″ or so. This particular model needs a minimum of 6″ inches and takes the closest of the two readings. The sensors will activate when they detect movement and the count numbers display. So you park the car where you want and a number will be displayed. You then drive to that number and stop. Simple.

I made a few test locations and pushed the car out and back in again a few times. Each time the box did exactly what it was supposed to do, counted down. From the back of he car I pushed the car forward and stopped at the mark ’07’ (inches). Perfect. It doesn’t look neat at the moment as I want to make sure the positioning is correct before I tidy it up properly.

How close do I have to park to the wall? This close!

I have written a review of the product and installation here. Or it can be found under the Accessory menu.

Now my sense of direction is legendary, it’s so bad I get lost going home! Honestly it’s true. With that in mind, the other item I wanted was a something quite common in modern cars which is a bluetooth connection, but not that common on a classic Mustang. There are multiple ways around my little issue, a new technology radio made to look old – an expensive option. A new modern replacement radio that needs a hole cut into the dash – a lot of damage to the original dash, but can be cheaper. Or a halfway house that I have; an original Mustang radio adapted. My particular radio was sold to me as working when I bought it from the USA via Ebay. By the time I got the radio and was able to test the unit it certainly didn’t work anymore. 😠 Anyway, a contact of Mustang Maniac helped me out by connecting an input from a 3.5mm jack plug wire. This means that an ipod or phone needed a physical connection. It worked fine, but I wasn’t a lover of having a wire from the dash, blame my OCD for that. Then a friend of mine then told me about this gadget that connects a bluetooth dongle receiver and then inputs that signal into the radio, a similar setup to what I had, although he had a modern radio. This means that I could connect my phone for music, or more importantly, a Sat Nav turn by turn prompt. I already have a great Tom Tom Sat Nav which I could stick on the window, again my OCD didn’t like it and so I had it mounted on the centre console, the trouble with that is that I had to look down at it now and again as I couldn’t hear it over the engine noise, not exactly safe. With this new option I could have my radio on connected via bluetooth to my Samsung S9+ phone using Google Maps with voice turn by turn. The built in dash speaker is much louder than the Tom Tom unit so I would be able to hear what direction I needed to now. I could have speakers in the door, in the kick panels or in the rear parcel shelf. Again all of which my OCD won’t allow of course. Now I have a tiny receiver hidden in the glove box that just needs to be turned on and off I go.

It works and I love it. I have also written a review of it here.

So my old school Mustang still looks stock, but now the media function has been upgraded into the modern world again. This latest upgrade goes with the other modern goodies like my LED lights front and rear, modern wire loom with blade fuses, electronic ignition, LED dash bulbs, voltmeter etc.

Any other good gadgets out there I need to know about? Please let me know. This List idea works great as you get what you want and not a pair socks to go in the draw with the rest. In fact I got a pair of socks as well – but they had the Shelby Logo on them so they are acceptable. 😀

Share my Content

She’s Alive

What an epic day down at Mustang Maniac yesterday, I was so chuffed I can’t put it into words. OK, that’s not strictly true as I’m gonna tell you all about it. So I knew this weekend was going to be a day where it could be possible to start my car in theory. I was going try to start the wiring up again in order to turn her over on the key. Adam just looked at Yogi and laughed with “don’t worry about that, it will start!” Slightly confused, I sort of guessed what was going to happen when Yogi got out his little box of tricks and made up a lead while I fitted my Replica Autolite Group 24 Battery to the tray. They said that I would need some fuel for the car and I was packed off with an old school Jerry can and my wallet. I guess I had better get used to this filling the Muzzy up lark! I was given directions on how to get to the petrol station which was only a couple of miles away, it didn’t go in so I asked again, to which Yogi just laughed. So of I went, found it after over shooting the turning. Now I am not saying this place is old school, but there was a hut between two pumps and the sign said “Service fill only.” The bloke came out and got the diesel nozzle out, “No mate – fill this up unleaded” as I gave him the loaned Jerry can. With the can filled up and returned back to the yard, all without a SatNav. Yes, I admit it – I’m useless with directions, so much so that the very first thing my wife bought for me years ago when we got together was a TomTom. To which she said to me “Now I know you’re going get home,” Yep, she can have that one,  as I have genuinely got lost going home before now. Anyway, we got a funnel in the filler pipe of my car and poured some fuel in. We sloshed it around a bit by rocking the car and then lifted the car back up in the air and drained it out into a clear container to check the fuel. It was fine, clear with no debris in there. The fuel poured back into the tank. At the front of the car Yogi had now created his “Hot Wire” scenario and was ready to turn the car over. Now I could tell you how to start a car bypassing all the electrics on the car, but I won’t for obvious reasons, but it’s clever. Adam and I joined Yogi and he done his thing, the car turned over for a while until Adam and Yogi where happy there was no bad news noises on turn over. This was a very wise check to make sure the crank was not going to shatter or valves dropped on pistons etc. Adam now under the car turned the engine over by hand with a large ratchet to line up the TDC on the timing mark. Yogi then set the distributor shaft itself to where it should be, based on experience at this point of course. He then set up the wires to produce a spark and Adam pumped a little fuel in the carb and Adam now got to the front and was ready to adjust the timing on the distributor, Yogi spun the car over. The car turned over for a few seconds, she coughed and spluttered and fired up after a few seconds. The timing was adjusted by Adam and they wedged opened the butterfly on the choke to slow the engine down. She lives! The engine was shut down after a minute or so and a blur of hands worked over the engine to adjust things and tighten things up. Like watching synchronised swimming, but this was two guys saying only a few words and flurry of well rehearsed activity. The movement stopped, and the car turned over and she started up pretty instantly. This time the engine was getting quitter and was smooth, but that was the exact opposite of what was going on at the exhaust end. The burble and noise from those Flowmasters was fantastic as I now stood at the back listening to duet of exhaust notes and thunderous air vibration. The unique tone of my car was now heard for the first time, trying to take in the sounds played around my ears was incredible. The throttle was now starting to be pulsed by the guys, the exhaust note changing rapidly into a throaty bark. The timing light was now out and some very fine tuning was coming into play. Yogi was tweaking the carb and Adam was checking the fluid levels and making sure there were no leaks. The engine now slowed to an unmistakable throb of the 289 v8. Three blokes looked well chuffed as John and Chris popped over to see the action. The engine now stopped and quiet except for the ticking of the cooling engine filled the air, all I couldn’t say anything. I was ecstatic that the car fired up one step closer to driving her, and relief that my  and the guys hard work so far hadn’t gone to waste. The road test will need to be done obviously, but for now – I was a little gob smacked and overwhelmed with excitement a milestone had been reached. So far so good.

The fitting of the last part of the fuel line to the carb was the “banjo”, this turns the direction of the pipe ninety degrees  and an adjustable to the main fuel line. Yogi had set up the rubber hose ready for the fitting of the part. The filter from the carb was fitted into the end of the banjo.

The complete fitting was carefully lined up and tightened up to the carb, the angle of the pipe matched to the fuel hose. The hose was pushed on and tightened up.

Previously in the week the export brace had been fitted to the bulk head and the shock towers. Adam tells me that they used their custom-made conical fit bolts for the export brace, without having to file the holes square to make them fit. The bolts used are dome headed and stainless, not the nut and bolt of the original fitting and how they were then. These conical bolts fit into the standard holes and the tightening of the nut pulls the bolt into the brace tighter wedging them in so they don’t move. The result is pretty instant to look at and makes a big difference to the feel of the car. There is a common fault with fitting the export brace to a unstrengthened bulk head. The original export cars had a reinforced plate welded in place, this can be seen clearly on my car here too. The good news it that the brace fitted without need for cutting and adjusting to make it fit as some cars need. The reason is that those cars could have been in a little knock or “fender bender” and distorted the chassis. The work the guys had done on the jig was just perfect as always.

brace1

The guys left me to get on with the rest of the jobs under the hood, that was now to fit the wires to the oil sender, water temperature, electric choke and the ignition feeds to the coil, all can now be routed where I wanted them. But that was to be after a cup of tea, a few cakes and a bottle of chilled Dr Pepper. All these little jobs took longer than I thought they would, but who cares? My little lady is alive again and I still had that silly grin on my face. I have just got to say a big “Thanks” to Adam and Yogi for starting her up with me and showing me how to hot wire my car, just in case of emergencies of course. 😉

What an AMAZING day, thanks Mustang Maniac.  

My car may well be at the Enfield Pageant of Motoring this coming weekend with Mustang Maniac’s other cars. It’s a great show so wander over and have a chat with guys. The details can be found at this link:

http://www.whitewebbsmuseum.co.uk/html/body_enfield_pageant.html

Share my Content

His & Hers

This weekend was a chillaxing weekend for a change and I decided to look at some Classic Cars at a Show in the town of Buntingford (UK), each year the organisers manage close the main street and get the cars all parked up along the narrow road. It was my first time there and I doubt it will be my last either as everybody was quite friendly when talking to them about their cars. It was nice to see families out and not just the petrol heads who needed their octane fix! There were hundreds of different cars there from every era. The war years, modern-day cars, hot rods, trucks, kit cars & bike all gleaming in the sun. While I was at the show I meet Adam from Mustang Maniac who was there with one of their new additions to the garage, a lovely 1965 v8 Coupe. I have taken quite a few pictures but these were the better photo’s from all the cars. What took my eye at the car show? A couple of Cobra replicas that were identical except for under the hood area. One was red the other blue. I could only assume (and would like to think) that they were his and hers!

There were some classic Jaguars

Pre War(s) Cars (I think)

War Years (not so sure about the machine gun though!)

wil

Hot Rods & Trucks

Muscle and Mustangs

Classic UK Cars

Some Of The rest

Review:

I have also completed my TomTom Go 600 SatNav Review which can be found under the accessories menu. I have managed to get the main information together and user guide that most of the other reviews seem to miss out with some photos of it in use. Most reviewers seem to want to trash this SatNav for some reason. But I want something that works and not just have the function to change colours or the shape of an icon for the car – but these people never they never moan when it takes them down a dirt track because it don’t work properly.

My car:

Most of what I have done on the car today has been in man cave, I have been rubbing down some filler trying to achieve that perfect finish for the paint.

Quick Link: TomTom Go 600 review click here

Share my Content

Photos of Enfield Pageant 2013

25th – 27th May 2013 Enfield Pageant

Busy weekend for me as I paid a well deserved visit down to the Enfield Pageant. I was given my day pass out to play on my own, the good lady wife even gave me some “pocket money” and a couple of drinks to take. The journey took just over an hour and half to get there and I left early to get there before the rush. Wrong! The world and his mate was there. It was a big car park field next to the event field itself. I was certain I was going to lose the car, so I set my phone GPS app to pinpoint my car location and saved it for future reference to get home. I was still full of cold but the excitement was overtaking the misery of the sniffing all the way down there. I paid my money to get and started the walk around. There were hundreds of stalls there with everything from flower pots to front bumpers, toilet cisterns to track rod ends. Why would anybody want to see a toilet cistern at a car rally? Come to that, why take it there to sell it? It worked obviously, because somebody was walking around with it like a new-born baby cuddled to their chest! Anyway the tables had all sorts of things on therefrom tools to tins of car paint, and rear lights to front wings. It was mostly UK stuff there but it was impressive display no less. In my enthusiasm when I got there I started to Tweet a few pics of the cars. I obviously forgot the time difference to this side of the pond to the USA. Sorry If I woke anybody up. But hey, it was worth it. Hover the mouse over the pics and little box should appear with some quick details for you.

British:

I saw many British old cars there such as old Austins, MG’s, Minis, Jaguars: a couple of gorgeous E-types, various Fords: Escorts, Anglia & even a Jensen Interceptor. The Ford Anglia is my very earliest memory of driving in a car, My late Grandfather owned a grey one just like this and the memories flooded back. I remember chuckling and giggling like mad when we went over a bump. The bench seat in the back would make us fly up in the air! Couldn’t do that sort of thing now days.

Exotic:

There was the exotic Ferrari or two, one bloke was standing there with a big gold medallion open shirt next to his Ferrari, when I got near his car he got ready for me to take his picture – err. no! So sorry folks, I reserve the right not to have pictures of that sort on here. lol. There was an interesting v8 bike that looked pretty awesome that started up and drowned the music out. There was a Pontiac Dragster that had BIG bottles of NOS inside it and some pretty heft fuel lines! The Hot Rod pics I took just for my friend Debbie at http://hoodscoop03.wordpress.com/

Vans:

There was some vans that had amazing paint jobs on them. Then the went a ruined it by hanging dolls out the back in a cage just like the film it was named after – Pirates of the Caribbean. Was it over the top, bit of fun or tacky? I thought the later as the van’s paint was incredible.

American Cars:

This is what I was hoping for and I was not disappointed. We had Chargers, Oldsmobile, Pontiacs, Mustangs, Chevys, Trucks all sorts in fact. Perhaps somebody could give me an idea as what some of these are and I will add the details to the pics.  Please feel free to correct me as I am starting to learn the cars.

Best till last? – The Mustangs:

I found Mustang Maniac and I was impressed with the Motorhome they had to speak to potential customers and existing customers. I was treated to a Sausage sandwich when I got there, Thanks for that Adam. The guys were there Terry, John & Adam. I got speaking to a guy called Yogi, unusual name but he has been reading my blog. Now he has a face to the “man” with a Mustang. 🙂 Moving swiftly along then, Adam did indeed get the Indy 500 hundred Pace Car out for the first time in three years so I am told. The pace car understandably had a constant stream of people looking at her. There were Mustang Maniac customer cars there too, one guy called Martin even drove up from Stockport to support Adam at the show with his ’67 Fastback. His car was a bit of a head turner to say the least. Mustang Maniac has a full set of Photo’s from the day and has updated his blog with some new pictures too. Quick link to his blog http://mustangmaniac.org/

Other Mustangs around the show:

There was this signed ’68 with all sorts of names all over it. I don’t know why but it looked amazing. Unfortunately I couldn’t quite get the pictures to work with the ’68 Bullitt car, they had a dummy inside holding a cigarette with a face mask on of Paul Newman. Shame it didn’t come out.

Other Views:

The advantage of getting there early, you can see a lot of the cars coming in. When this picture was taken the place was just starting to fill up. A lot of the cars were dirty from their journey down and a some frantic cleaning and polishing was going on. along with topping up of fluids and head scratching!

An early morning view.
An early morning view.

When the show was getting late I decided to go home and you’re wondering if I found the car? The app was perfect and I was directed to the car within feet of it. The funny thing was my car was all on its on own, and I spotted it yards away. But I wanted to test the app regardless. I was asked what did I buy with my pocket money? I purchased some Imperial small stubby spanners, some cans of spray primer & some Redex. The journey home was a real pain, there was a major traffic jam on the M25 motorway and everything ground to a halt. I was sitting in the traffic and hot, I didn’t care to much as I was still glowing over the cars I had seen and new friends I spoken too. After a few minutes we crept forward and I decided to turn off the motorway. The SatNav was havin’ a mental and wanted me to “Turn around when possible”.  I reset the route home from the little town I was in and the trip home was through some glorious countryside in the evening sun. Maybe next year I could be in my Mustang, maybe, just maybe. I got home without any trouble thanks to the SatNav and to add to my cold I do believe I got a touch of hay fever too. Mind you I couldn’t tell the difference between the cold and the hay fever. But I do say the sun done me the world of good, not to mention the smell of old car, burning oil and rust metal that also helped. The advantage to an old car rally? I was standing next to bloke he was buying a top hose to his ’60’s mini, it had blown on the way to the pageant, he was chuffed as he was going back to his car to change it and drive home again. Just how cool is that?

Share my Content