Cars


Mini Rebuild

 

Step 28 - Back on Four Wheels

 

Tuesday, March 24, 2009:

 

Mini Rebuild - Step 28

After finding that the aluminum rear subframe I purchased was going to push the back wheels too far rearward and would require major modification to the KAD aluminum swing arms, I decided to go with another design. This steel one is made by David Kimberley of TDK Racing and closely matches the general layout of the stock swingarm. Time to fit it up...

 

Mini Rebuild - Step 28

The first problem was the rear seat bottoms were interfering with the fit of the subframe. Luckily, I have a very specialized tool to automatically convert convex sheet metal shapes to concave. It worked perfectly. Here you can see the before (left side) and the after (right side).

 

Mini Rebuild - Step 28

Test fitting the KAD swing arms revealed that two small modifications would need to be made. A notch would need to be cut out of the swing arm and a notch would need to be cut out of the subframe end plate. Easy enough.

 

Mini Rebuild - Step 28

Before.

 

Mini Rebuild - Step 28

After.

 

Mini Rebuild - Step 28

 

Mini Rebuild - Step 28

This subframe does not use the standard outside mounting locations in the body. Instead, I had to drill my own holes through the subframe and through the body shell.

 

Mini Rebuild - Step 28

This is where I'm thankful TCDesign welded in that 1"x2" steel tubing as reinforcement on the back side of the heel board. This gave the subframe something very solid to mount to. The difficult part was aligning the subframe properly. If it is off, it will throw my alignment off.

 

Mini Rebuild - Step 28

And when I was finally done, I roller her outside. This is the first time since early July that the car has been on its own wheels. It looks especially small to me when I focus on the driver's seat and how it seems to take up most of the interior. Ignore the ride height and rake for now. The spring height and alignment settings are all over the place at the moment.

 

Mini Rebuild - Step 28

 

Mini Rebuild - Step 28

Last week I talked about fitting u-joints to the steering column. Here you can see them as well as how this changes the alignment of the steering column. An additional benefit of this arrangement is that in a crash, the column should be more likely to fold up, rather than center-punch my chest. (For the record, the Mini uses 9/16" diameter, 36 spline shafts.)

 

Mini Rebuild - Step 28

And this brings me to my current project - securing the steering column.

 

Mini Rebuild - Step 28

To assist me in my work, I finally got my Mig welder up and running. This will help me fab up some sort of a pedal box mount. More on that soon I hope.

 

Mini Rebuild - Step 28

 

Continue to Rebuild Step 29

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