Cars


Mini Rebuild

 

Step 61 - Front Suspension

 

The Mini is moving. I don't mean it is running yet. I mean I'm moving to a new place and the Mini is coming with me. That means it is vital to have her back on four wheels again. It will also help if more parts are bolted to the car rather than needing to be carefully boxed up, shipped, then unpacked and stored. So the current effort is to prep for the move.

 

Mini Rebuild Step 61

There was no reason not to bolt the passenger seat in so here it is. I've left the driver's out until I finish bleeding the brakes. Being able to steer the car around while moving seemed like another good thing so the column is back on.

 

Mini Rebuild Step 61

That couldn't happen until I made some more room in the firewall for this clamp. The grinder made a huge mess though.

 

Mini Rebuild Step 61

 

Mini Rebuild Step 61

I wanted to bolt the center instument binnacle in place but I didn't want to have to remove it later to wire up the gauges. I decided to wire everything now and run all the wires to a 6-way plug. Afterwards I looked back and found several things I would do differently next time. There is pleny of wiring left to do in the Mini so maybe by the end I'll be half-way decent at this.

 

Mini experts might have some questions about what I've done. Due to a number of issues with the original voltage regulators I've removed mine and replaced it with a modern one. You can see it stuck to the back. It will give me the required 10v for the oil temp gauge and the original fuel level gauge. Note that I won't be using the original speedo for anything other than the fuel gauge. I've also installed modern electric oil temp and oil pressure gauges on either side of the speedo.

 

Mini Rebuild Step 61

The new alloy hubs from KAD arrived. They just needed the bearings, seals, and steering arms installed prior to going on the car.

 

Mini Rebuild Step 61

Here you can see the lower balljoint spacer installed. This is something KAD offers to help correct suspension geometry on lowered cars. You can read a nice explanation here.

 

Mini Rebuild Step 61

Of course an issue arose straight away - the MondoSport steering arms conflict with the hub. Thankfully all that was required was grinding an indentation into the arm to make it all work.

 

Mini Rebuild Step 61

 

Mini Rebuild Step 61

I was so happy to finally come up with a really slick, easy, and elegant solution to mounting my two Earl's oil filters. After assembling the parts and trying to test fit them in the engine bay I realized it was all for nothing. There is just no room for anything even close to what I designed. Gutted! After lots more thought I decided I would have to fabricate some kind of custom mount. I'll have to return to that later.

 

Mini Rebuild Step 61

Here you can see the short lengths of protective heat sleeve I added to the xfer box oil lines. The engine's exhaust manifold will pass right by them, so any heat protection will be beneficial, both to the oil and the lines themselves.

 

Mini Rebuild Step 61

It took a bit of doing but the front suspension is finally complete. Note the steering arm linkages. This setup gives me a much better range of trackrod adjustment and allows me to do away with the questionable solution I was considering earlier. The other nice thing is that it should reduce or hopefully eliminate bump steer, again a potential consequence of lowering a car and altering its suspension geometry.

 

What is bump steer? Watch this 14s video for a great demonstration:

 

So bump steer is a condition where normal suspension travel causes the wheel to move inwards or outwards. With it, driving straight down the highway and hitting a bump would mean the car darts to one side. A series of bumps and dips would force the car all over the place, making it very unpredictable. Not good.

 

Mini Rebuild Step 61

The interior continues to come together. You can just spot the stainless steel brake lines under the lefthand side of the dash. The R1 instrument cluster is now mounted onto the steering column brace. The center instrument panel is bolted in as well as the central switch panel.

 

Mini Rebuild Step 61

I'm not sure what compelled me to do it now but I spent some quality time with my heat gun and installed the chrome arch trim. This is the continuous chrome strip that runs the lower length of the car and over the edge of the wheel arches. You may also notice the quarter windows are in-place. Sadly, they continue to be a thorn in my side. They don't fit the body! I have some ideas on how to adjust them but I hate them more and more every day.

 

Mini Rebuild Step 61

And finally we have the front turn signals installed.

 

Continue to Rebuild Step 62

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