Welcome to my Cobra Replica build blog.
Please contact me if you would like to know more detail as i progress."CR3514@live.com.au"

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Diff Flange

(Mods - Please read future post "Tail Shaft Part 1" for details where i changed the handbrake cable bracket location and reverted back to OE flange)

The diff flange that comes on the VE Diff has to be changed as it is too big and hits the handbrake cable mount in rotation.

The CR manual details the fitment of Ford BA Diff Flange part number (BA4851A).
The part was impossible to locate second hand without buying a complete M86 Ford Diff, so a new one was purchased, parts are limited in availability as the part is no longer manufactured.

The Ford part however didnt fit without modification, the dust cover isnt pressed on far enough for the shaft to seat on the Diff Pinion Bearing, and the shaft diameter is smaller than the VE part meaning it doesn't seal against the Pinion Seal. The VE shaft is 55mm, the BA part is 54mm.

After scouring the web, found a suitable oil seal, SKF21283, 54x80x10 which will do the job perfectly.

The standard VE Commodore Diff Flange is too big, it hits the handbrake cable mount during rotation.
The Ford BA Diff Fange Part BA4851A specified needs the Dust Cover to be pressed on further to clear the Diff Seal Housing.
In this photo, the dust cover has been pressed off and the dust cover stepped area above the diff seal shaft area has been lengthened by 3mm.

The Diff Pinion Seal needs replacing with smaller shaft ID of 54mm to suit the Ford diff flange shaft.

The original seal is easy to remove by inserting a flat blade screw driver behind the lip seal and levering outward.

Universal Seal Part Number is 21283, made by either SKF, CR, Timken etc.
54x80x10 Single Lip Oil Seal



Received my shocks in dribs and drabs over the last few weeks, Purchased from Summit Racing, they neglected to write "New" in a customs declaration which meant the items were quarantined for several weeks, (8), This was a highly anxious time as nobody knew what had happened to them.
Neither Summit or iParcel could track the parcel beyond it arriving in Australia, customs denied it had been submitted to them and even though Auspost had sent me a parcel tracking email for both packages, only the manifest had been presented, the parcels had gone missing.
I was going down the track of replacement discussions with Summit when iParcel manage to find the rear shocks in quarantine, had been sitting there for weeks without action, Discussions with AQIS finally allowed the parcel release, and a day later delivered, fronts turned up during this week having suffered the same fate.

The shocks are QA1 Double Adjustable with spherical ball ends, DD403 for the fronts fitted with 10" 375 pound QA1 springs and DD501 for the rears, fitted with 12" 400 pound QA1 springs, both with bearing seats for adjustment ease.
(Mods - After fitting sway-bar, future post, I realized I had fitted the shock lower front mount in the wrong spot, too far forward, the suggested 10" front springs meant the adjusters on this shock type interfered with the lower arm unless the spring was compressed 20mm, the result was new front 9" springs, now there is plenty of clearance through the whole movement).

They look great, very nicely finished.

Made up some bushes to space them in the chassis, shocks had to be off set in the mounting for clearance.

Front RH Shock mounted.

 Equally spaced at the top

Compression and Rebound Adjusters.

Offset spaced at the bottom so that spring adjuster clears the Lower Suspension Arm at full droop.

Rear RH Shock mounted.

Offset spacers 4mm to rear so spherical bearing mount clears chassis mount.

12" Springs compressed 15mm to clear Lower Control Arm at full droop, 11.25" length Springs would be ideal

Offset spacers so Shock Body clears Lower Control Arm.

Rear Shock Adjusters easily accessable through factory slot in Lower Control Arm.
Adjuster Knobs also have slots in them for screw driver adjustment.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Suspension Arms & Diff Mounting

Wednesday, 23rd August 2011
Front Suspension Arms mounted with VZ Commodore modified knuckles, All the Arm joints have been filled with fibre reinforced filler, then sanded primed and 2 pak coated in gloss black.
The Knuckles are ceramic coated in Aluminium by HPC Performance Coatings.
All the fixings, bolts and nuts , have been ceramic coated in gloss black, the coating is far more durable than paint or powder coat.

Front Suspension Arms.
Custom CR upper and Lower Arms, VZ Knuckles.
Rear suspension Arms,
VE Commodore Rear Lower Control Arm, Front Lower Control Arm, Tie Rod, and Custom CR Upper Control Arm.
Original and new factory bolts and nuts, cleaned and HPC coated for a durable finish.

VE Diff mounted, 3.7:1 LSD

The original diff flange hits the handbrake cable mount, some discussion with club cobra members determined i had missed a step.
The manual details the fitting of a Ford BA flange.
Need to scour the wreckers.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Chassis & Suspension Painted

Wednesday, 21st September 2011
After inspection of the painted chassis, I found the eurothane paint was peeling off the chassis around the rear suspension mountings, also wasnt happy with the welding "neatness", there was a lot of spatter on the frame, i started off sanding the paint back for a recote, but the paint just flaked off, the chassis was supposed to have been sand blasted before coating, but it wasn't, and the round uncoated tubing felt greasey in many places.
I had originally wanted a silver chassis, but this couldn't be accomadated with CR, as they only used eurothane paint and solid colors are all thats available.
I had concluded that black was the way it would be, but having to repaint gave me the desire to change color again.
Chassis went off for sandblasting, then cleaned off the spatter and etch primed.
I decided to smooth the welds, most have been filled by finger with fibre reinforced putty, the underneath (visible areas) have been wiped with a radiused spatula to create a nice smooth looking rounded joint, sanded several times  with spray putty in between, about 100 hours spent on this activity.
I wanted a warm silver, like slightly burnt chrome, I had always liked the Lamborgini colour Titanium, a PPG paint
The chassis was painted black again first, with De-Beers 2 pak, then De-beers Titanium in PPG color code 210600 then some coats of clear with 50% matting agent to give a satin finish.

Chassis before sanding back and top coating.

Chassis painted in PPG color Titanium Silver 210600.
Painted with De-Beers 2 Pak Paint.

Front Cross Member

Left Hand Front Suspension Mount.

View from the rear.

Temporary Separation

Thursday, 16th June 2011
Separated the body from the chassis, easily done, remove chassis bolts, doors, door mounting frame, lift from the back shift forward about 50mm, then lift.
I used Fergie again, made it easy for Di and I to manuvere the body and role the chassis out from underneath.

Body sitting on a pallet, now rests up the hoist so i can get the tractor in the shed.

Diff Finished, nearly

Saturday, 11th June 2011
After trying all sorts of cleaners and acids to refurb the alloy look of the casing, ( phosphoric acid did the best job, but sandblasting would have been better)  I decided on a different scheme, a Monochrome look of Black and Silver, so the drive line is now going to be Black.

Cleaned up the casting marks and painted Metalic Charcoal, too light, so then Metalic Black, The gloss level wasnt enough and the paint (Enamal) chipped to easily, so i bought a new spray gun and tried my hand at 2 pak. Its now just Gloss Black.

Metalic Charcoal, prior to Metalic Black, Prior to plain ol' Gloss Black

Parts Stripped and Ready for Paint

Monday, 30th May 2011
Stripped the VE Rear Cradle, cleaned all the parts ready for paint.
Rear knuckles were very difficult to disassemble, even with correct tools,
Particularly the removal of the backing plate requires the removal of the wheel flange,
The main bearing is a once only use, removing the flanges destroys the bearing inner. *noted in VE/G8 workshop manual. The assembly is so awkward in shape, its difficult to mount in press, so we remounted in the cradle and pressed out from the inside with a car jack.
Also the bushes were difficult to remove, needing some simple custom made pullers to remove, lathed up from some tubes to fit over the bush, then rods and nuts to pull the bush into the tube.

Naked Knuckles

Suspension Arms, Un-modified Front Knuckles on right

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

VE Commodore Rear Cradle

Thursday, 7th April 2011
The CR uses many VE Commodore rear suspension parts,
Lower Arms, Trailing Links, Tie Rod Arms, CV's, Knuckles, Diff.
My Rear cradle came from a 9000K HSV GTS rollover with 3.7:1 Ratio LSD Diff.
I wont be using the standard rear brakes, instead, AP Racing Calipers on DBA rotors.
Cradle as delivered
Fergie does all the hard work again

On the bench ready to be Stripped, Cleaned and Painted.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

On The Dolly

Saturday, 6th February 2011
Today i made a dolly for Cobbie so i can move her around, I'm in the process of cleaning out the shed so i can get a concrete floor put in.

Kit Pickup

Friday, 28th January 2011
The pickup of Cobra CR3415 took a bit of organizing, the body and chassis were ready in mid December 2010, I was in PNG working and Classic Revival was closing for Christmas before i returned.
It was re-planned for me to pick up on 10th January 2011 when CR returned to work, but i ended up in PNG again, so we organized it that I would fly back in to Sydney on the 28th, and my wife Diane, would drive up from Melbourne to meet at CR.
As it ended up, my plane was delayed, i missed the pickup time, Diane however was on time and took delivery of CR3514 with my son Thomas.

CR3514 on the trailer at Classic Revival in Sydney

Smooth travel all the way home to Tynong North in Melbourne, 850klms

Unloading was drama free, backed into the shed, picked up the body / chassis combo with Fergie, and drove the trailer out from underneath.


Wednesday, 20th October 2010
Today is the first official day of the Cobra build, i placed the order for CR3514.
The basic kit consists of chassis frame, body with doors, boot lid, bonnet pre hung.
The rest is up too me.
I also ordered from Classic Revival the Suspension Arm Kit which consists of Front Upper and Lower 'A' Arms, Rear Upper 'A' Arms and Ball Joints, also ordered the Shortened Half Shaft Axles.