With the lock down still in place, restrictions were easing for people movement, so I decided to take the Corsair for bit more of a leg stretch one evening, rather than the local within a mile of home movements. The intention was to film the journey of the Corsair up Zig Zag Hill and motoring along on the B3081 but I didn’t account for the (mobile phone) auto focus on a bug splat on the windscreen, so the trip up was mostly blurred. I tried again a few days later, with better lighting and getting the focus to stay trained on the road and got back various results ( I may post a video later). The brakes felt OK, no signs of locking up, though they were a little spongy and the handbrake was not as effective as before. Some adjustments will be required on the rear drum and hopefully improved the handbrake.
Minor work included a repair of the passenger side window winder, this time I applied more penetrating weld as per my drivers door window winder fix I did a while ago. Preparation and set up took the longest but had the glass runner arms re-welded to the winder mechanism and all seemed a lot stronger this time. I also tackled the broken bracket in the passenger door holding the window (glass) runner to the door internals. It was rusted through and the metal left was very thin, however with some very unattractive, splatter welds it was secured again. No photos, I wouldn’t want to upset the purists, but it does the job and is now hidden by the door card.
I now have all the parts required for the front suspension maintenance, which includes new strut inserts, top mounts, poly bushes and steering arm rebuild kits. I will embark on that task once the carport upgrade has been done.
Changeable weather for the month reduced options for driving the Corsair as I hoped to take it into work for a decent long run. However, the brake seizing problem was seemingly cured (weekend 10/11th) by replacing all the brake fluid in the system with new DOT4 fluid, my grown up helper assisted with pedal pumping and fluid top ups. Thinking about it, the fluid was last done 3 years ago and quite probably had ‘gone off’ with water absorption which reduced the fluid’s pressure tolerance. A 20 mile test drive around the lanes of Hindon to Tisbury was a good try out which didn’t reveal any problems.
Another bonus this month was my success at winning a hotly contested Ebay auction for a rear view mirror. Original, good condition mirrors for the Corsair and Mk1 Cortina are quite rare to find because the plastic becomes brittle, crumbles and the silver mirror backing often deteriorates just as per mine. Saturday morning (17th) I had a decent run out to Westmoors, 40+ mile round trip, in the Corsair and it was a good run with me chasing the traffic rather rather being stuck behind part time drivers and no problem with the brakes. Later, I fitted the mirror and what an improvement that was. Later drives with the new mirror in place was that it didn’t wobble as much as the previous one and I did have better general view as well.
A drive out one Thursday evening brought back the dreaded brake seizing issue again. it was brisk, spirited drive up Zig Zag hill an then along the back lanes towards Cashmoor and the ‘Gussages’. However, I had another event of slamming on the brakes was required after a near head on with a tractor. This may have upset things a bit with the brake system, because on the way home and going back down Zig Zag Hill I could the feel the pedal become more firm and the further I went on the steering vibrated more as the brakes seized on again. I just managed to get the car home without a forced stop. The next day I re-bled the system just to ensure it was air free and took it for another drive to Sturminster and Durweston then home anlong the A350. Again, after about 22 miles the brakes became hot and the Corsair became difficult to keep going. I pulled over about a mile from home and checked all the wheels for heat. The rear wheels were fine, but the front wheels were very hot, not just the discs but the rims too! I have ordered new brake discs and pads, as the current discs were rusty and pitted and could be binding therefore causing heat to build up and thus raising the brake fluid pressure in the system?
Plenty of driving has ensued for the month of September. A visit to the Breakfast meet at Haynes International Motor Museum on the 2nd, two trips to my place of work (54 mile round trips), a drive to Gillingham and onto Sturminster Newton and another trip to Salisbury has put on the miles and smiles.
Here is another video, this time with a former work colleague driving the Corsair back from his leaving do.
A couple of spare hours, and with my little helper to hand, was enough to get the accelerator rod mechanism cleaned up and back in. The small mount (circled in red) that fixes to the brake and clutch pedal mounting had completely seized solid. It was so solidily stuck that when I initially tried to press the ‘gas’ pedal it would flex the firewall/bulkhead rather than pivot in its mounting. It took a vice, several soaks of WD40 and a week to free off and enable the small mount to rotate around the rod, freely.
The rod was treated to a clean up by wire brush and two grades of wet and dry then a coating of sprayed on grease to keep things lubricated and clean-ish. It was the first time this piece of the car had ever been removed in 46 years, evidence being the over spray on the special rubber grommet on the firewall, which will need replacing.
Installation was reverse of the removal, just less of the cursing as the youngster was present. The heater proved to be equally tricky to get back in as it was quite heavy to lever upwards and be aligned with it’s mounting holes for the bolts to go in. Next step, will be the re-install of the clutch and brake pedals.