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GTM Coupé Page 42

April 2010

With the weather being against me, I haven't progressed as far as I would have liked with the coupé.
One thing I did get on with was buying an intercom. The Autocom Easi-Plus is designed for use on a motorbike with the headphones attaching to the insides of the helmet, and being powered by a 9v battery.
First thing I did was make a 12V to 9V regulator using a TS7809 chip, a couple of Tantalum capacitors and a battery clip. This will allow the intercom to be powered by the car. I also made up a couple of leads, one 3.5mm jack to 2.5mm jack for my sat-nav, a 4pole 3.5mm jack to 2.5mm jack for my PMR (Private Mobile Radio) aka Walkie Talkie, and an existing 3.5mm jack lead for the IPod. All three units can be connected at once, but it would be normally just the one. Finally I got a set of Peltor ear defenders and fitted the headsets to it.

Autocom
Autocom Easi-Plus
Headphones
helmet headphones
9V regulator
12V to 9C regulator
Leads
Interface leads
defenders
Ear defenders

Finally a sunny day allowed quite a bit of work to be done on the Coupé.
I have been planning to paint the car for over a month now, so today, with a favourable weather forecast, I made a start. First thing to do was strip off everything from the body.
While I had the rear number plate off, I cut a hole behind it, hoping this will allow some of the hot air to vent out the sides.
With the parts off, it was time to sand the bodywork down, I started with some 320 paper on the random orbit sander, then some 320 sanding pads, used wet, in the places the sander couldn't reach. Then I washed the car down and waited for it to dry.
Once dry I masked up the remaining parts and rollered on a layer of undercoat.

Hole
Hole cut behind plate
sanded
bodywork sanded
masked
masked
primed
primed
primed
primed

Today a further layer of paint was added, the coverage seems to be quite good, so the car now needs a light sand, before some top coat can be added.

me masked up
All ready to paint
second coat
second coat applied

With the primer given a chance to harden, I spent a little time sanding the primer down, ready for the top coat. While I had the rear vent panels removed, I sanded them down, also, and gave them a coat of "tough black" paint.

primer sanded
primer sanded
black vents
vent panels

Started on the top coat, a nice Rochelle red. All I need to do now is wait seven hours to see the finished colour.

painting
painting
Rochelle red
Rochelle Red top coat
Rochelle red
Rochelle Red top coat
Rochelle red
Rochelle Red top coat

After a further 3 coats of paint, I was happy with the coverage and left it to harden before continuing.

second coat
second coat

While waiting for the paint to harden fully, I re connected the dash, which I had removed to freshen up, and add a indicator buzzer, along with making a mount for the intercom, this involved some interesting Yoga to connect the wires.

limbo
limbo

Next thing to do was to wet sand the body with 1200 then 1500 wet and dry, this left the paint dull but reasonably smooth. To shine it back up I gave the paint a mop with G3. This was then followed by Maguire's Deep Crystal Paint Cleaner, Deep Crystal polish, and finally Carnauba Wax.

half done
Half done

Once this was all done, it was a case of peeling off the masking tape, and refitting all the items removed.

paint done
completed

Final things to be fitted were the door mirrors, that I had painted black.
With the paintwork done, I spent a little time checking the alignment of the front wheels, and adding a little more toe-in to improve the straight line stability. Also I made some covers for the access holes in the central tunnel, and painted up some tread plates for the footwells.

Ready
Everything back on
cover plate
cover plate
tread plate
tread plate

I decided, at the last minute, to add some interior door panels, to the car.
I had planned to cover the edges of the door in trim, but in places the width isn't enough to allow it to fit. So using some perspex I fashioned a couple of panels. These will be bonded in place and a pull handle added later.

door panel
door panel

A busy day, sees the door panel painted, and with the aid of a heat gun, the panel was bent to shape, then bonded and bolted in place. Some edge trim around the hole and a pull handle sees it finished.

door panel
door panel

All the other jobs done, don't have much to show. The wheels were swapped to my black/red set, and while the wheels were off, the suspension arms, were topped up with grease. The car was given another polish and the front number plate was fitted. Finally the oil and filter was changed.

all done
all done

A last minute check reveals a split rear tie-rod bush, that needed changed last thing on Friday. But the car passes a quick test drive, all the luggage is prepared and we are ready for the off.

rear bush
rear bush

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