I leant over to pick up the end of an electric motor, got a purchase on the pulley and ‘twang!’ went my back. So I’m on light duties for the next couple of days; executive decisions, supervisory input, that sort of thing.

So that’s what I’ve been doing although I can be difficult when being supervised. I first addressed the proposed gearchange mechanism and because one of the original cross-beams in the Hillman chassis is slap bang in the wrong place, I’ve labelled it ‘Redundant Structure’ and got the boy to remove it – it didn’t take me long. I thought about it for a while and decided that because originally there were 5 cross-members in the chassis (one in effect being the solidly mounted engine) and following my alterations there are now 7, I could afford to lose one. Of course, it’s always the one that might have been most effective – it being a tube and so helping to resist torque longitudinally – but c’est la vie.

The new radiator mount goes in on Friday – I’ve booked up with our local blacksmith. I’ve also enlisted help to move the chassis around as I can hardly lift a packet of crisps at the moment. However, as I’ve got to keep ahead of the game, I’ve not been idle and this morning I’ve de-rusted and primed the bits which once riveted together, won’t see the light of day again. I’ve got a couple of holes to fill as well before the chassis goes for blasting and painting.

After an executive lunch, I decided to have a quick gander at the brakes. I got the boy to pull out one of the front hubs and take it apart so that I could do some preliminary measurements (I can’t trust the boy with a ruler) and get an idea of what’s going to be required for the hydraulic brake conversion. Happily, it turns out that the drums are 12″ diameter internally and I have half an idea that that might be a fairly common size. The brake shoe dimension is 11 7/8″ across, disengaged.

So what I propose to do in the first instance is find some 12″ hydraulic brake drums complete with hubs and/or, failing that, get the gen on brake pressures, weights and so forth and draw up my own backplates incorporating proprietary hydraulics to bolt on to the Hillman hubs. This latter might well be the easier path; I asked the boy for his thoughts but I’m not sure he’s grasped the concept entirely. I might take Counsel’s view before I make my move.

And in my executive capacity, I took the rest of the day orf. Splendid.


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