A Quiet Evening In.

I was in the middle of milling some Wolseley and Morris OHC tappet spanners ….

Tappet Spanner

…. when I remembered that I had a chocolate mould. On the face of it, that may sound an odd train of thought but there was a connection, albeit tenuous. Wolseley, under license, made Hispano Suiza aero engines in the 1st World War and later borrowed some aspects of the aero engine’s design for its motor cars – the last manifestations of which were the 4 and 6 cylinder OHC engines made by Morris before Lord Nuffield called a halt to their development. It was the early aviation side of things that prompted the image of my chocolate mould to float into my mind.

Chocolate mould

This rather splendid piece of work by the famous Parisienne company Letang Fils was given to me some years ago – in my Avro days – and I’d never thought to try it out. It was in a bit of a sorry state when I finally found it so a good polish and sterilization was essential (it looked like it may have originally been nickel-plated so I might restore that finish one day). By the time I’d finished messing about it was close to 9.00pm and I was short of some good quality chocolate to melt down for my experiments.

Slow Down 30

On my route into town I pass through a village which sports a reminder to motorists to keep to the speed limit. Often, half of the bulbs don’t work and I always think the resulting ‘SLO DO 3’ would be a suitable title for a science fiction novel; it’s the sort of thing I imagine might appeal to Walter Mitty.

melting chocolate

With 1/2 a bar of Green & Black’s dark chocolate melting in the bowl, I gave the mould a light coating of olive oil which hopefully would act as a release agent.

Filled mould

After filling the mould, a wait of about 15 minutes for things to firm up a bit before a quick trim with a knife tidied the edges and separated each piece. Following roughly an hour in the fridge, the point of a knife under a corner of each piece lifted the finished chocolates from the mould. Success!

Finished chocolate

And whilst I was doing all this, I realised that I’d got the drawing of the radius arm a bit wrong and the doubler which holds the bush at the front needed to be altered so that the load was carried more evenly along the length of the arm.

Radius arm 2

The ‘V’ shaped end of the doubler plate will work better than a straight drop from top to bottom – with any luck the boys and girls down at the laser-cutting works won’t have started on the job yet. And on the subject of axles and fixings, I should also draw up the plates for the front axle clamp bolts. Some Rileys use a plate for each pair of bolts but I favour a single plate for all four. It’s a bit more work but it make things a lot firmer and also easier for assembly.

Unless I’m distracted, I’ll sort that out one quiet evening in.


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