March 2008

Date Event

04/03/2008

Driving the fished car

The Black Cat is back home.  We left home at 8:40 this morning ,by taxi, for Newbury railways station and caught the 9:10a.m. to Taunton. For the first time in our lives we travelled first class and I must say I could get used to that.  Fast efficient clean travel with spacious leather seats complimentary tea or coffee and a newspaper. The journey made all the sweeter by the massive discount for booking in advance and paid for with our senior citizen travel tokens.  We enjoyed it while it lasted. The weather was fantastic bright and clear with a chill wind but never the less just what we had hoped for to bring the car home.  We arrived at Taunton on time just 1 hour and 28 minutes after we set off.

Chris was at the station to meet us and took us to the factory. Outside waiting for us , bathed in sunshine, was the Black Cat. Hood up and black bodywork gleaming, offset with bright chrome and matching wire wheels.  In my biased opinion, absolutely stunning.   

We adjourned to the office to complete the paperwork and a general chat over a welcome cup of coffee. Then it was outside again to demonstrate removal and fitting of the hood as well as take some photographs (for a project that will be announced later)

By this time it was approaching 12:30 p.m. and time to set off for home..  But first we had to work out how to activate or rather deactivate the immobiliser.  I must admit I have found this process frustrating but it's probably because I'm not used to doing it.  The engine, finally enabled, bursts in to life and we set off on the 100 mile journey home.

It took a couple of miles or so to get used to a strange new car but soon we were on the open road and able to relax. Back came all those happy memories of open air motoring. We had taken the hood down but left the side screens up this afforded us a little more protection which added to the enjoyment of only light traffic and a glorious sunny day.  We found out fairly soon that even at moderate speed the hood bag fills with air and blocks the view of the interior rear view mirror. Many owners, we know, have a strap which they fasten around the hood bag to prevent this.  Not having a strap to hand we had to be extra vigilant on dual carriage ways, when overtaking. We fixed the problem when we got home with a suitable length of black webbing.  Cruising at or just under the legal limit we were comfortably able to hold a conversation and were not unpleasantly buffeted by the wind. We were able to explore and enjoy the drive. At normal road speeds the steering was light and positive. The gearbox  and gear changed smooth and quiet. There was a slight whine from the differential but it was light and high pitched, did not increase with road speed and in fact was lost in the road noise above 50 mph. 

All too soon we were back home. The journey of some 2 hours was over. Excited, elated, hugely satisfied with the finished car we are still grinning from ear to ear 5 hours later.  We can't wait till Sunday when we will be out in the Black Cat again.

For the latest photographs click here

 

09/03/2008

 

Well, I've been out today and got it dirty and wet.!!  Like very body else despite some very careful sealing of the windscreen I still have some water ingress in heavy rain. Now that I've experienced driving with the hood up and in the rain I can appreciate the difficulty of trying to get the car waterproof. The geometry of the body work and the hood leave strategic gaps which would be difficult to fill if not impossible. For example at the front of the side screens particularly at the bottom.  By and large I only have minor leaks and I suspect no worse than on and original. So far I can put up with the leaks I have until such time as I have the time to investigate further.  Lets hope for a hot dry summer when it won't be a problem anyway.   Never the less a great day out and great fun to drive. 

 

Total Hours this month =

 

Total hours to date = 2155.0