RJC Fury R1 Design Build Drive Gallery Video Contact Me Misc
Last page update was 12 Mar 2006

Fisher Fury Build Progress - January 2006

1st January


My schedule from last month still looks realistic.

Jobs To Do This Month

Sprocket Adaptor

Having struggled to get the sprocket off my engine, I went the whole hog and built myself a tool to get decent leverage on it. With this holding the sprocket in place and a 24" bar to drive the socket, it shifted easily.

With the sprocket off, I then trial fitted the sprocket adaptor. This provides a flat surface, to which the propshaft will bolt. This came from the The Kit Car Workshop  complete with a 3mm washer but, I can't see that the washer is required. Having spoken to Martin, it is shipped by default and is used on Fireblade engines.

The adaptor is about 2-3mm too deep to allow the locking washer to be fitted onto the splined section of the shaft. I'm going to have to get the raised, central part of the adaptor machined down on a lathe, to allow the locking washer to fit on the splines as intended.

2nd January

Today was a case of one step forward and two back.

Brake Pads

I cleaned the front disks with some Halfords brake cleaner and inserted the Lotus Elise Mintex 1144 pads. On first appearance, the calipers seemed to align perfectly without any washers to adjust the spacing but the pads would only fit in the left caliper if I loosened the caliper fixing bolts. Without the anti-squeal pads, they would fit in OK. It would appear that this caliper needs to be spaced out by less than 1mm. Where can you get a 12mm washer less than 1mm thick?

Cleaned the rear disks and inserted the standard Sierra brake pads (only 15.08 a set) into the rear left caliper. These calipers are floating so spacing is not going to be an issue. Put the rear left wheel on and all seemed fine. It was only having rolled the car back that I noticed the caliper handbrake lever was touching the inside of the wheel and had scored a line in the wheel lacquer. Bugger!

I'm going to have to fit some 10mm wheel spacers to get the required clearance. I'm sure this is my penalty for using 13" ET18 'front' wheels on the back of the car but, I wanted to be sure they would pass the SVA. The plan is to either keep them as spares (with slick tyres on) or to sell them on and fit 7" rims with 205 tyres to the rear. The braking system is so close to being complete but not quite there yet.

3rd January

Bought some 10mm wheel spacers from my local 'car accessory' shop. Popped into my friendly engineering workshop to see what could be done with the sprocket adaptor. It is a cast and hardened lump of metal and they were not keen to touch it, so it is going to have to go back to The Kit Car Workshop  to be modified.

The 10mm spacers seem to do the trick and all the caliper parts now clear the wheels.

Sprocket Adaptor Modifications

Having carefully checked and measured the sprocket adaptor, it is clear the inner front face is 2.2mm proud of the splines on the engine output shaft. In addition the locking washer (which must sit on the splines) is 0.8mm thick so I need to get 3.0mm removed from the inner face of the adaptor (circled in the diagram), in order for this to fit as intended. This has been sent back to The Kit Car Workshop  to be modified.

5th January

Question: Where can you get a 12mm washer less than 1mm thick?
Answer: You can't but, I found the thinnest (large) washer I could (1.0mm) and drilled it out to 12mm. This worked perfectly.

6th January

Booked the car in for a tow bar next week.

Borrowed an engine hoist from my work motor club, to trial fit the engine into the engine bay. Took the opportunity to clean out the garage one more time and to roll the car outside into the sunshine. I got some comments about my (temporary) MDF dash!

Engine Install

I'm aiming for the output shaft to be as central as possible and the sump gasket to be horizontal all the way round as this is how the engine normally sits in a bike and this is the line of the sump baffle. The target is to get the sump gasket about level with the bottom of the chassis rails.

Chris  fitted his engine at an angle but it was lower and more central than I can achieve (because my oil filter). He also fitted his engine leaning backwards slightly so that the higher rear ride height made the engine sit level. I'm not sure about this as it introduces another angle to the propshaft and the car will be accelerating under power, causing oil to go to the back of the engine anyway.

If the mounts are used as they are supplied (no spacers), the engine is going to sit very low and the oil filter is going to be the limiting factor in how close to being central, the engine output shaft can go. This is made worse by the fact my sandwich plate for the oil and temperature sensors push the oil filter out a further 25mm than normal. A plus point is that the centre of gravity will be slightly lower. A downside that I can see, is that changing the oil filter will involve an engine hoist :-(

Trial Engine Install - Attempt No. 1

I added some risers/spacers (33mm for left mount, none for right mount, 18mm for rear mount) to get the sump gasket aligned with the bottom of the chassis rails all the way round and in this position the oil filter is 3mm above the chassis supporting plate for the engine mount.

This means the engine can sit more centrally and I can change the oil filter, without using an engine hoist. This picture doesn't show it too well but, the oil filter is about 3mm above the chassis mounting plate and overlapping by about 23mm. This means the engine can go more to the left (engine output shaft is more central) by about 25mm. The limiting factor as to how central it can now go is the oil cooler pipe on the engine.

The downside of this positioning is that the rear engine mount is too high and won't sit nicely on the rear chassis rail. I may have to get this modified :-(

This is the resulting view down the transmission tunnel, which looks pretty good. The propshaft will not hit anything and the propshaft angle is fairly small.

In this position, the sump gasket aligns with the bottom of the chassis rails all the way round. This gives me 66mm (at lowest point) ground clearance. I don't know what is normal or expected though. Is this good or bad?

Having got some feedback from Martin, it is likely that likely that the thermostat housing and top water pipes will hit the bonnet with the engine in this position :-(

7th January

Bleeding The Brakes

Richard  is coming round today lend me his Eezibleed tool and help me bleed the brakes. I've never bled brakes before so I've got no idea where to start. There are some useful instructions on the Gunson web site .

Richard arrived and we set about the task. The Eezibleed system uses the air pressure from one of the tyres to push brake fluid into the reservoir, through the pipes and out through the bleed nipples. We started with the rear calipers which had be removed from their sliders and turned upside down. We did the rears, then the fronts, then repeated this till each caliper had been done three times.

After each cycle the pedal feel improved. It's now pretty firm but I think we could get a little bit more air out once things have bedded down a bit. I'm going to leave them alone until after I've run the car on an airfield.

Propshaft Adaptor

I only posted this to Martin on the 3rd but, it came back today modified to my specifications. The locking washer can now sit on the splines, meaning the nut can't vibrate loose. The nut needs to be torqued up to 50lb-ft so I'm going to need to fabricate another quick tool to allow me to do this.

The nut is actually recessed at the rear to go over the splines and ensure the adaptor is compressed onto the shaft but, it the adaptor was machined such that the washer only just sits on the splines and would still be compressed by a plain nut.

Trial Engine Install - Attempt No. 2

Having discussed the engine install with Richard , the engine installation looked a little more resolved. Martin had also suggested a ride height which proved my suspension set up was far too low, so I wound up the front shocks to raise the front of the car more.

Firstly, the diff sits slightly to the right of the transmission tunnel. This means that having the engine output shaft further over to the right of the car is not going to be a problem and is actually the more direct line to take. It also ensures the propshaft is clear of the handbrake mechanism.

I then looked at the situation using no spacers/risers on the engine mounts. This means that the end of the oil filter is about 3mm away from the chassis rail and is not going to be easily accessible. Another more immediate problem is that my brake fluid reservoir is in the way of the right engine mount, so I temporarily moved it and tie-wrapped it out of the way. I can worry about it later.

With no spacers, the engine simply leans over far to much to the left. The right engine mount really needs to allow this side of the engine to be about 20mm lower than it is, to get the engine level. Obviously, I can't do anything about this so I'm going to have to adjust the other side with spacers.

I started with an 18mm spacer under the left engine mount. This results in an engine which is pretty much level front to rear.

Looking at the sump from the front it is close enough to being level.

And this is the view up the tunnel. The propshaft adaptor is over to the right but there is still a nice straight line and no chance of the propshaft fouling anything.

With no spacer on the rear mount it sits as intended.

I've reached a solution that I'm current happy with. I just need to get the ride height checked but with the front suspension raised, there is currently 70mm under the lowest point of the sump.

In order to get my custom 4-2-1 manifold to fit, the gap from the back edge of the rear engine exhaust output to the front of the silencer has to be more than 44cm. In my install it is currently 45cm.

7th January

Engine Mount Spacer

From a large lump (20mm x 50mm x 150mm) of aluminum I had lying around, I cut off a 40mm length and drilled a 10mm hole through the centre. This is my spacer for the left engine mount.

8th January

Drilled the holes in the chassis for the engine mounts. The hole in the plate for the left mount is inconveniently close to the chassis rail underneath it. The rear mount is also in an awkward place because of the other chassis rails. This meant that I had to put one bolt through horizontally and one through vertically.

9th January

Finished fixing the brake pipes. Installed the engine and bolted the mounts onto the chassis. Lots of tidying up jobs to do now before the car goes off to the manifold fabricators.

12th January

Suffolk Towbars came to my work site and fitted a Witter tow bar to my Mazda6 estate. I'm glad I didn't buy one and try to fit it myself. It took them nearly three hours to fit it.

Arranged a trailer and some straps to get the car transported next week.

13th January

Spent a bit of time revisiting my cooling system design, updating it and looking at possible parts suppliers.

14th January

Prepared the car for it's trip on Monday. This involved removing the radiator, fuel tank (temporarily strapped in place) and mock dash.

I also remounted the brake fluid reservoir on the other side of the steering column so that it isn't in the way of the engine mounts.

16th January

Picked up my trailer this morning. I'd forgotten I needed a license plate to go on it and you can't get one made up without the ownership documents (which I didn't have). Fortunately, my rear number plate is screwed onto the boot of the car and not stuck on, so I took it off the car and put it on the trailer. Towing a trailer that is wider than the car is not an enjoyable experience. Reversing is also a challenge.

I'd assumed that it might be damp and had wrapped the car in plastic sheeting. Unfortunately, it was raining quite hard today, so I put the car on the trailer and wrapped it up in a car cover, in an attempt to keep it completely dry. No such luck. Nothing like this stays still above 25mph and it took several attempts and many roof straps before I could keep it in place to withstand 50mph and the required journey. Not an enjoyable experience.

I'd also seriously underestimated just how remote this place was and the progress that I would make. What I thought was a 45 minute journey, took over twice that. I finally arrived and unloaded the car. The plastic sheet and car cover had done it's job and only the rear wheels showed any sign of dampness.

I'd printed off the exhaust specification Richard  put on his web site and a few pictures, showing how the Fury installation differed from that of the (at least) two Strikers, this company had done before. The only query seemed where the front of the side pod sits. With the steering on full lock, there is not a huge distance between the tyre and the front of the footwell (~45cm). It's difficult to be prescriptive about the manifold location when the Fury bodywork location is subjective.

I should hopefully get be able to pick the car up in about two weeks time. It would have been two days, had they not been so busy and had some urgent race team jobs in. That's two weeks in which to finish off the ensuite bathroom.

21st January

Made a 40mm diameter hole in the fuel tank for the fuel level sender. Bent the float rod into a series of complex curves, so that the float sits 5mm above the tank floor when empty and is a few millimetres from the top when full.

Fabricated a mount for the fuel pump and fuel filter. Using the rubber mounts, this flaps about far too much due to the weight of the fuel pump. I'm going to have to add a third rubber mount to ensure it doesn't move quite so much.

22st January

Sorted out a trailer to pick up my car and also bought a rear number plate for the trailer.

26th January

I've decided on the final colour scheme for my bodywork. It's going to use the colours from the Ford GT with the same white stripes. The colour is called 'Midnight Blue' and is a clear coat metallic. I'm just going to be using a coloured gel coat initially with vinyl white stripes and logos.

If you take off the roof, then there is also some similarity in shape with the Fury. The other interesting comparison is that in terms of performance, my Fury should be quicker to 100mph (official figures for the GT are 0-60mph in 3.8s and 0-100mph in 8.7s). After that, wind resistance is the limiting factor and 550bhp and 500ft/lb of torque has its uses :-) Oh, how I'd like to own both of them.

A friend building an R1 Striker has also come across the issue of engine installation/location and the take-off plate for the oil temperature and pressure sensors, causing the oil filter to foul the chassis. The biggest challenge I had in getting the engine to sit nicely in the car is that of getting the oil filter to not foul the chassis rails. In retrospect, I should have gone for a solution using a remote oil filter. Since I've had to add a take-off plate for the oil temperature and pressure sensors, these solutions could had been combined into one take-off plate and one remote oil filter plate and things would have been so much easier. The engine position would be better and access to the oil filter would be easier. If you learn one thing from this web site about installing an R1 engine in a Fury, then let it be this.

27th January

Picked up the car from Competition Fabrications, who have made up my exhaust manifold. They made a very good job of it and were very careful to ensure the 4-2-1 part would sit well within the side pod.

I hate towing a car on a trailer. At least it didn't rain this time though.

28th January

Started looking at making a horseshoe bracket to go inside the fuel tank. Also started to look at fitting the radiator in its new position (lower down). I noticed that a few spots of rust had appeared following the round trip up to get the manifold fitted. The front disks also have a fine dusting of rust on them, which should disappear on first proper usage. All in all, it survived the trip pretty well though.

29th January

Made a couple of brackets to go inside the tank and act as clamps for the fuel sender to bolt through to. I made these from some 10 x 10 x 75mm aluminium, bent round to allow three holes to be drilled, which match half of the holes on the sender. I then tapped these to a 6mm thread. There are two of these.

Fitting this is not as simple as it looks. I started with a short bolt underneath the sender, to hold each clamp in place. I then put the sender in and used some long 6mm bolts in the other four holes (this time going through the sender) and these held the clamps in place whilst I removed the two short bolts underneath the sender. I then replaced the long bolts with short ones. I used 6mm holes and bolts but the holes in the sender are slightly smaller than 6mm and 5mm bolts would have been a better choice. In the picture, you can see that I've left one bolt loose as I need to mount an earth wire onto it.

RJC Fury R1 Design Build Drive Gallery Video Contact Me Misc
Copyright © Robert Collingridge 2004