Project EXI

The building of a Marlin 5EXi kit car, using a Seat Leon 1.8T 20v Donor

Mar 06 2011

Modifying the roll cage mounting holes, adjusting the instrument mounting plate

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Saturday afternoon was spent correcting the manufacturing error in the roll cage. A new hole was neded 35mm down from the hole on the both front uprights of the roll cage. First it was marked, center punched. Then progressivly drilled 3mm,5mm,6mm,8mm, 10mm then using a step drill taken upto 16mm. Progressivly as it is hard to drill a hole on a round bar.
Once completed, the steel insert were mounted, and welded in place.
The weld was then taken flat, so mounting a bolt through the insert and onto the plates on the chassis would provide more larger flatter area than the marlin fitted insert.
A quick coat of black hammerite and the job was completed.

I soldered up the ignition wires, and lengthened the wires for the indicator stalk, there were a bit short especially if the steering wheel was extended closer to the driver, these are now soldered, heatshrunk, and wrapped in PVC tape as a bundle.

I replaced the copper washer for the heater matrix bleed points with fiber washers, and fired the engine up. Checking all four bleeds points as the coolant heated up. Raditor thermosat was gradually increased, so I could check it was kicking in at the right point, 20C,40C 60C and 80C, this matched the water temp gauge. So it looks like the refil of coolant is going well. Thankfully there were no leaks on the tunnel tube tees or the matrix bleed points with the fiber washers.

I removed some more fiberglass from the bashboard instrument hump to make the instrument sit more vertically when viewd from the drivers seat. This means that I can now fit and remove the instrument assmebly in one go, so I think I will fiber fill the metal dash panel in place once is complete. There should be enough room to reach the rear of the cluster and loosen the dial fixing by hand I can then service the instrument if I ever need to.

I refitted the side panels in place and started mounting the over latch hinges that connected the rear and front sections to the side panels. The hinges are too big for the hole left in the body panel, so I have had to remove some material and match the holes wider. They also dont line up as expected, so by removing fiberglass and gel coat I can line them up better which asthectically is more pleasing on the eye.

All in all a good weekend moving jobs forward,

Im starting to think about the IVA


Posted by Steve | Permanent link | File under: structual

Feb 28 2011

Ignition Barrel wiring

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Found the problem with the ignition switch, I had #15 and #75 round the wrong way,
#15 is a switched live that is on from stage 1 and starting, with these round the wrong way, the ECU and fuel pumps are turned off, during the starting phase, not good, no spark no fuel.
I have decided to put all the vehicle electrical circuits onto barrel #15, so wipers, horn headlights etc will work when the key is turned and during the starting phase.

I now have to fix these connections permanently with some solder and heat shrink. I am also now using the special ignition barrel connector instead of using blade terminals, this will make removing and fitting the connections easier, as fitting can only happen one way.


Posted by Steve | Permanent link | File under: electrical

Feb 27 2011

Heater matrix hoses fitted

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Fitted the new 90 degree hoses to the heater matrix, and all seems well. I have a few small leaks of coolant on the screw and copper washer, should be able to resolve that with a little sealant putty or clean up, may have some debris on the washer.


Refitted the electrical connections to the ingition barrel, but it is not wroking properly, the starter motor wont engage, when they key is turn fully on, I do have an idea as to what the problem is, will invetigate this tonight to see if it cures the problem. I think #30 and #15 connections are swapped.

Filled the system with coolant, and begun removing air locks, radiator is not getting hot, so a serious air lock seems present. With warming the water and letting it cool, these should resolve themselves in time.


Posted by Steve | Permanent link | File under: heating and cooling

Feb 25 2011

Heater matrix silicon hoses

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It been a while in a diary update and work ont he 5EXi, as I had flu and been off work for just over a week. That has now burnt its way out, so have been able to get on with a few jobs on the build.

Moved the heater matric up, to allow more clearance for a clutch footrest.
This meant having to change the hose connections for it, I bought 4 90degree 15mm bends from Viper performance, as Viper 180 degree bend have faulty leg lengths 1" long instead of 4" long.

The modified seat frames mounts are now fully welded and painted in black.


Posted by Steve | Permanent link | File under: heating and cooling

Feb 06 2011

Steering column, steering wheel and pedals finally resolved

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I have finally managed to get the steering wheel, seat, and pedals into a suitable and comfortable position. I had to modify the rear steering column bracket so the brake blance bar doesnt hit the collapsable bracket on the column.
The pedal box is now back to original postion, which also meant making up some aluminium plates to cover the other holes for the clutch and brake cylinders that were made.

I orignally made a plate to fix the accelerator to the side of the pedal box, this had to moved down slightly, to allow the electrical connection on the top of the accelerator, this also meant my side panel expansion needed to be changed. So I removed this and made it full length, to accomodate the additional width of the fly by accelartor.

The side panel has been rivetted and PU glued in place.

I have a mountney 300mm steering wheel and have have figured out how to connect the horn button to the rotating steering interface on the orignal column.

My next step is to clean up the side panel expansion, and refit the brake and clutch cylinders.


Posted by Steve | Permanent link

Jan 30 2011

Steering column mounts need another change

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Been in contact with Marlin about the proposed change to the steering column mounts. There is no problem with doing this change.

Looking into this a little deeper it may be possible to extend the rearmost mounting bracket with out changing the steering column mount.
A small bracket the same size as the original bracket can be welded onto the front, this should give the additional 30mm or so of space to allow the steering column to be fitted.

I need to remove the pedal box (again) and move the accelerator pedal down a little, so the 6 way electrical connection can be made.
Removing the pedal box will also allow for an aluminium backing plate to be made to cover the holes in the front bulkhead that were made when I moved the pedal box down.


Posted by Steve | Permanent link

Jan 23 2011

Steering column not in line with seat

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Had some more free time in the garage on Sunday spent the morning working out how best to align the steering column with the seat. It is a really noticeable 35mm too far to the left, I think the solution is to move the driver seat closer to the tunnel, by 20mm and move the steering column mount 15mm right. With this setup I wont have to move the pedal box.

Frank managed to mount the new steering wheel onto the quick release boss, by machining up a neat little aluminium adaptor plate.

I have to remove the current steering column brackets, in such a way too re-use them and move them to the right slightly.


Posted by Steve | Permanent link

Jan 16 2011

Heater Matrix pipework

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Spent sunday morning connecting the heater matrix to the stainless coolant pipe tees.
Fitted the heater control valve, and billet aluminium bleed valve.
Have order some pipe formers from car builder solution to see if I can make some of the radius of the bends a bit tighter. If I can then I wont have to cross the pipes over the heater matrix. I order 4 in total.
I have yet to re connect the fuel pipes, but this should be a short task..
I also ordered a steering wheel from CBS. For now I have gone from a 300 brushed aluminium mountny steering wheel, we a quick release hub.
I will need to make a steering wheel adpater plate, and figure out how to connect the horn button to the horn wiring, while still maintaing a removal steering wheel. Think a phono plug will do the the job, as all it needs to do is activate a relay. I made my twon air horns relay activated as these can draw a fair bit of current.


Posted by Steve | Permanent link | File under: heating and cooling

Jan 03 2011

I need to add a Heater Matrix

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Its been a while since I have managed to find time to get into the garage, what with Christmas and new year etc.
I have taken out the two stainless steel pipes from the tunnels, so that some Tee pieces can be welded on, to provide a feed for the heater matrix so I can demist the windscreen. Removal of the pipes was fairly simple, first drain the coolant into a bucket, remove the intercooler and raditor supporting A frame, then slide the two pipes out from the front.

The two 10cm long 15mm diameter pipes have been welded on. Just need to clean up the stainless weld a little and re fit them.
At the same time as welding the Tee I also got some weld spots put on the end of the stainless pipes, this should allow the silicon hoses and hose clips something extra to bite onto, to prevent a pipe blow off.

Next job is to re assemble the pipes and coolant system.


Posted by Steve | Permanent link

Dec 13 2010

Fuse board relocated

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I have completed the move of the fuse board to the front left 1/4 panel. And all circuits seem to work as before.
This now gives me sufficent space to add the heater matrix and fan to the underside of the dashboard.
Next job is to move the Horn and fuel pump, and drain the coolant from the system.


Posted by Steve | Permanent link | File under: electrical
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