Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

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Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by MattorMatty » Tue Feb 23, 2016 8:15 pm

Right guys, it's about time I start a thread about my Singer Chamois Sport called Clive the source of all my pain, drained bank account and general disturbance to the neighbours with the noise of power tools. If you can remember my Sport engine lid restoration thread a couple of years ago in the Bodywork section you’ll remember how rotten that was … (For those who haven’t read it Click here) now imagine that level of rot spread over entire car and you’ve got Clive.

A little backstory to begin with, I first heard about this Imp a few years ago through my Dad; apparently one of his work colleagues had a bike powered Imp that was used to hoon around the fields. Fast forward a couple of years to the 15th September 2013 and I was buying all this guys Imp spares; engine, doors, that engine lid, a set of Dunlop D1 wheels and so on and that was my first glance of Clive all wrapped up in his tarpaulin blanket. So if filling an already full garage with Imp spares wasn't enough so the obvious thing to do is to buy another Imp!

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Fast forward to 21st October 2014 and I’m now looking at Clive being uncovered for the first time in years sandwiched between a tractor and a kit car body. First thoughts ‘Yep definitely an Imp’. Rust bubbling underneath filler underneath layer and layer of paint, plates welded over rust, appears to be the car for me as making my life hard seems to be my priority. I’d already ran the reg number through the DVLA computer to confirm it is a Singer Chamois but here is where I took an educated guess; in the box of bits I got the previous year was a 100 mph binnacle and a servo so is Clive a Sport?! To confirm this the bonnet needed opening to reveal the chassis plate and obviously the bonnet wouldn’t open! The cable wouldn’t budge an gnats do-da and the car was parked too close to the wall to gain access to the hornbox to do it manually. So with my gambling hat on a deal was struck with the removal of a few parts namely the bike engine and me and Dad came back on the 9th January 2015 trailer in tow to bring Clive home.

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So with Clive safely tucked up in the garage at home after being rather unceremoniously pushed off the trailer, first job get that bonnet off! And bang there’s the money shot and a lovely B792 chassis number. So Clive is a Singer Chamois Sport lets have a closer look at what I’ve let myself into here.

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From a half mile away looking through a kaleidoscope whilst being suspended upside down he doesn’t like ‘too’ bad but up close it’s a different story. Paint peeling off, a plastic sunroof, evidence of a large amount of filler and those arches … words can not describe those arches, well actually they can basically they are fiberglass skins filled for filler so each one weighs a good couple of kilos.

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A large chunk of the trim missing, when I say large chunk I mean virtually all of it! No exterior trim apart from 2 of the sport badges, no interior trim apart from the previous mention binnacle and the dash crash pads badly cracked and covered in red overspray. And currently what’s called an interior are a pair of some Fords seats … comfy, stained and not really fitting into my idea for the car. An array of switches/buttons and gauges, a rear cage which after a few modifications may end up in my other Imp - EXF if Mr Insurance Man lets me.

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So what the plan with Clive then? Well firstly and most importantly get the car solid again so a weldathon session ahead and everybody loves a weldathon thread … The final plan is to return the car back to standard-ish form, basically standard looking from a distance or at a quick glance but more you look the more subtle tweaks you’ll spot so he’ll run on standard steels but with a disc brake conversion hiding behind the front wheels, an alternator that looks like a dynamo, the closest modern shade to the original 156 - Claret Metallic paint for ease of touching up in the future as I’ve learnt my lesson from EXF, as I got the correct colour mixed up but ran out of paint for the bonnet and engine lid so went back and ordered some more, turns out a couple of the pigments used in that colour was obsolete and they used the last of their stock in my last order. I found no other place that had the paint info to be able to mix the paint, so had an already sprayed part colour matched but it's not a 100% match. USB ports to charge my phone/sat-nav/camera, most likely twin SU’s instead of twin Strombergs and a few other little tweaks.

So better get started on the big stripdown, first out was them Fords seats just to make room inside to work as they were as wide as you can squeeze into an Imp, quickly followed by the ‘dashboard’. To be honest it didn’t take long to strip the car down to a rolling shell; gearbox, gear linkage, petrol tank, lights, a few pipes and that was it.

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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by jetmech » Tue Feb 23, 2016 9:18 pm

That looks like a great project and if your other car is anything to go by, it's in safe hands. I look forward to following your progress.
I also look forward to starting my own restoration of a Super Imp, but that is unlikely to get under way until later this year. I'm still building the garage! :)

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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by MattorMatty » Thu Feb 25, 2016 7:02 pm

Thanks Simon :) Tip for building a garage build it bigger than you need as it amazing how quickly you can fill it up. :lol:

Which just left a very rotten shell sitting in the garage. Better get started then. I first started in some little areas of rot to keep me occupied whilst I saved up/bought the bigger bits I needed ie. floor panels, outers sills and the parts to make a rotisserie. Up first was the area around the rear lights which had a bit too much fresh air than ideal once all the filler and fiberglass was removed.

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Slighty copying Brians (Cov-Climax) idea in making a small press tool for the light recesses the offside went well being the better side. The nearside the pressed line isn’t crisp enough as I had to make a larger repair panel so I'll come back to this later and redo but for the time being one less hole to look at.

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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by The Nun » Thu Feb 25, 2016 7:59 pm

If its a Chamois Sport then its well worth doing no matter how bad it is and things always get worst before they get better, the all important stainless trim strip hole is still in the return on the rear wing too I noticed. :wink:
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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by ImpManiac » Sat Feb 27, 2016 1:02 am

That looks like a cool project, Matt. I'm looking forward to following your progress on it. :D You've done some great work on it already.

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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by The Nun » Sat Feb 27, 2016 9:26 am

Interesting to see the work youre doing and undertaking, its looks to be no mean task too it will be quite an achievement to get it back on the road again and good to see you giving it a go.

I noted you have a red Sport engine lid in the back of the garage, was that the original one for the car? I see its an H registration too? and your car is a binnacle dash? if so the car must be one of the last Sports of that type?

Also I did wonder the reason you not using the Sport lid instead of the standard one, damaged? you could find it pays to use the actual panel you want to fit at the end as you do the repairs as the lids/doors etc can be different sizes, enough to make the gaps uneven anyway.

Modern car panels today invariably fit spot on first time and require very little in the way of adjust, they are all basically the same to within a 0.5mm or whatever, the IMP panels vary quite a lot, you can be lucky and another door for example will fit first time and others look like theyve come off another vehicle almost by todays standards.
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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by MattorMatty » Sat Feb 27, 2016 6:35 pm

Thanks IM :)

Peter, yeah that red Sport lid is the original to the car and the one I repaired and fitted to my brown Imp - EXF, to be honest its not good enough to go on this car so I'll get a good standard and convert to Sport if I don't track down a decent Sport one. The doors arent original either as I got the orignal ones in my job lot of parts, as they had stood outside of 10 years the door skins just fell off. Even I wouldn't have attempted to save them :lol: The doors that came on the car don't exactly fit but there is a little rot in the corners (sounds about right) so I've got to take the grinder and welder to them so I can adjusted them once I've got the sills and front / rear wings all done. This thread is a little behind my actually progress at the moment, I've just finished putting in the new nearside floor and sill on and the door went back on for that even with the swage lines all lined up and outer sill as high as it could go the gap along the bottom is a little large so I'll need to add a little to the door later on to close it up.

Well spotted on the H reg, Clive was registered on the 8 Jan 1970 even though it is a Rootes car its number is 2301. All the Lucas parts that came off the car ie starter, dynamo, distributor all had a early 1968 date stamps. So maybe the car sat in a showroom for a while?

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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by MattorMatty » Sun Mar 06, 2016 4:20 pm

Talking of holes I’ve got a large one in the roof. Someone has fitted a “lovely” sunroof to Clive in the past, seeing as I'm not a fan of sunroofs and the rubber seals are either missing or perished on it, I think it’s best to remove it and weld the hole up.

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So sunroof out and it’s noticeable now it’s out that when it was fitted and the two halves of the sunroof were screwed together it has pulled the two front corners of the roof down out of it’s natural curve, a bit of hammer and dolly action later it’s slightly better but will still need a skim of filler to get it anywhere near smooth. I’d joddled the edge of the hole so the repair section will sit flush and then very carefully welded in taking time to let the metal cool down before the next weld so long in fact it took me two days to do.

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I plan on having a go at lead loading this repair when I get around to doing prep before paint to give in some extra strength and hopefully prevent the filler needed from cracking from any vibrations.
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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by The Nun » Sun Mar 06, 2016 5:18 pm

You need a spot welder and long arms, the welder not you, and just go at so they eventually join up into a seam weld, then no risk of distortion.
Even the pro body shops hate sorting the roof out as they say its easier to fit a whole panel from another car if its not to show afterwards?
Be interesting to see how you get on with it, no easy task indeed.

You could cut the hole bigger and fit a full sized Wesbasto fabric retracting sunroof, they do look much more in keeping with the period of the car, solves a problem for you on the metal bashing.
Some members do have one, think Grahame Pearson has?

Or fit a vinyl roof covering instead of paint perhaps?

Agreed the glass panel things dont look too good and are a bit of a halfway house between nothing and a proper job.
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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by ImpManiac » Sun Mar 06, 2016 9:59 pm

You've done a grand job there, Matt. :D It's not easy to get a sunroof infill right but you look to have done as good a job as anyone.

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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by Grahame59 » Mon Mar 07, 2016 8:23 am

The Nun wrote:You could cut the hole bigger and fit a full sized Wesbasto fabric retracting sunroof, they do look much more in keeping with the period of the car, solves a problem for you on the metal bashing.
Some members do have one, think Grahame Pearson has?
I certainly do! I love it – and so does Andrew Webb's daughter, Emilie, seen here in the queue for the Transporter Bridge, Imp 2015.
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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by MattorMatty » Tue Mar 08, 2016 8:44 pm

Thanks Peter, Paul and Grahame.

I'm hoping after a bit of lead loading I can I get the two front corners of the hole back into the rough shape so only a thin skin of filler is needed. Time will tell. Wesbasto is certainly a good Plan B as the car is just going to be a summer use only when finished so would be perfect. Plan C track down a usable roof skin. Plan D make the car a convertible :lol:
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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by MattorMatty » Tue Mar 08, 2016 9:30 pm

Turning my attention to the rear offside corner, it appears to have something missing.

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The wheel arch extension had been cut off and then the wheel arch and the bottom of the chassis leg had been welded together. So with the two panels carefully separated a new panel is needed. In true Blue Peter fashion "Here's one I made earlier"

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The inside of the chassis leg was cleaned out and given a good coating of zinc primer whilst I had easier access and then the panel was welded in place.

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Whilst I was in the area with the welder and angle grinder nice and warm better have a look at this patch-fest of the lower rear wing.

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Removing the lower outer wing to reveal the fully picture of the inner.

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MMM expanding foam which does burn nicely when you cut through it with a slitting disc and you can guess that all the patches on the inner had been welded over the rotten original metal. I got a bit carried away and didnt get any photos until I had finished.

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That looks slightly better

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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by The Nun » Tue Mar 08, 2016 9:40 pm

Certainly does, just keep ploding on bit by bit, you seem to be getting no where fast then all of a sudden the end is in sight, youll know youre there when youre looking for the next piece of rust to fix and cant find any :D
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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by ImpManiac » Wed Mar 09, 2016 12:14 pm

Sterling work, Matt. The car is coming along really nicely. :D

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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by MattorMatty » Thu Apr 07, 2016 7:46 pm

Thanks Peter and Paul, certainly looking forward to the day when all the welding is complete! A couple of years away from that though.

Slight delay in updating the thread as I've been busy working on EXF and my daily (309 GTI - made in the Ryton factory so a nice family connection there) plus helping a few of my friends on their cars.

We are now up to October last year where I had purchased a pair club floor panels, outer sills and the parts to make a rotisserie. Let the fun begin!
I welded in a load of bracing to stop the shell from moving as large chunks of it were about to be removed A-B across the door gaps with a vertical bar that picked up the inner sill, A-A and B-B had a vertical bar that picked up the gear linkage / central tunnel and diagonal B-C. With the bracing in the seat boxes can come out, ideal I would have liked to kept them to give a little more support for the shell but both of them needed work which would be easier to do on the bench.

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Mmm crusty floor.

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How common is it to have a crack around the captive nut on the seat boxes? As EXF had them as well, the ends of the crack got drilled and then welded up.

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A new front corner was welded on to the passenger side

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It was time for Clive to meet the rotisserie! I used a pair of engine stand that had been extended and some angle to connect the bottom together. Was quite an interesting experience to get Clive up in the air and all bolted up as I did it by myself and managed to blow a seal in the trolley jack half way through but he got safely up and all bolted up.

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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by The Nun » Thu Apr 07, 2016 8:25 pm

Ive seen a couple of IMPs where the seat fixings have cracked due to fatiqued metal and probably fattyqued drivers too, as Tom Jones said its not unusual. :?
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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by ImpManiac » Thu Apr 07, 2016 10:10 pm

Yep. Cracks in seat pans are not unusual, to paraphrase Mr. Jones. :?

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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by MattorMatty » Sun May 15, 2016 7:16 pm

Now the Imp is up in the air better have a look at the reason its up there, the floor and sills.

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Ahh that doesn't look too promising, a few patches on the floor and a rather dented replacement sill which has been plated straight to the floor. And feeling from inside the car between the inner sill and the floor the nearside seems the better side as it appears I have 'some' heater sill present, so lets start on that side.

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Yep that's going to need some new metal.
Well maybe the A-post area will be better.

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Ahhh! Where did I leave my welder.

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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by ImpManiac » Sun May 15, 2016 9:05 pm

Cutting out the rot is satisfying and scary at the same time! :shock: Needs to be done, though. :wink:

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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by tiker » Mon May 16, 2016 7:10 am

Have you cut the bottom of the a post out are was it not there !!
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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by MattorMatty » Tue May 17, 2016 9:24 pm

Cutting out the rot is quite satisfying Paul, cutting out the plates over the rot isn't though as you got to go careful on that small chance that the original metal beneath is usable.
The only thing I have done to the A-post in that photo is cut off the plate Gary, the bottom is simply missing and this is the good side! It shows how bad this car is.

So this side need a new outer and heater sill, new floor and only localised repairs to the inner sill. Better get cracking then.
So out came the remains of the heater sill combination of drilling out the spot weld where I could get the drill into and grinding them out where I couldn't and the heater hose still had coolant in it which made a nice mess even though they haven't been used for years. With all that lot out of the way I could see the inner sill only needed a new section of lip and a few holes welding up when I went 'a bit too far' when drilling out the spot welds on the seat base.

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Cut out the old rusty lip and made a new one, using a hammer to stretch the metal to create the slight curve on the front end.

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The new one is a slight improvement over the old one.

Moving on to the A-Post, I cut out some of the front wing to gain access to all of it.

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A big thanks to Simon - impstress2003 for posting a load of photos of when he repaired his Imp which showed what the area should look like :D

So after some careful cutting and drilling out some spot welds which were a pain to find in the badly pitted metal, I could get back to some solid metal. At least the door bolt box/cage was in good condition so at least I didn't have to make that part :lol: only a coat of kurust needed. I trailed fit the heater and outer sill for a mojo boost.

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After plenty of C.A.D (Cardboard Aided Design) and some bending and cutting ...

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and then some more bending and cutting. Hopefully we've got some bits of metal that will fit and resemble a A-post.

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Old vs New

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And here's the final A-post looking slightly better than when I found it, looking at the time stamps on the photos it took me 3 weeks to do all the work in this post ... yeah I'm not the quickest worker.

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Last edited by MattorMatty on Tue Jun 07, 2016 8:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by tiker » Wed May 18, 2016 8:23 am

Nice work but good work take's time some bits are very fiddly all those curves and bends get one wrong and the next pieces don't fit keep going your doing great
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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by ImpManiac » Wed May 18, 2016 1:20 pm

^^ What Gary said. You're doing a great job! :D

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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by MattorMatty » Tue Jun 07, 2016 8:45 pm

Thanks Gary and Paul, I do have to remind myself don't rush and take your time.

Now with a solid inner sill and A-post I better have a go at connecting the two together as at the moment only the bracing I put in is holding the front half of the inner sill in the correct place.
First up I made the piece that sits inside the car that heater hose runs through, I was quite impressed how it turned out as it was made on New Years day...

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Got to make it look worse before it can look better so out came the grinder to remove the rusty inner wheel arch area and a section of the floor to give me access. I trimmed some more out after the photo was taken to remove that patch.

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New section welded in, second attempt. First attempt we wont mention as I tried to make it so I could butt weld the panel in ... yeah that wasn't going to happen so I did this one with a slight joddled edge which made it easier to fit however not a good looking from the inside, never mind the carpet will hide it.

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A bit of trimming to that corner panel is needed at a later date to remove the excess at the top.
Finally just a little curved section back in to guide the heater hose.

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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by chris d » Wed Jun 08, 2016 8:26 pm

excellent metal fab
have you used a shrinker stretcher on some of your repairs
they look very neet
keep it up
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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by impstress2003 » Wed Jun 08, 2016 9:51 pm

Hi Matt,

Great work on the Singer!!

Good to meet you in Holland, good luck with the rebuild.

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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by tiker » Thu Jun 09, 2016 2:14 pm

Wow that's great fab work
Just one tip if you have no reference to work from don't trust what there I made a mistake few weeks ago put club rear wing on fabricated inner to suit the front rear corner was perfect then Peter came to have a look at the car ,only club member to have seen it as he had a look round he said hope you don't mind me saying the front corner is the wrong shape .thank god I hadn't welded it all up yet !!!

It was perfect, perfectly the wrong shape
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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by MattorMatty » Thu Jun 09, 2016 7:42 pm

Chris, no shrinker or stretcher used (They are on my shopping list for when I get round to make inner wheel arch panels) to stretch metal I used the method of hitting it with a hammer a lot :lol: and to shrink the cut and weld way.

Si, thanks! It was good to meet you too and all the best with your rebuild.

Gary, thanks for the heads up! I know what you mean as looking at my brown Super which I did a few years ago I can now spot the parts that aren't correct. There is a original Imp with 20,000 miles on the clock in my town I could use as reference but it is a late Imp so may not be the best built example :lol:

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Car Model: Singer Chamois Sport

Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by ForestGreen » Fri Jun 10, 2016 10:08 pm

P1010238.jpg
Matt

Wow, as a new member I'm gobsmacked by the amount of work you're doing. But really pleased to hear of another Chamois Sport saved. Mine - KPY 102E - was too far gone (though you'd have saved it, judging by what you're doing here) so I went for a thoroughly refurbed body shell and a complete switchover of everything else. Including a newish Webasto sunroof.

It's all a chequebook renovation, I'm afraid, but now just weeks away from completion (allegedly). Hoping to make it to Imp National. Anyway, here's what's left of the original - now a double decker Chamois!

J.
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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by MattorMatty » Mon Jun 13, 2016 8:52 pm

ForestGreen wrote:Matt

Wow, as a new member I'm gobsmacked by the amount of work you're doing. But really pleased to hear of another Chamois Sport saved. Mine - KPY 102E - was too far gone (though you'd have saved it, judging by what you're doing here) so I went for a thoroughly refurbed body shell and a complete switchover of everything else. Including a newish Webasto sunroof.

It's all a chequebook renovation, I'm afraid, but now just weeks away from completion (allegedly). Hoping to make it to Imp National. Anyway, here's what's left of the original - now a double decker Chamois!

J.
Thanks J, its certainly keeping me quiet ... apart from all the grinder noises :lol:
It'll be good to see yours at National and have a look at all the unique bits of trim that I'm currently missing. Are you tempted to turn the original shell in to a trailer?

Matt
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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by ForestGreen » Wed Jun 15, 2016 1:27 pm

Hadn't thought of the trailer idea. I'll look into it. Anyway, here's a pic of the state of play 6 months ago, before the engine went back in. Just the interior and glass to go
DSCF0001.jpg
now.
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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by MattorMatty » Mon Aug 22, 2016 4:57 pm

Long time no update but there has been progress, I made a pair of heater sills (only photographed the offside) I know the holes aren't necessary but that's how it was originally made so that's how i remade them.

Image

Then it was welded in, 99 plug welds so it wont be coming out to easily.

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Trial fit of the club floor panel, fits well and then the rear and the front of the panel was trimmed to fit in the hole.

Image

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And all welded in! Its nice to finally have a solid floor to look at, if I was going to do it again I would leave the seat base in place if the inner sill doesn't need replacing as it would make the shell stronger and save a lot of work.

Image
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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by The Nun » Mon Aug 22, 2016 6:05 pm

I think the holes/slots in the inner central sill panel were to allow some heat from the heater hoses into the outer sill to help keep it dry and free from moisture?
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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by impstress2003 » Mon Aug 22, 2016 6:32 pm

Great work! It's amazing how much difference a new floor makes! :D

My understanding of the holes in the inner sill/stiffener is that they were there so that the spot weld arms could pass through them to weld on the seat trays. The reason there are also holes towards the rear is that as I understand it they used the same pressing for both sides! (although I think the pressings were finished off differently prior to fitting)

It's a great thread, please keep the posts coming :mrgreen:

Cheers
Simon
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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by MattorMatty » Mon Aug 22, 2016 7:35 pm

Thanks Simon, looking at a new floor is certainly better than a rusty holed one, it'll be even better once I've done the otherside! Same as my understanding about allowing access for spot welder.

Whats that? Two updates in one day! :shock: :lol:

With a repaired inner sill, new heater sill and floor better crack on and get the outer sill on. I clamped it into place and then refitted the door just to check the gaps before welding, bearing in mind its not the original door it fitted surprisingly well it needs a little removing here and some adding there but as it needs some welding (surprise surprise) I can try and get some good gaps when all the surrounding welding is done.

Image

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The worst part is the gap at the bottom which is currently too large even with the outer sill as high as it goes but there is some rot at the bottom of the frame so when I repair that I can extend it down slightly closing that gap up.

Image

Once I was happy with the fit the outer sill had a good coat of paint inside and then welded on.

Image

Just a little bit cut out :lol: On to the otherside which is in a worse state.

Matt
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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by The Nun » Mon Aug 22, 2016 8:29 pm

Maybe you're right about the slots for spot welding, I suppose you need to know the factory build procedure to confirm it definitely though?
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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by ImpManiac » Fri Aug 26, 2016 11:26 am

Lovely work there, Matt. :D Your build is coming along very nicely.

IM 8)
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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by The Nun » Fri Aug 26, 2016 12:27 pm

The fact youre able to do all that in a single garage with only 6" down each side makes it even more amazing, youd never have though a car would revolve in that amount of space or be able to open the doors fully, simply amazing! :D
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Re: Clive - Singer Chamois Sport

Post by MattorMatty » Fri Aug 26, 2016 7:26 pm

Thanks IM :D

Thanks Peter, it is slightly snug in the garage, when I was measuring the space to know how much to extend the engine stands I had to make a decision on whether to have the car fully revolve but stuck in the garage or only part revolve and still be able to get it out of the door ... I chose to only part revolve. And the doors; yeah they only half open. I'll grab a photo when I do the other one as the car has to be on its side and the door lifted up into place and it still only just opens enough for the screws to be tightened. Still its all part of the fun and games.

Matt
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