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The Plume School Micro Project

Report 2:February / March 2001

We've had a couple more weeks to work on the car (half term hols excepted) and  as I thought, we've been doing a fair bit of chopping and rewelding to the  chassis. We have shortened it, lengthened it and reduced the front section width  twice. I'm still not happy with the front suspension geometry but we may try to get it up and running as is to test how things stand before more alterations. Engine and frame mounting was very straightforward and looks and feels good and strong. We will put in some side rails front to rear to stiffen the chassis. We have decided on a direct steering arrangement and this will be the next task. We will make a track rod between the uprights and fit a drop plate from the steering column. A short ball jointed rod will join the two.

Neil Tatchel supplied us with a couple of  motorcycle coilover units which have worked very well on our front suspension  and feel just right. We are going to use the hydraulic brakes on the Mini front  hubs with a standard foot pedal and the rear brake of the moped operated from  the original moped hand lever mounted on our "steering wheel". This last item is  actually the handlebar from an exercise bike which is an oblong shaped tubular  jobby. The rear brake must also be operated by a parking brake lever (handbrake)  so we must devise a linkage which enables both. The front bulkhead, floor, seat and backrest will  be plywood fixed to the framework and will form the fixing points for our body buck when we get to that stage.

Robert, Matt and John have only a few weeks left  before they leave school and at that stage it is likely another group will take over the project. My hope is we will be able to drive and prove the chassis and  mechanicals at the very least before they leave. Their enthusiasm has been excellent and they have worked hard to get this far so quickly. Hopefully the  next few weeks will see some outdoor 'action shots' to add to the site.

Go to Report 3

Engine now mounted into frame.

Engine and Chassis.