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Thread: Giles's Nova

  1. #1
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    Giles's Nova

    Hi guys. Welcome to my Nova project.

    As detailed on my welcome post my Nova has been off the road for about 8 years, having been left in a state of needing a lot of work to finish it to a much improved standard than when it was on the road back in the mid to late 90's.

    I am now in the process of improving it to what I feel will be a final finished high standard.

    I will try to keep each job 'post' complete, from start to finish, but as there are overlaps I've labelled each job with a number which I will repeat for easy reference.

    Here goes...


    JOB 1
    Inspiration




    Sticking a photo of the Nova on the wall of the garage to keep us going.






    JOB 2
    Windscreen Washer Bottle & Spray Nozzles





    Vauxhall Vectra windscreen washer pump in place.
    I was impressed by the power of this pump, the shape of the bottle and the shape and configuration of the twin adjustable nozzles, so I bought it all.
    The cap and inlet pipe is easy to get a funnel onto and pour water into.
    One outlet pipe & black tubing (which splits) goes to both zozzles in bonnet.
    Does anyone know what the second outlet pipe clear tubing is for?





    Twin nozzles in place with twin black tubing seen unconnected below.
    The adjustable nozzles each have two jets and fit perfectly into their intricately cut holes. When the Nova has been painted I will bond them at the back and connect the tubing.







    This should work very well.





    JOB 3
    Battery




    A good quality powerful battery never fitted into my sunken battery home in my bonnet space as it was always too big. So I made a metal plate to bridge the sunken home and bonded it in place. I then constructed a very effective but minimal bracket device which stops the battery moving in any direction. The bracket is also adjustable should I ever need a new battery which may differ slightly in size.





    JOB 4
    Bonnet Hinge






    The bonnet is hinged by two stainless steel set screws passing through each reinforced inside upper corner of the bonnet and into a captive stainless nut within a reinforced section in the body on the inside top wheelarch. A nylon sleeve has been bonded within the each bonnet hole so that each set screw rotates within the sleeve each time the bonnet is opened and closed.

    The set screws should be tightened uniformly and are exactly the right length so that they bottom out when the bonnet is in the perfect position.

    The small crack you can see appeared recently when I screwed one set screw in too far before doing the other. In doing so the bonnet moved over too far to the left, pushed the nylon sleeve slightly and cracked the finishing layer of filler. This is not an operational defect, just cosmetical. I will reinforce the corner mounts with a little more fibreglass and re-finish the filler.





    JOB 5
    Bonnet Catch




    Production car bonnet catch (forget which), modified with an extra welded on bracket to suit direction and angle of the bonnet pull cable. No, it hasn't been welded to the spring. Trick photography!





    Bonnet catch screwed to its partner bracket which has been welded to a home made bracket that has been pop rivetted to the bonnet space.

    The cable held in place with one of those house electrical block connectors. I may think of something better although these do actually work very well. I may fit another in line as an extra precaution.

    The catch is in perfect position to latch firmly onto its partner 'bar' (technical name anyone?) in the next photo...





    The bar & plate having been glassed into the underside of the bonnet. This will all be made good, painted or covered in something. Any ideas? Who does what with the underside of their Nova bonnet?






    JOB 6
    Engine


    Here is the Nova engine about to be fitted in 1997:






    ...and here it was three weeks ago:



    This is what about 6000 miles in a Nova in all weathers does to a spotless engine! Even with aluminium engine bay shrouds that I made. I guess you just can't keep the weather out of a Nova engine bay.

    The engine is a 118bhp Alfa Romeo 1.7 8 Valve from an Alfa Romeo 33. Mileage unknown.

    I had it running with twin 40 Dellorto carburettors and Pipercross air filters. This made the engine sound amazing, especially at 4500 RPM. The standard air filter box unit made an enormous difference to the sound, making it much quieter. The engine internals were completely standard. I love this engine and feel it is perfectly suited to the Nova. It is light, easy revving and sounds lovely. It is also very easy to service from above with the engine lid off. Equally it is easy to get in and out with the rear end removed.

    The engine is currently at Rusper Alfa, West Sussex. They are carrying out the following:

    • • Stripping down


    • • Reconditioning every part


    • • Increasing the bores


    • • Using enlarged pistons


    • • Balancing the crankshaft


    • • Lightening the flywheel


    When completed, the brand new engine, which will need runnning in, will be a 1.8 with approximately 130bhp.


    to be continued...
    Last edited by NovaF4; 06-06-2014 at 02:38 PM.

  2. #2
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    Re: Giles's Nova

    *Que Lauren re Alfa Romeo T33 engine in 3...2...1...*


  3. #3
    ***Euro-Nova Supporter*** Spacenut's Avatar
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    Re: Giles's Nova

    Well, I guess its no secret that I am an Alfa boxer enthusiast

    There's some great work going on there Giles, you've really got the bug again haven't you? Looking forward to seeing some of your major improvements come to fruition

    Lauren
    only Pythagoras can save me now!

  4. #4

    Re: Giles's Nova

    Great work

    Six jobs in progress. I have had my second Nova project for around 6 weeks now and not done a thing ! - though the buggy is coming on well!

    I really like the bonnet work

    The bar & plate having been glassed into the underside of the bonnet. This will all be made good, painted or covered in something. Any ideas? Who does what with the underside of their Nova bonnet?
    I had the underside of my bonnet and engine lid in satin black - covers a multitude of sins ! Most recently on the buggy I have been using Everbuild 901 Black Jack Bitumen. Complete overkill - but it seals dusty and dirty fibreglass well, and doesn't stay sticky - I have used it on the sides and under arches of the buggy, and the last Nova. http://www.toolbank.com/p/EVB90101

    When I get to the Nova will have to pop along for inspiration and a cuppa Giles, you are pretty local to us,

    Keep it up - very inspiring,
    All the best,

    Jim

    Club Nova Member, SDBC Member, GRRC Member, Southern Classics



    Read more about latest Nova developments in Complete Kit Car

  5. #5
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    Re: Giles's Nova

    JOB 6 continued...
    Engine


    For anyone that is interested, here are some shots of the Alfa engine in the Nova:










    JOB 7
    Seats


    Back in '99 I bought a pair of Toyota MR2 (mark 1) seats for the Nova. This is what they looked like when they arrived:



    Naturally they were too wide, so we set about narrowing just the seat bases. I never intended to keep them covered in this stuff so the covers came off both seats cushions and backs. I then got to learn how production seats were made. After all the bits and pieces were removed we set about cutting 6cm out of the sprung steel seat frames (not easy) and then welded them back together.

    At this point each seat was in two 'halves' (bases and backs) and we then had to position each half of both seats into the Nova.

    There were to be no sliding rails - these seats were to be fixed, so we chose the best position for the driver (me) and the same for the passenger, whilst trying to keep them pretty much the same.

    The seat frames were bolted to the floorpan and the backs bolted to the floorpan sides. Both seat and back are independent of each other. This may sound odd but there really is no difference. Once trimmed each seat will look as if it were 'one'.

    I was trial fitting a new steering column at the time which was good timing as it was kinda crucial to get the seat position right.

    Many trial fitments later with me sat in the Nova holding the steering wheel and with feet on pedals the drivers seat was set in position. I'm 6 foot so it had to be quite far back.

    The passenger seat position lent itself well to the drivers seat and ended up opposite with lots of nice legroom.

    Both seats recline and have adjustable headrests. The drivers seat has an adjustable lumber support and also adjustable side bolsters, which will be handy when I'm pulling 2G whilst cornering.

    Here they are in the Nova:










    I can't wait to have them trimmed.


    to be continued...

  6. #6
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    Re: Giles's Nova

    That's certainly a novel way of doing the seats. Would have never thought of that. Will be interesting to see how they look trimmed. Also have to ask, what's the rear spoiler from?

  7. #7

    Re: Giles's Nova

    Hi what is the squarish cutout near the drivers seat about upper arm height, the bit cut ito the side.
    http://jimsnova.page.tl/
    Club Nova / avante membership 031

  8. #8
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    Re: Giles's Nova

    That's certainly a novel way of doing the seats. Would have never thought of that. Will be interesting to see how they look trimmed. Also have to ask, what's the rear spoiler from?
    Hi CyCo

    Yes I guess when I think about it, it is pretty novel. As long as there isn't a huge offset or gap between seat cushion and back part then I don't see why it's not as good as keeping a seat as 'one'. I have a small gap between the two parts but this will be sorted out by the trimmer. I'm asking him to increase the height of the seat padding which will not only fill in this gap but will also be more comfortable because at the moment, due to the reduced width, I'm partly sitting on the raised seat squabs on each side of the cushion.

    The rear wing isn't from anything. It's custom made.

  9. #9
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    Re: Giles's Nova

    Hi what is the squarish cutout near the drivers seat about upper arm height, the bit cut ito the side.
    Hi Jimcub

    That was for my exterior key switch that operated the roof manually from outside. The idea lasted about a week before I decided I didn't like it. It ruined the lines and I thought it was possibly a security issue.

    The hole was cut so I could fit it.

    I will be glassing in part of this gap as it is a little too near the top edge for my liking.

  10. #10
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    Re: Giles's Nova

    JOB 8
    Steering Column


    I decided it was time for the VW steering column to go, for several reasons. I'd bought a mark 4 dashboard which I didn't want laden with all the switches usually found on steering column stalks. My old mark 3 dashboard was such an example and looked too busy and messy. I also wanted a steering column that offered an extend and tilt operation.

    I ended up buying a much more advanced column from a Toyota Supra and had a frame welded up to support it.

    The column stalk functions include: 3 speed wiper with delay control, washer button, indicators, side lights, headlights, main beam and main beam flash. It also has a rear wiper control which I won't be needing.

    Naturally it also has an ignition switch built in.

    Soon to trouble us will be the dreaded wiring which I will no doubt need help from a mobile auto electrician.

    The following photos show the column with its black plastic shrouds and my steering wheel boss cover removed. (Photos to follow).







    Excuse the mess surrounding it. Orange gel coat with dripping back paint and wiring loom snaking around it looks awful, but it will all be perfect when finished.


    to be continued...

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