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Thread: Phill's Nova Project finally begins

  1. #511
    Senior Member Phill's Avatar
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    Another moment of panic in the Nova

    Had another moment of crisis when test driving the car again after work today. Whilst driving the car on the private road area at the industrial estate where the car is now based I became aware that the roof mechanism was pulsing on and off without me touching the roof switch. At first I thought I must have the remote keyfob in my pocket that was triggering the mechanism but quickly realised this was not the case. I stopped the car and the pulsing settled into a constant roof down action with the pump eventually straining as the roof was became fully closed. The pump kept on running against a blank end and I had no way of switching it off from inside the car. Pressing the roof switch inside the car made no difference so I made yet another well rehearsed emergency exit out through the sunroof and was able to disconnect the battery cutting the power to the pump.

    Close investigation revealed that my temporary wiring was causing this issue. The push button switch (located in the front compartment that I use to open and close the roof from outside the car) was shorting itself out against the pumps metal pipework. The switch normally lies loose and had moved when the car was being driven causing it to make contact with the metal pipework.

    20180615_172454_resized.jpg

    Obviously this would never have happened if I had properly sorted wiring, but once again it brings home to me the importance of a back up means of escape should there be a problem with the roof. I'm not aiming this message at anyone in particular (cough Mark cough) just thought I should mention it.

    The joys of Nova ownership
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  2. #512
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    But my wiring IS properly sorted ( cough Phil cough) 😂😂

  3. #513
    Owners Register Admin & Euro-Nova Supporter BlueNova's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buffy View Post
    But my wiring IS properly sorted ( cough Phil cough) 😂😂
    Hi Mark,

    I know we've all had fun about this issue, but I really hope you don't live to regret the lack of a sunroof. I've probably missed the reason in the various threads, but why are you (and Steve?) so against having one? If you don't like glass, couldn't you go 'solid'?

    Can you escape via your side windows, because if (God forbid) the car ever landed on its roof and damage caused in the accident meant the pump failed, then the side windows would be the next obvious escape route.

    My Nova's got a glass sunroof and my side windows used to be bonded in, but I'd like to make them flip open for ventilation and ideally be totally removable. Mind you, all the above assumes that I could actually fit through the gap once I'd removed the side window. I'm on the small side, but I think I'll get the tape measure out in the morning to see if I'm talking sense (or not!)

    Cheers, Alistair

  4. #514
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buffy View Post
    But my wiring IS properly sorted ( cough Phil cough) 😂😂
    Very true & something I totally agree with. To be honest if all goes wrong those glued / bonded side windows will soon push out.

    Also on balance Phil did say it was a temporary wiring job for testing.

    All part of the fun.
    Mostin.
    “A plan is only a means of measuring where things went wrong”

  5. #515
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlueNova View Post
    Hi Mark,

    I know we've all had fun about this issue, but I really hope you don't live to regret the lack of a sunroof. I've probably missed the reason in the various threads, but why are you (and Steve?) so against having one? If you don't like glass, couldn't you go 'solid'?

    [...]

    Cheers, Alistair
    Hi Alistair,
    I don't plan on having a sunroof because i think the car looks better without one
    (although 'solid' is an interesting option). But I will have an escape route in the event of roof failure.
    The current plan is to have a removable bottom mount on the actuators so I can manually lift the roof, if that is not viable I'll try something else...

    I also take Buffy's point about wiring. Most production cars have industrial strength wiring, i.e. all in conduit, nothing exposed, proper connectors, with loom runs located out of harms way.
    That can't be said for most kit cars. IMO that is the majority of roof failures right there.

    Phill has a temp wiring loom to get the car moving and shake out gremlins - that's different,
    but his post is a wake-up call to Nova owners old & new to get your wiring as close as possible to production car standards.
    Sorry to hijack you thread Phill.

  6. #516
    Senior Member Phill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by steve View Post
    I will have an escape route in the event of roof failure.
    The current plan is to have a removable bottom mount on the actuators so I can manually lift the roof, if that is not viable I'll try something else...
    I have my doubts that you would be able to lift the weight of the roof without some sort of assistance (e.g gas rams)?

    I was demonstrating the car to my mother today and she wants me to sell it. Why? Because she doesn't like the roof system and is worried I get stuck inside in the event of an accident or fire. I explained about the sunroof but she still hates the car..
    "The most beautiful kit car in the world - Motor"

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  7. #517
    Mine was like that about my first one back in the eighties - refused to ever go in it, but didn't try and make me get rid of it!
    It's a 52 year old car and everything works, just not always at the same time.......and it's probably about to get jealous!
    *Donate to Euro-Nova today!*

  8. #518
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    [QUOTE=Gaisa]
    Quote Originally Posted by BlueNova View Post
    Can you escape via your side windows, because if (God forbid) the car ever landed on its roof and damage caused in the accident meant the pump failed, then the side windows would be the next obvious escape route.

    Cheers, Alistair

    Alistair, while your idea of fitting through the side windows, if, gods' forbid, it ends up on the roof, is laudable, would the canopy structure be strong enough to hold the weight of the car and not collapse?
    I'm asking, because I remember what Mick's canopy looked like after that muppet recovery bloke crushed his with that tie strap...

    As for lifting the whole car with its hydraulic (or whatever you have) rams? could they actually do that?

    This is something I've had in my mind ever since I decided I want to (eventually) own a Nova, I can see how the rear part of the body may hold enough structure to act as a roll frame, so the driver should be safe enough (if it isn't, I would definitely be thinking of reinforcing it with a "hidden" frame for exactly that purpose)

    Then again, I've got plenty of crazy things going on in my head for whatever I dream up in the future :P

    (posted openly after a private dialogue with Alistair )

    As for opening the roof if it refuses to open or quick exit methods, isn't there some way to do similar to what Steve mentioned, a "release" to disconnect the rams/actuators, and if not lift the whole canopy, perhaps get it to hinge forwards?

  9. #519
    My parents had a pretty bad accident in a large 4 door SUV recently. The car was hit side on, despite having 4 doors the two on the drivers side would not open after the accident and my father had to be cut out of the car, the whole side of the car was cut off to extricate him.

    So maybe we are all trying to cover too many bases thinking about rams lifting the car etc.. Having use the sunroof several times I'll stick with that. My mother also never wanted to travel in my Nova

  10. #520
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    Quote Originally Posted by Phill View Post
    I have my doubts that you would be able to lift the weight of the roof without some sort of assistance (e.g gas rams)?

    I was demonstrating the car to my mother today and she wants me to sell it. Why? Because she doesn't like the roof system and is worried I get stuck inside in the event of an accident or fire. I explained about the sunroof but she still hates the car..
    When my Nova was originally on the road, I had a lever in the side by the drivers seat that released the 'holding' pressure by piping around the valve. On more than one occasion when the fuse went for the pump, (The fuse box was mounted on the top front drivers side of the dash, which you couldn't get to with the roof down - no idea why the original builder put it there!), I could then release the hydraulics, and if you then lean forward out of the seat and get your shoulders under the front of the roof, it is possible to lift the canopy. Re-engaging the lever to allow the hydraulics to again be held, the roof would lower until the pressure was enough to hold again when you sat back down but leave enough gap to allow you to crawl out of the side. I intend to implement the same system on the rebuild but will have to see how it was originally piped up to the lever.
    I do also have a sunroof, but the lever was very handy! `¬)

    Of course in the event of an accident, and you were upside down...
    I doubt if you could roll over the Nova in anything but an accident! (And I believe Nova cars had to show that the pump would lift the car from the roof when it was upside down)

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