Removing the body was really no big deal. A week before, we sprayed all the fasteners with Liquid Wrench. Be sure to use the penetrant which loosens nuts, not the cheaper " lubricant ". Besides the body bolts, there is wiring, fuel fill, steering column, brake and clutch, and shifter. You will find things you missed, as the body is lifted ( we forgot the parking brake cables) . We ran the chain through a pipe, so as not to stress body, and put most of the load on the panel behind the seats, which is close to the center of gravity.
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Before removal, from under the car, we marked the chassis with chalk, where the firewall and bulhead behind seats was located. Be sure to mark driver AND passenger sides as they may be different
you can see the back portion of the new shop is still under remodelling
BEFORE cleaning chassis, we used a grinder to mark the chalk lines for the firewall and rear cockpit bulkhead
This is what the cHenry J chassis looks like
You'll be glad the important grind marks survive the washing
We have three main concerns...first is the obvious HIGH mount gas tank that was installed by Cobb for road use. It'll be replaced by a fuel cell. second is the long shackles in the rear for added clearance for street use. Note a tremendous distance between the chassis and rear axle, and the super long leaf springs for a soft ride. They'll go too.
third, and most important, is the lack of cockpit room. The high seating will be lowered by "Z-ing" the frame (red lines), and legroom will be increased by building a new firewall once the engine is re-installed.
At the same time , we will correct the rear suspension height and spring length, and add a forward links and a Panhard bar for lateral stability.
Here are some front suspension and steering pictures. Both the suspension and steering are solid and responsive. Notice the extended Pittman arm......we'll make sure it's strong enough to resume racing strains for the future
Overall, we were pleased with what we have to work with. Elwin Holmes did a great job. The frame was well primered ( 45 years ago) and is rust free. Notice also the clean brake lines, but we'll replace them ALL anyway, as we always do.
Now , it is all coming apart...every bolt.... July 2, 2005
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