So why the long wait?

Thursday, 17 January 2008 | Comments (1) | Categories: General, Magazines/Blogs

Seasons greetings to all. Apologies for the break, but went on holidays for a couple of back at work. So I suppose I should give you an update on how things are going. Well, pretty good on a whole. The last time I posted we had just had a tune, and although laggy, the power figure eclipsed my goal of 300rwhp. Of course, now we have to make it responsive. A story that is still playing (today actually).

Anyway, over the Christmas break, the family went on holiday down to Margaret River (about 3.5hrs drive south of Perth). As we were spending Christmas Day down there with the majority of the extended family, we had to take the 5 of us (the wife and I plus the 3 kids) and all the presents. Now my wife's car is by now means small, it's actually a bit of a bohemoth (1995 BMW 740iL) but still it wasn't big enough to carry everything. As such, I decided to take Sillbeer on an extended cruise down south. At this point, the car had only done about 1500kms, so I was a little hesitant to take her on such a long route away from workshops and cheap tilt-tray fees, but I'm proud to say she made it there and back without too much of a hassle.

To give you an idea of what it was like, from Perth down to Busselton bypass it was all smooth, but the last 90kms or so to Margaret River, the road goes real country. The suspension on the Sillbeer, although reasonably compliant, didn't like the rutted, potted roads on that stretch. You basically had to keep your attention at a very high level. Once down there, I took it out a little, but wasn't expecting from the little amount that I'd end up with a busted front parker/indicator light. It wasn't until I took it down to my brother-in-law's business to take a look at the car, that it was noticed. By the looks of it, someone has rubbed their black bumper lightly on my front bumper, which was high enough to crack open the parker light. Not happy Jan. Now the reason for taking it to my brother-in-law's business is obvious by its name - Margaret River Panel Beaters. You see, soon after getting the car moving, spider cracks started appearing in the rear affect of not sanding back the original two colours of paint enough and possibly too much filler. After seeing that and a quick chat with Scott the spray painter, it was agreed I'd leave the car there the next day when I went back with the family and come get it a week later.

Well the job was top class. The paint colour match was brilliant, and with all the shake, rattle and roll of the trip back, not a crack to be seen. While they had it, they also gave it a good polish. Many thanks to Anthony (my brother-in-law) and Scott at Margaret River Panel Beaters for a top notch job - wish they were in Perth.

Sillbeer's 1st Professional Photoshoot
Photo Gallery

As the car had just been polished, an established local automotive photo-journalist Rick McDowell made time to take some pics of Sillbeer. Over a period of about 4hrs and with lots of experimenting here's a sample of the photographs that were shot (click on the photo above). Many thanks to Rick for taking the time to shoot the car. He tells me there's more to do though with undercarriage, more engine and interior and move shots to go. Once that's done, he'll be submitting them, along with a story, to a few international magazines.

He'll cover the whole story hopefully on how I got from this:
Sillbeer before it all started

to this:
Now look at it!

One thing you will notice in the gallery is the Defi Gauges mounted on the dash. I did this between the tune and going down south. The result was surpisingly good, and have now scrapped plans to do a custom gauge hood/mounting arrangement. Still to be mounted on the A-Pillar is the boost gauge which will have to wait for the time being until I can build up the fundage again. The job was relative simple, just using my eye, a ruler and some masking tape to pre-determine how the gauges were to be mounted. While I had the dash apart, I also tried to adjust my fuel gauge which was showing just over half full as being full. Unfortunately I adjusted it a little too much and now full is pointing past the vertical position.

Now there's still some rattles that I'm chasing down, the most of them in the doors were to do with the windows rattling on the back of the speaker magnets when in the down position. The main one at the moment is the right hand bonnet (hood) hinge. The pin that runs through the centre has worn enough that when the bonnet is shut, it rattles around in it's hole...and right at idle or 60km/h. For now, a piece of paper stuffed in the hinge is enough to stop the rattle, but I'll be working towards a better solution soon.

As mentioned first up, the car is up at Allstar Garage getting tuned...with a view to dial in the cam timing for better response and maybe even a little more power considering the car was still pulling at the redline from the first tune. If successful, the car will be getting a bit of pushing at this weekend's Motorvation where I'll be entering under the SilviaWA banner. There's driving events on including motorkhana, slalom and go-to-whoa as well as a dyno competition, sound off and overall car judging too. It'll be my first major show with the car in relatively complete format so very excited.

Will post up results of the dyno session when I find out, until then, drive safe.


Your Comments

Posted by papilliongirl | 17 January 2008 at 02:27 AM

Hi Brendan,

I was surfing the net in vain trying to find anyone that had the centrex 19” LCD as mine doesn’t have a manual…..are you able to help me out?  Unfortunately I can’t even contact the company as they’ve gone into receivership!!!!  I would appreciate any help you can give.

(Melbourne, Victoria.
email: .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address))

Thanks in advance!!

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