944 Nightmare

September 8th, 2011

Sometimes what seems like a simple job can just keep snowballing. This 944 came in with a fairly small water leak. It turned out to be the water pump so we advised on new pump and cambelts while we were at it.  Porsche had used mostly nuts and studs to hold the pump in place so with a bit of gas to heat up the nuts they were soon undone. Unfortunately they’d decided the bottom 2 fixings should be bolts into the block, and there’s no way to loosen them off. 20 years of aluminium reacting with steel meant that despite our best efforts the inevitable happened and the bolts broke in the block. A jig was made to locate the drill and using special bits the old bolts were carefully drilled out. New threads were tapped and the new pump went on. We had been supplied a later S2 pump having been told the earlier one was no longer available. With a few changes it did fit but left an idler pulley sitting incorrectly on the cam belt. This lead to several days mix and matching S1 and S2 pulleys to get everything sitting right. All finished well with the job done and no problems. Not the easiest water pump to change though!

keeping it simple

August 1st, 2011

This signum came in with the back boxes blowing on it. The replacements were expensive to say the least and the owners fancied something a little sportier so we decided to build him the rear section in mild steel. the car comes with a large centre box and 2 massive back boxes. To our surprise with the rear boxes removed the car sounded a bit more aggressive but the noise was hardly any louder. We had expected to need to replace the rear boxes to keep the volume sensible but Vauxhall had obviously been pretty cautious with the number of boxes fitted. With some simple pipework and a couple of nice tips the job was cheap and sounded great.

Tardis exhaust

July 28th, 2011

we always say that just about anything is possible when it comes to building exhausts. that is assuming you’ve got enough space to fit in big enough boxes. The owner of this Porsche wanted to keep it pretty quiet but also had a limit to his budget, so fancy designs or even large silencer boxes were out of the question. the problem is that with the engine hanging right out of the back there isn’t much room to play with. that’s a problem if the exhaust needs to be quiet as less noise means more exhaust boxes. In the end we twisted the pipework around a couple of standard pattern boxes and slipped in a decibel insert to keep the reverberation down.

Mild steel, wild car

July 28th, 2011

This Astra GTE is a full on race car kicking out over 250Bhp. The tired old exhaust was neither big enough nor up to the job of meeting the noise regulations. We designed and built a system using 2.5 inch mandrel bent mild steel pipe and boxes big enough to keep the noise within the regulations. the object is to get maximum flow which normally means just scraping in on the noise test. This one had 4db to spare. On race cars it’s important to get the whole thing tucked well up so it doesn’t get pulled off if the car runs wide on a corner. Extra hangers ensure this race car sees the chequered flag every time.

Moggy weldathon

July 28th, 2011

We’ve been doing a  lot or Morris Minors recently. I think a lot of owners are pre-empting an increase in value so have taken to welding and waxoyling. This Morris needed lots of welding on the floor, but the further we got into it the more it needed. You can see from the pictures the amount of panels that went into the car, that’s not counting the ones we had to make! It took 2 solid weeks of cutting, dressing, welding, fabricating, welding again, dressing some more then waxoyling to get some strength  back into the old girl. After all of that I’m sure she’ll be on the road for another 30 years yet.

Mondeo based jigsaw

July 28th, 2011

If you’ve ever wondered what the first part down the production line is on a V6 mondeo, the answer is ‘The Exhaust Manifolds’.  Our very good and regular customer of ours found himself in trouble when yet again no local garages or exhaust specialists would help him. Despite the drive he wound up back at our door hoping we could fit his tubular exhaust manifolds for him. Unfortunately there were several stubborn nuts and bolts in awkward places making the task a struggle. After several hours we had the manifolds off, or more specifically the car off the manifolds. Once back together the car sounded awesome. Check it out  on you tube on-  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b3ZkGTZJTnI

Awkward Alfa

July 28th, 2011

This beautiful looking GTV had been giving it’s owner headache and heartache for months. The owner wasn’t shy when it came to getting his hands dirty and certainly know’s his way around Alfa’s. Everyone needs a little help from time to time though and we’re more than happy to work alongside the owners efforts.  The car has a pretty big turbo blowing through twin 40 DHLA carbs with a Canems ECU controlling the sparks. Every part of the system had faults that interfered with each other making the task of getting it running like trying to knit spaghetti. We did a little rewiring and resetting of things which improved the situation. Sadly as hard as we tried the carbs wouldn’t work sweetly, although it was healthy enough for an MoT. These projects are rarely a quick fix, more work in progress. The owner has new carbs on the way and we’ll try again when they arrive. Despite the challenge it’s a pleasure working on such a beautiful and special classic.

CSCC from Spa, Belgium

July 1st, 2011

For the third round of the season we travelled to Belgium. Spa is a long time fixture on the Formula one calendar and an awesome circuit. Corners such as Eau Rouge and Blanchimont require so much accuracy, skill and bravery. The whole lap is a breath taking rollercoaster. On the thursday test we carried out a few minor changes which set the car perfectly for the circuit. In qualifying the rain came along but that had little effect on our pace, with the car once again finding itself on class pole. My co driver and car owner took the start but on the run to Eau Rouge dropped a couple of places with a missed gear. Trying to slot back into the pack he ran slightly wide on the exit and the rear wheel hooked the damp exit kerb pitching the car into a spin. Most of the pack avoided the spinning car but a Westfield also ran wide and hit the back of the Pug, now stationary on the grass. The result was the Peugeot was for the second time this year running on 3 wheels, and the race would go no further for us. 

PPC in the Park

June 14th, 2011

AA Silencers were at Practical performance car’s annual show and Mallory Park. AA Silencers owner Mark Hammersleys is a writer for the magazine and gave passenger rides and driver tuition at the show. He also took out the magazines Rolls Royce for some demo laps. AA Silencers staff also took their cars out for some track action

A cheaper option

June 14th, 2011

Not all cars need stainless steel exhausts, even if they are luxury classics. Show cars and performance cars spend most of their lives away from road salt and poor weather conditions. Because of this a tailor made mild steel exhaust will usually give many years service. This XK came in for a mild steel exhaust build. The pipework and boxes are exactly the same as stainless steel and a stainless tip was added so the final look is the same. The only difference is the price, usually about half the cost for a mild steel exhaust.