My day started out fine with the fitting of new exhaust shields I had made for the 330 GTC. After looking for several months for a set of used ones, we finally decided to have a set made from scratch by our fabricators. GTC exhaust shields fit very tightly to the headers, and no two are exactly alike in shape and fit. I got the new ones to fit very nicely before taking them out for the final time for some black wrinkle paint.
My next job was to turn my attention back the PF coupe I’ve been working on. We’re planning on taking her to the Ferrari Club National Event in June, and I had some detailing parts to install on the car. I decided to start with the most difficult piece first and that was the heater hose. We sourced the correct heater hose and I needed to replace the old hose inside the engine compartment. After removing the old heater hoses, I went to push the new heater hose onto the heater core nipple and it broke off! As I stared at the broken piece in my hand, I immediately knew the amount of work ahead of me to fix this problem.
I called David, the owner, and proposed two options. The easy way would be to bypass the heater core by plugging up the hoses leading to the heater, or the hard way would be to remove the dash to gain access to the heater box to remove the heater core. I didn’t really want to do either job because the first option was not really a fix but a roadside type repair and the second was going to involve a lot of work to get to the near inaccessible heater box!
After discussing our options, we both agreed that it would be better to fix this this problem correctly, but I was not looking forward to the work! I tried my best to remove a little as possible to get the the heater core, but most of the dash had to come apart! I spent most of the first day cutting the crap out of my hands, and not getting very far. I went home pretty defeated.
With a night to recover, I returned to the shop with a renewed vigor refusing to loose to this heater core! After an hour or so, I had the heater box out of the car. It sometimes helps to walk away from a frustrating project.
The nipple on the heater core was destined to break considering how little material was holding it in place. The solder around the nipple was showing signs of weakening, and if it didn’t break in my hand, it would have eventually started leaking. After 50 years of service, it was due for a repair. I pulled out the core, and took it down to our radiator guy for the fix.
The nice thing about having the heater box out of the car is we can fix the two other problems with the heat. David told me the defroster motor was not working nor the pull cable that opened the defroster flap. With the heater box on the work bench, it was obvious what was wrong with both items. The defroster flap was rusted shut, and the fan motor was seized. After a couple of hours, both items were functioning properly.
Reminder: If you have a Ferrari related project, car, or idea you’d like to explore, I’d love to talk to you. I can also help if you’re thinking of buying or selling. This website represents what I love to do, share, and how I make a living, so if you’d like to do something together, let me know. It all begins with an e-mail!
Save the Date! Fourth Annual Radcliffe/Tomyang.net Spring Car Show on Saturday May 7th 2011. Richard Garre and I are looking forward to planning this show and more details will follow here and the Radcliffe Motorcar Company Website, but if you want to mark you calendar, the date to remember is May 7th, 2011!
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