Wednesday, December 5, 2018

LIGHT MOTORS foil sticker update

Huge credit to Chris Anderson ( for recreating the LIGHT MOTORS PTY LTD foil dealer dash sticker reproduction for my car.

The correct colour for your car as delivered by LIGHT MOTORS PTY LTD here in Adelaide is dependent on the sticker it came with - there was no hard and fast rule by the looks of it. All of them look fine (light blue, medium blue or black) and all are OK so if you need one, grab what ever colour you want or need.

As you can see below, the reproduction and the original are almost 100% identical.
If anything, the new one is more accurately laid out as you might expect and the corners are nicely cut.

The rear window water slide decal for LIGHT MOTORS will be the next candidate to finish my car off and may prove to be a bit more difficult than I initially thought.

Saturday, December 1, 2018

Another Dinky #144 VW Notchback

Another Dinky #144 VW Notchback found it's way to me plus the Corgi German Police bug which is a model I have been looking for, for some time.

This is about the scale of the VW toy collection now as I only collect 1960's models by Dinky and Corgi primarily from that period of time. The African safari bug and the Type 2 tow truck would be good models to find next.

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

M265 & Ron Fleming

I was told a few months back that Ron Fleming from FAT Performance was heading to Adelaide. Fantastic. I had met Ron a couple of times previously including just last year in Germany so it got me thinking that a few of us should make the effort and welcome him to Adelaide.
While it might not be much of an effort on the face of it, my black VW has not been on the road since 2005 and even that was in a limited capacity so I have been working on this VW for some time now to rectify annoying things on it such as the pedal assembly and air filters. Small nonsense that was never 'right' from back in 2001 when it was completed.

Here is the black VW wheeled outside. I rolled both the black and green VW's outside to swap their positions in the 'car house' and to enable the black car to be driven if I so desired (or intend).

Now sitting on the CNC BRM's. Looks a billion times better than the Flat-4 replicas but unfortunately the cost of this exercise was borderline insane. Never-the-less I am a results driven person so I am very pleased with the results.

The 1965 366, the 1964 312 and the 1990 MK2 GTI enjoying the Adelaide sunshine.

Back in the car house. The pedal assembly is now almost how I want it with replaced throttle shaft in the pedal assembly and a carburetor style linkage (rose joints) now connect the throttle pedal to the throttle shaft (formerly the standard 1965 VW-1500 set up of the roller with the pedal not exactly rolling down on it). Air filters are now in situ too. Next step will be a ECU swap out and crank trigger ignition to replace the MSD ignition 100% once and for all with coil on plug. Fly by wire would also be worth considering too but unsure on that right now.

Anyway, all that aside, I am looking forward to seeing Ron again at German Auto later this November. If you are in Adelaide, head there the day before the VW show.

Corgi & Dinky resto's

I have a very small collection of VW models these days because I came to the realisation I could restore proper full size cars for the money 'invested' in small models. So while I don't specifically collect any models on purpose, I do have a small bunch of 1/43 Minichamps of interest as well as older (1960's primarily) models such as the Dinky and Corgi models shown below.

As you can see I have 3 of the Dinky #144 notchback's in white with two being excellent and one being a bit play worn. In the background are models left to me by my grandfather - the 1600 fastback and Corgi T34 in red were bought by Len brand new back in the day. The white Corgi T34 is a model I found at a swap-meet a few years ago and have recently fitted repro tyres to it. The Corvair is another Corgi model I found this year at the toy swap meet in Wayville, SA.

The gold Corgi T34 is a model I have just finished the restoration of. It was originally a very bad play worn red model with no paint or tyres. I had it wet blasted back to bare cast and then primed and sprayed it in gold as that was kinda a colour you could get them in back then. Not 100% correct but it looks fine now. The primer white Dinky notchback was in very bad shape and also had no paint or tyres as well as having the front hood missing. I bought a repro hood from the UK, wet blasted the body and chassis, POR-15 painted the chassis, primed the body and had some bronze paint mixed up to replicate the original bronze that these came in back in the day. The bronze didn't work out exactly as expected but looks OK for a model that was worth perhaps $1 previously.

I have since detailed both models with silver on the bumpers and headlights etc.

Not too bad an outcome for these two worn out models.

Here is the bronze Dinky #144 next to an original paint version.

The tyres seem huge in this image but they are the original size.

Details details details

It's been a while and if you know what rubbish my wife and I have had to put up with, you will understand the lack of updates!

First off, long story short, as many of my peers are aware around the world, the South Australian Government have decided that they require our Croydon Park property that we had only just purchased during February 2017. This has put us back about 2 years in our ability to retire so....anyway, it's now in the hands of the legal professionals and I trust that the outcome isn't just a legal outcome, but an outcome commensurate with the effects of our displacement and 2 years of efforts. You may hear more about this soon and I won't commit a whole lot to here until its resolved unless there is a gag order involved too.
Those of you that know me can discuss with me.

So now we are back at Modbury Heights for the time being and I have been busy working on the notchback again in an effort to finish it off before we embark yet again on moving out of the area to somewhere else. Finishing the notchback will also enable the garage of the future to be somewhat smaller perhaps so there is method to the madness (doubtful I will get 146m2 approved again like at Croydon Park).

As can be seen, I have refit the rear insulation panels (original to the car) back in behind the back seat and it looks fantastic already. I need to make up some more insulation to cover the wheel wells as per original next and then the headliner can be fit and of course the rear seats and side paneling re-installed. I will show the seats perhaps in the next update (all redone as per original and looking fantastic).

The rear badge work is now installed too. The VOLKSWAGEN and 1500 badges are the original's to this car and were perfect when removed. I refit them with perfect clips and rubber buffers so it remains as it was. The housing and 'S' chrome emblem are NOS items as well as the lens and rubber. A very impressive bit of jewelry if I don't mind saying.

The front VW emblem and 'S' hood trim is now back on the car. The VW emblem is actually a NOS item because the old one had a weird dent in it. The hood trim is the original to the car and now installed with an NOS velvet green seal and original fasteners. The number plate is the original 1965 issued South Australian item and is fabricated of aluminium over steel which is correct for that period of time here. The paint is original and while the white number paint has lifted off in some area's, I don't see the point in repainting it as it's part of this car's history. The bracket and fixings underneath are the original items and re-plated.

I got around to reinstalling the NOS Abarth muffler recently too. This was a complete headache and didn't want to align as well as it should for what ever reason. After about 4 hours it was completed however and I used all original clamps and fasteners where appropriate. Bumpers need to be installed to appreciate the Abarth twin tips I think. Right now it looks out of proportion.

The ID plate is now back in place with alloy rivets.

These images show something I was quite pleased to find NOS from Josh in the USA - the brown horn earth cable from the top of the beam to the steering box. Correct and looking good. Amazing how dusty things are! I will need to give the car a complete detail before anyone gets to see it obviously.

The brake fluid bottle is installed now with correct screw thanks to Frank. Need to find a good quality cap. The repro items are garbage and the original one on this car was cracked.

Washer bottle and details look almost spot on from here.

And for now, this is the original jack back in place. I decided to keep it as is and not restored.
Next major update should have all 4 x fenders installed with the NOS velvet green beading's and that then leads onto the headlights, tail lights, indicators, side markers, antenna, side trim, reflectors and what ever else I can install (and thus remove the parts from the shelves). I must send the bumpers off for work too. Mario has the NOS over riders for me and the NOS brackets are in black paint ready to accept it all. Not far off now from resembling a complete car once again.

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Billet 6061-T6 VW BRM Wheel Centers in BBS 30 bolt pattern (15 inch)

Yes I have been busy and it's about the right time to let the cat out of the bag.

I have never been entirely happy with the Flat-4 BRM replicas on the black VW even after cutting the front wheels down from 5.5 to 4.25 inch and installing the 6.5 inch rear's. It just seemed like something any idiot with a VW could do even though it wasn't that easy ... so as my sideline business is equipped with a HAAS CNC mill, I got thinking about making my own wheels.

I then tracked down a pair of original magnesium BRM's out of California in order to accurately model my proposed design (one of which is now my spare wheel in the black VW) and set the engineers on their way with creating the wheels in computer code. I wanted to maintain as much of the original dimensioning as was reasonably possible even down to the steel lug inserts which we ended up replicating as a nod to the original wheel design (exact same as the original magnesium BRM inserts and available from us cad plated).

A quick trip to Surman Metals provided the raw stock - Russian 6061-T6 alloy sliced off as below and got Rob Surman excited as noted.

At this stage I had some very heavy lumps of alloy taking up a fair bit of room in the MK3 Golf. 

Next they were loaded up in the mill and within a reasonable amount of time the weight was reduced and the BRM wheel was beginning to be revealed!

We are serial numbering all wheels and this set (B00001-B00004) were reserved for my car. Why the 'B'? That is because we named the wheel after a chap I know - BORIS.

After being machined to about 95% I then sent the wheels off for shot blasting which then roughed up the flat surfaces to replicate the original finish. Another trip on the CNC then exposed the shiny sharp faces as I was wanting and then I then sent them off to Key Manufacturing for anodising in a silver to kind of match the BRM center caps I had bought from Ron Fleming at FAT Performance. I was either going to go black or silver and with the car being a very large black space, decided in the end to run with the silver to break up that darkness. I may do another set in black later if I get motivated. I am still of two minds.

Hardware was sourced from the UK and then the rim lips and barrels were produced in Victoria at to my specifications. As you can see I am running very different front and rear widths and offsets to suit my car which has some odd parts fitted (for a VW-1500) such as CSP front disks, 356B rear brakes (sourced many years ago from 'The Maestro' and are the rear set from a complete set that got split between myself and Jerry Seinfeld) and short Type 1 axles.

This is the exact reason I went down this path- my wheels can be made to fit any width or offset and fixes wheel fitment issues 100%.

I just hope that my measuring pays off and these fit the car as well as I am believing they will!

Wheel #B00001 after anodising. Nice work huh. 

Our business name machined in another spoke. There is so much more to come from us including engine components, dyno's and even a very special complete engine block that is VW related. This is just the tip of the iceberg.

And although it's a little hard to see, here is another set of BRM's to suit Simmons 15 inch pattern but are ultra thin and light weight. These do not allow the fitment of BRM caps due to the design but were made to specs for a formula vee which is being raced in Adelaide, South Australia by Rob Surman.

The BRM centers for my car only weigh about 2.62kg so these ones are lighter than that by a fair margin. Next step would be to make all of these in magnesium... or possibly an entire replica BRM in magnesium.

LIGHT MOTORS foil sticker update

Huge credit to Chris Anderson ( ) for recreating the LIGHT MOTORS PTY LTD foil dealer dash sticker reproduction f...