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Want to know what's up with Project 33? This area is updated monthly to let you know where we're at with the project. The latest Articles are featured in the What's New? area of this site and are in reverse chronological order. To follow the build up  from "day 1", go to the From the Start link and keep clicking on "Next Article". To view Articles on a particular subject, use the Search option of this site with the area you wish to explore as your keyword.

  11/29/02 Update

Season's Greeting!

`Tis the season!
The season for hibernating in the garage that is! There's not much daylight this time of year so the bright lights and white walls of the garage are my answer to SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder).

The roll cage is almost finished and I have a hot date with a TIG welder next week! Once the cage is welded and all the bolts are added to the sleeves, progress won't seem so slow. The cage was a major hurdle to overcome. I've never done anything remotely like it (other than bend electrical conduit) and I didn't want to screw it up. I also had to overcome the desire to walk away from it and work on other parts of the car instead.

People often ask how one can find the patience to build a car "from scratch". The answer is easy - it's a bunch of small projects all stuck together. With me, the smaller and quicker the project, the more rewarding it is. Like the turn signals in the headlights. That only took a small amount of time and yet made me feel like I'd really accomplished something. The roll cage on the other hand has drug on too long and I'm really glad to be able to move on to other things. Many of these "other things" require the finished cage to proceed.

There's an order in with Flaming River for everything to change the steering linkage to a 3-U-joint setup. I don't know why I didn't do that earlier but change happens! I guess it's easier to change it now than later and I'm only out an aluminum steering shaft and a little time. Changing the linkage will do three things;

  1. Make the column angle more comfortable
  2. Make more room for the brake and gas pedals
  3. Increase the exhaust header-to-steering shaft clearance

Speaking of change...
It never fails. Every time I make a change on the car a few followers of the project get totally confused. Sorry to throw you off but this is a "real time" project and I don't think there's a builder alive that can honestly say they've never changed something that they already thought was finished when they were building a car. Even the pro builders end up making unforeseen changes at times.

I'm also guessing that sometimes they'd like to make a change but it's too late. I once saw a car built by a pro builder (whom I still admire) with an example of this. The car had a nice recess in the firewall for the distributor but there was one small problem... when the body was installed it laid directly on top of the plug wires (at the distributor). In fact it was so tight that the body would have to be raised (or engine lowered) to replace a plug wire or distributor cap. OOPS! These types of problems are better addressed now, during the build, than later. I just hope I've spent enough time staring at the car and thinking things through to avoid as many of these glitches as possible.

Happy Holidays!
I've rattled on long enough - time to grab some Thanksgiving leftovers and head back to the garage. I hope I still fit in the car come Spring!

Until next time... thanks for visiting and keep the shiny side up!


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