500+bhp Mk3 Fiesta Project

500+bhp Mk3 Fiesta Project

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Discussion

sc4589

1,950 posts

122 months

Tuesday 20th December 2011
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That colour is so, so nice! They really did some nice colours back then, I also loved the dark metallic green and blue they offered on the Si.

I'd buy one as a 'fun car', but I know I'd always want to send it to you and make you make it amazing. tongue out

mwstewart

Original Poster:

5,749 posts

145 months

Thursday 22nd December 2011
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I had a day off work yesterday and did what any person undertaking a restoration would do: drive a 600 mile round trip to collect more parts biggrin

The first stop was Wolverhampton to visit Aldridge Trimming. It took me a few weeks of investigation and research to find a company I trusted to re trim the interior, and during those weeks I emailed and spoke to trimmers who catered for various markets from the custom market (mainly VW), to more general trimmers who catered for boats and cars, through to those who catered specifically for the classic car market. There are obviously exceptions to the rule but I found that the trimmers with the greatest heritage and focus on quality of workmanship and materials were in the Classic car market. I think a lot of the modified car scene is about the first impression rather than an understanding of the materials and techniques, which is a shame as I wonder what will happen to some of the craftsmanship as time goes on. Aldridge are a great British firm who were established in the 1930's and continue to have very good reputation in classic circles, in fact it turned out that they trimmed one of the Jaguar's in the body shop I used. Here’s their site: http://www.aldridge.co.uk/about_us/index.cfm?id=2

My Girlfriend also took a day off and came along to provide company and a second opinion on my colour choices, in fact it was actually her car that was the most suitable to carry the interior because its parcel shelf is removable. Unfortunately her car is small, so with two of us together with the complete interior of another car the seating position on the way there was, interesting, to say the least! Here's the complete interior:


The first decision was headlining colour. The existing headlining is a very light grey and the A,B & C pillars are dark grey, but for the re trim I’ve opted to have all coloured in a shade of Alcantara that matches the original dark grey plastic. To help here I used one of the new trim pieces I'd bought to find a good match and I settled on colour 9052:


Next was the leather type and colour. Aldridge had a fantastic selection of hides including those which match the Bentley quality standard, and a range of colours which match OEM types in Ferrari, Bentley, Mercedes etc. I have decided on a Ferrari colour called 'Moderna' in the Premium Nappa leather. The hides alone are going to cost more than an average re trim but it will be worth it in the end.


Here are some other customers' cars which are all a contrast to my Fiesta! When seeing these my Girlfriend laughed and said I really should focus on a classic of some sort, which is an opinion that both she and my Parents have had for a while now. I tend to agree and I'm looking in to restoring an E-Type V12 once the Fiesta is complete.



The other stops on the road trip were to various places to collect a complete set of brand new and genuine Ford glass for the car. I also called in at Ford to collect a box of new trim clips and fastenings for the entire car.

Speaking of glass, the car is now home and every panel looks like a pane of it. Incredible.


Mikeyplum

1,581 posts

126 months

Thursday 22nd December 2011
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Been reading this thread from the start! And to say I am utterly in awe of your knowledge and attention to detail would be a massive understatement! Top marks!

It is really inspiring me to get a project started and gain some experience! Now that I have a nice big double garage to work from biggrin

Keep the updates coming! beer

Munter

29,996 posts

198 months

Thursday 22nd December 2011
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You drive all the way up here. To just a few streets away. And you don't pop in for a cup of tea! Disappointed. hehe

I was going to use those guys for a hood and a re-trim of the MX5 seats if I keep it. Mainly because they were just down the street. But if you're prepared to drive up to use them they must be good!

rb5er

11,657 posts

129 months

Thursday 22nd December 2011
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rhinochopig said:
To be fare, that's hardly a great accolade, I think he took that crown just by painting it biggrin

Keep up the good work though OP - fascinating build.
I`m sure thats said tongue in cheek but there have been plenty of seriously amazing mk3 fiestas built if you look for them.

I would have thought this amazing project will be up there with the best.

mwstewart

Original Poster:

5,749 posts

145 months

Wednesday 28th December 2011
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Some photos of the car before the build up starts tomorrow.















In preparation for the build I'd purchased two sets of new electric mirrors: one for my car, a Mk3.5 Fiesta, and the other for a later Mk4 Fiesta. The later Mk4 mirrors were identically sized for driver and passenger whereas, curiously, the drivers side of the earlier Mk3.5 mirrors was smaller which is of course very odd for a RHD market. Despite the size and base plate changes between years the internal architecture of the mirrors actually remained largely identical which meant that I could cannibalise both sets in order to make an equally sized pair to suit the earlier Mk3.5.



richtea78

5,574 posts

115 months

Thursday 29th December 2011
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There is a shade of Alcantara that's almost exactly the same as the colour of your car. Expensive fabric but lovely feel

m3jappa

4,867 posts

175 months

Thursday 29th December 2011
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Seriously awesome build and look forward to completion BUT those rear wheels make it look like stability may be an issue hehe

BigTom85

1,896 posts

128 months

Thursday 29th December 2011
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Good work Sir, I'm loving the attention to detail!

Keep the updates coming.

Dave Hedgehog

12,864 posts

161 months

Thursday 29th December 2011
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ffs hurry up, I want to see it finished....

stop wasting valuable time on stupid things like eating and sleeping grrr

Max_Torque

15,462 posts

174 months

Thursday 29th December 2011
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I can't quite believe i'm going to say this, and please, don't take this in the wrong way, but i think your talents are a bit "wasted" on a fiesta ! Now there is nothing wrong with the humble Festa but i'm just imagining the result if you applied a similar amount of skill to something more special/desirable?? bow

Liquid Knight

15,665 posts

140 months

Thursday 29th December 2011
quotequote all
m3jappa said:
Seriously awesome build and look forward to completion BUT those rear wheels make it look like stability may be an issue hehe
I think it's the same rear set up as the Thrust SSC prototype Mini. wink

rb5er

11,657 posts

129 months

Thursday 29th December 2011
quotequote all
Max_Torque said:
i think your talents are a bit "wasted" on a fiesta ! Now there is nothing wrong with the humble Festa but i'm just imagining the result if you applied a similar amount of skill to something more special/desirable?? bow
Like what sort of car? So many cars that are special/desirable are not the sort of car that would take very well to full on modifications like this. They would also have trouble being much lighter than this fiesta as well as ford engines being very cheap to get hold of parts for and being readily available, also if it were already a good, capable base car in the beginning the transformation would be nowhere near as noticeable.

McGoo 69

4 posts

105 months

Thursday 29th December 2011
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i have just signed up to piston heads forums specificly because i came across this thread on google when i asked it a ford related question

and i have to say i have never been so impressed with the ammount of work thats gone into a car, at times it seems like youve had another idea and taken steps backwards to correct/modify whatever you can, its realy impressive

im a memeber of passionford.com so i have seen alot of impressive builds but urs is deffinatly up there with the best for quality of work

now you can come help me build my escort mk5 track project, i can weld but i cannot manufacture the sheet steel like you have!

seriously impressed with your work

top job

matty

mwstewart

Original Poster:

5,749 posts

145 months

Thursday 29th December 2011
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Thanks for all the kind words and they certainly keep up my enthusiasm. I appreciate the Fiesta isn't everyone's cup of tea but it's definitely been a great platform for me to learn from. I also think there is potential in this chassis to make something that is very good fun to drive. I have already said further up the thread that I'm looking in to an E-Type restoration for whenever the Fiesta is complete but I wouldn't ever sell the Fiesta smile

Well, today I started bolting parts back on the car which is definitely an enjoyable stage of the project. Bare with me for some of these updates as they may be fairly mundane but I want to make sure I document everything for future reference.

I've purchased a few pots of Silicone grease to carefully apply to any edges of the shell where an an interference fit clip is located, or any other area where trim or other items are likely to come into contact with painted metal.The Silicone grease is completely harmless for plastic and rubbe, in fact it's actually beneficial because it helps oil based products retain their oils. The reason I'm using it though is to prevent rust from either installing fastenings or the ongoing use of the car. I found a few markets to which the grease is sold: fishing, radio controlled cars or watch making. The latter has the cheapest prices by far.


I have a big box of 'misc' which contains every single fastening, screw, clip etc. that is required for the entire car. I ordered two of most things in case I ever need to repair things in the future, as unlike other manufacturers Ford tend to discontinue parts on an ongoing basis.


New electric window motors and regulators. These are a revised design which seem to make far more use of plastic than the original.


Ford alarm system wiring for the tailgate, including solenoid operated remote tailgate release.


I think I already mentioned that I have a complete set of new Ford glass for the car together with new glass and aperture seals. I managed to get the rear window in today using the string technique. The new seals look perfectly black but as soon as you start to work with them they release a load of waxy mould release agent everywhere, so I need to clean the car before I take some photos.


I fitted the door handles using stainless steel versions of the original screws. I'm replacing most bolts on the car with stainless versions; there is a fastening firm close by who happen to manufacture copies of most things in stainless, which is very handy.


Fuel filler assembly rebuilt with new seals. The body shop painted the flap on both sides in fact they did everything including the front wings without prompting, which was a refreshing change!



A couple of shots which show the bolt on front wing conversion. The first shot shows the slam panel without the removable section I made, I added black anti abrasion tape on the ledges.


Here's the removable section fitted with stainless button head bolts.

mwstewart

Original Poster:

5,749 posts

145 months

Friday 30th December 2011
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New rear quarter window seals. I've had a few good second hand sets but thanks to sunlight they had all shrunk slightly and no longer fir the corners well, while in contrast the new seals are more supple and fit the aperture perfectly. I will keep the car garaged to prevent this kind of wear and tear in the future.


The new seals are lined with a non setting bedding sealant, which is a nice touch.


New weather strips for the doors. I believe these are sometimes referred to as 'glass scrapers'. They are basically pre-made mouldings that are manufactured in massive lengths then cut down to size with a guillotine. Ford don't put any surface protection on the cut edges so the internal aluminium strengthener eventually corrodes. I've painted the ends and greased them to prevent that.


New Mk4/5 Fiesta Aerial and base.


New door check straps and securing bolts.


New noise insulators/dust seal for the hole in the door where the mirror wiring passes through, and new interior trim piece to suit electric mirrors i.e. without a manual adjustment knob


I made a last minute modification to the door looms by adding an additional pin to the multi plug in order to run some puddle lights on the lower edge of the door cards. These will be operated by a feed from the General Electric Module (GEM) and will operate when the car is unlocked, or a door is open etc.


Check straps, mirrors etc., and door looms fitted. I also fitted new door ajar sensors with stainless screws.


New bonnet stay, bonnet stay clip, bonnet bump stops/adjusters, indicators and headlamps. The headlamp in this photo is an original Ford unit made by Valeo and as expected it fits perfectly. The O/S headlamp is made by Lucas and just doesn't fit parallel to the indicator, which is a big bug bear of mine on the Mk3 Fiesta as it is so easy to make a straight car look like its been badly put together. I will order a Valeo unit to match the N/S.


New captive fittings and screws for the rear wheel arch splash guards.


The next task was to start on the sound deadening work so that I can build up the rest of the doors, the tailgate, and add components to the bulkhead area. I'm using a mixture of materials for sound deadening:

- 4mm Butyl based product for areas that are likely transmission points for NVH
- 2mm Butyl based product for general panel vibration dampening
- 1.5mm Butyl based product for reducing vibrations on trim
- 10mm noise suppressant material for panels
- 3mm noise suppressant material for lining trim pieces



I keep this project in one of my parents garages and today my Dad very kindly helped me by starting on the vibration dampening work. First in the tailgate:


And then he did another fantastic job this time on the bulkhead using the 4mm Butyl material. Note holes cut out for fastenings etc. Thanks Dad!:

Crease

583 posts

126 months

Friday 30th December 2011
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im astounded by the quality of work gone into this build!

keep it up, and more for you for doing it to a mk3 fiesta! thumbup

richtea78

5,574 posts

115 months

Friday 30th December 2011
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Your attention to detail is almost OCD like in its brilliance!

TonyRPH

10,414 posts

125 months

Friday 30th December 2011
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If Carlsberg made cars....

They'd have mwstewart making them

Dave Hedgehog

12,864 posts

161 months

Friday 30th December 2011
quotequote all
mwstewart said:
Thanks for all the kind words and they certainly keep up my enthusiasm. I appreciate the Fiesta isn't everyone's cup of tea but it's definitely been a great platform for me to learn from. I also think there is potential in this chassis to make something that is very good fun to drive. I have already said further up the thread that I'm looking in to an E-Type restoration for whenever the Fiesta is complete but I wouldn't ever sell the Fiesta smile
I think most piston heads will appreciate what you are doing, making a car that looks reasonably stock with a very high quality finish but will be a total sleeper with a nutty drive train

you appear to be avoiding the awful barry/chav/max power look

looking forward to seeing the results.