719R - Build report by Peter Wannop
bought a set of plans and the build manual for £ 45 and with
the aid of my son I started to build the wooden body tub. I used
3/4 inch marine ply. The joints were glued, screwed and reinforced
where necessary with 1 inch aluminium angle. The only change I made
from the instructions was an aluminium propshaft tunnel top.
completed body was then put to one side after painting all the underside
with black rubberised roofing paint purchased from B&Q. (This was
also used on the underside of the fibreglass wings to protect from
stone chips). By this time I had prepared all the running gear and
placed an order for the chassis. I also bought all the fibreglass,
a windscreen and mounts, pedal box, rear axle kit, petrol tank,
roll over bar, and a spare wheel carrier.
receipt of the chassis it was given a coat of black smoothrite paint.
welding the 'axle clamps' to the rear axle the running gear was
then fitted to the chassis. The steering rack had to be lengthened
on one side.
fitting the petrol tank the rear luggage compartment floor was removed
and the roll over bar bolted directly to the chassis. The luggage
compartment floor was split into two pieces and refitted. The gear
leaver extension was made as described in the build manual using
an old gear lever remote mounted in the tunnel. The pedal box was
then given a trial fit for location before the tub was skinned.
body tub was skinned in aluminium and the radiator (Skoda Estelle),
exhaust (Volvo), and pedals were fitted. The pedal box was a good
buy as the pedals fitted without any major modifications. The Skoda
radiator was chosen as it was the correct dimensions, had an electrical
fan as standard, and I assumed that as it was normally fitted to
a rear engined car it should be able to keep a Locust cool. The
hydraulic brakes lines were fitted using a non-servo master cylinder
from a Fiesta. All rubber brake hoses were replaced with Aeroquip
stainless steel braded hoses.
steering column was then fitted I used a combination of Austin Allegro
and Morris Marina column extensions to join the Escort column to
the rack. This involved no welding of the column. The dashboard
was fitted with a combination of Smiths gauges from a Triumph Dolomite
and a Mini. A windscreen wiper system from a Mini was also fitted.
The dashboard cowl and bonnet were then made from aluminium sheet
and fitted. The bonnet curves were courtesy of the GPO (Telegraph
pole at the end of my drive).
was then time to fit the electrics. This was the task I had been
dreading. The loom from the Escort was used with extra earth leads
spliced in as required. The major modification was in the area of
the instruments as they were now all individual items and they were
not from the Escort. It wasn't as bad as I had feared. I even managed
to get the windscreen wipers to park correctly. I also fitted a
self cancelling indicator switch from a Renault 5.
the major electrics and to allow for the remaining lights the fibreglass
body items were fitted. Around this time I made an appointment for
the car to be inspected a nice man from the registration office
turned up as arranged, had a 10 minute look at the car. He checked
the engine number and chassis number it was at this time that I
broached the question of retaining the donor car registration number.
He said there was no problem I could retain the original number
I was delighted.
obtained 5 alloy wheels from a Ford Capri and after fitting the
windscreen, seats etc. it was ready for a test drive (illegally
up and down our cul-de-sac). It had taken around 10 months to complete.
I arranged for an MOT at a garage in the next village and on the
day I took a very long route to the test station as this was the
cars first real drive. I was extremely pleased with the way the
car handled and was surprised on how comfortable the ride was. My
MOT test was the first after lunch so I didn't have to wait long.
I had to assist the guy doing the MOT as he couldn't fit in the
car. The test went smoothly and there was no problem. I got my certificate
all I had to do now was to take it to the licensing office to get
my road tax and then I would be fully legal.