Bob Baines' Locust

I thought I would let you all know how my build is going and some of the history of my car.

The chassis was made in 1988, and the body tub was also started then by who I am not sure. The engine and gearbox that was put in it was a Rootes 1725 and the gearbox had an electric overdrive unit on it. Front suspension was Cortina and the rear axle was Escort Mk2.

I am led to believe that the original builder was building the car with a friend who unfortunately died, the car then ended up in the builders father's garage for I believe 6 years. the car was then sold to a lady who wanted to give her husband a hobby. He did not touch it for 10 years and it was left in a garage to slowly deteriorate.

It was advertised on eBay this March (2006) and I was lucky enough to buy it, I also bought a 2ltr Sierra at the same time for the engine and gearbox.

When I collected the car I had a close look at it and decided that I would do some radical work to it:
The engine and gearbox were removed and scrapped (no head, no crank, no pistons so it was a lump of cast iron ballast)
The rear axle was removed and sold
The front suspension went the same way.
The body was removed and the floor was found to be rotten, this was fully replaced.

The front suspension became double wishbone with Sierra hubs and disks.

The rear suspension is now independent rear using the Sierra diff and hubs, brakes etc all mounted on double wishbones.

The engine and gearbox 2.0 ltr DOHC were then fitted.

The EFI unit was cut off and I have put on RI motorcycle carbs.

Ignition is now Megajolt. The megajolt is a mapable system but I am having serious problems getting the basic figures for the bins from Ford.

Tomorrow is the day to start the engine........fingers crossed.

Dash is an electronic unit from Tifosi, a nice compact unit and not expensive.

Can I still call the car a LOCUST?

The body has gone away for painting, I have decided on a Citroen metalic blue.

Whilst the body was away all welds on the chassis were ground and then rewelded with a TIG set. The remaining bits of the parts I had cut off the chassis were then ground flat and then sanded, 3 coats of Hammerite smooth were then applied.

As the chassis dried I cleaned the engine and put another 2 coats of paint on it.

Now the time for assembly I have decided on an umbrella handbrake so that I dont have a problem with the original on my elbow. The donor for the handbrake was a Toyota pickup. I had to weld 2 pieces of steel into the chassis, 1 to hold the handbrake linkage and the other to hold the handbrake cables. Lots of copper grease went on the linkage pivot.

The fuel tank is a plastic one from MAC#1 and has the mounting rails fitted to the underneath. The tank comes with a swirlpot built in and baffles.

The engine and gearbox was then installed


The radiator has had to go in with the inlet and outlets facing forward to avoid a modification to the front chassis, this has also given me extra coolant in the system.

I am putting a couple of bleed nipples into the system too.

All wishbones have now been painted and will be fitted next week when I have taken a week off to build it up fully and book my SVA.

I should be having the body back for the weekend.

To be continued.............

















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