Studs, Shafts and Rubbers - Faine 442

By: Jon Faine

Presented by

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Jon gets all hot and bothered about studs, shafts and rubbers

I love my old car. I am nothing if not superficial,  but I want the relationship to be based on more than just physical attraction. There has to be something deeper to our bond than just how she looks. Beauty is good, but the appeal must be profound, the attraction more than on the surface. It is, after all, what is on the inside that makes any couple last. The 1926 B2 Citroen "Caddy" replica motor is being prepared for re-insertion into the cosy spot it has inhabited for nearly one hundred years. Before I commit I want to make it look somewhat prettier. When I bought the project there were some invoices suggesting that serious money was spent on the motors guts not that long ago. So I am only wanting her to have cosmetic embellishment.

The timing cover on the front has a deep scar, maybe from a lovers tiff some years ago. No doubt an emotional time, and there was an attempt at plastic surgery but remaining is an unsightly blemish. Nothing to do with function, just appearances. Can I love my B2 even though each time I cast my uncritical gaze over her my eye-line is drawn to a vivid reminder of her traumatic past?

Counselling has helped me understand the mental barriers that need to be overcome. I have had to learn to ignore the scar, to look at the real bond and to appreciate the depth of feelings underneath. But when it was suggested to me that there were other ways to rekindle my affection, I was all ears.

I found a replacement cover, and since it is only a cover it does not change the personality of what is underneath. It will make all the difference to how we relate. But the new cover had flaws and issues of its own to work out. And it was all because of an old stud. How often have you heard that line from a new flame?

The old stud - one of three in her past - would not go away. And was badly bent. And stuck fast. I uttered an ultimatum - it was either me or the old stud, one of us had to yield. Now separation is never easy and is often messy. The emotional damage is often greater than the physical, and then the financial cost is not easily put aside either. As is discovered in couples therapy for so many, this particular problem was where the shaft goes - the starting handle shaft.

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I tried all the usual tricks to get it off….  double bolts, gentle heat, soaking it in WD40…. nothing worked. I was contemplating running the white flag up a pole and calling in the cavalry when a friend recommended trying some potent magic to rekindle our relationship.

The magic comes in a can, and it is called ‘Inox". Now you may be falling off your chair laughing at this point, but this was as new to me as Tinder. But the results were spectacular. With just a few days soaking, the stud was extracted and the cover can now be polished and attached to the glammed-up motor.

In an unrelated by comically parallel universe I have not just been grappling with studs and shafts but with rubbers too. The rubber in the luggage rails on the Jaguar E Type have perished in their channels. Nothing worse than a split rubber when you are relying on it. I finally got around to replacing them, which requires scraping the old bits out of their 1969 chrome square section channel.

I created a special tool out of an old screwdriver, bending the shaft 90 degrees at the tip and sharpening the flattened point to make a specialised rubber channel removing tool. A formidable weapon, and much easier to grip than just any old screw driver or lever.

Fabulous for rubber…. and perfect for slicing a large chunk out of my little finger when it slipped.

So now my pride is wounded and I have a new scar of my own to match the timing cover. Small consolation is that the shaft will fit properly where it belongs and new rubbers will get back to rubbing - which is what all rubbers should be doing.

 

From Unique Cars #442, July 2020

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