Electric / Turbine Powered Rover MGF - (14)

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I have obtained some silica cloth and wrapped it around the exhaust section to help reduce the internal temperature when the engine is running and boot lid closed. It is rated to 1000 degC and has a peak of 1100 degC, I don't expect the exhaust to reach anywhere near these temperatures, more like 3-400 degrees, but it's nice to know it's well protected.

The exhaust has also had some guide plates welded in at the exit, (thanks to Paul at SDF) these will reliably direct the gas flow upwards and stop any warping that may occur along it's exit length.
A view of the stainless steel powder coated exhaust plate which has now been fixed in to place using PU adhesive, I think it's starting to look quite nice now, jobs a goodun.

A nervous time, it's time to go and try and get an MOT. As I am not allowed to take the car on the road it will have to be trailered and as it's not exactly a trip down to the shops to get this done I have called in a favour from my mate Rick. Rick has kindly offered (after being bought a pint) to tow the trailer to the testing station for me with his Landy.

The MOT test was carried out by a fellow gas turbine collector and project builder Lee Dennick, fortunately all went well and after a couple of rear light bulbs were replaced an MOT certificate was produced - Thanks Lee!
Fanfare please! Obtaining this UK Tax Disc means that I can now legally drive the car on UK roads. To be fair I was expecting the re-classing of the vehicle to be a bit of a nightmare, but was guided by a very helpful lady at the DVLA office. She did mention that the DVLA legal team may or may not yet intervene, but I believe the signs are good. This is ultimately the result I wanted.

And this is the result I didn't want!
Sh1t happens apparently. During the first road drive the Differential seized leaving me stuck on the side of the road. To add insult to injury, the offside drive shaft had to be cut to allow the car to be towed home. On closer inspection of the Differential after a strip down it became apparent that it had no oil and to be fair was probably in a failing state when it was purchased from ebay about two years ago, a lesson learnt I think.

Fortunately I had a spare Differential ready to be fitted that has come from the Mazda Eunos Electric Car that I am currently making, the downside being that it has a flange type fitting rather than the shaft type that the failed Differential used. So time to make more drive shafts. A pair of MGF shafts arrived quickly that were ordered form eBay and are perfect for the adaption, the MX5 Diff shafts arrived and are wrong. The shaft flanges have a PCD of 70mm, where the Diff has a flange PCD of 80mm, more money wasted. I'm feeling a little down, especially as my day to day car has also just broken down, I currently own three cars and none of them work at the moment. Thankfully my mates at SMD will weld the shafts as a favor, this takes the pressure of me a little bit.

Whilst the Diff and Drive Shafts were being made, it became an opportunity to have a tidy up of the wiring and make some modifications to the control box. I have also modified the way the engine starts and have taken away some of the control that the computer had over the engine due to ongoing corrupt USB data signals which were causing time delays and random actions.

As an additional safety modification I have added a vacuum switch under the bonnet that will flag a warning in he cab should the brake vacuum level fall below a set threshold, probably the most important warning out of them all.

After the sucsessful road test's that we had at the weekend it was now time to look at at ways of improving performance and efficiency, the main thing that can be done is to reduce the EGT. The engine running with zero load was producing an EGT of around 350DegC with the boot lid closed, with the engine running and the boot lid open it went down to 310DegC. Just as we have always suspected, we need more ventilation in to the engine compartment,. This has now been achieved by cutting two holes in to the boot lid where the metal is only one layer thick.

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