Some great progress since I got the dashboard finally removed in the last article.

The clock that got sent off to Connecticut arrived safely (phew!) and has had its bionic (well, electronic) parts installed, and is now in the testing phase to make sure it loses (if any) an acceptable amount of time. Once that’s done, it will be shipped back to New Zealand ready for installation. I hate to jinx anything, but I think this will be the hold-up for the dashboard going back in.

Mike from sent me some photos of the work in progress, it’s certainly coming along. Can’t wait to have an actual operational British clock.

Dismantled…no going back now
With the new (reliable!) electronic circuitry installed
Synthetic oil being applied
Almost ready for the body
Done! Testing next, then send it back to New Zealand

Since ripping the dash out, I had a suggestion that this would be the best time to replace the 52 year-old wiring loom. I tossed this idea around – my wiring isn’t actually too bad, but the thought of having brand new wiring and connectors everywhere appeals.

In the end I found a company that makes wiring looms for lots of old cars, and for £280 delivered to New Zealand, it was a bit of a no-brainer. This is on its way now and should be here in a week. I’ve paid a little extra to include heavy wiring to the electric engine fan, so this doesn’t look added on (as it does now).

It’s not here yet, but it looks so much better than my existing loom

The centre console has been dropped off to my upholster guy for rejuvenating, and should be back in a week or so.

The rev counter and other gauges got dropped off too this week; luckily there’s a trustworthy place not far from me ( who do a great job repairing and cleaning gauges, and have done for decades.

While all this is happening, I’ve been busy laying down sound deadening/heat-deflecting mat. I am hoping that in summer, no longer will my feet and legs start to boil. It’s beyond uncomfortable, but understandable when there’s a cast-iron V8 inches from your legs. This is finished and I’m happy with the result – and can’t wait to test it out.

Another task crossed off the long list

As you can see in the photos, my new RHD dashboard from the USA arrived safely and in one wooden piece. Another ‘phew’ moment. Before the guys at CG Auto Wood sent it to me, I got them to add some wording, ‘Engine Fan’ to the dash. There’s already a spare hole in the middle of the switches, and that’s where I had my engine fan switch. So now they’ve added the wording to the new dash to match it up with the rest of the labels. Perfect and very factory-like.

The guys at CG Auto Wood carefully lining up the text
Artist at work here, people
Love that shine – what a difference

The new dashboard also includes a glovebox lid – previously there was just a hole for the glovebox, and this is how they came out from the factory.

Old and new – 52 years of convertible motoring has taken its toll

So it’s all on – hopefully the next article will be the reinstall! But I’m not hopeful, still lots of work to be done to get to the end result.

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Fred Alvrez
How on earth to start this? I've been car/bike/truck crazy since I was a teen. Like John, I had the obligatory Countach poster on the wall. I guess I'm more officially into classic and muscle cars than anything else - I currently have a '65 Sunbeam Tiger that left the factory the same day as I left the hospital as a newborn with my mother. How could I not buy that car? In 2016 my wife and I drove across the USA in a brand-new Dodge Challenger, and then shipped it home. You can read more on We did this again in 2019 in a 1990 Chev Corvette - you can read about that trip on DriveLife. I'm a driving instructor and an Observer for the Institute of Advanced Motorists - trying to do my bit to make our roads safer.


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