With a bit of a thick head in the morning, I decided it best to grab a coffee and bacon sarnie before I got to work. So around lunch time I managed to pluck up the courage and get stuck in to removing the remaining three panels - or at least I thought I could manage that!
The next logical panel to remove was the rear bulkhead. Some sixty odd rivets later I noticed there were three rivets tucked away in the corners near the wheel arches, and with no way of getting a drill in there, I made my new 'rivet removal' contraption. This consisted of a flat head metal handled screw driver which had a pretty sharp head on it and a metal hammer. I just lightly tapped off the rivet heads which was pretty easy with my lovely new tool!
|Tapping off the three edge rivets of the rear bulkhead using my 'bespoke rivet removal tool'|
|Three more rivets under tunnel cover|
With all the rivets from the rear bulkhead now removed, it was time to get the bulkhead out - easier said than done - at first... It appears that Caterham used some silicone to bond the bulkhead panel (along with a fair few rivets) and perhaps to provide a bit of waterproofing too. It seemed most logical to start at the bottom and gently using the claw of a claw hammer prised the bottom part of the bulkhead away from the lowered floors.
|Gently prising the underside of the rear bulkhead away with a claw hammer worked well|
|Top of bulkhead edges needed bending to free it from underneath the roll bar|
|Rear bulkhead panel removed, revealing the structure of most of the rear of the car|
So with three out of five panels removed, it was onto the final two, both of which I'd been dreading! Picture below shows me looking like I'm having a good time, but this was very fiddly due to the lack of space and I was not enjoying this part of the experience whatsoever.
|I'm having fun, I'm having fun - yeah keep telling yourself that Daniel!|
To be fair drilling out the first section before the crease (in the outer panel) was pretty easy, it's just when the space becomes limited is when things start to get tricky! It didn't take me long to find there was a severe lack of space and light in the drivers foot well, so after having my torch roll around whilst I'm trying to drill our rivets practically in the dark whilst squashed into the tiny foot well, I found another use for the accelerator!
|A new use for the accelerator!|
Having wrestled around for long enough I had a brain-wave which I wish I thought of earlier - remove the pedal box cover for some 'added light', and would you know it, yes this worked . Picture below is to show the light coming through from pedal box, but the panel is also removed at this stage.
|Removing the pedal box cover 'adds light'|
|The fourth interior panel is out - only one more to go!|
With the fourth panel out - I considered pushing myself and getting the final panel out, but I just couldn't face it, so decided it was time to calm down, and finish off for the day. More 'fun' tomorrow.