Restoration diary / 12-12-2004

12-12-2004 >> Modified, upgraded heater, added air intake, work on rear left door.

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12-12-2004 - The blower in the standard heater for the Van doesn't do a very good job. Newer Mini's have a plastic housing with a blower with two fans. It does a better job, but doesn't look as good as the metal housing. So the plan was to modify the metal housing so it could contain the blower with two fans.

Here you see the metal housing, extended on the left to create the second air intake. You can also see that even the parts inside the Van are far from rust-free.

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12-12-2004 - The new blower is very wide and nearly fits the housing, so I had to move the original air intake to be completely on the outside of the housing. Also, the radiator of the newer housing needs waterholes on a different location.
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12-12-2004 - A peek on the inside. Pay attention to the amounts of rust here.
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12-12-2004 - On the left the new blower, on the right the original one. What I don't understand is that on the new blower, both fans are 100% identical. This basically means that one of the two is moving in the wrong direction. I did a few tests and the left fan delivers more air (with the fans turning to the right). The original fan is even more strange, as it only has one fan and *could* have been made correctly, but this one also turns in the wrong direction. If you look at the photo, the fan would normally turn towards the viewer. Either this is a pretty dumb design, or I'm missing something...
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12-12-2004 - Extension on the metal casing compared to the extension on the plastic housing.
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12-12-2004 - Air intake on the front, for the heater. The intake seems to hang backwards, but I just didn't have the camera level when I took the photo.
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12-12-2004 - Air intake from the other side.
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12-12-2004 - Brackets to connect the sub-frame and the brace-bars. Drilled holes to add a bit of lightness, but mostly for looks and to show skills... ;-)
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12-12-2004 - The bracket on the other side. I've never drilled such nice holes before...
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12-12-2004 - Started work on the rear left door. I bought two 'new' doors for the Van, but they weren't as good as I hoped. On this one I had to weld a couple of holes on the outside, replace the top and repair the bottom. On this photo you see the new top (taken from the original left door with a few repaired spots) welded in place. On top of the door the part I removed.
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12-12-2004 - Same story, but the inside of the door. It's hard to see on the photo, but the removed part was in a very bad shape.
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12-12-2004 - Repaired the inside of the bottom of the door.
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12-12-2004 - New bottom for the outside of the door. Still have to grind away the welds.
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12-12-2004 - Finally the garage (although this looks like a kitchen) has a computer. I'll use it mainly to play MP3's and CD's. In the (hopefully near) future I'll connect it to the Internet. Maybe I should add a web-cam... :-) Thanks to Werner and Mark for the free computer (a kick ass mind blowing hopping and whopping PII 266 ;) and 17" monitor!