Ricky Neinei King

'73 XA Falcon w/ Boss 260 conversion

42 posts in this topic

Time for a wee update!

I have started tackling one of the more involved jobs, the headers. I'm mostly done with the drivers side, and here is what we've ended up with.

539b8e10-576e-4f99-a72d-45999771d687.jpg

I started by cutting all four pipes most of the way through, leaving a sliver on the bottom half of each, allowing me to tuck the pipes in closer to the block and clear the strut towers. It became immediately apparent I was going to need to modify the longest pipe to tuck even closer still towards the block. Also apparent was the need to cut off the curved collector piece on the other end and spin it around, as it ended up pointing straight towards the drivetrain.

unnamed203.jpg

unnamed205.jpg

One major thing I was aiming for was to end up with headers stubby enough that we could simply unbolt the exhaust from them and be able to pull the motor out without the need to remove them. One part of this was cutting about half of the collector/reducer section off, just ahead of the O2 sensor bung, pushing the new two bolt flange forward enough to clear the steering components. To be fair it actually doesn't look like it would be TOO much of a nightmare to install/remove them with the motor in place but it's still gonna be awesome to be able to leave them on regardless.

unnamed204.jpg

Seen here is the pipe that use to run dead straight from exhaust port to collector. It is a slight challenge to weld a pipe that is almost touching another like this, but there are tricks around this, it isn't gonna be a big deal thankfully.

unnamed%201.jpg

239fb631-b51b-40c4-8247-dc0e734f5b4d.jpg

And finally, here is the first of eight slivers I have to make from scratch to finish in the job. I simple made a paper template that would fill the hole, cut it out of 1.5mm sheet metal, and shaped it to fit by hand using a vice, hammer, and various round things found in my garage that were the right size. Eight of these will be a boring pain in my ass but the end result will work great. For the time being, at least, re-purposing the factory headers will save hundreds of bucks and dozens of hours from not having to start from absolute scratch.

I think if we are ever to make new, 'full length' headers from scratch, I will be looking at steering rack conversion options as the factory steering box and its arms severely limit the space full length headers would have to squeeze through. Full length headers on a Boss powered XA can and have been done before without a rack conversion but required a compromise on the routing of the pipes.

There will be many more detailed pics of the headers actually in place coming in the next couple of days. I finished the gearbox mount enough that the drive train is now completely bolted in but got sick of that job and decided to move on to the headers and will finish the gearbox mount later when I can be fucked getting back to it :P

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Mini update!

DSC02184.jpg

DSC02185.jpg

We were worried the BA shifter was gonna be too tall to fit nicely in the console, turns out it just manages to fit mint :lol:

DSC02186.jpg

We will certainly try to get the front 5mm higher but the firm motor mounts should mean there is just enough tolerance to not rub. As usual, 1000 more photos will come of exactly what fabrication I've done under here.

Dad was shitting himself when I began chopping up the console but we really needed to make the BA shifter work to retain the tiptronic function of the shifter. Ye of little faith!

gerg, deankdx, slydog and 3 others like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

DSC02187.jpg

Hours of picking the wiring apart, ready for a complete reshuffle... Thankfully its dads bitch job, not mine :lol:

DSC02189.jpg

DSC02190.jpg

DSC02192.jpg

Accelerator pedal in position. Positioned high enough that it's difficult to snag your shoe when trying to whip your foot onto the brake in a hurry.

These BA accelerator pedals have a strangely small amount of travel. The sheet metal I've bolted to is a liiiittle bit flimsy but putting in a proper back stop behind the pedal should mean its impossible to actually apply pressure on the mount. May make spreader plates to replace the penny washers pictured for good measure anyway.

deankdx, gerg, Valvebouncer and 1 other like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

DSC02198.jpg

DSC02199.jpg

DSC02201.jpg

ECU mounted. BA's have these in the engine bay from factory, all well and good until you want to remove everything possible from your 'bay to clean it up, luckily there was enough length on the engine loom for us to do this without cutting and extending any wires.

DSC02195.jpg

Shaved off a bunch of the ignition barrel's bulky flanges to slimline it as much as possible, we knew wherever this ended up was gonna be tight.

DSC02196.jpg

This little box and that weird copper winding wrapping around the end of the barrel is the security part of the setup. No idea how it works but as previously mentioned, we are happier keeping this and running a second key for extra security rather than spending a couple hundred bucks removing it from the ECU.

DSC02203.jpg

DSC02205.jpg

DSC02206.jpg

DSC02207.jpg

DSC02208.jpg

DSC02210.jpg

Also made this funky wee bracket. It uses the same bolt that mounts the bottom section of the dash to the chassis, leaving the dash and everything else unmodified. We ended up choosing this location because everywhere else it could possibly go had an undesirable compromise of some type or another. Where it is now feels super comfortable and natural to use from the drivers seat.

Where the barrel is now can be spotted by anyone looking hard enough, and we played with the idea of putting it somewhere else completely out of sight, but every option that achieved that made it quite the bastard to actually use. We came to realize that hiding it completely was pretty pointless as any prospective thieves finding this thing won't help them take the car - between two key barrels, an alarm/immobilizer, a GPS, a battery kill switch, a well hidden ignition kill switch or three, the car very rarely being parked anywhere other than dads garage, and this type of car not likely to be targeted by thieves here in NZ (they are all after 90's Jap cars here), anyone that manages to take the car probably bloody deserves it, and whatever the insurer ends up valuating this car at might well buy dad a coupe project anyway, hah!

Next up is mounting the two fuse boxes under the dash, finishing the shifter mount, making a hump in the floor for the starter motor clearance, starting the shock tower notches, finishing the headers... suffice to say we still have a few busy months ahead but for now we're happy enough progress is being made I guess :lol:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Awesome work!
The ef-bf ignition barrels are reknowned for the back plate coming out and all the guts falling out. I’d run a few screws through the side while you have it out to secure it so it never gives you problems. That was Fords fix for the fg and they are faultless.

gerg and Ricky Neinei King like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
11 hours ago, Valvebouncer said:

Awesome work!
The ef-bf ignition barrels are reknowned for the back plate coming out and all the guts falling out. I’d run a few screws through the side while you have it out to secure it so it never gives you problems. That was Fords fix for the fg and they are faultless.

Chur for that mate! I noticed the back plate seemed to be trying to fall out, now I know it actually will, I'll be sure to get onto that asap ^_^

DSC02212.jpg

DSC02213.jpg

DSC02216.jpg

DSC02220.jpg

DSC02221.jpg

Starter notch whipped up quick smart. The photo showing the clearance makes it look way closer than it actually is, theres plenty of room. Obviously made a fair attempt at keeping this hump as sleek as I could to minimize how much in encroached on the foot well. Main thing is to make absolutely sure the power terminal can't possibly touch and set the car on fire ;)

Valvebouncer and bear351c like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

DSC02223.jpg

Seems I'm having one of those rare days where everything is falling into place so smoothly it's keeping me in the mood to keep going and going. Hopefully I haven't just jinxed it :lol:

Time for a much dreaded shed clean, then onto prepping the tower notches so the motor can come out. Looking forward to tackling the sump, I'm fairly set on the idea of winging it either side for more capacity, and have decided to shift the pickup forward because why bloody not do it once and do it right. 

deankdx, Valvebouncer, Thom and 2 others like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As far as the duel key thing goes we are planning something similar for mums coyote powered 55 cuzzo, when the donor mustang was unloaded from the container the barrel was seized, when I tried to start it I pulled the back off the barrel so I could just turn the switch independently of the barrel, while doing this I found it would only start with the key in the seized part of the barrel, so our plans are to mount the mustang switch to the customline ignition barrel while hiding the seized up mustang barrel somewhere so the key can be pulled out and its immobilized

Valvebouncer and gerg like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 7/25/2018 at 7:52 AM, Thom said:

As far as the duel key thing goes we are planning something similar for mums coyote powered 55 cuzzo, when the donor mustang was unloaded from the container the barrel was seized, when I tried to start it I pulled the back off the barrel so I could just turn the switch independently of the barrel, while doing this I found it would only start with the key in the seized part of the barrel, so our plans are to mount the mustang switch to the customline ignition barrel while hiding the seized up mustang barrel somewhere so the key can be pulled out and its immobilized

Sounds like a good solution! Keep things simple huh ;)

If anyone has been wondering why updates have slowed, its because I have scored a job! Since before the start of this thread I've been a jobless bum, waiting to find a job I would love to go to every week instead of choosing any old job just to pay the bills. I'm now working in a rather large workshop that primarily specializes in American classics, although they are happy to take on any car anyone brings in. They do a little bit of everything, and obviously I've been employed there as a fabricator, all of my fabrication tools have been dragged there with me intending to take the odd tool back home here and there as I need them.

DSC02231.jpg

I'm hoping to smash out the majority of the chassis work on the XA over the next week, especially this weekend. Tonight's mission is to complete the shifter mount, and Sundays mission is to finalize the headers and start the tower notches.

DSC02232.jpg

The bottom of the BA shifter has ended up just a few mill above the factory tunnel.

DSC02233.jpg

Seen here is a slice of tunnel I've cut out to give the top of the slush box more clearance.

DSC02234.jpg

And seen here is a bit of old exhaust I've re-purposed as a hump. The flat sheet metal surrounding it is a flange that will allow me to seal the cabin from the elements by sandwiching a gasket of some description under it.

Looks pretty oddball at the moment, but it will end up looking like a fancy wee unit I'm sure. The reason I have made the hump so large is to allow me to route the BA shifter cable through it easily. I'm happy enough with how it looks cosmetically because all of this will be hidden under the center console, never to be seen again anyway!

Over the next week I'll probably take a few photos of my new workplace for you guys, if my new boss doesn't mind me plastering a few photos on the 'net. The sheer range of eye candy around the place will have you guys drooling, there are some super cool cars there constantly, from hotrods to American muscle cars, Aussie muscles, the odd modern day super car, a few bikes, etc etc. If there is an appropriate place on this forum for me to document my work there, someone let me know, I'll start a thread showing both my work there and the work of my new work mates ^_^

Valvebouncer, Thom, deankdx and 2 others like this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now