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Bob's Classic Roadster Jaguar SS100 (Duke) Replica

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Here are some pix of our Duke.

1. A promo picture of it from the Barrett-Jackson auction. Don't know what Dream Machines refers to or what the price is based on. Nobody paid anywhere near that. Also, they listed it as a '39 but the picture shows '37.

B-JJagphoto.jpg

2. Front view of Jag after clean-up and new tires.

Jagfrontview.jpg

3. Rear view. Someone mentioned putting a classic suitcase on the rack. I couldn't find one at the thrift shops but did find this aluminum covered replica trunk pretty cheap. Don't know if it adds or detracts from the overall look?

Jagrearview.jpg

4. On a whim, I entered the Jag in a local car show last summer. I got a 2nd place ribbon in the "exotics" class.

Jagatshow.jpg

... this is the one that got the 1st place trophy

Winner.jpg

Kind of hard to top that.

Just a couple of things I have noticed. Regarding clearance and body height, the distance from ground to lowest point on the bottom of a running board on my car is 8" on the driver side and 8 3/4" on the pass. side. Gotta check why the difference.

I have seen three different sizes of headlight "can" housings on replicas. Mine are medium size, 9 1/2" OD. Some are old single large headlamp size and some are huge, like 12" diam.

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I thought I would start my own topic on my particular SS100 repli-car. I have benefited a lot from Bruce's project and will leave his topic for his ongoing work and upgrades. I will repeat some of what I posted on that thread to make this cohesive.

B-JJagphoto.jpg

The earliest picture of our Jaguar from the Barrett-Jackson file. Sign says 1937. Classic Roadsters promoted it as a '39. The basis of the price is unknown--about six times what we paid.

Our Classic Roadsters Ltd. (CR) Jaguar SS100 replica, aka "The Duke", is circa mid 1980's. It is built on a late '70's or early '80's Chevy Chevette donor with the CR custom frame. The engine is an Isuzu G161Z 1.6L SOHC which was rated at 65 hp with the Holly 2bbl carburetor. It has a 4-speed transmission with Chevette rear axle and suspension. I have yet to determine if the front axle assembly is Mustang II or Chevette or other. The car was won on an eBay auction in October, 2012. It was inspected at the seller's shop in Long Beach, CA, and shipped to our Parker, CO, residence. While the car was in fairly good physical and mechanical condition, I had quite a bit of professional mechanical work done to get the fuel system and engine cleaned out due to the car having been in storage about four years prior to our purchase. Also done were front end repairs, new belt and hoses, cooling system flush, adjustments, etc. There are two remaining items to work-- a carburetor rebuild or replacement, and a developing driveline noise. I had to carefully remove a lot of "coastal frost" corrosion from all the chrome, but there was no deep rust. I polished and waxed the body. The chrome edging that was put around the fenders was coming off, so I just removed it as it wasn't in keeping with the original style. I also replaced the very old whitewall tires with new blackwalls of a narrower profile to give it that old "skinny tire" look. The walnut wood dash finish was peeling, so I sanded it down to bare wood and applied a wax coat. The car has a folding convertible top with boot and side curtains that are in very good condition given their age.

History: I did not receive any manuals or other documentation with the car. The seller had purchased the car in 2004 at the Long Beach Barrett-Jackson auction as a gift for his father who drove it around Long Beach until he was no longer able to drive, about 2008 or '09. The seller reacquired the car, did some clean-up and maintenance on it, and put it on eBay. There was an Oregon title issued to an estate in 2003, presumably to be able to sell the car. One can only assume that a prior owner lived in Oregon, his estate disposed of the car, and it somehow got transported to California where it was auctioned through Barrett-Jackson to our seller. To register the car in CA, a permanently affixed VIN plate was required. While there was a CR VIN on the prior titles, Classic Roadsters did not put a VIN marking on the car. The seller riveted a VIN plate from a wrecked car to the Jag firewall, so it was and is registered officially as a 1959 Austin. Finally, I can't say for certain but I strongly suspect that our Jag was a factory build rather than a customer built kit car.

And so the story begins...

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Good show. I had split out the first post, and so I merged it into this thread.

I have been trying to decide what to do about the chrome edging -- mine either needs replacement or to be discarded also. How does it look without?

The auction mentioned a dash plate -- Can you post an image of the plate on the dash?


Bruce

2016 Cadillac ATS-V gray/black; 2013 Cadillac ATS 2L Turbo Premium (Wife's)

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I have been trying to decide what to do about the chrome edging -- mine either needs replacement or to be discarded also. How does it look without?

Bruce, if you look at my rear quarter and car show pix, those are without the chrome edge trim strips. I can try to get a better shot later.

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And as I posted some of the literature photos again to pin them in this form I see that they did NOT have that trim. Interesting. I may go trim free in this regard as well.

I was considering replacing the trim, or having it painted on.


Bruce

2016 Cadillac ATS-V gray/black; 2013 Cadillac ATS 2L Turbo Premium (Wife's)

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I had to refinish the dash because the original varnish was peeling. Bruce, I don't know of a dash plate that you asked about. There is an auxiliary panel below the dash for the radio and heater/defrost controls.

1. Before (a)

DashB1.jpg

You can see some of the frost corrosion on the steering wheel. Extra fine steel wool and polishing compound and it looks acceptable now though not up to concours quality. Good enough for the casual eye and for me.

2. Before (B)

DashB2.jpg

I spent many hours sanding the dash in place because I was too lazy (and ignorant about disconnecting everything) with a catch cloth in my lap until I got down to bare wood and fine finish sanding and steel wool polish. I just used Johnson's paste wax for the final treatment. Looks great on the walnut veneer.

3. Final result.

DashAfter.jpg

I really didn't want a radio and it didn't work anyway, but I needed to keep the aux. panel for the heat controls, and the Realistic AM/FM cassette unit was kind of old school looking. So I kept the face plate and controls for now but there is empty space behind. Don't have to worry about some fool stealing the radio 'cause there ain't none.

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I must have gotten it confused with another car I saw online; that one the blurb said 'the dash even says it used to belong to a Duke' or similar lol.


Bruce

2016 Cadillac ATS-V gray/black; 2013 Cadillac ATS 2L Turbo Premium (Wife's)

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I have a 4-speed manual transmission, so CR put in a Volkswagen pedal set (beetle or bus?). There is very little foot space down there so I have to drive wearing my narrow opera pumps or some booties my wife knit for me. My running shoes are just too wide to avoid hitting two pedals at a time.

Pedals.jpg

There is a plethora of defroster hoses (4 outlets), but the heater is nice for top-down driving in our typically cool climate.

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Thinking about getting a pair of plus fours and knicker stockings to go with my black narrow shoes. What else? White shirt, vest, tweed cap, and driving goggles.

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THE PROBLEM. So, I have mentioned a developing driveline noise. I have driven the Jag about 600 miles since we got it. I once ran it on the freeway at 60-65 mph, but mostly drive it around town, up to 45-50. I have worked all the initial issues and it starts and runs pretty well. But there is an increasing grinding noise coming from underneath in the differential or drive shaft area. I had the joints checked and a mechanic changed the diff. fluid and checked out the axle and bearings and said everything seemed OK. Still no help, so got another opinion. The last shop took the differential housing extension off and sent it to a driveline specialty shop, but they sent it back with little explanation other than they couldn't fix it.

The Chevette had this rear configuration...

ChevetteAxlePic.jpg

There is this rigid extension from the differential housing. My car does not have what looks to be a mounting bracket shown by the red arrow, so it would seem the assembly may not be mounted as it should be. I think the problem may be in the area circled where there is a bearing that may be going out and causing the grinding noise.

Here is a cross-section of the extension...

RearAxleExtension.jpg

Where they show the rubber cushion, the car builder put in what looks like spray foam that is semi-rigid. I am thinking that lacking the center support and perhaps proper protection and/or retention of the bearing might be at issue here. As soon as we get some decent weather (snowing today on Mother's day--Springtime in the Rockies!!!), I have lined up another mechanic who has looked at these pictures and believes he can make it right. Fortunately, the previous two did not even charge me for their fair time even though they turned out to be fishing expeditions. Hope third time is a charm. Anyone ever come across a rear axle set-up like this? Really, lots of the mechanics now weren't even born when Chevettes were build.

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Actually that rear suspension configuration is pretty good for a live axle, with long trailing arms on both sides, and a matching extension on the differential with a center U-joint at the suspension flex point, and a pretty hefty anti-sway bar. I don't know how much of that is in the Duke, but it should be all of it, as you note.

The noise might be something as simple as the U-joint, or the bearing that holds the front drive shaft in front of the center U-joint.


CTS-V_Dashboard.jpg
-- Click Here for CaddyInfo page on "How To" Read Your OBD Codes
-- Click Here for my personal page to download my OBD code list as an Excel file, plus other Cadillac data
-- See my CaddyInfo car blogs: 2011 CTS-V, 1997 ETC
Yes, I was Jims_97_ETC before I changed cars.

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Is your car on leaf springs or using the Chevette coils and trailing arms.If it's on leaf springs and the center support bearing mounting is suspect,it would seem reasonable that the suspenion might be in a bind situation if your leaf spring front mount is not on the same pivot point as the center support bearing. I'm guessing the red circle on your diagram is the problem. Off topic ,but my son moved out to the denver area two years ago and just loves it out there,I need to visit him sometime. Rick


Rick

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I just looked under the car and compared it to the picture. It's all there, coil springs (not leafs), but minus the anti-roll bar. No roll bar at front either, but I haven't noticed any negatives to that. The car corners like a slot car racer. I suppose the spring rates, low C/G, and light weight work in favor. There is a healthy Panhard rod from the differential to the driver's side frame.

I seem to be mistaken about the attachment of the differential extension. There is a frame cross member and the extension support bracket looks like it is bolted to that. When it warms up (we're having late winter), I will jack the Jag up and take some pictures. Maybe somebody can help me identify the front end assembly too. The assembly manual talks about using the Ford (I suppose Pinto or Mustang2) front end. But as near as I can measure, my wheel bolt pattern is 4 x 100mm, and that was the Chevette pattern. That would make more sense (Chevette front end) because how would they put the smaller bolt pattern on a Ford front, unless the whole caliper and hub is interchangeable?

Edited by two2go

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As I understand it you could use your choice of donor chassis parts, Chevette or Pinto/Mustang II, and possibly others. I suppose that since these things were attached to the Duke frame rails you could put one type of chassis on the rear and another on the front. But since the steering, motor supports, and exhaust all are designed to fit together with decent operating clearances, it makes sense to me to use whatever comes with the engine in the front.

You don't need an anti-sway bar if the roll axis passes close enough to the center of gravity. That's not easy on a sedan where everybody expects to ride high and quiet so that they can be comfortable and look around, ergo stabilizer bars on most sedans.


CTS-V_Dashboard.jpg
-- Click Here for CaddyInfo page on "How To" Read Your OBD Codes
-- Click Here for my personal page to download my OBD code list as an Excel file, plus other Cadillac data
-- See my CaddyInfo car blogs: 2011 CTS-V, 1997 ETC
Yes, I was Jims_97_ETC before I changed cars.

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I found a couple of Chevette forums and have been reading through lots of posts. It looks like that bearing at the front end of the differential extension is actually held by a solid rubber "donut" (the rubber cushion in the drawing). I guess the design was to provide a bit of cushion for driveline lash and vibration. That's what we are going to explore when I can get the car into the shop. I also ordered a couple of shop manuals on eBay that hopefully will provide more insight.

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I found a couple of Chevette forums and have been reading through lots of posts. It looks like that bearing at the front end of the differential extension is actually held by a solid rubber "donut" (the rubber cushion in the drawing). I guess the design was to provide a bit of cushion for driveline lash and vibration. That's what we are going to explore when I can get the car into the shop. I also ordered a couple of shop manuals on eBay that hopefully will provide more insight.

Back in the old days... that was called a "Carrier Bearing"


Posted Image

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So Texas Jim, can you (or somebody) explain why GM would use this driveline design in a small low-powered car like the Chevette? I am talking about the extension tube from the differential which puts the rear-most U-joint more forward pretty much in a fixed position rather than having the U-joint at the differential and moving up and down with the axle? The whole rear end design with coil springs and trailing links and panhard rod, etc., would seem to be more complicated and expensive for a supposedly cheap-O car.

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Actually this is a pretty good suspension for a 1.6 liter street car. The SOHC version of the Isuzu engine used in the Chevette went with the GM T platform which was used by a variety of manufacturers worldwide. I think that the main things that were unusual with it were the use of a long extension of the differential to the carrier bearing, which avoided a second section for an exposed drive shaft, and the whole drive shaft became simpler than a two-section three-u-joing layout, thus good for a small car. I don't know about torsion stresses due to one wheel moving when the other doesn't, but that is a problem with any car using trailing links. The simplest solution is to allow the rear mount of one link to rotate while keeping the other solidly mounted to the axle. Thus a rear stabilizer bar would be the main thing controlling side-to-side differences in vertical motion.


CTS-V_Dashboard.jpg
-- Click Here for CaddyInfo page on "How To" Read Your OBD Codes
-- Click Here for my personal page to download my OBD code list as an Excel file, plus other Cadillac data
-- See my CaddyInfo car blogs: 2011 CTS-V, 1997 ETC
Yes, I was Jims_97_ETC before I changed cars.

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When I dig into my driveline issue more, I wil evaluate the stabilizer bar (why none or add one?).

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I agree with your feeling so far. When we started work on the front suspension I snapped the bolts for the front sway bar bushing. I drove the Duke without the front sway bar for months until as part of the rear spring repair Linear Automotive also fixed and re-attached the front bar. I didn't really detect much difference with or without -- perhaps as you say so tightly sprung anyway, or perhaps cause I never relly toss it into the Duke into a corner. It never seems to roll much.


Bruce

2016 Cadillac ATS-V gray/black; 2013 Cadillac ATS 2L Turbo Premium (Wife's)

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Another item. My Duke starts and runs OK, but could be better. I have tweaked the electric choke some, but starting and cold idle could be better. I have to goose the throttle continuously to keep the engine from stalling when cold, but the idle is plenty fast when warmed up good. I ran a couple of doses of strong fuel system cleaner through, which helped some. I suspect the carb could use a redo. No telling if the floats or anything else inside is set right or gummed up.

I am following this carburetor on eBay. As much as I can tell from the pictures, it looks identical to mine. It's claimed to be rebuilt, but not much else to go on. What does anyone think? I have ordered some Chevette service manuals, but won't have them in time to consult if I want to grab this for what seems to be a pretty good price.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/201089805046?_trksid=p2055119.m1438.l2649&ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT

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