Sunday, February 27, 2011
For Sale...1950 Morris J Van LHD (not really)
I had some hinges cast from samples given to me last year. In November I dropped them off a Talvan, a machine shop recommended to me by the foundry. Well, three months go by and and the friggin' hinges haven't been machined. "Sorry, I didn't have time" Mark Fialkowski owner of Talvan Machine Shop (604-312-4691) told me yesterday when I stopped by to pick them up. Bullshit. You had them for 3 months! You simply didn't care to be honest with me at the outset and you didn't do it. Mark's a young guy, and that's good. It means I have many years ahead of trying to kill his business. Because the Talvan shop was close to Aaron's shop, I thought I stop off there and thereby avoid another trip on Saturday.
When I last left the van, the rear side windows were about to be closed in. Aaron had bought the metal. I was hopeful that this had been done and I wanted to see it. However, this wasn't the case. Instead, The Dude tried to fit the rear doors -- the one that had been there for the past five months -- only to determine that the inner pressed section wouldn't fit. To make them fit he cut the top off the rear cross member and made in shorter. In doing so, though, the outside diameter of the rear lights could no longer fit on the exposed surface. I had brought a sample light out there and a drawing showing how I proposed they fit. He didn't get the light, look at the drawing or talk to anyone. He just cut. The upshot is that I had an expectation that we would have progressed on the project in the past week and, instead, we regressed. The side windows need to be closed in yet; the floor has to be put in place, the fenders all need to be repaired, the engine cowl needs to be fabricated, the internal structure to support the engine has to be done and the hole in the roof needs to be closed. That's a lot of effort, and I've already exceeded the amount quoted to me by all the other shops I asked to do the metalwork. Thus I told Aaron this week to slow down the pace.
While at Aaron's shop I examined the rear doors that Fairmile sent me. Above is a photo that shows a piece of wood (not the only one) jammed into the door and used to ensure a "proper" contour for the rear doors. Aaron nearly peed himself laughing at it. I guess it's a technique that's an option when you client doesn't live close enough to come over and kick you you in the head. On the way home from Aaron's shop I was beating against Friday afternoon traffic. It took me an hour to get home and the whole way I though about the project. For the first time I have genuine misgivings about starting it. I tried to think about what my life would be like without it, what my family, the friends and other would think if I the in the towel now. Then, I thought about what I would think about myself. Honestly, I'm not good at finishing things. Soemone sent me an email when I started this project -- I think it might have been Lou -- that said "enjoy the process..." I've tried, but right now, I'm not.