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Mike.

Mike's Manta.

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Posted (edited)

Todays job was fitting the Daytona check Recaro seats,

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I found it easier to split the base frames from the seats, fit the frames to the floor pans then all it left was four M8 bolts on each seat to secure them into position,

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It took me all afternoon just to fit them, they are quite cumbersome to lift in and out, didn’t want to mark anything,

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Now she is looking like a Manta again,

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i see light at the end of the tunnel now, jobs still to do are:

• drivers and passenger door glass,

• drivers and passenger door cards,

• carpet to sill threshold plates,

• wiring looms are in but just need to connect them up in the right order,

• instrument binnacle and lower dash,

• kick panels and ECU,

• quad light sealed beam units.

• commission the refurbished engine before I try and start it, I’ll get my mechanic that reconditioned it to do these checks,

im sure there’s more but surely there can’t be much I have forgotten, all my boxes and cupboards are getting empty now which is a good sign.

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Edited by Mike.
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Yes Mike! - that looks great and the finishing line is clearly in sight now.

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First glance at the upper pic of your front end & I thought you'd fitted some really snazzy deep set crystal-ball looking lights reflecting the sky when its actually so clean & clear behind there. 

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It definitely wasn’t like that when I got it 3.5 years ago! As with most projects once you start digging you find more and more that needs done, the further I got into it I had invested a huge amount of time and effort and the only option was to do it right, as I don’t want to be visiting that area or issues again. Probably the best thing I did was to strip the Manta right back to the shell and put her on the roll over jig, that made access everywhere real easy. Welding and fabrication probably turned out better because of ease of the access. I’m quite keen to start polishing the Manta but I read online that it’s better to wait 30-60 days after new paint to let it harden. The Manta is very clean at the moment, engine bay and underside is as clean as the top, don’t know how easy this will be to keep her like this, but I’m going to try, I’m quite looking forward to polishing and cleaning the Manta instead of cutting, welding and grinding I think it will be a nice change. One thing is for sure I want to use the Manta, run her in nice evenings and weekends. I don’t want to have gone to all this work just to keep it in my garage never to see an open road again. Mantas is for driving 👍

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5 hours ago, Mike. said:

 One thing is for sure I want to use the Manta, run her in nice evenings and weekends. I don’t want to have gone to all this work just to keep it in my garage never to see an open road again. Mantas is for driving 👍

100% with you. Some weeks ago I realised I visited a lot of countries in Europe with the "400": Belgium, Germany,Holland, Denmark, Switserland, Austria, France and the U.K. Never on a trailer (To the UK some time on a boat😉) but after 2 friends had some severe damage on their cars (lucky they were very well insured) I am yet checking my insurance and monday the car will be valuated again.   So Mike a Manta that is as perfect as yours: Make sure you have a good insurance. 

 

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Both drivers and passengers door glass fitted tonight,

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it took me ages to get my bearings with arms, slides, bolts, adjustments and sitting right with the rubbers every time you close the door but eventually got there in the end,

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everything fell into place with the passenger side as I knew where everything went and what I was looking to achieve, was able to do it in half the time. Both doors now seal perfectly with the glass rubbers every time I  close the doors, quite happy with the results tonight.

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 Good progress again tonight, exterior black trim fitted on drivers door and B pillar louvres,

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same on passenger door,

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door cards fitted, interior handles latch and lock surrounds plus lower door seals,

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I feel quite lucky that no previous owners cut holes for speakers in the door cards, they make a big difference to the interior now they are fitted,

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front view now, apart from quad lights the exterior is just about complete,

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Still the Ariel to fit on the rear quarter, I’m going black mast to match the black trim,

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still wiring, lower dash and engine commission to do, my list is definitely getting smaller.

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I’ve said it before, but I will say it again Mike - she is a beautiful car, well done you!!

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If only.

Well at least my wheels look almost as good as yours

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Posted (edited)

I’m on holiday at the moment and subsequently there is no progress on the Manta, feet up and relaxing, so I have been looking through my vast collection of photos and came up with comparisons, or as close as I could find, here are some before and after shots,

before I got her home, sitting on a drive in Birmingham March 2016,

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 sitting in Gray and Adams Fraserburgh after the final coat of paint early June 2019,

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The first night I got her home, April 2016, totally unaware of what I had just taken on 🤣 but absolutely delighted with her, my first ever Manta,

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Sitting in my garage July 2019 after the glass and trims were refitted,

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Again the first night I got her home April 2016 and before I started the restoration, she was only in the garage one night before I started taking her apart,

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Sitting in the garage July 2019 awaiting the work done on electrics and quad lights, shouldn’t be long now till complete,

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Sitting on a drive in Birmingham March 2016,

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Sitting in my garage, July 2019, still waiting on ECU wiring, engine commission and radiator filling up,

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again sitting on a drive in Birmingham March 2016,

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Sitting in my garage July 2019,

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Sitting on a drive in Birmingham, March 2016,

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Sitting in Hatton Garage on the 2 post ramp December 2018,

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you would never guess I’m keen to get home from holiday and start working on the electrics and engine!!!

i like the comparison photos they really show progress.

Edited by Mike.
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Great photos Mike, have a great holiday!

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Hope you are going to use it and have some fun, i have had some great times in a manta, all fun! They really are a great car all round, very comfy for their age, think the recaros make them. 

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Yeh, a great seat for long journeys, or my body has been slowly moulded over the years to the shape of them, either way!, make the whole experience that bit more enjoyable and comfy

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What a build! Absolute stunner this is Mike

47 minutes ago, ®evo03 said:

Yeh, a great seat for long journeys, or my body has been slowly moulded over the years to the shape of them, either way!, make the whole experience that bit more enjoyable and comfy

I have had several Vectra GSi's over the years with recaro seats in - was a joke between me and a mate about getting 'Recaro back' when you got out of the car after a long journey and felt stiff as a board :lol: 

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Started on the work to connect up the wiring looms, I’m getting help from a friend who knows his way around Manta looms, as I wouldn’t have a clue 😁 all wiring in the boot has been done, rear light clusters, courtesy boot light, fog light, fuel tank sender and rear screen de- mist. Front quad light wiring have been started, bumper off, black trim off, metal light holders removed and 5 3/4” sealed beam units fitted. The White irmscher surrounds were a tight fit over the glass, a coating of vasalene over the metal retaining rings helped them locate fully home in the bezels.

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inside the engine bay the pump for the washer jets has been plugged in, as has the oil pressure sender, brake fluid resivoir, wiper motor, front indicators and horn.

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still some way to go with the wiring, all the interior electrical work and instrument binnacle and ECU still to do. Again the front of the Manta has changed, fitting the lights now finishes off the exterior. At this stage there is no rush now, trying to trace and find colour codes, relays, fuses, switches, changing from standard square headlights to quad lights etc can all be time consuming but definitely a rewarding and productive day. 

 

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Not far to go now Mike!

She's a real head turner, isn't she?

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Opel got the styling, colour scheme and interior trim spot on back in 1985 and Irmscher adding a few nice features 👍

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59 minutes ago, Mike. said:

Opel got the styling, colour scheme and interior trim spot on back in 1985 and Irmscher adding a few nice features 👍

Spot-on! You have done an amazing restoration on this one!

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Spent most of Sunday concentrating on the Manta electrics, the mot ran out in August 1999 so hasn’t run since then, the electrics were all disconnected when I got her so now all I can do is start with the basics, good earths, tests, tracing wires, connect and try, 

I have changed from the standard square lights to Irmscher quads so some adapting of wires was required, now we have side lights, dip and full beam, 

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We also have, interior light, wipers, window washers, boot interior light, number plate light, tail lights, brake lights and fog light.

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Slow work but definitely heading in the right direction, some things you can’t rush, electrics is definitely a slow process when you have to start from scratch with very little labelling.

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It's coming along nicely! Has it been fired up as yet? or is that still to come? Definitely one of my favourite Manta's of the recent crop of restorations. 

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Thanks Monaco Blue,

its just the basics of wiring so far then I’ll tackle the ECU Loom, then get my mechanic to do final checks on the engine and start it (compression tests, fluids etc) I still have this to look forward to. Just getting the lights to work yesterday felt like a big win and for the first time I actually felt as if there is life in her again, so I can’t imagine how I will feel when I hear her start up for the first time in 20 years.............can’t wait :thumbup 

to be honest the help I have been given from the members on here has been brilliant, for instance at the moment I’m working off of a screenshot of the Manta fuse box cover with a sticker on it handwritten, translated into English, saves a lot of time, another OMOC member who specialises in Manta electrics is doing the work for me, I’m just there learning and helping out. He wired the quad light conversion just straight out of his head, no wiring diagrams or books. I appreciate the help, without others knowledge and offers of help restoration jobs would be a lot harder.

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Another productive day on Saturday wiring the Manta, new fuel pump wired and plumbed in, i also got the indicators, hazards and reversing lights working, brown plug on ECU loom changed over to a new one as the lugs had become brittle and snapped off, I expected this to be a hassle to do but the new one from edelschmiede fitted perfectly didn’t even need to cut the wiring, just swapped out the plastic plug casing.

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Ran in the ECU loom, plugged them in. Temporarily fitted the dash binnacle and tested gauges and instrument lighting, few bulbs to change there. Got the heater fan working on both speeds high and low. Fitted all silicone hoses in engine bay ready to be filled. The wings you can see are protected with old sheets to prevent marking the new paint.

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im now ready to do the engine commissioning checks then get her started, just need to confirm a date with my mechanic who built my engine for me, he says after all his hard work rebuilding the 2.0E cih he doesn’t trust me to start it the first time myself...........I tend to agree with him there 😀

Edited by Mike.
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Superb Mike, the big day is close!!

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