My plan today was to have another go at the aero screen brackets, finish the interior trim and fit the seats.
Aero screen brackets, take 2
I had wondered if the reason I couldn’t fit the LHS bracket was because of pressure on the panel from the windscreen frame, so I removed the 4 bolts and lowered it out of the way.
Still no joy fitting the bracket, though; it resolutely refused to slide in. I switched to the RHS instead to see if it was the same issue, and although that bracket did fit easily, the holes didn’t align with the holes in the bodywork.
At this point, rather than keep struggling with them, I decided to just give it up as a bad lot, and go without the brackets. I don’t have any plan to fit an aero screen, and I was concerned about causing unnecessary damage to the car. If I do fit one at any point in the future, it’ll be a bigger job, so I may get some outside help.
Fortunately, the windscreen fitted back on easily with no issues and I changed focus to the interior panels.
Knee trim panels and fuse box cover
Derek’s guidance to just drill new holes became even more obvious once I marked up where the holes in the knee trim panel are relative to where the interior panel is pre-drilled. The holes were not even close.
It was fairly easy to drill the new holes, site the rubber strip that sits between the two panels, and hold everything in place with a couple of screws. Fitting the self-tapping screws themselves took some effort, however. It became a test of whether the chassis, screw or screwdriver bit was the weakest element. I did get them all fitted eventually, but at the cost of two broken screwdriver bits, and 2 damaged screws. Rather than leave 2 holes, I just riveted the rearmost one on either side instead. They will need to be drilled out if I ever have to take the knee panels out, but not a big deal.
With the knee trim panels installed, the fuse box cover just slots in and is held in place with some sticky pads – a very quick job.
Padded carbon race seats
Final job today was to fit the carbon race seats, starting with the fixed passenger seat. The first challenge was to work out which of the supplied bolts was required as the pack listing in the instructions is different to what is supplied, but a quick Google search revealed it’s fairly simple.
The two aluminium brackets bolt directly onto the seat, and then 4 bolts are passed up from underneath the car into the brackets.
A dummy fit revealed a problem, however. One of the brackets did not line up with the pre-drilled hole in the floor cleanly, and I wasn’t able to move the seat enough to get a bolt through.
Out with the drill to slightly widen the holes, and on the 3rd or 4th attempt (with a small adjustment each time), all four bolts passed through, and the seat was bolted in
The driver’s seat was a bit more complicated, as it has adjustable runners, and it took a bit of trial-and-error working out to get these and the mounting bolts fitted in the right order . The driver’s seat attaches differently, with four bolts protruding down from the seat through the holes, secured underneath the car by nyloc nuts.
Fortunately, the seat lined up perfectly with the holes in the floor this time, and slotted through.
One small issue: with the seat fitted, the forward/back adjustment didn’t want to cooperate (it was fine before installation). The handle runs very close to a chassis member in the floor which is limiting movement. I suspect this just needs to be bent a bit to shape, but I’ll ask Caterham to do that at the PBC.
A quick test of the seat showed it is in a good position currently anyway, but it would be nice to be able to adjust if required without removing the seat.
Although they look very rigid, the seats are surprisingly comfortable. I chose them when I was speccing the car because they seemed a good combination of race seat with comfort for longer journeys. They are cosy around the hips though; an incentive to keep the weight off!