Jaguar E-Type Upgrades

The E-Type was going in for its annual service and rego check, with the view to move from full rego to the new logbook based club rego system.

In addition, the braking problems that have plagued this car had re-surfaced on the drive back from Oberon.   Yet again, the brakes were not releasing properly.   I also noticed a fairly bad fluid leak after the British Car show from the front left caliper.

The front calipers had been re-sleeved before, but the seal was not quite the right size and so it was causing the brakes to hang up and not release properly.   Even more worrying, on further examination of the braking system, the front and rear brakes were reversed on the master cylinder.    This is not ideal because the system is supposed to provide bias to the front brakes (normally around 60-70% depending on the car) to stop the rears from locking up as the load is transferred to the front wheels during braking.    I’ve never had to do a real panic stop in the E-Type, but chances are the rear brakes would have locked up which can cause the car to loose control.

So to fix these problems a new brake pipe was installed so the brakes were installed correctly and the caliper was re-sleeved again with a new seal which will hopefully keep the fluid in and the brakes working correctly.

As well as this there was a fairly bad leak from the differential and the drive shaft coupling was quite worn.   Since the diff had to come out, it seemed like the right time to do a ratio change.   As my car was originally a USA car, it is fitted with a 3.54 ratio, whereas cars sold here in Australia were fitted with 3.07.    My car after it was restored was fitted with 3.07, but the previous owner put it back to 3.54 and now I am reverting it to 3.07.   First gear is particularly useless with 3.54.    While it was out the driveshaft coupling was replaced and the driveshaft painted up and re-installed.

One of the headlights was not working correctly either, so instead of putting in another useless sealed beam, the car is being converted to halogens with relays.   Not concours correct but much better and far safer if driving at night.

So far, I think the brakes are still not quite right.   The pedal pressure varies from being very soft to very hard which makes me suspect the master cylinder.

I am quite happy with the ratio change.  First gear is now quite a useful gear and acceleration is still brisk as you hold the gears for longer.

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