Hi, sorry you had a fail today, I had exactly the same issue and even after we jacked up the car we were still off so we painted the inside of the lenses to about half way which gave us an extra 25mm and the lights were still bright enough. Thanks
OK here goes - the points we failed on in case it's useful for others (remember, this is our first build). No excuses, but here we go-
RS3. Rear registration plate. The space on the back of the body for the plate is not big enough. It was a fail because we didn't make a permanently-fixed back plate (alloy or similar) to go behind the number plate of size 520 x 120 mm. No part of the plastic plate, it was explained to us, should be unsupported.
RS12. Our 'wing mirrors' were the right size but didn't extend far enough to see the required height and width beyond the rear wings. We thought we were OK but Stuart was right - you need some seriously absurd mirrors to pass or some massive long stalks.
RS1. Stupid this one. No anti-slip rubber on the brake pedal! Our fault and really annoying.
RS6a, RS11a. When we filled up with petrol for the test (they won't test without a full tank) and with our 14" wheels the indicators and the brake lights at the back were less than 350mm from the floor to the bottom of the lenses. We spent so much time making sure the reversing light and the rear fog lamp was over 250mm that we didn't check after we filled up with the other lights. This is something to be super-aware of. Using 15" wheels and bigger tyres will work. But just using standard 14" MX5 parts like we have made us shy by 23mm! And that's with new shocks.
RS6. The advice for the IVA form is to state that the axle weights for the front and rear of the car is 500kg for each. However, the front of the car is heavier than that and should be stated on all paper work as an axle designed to take at least 520 kg and probably should be nearer 600. The calculated IVA weight was 519.05KG. The rear was 442.95 kg. So a fail on that. We can sort this out by submitting a letter stating the amendment to the stated weight baring properties.
RS1. Fuel line markings missing. So we showed him our receipts for the fuel lines which clearly stated the required DIN numbers etc. He was OK with that.
RS2. Split pin missing from the front offside top suspension nut. Fair comment. Something we inherited and should have noticed.
RS7. Two small grommets needed on the fog and reverse wires. Also fair comment. Must've been a late night worrying about the fog light cancellation regime.
Many of these could have been sorted out on site (we took tons of stuff with us) but we knew we were going home. It's easy to sort out most of these but there'll be some head scratching over the light heights. We don't want to change the wheels and re-test all of that so some spacers are going to be needed twixt the sub-frames and the chassis. Maybe. We'll let you know.
Still. Could be worse. And everyone at the station loved the car. I think I still do. I'm sure I do. Really.
Sorry to hear that news but it is what I call a good fail. They usually allow the space for a number plate rule, common sense, we don't need a plate behind a plate. This was a rule that was introduced as Cobras had to cut a half round circle out of the plate to fit around the boot lock. Not an issue for us but easily rectified if that what this particular inspector requires for reasons best known to him. The other points are safety related and if there were no IVA scheme then there would be potential safety issues overlooked by builders of cars on the roads. I left a pinch bolt out of the rack once! The inspector spotted it thankfully. When using standard MX5 shocks and springs there is a massive pre-load. There is possibly enough thread on the top of the centre shaft to allow a temporary lift to solve your light issue, but be extremely careful if attempting to remove the nut without the car loading the springs. THEY FLY! Failing that longer 12mm bolts and a stack of washers may do the trick at the rear sub frame mount point. Failing that my preferred option is to use 15" wheels. Just have tools ready to pull the speedo needle off and re-position it if needed, shouldn't be required though. The free retest rules are not going to help in this case, but remember there is only a retest fee to pay regardless of what is to be retested, not the full fee again. mevltd.co.uk/mev/freeretest.pdf
Here is a rule that seems so obvious in retrospect....
If the wheels are connected to the shocks and the shocks are connected to the chassis and the body is connected to the chassis then no amount of messing about with the sub-frames will make ANY difference to the ride-height of the body. We spent three hours replacing the four M12s that bolt the rear sub-frame to the chassis with longer ones and then packing them out with 25mm of washers (80 in all) between the sub-frame and the chassis. To remind you, we need 23mm of extra height at the back for the rear lights to pass IVA. When off the stands and re-measured it was the same height as before - EXACTLY the same height as before. It's obvious really - if the top of the shocks were mounted to the sub-frame then we would have achieved our goal. But they aren't so all we have done is change the geometry of the rear suspension. But of course, the distance between the wheels and the chassis is exactly the same. What a frustrating and disappointing waste of time.
We have no room for adjustment on our new MX5 rear shocks.
We have bought and love our 14" MX5 wires.
Our speedo test was the most accurate the inspector had ever seen. It's tested at 35, 40, 50, 60 and 70 mph. Our read-out was 35, 40, 50, 59, and 70. He said it was a bit too accurate as it doesn't give us any lee-way. (He said he tested a new production car recently that read 70 and was actually doing 57 mph!)
Our test centre is a 200 mile round trip. We have to borrow a trailer from someone miles away and we can only test in the afternoons. No time to do any real modifications on site.
We spent days and folding money modifying and finishing our dash. The speedo is completely sealed, finished and inaccessible unless we pull the dash off and trash the cluster again.
Our tester would seem to be (let's say) 'thorough'. He doesn't seem to be a chap who would let us get away with painting half the inside of the lenses out. I maybe wrong - but can we afford to go all the way to Carlisle and fail again?
We could put bigger tyres on and hope he doesn't notice. But he said he'll be looking out for bigger wheels and will re-test.
By sticking with standard MX5 Parts throughout we thought we were doing exactly the right thing. Minimising the risk of not passing.
The only thing we can think of now is removing the shocks, drilling out the studs at the top, replacing with longer bolts and packing with something substantial between the shock and the chassis to depth of 23mm. With what, we don't know.
would it not be easier to lift the body rather than try to lift the chassis. Lifting the chassis on the subframes will mean you have to pack the top of the shocks and that will mean having some discs cut at a local laser firm. The body move maybe an easier answer. Failing that a set of trailer lights just for the test. Fround upon but not a fail point if they are secure and E marked. Fog and reverse min 250mm off the deck to the lowest part of the illuminated area.
I suspect a body lift is difficult for you as the floor (at least) and other areas are connected to the body AND the chassis.
As you'll appreciate from my other threads I am a bit of a novice when it comes to shocks but it struck me that adjustable shocks, providing they can get you the 23mm lift, might be the answer as you can simply use the shocks to give you the lift for the test and then adjust post test.
Thanks, once again, for the suggestions everybody. I just read my last post back and it sounded a bit churlish. Apologies - just frustrating.
Stuart. Thanks matey. Actually, lifting the body was our first thought but we would have to undo all the sills which are really tight and have no extra overlap to re-drill and attach plus we are reluctant to reconfigure the rear brackets now they are being used for the exhaust etc. Padding out the front if necessary would be easy I guess but the sills represent an issue.
R2S. Yes indeed. The sill/floor (and a few little wiring issues) make us think that raising the space frame would be better if possible.
Marmot0. I guess we all want to do this thing without drilling too many extra holes through the gel coat. I'd be happier to bang on some brackets/trailer lights if I knew I was going to re-spray. It was always the plan to go full Aston Martin original metallic (that's why DeBoRah is the colour she is, but, you know, things are totting up and we are not sure we can afford it so we don't want to drill when we don't have to.
I suppose we are all guinea pigs in a sense. One day there will be a definitive, predictable and elegant answer to this which doesn't necessarily mean cobbling together something in order to guarantee a pass. We are going to whip off the shocks at our weekly session on Tuesday night and take it from there.
All will be well! Probably won't retest now until the New Year. But we'll be ready!
How about a cheap set of adjustable coil overs. Buy or borrow.. adjust to top position.. Does IVA allow twist in spring spacers.. Do a search on eBay "coil spring spacers" twist in and others.. measure your spring dia. you may be able to use something made for another make car..
HELP ME 2 HELP YOU - please complete your Personal information: go to Menu>Profile>EditProfile>Personal>Signature> enter country code (UK,USA,etc.) your MEV, your donor's year and engine size (then click Save) This leads to faster trouble shooting!
Passed IVA yesterday. It's almost exactly two years since buying our donor car and the build has been very engaging and rewarding. The height of the rear lights was solved by adding spacers between the top of the shocks and the space frame.