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New gear for Gavin’s two-door Cosworth Cortina project, as he steps up the quality and direction with the new fuel system.

I find it intriguing what influences the build of a car. I guess the most common influences are from relatives, or cars you’ve seen. It amuses me that the build of my two-door has weirdly been influenced by the most unlikely source — the car’s the petrol tank!

When I bought the shell the previous owner had welded in a flat boot floor, deleting the original petrol tank, so I needed to come up with an alternative. This suited me as I really wanted to fit an Escort long-range style tank mounted over the rear axle. The simplest way was to use an Escort tank which is more or less the right size but it did need some small modifications to fit (the biggest modification was to the filler neck).

cosworth cortina

Neat install

The tank I’d bought looked great sat at the back of the boot, however the swirl pot which came with the tank just looked a bit naff! So the next challenge was to work out how to make the complete install look the business. I was aware of Nuke products and thought their swirl pot looked good, although maybe a bit over-specced for my car. But with my year’s bonus having just arrived I figured I’d splash out on a set from Momentum Motorsport — the Nuke dealers based in Northern Ireland.

I’m sure most of you will know how exciting it is when a box of parts arrives, but with the Nuke packaging looking so slick I was dying to rip open the boxes. Inside were some lovely pieces (too good to simply be called parts). They were not only well made, but really nicely designed. It’s this quality which has lead me to up my game with the modifications on the rest of the car. In a way the direction of my build took a change in direction as I opened those boxes. With parts of this quality in the boot, I really had to up my game with the rest of the car.

New coat

Of course, I still had to get the rest of the boot install complete to match so once the tank had been modified it was off to powdercoaters, Reality Motorworks with it, and I got it back in black. One of the Nuke styles is a two-tone black — satin and gloss, so with the tank now satin black, gloss black stripes were added in a barcode style (more of this later as it’ll be used throughout the car). This is something that isn’t that obvious in photos but makes a nicely subtle reference. I also wanted textures to be used to highlight the quality, so the metal straps which came with the tank have been dispensed with, tabs have been welded to the base to locate the tank, and fabric straps will be used to keep the tank in check.

By this stage I’d hoped I would have plumbed in much of the equipment, but I’m not familiar with this set-up and it seems that everybody has a different idea of how it should be all set up, some saying take the return feed to the swirl pot, some to the tank, and so on. So until I’m sure I have the definitive answer, the cutting of the fuel pipe will have to wait.

For now though I think the whole set-up has an element of quality to it which I want to continue through the car. I’m investigating various finishes to improve the look of some elements, and against my better judgement I’ve replaced a couple of parts which had already been upgraded in order to get a better look. It’ll make for a much better finished car, even if it does take a little longer to finish.

This update on Gavin’s Cosworth Cortina first appeared in the March 2018 issue

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