When the bough breaks, the cradle will fall

After spending this morning working on various things, I decided this afternoon to spend some time in the garage. After my friend Billy managed to get my old cassette/radio out of the car on Saturday, that just left me the task of removing the cradle that it had been sat in. You can see from previous photos how the original stereo sat in some housing underneath the dash rail. That plastic cradle was held in place by two bolts, so it should have been a simple job to undo them and remove the housing. Hah. When was working on this car ever straightforward? I think Neddy has a cruel sense of humour – any job that is *supposed* to take half an hour normally ends up taking at least three!

After a lot of fumbling around in spaces I couldn’t see, I eventually figured out that nuts I could feel on the underside of the top of the cradle were not actually bolts, but in fact square nuts welded to the metal of the cradle. Which meant that it was more like a screw, which would have been screwed in from the top rather than the bottom. So that meant getting underneath the lining of the glove compartment, which is no easy job when there’s a dashboard restricting access! A lot more fumbling around and I discovered that in fact it wasn’t a screw head at all, but a bolt. So out came my trusty socket set and a rachet, and after a lot of struggling against the stubborn cardboard lining I managed to undo the bolts! So it’s done at last, and looks much tidier. Hopefully my cello will fit more comfortably in the front seat now – it’s had to go in upside-down so far, which is hardly a natural position for a cello, and also makes it prone to falling on top of me when I go round a corner…. so hopefully that’s that sorted.

I did have a go at gluing the carpet back onto the passenger side footwell. Epoxy resin would have been the ideal choice, but I didn’t have any, so I tried superglue, since I had some of that already. Surprise surprise, it didn’t hold. Looks like I’ll have to invest in some epoxy after all! There’s a strange sense of achievement doing things to my Mini – it’s satisfying being able to do what I want with it. Sometimes I wonder if I’m spending too much time thinking about it though… I’ve found myself glued to eBay and various Mini parts web sites, deciding which bits to buy next! At least I have the reassurance that once I’ve bought these things I won’t have to buy them again. I know what I want Neddy to end up looking like, and once it’s there I shouldn’t have to worry too much. That’s the theory at least…

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