Winter Strip Down: National Points Champion Craig Finnikin 55’s Shale Car

After winning the final and taking the 6th place needed in the Grand National to be crowned National Points Champion for 2011, it was time to strip the car down back to bare chassis and give it a fresh new look for 2012 proud to be wearing the coveted silver roof.

The bumpers and nerf rails were replaced, new side panels, cab panels and bonnet were fabricated and a few alterations were made to accommodate a new radiator and other replacement parts.

The car was then sent to the shot blasters, and from there straight to the painters. Once it was back in the garage we set too on the rebuilding process.

First we got it rolling by installing the axles, tie bars and suspension. The MSD and the brake cylinders were also fitted as well as the front brake pipes.

Craig Finnikin's 55 shale car back in the garage. Photo Kris Ferguson

Then the engine was fitted and once we got the engine in, the exhaust headers, fuel pump and fuel tank were fitted as well as the oil filter, fan, cowling and radiator (after some more fiddling) and the carburettor.

The engine is fitted. Photo Kris Ferguson

We then moved on to the cab.

Craig Finnikin's 55 shale car cab. Photo Kris Ferguson

The braided hose brake lines, clutch pipe and reservoirs were installed as well as the pedal assembly, steering box, wiring and gauges and gear linkage. Then came the flywheel, clutch, bell housing and gearbox. The seat and belts were also fitted.

Craig Finnikin's 55 shale car. Photo Kris Ferguson

The last few jobs were finished which included installing the diff, prop shaft and half shaft’s as well as the brake pads and tidying up all the loose ends.

We then awaited the arrival of the sign writer, and I’m sure you will agree it was worth it.

Craig Finnikin's 55 signwritten shale car. Photo Kris Ferguson

Craig Finnikin's 55 signwritten shale car. Photo Kris Ferguson

Craig Finnikin's 55 signwritten shale car. Photo Kris Ferguson

Craig Finnikin's 55 signwritten shale car. Photo Kris Ferguson

The all important silver wing

Craig Finnikin's 55 all important silver wing. Photo Kris Ferguson

the signwritten wing. Photo Kris Ferguson

the underside of the signwritten wing. Photo Kris Ferguson

The car is almost ready now, a quick trip back to the paint shop to get lacquered then it just needs scaling and setting up with any final adjustments required for Belle Vue ready to start from where we left off. See you all there, from Team 55.

F1Stockcars.com wishes Craig every success in 2012 with the silver roof and our thanks go to team 55 member Kris Ferguson for supplying the information.

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