Winter Project 2013/14 - The Rear Subframe Recon

Like many people who own a classic car, I keep the Mini off the road over winter to protect it from the inevitable salty slush that would just get chucked up into every nook and cranny of the car. So while the car's laid up, it's a great time to crack on with the larger projects.

Over the winter of 2013-2014, I focused on getting the rear subframe off the car and fully refurbished, along with anything else that was associated with the job.

Having a few hours here and there in the evenings and working in the cramped conditions my shed affords, I started the work towards the end of October 2013 and didn't get finished until mid January 2014! Now while that may seem like quite a long time for such a job, it's worth noting that absolutely every other associated part that came off the car was also meticulously refurbished as I hate putting dirty parts back on.

So this is how the work broke down...

Rear Subframe Removal - Part 1
Friday, October 25, 2013
 Rear Subframe Removal - Part 1

As work began I started by removing the petrol tank and began work on removing the exhaust. I thought I might get away with leaving it attached, but decided to remove it the next day.

Rear Subframe Removal - Part 2
Sunday, October 27, 2013

With the exhaust off, there were many other smaller jobs that needed to be done before the subframe could be freed from the car.

Rear Subframe Strip Down - Part 1
Monday, October 28, 2013

With the subframe off the car and in the shed the real work started by stripping absolutely everything from subframe leaving it bare.

Rear Subframe Strip Down - Part 2 - Wire Brush Time
Tuesday, October 29, 2013

This was by far where the bulk of the work was for me. Night after night with a wire brush and a drill removing the grease, grime and old paint. It seemed like it took for ever, but it was worth it in the end.

Rear Subframe Strip Down - Part 3 (Ish) - Foam Filler!
Thursday, December 12, 2013

Yes! I actually filled the cavities in the subframe with expanding foam filler in the hope that it would stop water, dirt and debris getting into those deep dark places that cannot be cleaned.

Rear Subframe Recon Complete!!
Saturday, January 11, 2014

With the bare subframe cleaned and filled, it was finally time to apply the paint and finish the job.

Rear Subframe Rebuild
Sunday, January 12, 2014

Now that all the parts are cleaned, restored, and looking awesome, the rear subframe can be put back together again.

Rear Subframe Installation
Tuesday, January 14, 2014

After all the hard work, the day finally arrives when the subframe and the car can be reunited once more. Not before giving the underside of the car a good thick coat of underseal first though

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