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Caterham Roadsport SV build help!


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Hello Everyone,


My name is Cole, and I am new to this site along with the partially built 2005 Caterham Roadsport SV that is in my garage. I recently inherited this vehicle from a person who was like a father to me but sadly he never had the time to finish the build. I have never built a car before and do not want to get this wrong on his behalf. As far as I can tell, he left off trying to install the interior as only half of the rivets were completed on the side panels. So I have a few questions for you folks after my initial walk through.


1.This is the rivet pack that was found inside the car with the rivet gun and a few missing rivets in the side panels. I do not see in the instructions about interior installs, so do any of you know what rivets I should be using? There are only four of item #7 left in the bag.



2. Here is an example of the incomplete rivets.



3. The assembly guide states:


26 The bracket for locating the washer bottle

is pre-fitted to the lower RH side of the engine

bay in front of the pedal box."

I do not see any pre-fitted bracket, as it was found loose when I picked up the car. I do not see any holes in the engine bay with this type of hole orientation pre-drilled. Should this washer bottle be installed on the passenger side pedal box? If its on the driver side, I do not think the harness will reach the pump as the pump will end up against the far wall if done so.

The washer jet and line have already been installed.



4. The exhaust is extremely close to the driver side rear tire. Any suggestions to fixing this issue? Tires are 195/45 R15




More to come...

chassis packet.jpg

Rear tire spacing.jpg

rivent placement.jpg

wash bottle.jpg

Edited by littleb00m
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My location is Houston Texas. For some reason I couldn't get the full post completed this morning, so I was waiting for the post to be approved. I will fully update when I get home this evening! Thanks again


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5. Front wing stay is extremely close to the tire as well. Tire size 195/45 R15.


6. When the hood is installed, it touches the top of the engine. I can imagine this will cause wearing issues quick down the road. I did also find in the garage, a large roll of thermal padding. Maybe he intended to install this into the inside of the hood to help with this?


7.There is a tube sticking out of the .... rear dif? Not sure if that is right. Can anyone advise to this tube, and if anything needs to happen here before reinstalling the boot cover so that I can begin installing carpet.

Speaking of carpet, any recommendations to what adhesive to use?

Front tire spacing.jpg

engine touching hood.jpg

boot hose.jpg

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8. The ball joint on both sides front steering are touching the break pads. There are many theories to why this happend, but can I get some direction as to correct, or should I wait until after the build and get the tires on for alignment?



9. I tried installing the windshield yesterday just so I can say I had accomplished something. However, the rubber does not want to lay flat against the car. Any suggestions here? Will the rubber form to the hood over time?


Thank you for all of the suggestions and future help. I am located in Houston, TX so if there is any local help I would much appreciate anything.

I have not quite searched the forum yet to this regard, but would also like to know the registration process in Texas for this type of vehicle.

windshield rubber seal.jpg

ball joint spacing2.jpg

ball joint spacing.jpg

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Hi Cole,


Just buy some more pop rivets of both sizes, the black ones are a little harder to find but they are cheap. I think the factory should have installed those, my 2004 SV came with them installed but it was assembled to a rolling chassis by the dealer before I bought it, so I don't know if he had to install them.


My washer tank was mounted on the passenger side firewall. I removed it and put an overflow tank in its place.


Does the exhaust have a slip joint somewhere upstream? You may have to cut out a piece and re-weld.


On the brake rotor clearance I *think* there may be a spacer missing between the inner wheel bearing and the spindle which would move the rotor out enough to clear or you might be able to remove the arm the tie rod connects to and use a thicker washer to move that arm away from the rotor.


The seal on the windshield is now about 12 years old. You could try some rubber conditioner on it or order a new seal.


The fender stay to tire clearance is larger than on my car with 205/50 tires. They can be bent before you mount the fender to them just make sure the mounting surfaces on both stays are in the same plane.


Good luck with the build.

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I am in The Woodlands and would be happy to stop by some time and take a look, I have built and rebuilt a number of Caterhams including an SV. None of these issues are too difficult to deal with, where in the Houston area are you?


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6. When the hood is installed, it touches the top of the engine. I can imagine this will cause wearing issues quick down the road. I did also find in the garage, a large roll of thermal padding. Maybe he intended to install this into the inside of the hood to help with this?


I have the Ford Zetec SVT motor in my 2007 Caterham SV, and ever since delivery in 2007, the underside of the aluminum bonnet has rubbed (lightly, I think!) on the engine. In my case, it rubbed on the very expensive and hard to find variable intake cam timing solenoid. In the Ford Focus, the spark plug valley cover has a "bulge" for this solenoid, and Caterham USA or RMSCI decided to leave this cover off, possibly to lower the profile of the motor. I have modified and reinstalled the cover, because it prominently displays "Powered by SVT" and although I removed the top of the bulge, it does continue to rub. Bottom line, after nearly 10 years, the "damage" is insignificant in my case.


Of course, the idea of a thermal padding, if it would resist wear, sounds like a good idea to me.

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Does the solenoid rub with the nose installed? There is a bit of weather strip that the hood rests on where it meets the nose so you could try to put on a second strip or a thicker version.

Another possibility is to make a bumper of RTV on top of the solenoid. I put a rubber cork on the plastic timing belt cover that pushed up the nose enough to stop the rubbing. I would avoid using the insulation on the hood, it probably will rub through quickly and you don't need it trapping anymore heat under the hood. The intention might have been to insulate the pedal box and passenger foot well area or the transmission tunnel if it came without the factory insulation kit.


These sites may help in the future http://www.thecaterhamproject.com/index.html


Edited by breezy7
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Ah thank you for the insight. I hadn't thought about the nose cone helping with that area. I only noticed the rubbing because of transporting the caterham to my house and just noted it a something to keep an eye on. I will keep this in mind though, and hopefully the nose cone helps in that regard. I do not think there is an insulation kit that came with it, so you are probably correct here as well.


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just checked our car -2006 cat with svt. I added a extra strip of foam weather strip to nose to raise hood slightly above solenoid about 1/16 " clearance. I think it's better to raise hood than put any pressure on top of " very expensive , hard to get " solenoid.

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