F1 restoration: Jordan 195

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The finish line is in sight as the car gains made-to-measure dampers, while work continues on the period monochrome dash

My Jordan-Peugeot is finally nearing completion, and we are now focused on the relatively minor parts of the build and restoration. That includes the dampers and the dash. 

The car came to me minus its dampers, so we have had to commission a brand-new set frFom Quantum Racing in West Sussex. They have been designed to mimic the originals as closely as possible, but we have added some options for adjustability to allow for greater fine-tuning. We don’t have any set up-sheets from period, so knowing the exact damper rate employed in the day and at each circuit is impossible. Having a set of dampers built for every circuit is impractical, so this solution will allow us to tune the car as required. The dampers are a direct fit to the original suspension components and as such require no fettling or modification of original rockers or mounts.

Spring rates have been determined via a very complex computer simulation. We have several spring choices to test, which should give us some further set-up options for each circuit. If we were just building the car for static display or demo runs we wouldn’t have gone to these lengths, but from the outset I have determined that the 195 should be built to race.

Tour-de-Force Power Engineering have also been working on the cockpit and specifically the dash display and associated knobs and switchgear. The intention is to use the original dash which came with the car, but it is taking some time to comprehend the exact communication protocol used to relay information to a 23-year-old bit of kit. It’s a work in progress at the moment and taking longer to complete than we originally thought.

Maintaining the original look and feel is important, though. The dash rev display starts at 6 and progresses to 0, and then on from 1 to 7 again, a shorthand way of getting from 6000rpm to the near-17,000rpm rev limit. Very cool. If the dash work doesn’t get completed in time for the first few runs of the car, then we have a plan B. This involves using a MoTeC CDL display, which is the last monochrome LCD display option manufactured today and it has the look and feel that suits a ’90s Formula 1 car perfectly. 

While the dash is being figured out the original pots and switches are all being refurbished and we have had Momo supply a replica steering wheel to match the original. We only had the few onboard camera videos available on YouTube to use as a reference, but the copy we have is identical in every way as far as we can tell.

It’s final assembly and shakedown test next, and then on to Prescott Hill at the end of June and the Silverstone Classic in July. We’ll also hopefully be running the car up the hill at the Goodwood Festival of Speed.


Next month: At last – shakedown test, ready for debut at Prescott hillclimb
Thanks to: Tour-de-Force Power Engineering, Bedford; Engine Developments, Rugby

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