Smiths Heater Refurbishment & Trial Fitting

In a Bugeye engine bay, the Smiths heater box and blower are quite prominent so it is important that in addition to functioning well, they also look good! This Episode Forty-five video of the Bugeye Restoration shows the refurbishment process. The original plan was to use the heater box that was in the car, but in the end we decided to replace the box with a unit manufactured by Ashley Hinton in the UK. 

The matrix was flushed and checked for leaks and the blower motor was tested. The unit is now ready for installation in the car.

Bugeye Restoration Video Episode Forty-five:

Upon initial fitting of the heater box it was quickly evident that the heater box was sitting too low relative to the blower fan unit. In our case we are using a blower unit that was originally in a big Healey, the heater box as previously stated is a new reproduction made by Ashley Hinton and the previous owner installed a new battery shelf so it is difficult to say where the misalignment may have originated. Perhaps a combination of all three!

At any rate, we had some 1/8″ black ABS plastic sheet laying around the garage so we cut three pieces to size and then glued them together with ABS glue. We then used a 1 5/8″ drill hole saw and a saber saw to cut the air circulation hole in the center of the new shim plate. To this we attached 1/2″ closed-cell rubber adhesive-backed insulation and screwed the shim to the bottom of the heater box. We were then able to bring the components into alignment when mounted on the car.

ABS plastic shim

The dashboard heater switch was installed in the dash and connected to the blower fan. once connected to a 12 volt power source we were able to successfully test the switch and blower motor. 

Finally, we installed a 10-32 nut sert into the RH engine bay valance to locate the large “P” clip for the heater/fresh air trunking. 

Bugeye Restoration Video Fifty-two shows the installation of the heater components in the car: