I haven’t been finding the stock Caterham provided wing mirrors the best. There’s a fair amount of rattling and quite a bit of vibration at speed which doesn’t help with visibility. I don’t think this wasn’t helped by the fact I had to drill out a fair bit of the stock wing mirror stanchion to get it to fit onto the original build!
There are several options for upgrades, I went with the Pitking Universal Alloy Race Mirrors from Demon Tweeks in black for around 48 GBP.
It’s been quite a while since I’ve done any work like this on the car, but it all comes back! As always I am a total amateur, this is just the way I fitted them …
First thing I did was clean the various marks off the mirrors with some Isopropyl alcohol.
As you can see from the photo below, the Pitking wing mirrors are slightly less than half the size of the stock Caterham mirrors.
You also notice that ‘Objects may be closer than they appear’ with the Pitking mirrors, but this also affords the luxury of giving a wider peripheral view. So comparing the two in the photo above, you can see the new mirrors allow you more lateral rear side vision, even though they are smaller. The mirror unit itself is also much more sturdy/robust.
There are two screws on the back which hold the wing mirror orientation in place once fitted:
Several mounting fitting options are provided. Naturally there are no instructions, and everything has been covered in powder coat so won’t fit together – oh I’ve missed you!
Your options appear to be either to bolt the wing mirror to the body (presumably using the 6 components on the left hand side), or to remove a screw from the windscreen (just below the screw that was removed for the original wing mirrors) and use the 4 components shown on the right hand side of the image. I opted to use the two bolts and two spacer nuts on the right hand side of the image, and set the six remaining components to one side as they wouldn’t be needed.
The bolts should fit inside the spacer nuts provided but you’ll probably find the powder coating prevents them fitting in as shown below:
As a result I decided to get the dremel out to remove the powder coat:
Once enough powder coat was removed the bolt fitted in easily and I repeated for the other side
Next up was to try the bolt in the wing mirror stanchion, however again due to powder coating it wouldn’t fit, so I got out the M8 tap and cleaned both wing mirrors out:
Once cleaned out the bolt fits nicely, photo doesn’t really do justice but goes all way in.
Now time to fit to the car – remove the existing mirror and then the lower screw from below the existing stanchion:
I opted to leave the existing bolt in place for now (will replace later with the screw) just in case I needed to put the old mirrors back in a hurry.
Then take the lower diameter end of the bolt, apply threadloc and screw into place, with a couple of light turns on a spanner. Don’t apply too much torque as it isn’t the strongest:
Now add the spacer nut, noting orientation:
As you can see from the picture there won’t be much clearance between the nut and the fixture for the door, usual 1mm out, but I did find I was able to turn it . Once this was on, I added some more threadloc to the protuding thread and then screwed on the wing mirror:
Finally, I then put a spanner on the spacer nut, and for the driver’s side, turned the spanner anti-clockwise on the spacer nut while pushing the wing mirror clockwise:
This tightened it up nicely. I then left the result for 24 hours to let the threadloc set.
Final stage, once they are fitted to the car, is to loosen just one of the screws on the back of each wing mirror itself (there are two screws on the back of each wingmirror) before sitting in the car and adjusting the wing mirrors so you can see nicely. I like to have some of the rear arches in view to help give perspective. Once you have them aligned, carefully hold them and do the screws on the back of the wing mirror up tight.
Took the end result out for a drive, slowly at first but gradually quicker and happy to report no movement of the stanchion. End result, much, much more stable wing mirrors, more situational awareness of what’s going on around you on the road. Great purchase.