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  • Location
    Down South
  • Cars Owned
    1968 Mk3 Spitfire ( From August 1989 to February 2018 )

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  1. Just take the two bolts out that secure the hood to the rear deck. Put the frame down in its storage position, neatly fold the hood ensuring no creases in the windows (I use a towel where window material touches to stop sticking), Fit a hood bag that includes the two hole eye's. Using the two elasticated straps on the hood-bag loop under the folded hood and onto the hood frame underneath to keep the hood up off of the storage area behind the seats. Fit the Hard Top using side fittings (usually easier to put these in place on the body before the hood bag is in place (as the bag has eyelets for these to go through as well). Bolt the rear deck hard-top bolts through the eyes in the hood bag. Simples!
  2. @steveweblin, Yes, granted. Modern parts and probably panels are quite expensive though luckily have not had to go that route myself. But as in another thread I was partaking in. We have to balance the cost of restoration against final market value, what we would like our vehicles appearance to be, or just to keep them on the road as a rolling restoration and not trailer them to shows and polish them. Each to their own, how they invest in their cars and how they run them. Just thinking its all getting a tad expensive now.
  3. Yes, shopping around is the key. Just done a quick list of body panels likely to require replacing on an early spitfire for a first time restoration from a large parts supplier; Rear Valance; 2x rear wings, 2x sills, 2x inner sills, 2x front wings,2x floor pans, 2x door skins 2x front arch bowles. Well less any other minor panels and what you can fabricate yourself that lot came to £1800 just in panels. No wonder I was given a rough quote a few months back for re-restoring my Mk3 at in excess of £12000 !
  4. Hi all, Recently been taking an interest in the price of various parts for our cars and was actually shocked at the prices. Yes I spent most of my money ten years ago doing my car up but it was an eye-opener looking at current prices. And I do realise the effects of inflation etc etc. But Seat foam sets on the Eb@y for £258. Rear wings for early spitfires for £232 each and I know early Jaguar wings can cost £1000 each! I must be stuck in a time warp or just getting old but anyone entering some serious restoration is in for a massive bill in parts. Is it just in line with inflation? or are suppliers upping the prices in line with the current boom in classic car market prices? Another rambled rambling from me.
  5. Yes the spare wheel is definitely an aid to integrity.
  6. Something I do like about the Spitfire in regard to rear impact is the location of the fuel tank. Right above the rear axle and in a low speed incident unlikely to get damaged. When I think back years ago to my Dolomite Sprint & 1850 with the tank as part of the boot floor I shudder to think what a rear impact would do. Yes I know that the Heralds are the same to some degree. Safety is very important, but if we wrapped ourselves up in cotton wool every time we went out we wouldn't go anywhere.
  7. Hi all, This one should get some healthy debate going. We all own and run classic Triumphs from the 60s and 70s, they have a market value and to many of us the value is in the pleasure of owning and not necessarily financial. We like to think that our cars will appreciate in value, but the reality is that only certain models within a marque seem to attract the following and hence higher prices. I am beginning to come to the conclusion that we own these cars due to either having an example in our youth, or having one in the family many years ago and the nostalgia is what keeps us hungry for them. Values however obviously decline over the years post production until they hit a rock bottom. Then the values rise again as nostalgic interest takes hold, cars are restored and more people say 'I remember them' and want to buy one. But then the prices either stagnate or in exotic cases, continue to rise. So to the title of this post; Classic cars and Antiques. Antiques are the same, unless they are a Rembrandt or such, their value is only there when people of 'that generation' who remember them fondly like to collect such examples. When that generation decreases the value of such cars also decreases as younger enthusiasts don't have the interest in older machinery. A bit like most of us I suspect who find Vintage cars pleasing to watch, but we would never consider buying one. After all an antique Item up to a hundred or so years old is probably worth a decent amount, but a bowl or pot dug up thats a thousand years old never seems to have any value at all. Just my ramblings for the afternoon. Wondering how our cars will fare over the next 5-10 years or so.
  8. Thanks for that. It obviously adds some strength to the back end. Though as with all cars, the strength does not mean a lot when a low down car is hit by one with a higher ride/bumper height. Only curious as it gets annoying when the car travelling behind you has to drive so close in order to read the model designation on the back of my spitfire, then backs off. My answer, "get your Bl@@dy eyes tested!" and keep back!
  9. Hi all, I have for a while now been looking into areas in which I could improve occupant safety within my 1968 Spitfire MK3. Now, there are a couple of videos on Youtube showing official crash testing of a spitfire and the end result. What I have found interesting is a US NHTSA NCAP crash test on a 1978 Spitfire. The video is here; If you forward to 3 mins 6 seconds you see the rear impact test from the underside. It appears quite clearly that there are two extra chassis components extending from the rear of the chassis either side of the differential and extending outwards to the rear overriders. To my eye this appears to have added some good strength in the event of a rear impact. Googling for images of a 1978 US Spitfire chassis has proved difficult. Would be interested to know if this was a full production chassis or, shall we say, just employed for the test. Anyone with any opinions on this or seen an actual US chassis.
  10. Thanks for the replies. Well in the years I have run the car it has never boiled over so I will keep it as is then.
  11. oops !!!! Sounds a right bargain That should read 5 litres I believe. Sorry
  12. Hi again, Whilst I have been doing my coolant change I have noticed something that some enlightened person may be able to offer a perl of wisdom on. I have a 1968 Mk3 Spitfire in standard tune. The difference being that since I bought the car (1989) it has always been fitted with a Mk1 full width (22" ") radiator and expansion tank over the carbs. Now looking in the Haynes manual it states that the MK1 with wide radiator requires a 7lb radiator cap. The Mk3 as original would have had a narrower radiator with a 13lb cap. Here's the difference. I appear to have a 13lb cap on my expansion tank, if the 13 stamped on the top is what it means. Now as I have the MK1 Radiator should I change this to a 7lb cap ? Does cap blow off pressure dictate how hot/cold the engine runs? as I read somewhere that the radiators were changed to narrower ones due to overcooling. Any thoughts?
  13. Hi all, Well, system flushed out today. Old water did not look that bad, pinkish but that was the colour of the old antifreeze anyway. Then I got the hose to several parts of the system, including flushing the heater matrix through. Then we had all the red rusty water flowing everywhere. Flushed completely until the water was running clear all round. Re-filled with my new antifreeze from Motor Parts Direct on our local industrial estate. They supplied me, as stated yesterday with a 20 litre can of Autochem Blue Antifreeze for £15.22 inc vat So thats that done and dusted hopefully, no leaks so far.
  14. Well, what a productive evening. Out in the garage, rocker gear off. Wiped off all of the oil on the top of the head and spun the engine over with no plugs in. Oil came bubbling up out of the hole so I know its not something lower down. Stripped the rocker assembly down and cleaned everything. A fair bit of carbonised oil in some of the rockers machined pivot hole as it looks like there is wear in the hole and on the shaft. A couple of the valve stem heads look slightly damaged i.e. eroded due to lack of lubrication. The rockers themselves have wear on their contact patches. Pity really as that was a recon unleaded head many years ago and if any worse will now need taking off and new valves fitted. The rocker assembly is original and not part of the recon head kit. Anyway, all is now back together. Ran the engine without the rocker cover and oil appears to be evident out of all the holes on the rockers, well there are spits of it at ticker and up to about 2000 rpm. I guess at normal operating rpm with the pressure up there would be more oil evident. On to the next servicing task tomorrow.
  15. Hi Pete, I do have oil getting up there, its very little just a drop eventually oozing out of most of the holes though I would have thought it would be more to be enough to run down onto the space between rocker and valve top. As one appears to have no oil exiting the hole I think I should maybe strip down the rocker assembly and check for any blockage, especially on that rocker.
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