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** 19/10/21 Spray it again ** Probably how not to restore a Herald!

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First a confession, I haven't wielded a spanner in anger in about 15 years, ever since cars got so complicated that I had no option but to pay someone else to service and repair them.

Therefore buying a 1968 Herald 1200 represented a leap of faith for both me and my long suffering wife, however we both love classics, having owned a Beetle (proper rear engined and air cooled), a 1966 Herald 1200, and a Mini, again a proper Mini not the BMW pastiche.

So here is my car, purchased in July from a dealer in Aylesbury.

Rust in all the usual places on the body shell, ie around the front wheel arches, lower doors and lower rear wings, however the underside is solid and doesn't need welding from what I can see so far.

Under the bonnet there is some rot in the bulkhead around the heater plenum chamber.

That's the worst of it.

The other side is much better.

The rest of the under bonnet area is as tatty as you would expect from an unrestored 48 year old car.

Not sure if the gold cam cover denotes a replacement engine. Need to uncover the engine number under all that grime.

I'm currently striping the horrible black paint off that a previous owner saw fit to daub on the bulkhead.

Not sure about the battery set up. The car has been converted to + earth and an alternator fitted, however, the battery terminals are very close to the battery retaining clamp and I've managed to short it out a few times when tightening up the battery connection.

I think I will have turn the battery around and fit longer + & - leads to keep everything safe and isolated.

And finally a pic of the interior.

Carpets have been removed as they were faded and stinky, which has revealed a remarkable sound floor area.

The dash is a bit of a state and requires sanding and refinishing.

Some of the switches don't work, or are loose, so I can see me sorting that out over the winter.

I've already fitted new HT leads, distributor cap and rotor arm, all of which have improved performance noticeably.

I'll post more updates as I undertake more jobs on the car.


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Re battery, surely it must be negative earth?.

I meant negative earth. D'oh!


I've already turned the battery clamp around so the thinnest portion faces the terminals.


Then again not convinced that the battery clamp is original as it two different sized nuts, and one of the 'arms' has been welded back together.



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And to refurb the rocker cover club shop, sell the original triumph gold for this


Do get to know the car before you get carried away with taking it apart.

Battery clamps get molested over the years , but terminals at the rear makes for

less sparks, or shorts when left overnight,

I would add a earth bond from the body earth eyelet to link the engine block




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You'll be surprised how much better the engine bay will look once you've painted the bulk head. I de-rusted mine and sprayed with rattle cans from the club shop. Doesn't have to be as pristine as the outer body work paint, just the right colour! The horizontal bits are easy to spray, no runs!  I did it in sections, refurbishing other bits as I went. Wiper motor, master cylinder rubbers, battery compartment - got a rubber mat, from the club shop to go under the battery. If you've got an of old rubber mat , cut apiece off to go under the battery clamp to protect the battery terminals, until it's new battery time, then get an 063 with terminals at the back.

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I'm under orders from SWMBO that I'm not to take this one apart and leave it in bits like my last Herald 20 years ago, so all work will be on a 'running' basis.


This will at least allow me to drive the car, and get to know it.


The bulkhead needs a spruce up and a bit of welding, after which it should look much more presentable, much better than the current matt black gunk that has been liberally applied.


I've not heard of the additional earth lead, where about does it attach on the body shell?



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I've not heard of the additional earth lead, where about does it attach on the body shell?


The earth straps on the Herald are normally a short lead from Battery to Body and another at the front from Engine to Chassis. I just added another from where the existing one mounts on the body, round the back of the battery and connects to one of the Bellhousing to engine bolts, this ensures the engine is well earthed. I think the 1500 Spitfires had this as standard.


I done this as my starter seemed a bit sluggish on occasions, since doing this it's been fine.

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  • 2 weeks later...

The work on sprucing up the bulkhead has continued over the weekend, tackling the driver's side of the bay, hence the question on removing the accelerator cable.

The area around the clutch and brake cylinders was looking particularly rough under the coat of black gunk applied by a previous owner, so I decided to disconnect both from the pedal assemblies, butg not the actual pipework.

Two and a half hours later and this is what I was left with, excuse the poor pics, I had to take them in the garage.



The area around the master cylinders was as pitted as expected, but actually came up quite well.


Next up will be applying a rust stopper, before a couple of coats of primer.

The master cylinder brackets are marinading in Gunk, as they were particularly mucky, however both cylinders appear to be in excellent condition, with no leaks.

The aim is to have it all primed and back together ahead of the next Bicester Scramble on October 2nd.


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Note the cyl brkts are generally different the brake one has the short reinforced plate across the cyl face

As this takes more load than the clutch , or the higher pedal loads start to crack the bracket


club shop do stainless ones , as do others


Good time to examine clevis pin and hole wear on the pedals and lube the pedal spindles, these tend to sieze .

at the risk of you getting a rollocking for removing more with brackets off there not much left to remove the pedal box and clean the pins and grease it

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I hadn't noticed the difference between the brackets, so thanks for pointing that out.


I've just been out into the garage to take a look, and can see the additional gusset on the brake bracket.


Everything looks good pedal wise, with no obvious wear, so should just need new split pins and a dab of grease on re-assembly.


New engine mounts turned up today, along with a new set of trunnion seals, so enough to be keeping me busy for the next month of weekends.



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I applied Hammerite Kurust to the drivers side of the front bulkhead this afternoon which has turned it all a nice purply blue, but didn't get a chance to take any pics.

I did however manage to get both new engine mounts on, which turned out to be much easier than I anticipated, apart from losing one of the nuts from the last bolt! I'm sure it'll turn up.

This the driver's side.


And the old and the new side by side.


The old one doesn't look too bad, but it is very 'squidgy', that's a technical term, when compared with the new one.

Here I am half way through replacing the passenger side, and presumably around the point I misplaced the nut.


Tomorrow I'll put a coat of primer over the driver's side of the bulkhead.


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I think mine's more flailing engine than driveline judder judging from the jumps missing from the gearbox tunnel cover!


I was quite surprised at just how soft the old mounts were compared with the new ones. I can easily compress the rubber in them, something I just can't do with the new ones.


Looking forward to seeing what improvement this makes to the driving.



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the original Triumph spec would quote a 'Shore' hardness which is the amount of deformation of a known area under a fixed load


one thing for sure some of the old ones are better than some new ones , some replica's are just replica's with unkown rubber sort of bonded in place .  there's been a lot of reported crap mounts failing very soon after fitting


unfortunate but you get what you pay for , the strive for lower costs means less adherence to the specification

and environmental friendly processes help mess the basic spec.

  like impervious to oil and water ,its all on the drawings but ........not what you get


    hope the new ones make the drive a bit more 'taut'     but do keep an eye on them



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Hopefully these are half decent as I purchased them from Rimmer Bro's, but we shall see.

With the rain holding off this afternoon I tackled the masking up of the bulkhead area, ahead of receiving a coat of Halfords finest red primer.

Everything got a wipe down with a rag soaked in cellose thinners first to remove any lingering oily traces.

Here you can see the effect of the Kurust that I applied yesterday.



It looks rusty in the top pic, but that just a trick of the sunlight as it's actually dark blue and purple!

Which reminds me, when I was stripping down the bulkhead there appeared to be some metallic pink paint under the black gunk!!!

Anyway, this is what it looks like after a coat of primer from the rattlecan.



I haven't used one of these for years, but was actually quite impressed at how well it went on, with very little in the way of runs or splatters.

While that lot was setting up ahead of a second coat, I attacked the clutch and brake master cylinder brackets with the power drill and wire brushes.

Cleaned up clutch bracket on the right, untouched brake bracket on the left.




These have both now been cleaned up and received a coat of Kurust, ahead of some primer tomorrow night.

While I've be doing all this I've noticed a slight weep from the brake master cylinder, so looks like I'll be ordering a rebuild kit this week.

The aim is to have everything back together for next Sunday's Bicester Scramble event.

Fingers crossed.


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Will you be upgrading to silicon brake fluid? I did my bulkhead last year and didn't upgrade, wished I had, already I have a couple of corrosion spots. It doesn't matter how careful you are, Dot 4 will always get you! You're supposed to replace it every two years due to water absorption, so next year Dot 5 for me!

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No, you don't have to strip it down, just pour the silicon in (Dot 4 and silicon don't mix, silicon is blue so you'll know when you've got all the Dot 4 out) 


However, one thing about Dot 4 is it lubricates and protects the seals, silicon does not. So if you put silicon in and the brakes aren't as good as they were it's because Dot 4 is no longer masking the inadequacies of the seals and you'll have to change them. In this case you're changing the master cylinder seals anyway which only leaves the brake cylinders which may not need changing.


Silicon is expensive but as you're supposed to change Dot 4 every two years, wait six years and you're better off!


 Here is a piece by Buckeye Triumphs that will tell you all you need to know.



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The repair kit for the leaking brake master cylinder turned up yesterday, so I decided to remove the offending object.

More easily said than done.

The nut connecting the brake line to the top of the cylinder was rounded off, so I ended up having to search through my limited selection of spanners to try and find one that would fit.

I eventually found an ancient spanner at the bottom of an old tool box. God only knows where it came from, but it fitted and allowed me to unscrew the brake line.

Now I've never rebuilt a master brake cylinder before, but with the help of my official Triumph dealer workshop manual, so old that it doesn't mention either the GT6 or 13/60, it was much easier than I expected.

Et voilà! One cylinder reduced to its constituent assemblies.


As you can see, I forsook the darkness of the garage for the comfort of the study. Much more conducive to cleaning up components.

This is the piston assembly with new seals fitted.


Both piston and bore were free of scoring or corrosion, so no issues there.


And here it is all back together.


I've now bolted the cylinder back onto the mounting bracket, and should be able to get the whole ensemble back on the bulkhead tomorrow night.


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  • Bordfunker changed the title to ** 19/10/21 Spray it again ** Probably how not to restore a Herald!

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