Jump to content

Suffolk newbie ..and past classics

Recommended Posts

Just a brief hello. I'm Bfg and live in Suffolk, near Ipswich.  I was brought up with what we now call classic cars and have enjoyed owning a few Triumphs.   I presently have a 70's Citroen which I imported from Europe and mechanically restored, but really I'm just too tall for it.  So, after months of scratching my bald patch ..considering what I really want next (and might also sensibly live with) - I've come back to wanting another Triumph.  Until the Citroen is sold and a couple of old motorcycles too,  I'm in no position to buy anything - but I reckon without money burning a hole in my pocket - that's a good time to look around and to talk to owners,  perhaps get a test ride or two to see if a TR is still a realistic proposal for my stature and early sixties age.

Anyway that's enough from me right now as I understand there's a local club meet at Sorrel Horse, Norwich Road, Barnham  in 40 minutes, so I'd better get my skates on. 


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks chaps.

I got to the Eastern, Suffolk Section meet last evening and met some of the most amicable guys you'll ever likely to come across. Even without presently owning a Triumph I was made very welcome indeed.  That may not be a big surprise to you all,  but I've attended three other classic car clubs in this area, only one of which I attended more than half a dozen times. Likewise motorcycle clubs (as I'm also into two-wheeled classics), where I attend one only for the duration of taking my advanced motorcyclist test, and the other two just a couple of times.    Note., I never had any issue with them, nor was I asked to leave, but I just didn't seem to fit in.  Those I spoke to, of this club section, were kindly attentive to the sometimes-perhaps-over-zealous enthusiasm of this newbie quizzing them about their collections of cars, and blabbering on about my pipe-dream / hopefully next TR project..   

I was particularly struck by there being a GT4,  a wonderfully eccentric Spitfire, a truly excellent Herald Estate - which sounded purrrfect and was delightfully scruffy 'as used and enjoyed', and a beautiful Triumph 2000 in attendance on this frosty evening. There may have been more Triumphs there at some point, but as one of the last out of the hostelry, those are the ones I got a glimpse of.   Best of all was the diversity of Triumphs being enjoyed (not at all a dry conversation) ..from the most excellent Heralds to the more powerful and sporting, and that non-standard was discussed but not in the slightest frowned upon.  Lots of friendly expertise to tap into here, not to mention some good advice and insights into driving in Europe soon. :huh:

As a former design engineer I cannot help myself but to change things a little.  Not (I hope) detracting from the nature of the original car or classic motorcycle, but often numerous minor details to improve livability, reliability &/or longevity  ..and sometimes just because I prefer the look.   Case in hand was when I owned, just a few years back, a '66 S-type Jaguar.  I rewired the engine bay, moved electrical components away from the radiant heat of the manifolds, added an expansion tank for the radiator, and changed to a modern X300 air filter which I situated under the RH front wing.   Gone was what looked like a hammerite-painted pressed-steel exhaust-silencer sitting over / hiding the line of those glorious alloy rocker covers (and which sucked extremely hot air from over the manifolds), and gone was repetitive topping up of engine coolant.        


The air filter you see above is a plenum chamber (closed to the engine bay) simply used to divide the air being drawn through the duct (through the RH inner wing) from the x300 air filter - which takes its cool fresh air from under the front of the car.  The radiator expansion tank was situated under the left wing (there was no expansion tank originally on these cars), so all one obviously sees of that was the overflow pipe.  The steering fluid reservoir was moved forward, so as to be away from the radiant heat of the exhaust, as was the voltage regulator (now on the front face of the heater matrix box). The screen wash bottle, clutch fluid reservoir, and wiper motor were each distributed accordingly.  

It may not be original but this layout was very much more practical to live with (much easier access to reservoirs, spark plugs, distributor, etc) , was more efficient (cool air induction) and with improved engine-bay cooling (..without having the exhaust silencer-type air filter filling it - there's better air flow through and a larger clear volume ), it helped keep extremes of heat away from the electrics and their connections, and in my opinion is much neater (uncluttered) ..to better show one of the most beautiful engines ever made.  The original air filter etc were all kept so that it might be changed back to original if a future owner preferred.

The thing is that the S-type Jag was one of the least fashionable models (compared with the Mk2 jag for example) and many were being scrapped when I bought this one.  As such there was little financial-investment pressure to keep the car standard.  Fortunately at this moment in time some model of Triumph are still just about there, ie., the plentiful and less desirable models, and those uneconomic to restore back to original - so I'm hoping to be able to personalise a car ..to my personal want, needs, and tastes.  Meeting the guys at the club venue last night confirmed that I wouldn't be alienated and/or burnt as a witch if I did so.!   And I cannot rightfully express how much that motivates me :)

I really hope to have found a club where I might fit in and simply enjoy these cars, in my own way. 

Thank you.

  • Like 2
  • Thanks 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi Bfg, welcome to the forum and hopefully Triumph ownership :)  I know what you mean about not fitting in, (you should try owning a Wolseley) Since owning a Triumph the amount of people i have met that are just guy's enjoying their hobby is fantastic :)  When you had the "S" Type you should have done a post office or a bank as that is what they were mainly used for. Personally they are my favourite over the MK 2. :)  (To own that is)


  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 hours ago, clive said:

Hmm, a excellent (but scruffy) Herald estate. Sounds like it could be Colin? If so he is a gem...

It was my car, but I have sold it, and the new owner has been forced to put it into daily service following a wheel bearing failure on his daily drIver Mk3 Spitfire.

The 2000 was my steed for the night. Finally fixed the misfire that plagued us in the RBRR it seems so was out enjoying it.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...


I really like that Herald estate..  its a fantastic looking car in a great 'do not paint' condition.

As an aside.. This evening i applied to join the TSSC  :ph34r:  .. but I've also dropped them an email asking them to send me an application for direct debit.. 'cause I don't have a printer..  :rolleyes:

Argh come on guys..  I've lived most of my life in the last century.. and I'll die having lived most of my life in the last century  ..so why should I have a computer printer which still works ?  :P

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The deed is done.  Received the d.d. mandate, then phoned the office and Martin was glad to relieve me of my money, d.d. also now completed and waiting upon the postie.  I'm now an officially a paid-up newbie. :rolleyes:   And all I need now is the money to buy a car,  so ..Sunbeam motorcycle advertised today.  :huh:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Indeed the club is very welcoming and I haven’t met any pretentious members yet. I’m working class and most Triumphs are working class cars, so I fit in just fine. Standard or modded it’s up to you, knowbody seems to mind. I like that attitude. 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks again all,  

I've now put 'Hovis' one of my vintage (1955) Sunbeam motorcycles up for sale  < here >   as I need the money to fund living ( ! ) ..and to contribute towards my buying a Triumph automobile.    I have another older (1948) Sunbeam and a (1973) Norton Commando, I'm likewise preparing to go to new homes, and then also my current classic motor car, a (1974) Citroen-Cimos Ami-Super.   That's a lot of clearing to make room for one Triumph project  !


Out of passing interest Hovis is a smart bike from just a few paces,  but far from concourse.   Today I had an enquiry regarding the condition of its chrome and paint.,  and after giving a detailed written reply I concluded with the following

On a reflective (no pun intended) note ; you might like to consider,
with the chrome-work re-plated & the paintwork repainted - then you'll
have what looks like a new bike. Are you looking for a motorcycle
which looks new ? ..or would you prefer one with its rough edges of
patina and over half a century of history ?  The choice is entirely

I repeat this here only because I've seen so many beautifully restored cars,  motorcycles, and sailing boats,  and perhaps because I've attempted this work many times myself - I am filled with utmost respect for their achieving such fine quality ..but then at the same time feel a little loss.   The wonderful  Triumph Herald Estate, mentioned above, which particularly caught my eye - because it oozed a long history of being used and enjoyed  . .and the new owner's intent is I believe to restore the car.    

I moved towards show-quality with a couple of motorcycle restorations and with the '66 Jaguar.  And without exception the bike or car increased in attractiveness, elegance and value,  but also lost the crucial element found in much-enjoyed (clearly well used) classics - fun.    



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Create New...