Major project for Winter '09 / Spring'10 was this US spec TR4. "Great" I thought, "no rust!" How wrong I was. 20 years in the UK meant this one was as bad as usual with some horrible bodges thrown in.
New floors, sills, battery shelf, front and rear valances, wing mounting flanges etc etc, and most of the panels were like tea bags. Some of the new panels needed cutting in to several pieces before they would fit satisfactorily
Chassis looks awful, but it's just muck, dust and rust. Take it apart, sandblast, powder coat, paint, reassemble with all new bolts, bearings, bushes, brakes, springs and seals etc. It's not difficult work but it's rewarding quick progress.
Repairs underway. The car was to remain LHD which at least meant all the original parts could be re used although there was plenty missing, ho-hum.
There was a tight deadline on this project, I think my quickest completion yet, and probably since.
Usual battery tray repairs finished.
Most of the repairs were done on the chassis which was in good condition. It's the best jig for the body so you can build it with good gaps etc.
Light accident damage to the front and rear was straightened with the valances removed.
It's usual to find the wing mounting flanges have disappeared and you have to be careful to keep the shape flowing nicely through three separate panels.
Once finished the tub went for blasting and etch priming.
So after weeks of welding (keeps you warm in a sub zero winter workshop!) the finished tub is now fitted to the finished chassis. Somehow I missed photographing the chassis but you know, it's black and shiny with lots of new bits on it.
Now the tub gets all the panels test fitted and repaired. All the original wings were re used - new ones are expensive and couldn't be guaranteed to fit well without time spent modifying them. Rear valance as usual was trouble and ended up in 5 pieces before it was somewhere near.
It's that picture again. At last, the body is finished, removed, stone guarded and seam sealed and seen here returning from the paintshop in Triumph Signal Red. And the sun is shining!
Home straight now.
Assembly progressing well but two items at the rear caused some tension. Spare wheel covers were not available and the chrome plater wanted 3 months to do the rear bumper. Fortunately the plater had a cancellation and I made the wheel cover so all was well.
It's gorgeous! Red tyre bands are owners choice but they suit the car and really grow on you.
LHD on UK roads always feels awkward to me but this car is so tight and responsive it is a dream to drive and you forget it after a few miles. Where are you now?
Beautiful interior with rebuilt seats of the correct type is a really comfy place to be.
Spotless engine compartment with hot engine. A good TR 4 cylinder is a fantastic engine. This one is larger capacity with all the internal mods you'd expect finished off with a pair of hungry webers. It flies, with loads of torque. It's a fidgety ride on country lanes but you get there with a big smile on your face.