August 19, 2021

E-Type MOT day!

Both the Jaguar E-Types pictured had their MOT’s done yesterday. The gold 1971 Jaguar E-Type V12 Series 3 is currently with us for storage at

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Flaky Lancia lights.

Lydia has been helping Matt with the headlights for the 1978 Lancia Beta. After the paint was found to be flaking off them, they were

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Those headlight surrounds look Beta!

We’ve given the headlight surrounds of our 1978 Lancia Beta a fresh new look with a lick of paint. When the car arrived in with us the paint had flaked off and although the imperfections were not glaringly obvious we knew a cleaner look would improve the overall appeal. So here we have it, with nice new painted headlight surrounds.

1954 Jaguar Mk VII home-time

She’s been with us in the workshops for sometime now but today we bid farewell to our 1954 Jaguar Mk VII.

Looking beautiful and fresh, the car is now ready to be driven and enjoyed, hopefully to have many many more years out on the country roads.

Source: Lancaster Insurance – the Jaguar Mk VII at 70

Over 70 years ago, Jaguar introduced a large saloon that epitomised the famous slogan ‘Grace, Space, Pace’. Here are some useful facts.

  1. Jaguar kept the Mk. VII a secret until its debut at Grosvenor House on 16th October 1950.
  2. The sales material claimed the Mk. VII was ‘An entirely new car of unparalleled beauty’ – and it was undoubtedly a star of Earls Court -The Mk. VII replaced the Mk. V; there was no “Jaguar Mk. VI” as the name was registered to Bentley.
  3. The XK120 was intended as the test-bed for the Mk. VII’s 3442cc DOHC straight-six engine.
  4. The initial price was £1,693, which included adjustable steering, a sliding roof, fog lamps, and (naturally) leather upholstery.
  5. The top speed was a shade over 100 mph – an astounding achievement for the period.
  6. On 25th April 1952 Autocar magazine concluded the Mk. VII was an outstanding car. It has extremely good performance, is very comfortable to drive and to ride in, is very completely equipped, has a modern yet dignified appearance and is very good value – indeed, it is in that respect phenomenal.
  7. 1952 saw the Mk.VII became the first Jaguar available with Borg Warner automatic transmission; albeit on export models only.
  8. Laycock de Normanville overdrive became an optional extra in 1954.
  9. Stirling Moss drove a Mk. VII to victory at the 1952 and 1953 International Trophy Production Touring Car race at Silverstone. Ian Appleyard equalled this feat in 1954.
  10. In September 1954 the Mk. VII was facelifted as the Mk. VIIM, featuring externally mounted auxiliary lamps, improved transmission and flashing indicators.
  11. Automatic transmission was now available on the home market, and Autocar of 11th May 1956 descried the Borg Warner-equipped Jaguar as ‘a happy marriage’.
  12. Famous Mk. VII owners included Diana Dors, Jack Hawkins, Peter Sellers and HM The Queen Mother.
  13. Browns Lane fitted their Mk. VII test-car, registration KRW 621, with lightweight magnesium body panels, disc brakes, modified suspension and the D-Type
  14. The Jaguar crewed by Ronnie Adams, Frank Biggar and Derek Johnstone took first place at the 26th Monte Carlo Rally in 1956.
  15. Later that year, the Mk. VIII made its bow at the London Motor Show.
  16. As compared with its predecessor, the latest model sported a single-piece windscreen and a choice of two-tone paint finishes. The 3.4-litre engine now sported a modified “B-Type” cylinder head. Jaguar also enhanced the list of equipment, and the automatic version even boasted a clock for the rear passengers.
  17. In 1958, the Mk. IX featured the famous 3.8-litre engine and – “firsts” for a Jaguar – power-assisted steering and all-disc brakes as standard.
  18. Motor Sport described the Mk. IX as: the business executive’s ideal motor-car, handsome, impressive, able to hurry to the tune of 0-60 mph in under 19 secs and a top speed of over 115 mph when called upon, yet luxuriously and sensibly appointed and equipped.
  19. British films frequently used the Mk. VII family as screen getaway cars into the early 1960s – perhaps most famously in The Fast Lady.
  1. The Mk. X replaced the Mk. IX in October 1961 – by which time the previous generation of “Big Jaguars” had re-defined an entire market sector.

Play in the wheel bearings…

Dave has been inspecting the 1975 Magenta Triumph TR6 and found that there was play in the two near-side wheel bearings. You can see this in the two videos in this blog post. He also found that there were a few threads ripped out, due to just being worn out by people taking the car apart over the years. You can see in one of the photos that bits of aluminium have got stuck on the thread and are coming off. The threads are going to get helicoiled.

Carpet re-fresh continues for the DB 2/4.

Kath has been continuing her work on the 1955 Aston Martin DB 2/4’s carpet. This time, she’s re-made the left-hand footwell carpet, right-hand boot side panel, right-hand rear floor, right-hand rear under-seat, right-hand rear corner, right-hand rear sill, rear quarter panel (which needs the wood in still) and rear scuttle panel.

E-Type MOT day!

Both the Jaguar E-Types pictured had their MOT’s done yesterday. The gold 1971 Jaguar E-Type V12 Series 3 is currently with us for storage at our Bentwaters hangar. The green 1968 Jaguar E-Type Series 1.5 4.2 came to us for MOT preparation. If you are looking for storage for your classic vehicle or need it prepared for its MOT, please don’t hesitate to contact us!

New in, 1976 Jaguar XJ6!

New into the workshop is this 1976 Jaguar XJ6. It’s got issues with its carburettors, meaning the engine isn’t running right. Ady will be in charge of looking over this one for us, being our engine expert.

Mustang gets a thorough inspection.

Paul has been giving our 1967 Ford Mustang 350 a thorough check over and noting down any issues he does find. So far, he’s found that the wheels aren’t sitting quite right and there’s a leak coming from the underside that needs further investigation work.

New in, Citroen C6.

New into us is this 2010 Citroen C6. It’s come in for a full valet and for all the wheels to be refurbished.

Brake trouble on the Jaguar.

The 1968 Jaguar E-type Series 1.5 4.2, unfortunately, failed on its MOT test this week. The front brake piston and rear brakes weren’t working so it’s come back into the workshop to have these problems fixed.

Work begins on the red MG TF.

Dave has been working on the red 1954 MG TF. The door wasn’t fitting properly, so he’s sorted adjusted that. The rubber seal around one of the dials on the dash had disintegrated so a new one was put in its place. And Dave’s put in a new engine solenoid.

Ferrari Daytona’s peeling steering rack…

We’ve found that the paint was flaking off the steering rack of the 1979 Arrow Ferrari Daytona, so it was taken into the paint shop. There, Lydia blasted as much paint off as she could with an air gun and then took the rest off with a combination of a blade, a grinder attachment on a drill and thinners with a red scotch pad. The steering rack is now clean and masked up, ready to go in the spray booth.

Flaky Lancia lights.

Lydia has been helping Matt with the headlights for the 1978 Lancia Beta. After the paint was found to be flaking off them, they were taken into the paint shop, where Matt removed the existing paint completely and then primed them. Lydia then sanded down the primer to obtain a smooth finish for the final painting stage. They’re now all masked up again and ready for the spray booth!

Headlining work begins on the BMW.

Brian has been getting on with renewing the headlining in the 1990 BMW 750iL. He started off by removing all the panels and parts that went onto the headlining and were holding it in place. Once these were all taken off, the board with the headlining on could come out via the boot of the car. Brian could then start taking the original headlining fabric off the board.