The Triumph Dolomite Club - Discussion Forum

The Number One Club for owners of Triumph's range of small saloons from the 1960s and 1970s.
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 03, 2020 12:42 am 
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Joined: Sun Nov 16, 2014 12:46 am
Posts: 241
Location: Midhurst, West Sussex.
As my first 2 cars were Dolomites (a 1300 and then a Sprint), some time ago I decided that I really should build myself a garage, get a Dolomite and do some kind of engine swap. Having seen Dan Brown's CA18 DET conversion a couple of years back, I thought that looked ideal.

However, the planned sequence of events has got slightly out of order!

I drew up some plans for a garage and put in an application for Planning Permission last April. Because I live in a converted farm building in the South Downs National Park (lots of restrictions on what they will allow to be built) the application was refused and it took several months of negotiations with the Planning Officer to agree a design and location on the land that was acceptable. This amended application went in last December and I should get approval for a large double garage in mid-February.

To get things underway, in December I thought I would source an 1850 subframe to send off to Dan for the modifications to take the CA18 DET engine. I managed to get hold of a rust free one that the seller had tucked away in his garage since 1997.

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I contacted Jon to order one of his Trackerjack brake kits and then managed to get hold of a pair of Sierra hubs complete with calipers.

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Then instead of getting on with stripping the subframe, a 1500HL that was for sale, that I had been keeping an eye on, suddenly got reduced considerably in price, resulting in a trip to Buckinghamshire last Sunday. The car was remarkably sound and had been stored in a garage for 25 years. The seller had recommissioned it with new brake hoses, fuel lines, clutch slave and master cylinders and he had done a fairly neat repair to the N/S rear subframe mounting. The floors, rear arches, A pillars, doors, headlight panels etc. were all very good and it still had its original sills (with a couple of small repairs) and jacking points. So it was purchased and trailered back to West Sussex.

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Having had a better look at the car, it does seem to be very solid and I think it will only need new front wings, possibly sills and a few smaller bits of welding. The interior is pretty good too.

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My plan is to treat any surface rust on the panels, touch in the paint locally and probably spray the underside with Waxoyl for now. It needs the clutch bleeding through properly and a new brake master cylinder, so I might convert it to a tandem system. I am also going to add some Sprint wheels and a front spoiler, which will make it look a bit smarter. Then I can use it as it is and concentrate on building the garage that I should have built before buying the car! In the meantime I can also look out for other parts for the build.

It's good to have another Dolomite again after selling my Sprint in 1992. They do seem extremely small now though!


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 07, 2020 6:22 pm 
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Joined: Sun Nov 16, 2014 12:46 am
Posts: 241
Location: Midhurst, West Sussex.
I managed to bleed the clutch through yesterday by removing the slave and having it above the level of the master cylinder. The pedal feels a lot better now, although I haven't driven it yet.

While I was doing this I noticed that the master cylinder had completely emptied since the weekend, despite it being up on ramps since then. The seller had told me that it probably needed a new master cylinder but I couldn't see any sign of fluid leaking around the servo. Looking under the car I noticed that the o/s rear brake back plate was covered in fluid, so it needs new wheel cylinders and, inevitably, shoes.

Looking at wheel cylinders online I noticed that there are single and tandem system types listed. What is the difference between the two? I want to convert it to tandem brakes eventually anyway, so it might make sense to do it now with the correct cylinders.

Has anyone used a slightly larger bore tandem master cylinder that would fit and that is readily available? I fitted a Ford P100 one to my Sprint 30 years ago but they seem to be quite rare now and I can't find any available with the fluid reservoir.


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 07, 2020 8:56 pm 
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Posts: 548
Location: Outer Hebrides
They're remarkably good door gaps on it, they all appear spot on, how unusual is that. :thumbsup:

_________________
Murdo DA

RNK 957W, Triumph Dolomite Sprint.

Built 26/6/1980 (one of the last built), Auto, Porcelain White - Genuine Mileage 52,820 (warranted).

Only 3 previous owners, (2 within the same family).

Supplied by Lavender Hill Garage Ltd, Enfield, London, by garage owner Jimmy Metcalfe on 30th September 1980 to Geoffery Robinson, Enfield.

Club Membership No: 2017092


Last edited by RSi on Fri Feb 07, 2020 10:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 07, 2020 10:37 pm 
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Joined: Sun Nov 16, 2014 12:46 am
Posts: 241
Location: Midhurst, West Sussex.
Quote:
There's remarkably good door gaps on it, they all appear spot on, how unusual is that. :thumbsup:
Yes, they are pretty good and the doors are quite sound too. I have managed to get most of the dent in the o/s rear one out since I took the photos. It needs a bit more work but will probably be easier when it's off the car for the re-spray.


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 01, 2020 10:11 pm 
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Posts: 241
Location: Midhurst, West Sussex.
After trying to get the leaking rear wheel cylinders sorted yesterday morning, only to discover that my 1500 seems to have 1300 rear brakes and so none of the parts I had bought would fit, I made a start on building the garage today.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 01, 2020 8:15 pm 
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Location: Midhurst, West Sussex.
Well, the weekend before last it was finally dry when I had some free time, so I managed to get the (1300) rear wheel cylinders and shoes fitted, the brakes bled through and the rear axle topped up with oil. I fitted the Sprint wheels, got it back on the ground and took it for a short run. The brakes felt really good but I discovered that the fuel gauge doesn't work, the shocks are all pretty knackered and the carbs need balancing. Apart form the fuel gauge, none of these was a great surprise!I have a set of GAZ springs and adjustable dampers but i was saving these for when the engine is changed, so i might have to find a good used standard set to tide me over, once everything is back to normal again.

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The new garage is coming along quite well, although the oak posts and oak for the front wall plate are all stuck in France. My timber supplier was due to collect them on the day that the lock-down started and unfortunately they had to shut down their business completely. My local concrete suppliers are still operating, so I am hoping that I might be able to get the floor slab completed in the next couple of weeks.

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 02, 2020 11:59 am 
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Joined: Wed May 17, 2017 5:28 pm
Posts: 1265
Location: NANTWICH.
That looks as though the garage will be a good size Glen. Is it going to be made of wood entirely? Are you fitting a ramp as well?
The car looks a very solid example 8)

Tony.

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PostPosted: Thu Apr 02, 2020 9:34 pm 
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Joined: Sun Nov 16, 2014 12:46 am
Posts: 241
Location: Midhurst, West Sussex.
Quote:
That looks as though the garage will be a good size Glen. Is it going to be made of wood entirely? Are you fitting a ramp as well?
The car looks a very solid example 8)

Tony.
Tony,

The garage will be 6.0m deep and 7.3m wide internally, so quite a good size. I did really want a triple garage, so I put in planning for a 4 bay one expecting the planners to knock me back to 3 but they would only allow a double. I could have tried for the 3 and gone to Appeal, if it was refused, but the whole process would have dragged on for ages.

It is going to be made of timber with a tiled roof and will be in the same style as the house, part of which is shown in this photo.

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I am going to fit this 2 post lift.

https://twinbusch.co.uk/product_info.ph ... cts_id=246

The masts fit below the joist level at either side of the door opening and I have had the roof structure designed so that the joists across the width of the door opening can be omitted, allowing a car to be lifted up as far as the rafters will permit. It will only lift to a maximum of 1.6m high but will still be a lot better than a trolley jack and axle stands.

Yes, the car is pretty solid, so hopefully it shouldn't require too much welding.


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PostPosted: Fri Apr 03, 2020 12:10 pm 
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Joined: Wed May 17, 2017 5:28 pm
Posts: 1265
Location: NANTWICH.
Hi Glen, very envious of a wooden garage as they are nice and warm :D It also matches the house really well.
I would love a ramp in my garage but i have a very low ceiling hight so out of the question :( Post some photos when it's finished.

Tony.

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 03, 2021 1:41 am 
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Joined: Sun Nov 16, 2014 12:46 am
Posts: 241
Location: Midhurst, West Sussex.
I managed to get the garage pretty much completed by October but then I got really busy with work and had to work at weekends in the run up to Christmas. My Son and I had last Sunday finishing off some of the internal work and I now just need to paint the floor under the side with the lift.

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I thought I would only be able to get a lift in that would go to 1.6m but by altering some of the roof timbers, so that the masts could go up above the joist, I managed to fit this one which lifts to 1.9m, plus a bit more with longer pad adjusters.

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On the other side wall I built a work bench and shelves.

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During the garage build I managed to source a lot of parts.

Trackerjack brakes.

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Subframe from Dan Brown.

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Engine and Sprint axle, again from Dan.

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Aluminium radiator.

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Intercooler.

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Plus Limited Slip Diff, GAZ coilovers, propshaft, Superflex bush kit, engine loom etc. etc.

We got the car up on the lift a couple of days ago and stripped out the 1500 mechanical parts

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Then put the sprint axle in, fitted the new subframe and re-attached all of the front suspension parts.

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The underside of the car is pretty good, with just a light layer of surface rust. I am going to have to replace the N/S chassis rail though, the previous owner repaired it around the subframe mount and has lost the tube that projects downwards. It looks as though it had a patch prior to this on the sloping section and there is now rust coming through next to the gearbox tunnel. I am going to replace both outer sills and the O/S rear jacking point is getting a bit weak. I will probably fit fibre-glass front wings and the O/S headlight panel is quite bad but the N/S is perfect.

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I am starting to clean off and treat the underside and do a few other minor bits and pieces while I am waiting for the gearbox to arrive. Once that is here I can switch the bellhousing over and trial fit the engine. The plan is to fit all the mechanical parts up, get everything working, then strip down, do the bodywork and respray, paint all of the mechanical parts and re-fit.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 03, 2021 11:51 am 
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Joined: Wed Oct 04, 2006 8:49 pm
Posts: 818
Location: Sutton,Surrey.
I do love a project and a BIG garage.

I would paint the floor with floor paint ASAP.
It keeps the floor clean.
Dust down when sweeping and spills are easily cleaned.

Not jealous really 👍

_________________
2005 Mercedes C Class V6 Diesel Turbo Daily Driver.
1980 Dolomite Sprint with a touch of BLTS
Balanced Lightened and Tweaked 13B Rotary and SuperCharged.
Rebuilding the Sprint time taken so far, 111Hrs@15/12/2020

Member TDC no 0471

Project 13B Sprint now on hold.
Covid-19 restrictions.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 03, 2021 3:38 pm 
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Joined: Sun Nov 16, 2014 12:46 am
Posts: 241
Location: Midhurst, West Sussex.
Quote:
I do love a project and a BIG garage.

I would paint the floor with floor paint ASAP.
It keeps the floor clean.
Dust down when sweeping and spills are easily cleaned.

Not jealous really 👍
I got just over half of the floor done with epoxy paint but hadn't got round to shifting everything over to do the other half. As you say, it makes a massive difference. I had to lay on the unpainted part to fit the Sprint axle and got covered in concrete dust. The other half will be a job for the evenings this week.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 03, 2021 9:59 pm 
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Location: Maidstone
Wow, amazing update! The garage looks to be a lovely place to work - I am also jealous!

Looking forward to see how that engine and box goes in. :thumbsup:


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 31, 2021 8:54 pm 
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Joined: Sun Nov 16, 2014 12:46 am
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Location: Midhurst, West Sussex.
Well I still haven't ordered the gearbox, mainly due to having to pay Scottish Power obscene amounts of money for electricity. However, I have now got them to admit that they have been billing us for off-peak on what is a single rate meter for 3.5 years. So they now need to refund for 76,000 Kw/hours! That would buy a nice Sprint, let alone a gearbox.

In the meantime I have stripped the boot floor.

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It's all very good except for this small hole behind the o/s rear wheel, which I need to weld up.

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The rust on the n/s rear quarter is fortunately just on the surface.

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Once I have treated the boot floor I am going to try and pull this dent out of the rear valance.

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I also took the diff flange off the Sprint axle and took it round to my Dad to modify it. He machined about 1.5mm off the recess that locates the prop-shaft, so that the TX1 Taxi prop-shaft will seat into it. He then ovalled out the holes in the TX 1 prop-shaft flange, so that M10 bolts would fit into the Sprint flange.

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It all seemed to work quite well, as Dan Brown said it would. I just need to check the required prop-shaft length and get it shortened to fit.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 01, 2021 7:51 am 
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Location: High Wycombe
Nothing to do the restoration, but I could never change gas supplier using one of those utility switch websites.

When I looked into it, EOn had charged me business rather than residential rates for 6.5 years. I pushed them and pushed them until I got a £1,300 refund !!

Well worth looking into any anomalies !!


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