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 Post subject: LFP 48P
PostPosted: Fri Apr 21, 2023 11:49 pm 
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Future Club member hopefully!
Future Club member hopefully!

Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2023 10:44 pm
Posts: 10
My project: LFP 48P

The aim:

With a huge amount of naivety, and hopefully lots of help from fellow TDC members and enthusiasts, I'm hoping to get my 1975 1850 back on the road. The aim is to have it running and road worthy before I turn 40: 20th December 2027.

I don't own many tools, but a neighbour has, kindly, already offered me the loan of his (I get the impression he has a lot...).
With a 2 and a half year old and another one on the way my time is limited.
I really don't know anything about how to fix cars.

It's never going to be concours: I just want to be able to enjoy driving it safely: for myself, with my wife and young kids, wider family and friends.

The background:

15th December 2007 I was driving home from Nottingham when the car started making a horrendous noise. Long story short I was recovered home with the recorded fault being 'BIG ENDS':

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Since then:

The car has very kindly been stored by others. Most recently in a barn for at least 12 years, maybe longer. It was transported home (by a great guy) last Saturday (15th April 2023) where I was able to have a better look around it, and my daughter and nieces had a great play in it (which was worth bringing it home for alone):

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The diagnosis:

This looks pretty terrible:

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This isn't looking great either:

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Some other photos:

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I bought these hoping they would somehow help and make up for my lack of practical/technical skills and knowledge:

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Action plan

I'm hoping to pull together a jobs list so I know what I'm actually facing. I can then split that into:

> Things I can do (limited)
> Things I can hopefully learn how to do with help, YouTube and my trusty books (let's see)
> Things I'll never be able to do (probably quite a lot)

Real beginner quick fire questions:

1. Is there anything I should immediately be looking out for? I'm thinking common issues/weak points which which will go downhill fast, now that the car is outside (see Q2).

2. Reading up car covers seem to be a bit of a crowd divider: some are for them (protection), others against (traps moisture, makes it worse etc.). What's the collective view? I have bought a car cover, conscious I'm lucky it's been stored indoors the last 12+ years and I don't want it to now rapidly deteriorate.

3. There was quite a bit of paint missing from the sills or that came off during the inaugural wash. I'd assume the paint provides some level of protection against the elements. Is it worth repainting these by hand for the short term? As per the above photos, I have a tin...

4. Really basic question: any tips for how to clean up the bumpers? I'm hoping they are restorable, rather than needing to be replaced (photo above).

Open house, Bedfordshire:

For those of you with meticulous cars and a scratch to itch on fixing up a car: you are always welcome at my house. I can provide unlimited tea, biscuits and cake.

Thanks,

Phil


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 Post subject: Re: LFP 48P
PostPosted: Mon Apr 24, 2023 7:37 pm 
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TDC Shropshire Area Organiser

Joined: Sun Aug 21, 2011 5:12 pm
Posts: 7098
Location: Highley, Shropshire
The very first thing you must do, is a thorough and critical assessment of the condition of the body and underbody. Get a Dolomite expert to help you with this. With your admitted ignorance of any mechanical or body restoration techniques, you are probably going to need to employ a welder to take care of bodywork issues (you seem to have a few) which will probably end up being more extensive and expensive than you've budgeted for. So make sure before you start that you know what you are up against!

On a more cheerful note, the engine issues that caused the original layup are not a big deal. I'd be surprised if the "big end" diagnosis is correct, it's not something that usually troubles this engine, but even if it is correct, it's fixable, though a good used engine may be the cheapest solution.

Don't worry about the sill paint, the black that is showing through is the proper original colour and the red that is peeling is a poorly applied mistake by a later owner.

On the bumper issue, try a bit of chrome cleaner and elbow grease, but I wouldn't hold your breath! They look a bit far gone to me, but if your goal is "usable" rather than "excellent" you may get away with it. If you can't live with the results, new bumper sections turn up from time to time, as well as better-than-yours used examples. I might have a better front one and a NOS rear centre section in my own collection of bits.

But bumpers are a bit academic at this stage, you need to get the body right first!

_________________
'73 2 door Toledo with Vauxhall Carlton 2.0 8v engine (The Carledo)
'78 Sprint Auto with Vauxhall Omega 2.2 16v engine (The Dolomega)
'72 Triumph 1500FWD in Slate Grey, Now with RWD and Carledo powertrain!

Maverick Triumph, Servicing, Repairs, Electrical, Recomissioning, MOT prep, Trackerjack brake fitting service.
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 Post subject: Re: LFP 48P
PostPosted: Tue Apr 25, 2023 9:30 am 
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Future Club member hopefully!
Future Club member hopefully!

Joined: Thu Apr 14, 2022 2:55 pm
Posts: 68
Looks a very worthwhile project, my own 1850 was is a far worse condition (bodily wise) but time (and money) put it right, as long as you have the passion and the enthusiasm then everything is possible.

I hope we can maintain both for you, please keep us updated.

A couple of answers for you:

Car covers. I too had to leave my project car outside, it was in a very exposed place, where the sea would leave a deposit of salt on the car (that you could write with your finger in), so I purchased a cover. My best advise on what cover to buy is to buy the best you can afford, buy one of a material that allows the moisture to wick off of the vehicle, through the cover to the atmosphere. I would often see the cover after it had rained showing the contours of the car so it was "obviously" wet under there, however, once the wind blew the car was evidently dry and not really wet at all, it was more the moisture lying on the top rather than underneath. Also, if you do get a cover, wax the car with a good quality car wax regularly, this helps a lot.

Bumpers: I thought this sounded completely daft but having tried it myself it does actually work, I don't think its a long term answer and certainly not an alternative to replating but if you scrunch up (into a ball) normal kitchen foil, dip it in warm water and then rub it over the bumpers it does actually improve them a great deal, as I say, I was cynical when I first heard of it but it does make a significant difference in their appearance, try it, it costs nothing!

Best of luck and keep the questions coming.


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 Post subject: Re: LFP 48P
PostPosted: Tue Apr 25, 2023 2:40 pm 
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TDC Member
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Joined: Wed Nov 15, 2017 3:35 pm
Posts: 965
Location: Filey, North Yorkshire
Good luck!

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 Post subject: Re: LFP 48P
PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2023 2:28 pm 
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Future Club member hopefully!
Future Club member hopefully!

Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2023 10:44 pm
Posts: 10
Thanks for your replies all.

Since posting I have wondered if this thread would sit better in the 'Buying Advice & Tips For New Owners' section as there will likely be more questions than restoration initially, but I'll let the moderators decide...
Quote:
The very first thing you must do, is a thorough and critical assessment of the condition of the body and underbody. Get a Dolomite expert to help you with this. With your admitted ignorance of any mechanical or body restoration techniques, you are probably going to need to employ a welder to take care of bodywork issues (you seem to have a few) which will probably end up being more extensive and expensive than you've budgeted for. So make sure before you start that you know what you are up against!

On a more cheerful note, the engine issues that caused the original layup are not a big deal. I'd be surprised if the "big end" diagnosis is correct, it's not something that usually troubles this engine, but even if it is correct, it's fixable, though a good used engine may be the cheapest solution.

...

But bumpers are a bit academic at this stage, you need to get the body right first!
A TDC member has kindly offered to come over to look at the car to provide advice for exactly that reason: I don't really know what I'm looking at/for. This will be a huge help and help me to create the three tier list mentioned in my first post.

Good news on the engine front, albeit point on engine swap noted. Two people in the Facebook group have already said they have an 1850 engine available and there is also one on eBay, which is seemingly being re-listed until is sells.

Noted on the bumper point(!), I just thought it was something I could do now to feel like some progress was being made... an easy win to get me started!
Quote:
Car covers... My best advise on what cover to buy is to buy the best you can afford, buy one of a material that allows the moisture to wick off of the vehicle, through the cover to the atmosphere... Also, if you do get a cover, wax the car with a good quality car wax regularly, this helps a lot.

Bumpers: I thought this sounded completely daft but having tried it myself it does actually work, I don't think its a long term answer and certainly not an alternative to replating but if you scrunch up (into a ball) normal kitchen foil, dip it in warm water and then rub it over the bumpers it does actually improve them a great deal, as I say, I was cynical when I first heard of it but it does make a significant difference in their appearance, try it, it costs nothing!
I purchased the Eclipse Outdoor Car Cover based on a recommendation I read elsewhere in this forum, which claims to offer the features you mention so hopefully it will prove to be a good purchase. I originally thought the car would be OK during the summer uncovered, but I'm already learning time to 'work' on it has been hard to find. Once I've got it in the right place on my drive (see below) I'll pop it on.

One of my brothers works for Autoglym so I'l ask him for some wax recommendations.

I'll give the kitchen foil trick a go and report back - thanks for the tip!

---

I tried moving the car on my drive today, but with the hand break off and out of gear I couldn't get it to budge. The chap who moved the car for me did use a lump hammer to free up one of the rear wheels. I'm wondering if it has perhaps ceased up again, but before I reach for the hammer could it be anything else... and any tips on where to aim?!

Phil


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 Post subject: Re: LFP 48P
PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2023 7:36 pm 
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Future Club member hopefully!
Future Club member hopefully!

Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2023 10:44 pm
Posts: 10
So having jacked up all for corners of the car in turn, it’s the front left and back right wheels which are the problem. Not a lot in it: front left barely turns, back right doesn’t budge.

I’ll take each of the wheels off, give everything a good clean and see if soaking all and any moving parts in WD40 helps.

Phil


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 Post subject: Re: LFP 48P
PostPosted: Wed Apr 26, 2023 10:45 pm 
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TDC West Mids Area Organiser
User avatar

Joined: Thu Sep 28, 2006 1:13 pm
Posts: 13398
Location: Over here...can't you see me?
Quote:
Noted on the bumper point(!), I just thought it was something I could do now to feel like some progress was being made... an easy win to get me started!
Absolutely…anything that gives you a feeling of achievement will boost enthusiasm.

You’ll basically need to overhaul the rear brakes; I tend to park Dolomites with the hand brake off these days. The fronts is an easy ‘fix’ if you don’t mind losing your fluid; two bolts and a union sees the callipers removed! That’ll get it mobile again and I guarantee the callipers will need an overhaul and the fluid will be dead too. If your drive is as flat as it looks, you could remove the rear shoes until you’re ready to do a proper job on the rear system…


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 Post subject: Re: LFP 48P
PostPosted: Fri Apr 28, 2023 11:34 am 
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TDC Oxfordshire Area Organiser

Joined: Sun Oct 08, 2006 4:32 pm
Posts: 479
All the best with the project Phil - looks a very worthwhile project.

As Alun states, even small differences can really boost enthusiasm and I am sure a good cut 'n' polish would really lift the car, even if it is rusty!

I found with my project (which was in far poorer condition by the looks of your pictures) that just chipping away at the jobs one by one, rather than looking at the project as a whole was far less daunting... I did have sleepless night's initially!

Those manuals will be invaluable along with this forum for advice.

I used a mobile welder for some of my repairs - Cills mainly. Unfortunately, he isn't trading anymore, but there may be a local company to you that may be able to help.

Keep us posted Phil!

BW
MC

_________________
Matt Cotton

TDC Oxfordshire Area Organiser.
TDC/TSSC group meeting - 3rd Tuesday of the month


1980 1500HL - OPD
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