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View Full Version : Introduction and a couple Triumph questions



MedicMan55
06-11-2005, 11:22 AM
Hello all, you probably didnt recognise my name, well because im new! I am just starting out in the world of LBCs, because i have an addiction. I have bought a couple cars over the years, and i still cant get Triumphs out of my head. They just look so cool!
I've been told by my friends that buying an LBC would be a bad idea because of their poor construction, is this true? Are they really badly put together cars? also, im a pretty big guy. I am around 6'1", will i have a problem with getting into these cars?
Medic

kindofblue
06-11-2005, 01:31 PM
They are not Japanese cars by any stretch. They weren't all that reliable in their day. Over the years, Unknowing mechanics and owners have hacked cars into various states of odd repair.
That being said, They are very easy and satisfying to work on. I would recommend joining your local club first and having a member look over any car before purchase. It is very important with any Triumph to look UNDER it for rust in the frame areas. Check out the buying guides at the Vintage Triumph Registry www.vtr.org. (https://www.vtr.org.)
Many of the "problems" that caused them to be labeled "unreliable" in their time have been solved over time. You can get many answers to problems here and through your club. (as well as updated parts through Moss, The Roadster Factory, and Victoria British). They aren't easy, but they are satisfying.

waltesefalcon
06-11-2005, 04:00 PM
No they aren't Japanese cars; they are rugged, simple, and as far as the mechanics go are intelligently thought out (sadly the same can't be said for their electrical systems), all virtues I have never seen in any of the Japanese cars, I have worked on. That being said if you want to get into one, try to find one that is a driver, and has no rust. On a Triumph you don't have to worry about that pesky unibody crap, like on an MGB, but its still nice to start with a solid car. They are very rewarding, and the horrible quirks they are known for, aren't really any worse than Chevy's Ford's or anything else, we Yanks just aren't familiar with them. Oh i did forget to mention, that you shouldn't have any problem with your height, I'm 6' and have no problem getting in or out of my Spitfires, though, if you are wide you might have a wee bit of trouble.

Bugeye58
06-11-2005, 04:10 PM
Welcome aboard, Medic. It sounds as though you have some ill informed friends. Triumphs, or any LBC, for that matter, were no worse quality wise than other cars of the day. I could tell you horror stories about '57 Chevy's for example.
Being 6'1" you shouldn't have any fit problems with the Triumph of your choice.
Any particular model or year you are looking for? I live just up the road froom Detroit, and can help with tips, etc. The Detroit Triumph Club has a pretty large membership and can probably help as well.
Have fun.
Jeff

LastDeadLast
06-11-2005, 04:45 PM
Medic,

Your friends are wrong. I think the these cars are actually built pretty well.. and it's been my experience that the electrical system really isn't that much worse than any other car of the same age.. Ok maybe a little worse… but my brother had a Road Runner that windshield wipers would come on when you turned the heater on.

Other than big things like engines, transmissions, and differentials anyone with a little mechanical inclination can work on them, even the carbs are pretty simple.

I'm 6'1" as well and fit in my 6 just fine. Between this forum, 6-pack.org, and vtr.org, there are not too many problems that can't be solved, it’s a very tight nit, non-pretentious community.

Welcome to the group and enjoy!

MedicMan55
06-11-2005, 05:38 PM
Well, ive always loved the look of the Spitfire. I love its tinyness, and how simple they are. I also love the GT-6, since its a coupe, and its cool looking too.
Bugeye58, ill probably be asking you questions about cars in the area, since you live so close by.

ObiRichKanobi
06-11-2005, 06:19 PM
Welcome from one of the resident Wedgeheads. I've had my TR7 for 3 years now, and after getting the initial problems sorted out, it has been a very reliable car. Fyi...Detroit seems to have a very active Triumph club...you should check them out. Here's a link to their website... Detroit Triumoh Club (https://www.detroittriumph.org/index.htm)

Welcome to the wonderful, wacky world of LBCs!

jsneddon
06-11-2005, 07:42 PM
[ QUOTE ]
and it's been my experience that the electrical system really isn't that much worse than any other car of the same age.. Ok maybe a little worse… but my brother had a Road Runner that windshield wipers would come on when you turned the heater on.


[/ QUOTE ]

LOL... that reminds me of my Dodge Dart that only I could drive because I knew the right combination of jiggling the key and the gearshift at the same time to get it to work....

and then the 85 buick that died if you turned the steering wheel all the way to the right....

All old cars have sketchy at best electricals. Lucas got a bad rap. It's just wires and connectors. I highly doubt that Lucas even made the wires.

It's no more "bad" than any other car for the age. Just buy the absolute best you can for the money you want to spend and stay away from rusty frames. Body and frame work will cost you thousands more than the mechanical stuff.

mailbox
06-11-2005, 07:52 PM
Any thing this old is going to have problems. I have found my TR7 fairly easy to work on and has the same problem as any car it's age. I will admit I have a bit of trouble getting in and out of mine, but I love that "my butts inches off the ground" feeling. /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif

Geo Hahn
06-12-2005, 01:47 AM
[ QUOTE ]
...the Spitfire. I love its tinyness, and how simple they are...

[/ QUOTE ]

And there you have hit on a key quality. What these cars lack in sophistication and reliability is amply offset by the simplicity of design. I'm no mechanical genius but in 30+ years have yet to have a problem that I couldn't fix (sometimes along the side of the road or in a motel parking lot).

Banjo
06-12-2005, 09:21 PM
I've never felt that LBCs were built any worse than any of thier contemporaries. A lot of "Muscle Car guys" seem to have an ingrained fear of anything not built by the UAW Union. I personally believe they were ahead of anything being built here at the same time. Most LBCs were equipped with front disc brakes and rack and pinion steering years before any of the "Big Three" even considered them.
As for size, I am 6'2" and I fit comfortably in most LBCs. the only ones I could say to "try on" before you buy would be the Sprite/ Midgets and Morgans. They can be tight.

MedicMan55
06-12-2005, 11:30 PM
I knew that Sprites and midgets were going small for me. I like the Spitfire and the GT-6 more. THe Sprites and Midgets are just a little too small, it makes me feel a bit scared riding in that tiny of a car.

Where do you guys buy these cars? Ive been looking in the paper, which is worthless. Ive looked on ebay, and most of those guys want too much for their cars. Where should I look?

Medic

Geo Hahn
06-13-2005, 12:09 AM
You should consider joining the local club as they will be a wealth of information and support when looking for a car -- also many good LBCs change hands by word-of-mouth among club members.

The VTR classifieds are also a good place to look:

https://www.vtr.org/classifieds/index.php

You should also look at classified portion of this forum and perhaps post a 'want to buy' ad.

MedicMan55
06-13-2005, 03:46 PM
What should i be looking for when i look at triumphs? I obviously wont buy a rusty car, but are there other things that i need to keep in mind about these cars? Engine problems, or bad seats or things like that.

Medic

Alan_Myers
06-13-2005, 07:10 PM
Hi,

I suggest checking out the model-by-model descriptions at the Vintage Triumph Register (https://www.vtr.org/)

Also, there are a number of excellent, model specific books that are loaded with lots and lots of detail. Bill Piggot's "Original Triumph..." series are great. Roger Williams' "Restoring Triumph..." series give more in depth discussion of how the cars are put together. Roger also has an "Improving Triumph..." series especially for the 'tuners' and 'tweakers' among us. You can find these on Amazon.

Once you focus in on a model, I'd suggest picking up a service manual for it right away. That can be a superb source of information. The free catalogs offered by Victoria British and Moss Motors are also very useful with all their exploded views and some technical tidbits scattered throughout.

Finally, the suggestion about joining a local British Car or Triumph club is a very good one. Heck, you might be able to mooch a ride, or even a brief test drive, to see for yourself how a particular model fits and feels.

Cheers!

Alan

Ab Crevoiserat
06-14-2005, 09:28 AM
I think that you should get the car that you like and if that is a Spitfire or GT6 than then that is what you should get, otherwise you won't be happy and isn't that the point of owning an LBC. As for being 6'1" well I don't really see that as a problem, I'm 6'1", 235lbs and I fit into my 6 with no probleme. I have also driven Spits and fit fine. There is also a member of my local club that is 6'4" and I'm guessing is about 250 lbs and he drives his TR3 regularly. Just take your time and ask questions, you'll find the right car for you. Good hunting.

78Z
06-14-2005, 01:34 PM
[ QUOTE ]
I knew that Sprites and midgets were going small for me. I like the Spitfire and the GT-6 more. THe Sprites and Midgets are just a little too small, it makes me feel a bit scared riding in that tiny of a car.

Where do you guys buy these cars? Ive been looking in the paper, which is worthless. Ive looked on ebay, and most of those guys want too much for their cars. Where should I look?

Medic

[/ QUOTE ]

A Spitfire is suprisingly roomy inside. More so than a Miata even. I'm 6' and fit no problem. Seats aren't comfortable for more than about an 1 hr though.

MedicMan55
06-14-2005, 11:05 PM
Ive found a GT6 on ebay, and its in running order. The only thing is that its somewhat rusty. The auction ends soon, so i dont know what to do. Should i just wait for another?

Medic

vagt6
06-15-2005, 09:38 AM
MedicMan, please don't buy a rusty GT6. Unless, of course, you own a body repair shop with employees who have lots of spare time. /ubbthreads/images/graemlins/nonod.gif

Body work is the most expensive, and difficult part of GT6 restoration. Further, it's relatively difficult to locate body techs who are fluent with LBC repairs.

Purchase an example with as little rust as possible, one that someone else has restored successfully. Wait for the best possible car your budget will allow. If you are dead-set to buy a GT6, it may be prudent to stretch your budget if the right one comes along (i.e., nicely restored, no rust). Find one that someone else has put their heart, soul and pocketbook into and must sell for less than their investment because of the low market value of these lovely cars.

Wait, be patient, a GT6 with your name on it is out there, waiting . . .

Ab Crevoiserat
06-15-2005, 07:13 PM
MedicMan, Be paitent you will find the car thats right for you. Try this page, I bought my 6 thru them and was ans still am very happyhttps://www.cars-on-line.com/triumph.html
Triumph Cars For Sale

Ab Crevoiserat
06-15-2005, 07:14 PM
Sorry its https://www.cars-on-line.com/triumph.html
Triumph Cars For Sale