PDA

View Full Version : TR2/3/3A TR3 BODY NUMBERS



habaneronut
11-05-2006, 12:26 AM
Got such great help on my last question, figured someone could help me with this one too. My car has only a Mulliner's body number plate (EB.....), no six digit number from Triumph, and I notice that lots of other owners also show only an EB number on the various registries. What happened to the Triumph body number plates? My car has a couple of holes under the Mulliner plate, was that where it was - is there an exact position above the battery box where these were supposed to be? Why have so many of them seemingly disappeared?

Fred

Don Elliott
11-05-2006, 08:15 AM
Yes the plate is normally secured using those 2 screw holes. They often corroded through and fell off by the acid spitting out from the battery. When I bought my TR3A (brand new in 1958) the dealer topped up the battery. He told me he did. He put so much water in it that it was up to just below the caps. I later found out that the voltage regulator (control box) had left the factory with a setting that produced 15 volts. This boiled out the battery acid and not only was the lower body number plate eaten through, but it also ate through the steel where the bend above the battery box is located - just below this plate. Since my restoration in 1987 to 1990, I have had no problems with corrosion here because the control box is set properly and I fill my battery to the correct level. And I don't have a plastic box for sitting the battery in like so many sidescreen TR owners have. BTW, TRA judges do not deduct points if you have one of these recent plastic battery boxes. The top flange of this non-original item covers the missing body plate location, so the competitor saves himself a lost point if he does not have this plate, because the judges can't see if it's there or not. I have a friend who used to work on TRs and he had losts of spare parts. He gave me a very nice body plate. It's not the right number, but it saves me losing a judges's point at TRA or VTR.

See the attachment how the recent battery box on this BRG TR3A covers the EB plate.

https://www.britishcarforum.com/ubbthreads/photopost/showphoto.php/photo/1919/ppuser/4127

Don Elliott
11-05-2006, 01:03 PM
Attached is the body number plate on my 1958 TR3A. It's from a later car and has 7 digits reverse stamped.

YankeeTR
11-05-2006, 01:22 PM
My question...The title for one of my 3's has the six digit body number. On my last driver, the commission # was on the title. i suppose the # used depended on the original dealer and what he used?

Does British Motor Heritage have the correct info on all the tags when you get their certificate?

Geo Hahn
11-05-2006, 05:57 PM
[ QUOTE ]
...Does British Motor Heritage have the correct info on all the tags when you get their certificate?

[/ QUOTE ]

The BMIHT cert I got for my 59 TR3A had the 7 digit body number but not an 'EB' number.

angelfj1
11-05-2006, 06:18 PM
Yes. If you send for the build record, that information will be provided. I posted a request for info regarding these numberplates recently. The lower tag, the one closest to the battery, gets the acid fumes and gets eaten away first. See the attached photo. Only half is left! I received a lead on this ompany:https://www.clarkespares.com/carparts.html

They are located within an hour's drive of me. I will be checking them out this week and I will post the details.

Don Elliott
11-05-2006, 07:46 PM
Frank - My original one looks only a little better than yours. If he can make a new one like the originals let me know. I've been looking for 15 years for someone who can make me one with the correct number for me.

Don

angelfj1
11-05-2006, 08:01 PM
You've got it Don!

Andrew Mace
11-05-2006, 09:04 PM
Just a historical note: the TR3B models had only one body plate, beginning with a TSF prefix, regardless of whether the commission number was a TSF series (1991cc) or TCF series (2138cc).

habaneronut
11-05-2006, 11:28 PM
Well, I suspected the battery acid might have something to do with the missing plates from an earlier thread that I looked at here. It's my understanding that there is no way to find out what your EB number should be, that Mulliners did not keep track of that like the other information on the build records. Is that correct? Also, if you don't have a build record already, you can get one on "non fancy" paper from the VTR much cheaper than the ones from Heritage Trust. Same information.

Fred

habaneronut
11-05-2006, 11:36 PM
And one more question, Frank. If your guy pans out and can make a good duplicate of the original Triumph plate, are you saying that the Mulliner's EB plate was mounted above this Triumph plate? Any particular spacing for total authenticity?

Fred

Don Elliott
11-06-2006, 12:36 AM
They are all spaced the same distance apart and the screws had different sizes and head diameters. The EB number should bear a relationship to the Comm. No. in some way. The upper brass plate was and still should be painted the same as the body colour and the lower brass plate should be brass. Mine came that way (like in the attachment above) when I bought the car new in 1958. TRA will not dock points if both are painted because they think otherwise.

https://www.triumphest2006.com/images/clubcars/30donelliott'str3.jpg
Photo from VTR 2001 in Colorado when I drove a total of 5225 miles

PeterK
11-06-2006, 09:38 AM
Frank,

Since I gave you the lead on these plates, don't forget to send me what you find out from the guy at Clarkes Spares too. Tanks.

angelfj1
11-06-2006, 10:38 AM
Don has it right! I am contacting them today and hope to drive up there Wednesday morning. I'll keep you guy informed. Don't worry.

YankeeTR
11-06-2006, 03:06 PM
Who was Mulliner? As in Mulliner's plate?

angelfj1
11-06-2006, 05:56 PM
Mulliners was the firm that made the body shells.

angelfj1
11-06-2006, 08:04 PM
Well folks. Just got some bad news. Todd Clarke of Clarke Spares and Restorations just emailed me. He does the embossed number tags for the BMC cars. Unfortunately he said his tooling is not correct for Triumphs. He did say he is looking into what would be required to do proper TR tags and will keep us posted. Sorry.

YankeeTR
11-06-2006, 09:04 PM
[ QUOTE ]
Mulliners was the firm that made the body shells.

[/ QUOTE ]
And NOW I know...Thanks.

Geo Hahn
11-07-2006, 11:54 AM
[ QUOTE ]
...The upper brass plate was and still should be painted the same as the body colour and the lower brass plate should be brass...

[/ QUOTE ]

Don -- Which one (EB or body number) is uppermost? I'm thinking the EB plate was the lower.

All -- Could someone (or a couple of someones) post pics of decent plates? I would like to see the font for the numbers that should be on my car (need to see 1,5,6,7 & 0 in particular.

Seems like a crafty sort with time on their hands could work a piece of brass with hand tools to make a credible replica. I suppose it wouldn't even have to be brass if it is the painted one but brass works pretty well.

And yes Don, sometimes TRA forgets that Triumphs weren't built in Lancaster Ohio.

For a general & almost related item, here is how I made a commission plate...

https://www.geocities.com/tucson_british_car_register/tr4-commission.html

angelfj1
11-07-2006, 12:38 PM
George: I must say that is a very nice commission plate. The problem with the body shell tags is that the numbers and letters are embossed, that is, they stand proud of the surface. I have been dickering around for a couple of years trying to find someone to make these. There is one US manufacturer of a hand operated embossing machine. They are Roovers Their model T-20 does the 3/8-inch font on 7/8-inch metal tape, which is what we need. However, I have not seen the font, so I can not be sure that it looks like our TR tags. This equipment is very expensive, approx. $3K. I need to find someone who owns one of these machines and get a sample made. One thought would be to get a sample alphabet and number set made to use as a master for casting a set of dies. These could then be used to make small runs of tags. Someone posted a comment about book binders making embossing dies out of bondo. If that person reads this post, could you please provide details on how this is done.

Harry_Ward
11-07-2006, 01:16 PM
George,

Took some pics of mine late last night and will post when I get home at 3:10 EST. I'm pretty sure the EB plate was on top with the numbers only plate directly below. They used two different sized -fat- round head flat screwdriver type screws for each plate. Need a very thin screw driver to fit either one. Almost looks like the screw that holds the fender bead on but smaller. Both plates on my car were spray painted rustoleum hunter green by the PO but it's nice to know one is brass and should clean up nice when I get around to doing the engine compartment.

angelfj1
11-07-2006, 02:41 PM
Yes. For sure the EB tag is the top most with the lower tag numbers only.

Harry_Ward
11-07-2006, 03:41 PM
Ugly as it is here's what they look like on my car. I tried some paint thinner on the bottom plate to see if it was brass underneath and sure enough it is.

https://i84.photobucket.com/albums/k3/Hyperode/tr3shots1017.jpg

Adrio
11-07-2006, 07:05 PM
I remember back in the Stone Age when I took shop in grades 7 & 8 we did something like this with copper. I think we made candy dishes. Anyhow I remember the trick was we heated the copper a bit then dipped it in a mild acid. This made the copper pliable enough that we could dish it out and make all sorts of shapes (we used small dowels about 3/16" diameter cut on an angle to push out the copper). I think we were even able to make "bass relief" pictures this way. Once you pushed out the material a bit it got work hardened and you had to repeat the heat acid process again. If I remember well it took many cycles to make a dish and a couple to make the bass relief.

I imagine you might find some info on the web that explains it. Only don't look for embossing but look for tooling copper or brass. It was not rocket science (I had to wait 8 years before they taught us that) just took time.

habaneronut
11-07-2006, 11:37 PM
Well now, this gets more interesting all the time. Were the plates always painted, or were some just left brass? That's what my Mulliners is, just plain brass, and if it's been cleaned, whoever did it did a really good job. Don't have the other plate.

And another question no one has addressed, I understand that there is no way to check the correlation between the Mulliners and your Triumph plate or commission number, is that correct?

Fred

Don Elliott
11-08-2006, 08:21 AM
The top plate (the EB plate) should be painted body colour. It was put on by the manufacturer who put the bodies together and painted the bodies (including that top plate) before they were sent to S-T for final assembly. The lower plate (just numbers) was installed at the factory during final assembly, therefore it was never painted. My TR3A arrived like that when I bought it brand new in 1958.

Geo Hahn
11-08-2006, 08:07 PM
[ QUOTE ]
...I understand that there is no way to check the correlation between the Mulliners and your Triumph plate or commission number, is that correct?

[/ QUOTE ]

It may not be possible to be exact, but there is a relationship. For example, my TS47905L has EB48439.

habaneronut
11-09-2006, 12:12 AM
I think you may have something there. My early 58 TS31073L has EB31195, a difference of 122, while your later car has a logically bigger difference of 534. After the discussion here, I had kind of decided that since my Mulliners is a nice brass, not painted, that maybe it wasn't the one that belonged with the car, but now I'm not so sure.

Fred

Don Elliott
11-09-2006, 09:10 AM
The bodies were assembled, painted and stored in one factory. Then they were trucked to S-T and selected for assembly according to some decision like "we need to make 25 red TRs" because the demand was higher for that colour and the dealers were asking the factory to build more red ones. So the red ones got built and the assembly was not done in sequence.

Harry_Ward
11-09-2006, 09:15 AM
Sorry, Let me be the one to throw off the curve.

1959
TS54794LO - EB53183

Mulliner #1058324 remove the 10 and it's all about the 50's.

/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/laugh.gif

Harry_Ward
11-09-2006, 09:19 AM
[ QUOTE ]
The bodies were assembled, painted and stored in one factory. Then they were trucked to S-T and selected for assembly according to some decision like "we need to make 25 red TRs" because the demand was higher for that colour and the dealers were asking the factory to build more red ones. So the red ones got built and the assembly was not done in sequence.

[/ QUOTE ]

Don,

Out of curiosity was it the complete body minus the doors, trunk lid, hood, and fenders. Or were they all attached and then bolted on the frame as a complete unit?

Geo Hahn
11-09-2006, 07:52 PM
[ QUOTE ]
...Or were they all attached and then bolted on the frame as a complete unit?

[/ QUOTE ]

From the pics I have seen of the assembly process I think they delivered a complete body including wings & doors.

I didn't mean to imply that there was a direct arithmetic relationship between the commission number and body number -- there were complete bodies that went elsewhere and a selection process at the assembly point that was clearly not FIFO so the relationship was approximate at best.

Harry_Ward
11-09-2006, 10:33 PM
George,

I was hoping there might have been some simple arthmetic to the numbers until I saw the differences in the numbers on your car and what Don said made sense. B.T.W. saw your build and it looks great. Wish I had a Mario in my area!

Bernard 94
06-20-2016, 10:25 AM
Hello,
I have a TR3 of march 1957. His commission number is TS16434L and engine number t816722e.
Do you know how I can find the body number EB... and the other number with 6 or 7 digits. The are both on a plate over the battery.
Many thanks,
Bernard

Geo Hahn
06-20-2016, 10:44 AM
Typically a Heritage Certificate ordered for your commission number will provide all the other original numbers (even the key codes):

https://www.heritage-motor-centre.co.uk/store/heritage-certificates-and-archive-services/heritage-certificates/car-traced-with-chassis-number.html

carpecursusII
03-14-2017, 09:07 PM
I'm gonna drag this thread out of the past, did anyone ever find a way to replicate the body tags?

pa297pass
03-15-2017, 12:46 PM
From a reply by HerronScott in another old thread:

Frank (angelfj) was doing it. He might have even been selling them through the Roadster Factory.

https://www.britishcarforum.com/bcf/s...rass-Body-Tags (https://www.britishcarforum.com/bcf/showthread.php?79352-Brass-Body-Tags)

https://www.zeni.net/trf/miniTR2TR3/3...=1366&s_ht=650 (https://www.zeni.net/trf/miniTR2TR3/38.php?s_wt=1366&s_ht=650)

carpecursusII
03-15-2017, 03:15 PM
I have been unable to contact Frank and TRF now lists them as NLS.