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View Full Version : There need to be more old british cars on the road



gsalt57tr3
07-03-2008, 05:43 AM
I was coming into work tonight (I work graveyard) and about 4 blocks before I got to work, there was a bugeye sprite coming the other way, doing about 50 in a 35 zone.

As I pull into the parking lot, a police car practically followed me in. Seems there was an old sports car speeding sighted and so of course it must have been me...

The guy didn't know the difference between a bugeye sprite and a TR3.

tomshobby
07-03-2008, 08:25 AM
Shirley and I are doing our best to help out! On our way home Tuesday evening from a day trip of more than 500 miles we passed the 10,000 mile mark for the less than three years we have owned our TR6. About 7,000 of those miles since the engine build was finished last July. And 99.999% of those have been top down.

Andrew Mace
07-03-2008, 08:33 AM
...The guy didn't know the difference between a bugeye sprite and a TR3. True confession: when I was about five years old (back when these cars both were new), my childlike mind thought that a TR3 was nothing more than a Bugeye that had grown up! :smile:

vettedog72
07-03-2008, 08:35 AM
Seldom do you see a British sports car in Louisiana. (it may be the acid rain)

Dudly
07-03-2008, 08:50 AM
I have owned my 79 Spit for about a month. It's been a blast getting all the little things up an running, (Carb re-build w/ Water choke, cap, rotor, plugs and wires, as well as new skins). The other day kind of over cast, I was driving my VW, pulled up to a very nice big Healey, gave the guy a compliment, told him about my Spit, he asked, "Well Why aren't you driving her"? GOOD POINT.

Have driven her to work for the first time today (overcast and threats of rain), and have driven her every chance I get. I didn't buy her just to keep in a garage and tinker!

Keep them on the road!!

68tr
07-03-2008, 09:15 AM
Well on my way to work yesterday I saw a hardtop green Spit and a Yellow TR7. The TR7 I regularly see, the Spit was new. Both guys heading to work on I95 in northern mass. There was also a green alfa Spider (thought they were all red) and a red MGB.
Occasionally I see the odd XKE and a stipped out (like it just came/went to the track) XK120 (black).

They are out there in New England!

MK

donbmw
07-03-2008, 09:21 AM
Seldom do you see a British sports car in Louisiana. (it may be the acid rain)

I drive my TR3 every weekend and 2 - 3 times a week. Some MG everynow and then. Since gas has been going up there have been alot of small cars that looked like the got them out of the woods.

Don

Tinster
07-03-2008, 09:31 AM
Shirley and I are doing our best to help out! On our way home Tuesday evening from a day trip of more than 500 miles we passed the 10,000 mile mark for the less than three years we have owned our TR6. About 7,000 of those miles since the engine build was finished last July. And 99.999% of those have been top down.

<span style="color: #006600">Tom, is that supposed to read a 50 mile day trip? :jester:

I cannot comprehend 500 miles from a TR6 in a single day. My goodness,
your 500 mi day trip exceeds my total for year-to-date 2008.

Just curious and please be honest. How many times did the car
break down during the 10,000 miles? What was the most common item
that caused the break downs?

Thanks, I'm restocking my spare parts bin.

dale</span>

Dudly
07-03-2008, 09:38 AM
Seldom do you see a British sports car in Louisiana. (it may be the acid rain)

I drive my TR3 every weekend and 2 - 3 times a week. Some MG everynow and then. Since gas has been going up there have been alot of small cars that looked like the got them out of the woods.

Don

That was my point the other day, and I stand by it. These days with gas prices so dear, I believe that folks are more inclined to look to an LBC as a fun "project" car, and not the, with all due respect, V8 muscle car.

While at the Mid-Ohio Vintage races this past weekend I met two couples from Wisconson, both had been on the road for a week and a half, one couple in a TR3 the other in a bugeye. They were having a blast.

tomshobby
07-03-2008, 09:57 AM
Hi Dale,

The total repairs. The throw-out bearing a couple weeks ago. Installed aluminum flywheel and clutch kit while it was apart. Torn down on Saturday evening, ordered parts on Monday, went for a 100 mile drive on Friday.

And had a carb diaphragm tear a hole on the way home Tuesday. Drove a couple miles to the local World Wide Auto Parts store and had back running Wednesday.

That is all. The bearing was my fault for not replacing it last year because it seemed fine at the time.

Misread your post Dale, Before last July and the last 7,000 miles I had to build the engine. There were some problems when we bought the car and they got to the point of needing to be repaired.

Tinster
07-03-2008, 10:10 AM
That drive record is truly amazing!!

I also had the replace the clutch system and
everything that goes into the hydraulics.

I'm still stunned at 500 miles without breaking down.

d

tomshobby
07-03-2008, 10:17 AM
Good to hear Dale. I drove these cars years ago for my only vehicle and put on many miles. I found them to be dependable and able to withstand some abuse. I drive today with the same confidence.

donbmw
07-03-2008, 11:02 AM
Shirley and I are doing our best to help out! On our way home Tuesday evening from a day trip of more than 500 miles we passed the 10,000 mile mark for the less than three years we have owned our TR6. About 7,000 of those miles since the engine build was finished last July. And 99.999% of those have been top down.

<span style="color: #006600">Tom, is that supposed to read a 50 mile day trip? :jester:

I cannot comprehend 500 miles from a TR6 in a single day. My goodness,
your 500 mi day trip exceeds my total for year-to-date 2008.

Just curious and please be honest. How many times did the car
break down during the 10,000 miles? What was the most common item
that caused the break downs?

Thanks, I'm restocking my spare parts bin.

dale</span>

Dale

Since I have had my TR3 on the road for the last 10 years. There has been some break downs but it has not stopped mep donin many 300 or more miles a day and a couple of 500 to 600 mile days. It is always an adventure when traveling with these cars. That is also the fun of it. The first weekend trip 200 miles from home and the car quit and there was no ignition. Had to have the son-inlaw come get us then found the rotor was bad and started carring rotors have had that happen a couple of times. The worst break down was the motor through a rod in Iowa, rented a Uhaul to get home. There will always be something that will happen no mater what you drive even with new cars.

Don

Andrew Mace
07-03-2008, 11:02 AM
...I cannot comprehend 500 miles from a TR6 in a single day....Dale, in 1997, I "navigated" the better part of 2000 miles from Eastern New York to Fort Worth, Texas, in a three-day sprint to the VTR National Convention. (Note: the driver/car owner had already driven another 150 miles from the Boston, MA, area to pick me up). We actually made the trip back in a two-day supersprint! (And, as you're all probably tired of hearing about by now, I did a solo, 2550-mile round trip from NY to Minnesota and back in the Herald in 2002....)

TR3driver
07-03-2008, 12:01 PM
I understand Herman is driving both ways to this year's VTR in his TR250. Would only be 5000 miles round-trip, but he's also taking a scenic route through Wyoming and the Dakotas, so I'm guessing it will be closer to 6000.

And of course I drove the Stag over 5000 RT myself to the 2005 VTR in IL. Driving solo, so took me almost 3 days to get there (gotta sleep sometime).

These cars can be very reliable, in nearly stock form. Herman has done lots of things to his TR250 (including finally installing one of his 5-speed conversions), but it's more because he enjoys doing it than because they were necessary. My 71 Stag was totally stock, except I added the optional overdrive and was still running the "backup" Facet fuel pump after the contacts wore out on the stock SU electric.

backroadsjeff
07-03-2008, 12:16 PM
It may well have been me as I haven't taken the hardtop off yet and was on both 95 south and 95 north yesterday morning.
Had the Spitfire up to 75mph and with the O/D in was quite pleasant.

I couldn't take the TR6 because of starting problems (see other posts) and was going to get my 911 from the shop where I was having the windshield seal replaced.

Nice to have options!

Drive them while you can!

backroadsjeff

DanNagy
07-03-2008, 12:36 PM
In June I drove from Pennsylvania to Missouri and back in two days to pick up a hard top. Unfortunately, the car didn't make it home due to an electrical fire. That is the third trip I have tried to make to Missouri and Kansas that has failed. It just takes time and patience to sort these cars out, but the enjoyment far exceeds the pain. I will try another trip to Kansas in August.

TexasKnucklehead
07-03-2008, 04:08 PM
Dale,

After 3 years, and over 6,000 miles on my 1974 TR6 without a single failure, I took a weekend drive to visit my mother for mothers day. I left my driveway Thursday morning, drove 2 days to Pennsylvania, spend 2 days and drove back to Houston Texas. Round trip was well over 3,000 miles.

I have had a few issues since, but in 7 years, I have only been towed home once (for a bad rotor / now one of the few spares I carry). When I look at the cost comparison to my 2002 Dodge Truck, the miles/$ is no comparison to the fun/$, but the TR6 wins either.

These cars were built to be driven.

Jerry

PATR8
07-03-2008, 04:43 PM
I regularly put at least 5000 miles a summer on my 8 Wedge. I put at least 120 miles on my 8 two week ends ago driving to Indiana, PA and back taking the more adventurous route. I did have to replace my wheel bearings and have a motor mount to repair tomorrow. My Hummer "rests" for most of the summer, even if it is raining (not storming) I take my 8 to work. I am convinced the more I drive it the better it runs

BobbyD
07-03-2008, 07:52 PM
Dale.....in 10 years of driving, my TR6 has only broken down once and that was a few weeks ago when the starter died. And I got the car started by doing the old fashioned get it rolling and dump the clutch trick. I wouldn't hesitate to drive it any distance.

As Randall noted, Herman &amp; Helena are driving their 250 from California to Delaware to visit friends and then on to VTR in Michigan for the national convention and THEN the northern route to Washington (I think he told me) for a regional meet before heading back home. WHEW!

gsalt57tr3
07-03-2008, 10:22 PM
Seldom do you see a British sports car in Louisiana. (it may be the acid rain)

I drive my TR3 every weekend and 2 - 3 times a week. Some MG everynow and then. Since gas has been going up there have been alot of small cars that looked like the got them out of the woods.

Don

There are alot more older, 4 cylinder cars on the road these days. Better mileage, no smog requirements, and nicer weather.

Drove to the coast last weekend, about 600 miles after all is said and done. I was pleasantly surprised with the speeds that everyone was maintaining, mostly around 60 to 65. Seemed like the truckers were setting the pace.

What kind of mileage are people getting with their LBCs?

I'm getting around 28 with my '57 TR3 with the Toyota 5 speed.

glemon
07-03-2008, 11:32 PM
Best thing to do for reliability is drive your car a lot (or I guess not at all, but that is no fun) make some five block trips so if you break down you aren't far from home, then 50 miles, then 50, after a couple fifties without a problem you are ready for 500.

As you go through the process things will break, and you will fix them, if you are like me sometimes more than once, sometimes a lot more than once. But eventually you end up with a pretty reliable car.

These days of cel. phones and overnight shipping have taken some of th sport out of the long distance trip. The other thing is if you break down the brit car community wherever you are will generally pop out of the woodwork, whether you know them or not, and get you back on the road if you need parts or tools at your disposal to do the fix.

I have had the good fortune of going to the vintage races at Road America a number of times, which for me is over a 1200 mile round trip. Have taken or been take in a TR4A, AH 100, TR3, TR7. Always made it there and back, closesest to not was one year when the TR3 had both wheel bearing go, see above about brit car community coming out of the woodwork as to how the car got back on the road.

07-03-2008, 11:40 PM
drive it to the radius of your free towing until you are comfortable with it.
or if going farther have a list of lbc shops that it can be towed to en route.

works for me...

TR3driver
07-04-2008, 08:48 AM
Bah! You guys are pikers. I bought a Stag, the most notoriously unreliable Triumph ever, sight-unseen and drove it home from almost 2000 miles away!

Had lots of adventures along the way; including some 3 hours in a Wally-Mart parking lot alternately buying tools and applying them to the car, but we made it home without benefit of a flatbed.

Most memorable was my co-pilot waking me up just outside of Phoenix, saying "Something's wrong, I can't get up to speed." When I climbed out to check, I could see the glow from the front brake rotors shining on the pavement!

Tinster
07-04-2008, 08:55 AM
have a list of lbc shops that it can be towed to en route.

works for me...



<span style="color: #990000">Huuummm? I never thought of THAT concept.
The closest LBC shop to me is 1200 miles away in Florida.
A bit a tow, that.

d </span> :crazyeyes:

angelfj1
07-04-2008, 09:55 AM
guess they don't like those durn forin cars down there :devilgrin: