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TR4/4A looking to purchase 1965 TR4A have a few questions

AK_ED

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Hello
New to the forum and hope to be a part of your comunuity

My name is Ed and im looking at purchasing a 65 TR4A, and my background is german cars, i have a couple of classic porsches and looking for a british car.the TR4, its green newer soft top, runs and drives usable interior as stated by the current owner. he tells me he has records from around the late 60s to current. im looking for the knowledge of you guys out there as im not sure where to focus when i go look at this car. i have done restos on old series rovers and know my way around the electrical and the carbs of the britt stuff.

i have seen pics of the car and it looks good in pics but going to look at it this weekend.

questions

1. is there areas of the car to pay attention to that are prone to rust,
2. is there areas on the frame that crack rust etc.
3. door gaps i have read that body mounts worn will make them uneven?
4. is there items known to these cars specific that are troublesome.

thanks guys and hope to be posting here more often with a new car to play with.

cheers ed
 

tdskip

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Hi Ed - welcome!

Body / frame condition is the thing to watch. Mechanical bits and trim are all readily available with a choice of suppliers.

Look at front and rear fender bottoms, especially at the front since if those are iffy there will me rust in the rocker section that cover. Floors are usually at risk, as is the rear deck where the rear fenders met the cockpit area. Battery tray in engine bays typically go. In the engine compartment look at the inner fenders near where the fuses are as well.

Door gap can range from easily adjusted to indicating that the sills / structure is rotten. Gaps should be consistent but body fit on these cars isn't in Mercedes or BMW precision or a tight.

Rear of frames near the rear suspension can be a rust spot, check everything but start there.

A 65 should be a solid axle car.

If you post pictures here, as many as you can, we'll crawl through it visually for you.

These are fun and tough cars - you'll enjoy her.
 

Mickey Richaud

Moderator
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Welcome, Ed! The TR engine is one of the most reliable, and bullet-proof examples the British ever made. As Tom mentioned, rust is your enemy; check all the nooks and crannies. Adding to Tom's list, check around and under the master cylinders; prime area for rust-through.

Good luck!

Mickey
 
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AK_ED

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hey tdskip

thanks for the quick reply and the welcome!

i will study these areas when i look at the car, this is exactly the kinda info i was looking for. the owner mentioned that the door gaps where not square and that the body mounts would help to fix this?

but ill get some pics and post them up.

cheers ed
 

tdskip

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3798j said:
tdskip said:
A 65 should be a solid axle car.
Careful, 4A's were available with IRS right from the start (1965).

Fair point, maybe I should have said it is "likely" it will be a solid axle car. In any case as you determining the axle type you should look at the section of the frame there.
 

tdskip

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Body mounts might help account for that, but don't bet the farm on it. If the car is otherwise solid then the gaps should be adjustable but don't expect them to be really tight.
 
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AK_ED

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tdskip said:
Body mounts might help account for that, but don't bet the farm on it. If the car is otherwise solid then the gaps should be adjustable but don't expect them to be really tight.

sound good ill look it over and see what it looks like in person.

i hope its solid as he says it is because if so ill have a cool old triumph! :thumbsup:

ed
 

sail

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3798j said:
4A's were available with IRS right from the start (1965).
:iagree:

Welcome Ed. Only around 7000 of the some 28000 4A's were solid axel (not a bad thing.) Solid axel is a little harsher ride, IRS has more parts to replace. 4A IRS shares much suspension with 250 and 6's. What they said to check. The first place I would look for rust on an IRS car is where the rear trailing arms attach to the frame towards the front or the spring on a solid axel.
Post pictures and be prepaired for a critique.
Cheers to you.
 

DanB

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Hi Ed, and welcome.

I have owned my 66 TR4AIRS since 1980, when I bought it for $300. The biggest issue with an IRS model that was not mentioned earlier is the tendency of the pumpkin to break loose from the frame. There are 4 studs that come from frame where the diff is attached and the torque stresses them over time, so if you drive it, listen for a "clunk" from behind you. If you hear it, chances are one of the studs has pulled from the frame and will need to be welded. Check the frame for rust like Richard said. Mine had some stress cracks around the motor mounts and also where the front suspension attaches.
These are great cars, alot of fun to drive and really easy to work on. Parts seem to be more available now than they were back when I first got mine, mostly due to the internet.
Have fun and good luck!

Dan B.
South Charleston, WV
 

TR4nut

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Welcome Ed-

Everything has been covered here very well, other minor add is check the frame mounts in the front suspension too. In the 4A, the original lower pivot mounts used 1 stud to mount to the frame, this was found to be a weak point and later TR6's went to 2 studs. Might check for frame issues there, or maybe even a conversion to 2 stud mounts which has been a recommended fix.

My guess is it is the same green 4A I saw on Craigslist about a year or two ago - can't be that many in Anchorage. If so, it did look very nice I think. Hope you get it, I'm heading up there in May on business and would love to see it on the road!

Randy
 

Geo Hahn

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AK_ED said:
...looking for a british car.the TR4, its green newer soft top, runs and drives...

Ed --

The main thing to keep in mind when shopping for a TR4 in Anchorage is that you probably don't want this one:

TR4-Alaska.JPG


Geez, I do wonder what became of that car.

Since rust is an issue anywhere (even in the deserts of Arizona) you've been given good advice to look very hard at that. Floorboards can be replaced but a look at them can be a good indicator of what is going on where it is harder to check.

Both my cars are solid axle examples so I cannot comment specifically on IRS but I believe there are some particular areas in the rear body pressing that are more vulnerable to rust on IRS cars.

Several books and buyers guides are available for these cars, in particular the one by Roger Williams is useful I think.

<span style="font-style: italic">I see no buyers guide on the VTR site for TR4s, but they do have one for TR250s which share the same set-up (other than engine) with the TR4A IRS:</span>

TR250 Buyers Guide
 
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AK_ED

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TR4nut said:
Welcome Ed-

Everything has been covered here very well, other minor add is check the frame mounts in the front suspension too. In the 4A, the original lower pivot mounts used 1 stud to mount to the frame, this was found to be a weak point and later TR6's went to 2 studs. Might check for frame issues there, or maybe even a conversion to 2 stud mounts which has been a recommended fix.

My guess is it is the same green 4A I saw on Craigslist about a year or two ago - can't be that many in Anchorage. If so, it did look very nice I think. Hope you get it, I'm heading up there in May on business and would love to see it on the road!

Randy
Randy
it might be the same one but not 100% sure on that. it is available due to the fact im selling him a old single cab vw pickup. i just got off the phone with him and says that it is a rust free california car and car will be available for me to look over on saturday. i asked him about the troubled areas and he said he bought a book on how to buy a triumph, and went down the list and he was very aware of all the areas you guys have mentioned, he says the worst thing about the car is it leaks oil from the rear main seal. but i will post more info when i get it.

ed
 
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AK_ED

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Geo Hahn said:
AK_ED said:
...looking for a british car.the TR4, its green newer soft top, runs and drives...

Ed --

The main thing to keep in mind when shopping for a TR4 in Anchorage is that you probably don't want this one:

TR4-Alaska.JPG


Geez, I do wonder what became of that car.

Since rust is an issue anywhere (even in the deserts of Arizona) you've been given good advice to look very hard at that. Floorboards can be replaced but a look at them can be a good indicator of what is going on where it is harder to check.

Both my cars are solid axle examples so I cannot comment specifically on IRS but I believe there are some particular areas in the rear body pressing that are more vulnerable to rust on IRS cars.

Several books and buyers guides are available for these cars, in particular the one by Roger Williams is useful I think.

<span style="font-style: italic">I see no buyers guide on the VTR site for TR4s, but they do have one for TR250s which share the same set-up (other than engine) with the TR4A IRS:</span>

TR250 Buyers Guide

i would love to have this car even if crushed as man if it could only talk.

ed
 

TR4nut

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AK_ED said:
he says the worst thing about the car is it leaks oil from the rear main seal.

Sounds like you found a very authentic Triumph then - that's not a defect, that's a quaint feature.
 
T

TRDejaVu

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Welcome. All of the above, plus the rear fender top edge joints, especially where they are next to the center saddle panel (the one with the gas gap in the middle). If paint is bubbling in that gap then the saddle may need some work due to hidden rust.

I have a solid axle car and it is a blast to drive - power nothing; the most high tech part is my garage door opener. Power brakes are for weenies :smirk:
 

DanB

Jedi Warrior
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Ed,

It is not leaking. It's marking its territory.

But seriously, the rear main seal leaking is almost always caused by too much pressure in the crankcase, and this has been addressed on this very forum recently under a thread with PVC in it. Many folks go back to the earlier crankcase venting and road draft tube, but I put a catch can in mine that is doing the job pretty well so far.

Dan B
South Charleston, WV
66 TR4AIRS EFI
80 TR7 DHC
 
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AK_ED

Senior Member
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DanB said:
Ed,

It is not leaking. It's marking its territory.

But seriously, the rear main seal leaking is almost always caused by too much pressure in the crankcase, and this has been addressed on this very forum recently under a thread with PVC in it. Many folks go back to the earlier crankcase venting and road draft tube, but I put a catch can in mine that is doing the job pretty well so far.

Dan B
South Charleston, WV
66 TR4AIRS EFI
80 TR7 DHC

Dan

i read that thread and it makes sense ill inspect this when i get the car. i have talked with the owner again and mentioned that the seal was more of a wiper type seal and not the typical rubber. he mentioned it resembles an old vw seal? anyways im getting excited about looking at her and if the condition the owner says bringing it home.

cheers ed
 
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