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When did you buy your first LBC, and what was it?

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For me it was a 1959 Bugeye, purchased in 1968. I drove it while in college, and traded it in when I was in the Marines a few years later. I traded it in on a 1969 Mach I. Wish I had both of them backšŸ˜œ
 

nomad

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1948 MG TC purchased in 1968. I've owned at least one British car ever since but, sadly, couldn't turn down a high offer for the TC immediate after the movie "Love Story" came out. Not really a highway cruiser now days anyway.

Kurt.
 

Rut

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67 TR4a I traded my 63 VW convertible for in 69...still my favorite LBC and the reason I have 2 in the barn awaiting restoration.
Rut
 

HealeyRick

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I was a junior in high school when I bought my cousin's bugeye in 1967 for $350. It really was just a little bit better than a POS, with rusty rockers, holes in the floor, a bad second gear synchro and no convertible top. It did have a non-factory hardtop that went on sometime in October and stayed on until spring, except for the New Years Day ride. It was terrible in a Massachusetts winter. It just didn't want to start when it got cold, the heater wouldn't defrost the windscreen and the sidescreens would freeze shut when I was in class. Yet it had tons of cool. I "fixed it up" with some galvanized steel rockers pop-riveted on, a repaint in '68 Corvette Yellow, some new floor coverings and stretch-on seat cover and a spray-on spatter cover vinyl roof on the hardtop. Sounds hideous, but it did't look that terrible. I hated the inconveniences of that car, but there was so much more I loved: driving around the roads on Cape Cod, smelling the different smells through the open top; having a British sports car during the days when the British Invasion, Carnaby St., the Beatles and other British groups were the height of cool; and learning my Alpine Rally techniques on roads between the cranberry bogs of southeastern Mass. Finally sold it to a couple of guys that had just returned from a round trip on the AlCan highway on a Norton Commando and BSA Lightning. They must have thought they ware buying a Rolls Royce. When I finally got a real job, I bought another bugeye in 1977 that I have toay. Totally redone to mimic the '59 Sebring Sprites. Makes me feel like 16 years old every time I drive it.
 

Bob Claffie

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Bought a new AH 3000 in May of 1959. Drove / abused it for 16ooo miles and traded it in for a new 1960 Corvette and have owned Corvette's ever since (along with misc other LBC's over the years).
 

Gerard

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That's funny Rick... my first Bugeye shown in my earlier post was Nevada Beige originally, but I had it repainted Safari Yellow, which was the new Corvette color is '68. My buddy had a brand new '68 L89 Stingray in that color and I loved it at the time. Here's and old B?W of out cars parked together. Once, while driving some nice roads one autumn day, we got stopped by a cop who accused us of racing. When my friend heard that, he fell down on the ground laughing. My 948 against his 427... it was just too much for him to keep a straight face. We were given our licenses back and the cop left, I'm quite certain, feeling mortified.

Corvette and Bugeye.jpeg

I was a junior in high school when I bought my cousin's bugeye in 1967 for $350. It really was just a little bit better than a POS, with rusty rockers, holes in the floor, a bad second gear synchro and no convertible top. It did have a non-factory hardtop that went on sometime in October and stayed on until spring, except for the New Years Day ride. It was terrible in a Massachusetts winter. It just didn't want to start when it got cold, the heater wouldn't defrost the windscreen and the sidescreens would freeze shut when I was in class. Yet it had tons of cool. I "fixed it up" with some galvanized steel rockers pop-riveted on, a repaint in '68 Corvette Yellow, some new floor coverings and stretch-on seat cover and a spray-on spatter cover vinyl roof on the hardtop. Sounds hideous, but it did't look that terrible. I hated the inconveniences of that car, but there was so much more I loved: driving around the roads on Cape Cod, smelling the different smells through the open top; having a British sports car during the days when the British Invasion, Carnaby St., the Beatles and other British groups were the height of cool; and learning my Alpine Rally techniques on roads between the cranberry bogs of southeastern Mass. Finally sold it to a couple of guys that had just returned from a round trip on the AlCan highway on a Norton Commando and BSA Lightning. They must have thought they ware buying a Rolls Royce. When I finally got a real job, I bought another bugeye in 1977 that I have toay. Totally redone to mimic the '59 Sebring Sprites. Makes me feel like 16 years old every time I drive it.
 

Nelson

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I have only owned one LBC. For that matter I still do. It was January 8 in 1962 that I drove Little Mo away from Donald Healey's dealership in England. I haven't driven it since Thursday this past week. I was 24 years old when i bought it but I'm not going to say how old I am now but I still plan to put more miles on Little Mo.
 

SaxMan

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Well, it's only been less than three years, and Larry, you should know the story of the car. :encouragement:

For those who don't remember, I kept seeing the Sprite with the "For Sale" sign parked along the main drag in New Market, MD, when I went to visit my parents. This went on for at least a month. Finally, I said "If that car is still there, I'm going to stop and take a look at it". It was, and, as they say, the rest is history. If I knew owning an LBC would be this fun, I should have bought one 20 years ago.

I had Baby Blue out today. It was a little chilly, but it was the first long run the car had since it's winter overhaul. Very happy with the car's performance. The string alignment worked very well, and the motor was running baby butt smooth. First time I stopped at a light, I thought the car had stalled out as I'm always used to some shaking at idle.
 

glemon

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I post here from time to time even though I don't have a Sprite, but I have had many years of LBC ownership so I still weigh in. But this time I can really be part of the Spridget gang. My first car was bought in 1978, it was a 1966 Sprite, 1098, repainted from pale primrose to an olive drab green. It was about halfway between a pristine, well preserved example and a piece of junk. It ran decently, wasn't too rusty but had a bubble or two in the usual spots, didn't like to start when it was really cold, and had some dents and dings. But it was great fun. Loved tearing around in it, loved the musty smell of the aged interior mixing with the smell of autumn leaves on a warm fall day.

Second car was a 67 Sprite, when I bought it it had a shaved head and what they called a 3/4 race cam and front and rear sway bars. Above 3500 RPM it really moved, and it did corner as if "on rails". Unfortunately I only took it for a 5 minute test drive and all seemed fine. After purchase and a long enough drive to heat the oil up pressure dropped to just off the peg at idle and 20-25 psi when revving the **** out of it. Although I wasn't happy to discover the motor was on its last legs (it smoked pretty good when warmed up too) I do have great memories of the what the **** driving I did for the month or two after that. Beating a guy in a new TR7 at the stoplight grand prix, as well as a few 70s smog strangled V8 cars. Good times. Despite all my efforts I never did blow it up, a stock 1275 was fitted a couple months later. (EDIT: I know this is a G rated forum but really, starred out for H E double toothpicks!)
 
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Gerard

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Now that's a poetic description I can relate to...

I don't think you can really be in love with these cars without an appreciation of this sentiment... :cheers:

... Loved tearing around in it, loved the musty smell of the aged interior mixing with the smell of autumn leaves on a warm fall day.
 

AngliaGT

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Back in '75,or '76,I bought a '59 Austin Healey 1oo 6 for $1000,
that was in great shape.First car my Wife & I ever went out in.
Sold it about a year later for $2,100.I made $800 on it!
 

mxp01

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I purchased a Sprite MK II in November 2002 as my first project car. It was in pretty bad shape but a goo car to start on. About six months later it got hit while parked in the street. I paid about 1700 for it plus $600 for delivery. The insurance company gave me $7500 that allowed me to finance the work on a Sunbeam. .

After the MKII I discovered the BE and there's been no looking back.

MXP
 

JPSmit

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Technically the first LBC I ever bought was the Vauxhall - 2011? The Midget followed me home ("He got it for free and he got what he paid for!" :smile: ) That technicality aside, I got Ms Triss in 2004 and got her on the road in 2009. While one of the first cars I ever properly fell in love with was an Iris Blue Bugeye when I was 14 - it was $350 and still too expensive, I also have to admit that while I love my LBC it was more that a British Car found me than that I was looking for a (specifically) British car. Actually I wasn't looking for a car - but a European or even an American car could have just as easily been in my driveway (though most of you know my tastes run to small and oddball!). That said, in retrospect, I am glad my first restoration was British, partly because of simplicity, partly because of part availability and especially because of the British Car Community (particularly BCF) - it continues to be my impression that this community is friendly, more helpful and much more DIY inclined than some others.
 

nomad

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Gerard and glemon make a good point. The olfactory senses are a big part of the experience. I love twisty mountain roads not just for the roads but for the smell of the pines!

Kurt.
 

LarryK

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I bought a coworkers 64 Spit MK IV for $250, did not run. Brought it home, changed all the fluids, tuned and covered the bright orange paint with gray primer. Had a hardtop, but drove top down for 8 months. Saved enough money to buy a Mustang Mach 1, and sold the Spit for $300.
 

Bayless

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My first LBC was the 1948 Prefect I am currently restoring. It was given to me in 1962 with the worn plumb out motor separate a few weeks later. We used it as the second car for a few years and put about 35000 miles on it even though it sounded like the pistons were swapping holes every few revs. Story here https://enfoprefect.org/cars/My_Prefect.html.
 

hcallaway

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Picture is it coming out of storage. Should get it back on the road late this year if I have time.

1964 MGB built in 1963. Restored it for the wifes 40th birthday. This was in 2000 or 1999 when I bought it.
This is it in it's new home.

Wife drove it maybe 5-10 times over the first 5 years. I decided to put it away for when the kids are gone and the Suburban or Van were not needed to transport kids. Now Grandkids are here but the time is approaching where she wants it to be used again.
She can finally use it as I had intended.
New project in 2015. 1960 Bugeye Miss Eva.

Not much to work with but we are making progress. Slow progress.
 

markberry

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I was a junior in high school when I bought my cousin's bugeye in 1967 for $350. It really was just a little bit better than a POS, with rusty rockers, holes in the floor, a bad second gear synchro and no convertible top. It did have a non-factory hardtop that went on sometime in October and stayed on until spring, except for the New Years Day ride. It was terrible in a Massachusetts winter. It just didn't want to start when it got cold, the heater wouldn't defrost the windscreen and the sidescreens would freeze shut when I was in class. Yet it had tons of cool. I "fixed it up" with some galvanized steel rockers pop-riveted on, a repaint in '68 Corvette Yellow, some new floor coverings and stretch-on seat cover and a spray-on spatter cover vinyl roof on the hardtop. Sounds hideous, but it did't look that terrible. I hated the inconveniences of that car, but there was so much more I loved: driving around the roads on Cape Cod, smelling the different smells through the open top; having a British sports car during the days when the British Invasion, Carnaby St., the Beatles and other British groups were the height of cool; and learning my Alpine Rally techniques on roads between the cranberry bogs of southeastern Mass. Finally sold it to a couple of guys that had just returned from a round trip on the AlCan highway on a Norton Commando and BSA Lightning. They must have thought they ware buying a Rolls Royce. When I finally got a real job, I bought another bugeye in 1977 that I have toay. Totally redone to mimic the '59 Sebring Sprites. Makes me feel like 16 years old every time I drive it.

Hmmm. my Bugeye was yellow with pop riveted rockers on it when I bought it.
 
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