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About RayMK

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    Rank: Citroen Ami

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    Retired in 2008, now 70 years old (2019). Interests? Well, anything that's interesting. Currently own a 1961 Reliant Regal MKVI Saloon (since 1992) Previously mentioned Stellar and Tipo are now with new owners but my son and I may buy the '94 Tipo 1.4ie back in the new year. The most exotic car I've owned was a Citroen CX GTi Turbo 2, the most unreliable was a Ginetta G26 and the most boring was an Escort MK2 Automatic. A new Mitsubishi Mirage Juro CVT has been acquired after the failure of my Peugeot 205's autobox in November 2017. 14/01/19 update: I bought the Tipo back from my son's friend a few days ago. It will need MOT rectification work (brakes, track rod ends, front spring and a CV boot clip, no bodywork) and should be road legal on 16th Jan 2019 (further update: Now in regular use).


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  1. Yep. Reliant owners refer to it as the 'A frame.' It is in fact a leading arm, so in theory it has anti dive properties when braking. My 1961 MKVI Regal saloon has pretty much the same configuration but for a 13 inch wheel. The parts are not interchangeable with later Robins or Rialtos. Driving Robins or Rialtos is, as others have said, great fun. The lightweight construction, chirpy engine, short throw gear change and relatively stiff suspension gives a sporty feel even at modest speeds. Lifting the left rear wheel on left handers when there's just the driver on board is easily done if you forget that it's a three wheeler and brake whilst in the corner. Once you've got the feel of them, it is possible to drive rapidly with little risk of rolling. They feel even more stable with a good tool kit strategically placed at the nearside in the boot. Reliants burn well. Make sure that the fuel system is leak tight and all rubber pipework is of the correct spec for modern petrol. The valve seats are fine with unleaded. I agree with Plasticvandan regarding the heater. I found that my Rialto kept its cool much better after fitting it with an expansion bottle and having a simple blanking cap on the rad and a pressure cap on the bottle. This enabled the radiator to run full at all times. Without an expansion bottle, Robins and Rialtos tend to push coolant out of the overflow, leaving the apparent coolant level just barely over the top of the fins. Engine access is poor by most standards unless you are a double jointed masochist.
  2. Changed the Tipo's oil, oil filter, air filter and plugs yesterday and gave it a cursory checkover (and under) prior to today's MOT. It all looked passable and drives fine. I was therefore surprised that it passed, albeit with some advisories and the tester saying he did not like the corrosion behind both bumpers. It was nevertheless deemed non-structural and safe for 12 months. My son accidentally booked the MOT for today, not realising that it was a day too early to get 13 months. Expiry of the previous MOT was 23rd Jan 2020. As a result, we have lost a month's MOT cover. Oh well. Can't win them all. A couple of weeks ago my daughter's/son in law's 1.4 Focus MK1 with 177K on the clock also passed without much comment despite my efforts to bodge the front exhaust hanger using an old upholstery tension spring.
  3. RayMK

    Shite Postcards

    Yes, looking harder at the postcard, the front wing is cut away on the leading edge like a TD, whereas the type Y leading edge was at bumper level. Good call 😎.
  4. RayMK

    Shite Postcards

    On the 1970s shot of Marlborough, it looks like a yellow VW K70 on the left behind the army truck. K70s were always a rare sight in the UK.
  5. RayMK

    Shite Postcards

    On the last postcard above, I think you are correct. I would say it's an MG Y type saloon.
  6. RayMK

    Shite Postcards

    It's a 1960's era Skoda Octavia. Nice postcards!
  7. When my Triumph Herald's brazed chassis outriggers pulled off during emergency braking (the rear radius rods are attached to them), a repair was beyond my means. A friend's dad had a little used Jawa 350 combo up in Chester and it was offered to me for a reasonable price. I lived in Aylesbury back then. Although I had had many thousands of miles experience on two and four wheels, collecting the Jawa outfit on a cold, foggy autumn day quickly brought me out in a cold sweat. I had expected asymmetry in the handling but not the murderous tendency to aim for HGVs coming in the other direction if I had to slow down, Similarly, its ditch seeking characteristics when power* was applied were alarming. This was with 16bhp. I stopped with friends near Stafford to see if my brain would absorb the weirdness overnight. It must have worked because the next day's trip home to Aylesbury was almost enjoyable. A year later, my brother needed a lift to a motorcycle repair shop somewhere west of Banbury. He climbed in the chair and nursed a big lump of BSA 650 A10 engine in the footwell. There was a left hand downhill hairpin bend on the route to the shop. Despite slowing down prior to the bend, I needed to shed more speed when I saw how sharp it was. The loaded unbraked sidecar gave the outfit chronic understeer and I used the whole width of the road to get round. Fortunately, there was nothing coming the other way. I used the outfit for about 18 months for commuting 26 miles each way, During this time the bike needed at least 20 new spokes in the back wheel. They snapped frequently until a chap at work made some stronger ones - I still have a few spares in the garage. The Jawa outfit was not particularly reliable or fast. It struggled to exceed 50mph. It was nevertheless an enjoyably eccentric way of getting around.
  8. I have not bought any diecasts since 2017 and no new ones since decades ago but the new Matchbox range is tempting me because I prefer realism i.e recognisable vehicles with normal sized wheels. I particularly like their versions of American full size sedans. Ages ago, Toys R Us had a similar range of attractive yanks. I'll have to dig out the ones I bought - I don't think they were Matchbox.
  9. Yes, it's a Moskvitch. They were moderately popular for a while. My dad looked at a new one in a showroom and walked out after seeing the front tyre rubbing on the brake pipe. He kept his Vauxhall Victor FB estate.
  10. Thank you. The Reliant is 58 years old and probably more stableπŸ˜€.
  11. Today I was presented with this excellent edible Reliant by my son, made by one of his colleagues from work. It made reaching 70 with a Reliant more bearable (i.e. possible 😁).
  12. Slightly similar story here. 1967 (I is old), passed my test first time in Germany (BFG test) on a 50cc Peugeot moped. Annoyingly, this was not valid when we returned to the UK in 1969. Graduated to a CZ175 in 1971 and passed the bloody test again first time. Got married and bought a knackered Reliant 3-25 saloon in 1973 and self-taught myself to drive. It caught fire on the way to work in 1975 and I ordered a brand new 2CV6 with the aid of the insurance and man maths. Delivery was six weeks. Snag: I had not passed my car test. Had 5 lessons to unlearn any* bad habits in a driving school Triumph Toledo. Passed test 1st time in the Toledo (cramped driver's footwell is my only memory of the car) and picked up the 2CV6 a week later. The Toledo did not prepare me for the weird gear change and, not being a sailor, the lean angles of the 2CV6 were disconcerting for a few miles.
  13. I have often wondered about directional alloys but have never walked round to view the other side. I agree that it's annoying and would annoy me if I owned a car so equipped.
  14. Certain styles of alloy wheel with mismatched spokes versus wheel bolts e.g.
  15. Yep. That's why I find it attractive. No stupid pretence trying to make a car have a face. Most current designers give their blobs a shouty, aggressive front believing it to be a face. To me, such nonsense merely endows the car with pointless wrinkles and kinks which, together with oversized wheels and low profile tyres, replicates what manufacturers of cheap toys were doing in the 1980s and later. Elegance, with one or two exceptions, has died a death. Alfa is probably the only mainstream brand that can still do it and Peugeot has at last locked its blob designers in the broom cupboard, resulting in some half decent looking cars going in to production. Does it matter if a car looks good? Yes. I could not buy a Nissan Juke because it takes eye watering goppyness to an extreme πŸ˜πŸ˜….
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