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26th time lucky: New BORING MODERN CAR

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Superb.

I think I need to use your man in Worthing for the 11.  Better join the queue by the sounds of it....

I reckon I've got driveshaft issues too.  Just hope I don't complete fuck it up by driving it down there.

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Picked up the latest addition to my fleet today. Frankly, compared to the Palladium, it's boring, common and much too new. It's got four seats, full weather equipment and TWO camshafts... whatever will they think of next? It's a three owner from new car, so easily the 'newest' I've owned. And it's got fancy (original) leather 'n wood inside, so it's a bit too posh for me, really. These things will never catch on.

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Done about 300 miles in the Riley in six days, which I'm sure is more than its done in the last 12 months (well definitely, the previous owner died last September). It's quite good, just a nice unmessed with old thing that pootles along at a steady 45-50mph in comfort and civility. These really were an absolute revelation when they were launched, it basically does what most mid-20s two-litre cars did but on 1100cc and with lovely light controls, a virtually foolproof gearbox and really great styling. I've done a couple of commutes in it and it's amazing how rarely you feel like you're holding people up in a car from 1929.

Took it 'on location' for a photo shoot today, this silly snap shows a little of how nice the interior is

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Have you made any videos Scott? I find most of your cars utterly fascinating but so far detached from my own motoring experience that I can scarcely imagine driving such a thing, and would struggle to have any relevant comments etc. 

 

Mind this week I've had numerous people at work who are clearly in the same position when I rock up in a 26 year old 205 and a basket of eggs.

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That is a lovely Riley Mr B, many moons ago in 1961 my first job was at the local garage and I very often serviced a similar car to this, ,a Kestrel model. About 2 years later a mate of mine bought the very same car that I had been servicing! We had loads of fun in that car,they were daily drivers then, OJ 1010 was the reg if I remember correctly.

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Thought I'd take the 404 hone tonight for a final blast before it goes up for sale tomorrow. First the speedo stopped working (130km/h obviously a bit too much for it) and then it lost all its electricity so its now abandoned outside my local sainsburys waiting for somebody to come and help me jump start it. Ungrateful bastard. Almost as if it doesn't want to be sold, but in fact it's had the opposite effect and I really don't want to keep the fucker anymore. #oldcarsffs

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Yep, it's still got pushrod-operated valves but the cams are mounted very high so the pushrods are unusually short. Supposedly it gives most of the advantages of overhead cams (ie, higher safe engine revolutions) but without the complexity. It works really well and the basic engine architecture lasted for decades. There was a six cylinder version in the early 1930s and I believe a development of that lasted all the way until the Nuffield takeover. They sound great and perform really well - for example, the engine in the Palladium is really a late Edwardian design - single cam, side valves, very understressed and slow revving with lots of torque - and despite the Palladium having an extra 400cc and weighing virtually nothing, the Riley is not only quite a bit quicker but has a much more even power delivery throughout the rev range and is much more tractable, despite having less torque and pulling around significantly more weight. It's on par with most 1100cc engines from two decades later, really. Impressive bit of kit, and you can see why they sold so well.

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Do you know what the compression ratio is like on the Riley engine?  I've only had one OHV pre-war car - the Vauxhall 10 - and that squandered most of the advantages of an OHV head (at least in terms of performance) by running a hopelessly low compression ratio.

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