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Harrison's Garage


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5 hours ago, rob88h said:

(Ford Focus) – 2008 “Vision Blue" Estate. Not sure if this has ripened into a photo worthy status yet. Maybe once it’s over 150,000 miles.

Everything is welcome. Even my 2010 193k Audi A4 is ... maybe. 

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I like that your mini doesn't have arch extenders. I've been nosing on ones for sale and unfortunately most have them. Once I find one that isn't terminally rotten and overpriced or pristine but super expensive, I'll get one. Yours is pretty much the exact condition I'm looking for. 

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Thanks everyone for the kind words! I'm quite happy with the fleet at the moment - probably the best it's been, certainly the most diverse. It's taken 42 cars to get to this point, with some corkers I just know you're going to love (some of those that show as on the road or on SORN still on the DVLA site may probably in your hands, haha, mabye even the R5 - B683 XUD).

The Mini that's getting a lot of love is a result of unfinished business I have with Minis. My second car was an '85 Mayfair that I had renovated to a pretty nice state. It was my everyday driver for about a year while I was 18, until one day it went missing... It was found burnt-out just down the A1 at Clumber Partk which was less than ideal. To add insult to injury the Park tried to claim crazy money off my insurers for damages to one of their Lime Tree Avenue trees that the car had been torched under. My insurance company valued the car at £1000, so minus my excess I only got £900. I listed the car on eBay (in it's pre-wrecked form) with a massive reserve so it couldn't sell, to get an idea of "market value". Bidding got to £3000, so I made an appeal to the real thieves Insurers with this information but they would not make an exception. My time with a Mini was cut brutally short, so I vowed that I'd have another one day, given that I couldn't afford another back then.

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I have always preferred the more classic 10" wheel earlier Minis in fairly low spec - having a tachometer and an ashtray in the Mayfair was far too decadent. I came across A654 WOV whilst trying to find any A-reg car to complete my challenge of having owned a car from every registration prefix (except Q, they don't do it for me). The fact that it was an unmolested mk3? Mini made me look at it more than I should have done. It was cheap but very close to terminally rotten with a no doubt crooked ticket. I got it into my head that this one ticked a lot of boxes and if I didn't go for it I'd probably would never get another Mini on account of them costing too much. So in May 2017 I picked up my new Mini and have proceeded to spend the thousands I should have spent on a buying a good one on putting in new floors, sub frames and sills. This Mini was using floor mats (five per side!) as a structural element to disguise the flex in the holed floor when resting your heels in the pedals area. It is really satisfying to know I've saved it for a while though. The Mini is probably a long term keeper for me given the story behind why it's here. It's essentially the reincarnation of my first car (that wasn't my first car).

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2 hours ago, rob88h said:

...trying to find any A-reg car to complete my challenge of having owned a car from every registration prefix...

I love this. It’s the sort of pointless but very satisfying challenge I think about but don’t have the stamina to see fully through. Much respect for actually doing it.

(I’m missing D and E and I lose interest after L.)

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That is a fine collection. I’m especially partial to the 300td in Marrakesh taxi beige and the 440, because they seem to go under the radar even on here

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  • 1 month later...

...Lockdown Time = Cut and Polish Time

Due to the sheer acreage of the Beige Benz, my entire home supply of T-cut was consumed within 2 days. Rather than finishing bottles it turns out I’d been doing about four fifths of a bottle, losing it, and then buying a new one. Probably a similar approach to most people, so the forced stay at home time was a great opportunity to finish off the dregs of about 5 bottles. It also turns out that Amazon deliver T-Cut, albeit with lots of packaging and some interesting stickers on the box that made it arrive really quickly, presumably because it looked like the sort of thing people didn’t want to handle for too long. Who knew?!

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The improvement in the look and feel of the car is profound. It’s certainly seems to be a “why didn’t I do this sooner job” when I look at the car now. But then again I do get a short flashbacks to the beige coloured raw T-cut, mixed with the beige dead paint infused beige rag leaving a furry feeling in between my beige fingers and under my beige fingernails. It’s also all I can smell when I look at the car now in some sort of post traumatic stress psychology kind of way. Below are a before and after photo that do it no justice at all other than looking washed (with a bonus of the missing fleet member WF08 JMV accidentally making it into the background - it got a once over with the wax too). I'd like to clean up the inside too, but what with the CROVID-19, respirators and hazmat suits are in short supply. Also, this thing is only road legal thanks to the free 6 month Ticket extension scheme which is a good result for this car. Decrepit is a good word to describe how it is at the moment. Mainly galloping rot - more than a deep cut and polish is going to sort out. 

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Thanks everyone.

@wesacosa, I've been reading AS for a while now and decided that it was about time I started to contribute! I was supposed to start back when my fleet was up to eight or nine strong, but I found I was spending too much time changing oil, shuffling things around on the drive and applying for road tax (and also doing whatever grovelling I could to earn brownie points to keep me married). I'm surprised you'd not seen the Mini, I've had that for three years now which is pretty unheard of for me. It's been at work a few time too - although my favourite thing to do is to park really deep in a bay so it looks like there is a space available until you get close and ready to pull in, than bam! a shite Mini! So that's probably why you've not seen it... Somewhere I have a great picture of it parked next to my XJ8 LWB W536 XDU that I'll have to find. 

@J-T, The S123 is a legend in its own (rapidly expiring) lifetime. I found it in a hedge of all places back in 2017 and accidentally paid only £500 for it. I had gone to look at it and it was super rusty underneath with mega mega mileage. I decided not to buy it within about 30 seconds, but the way I chose to tell the seller for some reason was that I'd only pay £500 for it because of the condition. To my horror he said ok... I had it repaired back to a just about road worthy state and it's been biblically failing MOT's ever since without once letting me down or leaving me stranded, including multiple trips out to Wales and a big one down to Bourg St. Maurice in the French Alps. 

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@rob88hHa ha 

That was abit like me with my 240. I went to see it and decided I shouldn't really but it. It was a one owner car so I offered a silly amount and the owner accepted. ? I then had to get it transported home and start the repairs. 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Harrison’s History - #1 Ford Fiesta J940 XKY

Up to this point I’ve had something like 40 cars, but I have no photo organisation so I’ve decided to make this thread a car scrap book, pun intended, as well as continuing on with anything new. In theory it’s all digital for me as I only started in 2005, but I still seem to have a myriad of old computers, hard drives and phones to try and find at least one picture of each car from. It all started with this Wedgewood Blue Ford Fiesta Mk3 1.1L Popular Plus which I bought 50:50 with my sister, £125 each.

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Possession being 9/10ths of the law, after a few weeks it became my car and my sister would use my parent’s car. I fitted an inclinometer I got from a scrapyard off a Panda Sisley 4x4, because 17 year old. I did a decent job of it too, it was neatly wired into the instrument panel lights and everything, so it would illuminate when the lights were on. On one drive I lost all the wheel trims and a pair of pants (and probably the tracking) on a particularly aggressive local hump back bridge. I replaced the wheel trims with white one’s from a Mk2 Fiesta or a Mk3 Escort or something of that era and also did some cosmetic rust repairs to the rear arches and around the fuel filler. Someone made a botched attempt at stealing it by bending the door window frame away from the roof to open the door and stuck a screwdriver in the ignition. Luckily for me they got scared off or gave up leaving me in possession of a new screwdriver! I replaced the door with the closest colour match I could get from my local scrapyard and although loose, the ignition barrel just about worked with the key.

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Some point around now I’d bought my second car so started working on the Fez less and less and never changed the drivers lock barrel over when replacing the door. Not having a key for that door, if I wanted to lock the car it became a procedure of climbing across from the passenger side. Not long after, the passenger lock barrel gave up meaning entry/exit when locked was through the boot. Fond memories.

Only being able to afford to run one car it went in a field as a designated backup car once my second car was road legal. Unfortunately, when I needed it again it failed its MOT beyond my means and got scrapped.

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Harrison’s History - #2 Austin Mini C325 LVL

As posted earlier on, my second car was an ’85 Mini Mayfair that was the epitome of rose-tinted glasses. It was perfect in every way and never caused me any stress or trouble. Below are a few photos I’ve found that corroborate that fact.

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Ok, so some of those pictures are jogging memories of financial ruin, ignition problems, long stints at the side of the road, “ignition problems” and finally more financial ruin. I purchased the car from Mini Classics in Blyth, Nottinghamshire from their project car stock and had them do the recommissioning work. I think I bought the car for £400 and spent something like £1500 on the original restoration which seems really good in hindsight considering the good work that was done.

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As mentioned earlier, after about a year it got nicked and burnt out. The insurance pay-out was dismal. That same day I revived the Fiesta from its hibernation and got it into MOT where it was quickly condemned and scrapped. It really was a case of trial-by-fire in terms of becoming an enthusiast losing my entire fleet and it’s equity in an instant. Not to be deterred I went and secured something truly great for my third car!

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Harrison’s History - #3 Nissan Micra R822 SDT

Back in partnership with my sister we got a K11 Micra, saved from being part exchanged when my mum upgraded(?) to a Punto for herself.

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Arrangements were more awkward on this one as my sister mostly took it away with her to University, which I suppose was karma for me hogging the Fiesta. She soon rectified the problem by swiftly writing it off.

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I'm going to have to sit down and try and remember all the plates of my former cars now, I didn't set an aim to own all the prefix letters, and I don't think I've had A or B but it would be interesting to know (and thus fill) the gaps. 

More please. 

I wish I had had the patience to save for a W123. Those are out of sight now. 

 

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  • rob88h changed the title to Harrison's Garage

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