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Boris the '59 Minor.

Joey spud

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7 hours ago, Joey spud said:

Then it went and snowed which was mildly annoying.


Boris came with a pair of pattern part A posts that were stamped ''Henric" who I think we're a Minor parts supplier from back in the 80's alas like the drivers side one previously this passenger side one was way out on its hinge mounting holes alignment to fit as a complete panel but I was able to use it bottom couple of inches to tie the A post to the outter sill.




Now the A post is hopefully still in the right place (won't know until I hang the door again) I could deal with the rot/missing inner arch and inner wing.




At this time of year when I start late and I am loosing the light i have been known to slip in to "bish,bash,bosh,that'll fecking do mode"so while it's not overly pretty the inner arch has been reinstated.


Before adding this panel I painted everything I couldn't later get to with lashings of zinc paint.

I have been using 1.2mm Zintec steel for any homemade repair patches,it's a bit too thick really but is lovely to weld with.

Finally I just needed to plug weld on the A post/hinge closing panel,I had it all trimmed to size and prepped ready to go when I ran out of gas..


So that's where Boris and I are currently at until I can collect another cylinder of argoshield light next year.

Can I just say a big thank you to anyone who has ticked a like box or added a random comment its been a crap year for sure i have lost my Father and Father in Law (not to mention two stinky mutts) it means a lot and helps keep me plodding along.

Cracking job

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15 hours ago, artdjones said:

You are doing well. How do you find shielding gas coverage outdoors?

Thank you. 

I am definitely getting through more gas working outside but only have to turn the gas flow right up when i'm tackling exposed panels on really breezy days.

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Despite having a garage, I actually enjoy working outside. The cold spurs me on to work quicker and there is far less risk of burning the garage down. Not needing to clear up and pack tools away afterwards though is a big bonus. However that packing away forces you to keep your work area tidy!

Garage does shield the noise of grinding though. A good thing for neighbourly relations. 

Nice to see this progressing onwards. Bashing metal into shape is a good way of having some time to yourself and putting life's troubles away for a bit. 

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My free/spare Toyota Supra air filter is a bit too big and was touching the inner wing where wiper motor sat.


I thought about cutting a fair chunk of the wiper motor mount away to give clearance but instead decided to modify my home made filter boss by adding an angled section to its flange and painting it with the wrinkle finish coating.



Now the filter easily clears the wiper mount.

Also while I was playing I added a little ram pipe to help channel the air into the carb and possibly give me at least an extra half a horse power.




Happy days..

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And yesterday as it wasn't raining I finished fitting the closing panel on the rebuilt door pillar and also ground back and coated any bare metal nearby.



I now had no excuses left for not trying the door for size.


Well for a 63 yr old car thats had a lot of it's structure replaced (at least twice) the door fits way better than I dare hope.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Thermal underwear is the future I tell you.



Its 'kin cold but nice and bright today so I pulled the n/s front suspension off for a clean,regrease and poly bushing as required.



And as the torsion bar was off getting titivated the n/s cross member that it mounted to could be replaced too.



Much better.



Now its time to replace the leaf spring front mount/floor panel. To be fair it's not too bad but has been replaced before and is a bit wonky. I cut most of it off but some careful trimming and alignment is required and I wanted to get done and down the pub for the football so called it a day.



OK laugh at me if you want but I have this idea in my head that I want this Minor to look like it has been sitting forgotten in a dry barn since the mid nineties after giving 35 years faithful service and has then been given the bare minimum attention before rejoining the party in 2023.

With this image in mind I acquired an old 1995 tax disc that it may have been wearing when it was locked away,like I say total bollocks but it's how I tick...

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6 minutes ago, Joey spud said:

OK laugh at me if you want but I have this idea in my head that I want this Minor to look like it has been sitting forgotten in a dry barn since the mid nineties after giving 35 years faithful service and has then been given the bare minimum attention before rejoining the party in 2023

Your paint is too far good for that! Mine was probably closer to your description after sitting in a garage since the late 80s/early 90s. If the paint on mine was as good as yours, I might have kept it longer. I don't like too shabby an exterior on a car tbh. 

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I did a leaf spring front mount 50 years ago.

Got it wrong and the car went down the road sideways. Couldn't tell, but someone following told me.

It measured same both sides from the torsion bar x member though.

I didn't* redrill the main leaf  of the rear spring and reassemble all the leafs 1/2" forward to compensate but it was perfect an hour later somehow.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Quick update time.

The old  spring mount/floor panel was loosely cut out revealing previous repairs to the box section above that the rear seat sits on and it's plenty good enough to go again but the box section that runs the length of the car was a bit thin here so I just trimmed it back and welded in some nice thick L section instead as it'll be out of sight.




The new mount/floor was trimmed so there was just a slight overlap and fitted to the spring then the jack was released allowing it to find it's 'happy place'.

My rather lax measurements taken before I started were still good so I got to with welding it in place.




I guess skilled restorers would carefully trim their panels and seamlessly butt weld them together for invisible joins but alas upsidedown in February under a scruffy Minor well that's never going to happen. I do trim them tight as possible and seam weld both sides though.



This boxing panel then goes in to hide and strengthen the mounting area.

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The final floor to step/sill panel can now be fitted.


It's a bit of a faff as it needs to plug welded to the inner step above it and the outter step panel beside it. As designs go a Ford or Vauxhall of the sixties is far simpler.


But it went in ok with abit of help from the Toyota jack and a chunk of wood.


Standing back and looking at where I am now at I can't help thinking that It might of made more sense to replace all four floor pans (£120.00 for a set) rather than join all the new panels to the scruffy original floors.


Still too late now Boris is going to show off his original floors and added panels with pride.



I just need to rejoin the front and rear floor where the cross member was replaced and finish off a few tacked together seams and I can remove the rest of the bed frame leaving me just the rear inner wing/floor rot and fitting the lower quarter panel and that'll be the welding done.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I've now refitted the rebushed and cleaned up front corner.


But I had to weld up some cracks on the chassis leg first.



Looking closer at the legs they have been replaced at some point in the past.

The last bit of floor over the cross member has also been added.



It ain't pretty but it'll do. And the  bracing across the door has now been roughly cut out too.

The final welding repairs to the rear lower quarter and sill/arch are fiddly and time consuming and I've not got the mojo to complete it just now so I've had a look the o/s rear brake instead.

A failed hub seal has leaked EP90 everywhere ruining the newish looking brake shoes and the wheel cylinder was a bit sticky too so ESM the Morris Minor botherers in east Sussex sent me out everything thing I needed for both sides within 48 hours for a reasonable £72.



Cheap enough but 12 months ago when I put these parts in my basket they were priced up at just over £60.


Anyway as the hub had to come off to change the seal i took the brake back plate off too 



The bearing was fine but it was only a couple of quid more to buy a whole kit compared to purchasing the seal,o ring,gasket and tab washer on their own.


And it's far less of a faff to build up the brake assembly on the bench than it is crouched down with it bolted on to the axle.



I was going to reuse the original 1958 drum but looking closer at it it's a bit more worn than I realised..


So ESM are sending me a new pair.

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  • 2 weeks later...



Look at the shiny shiny.. 

£16.00 each and delivered in under 48 hours you can't knock that.

I have got my tired aching joints moving long enough to get on with the completing the inner arch to floor repair and fitting the lower quarter repair panel.



The axle bump stop pad has been refitted not my finest work but it'll do.


To get the quarter panel in the right place the wing needed to be loosely bolted on and to be fair it didn't need much tweaking.




Considering its had a lot of body work over the years this end has stitched in ok.


Unlike this end that was a bit too close to the door so a bit of remodeling was required.





That'll do. This quarter panel is very wavy and has a lot of filler in it already so I'm not overly concerned as Boris was never resurrected to be a show winner.

Also I need to say this inverter welder I purchased late last year has been as good as gold and much more controlable on thin stuff and for filling in holes than my 150A Sealy mig ever was.

All that's left welding wise now is to finish in the boot where the wet crud that collects in the bump stop has rotted the floor away and also cut out and patch a crumbly bit of arch/wing flange which if remember correctly from doing the other side is right by a lead loaded joint that last time melted and dropped off from the heat of my nearby welding.



Which is just as well as I am nearly out of gas again,it'll be nice to get in to a draft free work shop so I can turn my flow down.

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While replacing the rear brakes it became apparent that the handbrake lever was a bit tired too.


It was very dry and the ratchet/trigger mechanism was sticking so it was pulled apart and given a good lube up before being repainted with some wrinkle finish coating.


Much better but not over the top.

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  • 5 weeks later...
52 minutes ago, Joey spud said:

So near yet so far...

I've spent the winter doing non mechanical jobs on a car that was on the button when it was put away that's now decided to develop an intermittent misfire. Just in time for the weather turning good. Frustrating isn't the word. Best have a never ending project, better than reality at times 😄

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Small update time seeing as there's been a raft of old shite on parade here this week. 

The welder has now been packed away as i can't find anything ferrous left to cut out and replace.

And I have bought six litres of Gravitex stone chip and a new shultz gun to liberally coat the underside and the floor/boot area with. I just need a couple of dry days before I can splash it about.

While refitting the the front hub assy I managed to mangle the brake pipe from the flexi hose to the caliper. In the olden days any independent motor factor would be able to knock me up a new pipe for a couple of quid so I ventured into my very local spares shop and left disappointed they had a roll of pipe and an assortment of fittings but no way of creating the flares (something about H+S / public liability etc).

I used to have a decent flaring tool but can't remember who I lent it to so I bought the cheapest one eBay could offer.




Not great but not bad either. It did the job ok,just needed the pipe to be perfectly squared off and deburred first 

Although I had previously rehung the n/s door and was well pleased with its fit I hadn't yet fitted the window frame/glass so it could still end up being iffy.


But no the door still fits the hole just fine.


This is my next easy job. This gearbox cover is an aftermarket one (designed to clear the bigger Sierra gearbox) and needs the unknown gunge cleaning off it where it screws/butts against the floor.


I have ordered a 5m roll of inch wide caulking that should seal any joint gaps and any left over can be also used to seal the fuel tank against the boot floor too.

I need to get Boris sort of mobile as I am moving about a mile down the road to my late father in law's place which is also lacking a garage but it has a large garden which I can access via its driveway.



So this mess.


Has turned into a nice 10x5 metre pad which will have a big comfy timber workshop built on so I can play with my Tat in the dry for the first time in twenty plus years.

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17 hours ago, Matty said:

@Joey spud how far down the country feom blackburn are you? Id love to see this when it s on the road but ive to bear in mind how far an a40 can go 😆

I am twenty mins up the A2 eastbound from the Dartford crossing or 270 miles.

I like me old BMC stuff but not that much...

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  • 4 weeks later...

Every now and then the littlest dog comes in the house with stinky oil on her back much to the other halfs annoyance. I know exactly where she is going but keep stumm but after the latest occurrence I thought it's about time I changed that weaping diff seal before I get rumbled.

How hard can it be to undo a nut torqued up to 140ft/lb ? Well my battery nut gun and old air powered gun wouldn't shift it so I needed to be able to hold the flange still while I cracked the nut off with a breaker bar (with or without added jack handle).

I consulted my  BMC Minor manual and there was talk of special tool no.18G 34 A.


 I made something far simpler out of a length of angle that was long enough to wedge against the floor.


I dot punched the pinion shaft,pinion nut and drive flange position before loosening the nut.



The old seal instead of being pliable had turned solid and plastic in nature and swapped over with its replacement easily enough.


When I torqued the nut up to the required 140ft/lb it was nice to see my punch marks were still aligned. Fresh oil was added and so far no leaks or soiled Beagle.


While I was under there I thought it prudent to renew this brake hose. I did it twice though as i'm a muppet and neglected to fit the copper washer on the end that connects to the T piece first time round.

The propshaft was devoid of paint so gave it a nice coat of some of Screwfix's finest jet black rattle can.


I need to get under the car and clean any road crud and lost fluids from the underside before I can stone chip it but my mo-jo for this task is currently non existent so instead I seam sealed where required and coated the boot area instead.





Not to everyone's taste but it had sixty years of various paint and under seals splattered around in there already so the black Gravitex is fine for how I want the car.

My old Wolf compressor is normally able to keep up with a Shultz gun but today it was struggling badly until it wasn't getting much above 30 psi and not sounding it's normal angry self. Looking closer it was leaking loads of air from around the switch/pressure valve thingy.


Replacement thingy now ordered from eBay for £8.50.

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I still can't be asked to crawl around preping the underside for stone chipping so I faffed about with the front panel and grill instead.

I had bought some Clarendon grey enamel paint but it was way too dark (almost blue) so I diluted it down with  some white radiator paint it's not bang on but better than before.




I painted the cross member and chassis legs,it'll do for area's that are out if sight.

In the future i am going to fit an electric cooling fan but for now I've put the blade back on again.


I fitted the slam panel with the rad already bolted on then realised you needed it out of the way to be able to secure the top chrome strip fixings.



I think the bonnet might need some tweaking as it seems it's front edge is totally the wrong profile.


Or it's a 64 year old bitsa so it really don't matter...

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While I was on a roll / still interested I thought it might be worth finding out if the wing I repaired off the car in 2020 would actually fit on the car.


The answer was nearly.


Ah that's not so good. I think the problem was with the outter wing and inner wing.



With a bit of trimming/welding of the mounting flange and some hammering/ repositioning of the inner wing I was able to get a satisfactory alignment after all.



Before calling it a day I popped in a flat glass H4 headlight and fitted the chrome hockey stick.



Visible progress it's like Boris is getting his face back.

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