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Mk1 Ford Escorts - share the love


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I've only had two Mk1s - a 1300XL saloon which had been matt blacked and had bubble arches badly fitted (the original arches were still present underneath) - I was 19 at the time though and thought it looked cool.  Then a few years later I had a rough but running and drivable 1974 van, which I paid 150 quid for - even at the time that was a bargain.  I trailered it home behind a 1.8-litre Vauxhall Carlton, which was interesting.  Eventually I realised just how rotten it was and stuck it on eBay - it made about 350 quid and I was right pleased with myself.  :roll:

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I have history with these, despite never properly owning one. In my previous career I’ve done big body work and even restos.

I never really took to them though in all honesty. Basic, rust prone everywhere and pretty feeble performance in standard specs. The motorsport heritage drives the values, but most motorsport cars were vastly altered under the skin.

ill see if I can find some pics of previous jobs.

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In no particular order.

F89B679E-0872-4C5F-917A-BB54D1213A7C.thumb.png.97b690df2065a1226ab20f1b5eee914d.png 

The roof of my brothers old one, mid resto. We were never sure what model this was and is, had a lot of type 49 strengthening panels but not all. Chassis is was a 1300, from 1971. Best guess was it was an export shell originally.

Car had the works, floors, sills, Mexico wings the lot. Present location unknown.

CD3AC822-BAED-401C-B2BB-5563AF77B8E4.thumb.png.c3442acf6b01e0be6d2c63db157497f2.pngOriginal, black Mexico. I stripped this down for owner, to quote the job. It was past £30k about ten years ago!

Never completed, since sold, location unknown.

0E89D604-8348-4948-86C7-21E371A17220.thumb.png.a2c7c8f0794d43416b2c838ebf972c43.png1974 Mexico rally car. Known to all the AVO buffs, I rescued this from a field!
proper car though, fire walled, seam welded, RAC logbook the works. Sold on as a massive resto project, which last I heard was nearing completion.

ADAB415D-4785-4E1F-9C60-13A6C6DD111F.thumb.png.65ee1ab2fc53bb196d091cfdcea23608.pngMy unit about ten years ago.

Brothers escort Cosworth, sharing space with another 74 Mexico, and a S1 RS Turbo.

I put the whole front on this one, inner wings, strut towers, large chunks Of bulkhead, loads of work. It drove out though, minus its grille and some decals.
Was finished off by the owner, finished it I think in 2011.

looked like this on the day it left. (Photo badly resized to avoid showing the id. This was never my car and I no longer am in touch with the owner)1FCAC06A-F73F-49D0-9411-C7898B1B0DB3.thumb.png.9ee63864aaee4c981d38e9201018ef07.pngthere’s several more somewhere. Including a 1968 1100 we pulled out of a Liverpool allotment. That had stood 30 odd years, with resulting decompisition everywhere.

 

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First car bought in 1981 Mk1 1100cc in Bronze with titchy steering wheel (aftermarket), had holes in the floor that used to let water in when it rained. Stuck a balanced and tuned ex stock car 1300 lump in it and it used to wheelspin in 3rd gear!! To my eternal shame chopped it in for a newer Vauxhall Shove it

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My parents bought a new mk1 in 1972. It must have been a Friday afternoon car and gave them no end of trouble, so they chopped it in at less than 12 months old for the first of two Marina coupes.

My first car was an 1100 mk1 that I bought for £210 after my A levels in 1985. I ran it for the summer and sold it on before going off to poly. It would only have been about 11 or 12 years old and was pretty rotten. I used a fair bit of fibreglass to fill holes around it. I don’t think it made it through another mot after I sold it.

Both the above cars were Daytona yellow. They were so cheap to buy back them and at least half a dozen mates from school etc were all running them. 

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1 minute ago, Dick Longbridge said:

Didn't @TripleRich's workshop restore a monumentally rogered Mk1 Mex? There was around 100g of usable metal left iirc. 

Think I saw that but it was a road model?
 

The one I had was fully prepped, cage, firewalls, twin servos, way too much for being standard really. 


I  remember the plate, might give it a google and see what happens.

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It seems an Escort Mk1 would have been one of the first cars I travelled around in, but I don't recall it (the following Avenger was the first one I remember):

Very young Spottedlaurel in pedal car #2

I don't immediately remember any other Mk1s in the family, although there was the odd Mk2 owned by aunts and uncles later in the '70s.

In the '80s they were just an older car, I remember them still in use but generally getting a bit tired. As I went to local autocross and oval racing meets there were always plenty in use there:

Escorts on the startline, Autocross early 1980s

Fast forward and I saw this excellent timewarp example in Kent back in 2002:

1969 Ford Escort 1100 Mk1

 

1969 Ford Escort 1100 Mk1

After a period of inactivity I was pleased to see it reappear on DVLA, but it doesn't look like that any more.

1973 Ford Escort camper

 

1973 Ford Escort camper

I think this splendid old camper appeared on a very early update to Spotted's Spottings, as seen at a boot sale back in 2006. Now on SORN with its last MoT having expired in 2014.

They're a common sight on the old postcards I have:

Broad Street, Welshpool old postcard 1970s

I'd be very interested to drive a bog-standard 1100 or 1300 and see how they compare to my Datsun 1200 - fairly similar spec as a cart-sprung RWD small car, the Datsun a bit lighter but with less positive steering.

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I'd really like to compare one to the Doloshite, see how they stack up in terms of handling. The Dolly has the more advanced suspension setup on paper but Ford didn't seem to make an arse of things even using leaf springs.

They're so comically expensive I'll never have one, if I had the money for another 60s/70s car I'd go for a HB Viva as I prefer the sharper styling.

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38 minutes ago, Spottedlaurel said:

1973 Ford Escort camper

 

1973 Ford Escort camper

I think this splendid old camper appeared on a very early update to Spotted's Spottings, as seen at a boot sale back in 2006. Now on SORN with its last MoT having expired in 2014.

I used to see that thing around Norwich all the time.  Driven by an old boy who would never sell it and had not the slightest bit of interest for the old Ford "scene".  The paint got gradually scruffier year by year as more patches were added to shoehorn it through another MOT.

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My grandad bought a new Mk1 in about 1971, ADF 166K. It was a metallic blue colour and took them all over the country. 

When I was at infant school in the early 90s there was a blue one lived near the school, it looked immaculate. Unfortunately I can't remember the reg though so have no idea if it survives 

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I remember them being everywhere. They were ok humdrum transport (as they were designed to be) but nothing really special & they were all pretty basic inside & not exactly refined, even the 1300E wasn't that plush.

I just don't get the crazy prices, I know it's a Ford, but a Viva, Avenger or Marina is no worse IMO & they sell for far less.

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On 2/11/2021 at 10:52 PM, Spottedlaurel said:

They're a common sight on the old postcards I have:

Broad Street, Welshpool old postcard 1970s

I'd be very interested to drive a bog-standard 1100 or 1300 and see how they compare to my Datsun 1200 - fairly similar spec as a cart-sprung RWD small car, the Datsun a bit lighter but with less positive steering.

Welshpool High Street in the good old days before they introduced that bloody stupid one way system. I nearly didn't recognise it, Welshpool only has 0.8 days of sunshine in an average year.

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Love the stories and photos shared so far. My secondary art teacher owned an  M plate violet 1300E back in the late 1980s. Such a good looking car and decent spec to boot. 

The second one must have been just ahead of the queue with the Sweeney Consul awaiting.

Ford-Escort-Mk1A082B663-137A-4EA1-B32F-57660DD0B834-914-0000004F3E0D7C3F-600x352.jpg

ford-luxury.jpg

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I have never been a big fan of Mk1 Escorts or that size car in general, a decent original looking one is a good looking car though, especially as a 4 door. My Aunty had a 4 door L from new for many years, it was certainly a nicer looking car than my Dad’s Viva. I did own a mk1 2 door briefly, bought for £50 just to sell on for a profit, I had no interest in driving it much at the time, this was years before they started fetching silly money.  I would quite like a 4 door XL but would not pay more for one than a Cortina or Rover SD1 or any number of more interesting cars at lower prices. The bubble arch rally replicas are monstrosities in my eyes though.

Here is a proper looking mk1 on ebay:

image.thumb.jpeg.a7f2e8fd78029b70de73b1e709003ff0.jpeg

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Ford-escort-mk1-1300E-barn-find-project/203276801066?hash=item2f543dd42a:g:3ZcAAOSwQdhgGBZ~

This is nice.

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On 2/11/2021 at 8:09 PM, Nibblet said:

I saw a mk1 Suntor Escort at a show (remember them?) a couple of years ago, it was fab, though I'm sure a wet weekend in Rhyl would soon cure one of the lustfulness.

This Escort Elba 1600 entered the 1970 London to Mexico.  Unfortunately did not finish. 

SkglNgn.jpg

VBM7FcJ.jpg

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My first car was a Sunset red 4-door 1300E in 1986.  Bought totally standard with the 1300GT but soon had a  1600GT and 4-speed box from a 1972 Mk1 Capri which was rebuilt.  40 thou service rebore (about 1660cc), balanced, lightened flywheel, Piper 285 cam, inlet and exhaust ports cleaned up and matched to the manifolds, re-jetted Weber 38DGAS (two mechanically operated chokes) from a 3-litre Capri, Mk1 RS2000 exhaust from the middle back, and a RS steering wheel.  Great fun to drive, direct steering with plenty of feel to it, easy revving with 7000rpm rev limit, fast at the time.  Swapped the std 4.11 diff for a 3.77.  Also swapped on front struts from a 2-litre Capri which drops the front by about an inch and stiffens things up a bit - straight swap on Mk1s and Mk2s up till about 1978 when the large strut top holes in the shell were made smaller.

Had it about a year and it looked standard, even the standard wheels (with 185/70 tyres).  A simple, easy to work on, reliable car.

No pics but the one below (1978 pic) is identical.  Pic is from Orkney with personalised Orkney reg.  I wondered if the one I had was actually the same car which had been re-registered back to it's original number (mine had Inverness reg number).  Sunset 4-doors were quite rare and only available for a few months (spring 1974 till the end of production late 74).  Note triple white coachlines, same as Cortina Mk3 GT, and the 1300E was the only 4-door available with Mex / RS flared front wings.

TCwFu2J.jpg

All a bit academic now as it was scrapped in 1992.  Next owner parked it in long wet grass in 1990 for about 18 months, two winters, and it was fuckin fucked m8.  Engine was saved though, as was interior, dash, wood trim, various external trim.

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