Jump to content

Classic Mini. Alright now ain’t it


Recommended Posts

I'd say, with the rust provisos of previous posters duly noted, go for it.

When BAe owned Rover, we had lease cars available through work. I had, in succession, two Mini Coopers and a Mini City, all of the last fling fuel injected, rubber suspension* variety.  Of course being brand new they were rust free, but they were not oil tight.  Great fun to drive and they will hold four adults more easily than my Reliant Regal MK6.  The boot will fit 3 Tesco carrier bags if you don't mind squashed loaves and broken eggs.

Link to post
Share on other sites
10 minutes ago, warch said:

I always fancied one of those Minis with the carbon fibre shell. Although I expect even a carbon fibre Mini would still have a bloody good go at corroding somehow.

Apart from the subframes it would be fine. Also  fibreglass shells are OK,  tend to be heavy though

I've had a Mini Marcos.  See  also Domino Pimlico and Mini Minus which had a lower roof,

Loads of others back in the day,

Link to post
Share on other sites

Anyone who tells you that you can only do short journeys in a Mini is a ponce who needed their legs slapped more when they were a child. I spent 3 years doing a 90 mile a day commute in one and they are never anything short of hilarious. The 998 may appear to be feeble on paper but they are more than capable of keeping up with modern traffic. For all we get excited about Cooper this, twin SU that and discs all you really need is a drum braked City E in hearing aid beige.

The ignition shield has been mentioned already but it is essential. Motorways in heavy rain are no joke without one.

The problem is finding one that isn't a rotter. On top of that the wiring looms slowly fall to pieces, bearings and balljonts things wear out with monotonous regularity and everything rots some more so they really aren't a painless prospect. I've entertained the idea of taking a new Mk4 shell, sending it to be EP coated and then finding a suitable V5 to build a new and dependable City E. Then you break out the calculator and realise the sheer bonkersness of the plan and go back to driving something much cheaper.

Can you imagine how light a modern Mini would be if we weren't bogged down with all the shite we lug round in cars now? What a splendid way to minimise the use of resources.

Link to post
Share on other sites

It's a bit of a shame really, as in the 80s and 90s these were pocket-change runabout cars that anyone could fix with a hammer.  The biggest thing against them is the fact that they've been out of production for 20-something years.

No less useable today than they were 30 years ago, it's just that mainstream cars have moved on and Minis (obviosuly) haven't.

Link to post
Share on other sites

http://absmotorsport.co.uk/product/mini-sprint-body-shell-kit-carbon-fibre-composite-kit/

Yes it does say 8 and half grand, but at least it won't be water soluble.

Edit; In respect of what Talbot wrote about fixing them with a hammer, my 76 Mini Thou had a sticky starter which did in fact used to respond to a good hammering. That or sticking it in gear and rocking it back and forth.

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Talbot said:

It's a bit of a shame really, as in the 80s and 90s these were pocket-change runabout cars that anyone could fix with a hammer.  The biggest thing against them is the fact that they've been out of production for 20-something years.

No less useable today than they were 30 years ago, it's just that mainstream cars have moved on and Minis (obviosuly) haven't.

Thats the thing, when they were 10 a  penny and cost buttons to run you could forgive some of the short comings. 

Now they cost thousands you might expect a few comforts.

A used Focus for the same money would be dull and anonymous  but well equipped, comfy and reliable.

There's your choice.

Link to post
Share on other sites

As everyone else has said, look for rust, rust and rust.Is this from a dealer or private?Have you managed to look at the MOT history.I have bought low mileage ones years ago and when pressed into regular service every the brakes burst, wheel cylinders and I had one or two I think where the tappet covers pissed oil everywhere.

Maybe you have a link that we could look at?

Link to post
Share on other sites

I had the misfortune to be knocked of my pushbike by a mini 30 odd years ago. My bike was bent and I was bruised. The mini? Dented bonnet and the front wing was caved in. Bobby that came out remarked he had seen some horrendous collisions involving minis.

A work colleague drove his mini chelsea into a wall. The engine, still running, entered the passenger compartment.

Would I have one? You bet.  The same person that stuffed his chelsea bought a cooper in 1990 when they went on sale. Despite it's low power it felt very quick - you are so close to the road. Family members had 70's examples - clubmans IIRC. I always said if I ever had one I would paint it like a scalextric model - with the chequer pattern on the roof.

I ride a hayabusa so ncap stars mean the square root of fuck all to me.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I'd never drive a classic Mini nowadays, they're just not safe. 

*eats donut while waiting in KFC drive through*

I mean, do you see how thin those doors are? Imagine you get hit by a truck! Not safe at all.

*vape runs out of home made 24mg nicotine juice, lights cigarette with the heating coil*

And they're so small other cars don't even see them.

*loops rope around door handle for auto erotic asphyxiation*

Maybe they were okay in the 60s but not safe at all now. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a classic mini and agree they are brilliant. Easy to fix, iconic , and theres absolutely nothing better than the gokart handling. but having two kids the thought of crashing it terrifies me .that being said I opened the door into an oncoming bus and all it took to fix was a fettle with some molegrips and a skim of filler. I've been contemplating selling mine and buying a 924 or something a little safer. When looking I agree with the posts above, check it doesn't have the wider oversills. The original sills are much thinner and have vents to allow the moisture out. Oversills don't and consequently the moisture and water ingress builds up rotting them inside out. Not so bad if it's a project but if you are paying top cash then I'd walk away. The oversills have saved many a car getting them through MOTs that would otherwise have let them be scrapped, so are good in those respects, for a quick fix back when they were 10 a penny. but now a classic it's seen as a bit of a bodge

 

IMG_20210228_100713.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites

As said above, theminiforum is very good, plenty of knowledgeable helpful folk on there.

Yep, they rust. Lots. My '94 i'm doing at the moment was a very nice example, once one bleb appears though, there's others lurking. I had to do LOADS of metalwork to it and it looked a cracker. I'm still finding bits now - I thought i'd whip the front shock top mounts off to clean and paint them - there was nothing left behind!  Check the seams around the bulkhead and inner wing brace panels for any signs of grot.

They used to be cheap - now they are not. Parts are readily available, most repro stuff needs a lot of work, genuine is mega pricey.  £478 for the rear subframe. Genuine inner wing i've just bought to chop up to repair mine was £180

Minispares are probably the best supplier - they seem to put a lot of effort into reproducing stuff so it's decent quality.

I reckon with modern underseals and rust preventers, and a bit of care it should be possible to slow the inevitable creep of rust - i'm building mine as a daily so im hoping, anyway :D 

 

 

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Neither of mine have got any worse rust-wise since I've owned them; one I've had for 13 years.  I use both of these cars throughout the year and only keep them off the road in the salty season.

I do not let them gather mud underneath and use plenty of Vactan under the arches where the paint is thin or there is surface rust.  There is no underseal on any of my cars- you've got to be able to see the paint/ metal so you know what to treat.

This all sounds labour intensive but I only do it once a year in the summer- get the car up on four stands, get it properly clean underneath and treat anything you see.  Do that and you'll never suffer extreme rot if you buy a decent enough car in the first place.  The 1982 City has just started to go at the front of the passenger foot well but I've caught it early enough to stop it becoming a problem!

 

PS- I'd drive either car (both drum brakes all round) from one end of the UK to the other, with only fuel stops!!  They are perfectly comfortable and totally reliable if well looked after.

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Danterzza said:

We are going to look at it tomorrow. Mrs. T is excited so that's a good start.

It is expensive for one in my eyes but if it is as good as they say hopefully its worth it.

 

 

You've bought it already.

 

You just don't know it. 😄

 

 

Link to post
Share on other sites
28 minutes ago, schonker said:

Good point Mally,sorry about the link thing .Lets just hope its a good one!

No problem, it wasn't a dig.

I mentioned something similar as a newbie on here and got shot down with  "we don't do that on here".

There are good and bad on every forum.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm biased towards mini's, I've got two of them! 

Summary: great fun, big smiles, you feel very vulnerable driving it, they will rust everywhere.

Even as a mini owner I can't comprehend the price they make now. I actually believe they aren't value for money. The days of cheap mini's are long gone.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Danterzza changed the title to Classic Mini. Alright now ain’t it

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×
×
  • Create New...