The strip-out of the GT6 is going well but I have to admit that seeing the complete wiring loom sitting there on the garage floor left me wondering whether I’ll ever be able to get the whole thing back together without the headlights dipping every time I switch on the windscreen wipers! What is absolutely certain is that when the time comes its going to take me rather longer to put it all back together than it’s taken to pull the poor car apart.
In the meantime I’ve sent the engine block, head and some other bits and pieces down to Malmesbury to be chemically cleaned and for the water passages to be ‘de-furred’ – the removal of forty odd years of calcification will hopefully help it to keep the engine running nice and cool in the future. The next step will be to get the bearings and bores checked/sorted before ordering the first tranche of new parts and starting the process of reassembling the engine.
Over the weekend I spent a little time getting Bertie ready for his winter quarters. Having four cars and only two garage bays means that he’s being sent off to spend the next few months in a local barn along with a dozen or so Reliant Scimitars and Sabres.!
Having satisfied myself that the engine actually runs and isn’t a basket case, it was time to remove it from the car in preparation for complete dismantling. The last time I had to lift an engine I foolishly decided to do it over Christmas – suffice to say that things didn’t go completely according to plan and the Christmas holiday nearly turned into a disaster. This time, however, things were different.
The biggest surprise about the Triumph so far has been the ease with which I’ve been able to take the car apart. You’d think that after 25 years (apparently the last rebuild was in 1989) most things would be rusted solid, but perhaps the fact that its been off the road for the last 12 years has made more of a difference than I’d expected – anyway the fact is that with liberal applications of WD40, everything so far seems to be coming apart pretty easily. The engine and gearbox came out ‘sweet as a nut’; no drama, no grazed knuckles, in fact not so much as a single swear word. Two hours steady work and there it was, sitting on the garage floor waiting to be stripped down before being sent off to be chemically cleaned. So far so good.
Before starting to take the Triumph to bits it seemed like a good idea to see if I could get the engine running, so that I’d at least know whether there was anything catastrophic that would need sorting during the rebuild. As the previous owner had told me that it hadn’t run for at least 12 years it was fairly obviously not simply going to be a case of charging the battery (which, by the way, was knackered) and turning the key.
I’d already removed the petrol tank as it was clear that any 12 year old fuel remaining would be completely stale and useless, so a gallon can of the amber nectar was perched just beneath the fuel pump in readiness for the ‘great start-up’. Getting a spark out of the ignition system, however, took a little longer to resolve; having first removed the add-on electronic ignition system fitted by the previous owner I then spent several frustrating days replacing first the coil, then the condenser and finally the plug leads before I finally worked out (with a little help from Google) that I needed to remove the now redundant ballast resistor from the ignition circuit. Job done, turn the key for a few seconds, and……………. she lives!
Wonderful! Now down to the slightly long-winded business of stripping out the engine compartment in preparation for removing the engine and gearbox.
….holiday blogs, motoring obsessions and an occasional account of goings-on in the Ewbank household