This E-type came in late last week for tuning and a general check-over. A minor miracle of sorts ensued when we went to take it out for a test drive… It sullenly refused to start. My question to the owner was, “Replaced any tune up parts lately ?”, which was affirmative, so I bustled into the parts room and grabbed a “Red” ignition rotor, and Et Voila ! the car started right up and our roadtest was underway.
You may recall that my faithful winter beater MGB GT went into limp-home mode twice this past winter, so if you’re wondering how this Jag made it the 150 miles to Sports Car Services, you really shouldn’t, they just do.
We also ran a compression test (Good) made a carburetor mixture adjustment and indulged an intuitive hunch and checked continuity on the ignition wires, also recently replaced, and none was detected.
O.K. that was sort of a surprise, too, but not a big one, because it was a carbon core ignition wire set, and in our experience they’re not very durable at all. We replaced it with a ACCEL silicon wire set from a speed shop.
In other Jaguar news Patrick helped Rob finish up his four synchro E-type transmission, and although he doesn’t know it yet, there’s a Healey side shift overdrive TX on the bench now waiting for Patrick’s attention.
Back to Ignition parts for just a moment; we’ve had nothing but misery the last few years from ignition rotors and condensors that fail prematurely, and even sometimes immediately upon installation. This stuff, if sourced from the usual suspects, is crap like those carbon wires ! We’ve met this contingency by switching to the Advanced Distributors “Red” ignition rotors, and by buying (when we can find ’em) Standard Ignition condensors, or NAPA Echlin condensors (Part # EP29). So what if they’re three times the money? Cheaper isn’t better when you’re waiting for a tow truck.
Also, from late last week, a “floating” MG TD, suspended in the paint shop at East Coast Collision & Restoration.
Friday was start up day for the Phase One Austin Healey BJ8. Because the owner and his video camera were in the shop, that moment was recorded for posterity. Butch Howe was at the controls. I was under the bonnet of the yellow E-type when it roared to life.
The fuel feed has been arranged from a five gallon gas can because the overnighted aluminum gas tank from the major vendor wasn’t any better than the owner-supplied aluminum gas tank from a major vendor. We are prepared to make someone a very attractive price on an Austin Healey gas tank that won’t fit. Click here for “Desperately Seeking Oil Pressure” video
Apart from a factory installed stripped drain plug hole thread, the sending unit flange on the black tank wasn’t within a country mile of fitting the sending unit. The tank on the right was much better in this regard. Too bad it was too big to fit where it’s supposed to go, although it might be possible to use it as an auxiliary in place of the spare tire.