The Austin Healey 3000 Mk III’s (mine was HBJ8L 40502, now in Canada) break down into early Phase 1 cars up to chassis # 26704 and later Phase 2 cars from 26705 on. The principal differences being the larger front disc brakes and separate turn signals of the Phase 2 Healeys. Pictured here is a Phase 1 car recovered earlier this week from a barn in Montpelier, which for the benefit of
trivia buffs is the only State Capital without a Mac Donalds hamburger restaurant. Sitting around in damp semi-damp storage is not always beneficial. The white smoke behind the blue car is emanating from the blown power brake servo. Butch & Ian road tested it initially and they had a very bad moment upon discovering the condition at the Putney turn-around where they initially
supposed it to be a blown head gasket. Skip Tannen was out in his Sprite last week when he heard and almighty BANG and lost all drive thru the rear wheels. This is a Sprite & Midget condition known as the ralphing of the half shaft. The splined inner end of the rear axle half shaft which transmits drive to the rear wheels snapped off inside differential on the right side, the side that
usually leaks first. Rectification is fairly straightforward: Take off the brake drums, loosen the Phillips screw & slide the 1/2 shafts out of the diff. Take out the driveshaft and unbolt the differential housing from the axle case. Clean everything thoroughly and reassemble using two new heat treated, bullet proof half shafts from England.
Right along with the biannual brake fluid change and the checking of the spare tire air pressure (how much air is in your spare right now ?), maintaining proper coolant strength in a clean, well maintained cooling system is the key to happiness in hot weather. We always check that the concentration of coolant is sufficient to carry out its secondary task as a corrosion inhibitor, and sometimes we get some very nasty surprises, like the brown sludge (former coolant) in this Mini. It was so bad we couldn’t even see the pointer in the tester.