Sturdier Foundations

Butch welds up an MGB floor

MGB Repair in progress with Butch

An Austin Healey king pin replacement delayed progress on the squirrley green MGB.  Front end work on Healeys is usually a straight ahead repair for us.  Being in posession of a set of genuine Churchill reamers allow us to keep reconditioned stub axle & king pin sets on the shelf for immediate installation, although sometimes we have to wade thru the after-effects of previous repairs before the job is done.  The afore-mentioned Austin Healey created a good deal of consternation when upon

damaged floor

last week

rot cut out

this week

completion the car wouldn’t even turn over, let alone start.  We traced this back to its recent restoration.  Having lost a hold down screw from the starter button, the restorer simply balled up the end of the other wire and stuffed it in the back of the switch with a small screw driver.  We’re always thankful to discover problems like this on our watch instead of the owner’s.  But I digress…

missing shock bolt

Lunch break shock installation ? (missing bolt)

So far this week I have retrieved a TR6 from Branford, Connecticut, delivered an E-type Jaguar to Greenfield, Massachusetts just down the road, performed a hostage exchange in Dorset & East Dorset, Vermont (that Austin Healey for a TR3), and last night returned an MGB to Burlington and retrieved another MGB from Washington, Vermont.  It’s how I while away the idle hours after work.  Anyway, a Wednesday morning road test of the TR6 revealed both a floating rear suspension and an alarming lack of power.  While we haven’t dug down to the running issue yet, we have some insight into the rear suspension deficency.

diff fill plug

Access Denied

tie plate removed

Access Granted

When changing gear lubes it’s always a good idea to make sure that you can get the fill plug out first.  Gravity being what it is and all, it’s the Devil’s Work to to replenish the unit any other way.  The differential fill plug in the Jaguar E-type is an excellent case in point, and there’s nothing worse than a tight fill plug in a tight place.  I’m embarrassed to tell you that after 40 years of E-type ownership myself the journeyman answer has only occured to me relatively recently:  Drop the tie plate, as seen here.

Here’s that car on test in Walpole, New Hampshire during an Abingdon Spares parts run:

E-type in Walpole, N.H.

Downtown Walpole, New Hampshire nr. Abingdon Spares

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