TR 3 Sign Off

Steve tests a TR3

Steve tests a TR3 on a raw March day

March is leaving us in more typical March fashion, cold, windy and raw.  I asked Steve to run over to Abingdon Spares to pick up transmission mounts for an MG TF and suggested he take the blue MGB GT,  but he allowed as how he’d rather put some test miles on the TR3 which he’s been finishing up, instead.  So with the top down and the tonneau zipped over the passenger side he set off to travel  thru two states separated by two stop signs.

TR3 control head before servicing

TR3 horn & turn signal control head before servicing

TR3 control head after servicing

The same control head after servicing

The turn signals were a little dodgy in the TR3, with  the self-canceling mechanism a hit or miss affair.  Steve pulled the stator tube with the control head in order to see what the problem was, and apart from a worn out self-cancelling detent (replaced with the only used one we could find), the problem was an accumulation of 50 years worth of grease and grime.

mediumThis strikes to the core of our basic mantra, which is that these elegantly simple british cars were built in a manner and with materials of a quality that allows them to be rebuilt for additional long years of service.  Just contemplate trying to get the in-dash GPS device in  your SUV overhauled 25 years from now, and then consider the fact that this control head went 50.  (Steve Reed photos)

With the adjustments and running-in completed, once a couple of our faux pas are touched-in by East Coast Collision & Restoration, we’ll be turning this TR3 back over to its rightful owner.

John, Steve & Butch bleed off the rear brakes of the green Sprite

Hump Time: John, Steve & Butch try to establish rear brakes in the Sprite

Sometimes sitting for a long period of time can present challenges for resuscitating the hydraulic systems.  Working methodically, John had replaced the frozen wheel cylinders, overhauled the brake calipers and replaced the clapped-out clutch master & slave cylinders.

We had hopes of at least salvaging the brake master cylinder, and we were mightily encouraged by the strong hydraulic pressure being delivered to the front brakes.  After a longish struggle and a certain amount of bad language we gave up, and John stripped the brake master, but deep pitting in stepped bore necessitated a replacement.

mediumLater Sprites & Midgets use the same overhaul kit as 1968 thru 1974 MGB’s.  They are, however diabolically difficult cylinders to rebuild, and there are multiple snap-rings located in the cylinder bores.  We can do ’em as long as we’ve got something to work with, which wasn’t the case here.

Anyway, we won, and Wednesday the Sprite was on test, too.

John heads off to put the Sprite thru its paces

John heads off to put the Sprite thru its paces

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