April Update On Sol – The African Rally +4

Since I last wrote about progress on Sol, a good deal has happened, as following on from the making of the brake lines the car was despatched to VSM for the wings to be fitted. We had sourced a set of new Superform wings from the factory. Not strictly correct, or quite the right style for Sol, but more readily available and also having a link to Holden, in that Holden Aluminium (now part of the Sapa Group) form the extruded outer edge wing beading for Superform. In fact, prior to Holden Aluminium relocating to Bromyard, the wing beading was formed in the very building in which Sol is being restored!

In an amazingly short period of four days, Steve had managed to trim and fit all four wings, Sol being retrieved on the fourth day to take up a position on the Morgan Sports Car Club stand at the Practical Classics Restoration Show, gaining much admiration and questions about the rebuild, the specification, the general construction of a Morgan, as well as the ever present ‘I thought these cars had a wooden chassis’ question!

Following the Show were four days until Sol could return to VSM, so as the wings were fitted the opportunity was taken to fit the wing stays. Front wings are supported at the centre line of the front wheel, the other end being attached to the top of the cross head. Previously, making these has been something akin to Blacksmithing, as the Factory supplied items were only ever somewhere near to fitting, in that there was a bolt hole at each end and a shape something like the wing profile. However, nowadays things are different! Someone at Morgan has discovered that by making the bracket a shape much more like the wing and putting slotted holes at each end, one part can fit a multitude of cars! This main front stay aside, all the rest had to be made from flat steel strip. There is still one more to do, but this can only be done once there is an exhaust system in place.

Whilst ferreting through a box of parts for the car, we found the door locks which thankfully had been rescued off the old doors. With a little bit of a clean up and some light oil they appeared to work well and showed little signs of much wear, so as the doors were currently being held shut with a small piece of wood and a screw, they were fitted. Not without having to make a packing piece from a piece of thin steel! A little careful adjustment and they latched shut, albeit being a bit on the tight side – but as the body settles and once it is firmly bolted to the chassis the locks will no doubt need some more fettling to get them spot on.

Having done these relatively minor tasks, I tackled the brake line across the back axle and the main line from the front of the car to the rear. This runs down the chassis rail on the passenger side of the car, opposite to the master cylinder which makes the pipe run somewhat longer, but it does keep it well away from the exhaust!

With these few little tasks completed, Easter was upon us, and the following Tuesday Sol was due back to VSM for the bonnet to be made. Dodging the ever present rain showers Sol made the journey from the Workshop to VSM without getting wet or dirty. Amazingly!

Just over a week later, a phone call to say that Sol was done and could be collected was a bit of a surprise, as the anticipation was that it would be at least another week. Steve had done the job quicker than he had suggested and it was ready.

The bonnets and cowl were now fitted, the cowl box had been made and bolted in – this insignificant sounding and fiddly to fit bit of sheet metal is the part that holds the front of the valances together and provides the mounting point for the Morgan grille. Steve had also fitted the windscreen for us and at the same time cut the slots for the windscreen wiper wheelbox spindles in the scuttle. Both of these jobs being far easier when a template and plenty of experience are readily available! Getting the angle of the windscreen wrong can affect the aesthetics of the car, not to mention cause a nuisance when it comes to fitting side screens.

This the brings us to the point where some of the ‘furniture’ can be fitted. So far, a pair of headlights have been fitted, using period correct 3-adjuster steel headlamp bowls instead of the more modern plastic option, a set of front indicators added, which is something that we don’t think Sol would have had from new, but are being fitted from a safety point of view. With these installed, Sol has somehow taken a leap towards becoming a complete car!

Wiper wheelboxes have been put in place, together with a new piece of tube for the wiper rack. This comes as a lovely straight piece of tube and has to be carefully cut and shaped to fit, ensuring not to kink the tube or bend it too tightly, otherwise the rack simply won’t run smoothly and the motor will be straining to operate correctly. A modern 2 speed motor has been fitted in place of the original single speed one to hopefully provide better wipers, although we are hoping the trip through Africa will not see too much rain, you never know!

Another job was to fit the tread rubbers to the wings. These comprise a very soft aluminium extrusion that is bolted to the wing with plenty of small coach bolts, which are then hidden by the rubber strip. These have had to be ordered from the Factory, so a couple of old ones that had been replaced on a car in the Workshop were used as templates.

The final job that brings us currently up to date has been to fit the bellhousing to the gearbox and overhaul the clutch operating mechanism. Those readers familiar with a Moss box in a Morgan will understand this, others may not. Essentially, the Moss gearbox is mounted remotely from the engine at the end of an approximately 2 feet long Magnesium bellhousing. At the flywheel end there is a cast aluminium sleeve that contains a carbon clutch thrust pad, this slides within the magnesium casting to operate the clutch by pushing against a steel pad in the centre of the clutch cover. The sleeve is connected via a mechanical linkage to the pedal and has 5 separate pivot points, each one wears and contributes towards the linkage being sloppy, add this to a lack of grease having been applied to the grease point where the aluminium sleeve slides and the end result is a clutch that is terrible to operate at best.

The cure for the lack of grease – and hence the slide for the aluminium sleeve becoming oval – is to machine the magnesium casting back to round and press in a piece of seamless steel tube. This job was entrusted to GEE, who helpfully had one available as an exchange! The rest of the linkage was overhauled and new pivot pins and split pins fitted to make it all work correctly. Once the bellhousing was bolted to the gearbox with the connecting shaft fitted first (the muff coupling on the nose of the gearbox input shaft does not fit through the aluminium clutch sleeve) it was placed in the chassis. At this point, we could not resist fitting the propshaft – just to make sure it fitted!

The coming week or so will see the fitting of the beading to the outer edge of the wings, fitting rear lamps, the addition of the bonnet catches and sorting out the fuel tank. Once this is all done, we will be somewhere near to being ready for paint. The burning question now, is what colour……..!

Make the most of your classic car while the sun is shining!

We Brits know that the weather can be notoriously unpredictable. One moment, the Beast From The East is causing a national freeze, the next it’s 25 degrees and we’re digging out last year’s leftover sunblock.

So when we do get to enjoy a spot of fortunate weather, it’s important we make the most of it by bringing our classic motors out of their winter hibernation. After all, there really is no greater feeling than driving down beautiful country lanes with the top down on a warm Summer’s day.

Here’s what you can do to enjoy your classic car throughout the remainder of Spring and into the Summer months.

1. Give your classic motor a spring clean

This is the perfect time of year to really show off your classic car, especially if you’re scheduled to attend a classic motoring event sometime over the coming weeks. That’s why we recommend using the Autoglym Full Bodyworks and Wheels kit. This fantastic collection of cleaning products includes instant tyre dressing, shampoo conditioner, super resin polish, extra gloss protection, alloy wheel seal and clean wheels wash. Over the last few months of rain, wind and unprecedented levels of snow, your car will need a thorough wash down using the Autoglym shampoo conditioner to remove unwanted grime. You’ll also need to clear any grit and dirt from the wheels using the clean wheels wash. After the wheels have dried, you can use the alloy wheel seal to spray the rim of the wheels, although you must be careful not to spray through wheels onto brake discs or calipers. Once applied, buff the surface with dry cotton cloth and finish with the instant tyre dressing for a beautiful shine. Back to the car’s body, once the shampoo conditioner has dried, you’ll be able to apply the polish and extra gloss protection, giving your motor a spectacular shine while guarding it from common Summer hazards.

2. Treat your classic motor to a splash of paint

If you think your classic car’s chassis is looking a little dull, you might want to consider treating it to a lick of paint in time for the summer months. This can bring any classic vehicle back to life and give you an added sense of pride if you’re attending classic car shows or similar motoring events. POR-15 make a number of suitable paints, all of which have anti-rust properties to keep your car in better shape for the long haul. If you’d like to try out this paint before committing to it, you can purchase the POR-15 Super Starter Kit which includes metal prep, rust prevention coating and a cleaner degreaser, as well as latex gloves and two wooden handle paint brushes. Remember that cleaning your car is critical before applying paint so that fibres and bugs aren’t trapped beneath the paintwork, as this can create an uneven coating.

3. Take your car to an event

Throughout the rest of April and into May, classic car and motorcycle events are found in abundance across the country and beyond. At Holden Vintage & Classic, not only do we list our favourite events each month on our blog, but attend many of these ourselves! If you’ve seen an event that’s caught your eye and are thinking of entering as a participants, we are more than willing to talk to you about the best ways you can prep your car beforehand. Alternatively, you can bring your car into our Service and Restoration Bay for a full check-up.

And while you’re here….

We’d like to present to you this stunning Morgan 3-wheeler for sale at the Holden Morgan showroom.

Ordinarily, when purchasing this stunning classic motor from the Morgan factory directly, you would expect to wait months before becoming its owner. But with us, there is no wait at all. Treat yourself to this gorgeous new and unregistered car with 0 mileage for just £39995. For more information, click here or email Katie@holden.co.uk.

 

Classic Motoring Events April 2018

With the race season fully underway, we are excited to see what April has in store for the classic motoring enthusiast. This month Bromyard Speed Festival goes on tour, and Bringsty Grand Prix returns after a 70 year absence. You can also find some exciting workshops and bike shows across the country in the coming weeks.

 The Bringsty Grand Prix POSTPONED

The Bringsty Grand Prix will run in the Herefordshire countryside for the first time since 1947. Supported by local land owners and in keeping with the ethos of The Bromyard Speed Festival, this historic motorcross event will take place at the Tiblands Farm, Linley Green Road, Bromyard WR6 5RE, where motoring enthusiasts from all over the country are expected to gather in celebration of its much-anticipated return. PLEASE NOTE THE ORIGINAL DATE  OF 7 APRIL HAS BEEN POSTPONED DUE TO WATERLOGGED GROUND.

7 April 2018 The Carole Nash Great Scottish Bike Show 

Based at the Royal Highland Centre, Edinburgh, this fantastic classic bike show will feature classic bike fire-up paddocks, celebrity motorcycle guests, children’s motorcycle experiences, a custom bike show and numerous trade and autojumble stands. You can get your tickets (starting at £13.85) by clicking here. 

7 April 2018 – The Cardiff Motorcycle Show Glamorgan 

Back for its 26th year, the Classic Motorcycle Show will take place at  Llanishen High School, Heol Hir, Cardiff Glamorgan, CF14 5YL and this year will feature 150 bikes spanning the eras. Over a thousand guests are expected to attend, with trade stands and experts on hand for a chat about the latest motorcycle news.

15 April 2018 – Classics At The Mill, Somerset 

Classics at the Mill is a family friendly classic vehicle meeting at the Haselbury Mill, a captivating venue in the heart of the Somerset countryside. The day will feature family centric entertainment, including crafts and activities, 150 classic vehicles on display and a hog roast ready to eat for when you get a bit peckish. Local pubs and restaurants will be open as usual.

15 April 2018 – The Southern Classics Spring Show, Sussex

The Southern Classics Spring Show is planned to take place at Tangmere Military Aviation Museum, Tangmere, Chichester Sussex, PO20 2ES. Featuring an autojumble and trade stands, this classic motoring event is the perfect opportunity for classic car owners to come together.

21 April 2018 Classic Virgin Experience Day Classic Car Ownership Workshop

Gain a better understanding of classic car maintenance with this superb workshop for classic car owners. The day will kick off with a session offering expert guidance on the practicalities of classic car ownership including rally participation, club membership and social activities, facilities you will need to care for your car, finance, insurance, and what to look out for when choosing your classic car. After this you’ll attend a practical session in a fully decked out restoration workshop and learn the fundamentals of classic car maintenance, from filter changes and brake fluid checks to ignition and fuel care.

21-22 April 2018 Formula Vintage Championship 

The Formula Vintage Championship will take place on the National Circuit of Silverstone on 21 and 22 April. The exhilarating two day event remains one of the VSCC’s most popular events with spectators and competitors alike, and this year will feature free access to the paddocks, an opportunity to dress up in vintage motoring clothing and classic motoring stalls and trade stands. Tickets from £15. If you’d like to treat yourself to a new vintage outfit for this event, you can look in our Holden Vintage & Classic shop. 

28 April 2018 – British & Midland Championships Weekend, Gloucestershire 

The British & Midland Championships Weekend is planned to take place at Gotherington, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, Saturday 28th and Sunday 29th April 2018 and is expected to feature some of the fastest hillclimb cars in the country. Trade stands and experts will be on hand to answer your questions, and there is refreshments available for the whole family to enjoy.

Should you need any parts, accessories or clothing for any one of these classic motoring events, you can visit our website.

 

The Bringsty Grand Prix 2018

The Bringsty Grand Prix will run in the Herefordshire countryside for the first time since 1947 on 7th April 2018.
Supported by local land owners and in keeping with the ethos of The Bromyard Speed Festival, this historic motorcross event will take place at the Tiblands Farm, Linley Green Road, Bromyard WR6 5RE, where motoring enthusiasts from all over the country are expected to gather in celebration of its much-anticipated return.
Assisted by one of the spectators at the 1947 event, the original course has been identified, and it is still possible to follow most of its alignment over one mile traversing bog, stream, ledge and steep climb.
The one-day spectacular starts at 10.30am and is an ideal opportunity for onlookers to get up close and personal with some of the finest classic motorcycles in the country with unrivalled views of the event running across Garness, Brodie and Carter land.
The Bringsty Grand Prix first took place following the end of the Second World War and to reflect the historic link, and money raised this year will be given to charities which will include Help for Heroes. It goes without saying that motoring events such as these are not only a way to promote the area and boost tourist interest, but to also bring people together in recognition of an important time in British history.

SOL – The African Rally Morgan +4 at the Practical Classics Restoration Show

Built in 1955 at The Morgan Motor Company, this car was one of the early Morgans to carry the now familiar traditional Morgan body style that has been in production for over 60 years. Echos of its predecessor, the Flat Rad +4 are still evident in the rear section, where the car carries 2 spare wheels vertically behind the rear axle and the fuel tank.

Sadly, little is known of its early history, aside from it ending up near to the Solway Coast,  Scotland in the 1970 where, not too long after receiving an exchange TR2 engine from the Standard Motor Company, it was laid up in a barn. This was possibly due to the replacement engine suffering a failure of some sort, as we found a couple of bent push rods on disassembly. We believe that the recorded mileage on the odometer of approximately 75,000 miles is pretty much genuine, as other parts of the car showed little evidence of too much wear.

Fast forward to March 2017, and the car appeared in a listing on a well-known Auction website, very much a restoration project, but looking quite complete. Jeremy Holden, the car’s owner, was the successful bidder and it was decided that the car would make an interesting centre piece for the new showroom of Holden-Morgan, the Midland Morgan Agent, that was founded in the April of 2017.

Towards the middle of the year, information circulated from Rally Round regarding an event that would take place in October 2018 in Africa, going from Dar Es Salaam to Cape Town over 28 days and 7,000 Kilometres. Holden Vintage & Classic are a supporter of Rally Round, and it was felt that it may be interesting to take part in one of their events. The old, tired +4 was an ideal candidate, being rugged, simple mechanically and a vehicle which Holden are familiar with.

The rebuild commenced in earnest at the end of November 2017 with much work being carried out. Far more has been achieved than is currently on display, as the gearbox has been rebuilt, the engine is all but finished, brakes have all been fitted, as has the steering. These components have been removed currently for final finishing and painting, and for the wings to be fitted. The engineless chassis being far easier to manoeuvre around the Workshop than a complete car!

The next step is to fit the bonnet, and then to remove all the panel work and send it to the paintshop during which time the mechanical side will be completed ready for the finished body work.

New showing: The Bromyard Speed Festival – On Tour to Shelsley Walsh,  8th April 2018

Bromyard Speed Festival On Tour 2018

Bromyard Speed Festival is back, and this year, it’s going on tour! Unlike previous years when the streets of Bromyard were packed with classic and vintage vehicles from across the decades,  2018’s speed festival will be held at Shelsley Walsh, where participants will have the opportunity to experience driving on one of the world’s oldest race tracks!

Here’s what you can expect:

The event this year will be held on 8th April between 9am and 5.30pm, at Shelsley Walsh motoring venue situated between Great Whitley and Bromyard. Up to 140 cars and motorcycles will be in attendance, including rally cars, single-seaters and never-seen-before entrants, each being offered 4 runs up the track spread throughout the day. What’s more, in some circumstances passengers will also be allowed in the car with you, making this a special event for couples and families. Paddocks will be set up for spectators to view the cars and motorcycles when they are stationary, and an abundance of trade stands, motoring experts and club representatives will be on hand to answer your questions and offer their insights.

Entrants so far include:

Honda CBR F2 600cc Racing Bike

Global GT1 Single Seater Sports Racing Car

1951 Matchless G3RC Trials Bike

Porsche 928 S4 5litre V8

1958 Triumh TR3A 

Please note that it is £50 to enter your car for this event and you can do so by clicking here. Entrance for spectators is free but parking at the venue will cost £10.

AND THAT’S NOT ALL!

The day before the event, on 7th April, you are also invited to the Bringsty Grand Prix 2018!

Opening at 10.30am at Tiblands Farm, Linley Green Road, Bromyard WR6 5RE, this incredible motorcross event hasn’t taken place since 1947! For full details, you can read our dedicated blog post. If you’re interested in entering your motorcycle into this event, you can click here.

 

March 2018 Classic Car and Moroting Events

March plays host to a number of interesting classic motoring events across the UK and beyond. Below we have noted some of our favourites, from an intimate dinner talk with the iconic Harry Sherrand to Techno Classica, one of the largest indoor classic car events in the world!

3 March Carol Nash Great Scottish Bike Show 

Showcasing an impressive spread of classic bikes from across the ages, this fun and action-packed event is suitable for any bike enthusiast or owner. A bike jumble sale will give you the opportunity to grab a bargain, and a number of trade experts will be in attendance to help you with any queries relating to your classic bike.

14 March Harry Sherrard: My Life Behind the Wheel, Goodwood

Discussing his incredible motoring pursuits from across the decades, Harry Sherrad gives his time and insights to an intimate crowd at Goodwood this March. As well as the opportunity to gain in-depth information about Harry’s amazing adventures, you also enjoy a 3 course meal and welcome drink as part of the package. Get your ticket quickly! This is expected to sell out fast.

21-25 March Techno Classica 2018 Germany

Possibly one of the most popular indoor classic vehicle events in the world, Techno Classica doesn’t hold back when it comes to delivering an entertaining classic car experience. Featuring over 1200 exhibitors from 30 nations and almost 200,000 visitors across the 5 days, this is a truly extraordinary event that won’t disappoint.

24-25 March Kent Big Weekend

The Kent Big Weekend is a fun family friendly event offering a number of fantastic experiences, including access to the intriguing Dover Transport Museum. While this isn’t strictly a classic motoring event, there is an opportunity to explore transport through the ages via a variety of activities, as well as access to a nearby campsite for all of you ‘outdoorsy types’.

24-25 March The Manchester Bike Show

Back for its 7th year, this fantastic bike show features over 750 bikes from across the eras, including a number of restored classics and incredible race bikes. Enthusiasts will attend in abundance, and trade stalls will be set up for any bikers to get the parts, advice or contacts he or she requires.

23-25 March, The Practical Classics Classic Car and Restoration Show 2018 NEC Birmingham

As the UK’s fastest growing classic car event, The Practical Classics Classic Car and Restoration Show attracts over 25,000 motoring enthusiasts each year, as well as an array of trade stands, entertainment, project cars and restoration demonstrations. This year, the Triumph Dolomite Club will be taking on a special rescue challenge, a rare Saab 92 prototype will make its UK debut, and some surprise motoring celebrities will be on hand to interact with guests and take part in fun and exhilarating challenges.

If you’d like to purchase a new outfit for one of these events or need to restore or work on part of your car before attending, you can view a range of clothing, parts, electricals and maintenance essentials on our website.

Mothers Day Motoring Gifts

It’s almost Mothers Day, and we have the perfect selection of affordable gifts for all classic-motoring Mums out there. From sleek country clothing to practical classic car essentials, this list should give you plenty of inspiration in time for the big day.

Neoprene Sligo Wellingtons by Jack Murphy

If your Mum can’t get enough of the outdoors, she’ll love this pair of robust neoprene waterproof wellies from Jack Murphy. Strong, warm and highly flexible, they’re designed to stand up to not only the elements but also to the test of time. £50

Beth Ladies’ Tweed Jacket by Jack Murphy

This beautiful classic equestrian styled ladies tweed jacket features colour contrast lining, 100% Shetland wool and a velvet collar. Perfect for the sophisticated country lady. £80 (down from £145.82)

Morgan Plate

Painted by Richard Wade, this creative, vibrant Morgan plate is perfect for any Morgan owning Mum this Mothers Day! £11.40.

Austin Healey Mug

A simple yet effective Mothers Day gift. This Austin Healey mug will make a nice addition to any classic motorist’s collection. £5.50.

Stirling Moss Book

This fascinating 320 page book details the cars and adventures of Stirling Moss. A fantastic addition to any classic motorist’s bookshelf. £25

MG T Series in detail

Shell Pump Enamel Sign

Add a splash of motoring nostalgia to your garage wall with this fun and vibrant Shell Pump Enamel Sign! £10.80

Belstaff Tourist Trophy Waxed Jacket

The Belstaff Laddies Tourist Trophy Wax Jacket has real performance and quality, making it a very practical yet classic looking piece of kit. Ideal for any motoring enthusiast who likes to look her absolute best on the road. £437.50.

Autoglym The Collection Perfect Bodywork and Wheels

Get brilliant bodywork and wheels with the ultimate Autoglym gift set. Features Bodywork Shampoo Conditioner 325ml, Super Resin Polish 325ml, Extra Gloss Protection 325ml, Clean Wheels 500ml, Instant Tyre Dressing 500ml and Alloy Wheel Seal 450ml. £29.75.

Bilt-Hamber Auto-balm, High-Shine Polish That Stops Rust

Bilt-Hamber Auto-balm is a unique product providing protection and gloss to automotive paintwork and car bodywork.It’s brilliant at sealing capillary pores in paintwork and provides an anti-corrosion barrier to stone-chips and scratches on vehicle paintwork. Comes with a free washable applicator and buffing cloth.

The Collection Perfect Bodywork, Wheels & Interior, Autoglym

Get your wheels, bodywork and interior sparkling clean with this incredible Autoglym collection! It features 325ml Bodywork Shampoo Conditioner Super Resin Polish and Extra Gloss Protection, 500ml Clean Wheels, Fast Glass, Interior Shampoo, Instant Tyre Dressing and Vinyl Rubber Care and a 300ml Wheel Protector Spray.

Electric Drill Reversable 230 volt 1050 watt

This impressive and handy drill features variable speed control with a lock button, a powerful 1050 watt motor and two-speed synchronized gearbox. £127.58

Scottoil Touring Chain Oiling Kit

The Scottoiler Touring System consists of a High Capacity Reservoir and a Remote Metering Valve that fits neatly behind the number plate increasing system capacity over 060.700 by eight times. Also includes fittings to suit most bikes and 500ml Scottoil.

Ashtray for MGB 1972

An ashtray can give a classic vehicle an extra authentic flare, even if you’re a non smoker. This one in particular fits a MGB 1972 on. but can also be fitted to other cars. £27.60.

Of course, we have plenty of other classic motoring products we’re sure your motoring Mum would love this Mothers Day. Head over to our website now to view the full range.

Morgan Parts for Mofidication

This week we want to share with you some modifications that have been made to a customer’s +4, some of which we have completed, others the customer has finished himself. These modifications mostly relate to the added boot rack, sensors and sun visors, which you can see from photographs below.

Car Lenses: The red and amber lenses are replaced by clear lenses. 

Badge: The customer has replicated the original Morgan badge which is no longer produced. 

A Boot Rack is added. (You can purchase a boot rack for your classic vehicle on our website.) 

High level break light converted to clear from red

The Sun Visor has been modified by the customer so that the mirror does not need to be adjusted prior to the sun visor being lifted. (To view our range of sun visors, click here)