Tiger Tales 6……

Work on the Tiger’s bodyshell is progressing at quite a rapid pace now – the shell, having been tipped on its side and the underside having been blasted, has now been carefully seam sealed and following primer, several coats of black have been applied. Meanwhile, in another part of the paintshop, the detached parts – doors, bonnet, boot lid etc have been turned from bare metal to gleaming Fiat Rosso, via primer and copious amounts of rubbing down!

Whilst it seems that the car has been taken entirely back to bare metal and totally repainted, this is in fact far from the case. Whilst the exterior paint finish was none original and not the correct colour, the interior of both the passenger compartment and boot were correct and here the original paint has been retained.

In the mechanical and fittings department,  a box of items has been delivered to us here at HVC for sorting out – ie 1 Smiths heater blower, which currently has a seized motor, a double ended SU fuel pump which will be rebuilt to keep as a spare and an original Ford starter motor which will be swapped for one of our lightweight Powerlite items.

Tiger Tales 5……

Given the holiday period and spells of decidedly cold weather, there has not been a lot to report recently, however, steps have been taken in preparing the shell for paint, in that having stripped the topside, the shell has been rolled over to allow the underside to be blasted to free it of years of underseal and other sticky nastiness so that the main structure can be inspected.

Underside of the shell being blasted free from all the old paint and underseal

Underside of the shell being blasted free from all the old paint and underseal

The underside now clear of paint

The underside now clear of paint

Meanwhile, the parts of the doors that had shown up to be rather unpleasant (mostly the leading edge of the passenger door – this car is LHD don’t forget) have now been attended to with new metal being let in where necessary.

Doors have been attended to and made sound

Doors have been attended to and made sound

Door now finished and ready for paint

Door now finished and ready for paint

Top tips to keep your car on the road this winter

So apparently according to the met office, the temperature is set to plummet. It’s a common fact that the number of breakdowns nearly doubles during particularly cold spells, as Jeremy Holden, Director of Holden Classic & Vintage said “Winter conditions put extra strain on your car, and just a few minutes spent on some simple checks now can save a lot of trouble later. Battery failures are the commonest single cause of winter breakdowns. If the car is increasingly hard to start and the engine slow to turn on the starter motor, especially first thing in the morning, chances are the battery is on the way out.”

Here at Holden, we thought we would share with you some of our top tips, to not only save you money, but help protect you and your car during the nippy spell.

  • Make sure the antifreeze concentration in the cooling system is adequate – if there has been a leak and you’ve been topping up with plain water it may not be.

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  • Use a screen wash additive with antifreeze properties (not engine antifreeze). If the liquid in the washer bottle freezes it may split the reservoir or damage the pump.


  • Warm (not boiling!) water is OK for defrosting windows, but watch where it runs – it could form an ice slick when it freezes.
  • Make things easier for the battery by not switching on headlights, heater blower or heated rear window until the engine is running. Similarly, switch off lights etc before stopping the engine. Switch off the heated rear window as soon as the screen is clear.
  • Consider fitting a set of winter tyres. They really do make a difference. Some tyre retailers will store the summer tyres for you in winter, and vice versa.
  • There’s no point in keeping lock de-icer inside the car. Frozen door locks can sometimes be freed by blowing into them – but be careful not to get your lips stuck to the car!
  • Winter grade diesel can cope with temperatures down to -15º C. If lower temperatures are expected, use an anti-waxing additive in the fuel tank
  • When parking overnight in freezing conditions, leave the car in gear and the handbrake off if it is safe to do so. This will prevent the handbrake freezing in the ‘on’ position.
  • Stop wiper blades freezing to the screen by propping them up on slices cut from a cork when you park for the night.
  • Don’t get caught short in the snow – carry a set of snow socks or snow chains in your boot to set your mind at ease.




We also recommend you carry these other items just in case:

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What we got up to over Christmas….

Soap Box Racing –

Unfortunately Jeremy did not get his wagon ready in time to enter the Soap Box racing on Boxing Day as it was only on Christmas Eve that he became aware of the mandatory roll bar rule. As you can imagine, this made things a little tight for time so it was decided that his entry could wait for next year. However he did attend the event as a spectator which by the sounds of things was very entertaining.

40,000 spectators witnessed the Red Bull Soapbox downhill race in Seattle USA. A remarkable number of people considering what looked to be a rather tame event.

However this could not be said for what took place on a hill top outside a friendly pub in deepest Herefordshire, which hosted the 17th annual Soap box race! Toilets, pianos, beer barrels and the trunks of oak trees complete with Austin Mini running gear nailed to it, have all been used over the years.
This year saw the welcome return of a Victorian bath with half a motorcycle grafted on the front which proceeded to be the winner of the beer barrel jump.Barrel Jumping

This year’s winner was Alex Mcguffie with a new record of 33.5 seconds, a truly commendable achievement. In Second Place were Josh Bateman & Tony Morris (Also winners of the barrel jumping) and in third place was David Lewis.

Just 400 people witnessed this anything but tame event!

Soap Box Soap Box1


New Years Meet at Shelsley-

Adam & family made a slightly damp and muddy trip in the Austin to Shelsley via some of the narrow lanes of Worcestershire, where they found a large gathering of familiar faces all with a similar goal – that of walking off the excesses of the previous week’s festivities by ascending the famous hill on foot. Most managed it – even the youngsters – others had assistance in the form of their four-legged friends (perhaps the only time of the year when it is possible to take a dog to a motorsport venue).

Shelsley NYD

Following an excess of exercise, many discussions took place as to which Public House was a most suitable stopping off point on the way home!!

New Years Day VSCC at The Royal Oak, Much Marcle-

A surprisingly warm New Year’s Day saw a bumper turn out of 130 pre-war cars and bikes in The Royal Oak’s car park. There were many Choice Classics on the verges and 100s of moderns too.

New Years Day VSCC meet

The self – judging Concours for the car which the majority would like to take home other than their own was won by Charles Trevelyan in his Type 37A Bugatti, followed by Rick Mee’s 2 litre Lagonda, with chaser Harry Bowers in his Amilcar.

This meeting was also the first official outing of Pearl the Levison/McManama marriage of a Singer chassis and Riley power! After loads of hard work and dedication it was good to see Pearl out and about – hopefully you will be seeing more of her on the trialing hills too!

New Years Day Car & Hunt 2

Although a great day was had by most, unfortunately this beautiful 30/98 was involved in an accident at the Much Marcle cross roads just before reaching the meet.  Our condolences go out to the driver and passenger, we are glad you are both ok and hope the 30/98 makes a speedy recovery.

New Years Day Crash 3098

Happy New Year, Charlotte