Healey paint and MG snag list
This month has been a major milestone on the Healey 3000 front, as I’ve finished all the welding and she is off to the paint shop. I had a long list of little fiddly jobs that needed doing after all the wings and shrouds had been removed. However, after researching pictures online, I realised I didn’t have any battery brackets in place. This omission was easily missed, as these had disappeared over time it was a a lucky catch. Welding them in post paint would have been a nightmare.
Another little job was modifying the bulkhead triangulation to the configuration of a 3000 MkIII, which was made by a simple cut using the plasma cutter following a template off a friend’s car before welded in a new flange. This profile on the later cars was there to clear the larger two-inch carbs on full engine rock and as the car will be running the same larger carbs, I thought it might be a good idea to make the same modification.
I suppose this was another good catch and again, could have been a messy one to resolve after painting or with the engine in place. Having never owned a complete big Healey, I’ve been pretty diligent checking through pictures online but am still worried something may have been missed but there’s not a lot I can do about it now.
The car was loaded up onto a trailer one fine Saturday morning and delivered to the paint shop with a boot full of panels and other bits. I’ll be supplying the chrome work soon and this will give the painter a template to work to and ensure they all fit. I’ve done this because of a mini disaster on a car I restored once where the headlights didn’t fit – a mistake I definitely won’t repeat!
With that milestone reached, I turned my attention to some maintenance work. The charging system of my dad’s Sprite seemed a little unhappy and was staring to become unreliable. Rather than persevere with the standard fit dynamo and electro-mechanical
I’ve been pretty diligent checking through pictures online but am still worried something may have been missed
regulator, I decided to go for an alternator conversion. A number of companies are now offering cheaper alternatives to alternators that look like dynamos and I even managed to find one with a tachometer drive for circa £150.
Some companies even offer a dummy regulator box with a fuse inside so the whole setup looks original but has a more powerful output, but I decided to have a go at converting the regulator myself. Armed with a wiring diagram and a large fuse holder, I de-populated the regulator and I soldered in the fuse to the right terminals and was delighted that it all worked perfectly and the car is charging nicely now. My dad had a little snag list detailing the issues that had crept in while using the car, so I attended to a few other little jobs, such as aligning the bonnet catches and after that off she went back to my dad to enjoy.
On the MGB front I had also built up a little list of jobs, one of which was a plug, lead and distributor cap change. There was nothing indicating they needed changing but they did looked a bit ropey, with one lead being different to the others. A simple but satisfy job and I will keep the old leads and cap in the car as emergency spares.
One area that did need attention on the MG was the starter solenoid. It had become very unreliable off the key but thankfully the motor has a manual button that when pushed will turn the engine over. However, it was getting a bit tiresome popping the bonnet to start the car, so I purchased and fitted a new solenoid to sort the problem out once and for all.
Some further preventative maintenance was to change the fuel lines. Having grown up with Volkswagens where leaks out back can’t be smelt until it’s too late, I’m in the habit of changing these regularly. These were a simple replacement alongside a new fuel filter just in case!
So all in all a busy month once again and now there’s some space in the garage to start taking a look at the E-Type but more about that next month.
Off to paint
The Healey’s bulkhead needed modifying to clear the carbs.
Fitting a new solenoid cured a starting problem on the MGB.
Swapping the MG’s dodgy leads was a job that needed doing.
Fusing the Sprite’s modified regulator turned out to be an easy fix.
My MGB needed a few jobs sorting out to get it running smoothly.