“It’s a joy to drive, and I aim to con­tinue us­ing it daily un­til the win­ter kicks in...”

Mini Magazine - - Minivan -

The cylin­der head gas­ket wasn’t the only com­po­nent to start com­plain­ing; the gear­box started to leak oil, en­cour­ag­ing Tom to re­move the unit be­fore re­plac­ing the seals and gas­kets. He also took the op­por­tu­nity to in­stall a new clutch, but that’s where the me­chan­i­cal up­dates end.

Sub­se­quent use of the van has been fault­free and has in­cluded a trip on the an­nual London to Brighton run and vis­its to sum­mer shows in­clud­ing the re­cent In­ter­na­tional Mini Meet­ing in Kent. Over­seas ad­ven­tures to meet with Mini en­thu­si­asts in main­land Europe have also been in plen­ti­ful sup­ply, and the van has de­servedly bagged show and shine awards at the Yard­ley Hast­ings Vin­tage Ve­hi­cle and the Sh­effield Mini Club show too.

Re sto plans

As any­body with a retro ride will at­test, long jour­neys can of­ten be dif­fi­cult to en­joy when you’re for­ever won­der­ing what’s go­ing on be­neath the bon­net of your clas­sic. Thank­fully, a smat­ter­ing of mi­nor in­te­rior up­dates that were ap­plied by one of the Mini­van’s pre­vi­ous own­ers have af­forded Tom peace of mind, and he cites the triple dial cen­tre dash and an ad­di­tional Smiths volt­age gauge as par­tic­u­larly help­ful.

Sim­i­larly, ex­te­rior mod­i­fi­ca­tions have been kept to a min­i­mum; a new coat of Snow­berry White, pol­ished hub­caps, re­lo­cated and re­placed door mir­rors, front over­rid­ers and painted rear bumpers are the only ev­i­dence of any tin­ker­ing ( un­less you count a vin­tage AA badge as mod­i­fi­ca­tion?!). Yet de­spite his Mini­van’s clean ap­pear­ance, Tom wants to im­prove upon its over­all con­di­tion by sub­ject­ing it to a bare shell restora­tion. “It’s a joy to drive, and I aim to con­tinue us­ing it each day un­til the win­ter snap kicks in. At that point, I’ll strip it in ad­vance of a full re­build be­fore treat­ing it to a fresh lick of paint. I’m

Rather than a sin­gle cen­tre dial, this van has ex­tra gauges for peace of mind whilst on the move.

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