New Zealand Classic Car - - Automobilia -

s well as be­ing a long-time Mini fa­natic, Iain Ayre is also a com­mit­ted builder of one-off cars — his book The Kit Car Man­ual (Haynes), is highly rec­om­mended to any­one con­sid­er­ing the home con­struc­tion of a kit car.

Inevitably, some of Ayre’s com­po­nent­car ex­per­tise rubs off on this new book — so, along with loads of prac­ti­cal guid­ance re­gard­ing Mini restora­tion, the reader will also find sec­tions of­fer­ing ad­vice on mod­ern up­grades and re­pow­ers. Some of the more rad­i­cal con­ver­sions de­tailed in­volve rear-wheel drive and Honda VTEC en­gines.

How­ever, the real meat of this book is the au­thor’s ex­pert cov­er­age of all aspects in­volved with restor­ing a Mini and all the skills re­quired to han­dle that task. As such, the book looks at ev­ery­thing from se­lect­ing the right tools, eval­u­at­ing and check­ing a po­ten­tial pro­ject car to bodywork re­pair, in­te­rior restora­tion, and the re­fur­bish­ment of all elec­tri­cal and me­chan­i­cal com­po­nents.

Many books of this type, while of­fer­ing a boot-full of prac­ti­cal ad­vice and guid­ance, of­ten end up be­ing as en­joy­able to read as your granny’s shop­ping list — how­ever, Ayre’s dry sense of hu­mour is present through­out, and I even found my­self laugh­ing out loud as I ab­sorbed one or two of his em­i­nently valu­able lessons on Mini restora­tion.

If you’re plan­ning to tackle a Mini restora­tion — or, God for­bid, are think­ing of pep­ping up your knack­ered old 1275GT by bolt­ing in a DOHC Ja­panese V6 — then this is the book for you.

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