Triumph 2500 PI
The mighty Triumph’s future hangs in the balance…
OWNED SINCE December 2017 MILEAGE SINCE LAST REPORT Not much TOTAL MILEAGE 69,174 LATEST COSTS £Pending ’I reversed it out onto the road, hauled on the wheel and… it was no better’
Iwon’t often get up at 8am on a Saturday for anyone or anything, but getting the PI’s sticky steering attended to was of paramount importance if I was ever going to get it back on the road. And I reckoned that it would get to the garage just around the corner from our new home without any dramas.
Getting it started from cold can be a bit involved – it almost always fires after a couple of churns on the starter, but is often reluctant to idle smoothly until it’s warmed through – but on this occasion, it settled immediately to a contended sewing machine thrum.
Impressed, I slotted the gear shifter into reverse, waited for the usual small lurch and then took my foot off the brake pedal, ready to thread it out of its resting place next to my MGF. Only, it just sat there. Frowning, I doublechecked that the handbrake was off (I always leave the handbrake off on my old cars) and discovered that it was indeed stuck – in the down position. Curiouser and curiouser.
Back into park, then back into reverse and a bit more gas. The revs climbed and the car rose on its rear suspension, but still no dice in terms of actual movement. Oh, for heaven’s sake – my garage appointment was less than ten minutes away, and the brakes were stuck on.
The usual course of action in this situation is to gently rock the car back and forth on the clutch until they release, but my problems here were two-fold – for one thing, it’s an auto, so I had less control, and for another, if the brakes suddenly let go, I’d clobber either the wooden post directly in front of me, or the other one directly behind me.
And then the low fuel light started to flicker, just to add to the general fun and merriment.
It finally let go – gently, thank goodness – after a couple of minutes, and I gingerly made my way to the garage, where I got it up on a ramp and let the mechanic do his thing with the steering grease nipple. I then reversed it out on to the road, hauled on the wheel and… it was no better.
If that wasn’t bad enough, one particularly Herculean haul on the steering wheel caused the whole column to suddenly flop into my lap. I sat there in shocked disbelief for a few seconds before closer inspection revealed that a hitherto undiscovered metal steering column adjuster had somehow worked its way loose.
I’ll be honest, though – this was the straw that finally broke the camel’s back. I like the car – I really do – but I think it’s probably better suited to someone with more time, money and expertise than me. The fact that I’ve owned it for five months and driven it precisely twice strongly suggests that someone, somewhere is trying to tell me something.
Hall’s Garage in Morton has since fixed what turned out to be worn/ seized steering column UJs, so I think now might be the time for MGU and me to go our separate ways while the relationship is still amicable.
There’s still a Triumph 2000 or Rover P6 in my future, but I think I’ll be getting my classic car kicks from a pair of MG sports cars for now.
Could the PI’s sticky helm signal its departure to pastures new? Mysterious lever turns out to be the release mechanism for the rakeadjustable steering column.
Locked and loaded and ready for another trip to the garage.