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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Well I didn't know what to call the thread so that's what you've got haha ;O)

A retrospective look at my journey with Mini, starting ownership with my Classic I bought in 1996 new. I still have it, and don't use it.

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It is modified, and was developed over ten years I guess, into a twin carburetted 1310cc ~97hp missile haha.

It was tuned as an SPI, and one stage too far with a cam experiment made it like a rally car with no idle at all unless I removed the high lift roller rockers, so I made a tailored wiring harness for the engine, and converted it to twin SU's which is how it remains.

SPI pic followed by SU:

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I won't dwell on this car but it's my first Mini, bought when I was thirty, wow, hard to believe I kept it this long!

I used it for a few shows after I moved from Surrey to the Wirral which was in 1997. I bumped into some people, one of whom had an identical car, and they met up locally to where I was looking for a house. When I moved I went along and made some new friends. Why not, I knew nobody whatsoever, we moved here really due to the first wife's family, leaving mine down south.

Anyway, the car was pretty quick for what it was, 10 foot long and would drive straight over the end of the 110mph speedo, through the red bit after it and toward the bottom of the dial if the engine was fresh haha. This was in the end after the carb conversion removed the rev limiter. I didn't know it would, it was an accidental discovery haha.

The engine was built by D.S. Motorsport when the car had only 471 miles. Essentially this was blueprinting it, and some quality changes that made it just brilliant as far as I'm concerned. I have a ruck of stuff on the car, which now has 64,500 miles on it. It was last used for any significant journey back in 2005 when I drove it to Germany and did six laps of the Nurburgring!! After that it was stored in a barn for several years.

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My friend who helped me with storage, had a Paul Smith Mini, also from new stored in the next barn. He discovered a rat had got into his and eaten a couple of plastic things. This made me a little nervous as mine was in near to concours condition at one time so I moved it to our new house. This is it after a cold bath, just rinsed the dust off and let to dry, then stored it here since.

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I must have advertised this ten times with no serious interest, it wasn't cheap though, a bit like now, none of us recover outlay from tuning etc. The thing with this and what I wanted for it, was it's rarity as well as what it'd had done. This was the last registered I think, of only 200 cars made. 1500 similar looking cars were made for Japan, but nowhere else in the world. The Japanese cars are what you find on ebay etc. They differ somewhat, and some aren't the real thing at all.

For those interested..... this little car was actually already sold by Rover. People that wanted them had to apply at the dealers, who forwarded the applications to Rover Cars. Rover would decide who could have one. Weird right? It was to prevent speculators. It was the last limited edition Cooper ever to be made, and celebrated 35 years of the Mini Cooper, which in 1961 was also produced in Almond Green, with Porcelain Green leather inside.

I worked at a Rover dealer in Croydon, and to cut a long story short, got permission to buy this car which was a cancelled order originally due to go to a Rover dealers in Battersea. I bought it while the big boss was on holiday. He returned and hadn't known I'd been given the ok from my boss to buy it. The 'Guv' wanted me to take my deposit back and cancel the finance which I refused to do. And he sacked me!! I wasn't letting it go, I'd missed the 'Monte Carlo' edition previously.

There you are. This car is what started my interest in Mini. I can take it apart with my eyes shut I reckon, (a bit like my R53), actually only three people have ever driven it. It came in the top ten at Mini Magazine's 'Best Mini in In The Word' display at Silverstone for the Mini 40 show. The brass plaque they issued is still stuck on the bulkhead in the picture above haha. I have a briefcase of history on it, and the original spare keys unused, and the invoice etc. My wife thinks I should keep it.

So this was the beginning haha ;O)
 

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Bugger
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Love it, there was on of these parked near me when I live in Oxford, my house mate had the Paul Smith Edition which made our driveway look epic, my (new then) Cooper and her Classic.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
This is it before a bath haha, it spent over four years here in the end before my pal decided he was actually going to sell it. I handled the sale, all work, got it Mot'd etc. Gave it a really good clean, and iirc I got him £7.5k, this was a couple of years ago now. It would be worth more today. 27,000 miles it had, but it wasn't quite the condition mine was in because of where it had been kept, over a much longer period. Still it was very nice, and the new owner collects Ferrari's haha. The car went to t good home I hope.

Such a good colour, I think 1500 of these were made? Might be wrong there but still. Nice little car, shame it was a twin point, totally different vehicles after September 30th 1996. Front mounted radiator, Different engine block, very long 2.7:1 final drive, narrower seats, SRS! Side protection bars, plastic liners in rear side bins, then the wide arches and 13" wheels, horrible drive. Just a different car, but that's what had to be done I guess.

People can tune them more now than back then. At the time they got top speed in third!!

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I worked at a Rover dealer in Croydon, and to cut a long story short, got permission to buy this car which was a cancelled order originally due to go to a Rover dealers in Battersea. I bought it while the big boss was on holiday. He returned and hadn't known I'd been given the ok from my boss to buy it. The 'Guv' wanted me to take my deposit back and cancel the finance which I refused to do. And he sacked me!!

Can relate, my old boss almost convinced me to buy an R53 when I was at Fiat... he sacked me the day I wanted to put a deposit down after I won a bet I'd sell more than 20 cars to keep my job. :lol:

He might lurk on here now and then too so if you're watching, hi snakey cunt :tongue_smilie:


Other than that, what an awesome read! You should definitely keep it! Seems a shame to keep it locked up though. Even a hundred miles a year would do!
 

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Discussion Starter #5

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Love that!!-I'm well into my classic minis,I sold my last one about four years ago (and regretted it so much since)
Up until I sold that one I had owned one in one form or another since I was 16-I'm 44 now lol
My last one was a monster with a MED 1380,twin 1.5 su's stage four head ,sc/cr box etc etc and was dynoed at 121 bhp
It was insanely fast.bit peaky for road use though lol.what a buzz driving it!!
 

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tk 084.jpg tk 083.jpg tk 081.jpg and scania 200.jpg
the silver foil in the grille in the first pic is covering up the oil cooler as it was wintertime and the oil used to take forever to get upto temp without being covered..
 

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Chop it
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I've had a few over many years, my favourite one so far was my Paul smith and the only one I wish I hadn't sold



Had several other classic minis over the years and for some reason I had a couple of RSP 1991 BRG as there was many to choose from

Currently rocking about in a 35LE which I took up to Stafford mini show last weekend and it was great :)

 

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Monte Carlo owner over here :thumbup1: I believe only 40 made in black.







Currently sat in our garage, waiting for me to do a full restore on it ::getcoat::
 

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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
I thought there were 50 black and 150 red.

I worked for a Rover dealer in Colindale way back when they were out, it was there I'd heard about them but wasn't told they were limited. When I got myself sorted I was told they'd gone, so pissed off, would have had a red one, just looked right with the seats, anniversary of Hopkirk rally success 30 years prior.

These and the 35th Anniversary are the only ones I really liked. I know people rave also over the earlier RSP at the re-introduction of the Cooper in carb form but it wasn't as nice a car for me. There was a sweet spot of two years where the Rover Cooper had the sports seats with twin headrest supports that had the wood dash and the high performance engine and box which I think was in both the Monte and 35.

I don't know the final drive for certain in the Monte Carlo but am 'fairly' certain it may have been a 3.1:1 but it could have also had the 3.2:1 so perhaps when you take it apart do a crownwheel count or pull the rear cover if interested ;O) The 3.2:1 diff and correct speedo drive gears have the potential to be easily lost with gearbox changes/reconditioning with owners unaware they were a special box.

I bought my 3.44:1 final drive from John Cooper Garages. I still have their period upgrade catalogues which showed the upgrade 'Si' kits available for our cars. I was to have installed a kit from them after a meeting with them, if I recall Tony Franks and Mike Cooper, as they generally only ever installed the kits themselves. Having gone there and discussed it they agreed to supply us at Tristar Croydon, the kit to install ourselves for my car.

It never turned out this way though. My car ended up having a brand new engine supplied which was transported on a crate for D.S. Motorsport. Some friends at Wimbledon Automatics I remember, used to race, and they recommended I consider this guy called Derek Scarrow. He built championship winning engines for Formula Ford, Formula First, Formula 2000, and also built the engines for school cars for Silverstone circuit. He went on to build winning engines for Formula Malaysia iirc, and then on to Graham Hathaway Racing. Fantastic guy who I spent a fair amount of time with over some years, and one of the three people that drove my car. He wasn't slow haha.

Derek was also a champion Auto Cross driver in the 70's. My car was tuned by Peter 'God' Baldwin after completion, and ever since for rolling road work. Last set up in 2005. Peter is a legend and such a nice bloke who will 'find' power. I ended up doing work with him on the tuning days, not necessarily on my own car. I remember standing on the rear chassis leg of a GT40 replica at full chat adjusting the timing by leaning over the motor next to the biggest rear wheels spinning up at massive speeds, moving the distributor. Epic. The noise was just insane haha. Memories.

It sounds a bit daft saying a high power engine but the Rover microfiches at the time listed the 10.3:1 engine with codes EJ66 a high performance engine, but also a 'heavy duty' gearbox which on the Anniversary was a 3.2:1 and I have mine still with the correct speedo gears in a box.

I also have all the original displaced parts from 471 miles, the shocks, rocker cover, cam, cam sprockets and chain, big end and main shells, oil pick up, rockers (from a bit later as with the shocks), complete original exhaust, air filter and air cleaner assembly, catalyst too!

My car spec was based on the John Cooper Garages 'Grand Prix' kit which was the only kit they did at that time for the Spi which involved a camshaft change, but also used a Webber Alpha fuelling system with a piggy back style ECU mounted beneath the drivers seat. They withdrew this kit due to fuelling issues and the MOT requirements. The interior was a little different with ruched leather on the door cards and alloy door furniture. Mine didn't have this but the engine was along the same lines but made more power without the Webber Alpha kit.

After my car was finished and run in, retuned in Cambridge where Peter Baldwin was based at Marshalls Ford, I went to JCG and discussed the car further as they'd asked me to show them how we got the performance, and I'd said they could have a look. I met John Cooper, Mike Cooper too, and after a chat about the car they gave me the light bar which is currently fitted to the front.

The 35th Anniversary, as with the Monte Carlo, all had four lights. The lights are two fog lights on the outside, and two long range spot lights on the inside. The long range lights are ineffective as the bracket forces the back of the lamp against the grille and it results in a beam on the road in front of the car. John Cooper Garages designed for the Cooper 'Grand Prix', a sturdy light bar that allowed the centre long range lamps to be mounted slightly forward of the grille so they could be angled correctly and work as intended, and this is a signature item on the Grand Prix model. So it is symbolic on my car, as it was not possible to buy this as a separate item being only part of the kit when installed by them. Silly now perhaps, but that is how I got it, and it's still there, and it makes all the difference!

The engine changes were along the lines of the above retained parts mentioned, but included a Kent development camshaft, (this was before anything they released for the Spi Mini), heavy duty Vandervell bearings, revised oil pressure, block corrected, blueprinted engine, all galleries cleaned and swarf removed (mad but often the engines were contaminated), duplex Vernier adjustable timing gears, modified backplate and cover, Bryan Slark cylinder head, compression ratio set, burette checked and adjusted combustion chambers (cc'd), central oil pick up, 3.44:1 final drive and speedo gears, Ramair rampipe, K&N air filter element, later to be a Ramair quick release foam filter on baseplate, modified fuel pressure, later via an FSE valve, and high lift 1.5:1 Titan full roller rockers.

That covered most of it, then Koni adjustable dampers, shimmed rear trailing arms for toe, adjustable rear camber brackets and customised geometry. Now there are a total of four Bryan Slark cylinder heads. Oh, it also had a Janspeed LCB with a catback in mild steel with rolled tailpipe but this later was a one off Janspeed stainless catback with decat pipe and decat silencer custom made, and with a silenced tailpipe. This is still the current exhaust. I went to Janspeed with an issue and they made this for me ;O) A similar system was made for John Cooper garages but only in mild steel.

I think that's enough on the 35. It was first registered with this plate too. It was to be P808RGJ but the entitlement came on the same day as registration on 09/09/1996, and just caught the admin before taxing it. So now the car won't show up as having a cherished transfer on HPI as it had the number from day one. Daft stuff haha. All these cars had to be registered by 30/09/1996 or returned to Rover Cars for pre reg.

Sorry it's long, but for the few that could be interested that's some of the story haha.

I might have some other pics somewhere, but on to the New Minis.....................................................................................................
 

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I had a school trip to Longbridge back in I think 1996-7 had a full tour of the mini assembly line, really interesting to see how they were made and the annoyance of the workers when there were cars with white roofs!
 

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Lovely looking car - are you still trying to sell it or is something you think you'll keep hold of now? It must hold a good deal of sentimental value?

Looking forward to the update with the newer cars!
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Don't know about it's future with me for definite.

It does hold a value yes, the car my girls were transported in when they were little too, so they like it now grown up, the eldest thinks she'd like it, but no, I've seen the state of girls cars thanks, haha.

It has some other new spares I remembered yesterday, a full new body harness, engine harness, gearbox casing, flywheel housing and cover, camshafts, gaskets and stuff, front discs, a starter I think, a couple of alternators, yes all new haha, a left wing, or two? A rear valance and a driver door skin, all Rover stuff.

If I ever sell it, I would have to sell as all or nothing. Nobody realistically, would have the budget I suspect. The imports are around 8 or 9k and perhaps in better condition I don't know. So most would be happy with one of them. I'm pretty sure that there won't be any of these left now in the hands of the original owner like this is. Some people who would cherish a car like this, would be made up to be the second owner after all this time I expect.

Me at the Nordschleife 2005

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Discussion Starter #14
so after a long ownership of the 'real' Mini, eventually I bought another also new, the very last before the few silver roof and seat efforts, which was a short journey and I don't think I even have pics. The reg was WxxCDA, this was with full black leather and it was in stunning Tahiti Blue, I thought that was it, I would have no need for another car ever, expecting at least one of the to always be on the road haha.

one day though, my ex wife while taking the girls to primary school, apparently turning round and shouting at them for fighting, saying they'll cause an accident one day, caused an accident by not looking in front of her, not far from the school, and successfully pushed the car in front of her, into the car in front of that. Thankfully the girls were ok. It wasn't the first time she'd smashed a car up in the same style, the previous one was pressing the wrong pedal while over 30 weeks pregnant and royally fucked the front of our Montego Estate on the way to Weybridge in Surrey, not far from home.

Anyway, the blue Mini was a mess, only six day after collecting it from having warranty paint rectification, I think I only actually saw it briefly. I can't remember why she was even in it, probably that I was doing something to hers. The impact was all centre and n/s, snapping the starter in half at the cast bracket for the solenoid, all the spots etc. The passenger door wouldn't open! It was actually fucked. Well done Catherine. So........... another job for me, was to have a look at it, stripped it all for access, and if you go back to the very first post, you'll discover the most vital tool used in the repair of this little car.

I had a really good think about the direction of impact, and could see what had moved. I didn't need to remove the engine, but pulled out the light bowl on the left, and removed the dash. I took out all the air ducting and went and bought a four ton porta power, plus a dolly set, then proceeded to thread my towing cable through the whole front corner of the Mini. The towing cable is made out of the same cable that lifts garage doors, like in fire stations etc, only narrow, but bolted and crimped into loops for sprung latches at each end. Great thing it is. Still have it! Few kinks in it now over 25 years on.

Now the cable was through the car, imagine if you look back up that drive to the tree across the road directly behind the green Mini? Well to the left was only one house my side of the road, and I lived in a cul de sac. There was access to a garage each side of the road for houses that fronted the main road, and I just checked they weren't going out anywhere for a bit, and turned the road into Seany's bodyshop!! Haha ;O)

Now I'd taken over the road, I aligned the sad looking car, and put the porta power together and into a strategic position, then wrapped the cable that was through the left corner, around the tree so the tree became the jig arm. Using stands at the ready, I then adjusted the precise angle of trajectory haha, and proceeded to load the road jig with the weight of the car, complete with seats in etc. Essentially the entire back end was in the air, but I placed the stands under certain areas, and actually measured some stuff, all around, and believe it or not, once the car settles into the tug, I went and made a brew! The hard part followed which essentially involved much measuring and checking things, as if it moved too much I guess I'd have had to crash it again to get it back haha. Anyway, with just a couple of fingers tucked into the gutter rail, I could add weight at the side or rear corners, and with use of the jack make some small adjustments, and eventually pulled the car like this until the bonnet aligned again and in particular, the door would 'click' shut with a simple press, and there was a good a panel gap.

While the car was under tension, of course I also had to dolly all the previously stripped out inner wing, headlamp bowl, wing, front panel, and slam panel. I did the lot with no steelwork whatsoever and can remember it all too clearly. I was on of the most bonkers attempts at a repair I'd done to date, actually it wasn't but you don't want to know about the others haha. So fortunate I had the bodyshop (road) to myself, I jacked the car up in each corner, loading the shell and went through the process until no matter what I did with it the car returned to a neutral tension with the door shut perfectly aligned, with the odd dolly session here or there to focus on the alignment up front.

At the time I'd put the car on finance and it owed me about 7.6k in total. I'd painted it in shit cold weather to get some colour over the dollied and cracked up painted areas, and even took it to a Mini show at Ellesmere Port Boat Museum haha, it looked ok from a distance, but at that time I didn't know people near to the house to paint it properly which it deserved, and I also couldn't stand the fact it had been damaged when only weeks old, so advertised it and sold it to trade for what I'd paid for it. Pretty much all it cost me was some petrol and a porta power, some patience and a dolly set my ex wife was lucky not to have embedded in her gobshite skull but there you are, when suitably distracted the anger fades away eh ;O/

Shame there are no pictures I can find, plenty on the web, and no doubt the car is in ownership with the owner having no idea. The trader knew it had had a bump but that was something he took care of. There're worse out there, but this was despite the ingenuity involved in my methods, repaired very accurately I just didn't finish it. Shame, I may have changed my mind but doubt it. It was a full Cooper Sport, not a Sport pack which was the same thing but those were an altered Cooper, where the full Sport was a built car, not many know that and don't give a toss as long as they have one outside. I worked for Rover so knew what was what back then. Still, not a patch on the green car above!!

Next, to the 'other' Mini's ;O)
 

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Discussion Starter #15
After a few years of hating the concept of the BMW Mini, and having spent many hours and days with the classic Mini crowd at shows or events and pubs, the world turned a few times, and we moved here, and in 2011 my new wife decided to sign up for a subsidised car scheme which would net her a Pepper White R56 Cooper diesel.

I still didn't like it, it was enormous!! That's not a Mini! (Well it isn't haha) more like a Maxi! I didn't go in it a lot but couldn't exactly avoid it, but you know what, despite it being a bit Spartan, and having Big Ben in the middle of the dash, vile radio controls and nasty pointy steering wheel switches that hurt your fingertips when you have to press the stupid button at the end and keep it pressed to see stuff, it actually was ok. More than that really because it pulled like a train! Second gear would actually simply wipe the floor with all sorts it was quite funny.

It was ace on fuel, I only went in it for a long run once, which was to the boat show in London's Docklands one year when we had some snow. We almost got wiped out by a Mercedes that the prick 'definitely not in control' has basically thrown in a direction and shut his eyes I think. There was a stranded car in the outside lane of the M1 on the way home, he was doing about 120 as is compulsory in a new Mercedes you most likely don't own, and a 40 ton truck was changing lanes into the middle, we had to back off as I think it was a lefty that possibly hadn't seen us, and the closing gap was what the Mercedes driver had thrown his car at and we could see in the mirrors his massive 1/2 mile snaking approaching us, and despite slowing and staring to clear left it would have been too late, and the bloke angels were obviously out waiting for him, because he got through a gap that wasn't very big at all, and resumed cock head driving in the outside lane haha.

So having spent a nice journey in the car I'd started to think differently, I know it's a R56 not 53 but the concept was what I was thinking differently about but still hated the interior and the size difference to the R53. Now I was used to the cars anyway in a short term kind of way because then I was a service manager of a BMW/Mini indy so drove them around the place for differing reasons, I just hadn't spent time in them, you know.

What happened next, was one customer who'd deposited keys with us for a broken Mini One which was left outside, asked us to take a look. Apparently the staff of the estate agents (yes it was one of those cars) refused to drive it as the power steering apparently failed but at random, and with several drivers not everyone agreed there was an issue, I think telling one person it was their imagination haha. Anyway, we had it in.

The long and short after doing a report on the car and pricing well overdue servicing etc was that the company were up for renewing it anyway, so my work stuck a bid in which as always was a piss take but nothing I could do about that I just worked there. The owners turned it down, planning to then buy a brand new car elsewhere, so we left it outside awaiting collection, until one of the company owners came to collect it. Then he was talking to me about the issues with it outside, and what was 'really' involved in keeping it going etc. The long and short of it he started talking about it's value and the offer like I was the one that made it so I explained whilst I empathised that that was someone else's field (although I knew all about it) but it was an opportunity to offer him more, as he wasn't selling it to my work that was for certain. So the next day I met in his office, and we dealt with the car exchange.

I was now the proud owner of a Mini One in Pepper White emblazoned with Bradshaw Farnham & Lea in red and blue all over the car, with random steering and needing much attention. My first BMW Mini!

I have no picture of the comedy appearance I'm afraid, but it kind of stuck out haha.

All you can see here after a very very long time peeling the stuff off, was what you can only just make out still on the roof, the day expired trying!! You get the idea though, and despite one or three little marks I liked it already!

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Discussion Starter #16
I forgot about this ;O)

Well, the earlier posts about the Cooper 35SE must have had an affect on me, as back in 2018 after posting I decided to make an effort to do some long overdue work on the little thing, and set about sourcing some new rubber suspension springs, as despite the car having razor sharp handling, almost every bump was enough to make me cringe and I was always worried about the sump height, pretty low as you can see haha:

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Many people advertise the springs for these saying one company or another made them originally, and when looking, one ad stood out as stating Dunlop categorically never ever made these parts for the Mini and if any were seen to be advertised as original Mini items they would not be, but the irony was they were Dunlop parts fitted at the factory, which I could see once removed:

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My aim became (in 2018) to go for the London to Brighton Mini Run. My new wife had always liked my Mini's, I'm fairly fortunate she tolerates my vehicle activities I guess, although were she to not be we simply wouldn't be together, anyway I asked her if she'd like to do the run and she was really up for it so I got the little car running and evaluated it generally. I did know it had an engine issue left over form the Ring trip in 2005 but for the few miles since I'd left it, actually preferring to sell it on with all Mini parts and be done with the Classic Mini experience, I'd had heaps of fun and a rollercoaster of an ownership experience which I think I was happy to move on from. Anyway, I'd kept it, silly offers etc meant I'd said it was going to sit in storage which is exactly what I did, in a fashion, now faced with making some decisions in preparation for the 2018 L2B.

The problem it had was that by the time we'd got to Spa I had a ticking rocker, so me being me I set about jacking up the right front corner in a Piazza type area while we'd stopped for lunch, and checked the tappets out of curiosity given the engine had just been rebuilt for this excursion. I found No.2 inlet loose which hadn't worked loose so I had a lifter or lobe issue I was now aware of. It wasn't likely to stop the car and we went about the rest of the journey happily after stuffing ourselves (or myself haha).

When we'd got to the Hotel I could hear slight noise again so the next morning before heading to the track I rechecked the clearance and tweaked stuff as is my inimitable way. We went on to enjoy 6 crazy laps, two of which my other half sat in for which was actually pretty brave of her because I don't hang about haha, so with our helmets only to protect us in what was no doubt the most lethal car there in terms of safety, I drove around taking up 'all' of the track width drifting across out of corners and driving the speedo needle clean off the edge of the clock in places and being all billy big balls down Fox Hole braking after the dip with just feet to go to the next turn yet still to shed serious pace (considering the car guys, it is what it is) but making it work for me, and doing it all significantly quicker on my own for four laps more, I can tell you I was trembling with adrenaline once back to the car park, and melting from the heat in this little 10ft tin box! For any of you reading this that haven't done it, this experience really is something you need to do at least once in your lives. Just maybe not in a car like this, with stock brakes!

This is me not dwelling on this car as stated earlier ;O)

Writing about it so much comes flooding back. Even passing my pal in his 964 Turbo in Belgium watching him do a double take as I passed at about the fastest this car has ever gone, and I know it calculates to something like a genuine 115.6mph @7k or some such figure, which we all know with speedo errors reads like 120 odd, but this was faster at nearer 7.5k and this Mini was singing! (or screaming). It felt as light as a feather, taking so much attention to focus on stuff, noises and what if etc, but the noise was just ace, it might have been a bit more than 7.5k but I didn't really want to look, crazy crazy stuff, he couldn't believe it, seeing the speed he was doing in his car already in motorway traffic and this green Mini of 46 year design comes sailing past with lets face it, zero chance of stopping for anything less than a mile ahead haha, totally mad, and I didn't get shouted at by my other half of four years either, amazing haha.

Anyway, all in the past sadly. What I had to do is decide whether to build an engine to a deadline, what spec to, or just find one, which is what I decided to do, knowing I could swap the head and rockers from mine and have a little more performance and perhaps retain the twin carb's. Now, these little motors are going for a grand pretty easily but I wanted something very specific, it had to be from a later 95/96 car but I expected I'd be making a compromise, I won't bother telling you why or what I was looking for but I found a lump on the east coast for about a grand, built up and apparently ready to drop in. A very long day later and it was at home, met more nice people as is the Mini way, but on the way back I was giving thought to something the guy had said which did bother me to be honest which with more time would have meant I wouldn't have bought it at all, and I was a bit pissed off. I got it home and set about removing the performance engine knowing I could try but most likely would be better off not rebuilding for this trip. It's no big deal swapping engines later if I want.

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I feel like I may have heard some of these stories before... :laugh:

Even so, I can't wait for the next episode!
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Thought I'd dig this up and find some more pics....

After recommissioning of the green beastie, it looked a bit high, they soon settle. It had a bit of a clean up, pads and discs, rear shoes and wheel cylinders, some spray grease flung at it, looked ok I think, passed the MOT. It does have it's rust which is sad but nothing as bad as many of them, still a shame, my fault for letting it sit out for so long I guess but more so recently. Still, others that see it are very complimentary, it does look alright overall, and the paint from 'A' pillars back is still original outside so I guess doing ok at 24 this year. We were due to do the L2B again but that's been deferred to October for now.



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The red doesn't match I know, the Slark head is Mars Red, an old Audi colour, mounted onto the engine I bought as a temporary unit.

It looks like I might be fitting a cam into this now as I miss the performance a bit on the long run doing the L2B, at least the flexibility a cam gives. It will be one I first used that I call an EW01, not quite as hot as the last used in the other engine needing work, just nice on the road having reasonable torque to cruise about and pass quicker, although the head and SU's get it to 100+ and to 80+ quite quickly, the cam will have it doing all of that a bit quicker and a fairly easy 110 or so which is the end of the scale. It's actually based on an old high torque AutoX cam which was quite successful I was told, so it's just an experiment adapted for the SPi, not too dissimilar to the later produced MD274, which itself I think is not unlike the SW5 from Swiftune (if not the same).

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I'd forgotten the car ate an old deteriorated filter sock one day on the motorway 😂

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Ageing reasonably gracefully but still the tiny bits here and there mean a lot will have to be disturbed, a couple of bits at the bases of the window frames, fronts of sills, tiny bubbles in middle of scuttle, and front seams, rear of A panels, door bottoms on the inside, especially right but blistered outward on both anyway. Small to the eye really but not in repair how I'd want it. Like I say people love it and it's better than many that haven't been painted already or welded. The best bit is the boot and floor overall, the boot is still lovely, as are the rear quarters and roof. The boot and the engine bay I had painted very early on, many have the need for boot floors which is all big work. I think this is all stuff for a next owner though. I think after next year it can go if not before, but the price will mean I still have it at 35 years no doubt haha. I should use it more. I might tax it for June, the trouble is I don't want to have it at the front on the drive, so it's always boxed in and I'd have to move stuff to use it, which to be fair is largely why I don't.
 
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