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Martin Randle

Martin Randle's Car Collection sagas

Martin Randle's Car Collection sagas
Latest Entries-

A bit of DIY and a positive result


An accumulation of things

More overdrive

Not used to this

Confidence improving

Setting fire to PMW?

The heat is on

Looking for a knob

Working on it

Not sure about that!

Reluctant to start - but that's OK

30 minutes more


Not one bit of progress

Walk away

2000 home & UNJ dizzy!

Of TR7s

Putting off the inevitable

Parts arrival & carbs can be good

Diff-enitely time for an update

Progress on two fronts


At least one Triumph wants to play!

Certainly a problem!

A bit of DIY and a positive result

Having got PMW back I changed the oil and filter. The family business from the 60s through to the turn of the century was a country garage in Derbyshire and part of the nostalgia for me is that the first petrol company we were associated with was Gulf so for that and if my brother is reading this - here's the oil I used.

After this was completed UNJ was at the local garage for MOT and needed some more bits and pieces including new front strut inserts.

The battery had been getting low though as when I came to start the car recently it was very sluggish so I also knew it needed another one.

Thinking outside the box the battery on PMW had always started very well but I have not been happy because the terminals are the engine side of the battery and should actually be on the inner wing side.

So, I decided to get a new battery for PMW and then put it's old battery on to UNJ.

Battery that has always been on PMW with terminals on engine side
I then did a fair bit of research on an appropriate battery asking for advice etc and found an 096R battery would do just the job so ordered a Lucas branded one. Now this was something I liked because it was both black as batteries always were in  the 60s and also Lucas is a brand  associated with Triumph and many other British car companies.

Not only that but it's specs are well on top of the job -   70 AH, 680CCA, 4 years guarantee.

I did need a new j bolt and decided to get a new bracket too so that the old naff cut down version (done by a previous owner no doubt to get a wrong battery to fit). Here's how it all looks now.

posted by Martin Randle 30th April 2017 7:32pm gmt


I have recently decided to get work done on the cars and do less myself.

Different reasons in these two cases though.

PMW, the 2000 that didn't want to run properly.

Here I decided enough was enough with my limited availability in time and ability in skill so asked my local garage, Vicarage Motor Company of Barnoldswick to take a look to see if they could sort out the poor running.

Well, a couple of  carb gaskets, replacement split vacuum carb pipes but probably more importantly a replacement ballast rsistor and the car runs so much better. Not perfect yet but certainly pulls stongly up to 4000 revs and over testing of about 30 miles too so a big step forward.

Then there's UNJ, the TR7 DHC. As already reported this was much improved due to work done by TR7 specialists S&S Preparations but after this I spotted they had posted on facebook an almost brand new sports exhaust system and manifold. For the price of a brand new one supply only they fitted this nearly new one for me and I picked the car up on Saturday.

The car sounds GREAT and not only that but it goes even better now.

So, yes I am cheating on my old principles of doing work myself and my wallet is much lighter but I am very pleased with the results.

posted by Martin Randle 09th April 2017 6:50pm gmt

An accumulation of things

Over time my TR7 DHC UNJ has been a pretty much OK kind of car, starts well, drives OK and generally does what you want it to.

It's been round Europe and done lots of other touring events nearly always with the top down whatever the weather. One Club Triumph Welsh tour was particularly bad as I remember it.

There's always been a bad vibration through the steering wheel though at 55ish which I put down to wheel weights always being knocked off by the large brake calipers so wheel balancing is pretty much impossible.

The car has also had a tendency to run pretty well but then start to hesitate or not pull properly. More recently it's also lost coolant although I couldn't find out from where.

So what's the point of this update then? Well I put the car into S&S Preparations over winter for the coolant problem to be identified and fixed as well as them fit an electronic ignition kit I had bought many years ago but never fitted which I hoped would solve the hesitation problem.

In addition I asked Steve to give a general look over the car to make sure I wasn't spending money on a wreck (which I didn't think I was but it's always worth having a professional's view) and give me a list of other work that might need doing.

Well the coolant loss was tracked down quickly as a heater hose perished at the bottom where it entered the bulkhead so I could be excused for not seeing that.

The electronic ignition was fitted but wouldn't work so back to points etc.

I then authorised work on tracking down what the problem was with the "occasional" poor running and hesitation.

Well, first Steve at S&S found sediment in the carb fuel bowls (rather like my 2000 problems) so these were cleaned and an in line fuel filter fitted before the fuel pump (as I had done on my 2000). In addition various fuel hoses were split,deriororated as were the rubber carb mounts which would have contributed to air leaks and said poor running. These were all replaced, the carb mounts being replaced by alloy versions.

All of that didn't cure the misfire/hesitation though so back to the ignition side and onto the analyser which showed one of the cylinders kept "going down". Further investigation found a worn distributor so this was replaced with a good second hand one. Meanwhile the dizzy cap and rotor arm had been worn/scored because of the worn distributor.

In fact I had seen these problems before, back in July last year but hadn't realsied the full implications.

So new dizzy cap, rotor arm, condensor,points, 4 plugs and a plug lead were fitted.

Somehow my thought that fitting an electronic ignition kit might solve the problem looked a little sick by now.

On to other issues diagnosed after a check through the car.

Remember the "wheel imbalance" problem?

Well, the front off side wheel bearing was on it's last legs, the upper and lower steering joints gone and the steering column to bulkhead bush had fallen apart. Oops! Now, should I bother having these replaced? Didn't take long to say yes with such safety critical parts so that's what was done there.

What else? Well, a split steering rack gaitor seemed a minor "whilst you are about it "decision so that was replaced too.

Meanwhile the bushes in the gearbox remote had also all failed and the remote was resting on the rotating propshaft which isn't quite how Triumph intended so all those were replaced too.

We agreed to call a halt at this point with other "advisories" having to wait for another winter when my bank balance may have recovered a bit.

Thankfully though the car was really good to drive when I collected it pulling away under acceleration well, no judder through the steering column and the gear change really tight.

posted by Martin Randle 18th March 2017 5:00pm gmt

More overdrive

I didn't have much time today but did have enough time to use a borrowed 5/16 UNF die to rethread the gear lever (thanks Bryce for the loan of the die).

With that done I was able to fit another overdrive gearknob, but this one is like ones used in competition with a toggle switch. It fits very nicely and feels nice and solid. Next up is wiring it in.

posted by Martin Randle 11th February 2017 5:56pm gmt

Not used to this

I have bought a non overdrive gearlever and today I thought I would clean it up and out of curiosity see how it looked against the overdrive one n the car.

Using a rag and turps the new old stock gearlever cleaned up a treat but I knew there were some parts I would need so I referred to my parts book.  Well everything I needed looked like should be in place on the one already fitted as they didn't seem different where they locate so I decided to partly dismantle things to take a look.

Here's the assembly and yes it looks like everything should be able to be switched over. Well, having come this far I might as well check it out a bit more eh?

So, I undid the bolt at 6 o'clock in ths photo and removed it. Then there's nuts at 3 and 9 o'clock but if I remove them that would still leave studs in place surely so how would the metal cover come off?

Well, only one way to find out so I undid them and out came the studs too. Then the cover lifts off with an "inverted saucer" that holds a spring below it. With those out of the way the gearlever came out and I could compare with the non overdrive gearlever.

They looked exactly the same at the gearbox end so rather than describe the blow by blow of reassembly it was in the tradition of the Haynes manual a reversal of what I had just done and here's the "new" non overdrive gearlever in place.
Before fully replacing all the trim I then took the car for a test run and all is well with gear selection and how great it is to have a proper "knob" to get hold of!

Meanwhile the car ran well for a good 12 miles or so but then started to bog down and struggle again. I think this could easily be more fuel problems as on a light throttle it pulled quite well so next weekend it will be checking the fuel pump again.

posted by Martin Randle 21st January 2017 8:48pm gmt

Confidence improving

Having identified a problem with debris blocking the fuel pump a number of friends recommended not replacing the plastic inline fuel filter I had used with another one of the same type.

This being on the basis that they can collapse where the fuel pipe clamps up.

So, I followed advice from Colin Wake and fitted a filter from a V6 Vauxhall Vectra which should certainly cope with the fuel flow on a 2 litre carb fed Triumph. Here it is in place on PMW.

Don't be alarmed by the fluid on the bulkhead as I had just spilled some water whilst topping up the washer bottle.

PMW fired up no problem afterwards and having checked for fuel leaks (non found) I took the car on the extended test circuit and all appears well. That's 40 miles now with just a small amount of hesitation at the top end of the rev range and the overdrive working too :-)

Back home I left the car running with the bonnet up so that I could look over the engine. I just found one leak and that wasn't anything to do with the fuel pipes or filter, it was a small weep from a heater pipe fixed by nipping up the clamp.

I think the next job will probably be fitting the non overdrive gearlever and nob so that I can do away with the annoying overdrive version.

posted by Martin Randle 14th January 2017 4:44pm gmt

Setting fire to PMW?

That is a rag stuck into the petrol filler neck but not with the inention of setting fire to the car even if it has been proving a pain.

No, this is part of a plan following various dicussions and thoughts on how to get the car to run like it wants to actually drive somewhere.

It will now start OK and run happily on the drive but out on the road it doesn't want to accelerate at all and hesitates.

Like fuel starvation but using my saying of 95% of all fuel issues are actually on the ignition side I have been working my way through different possible causes.

One being a non standard cam which meant that putting a strobe light on the car showed the timing to be miles out from the standard marks.

I followed through advice from Andy Pearce and basically after doing all this, establishing true top dead centre, marking this up and then going back 8 degrees btdc from this the car was running in pretty much exactly the same place timing wise as before with the same level of non performance.

Talking this through at the Cheshire and Staffs meeting I was advised it sounded very much like a fuel problem. Well I was reluctant to go down what I expected to be a blind alley but then my mate Andy Flexney suggested that yes it might be.

So today I got the car up on axle stands and checked the fuel pipe all the way through from the tank to the engine bay just to check that during the wild boar incident it hadn't been flattened anywhere. That proved OK so I then got my airline out, disconnected the fuel pipe at the engine bay end and blew air back through it to the tank. This is where the rag comes in as Andy had told me of a time he did this and fuel was ejected out of the filler neck all over a wall! Not this time having been forewarned but I could certainly hear air being blown through the fuel line and into the tank.

Next I checked out the inline filter which I lways like to have fitted just before the fuel pump. There was certainly signs of gunge in there as can be seen in the photo so I removed it all together.
Now this was not fitted by me but by my local garage. I just have a suspicion that it might have been fitted the wrong way round too as the clean part is on the "inlet" side which is not where it should be if it had been fitted the way the arrow shows the flow should be.  If it was fitted the wrong way round then could that also cause a restriction? Mind you, it was OK all round the 10CR until the wild boar incident.

Not being content with this though I took the glass bowl off the top of the fuel pump to get at it's own filter and found quite alot of muck in there too as can be seen in the next photo. In fact it looks like a tea leaf strainer and not a fuel pump :-(

Using the airline I cleaned all this out too and cleaned the inside of the glass bowl as well before reassembling.

So that was the fuel side worked through but whilst the car was up on axle stands I did a few other jobs too like topping up the reconditioned diff  with gear oil, tidied up a few connections and rotated the tyres.

Now would all of this improve the way the car drove? Would it drive?

Well initially I was just glad it started and then didn't pump fuel all over the engine bay. Then I ventured out on to the roads and it seemed a bit unhappy initially but then it was cold and hadn't run properly for a while so I took it all with a pinch of salt and checked everything over after a couple of miles. This in itself was much better than recently so Idecided to give it another couple of miles which turned into 10.

There's still some hesitation but in general the car is so much better. It pulled up a fair hill at 2500rpm in overdrive top for example and in the last couple of miles I deliberately left in 4th at 30mph and it was pretty much OK.

In fact  it was not bad at all, no sign of overheating either and I don't know if you noticed but I quoted overdrive too - yes my new knob (!) and wiring seems to have done the trick and overdrive is working too.

I know when to take a few wins out of a day's work so I put the car away, the tools away and spent the afternoon watching Derby County win again. That's the best blog update in many a long time.

posted by Martin Randle 27th December 2016 6:51pm gmt

The heat is on

Returning to the overheating problem.
A good friend of mine, Mike Charlton, loaned me temperature gun that looks rather like a phazer ffrom the original Star Trek.

Well, armed with Mike Charlton's phazer I went out this afternoon to check what the temperature actually was  when the electric fan came on and then what it was in comparison to what the car's temp gauge said.

Running the car up to temperaure at tick over plus a few revs (strategically placed calibrated brick on accelerator pedal) the electric fan cut in way too soon, even the temp gauge had only just crept up above cold!

So I adjusted that and then with Mike's phazer I was monitoring the temp at the waterpump, thermostat housing approaching 70 degrees or so when the fan came on again so I adjusted it up again.

A little while later the temperature gauge was in the middle, using Mike's phazer temps were now around 85 to 90 and a couple of minutes after that the fan cut in at 2/3 of the temp gauge.

When it cut out the temp gauge was back down just under 1/2 way, in fact where you would want it to be

I am taking it that the thermostat opened, the fan controller cut the fan in at around 100 -110 and it cut off again at around 85-90. The car happily ran at 1100rpm from then on at normal temp on the temp gauge.

I don't know why all this should have happened really other than it's blooming cold out there under the carport right now but until today it would have run at 3/4 temp with the fan on all the time I haven't actually changed anything that I can see that would now mean it runs at a normal temperature but the loan of MIke's temp gun does mean I can rule out a dodgy temp gauge as this seems to be accurate.

Here's a pic of the temp at the waterpump/thermostat housing a couple of minutes after I had switched the engine off.

Next I'll work on the poor running after tips from Mr Shedtune but that can be another week as it's too cold for me out there

posted by Martin Randle 19th November 2016 2:34pm gmt

Looking for a knob

I have seen this all too often. The overdrive gearknob switch won't stay in place which is a real pain and of course means no overdrive.

I have decided on a completely different alternative. It's possible to fit an alloy gearknob with a toggle switch which is much more robust and retains the ability to easily flick the overdrive on and off whilst holding the gearstick.

I am going with a different approach though which is cheaper and whilst not as hands on as the above option should be fine with how I want to use the 2000, more of a cruiser than a sporting car.

Here is an overdive switch for a TR2 which I have used in the past on a Vitesse I owned. That's not the position for it by the way but was a good place to put it whilst I worked.

 Although it would be good there I want to keep the power outlet for satnavs etc so I looked for options.

I then thought about using the location for the dimmr dwitch on the dashboard as the dashboard lights are rubbish anyway and there's no need to dim them!

Now started another saga where the car decided to fight me.

I pulled the dashboard out and removed the dimmer swicth which wasn't easy but when I fitted the overdrive pull switch it didn't really work well as a solution due to the gap around the switch. During removal of the dimmer swicth though the connectors became disconnected from the back of it so when I wanted to replace it I needed to use a spare I had.

I needed to get a little bit more clearance though and had to disconnect the tripmeter cable from the speedometer. When putting this back I actually found it was broken at the speedo end  but I thought this wouldn't be a problem as I had a spare on the original 2000 speedo. The cable had actually broken with the plastic connections falling inside the speedo so the job became a bigger one.

OK I thought, I'll swap in the whole 2000 speedo but then realised it wouldn't match as it has chrome rings whilst all the other gauges have black rings because they are Pi ones. Then I remembered a brand new TC one I had bought as  a Rimmer Bros clearance item a few years back. That had a black ring and the trip doesn't use a cable as it's a push button through the front of the gauge. I fitted this although it has a top speed of 120mph instead of 140mph but who's kidding anyone the car will ever see 140!.

With the dashboard back in I could return to fitting the overdrive pull switch.

I put it where I had in mind right from the start, where Triumph fitted a pull switch for a rear screen heater. This is fine as I can re-use the hole for a rear screen heater switch which I will need in the future.

So, a bit of drilling and fitting resulted in this.

A Triumph part in a correct location in the car.

Now what I need though is a gearknob for a non overdive 2000, maybe a complete gearlever too but that's for another day.

posted by Martin Randle 30th October 2016 07:21am gmt

Working on it

Following advice from the Club Triumph forum I returned to PMW today.

I adjusted the Revotec fan controller down to minimum which meant that it would cut in at 70C. Here's what the temp gauge looked like then. Higher than would be expected which implies the gauge is over-reading.

Then I followed the instructions and turned the controller "up" until it went off. When it came back on the temp gauge looked like this.
That's where it stayed with the electric fan on all the time.

I checked to make sure the fan was blowing the correect way. It's mounted in front of the raadiator and I put some paper/card in front of it and it was nearly pulled into the fan so that's OK.

The temperature gauge stayed at this level all the time I went for a short run with the car but I didn't take it too far as it was struggling to get up a small rise in the road in second gear! The timing appears to be miles out using a timing gun  but when I tried to adjust it to something closer to where it should be the engine died.

Oh, and the overdrive switch on the gearknob came off again.

More things to ponder over.

posted by Martin Randle 22nd October 2016 5:18pm gmt

Not sure about that!

So today I got PMW started as the battery had been on charge.

I then took the car for a run to see if the overheating had been cured but had major problems after less than a mile. When I got the car home one of the heater pipes had come off letting all the coolant out so I had to fix that.

Next run of 8 miles on the test track was sort of OK as the car made it but continues to run with the temperature gauge at 3/4 and the electric fan on permanently. The new water pump hasn't improved things then.

In addition the car didn't run that well either, lacking power at times.

So, I think now it's over to Vicarage Motor Company for some professional help.

posted by Martin Randle 15th October 2016 4:08pm gmt

Reluctant to start - but that's OK

40 minutes this week on PMW.

All pipework reconnected, time taken to fit new hose clips where needed and refitting the Revotec sender for the elictric fan in line with a photo I took of Matt George's installation which looked that bit neater than mine.

Then refill with coolant and fire up PMW. But it wouldn't as it didn't turn over fast enough. I reckon all the time stood has lowered the charge in the battery which is fair enough especially as it's the one the car came when I bought it so must be a fair few years old now.

Mind you there didn't appear to be any leaks which is a good sign.

So, simply off with the battery and put it on charge for a week whilst I packed all the tools away and moved on to preparing for Club Triumph's Round Britain Reliability Ruun where I will be marshalling at Tebay next Saturday night (October 8th).

posted by Martin Randle 02nd October 2016 5:36pm gmt

30 minutes more

Well last weeks 20 minutes went OK, some progress made and I didn't get too stressed so this week I went for 30 minutes on PMW.

This seems to be working as I got the stainless steel return pipe back in place and was able to fit it to the water pump housing too, AMAZING!  I even got the waterpump housing bolted back up and the short hose on the end of the return pipe connected to the end of the inlet manifold pipework.

From there I remembered something my mate Bruce Garbutt said to me. The water pipework through the inlet manifold on his GT6 had been blocked which restricted the flow of water. Having fixed it the car warmed up quicker but then ran cooler because this circuit was now doing what it should.

As I was at this point I decided to flush through the inlet manifold to make sure PMW's was in good shape. As can be seen from the video it certainly is fine.
At this point my 30 minutes were up so I packed everything away and closed the bonnet. Next time, 40 minutes!

I did work on another car though, my new Rover 214SEi. I have said I will not be working on this car myself but pottering about is allowed I think!

The washer jets keep stopping and the usual use of a pin down their orifice hasn't been a complete fix. This isn't a situation that's OK in a car I use as a daily commute car.

So, off with the washer bottle, disconnect the wiring and pipework to both (!) washer pumps and let cleaning begin. Well that was all very easy really, a joy to drive and a joy to work on it seems.
I ran water from the garden tap through the washer bottle and scrubbed it out with an old dish pan scrubber until it was clean.

Next the said pin was pushed down all of the washer jets front and rear followed by a blast of air from my airline gun to clear the pipework. Then reassembled everything, reconnected the wiring and pumbing followed by fresh washer fluid.

So, all well then. Err no. On first trial the pump was working for the front but there was no fluid coming out the washer jets. Not possible surely. Well yes, if you connect the rear jet's pipework to the front pump you won't get washer jets working at the front!

Swapping the tubing round though put everything back as it should be so a good job done in the end.

posted by Martin Randle 24th September 2016 8:15pm gmt


So I returned to PMW today but promised myself I would only spend 20 minutes on it as that's all I can face.

Well I kept to that anyway.

First I removed the aircleaner so that I could reach the water pipe easier and allow me to line it up better. Well I could line it up but it wouldn't cooperate.

So next I decided to take the whole water pump and housing off the car and see if the damned thing would actually thread or if there was a problem with the threads for example.
Well with it all off the car it went in nice as pie and here's the proof.
What you see here is a stainless steel pipe and a new waterpump supplied by Chris Witor so it's not as if I am skimping on parts. PMW should be grateful I reckon!

Now I am wondering if I can put the waterpump back on and try again or maybe take all the inlet and exhaust manifold off and put this assembly back on as it is rather than risk the flippin thing being as difficult as before.

My 20 minutes were up though so on a positive note I am reasssured that the paipework will fit up and on that nore I put every thing away and I will see if I can face more than 20 minutes next week.

When this is all over I swear I won't ever work on the car again, I'll pay someone else to.

Did I mention how I am always reminded how much I love my Rover after working on Triumphs? Yes I did didn't I. Well I love my Rover so much I have bought another and that has now done over 400 miles with no problems whatsoever -are you listening Triumphs of the Raider fleet?

posted by Martin Randle 17th September 2016 8:03pm gmt

Not one bit of progress

Returned to the pipe to the waterpump.

The connection showed both

  1. Spanner loose finger tight
  2. Will not begin to thread
So I disconnected the pipe at the other end where the inlet manifold has a dodgy broken bit (gulp) to see if that would help me manipulate it and line it up so meaning I could tread it then. NO! 
After half an hour I stopped as big spanners would have been thrown around if I continued.

Next I think I will take the inlet manifold off completely so I can move the pipe around and have more chance of getting it lined up perfectly so that the little darling might then start to thread - what a happy day that will be.

I'll worry about other connections after that and of course ultimately whether the waterpump has helped with the overheating.

Oh, and if you remember dear reader I said last week how all this makes me remember how much I love my Rover 214i. No change this week!

posted by Martin Randle 27th August 2016 4:03pm gmt

Walk away

My 2000 is running too warm for my liking - at 3/4 on the temp gauge with the electric fan on all the time.

So I decided to swap the waterpump as it has a new radiator as well as thermostat.

Here's dismantling underway which was fairly straight forward. Hoses undone, bolts coming out etc.

Then before you know it the pump is off the car and swapped for a new one.

Replacement is a simple reversal of the removal. Well it's not actually, or at least not in this case. Getting the bolts and brackets etc back in the right sequence was a bit of a trial taking two or three attempts.

Then when all that was done I realised the pipe taking water to the inlet manifold under the carbs wasn't attached. The pump had to comeoff again to get it in place and then no matter how I tried I couldn't get the nut that holds it on to thread - see below.
Oh, and I managed to lose my favourite screw driver out of a set I have had for years. Now that's impossible but for now that's just how it is.

Meanwhile the gasket between pump and head tore a little bit and I am hoping I can get away with it. I should have remembered to order this gasket as well but I am where I am.

It was at that point I decided to walk away. We will see what next week brings.

I do have to say that the more I work on Triumphs the more I love my Rover!

posted by Martin Randle 20th August 2016 2:35pm gmt

2000 home & UNJ dizzy!

My 2000 is now back home from the garage with diff fitted and an MOT - hurragh!

It does run rather warmer than I would like though so I have only driven it 2 miles during which it seemed smooth and the diff much quieter. There was still some noise which I would consider likely to be from the transmission somewhere - surely not a reconditioned gearbox at some point?

Regarding the hot running though, I did not replace the water pump when I rebuilt the engine and given that it has had a new radiator, a good flush through more than once as well as a new thermostat I have now ordered a new water pump. When that arrives we will see if that helps. It certainly can't do any harm.

Meanwhile, here's a pic of PMW back home with friend in passenger seat.

Today though I have been working on UNJ as it has started running very roughly with alot of hesitation and even struggling to run at all. Now I always think problems are on the ignition side so straight under the bonnet for a good poke around!
I worked on tidying a few bits and pieces up at the same time. The car is losing some coolant from somewhere and there is a small amount of coolant resting on the block in a recess below one of the hoses where it goes onto a transfer pipe. By removing the air filter I could get at it better and I got the hose onto the pipe further and retightened it.

I get the feeling a new pipe wouldn't go amiss though.

Meanwhile, the poor running. Well at one point I had the car running and the air scoop (not visible in the picture) became dislodged, fell against the distributor cap and the car stopped dead. A big clue there! The distributor cap itself felt loose which is not a good thing at all so I removed it for inspection.

Looking inside it must have been moving about as there are marks on the inside of the cap where I reckon the rotor arm has been hitting the side. Not good at all.
I did clean it out but when refitting couldn't really get a good fit when re clipping it. So I found a second hand one, fitted that and fired up the TR7!

After putting everything back I took the car for an 18 mile test run and it is much improved. Now that's a good thing as I plan to use it for next weekend's Club Triumph Border Raiders Run which will be a good 300 miles over 2 days.

I think a new dizzy cap and a rotor arm wouldn't be a bad idea either.

posted by Martin Randle 30th July 2016 9:41pm gmt

Of TR7s

First appearance on here for BRP in many a long time. Whilst working on UNJ I took the cover off BRP to at least give it an airing.

Earlier in the day though I had driven over in UNJ to S&S Preperations in Bacup to get a new radiator cap (on advice it's possible that the previous one is allowing water to be released under pressure) and also get hold of some fitments for the hood cover.
So I spent a fair bit of time this afternoon replacing any of the studs and fixings that were missing or broken and have to say it was very satisfying.

Astonishingly whilst at S&S we solved the troublesome windscreen washers too! An after market filter was doing such a good job at filtering gunk that it blocked and no water was reaching the washer jets. Removal of said filter and then some adjustments at the end of the day mean it looks like the car has reliable powerful washer jets now as well.

And with that level of progress definitely time to call it a day :-)

posted by Martin Randle 23rd July 2016 8:59pm gmt

Putting off the inevitable

Ever since I have had the TR7 convertible UNJ it has been cosmetically challenged but relatively solid. I have poured money into the 2000 but  spent little in comparison on UNJ.

Well the bodywork is becoming worse as could be expected. I am also not in a position to pay for a full professional restoration right now so it's a case of putting off the inevitable day when serious money has to be spent.

The sills of the car are getting "scabby" but still pretty much solid so before things get worse action was needed. First anything flaking off was removed with a scraper, then the sills wire brushed which helped "key" the surface which was a grey stone chip.

After this masking using tape and newspaper with a bag to cover the whell&tyre.

Finally an entire can of black paint was sprayed on both sides. The previous colour of the stone chip material was grey but I actually did some research and from my original sales brochure I found that the correct colour was shiny black.

So that's what I used and the effect is pretty good. Not only that but it helps preserve the car for a little longer.

posted by Martin Randle 10th July 2016 11:26am gmt

Parts arrival & carbs can be good

In this last week whilst I have been away for work two more essentials have been delivered. Here in the picture is the reconditioned diff for PMW (not unwrapped yet) and the off side wheel arch repair panel.

These are tucked away for now as priority is with UNJ because I am using that much sooner than I will be PMW!

At the North Yorkshire Triumph Weekend there is a run out ovver some great roads and whilst the car was OK it did on occasion start to hold back. Comment from a friend following was that the car seemed to be running rich so today I took the air filter assembly off to get to the mixture adjusting nuts under the carbs.
I turned them "up" two flats which should raise the jets up into the carb and weaken the mixture. Followed by reassembly in the best traditions of the reverse of the previous process! Here it is half way way back together.

A run out later didn't seem very conclusive although it certainly wasn't worse so that's not a bad thing. It did die at a junction and wasn't happy at ticking over so I adjusted the slow running speed screws.

I have an electronic ignition kit for the car but never fitted it.  I am now thinking thatit  might not be a bad idea to get round to fitting it. Anyway, the car's reliable enough I think.

Next thing is I should really do something about some of the rust issues before they become a bigger problem. Oh well, always something to do.

posted by Martin Randle 02nd July 2016 9:54pm gmt

Diff-enitely time for an update

It's been a while now but to recap on PMW.

The engne now has a new head gasket and the cylinder head had a light skim. The new readiator is fitted along with the electric fan and it all appears to be fine.

The car isn't going anywhere though as it has no diff in it. On the 10CR it was very noisy but we put up with it. After though as part of the work for next time it has been rebuilt courtesy of one of our crew who knows a retired expert on diffs and gearboxes.

Here it is with new bearings etc but it's currently in Surrey! I need the Club Triumph Pony Express service to cometo the rescue and get it back to me in Lancashire so that the next bit of preparations for 2017 10CR can take place.

posted by Martin Randle 21st June 2016 7:23pm gmt

Progress on two fronts

UNJ has had a service and passed it's MOT. I have decided to do less of the work on cars than in the past myself so less to report I suppose. UNJ did need a bit of work with fuel pipes needing replacing, brakes needing freeing off and the K&N filter replacing as it had become contaminated.

Meanwhile, I have done a bit of work on PMW.

The picture shows the old head gasket and clearly where it had blown. I decided to make absolutley sure all was well with the cooling system though and replaced the thermostat and temp sender unit which had stopped working.

Something else that wasn't working was the electric fan so I needed to do a bit of checking until I found a poor earth. Occe the earth was fixed and with a bit of fine tuning to the controller it now seems to be working fine although resetting the controller may need to be done in due course.

posted by Martin Randle 01st May 2016 6:36pm gmt


I can't get to grips with me actually washing a car, cleaning it and actually getting into it.

That's so not me.

My Rover though is so good to start with and I am going to a show with it in a couple of weeks so I am trying to learn how to at least make it presentable.

I even considered briefly cleaning the boot floor and polishing it!

Here's a picture of said boot floor which shows how solid it is and also  pics of the interior.

Never sat on?

posted by Martin Randle 03rd April 2016 8:47pm gmt

At least one Triumph wants to play!

That's UNJ, the TR7 convertible.

Well, after a little coaxing anyway. I tried to start it for the first time this year earlier this week and it didn't want to know even with a freshly charged battery. It didn't even "cough". I checked and there was a spark at the plugs but I left it at that as attention switched to other cars in the fleet!

Today though I looked at the fuel side and the carburettor fuel bowls were bone dry. I refilled them with fresh superunleaded as a treat, put some fuel in the tank just in case the fuel gauge was not reading corrrect (I have had that before) and then for good measure squirted some Easy Start down the cars.

A turn of the key and UNJ started like a good un - hurragh!

I had to switch it off fairly quickly though due to a leaking fuel pipe from the pump but having fixed that it ran very happily again. I let it warm up and the electric fan cut in as it should.

Even the clutch hasn't siezed which very often happens.

So I will now tax the car from April 1st and then it can join the queue for servicing and an MOT.

posted by Martin Randle 26th March 2016 4:32pm gmt

Certainly a problem!

I left the last entry saying the engine would get hot but not the radiator, probably due to a stuck thermostat.

Well I have now cured that with the radiator getting warm to hot and the top hose likewise so the thermostat is opening. What is happening now though is alot of white smoke from the exhaust and the coolant level dropping regularly.

This is at a steady 900 RPM. Also the oil looks very light in colour but I can't actually see any "mayonnaise" but I suspect head gasket failure.

This would be from either us driving the car in the Czech Republic for a few miles after the wild boar collision with low/no water when it got very hot or from me running it recently when I couldn't get water to flow around the system properly (see last entry).

It's probably a combination of the two and I fear a replacement head gasket along with maybe a skim of the cylinder head.