eBay The car runs and drives but is not road worthy. I just drove it around the neighborhood a couple weeks ago to warm it up and change the oil and filter.
For those who aren’t familiar with spitfires, ‘76 was the last year with the higher compression 1500cc motor (91 or higher octane gas recommended), and was the only year with the slotted rims. This is not an overdrive car, just a four speed. The car has a complete frame with independent rear suspension with a monoleaf set-up.
My dad bought the car in 1986 in Kentucky and drove it for that summer as well as the next spring and summer until the clutch master cylinder went out. We moved to Michigan in 1987 and the car sat from that point on, mostly in a garage. It was started once in about 1988 or 1989.
The summer of 2016 I finally got around to getting it running again. I rebuilt the master cylinders and clutch slave cylinder. Both clutch cylinders were in good shape. The brake master cylinder has been working fine and does not leak, but I would not trust it on the road, the inside was pitted badly so it should be replaced. New fluid was run through the system, but the calipers and rear wheel cylinders were not rebuilt. All brakes are working, but as with the master cylinder, they should be more closely examined before taking on the road.
I rebuilt the carburetor with the exception of the o-ring in the bottom of the air slide, thus damper fluid will leak out. However, at this point, the car is running very rich so there is no hesitation despite not being damped.
I pulled all the emissions crap, but saved it in the box of parts shown. The car has no muffler at this time due to the original being so rusty. The car has new plugs, wires, air filter, battery, battery cables, fuel hose, vacuum hose, tires and valve stems, and I added gas filters before and after the fuel pump.
I injected marvel mystery oil into the cylinders through the spark plug holes prior to starting after confirming it was not seized since it had sat for so many years. I also pulled the valve cover and poured some over the rockers and down beside the pushrods. I filled the carb fuel bowl and line from the pump to the carb with fuel before attempting to start the car. The carb is only adjusted enough to enable the car to run decently, but as I said, is still much too rich. After sitting over winter until now from last summer, I had to again prime the fuel pump. The hydraulics were still fine as was the coolant and oil level.
The car has surface rust on the trunk and the floor boards. The battery box is rusted out. The only other rust holes are shown in the pics, behind the driver’s rear wheel and above the driver’s front wheel. The seams where the quarter panels meet the trunk/taillight panel are also rusty but still solid. The car was originally brown, but was repainted at some point before my dad bought it (looked like a maaco job), and was always the dull finish it is to this day. It looks to have been hit in the driver’s side just behind the door because there is bondo in that area that can be seen from inside the car since the interior is out. Most of the plastic coating over the wood veneer on the dash has become brittle and flaked off.
The driver’s seat was broken since bought and the recline feature had been welded. I removed the upholstery, welded the frame where it was broken, ground off the weld on the reclining mechanism, repaired it, and the seat now works as it should.
The tach works, headlights work, dash lights work, but most all of the other lights have ground issues from sitting for so many years. These cars are known for poor grounds and poor electrical systems. It does have the piranha electronic ignition which works well.
I have a new interior door handle, new transmission tunnel (plastic), and new brake light switch to go with the car. It has the hardtop shown, as well as the frame for the soft top. All interior pieces are with the car except for the panel that goes over the gas tank inside the car.
If you live close enough and want to come see the car and hear it run before the end of the auction just contact me. Similarly, if you want any pics of specific areas of the car contact me and I'll send them.
I found the choke (enricher) was not completely disengaging, so this may have solved the rich fuel mixture issue but I haven't pulled it out of the garage and warmed the car up to find out.
I noticed in other triumph listings that amazingly many of these cars have 50,000 miles or less. The odometer only has 5 digits, so they roll over past 99,999 (back to 00,000), and I'm sure most of those listed with under 50,000 miles should have a 1 tacked on in front of the claimed mileage. Mine was only on the road for 10 years and got that mileage (unless SOS incorrectly added the 1). I added this note because many people nowadays have no idea about mechanical odometers; I saw one guy who thought they just stopped at 99999 and you had to guess at mileage thereafter.
|VIN (Vehicle Identification Number):||FM48526U||Mileage:||132,565|
|Warranty:||Vehicle does NOT have an existing warranty||Engine:||1500cc|
|Vehicle Title:||Clear||Fuel Type:||Gasoline|
|Exterior Color:||Brown||For Sale By:||Private Seller|
|Interior Color:||Biscuit||Drive Side:||Left-hand drive|
|Number of Cylinders:||4|