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Owning an ADO16



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  2000 rebuild


So after selling SRB the drive looked empty. I knew that it couldn't and wouldn't stay empty for too long. After much discussion and twisting of Dad's arm I persuaded him to let me loose on the internet to find a replacement.

Where could I look? I turned to the loot website, and thought I'd see if I could find something there. After a bit of searching I found an advert for an Austin 1300 located in Manchester. After ringing up and making enquiries we decided we'd go and pay the car a visit. The first weekend in January rolled around and we headed off to the see Austin. When we arrived we were confronted with a car. It looked a bit sorry for it's self and very unloved.

Don't get me wrong it certainly wasn't rotten. The car required more work than we wanted to do.

Sadly the vandals had decided it was a good idea to kick the door in, and damage the quarter light.

After taking a closer look at the Austin, we decided we wouldn't take the project on as there was a bit more work required than we anticipated. The seller did tell us that there was another car in a garage. If we wanted we could have a look and decide whether we would like to take this one on.

The seller went to pick up the garage keys and took us over to the garage. When the door was opened there sat a very sorry, very dirty Morris 1100. The suspension was down on the Passenger side, the drivers door was jammed and it had turned a wheel in years.

As found, K-C looking a bit sorry for herself.

Someone had broken into K-C, stolen the radio, damaged the drivers door and also the rear seat. Other than that, the car was surprisingly solid.

After taking a closer look around the car we noticed that it was reasonably solid. We decided that this would be the ideal project. Not too rotten, requiring only a light restoration. The next problem was getting the car from Manchester back to Derbyshire. We arranged for some transport and went to collect K-C mid week.

Apart from the paintwork being a bit on the dull side, and the suspension being low you could almost see the finished article.

Again, looking sound.

The first weekend we got straight down to work and got the engine to run. This was the major factor that could have proved to be a bugbear if we hadnít have got it running. We managed to get the engine running after pouring some hot water into the radiator, that was the magic in this tale. The engine then kicked up, kicking out a lot of bits of rust and giving a really good impression that we were in a nightclub with all of the blue smoke everywhere.

We soon noticed that there was no compression on cylinder number 3. Later we found out that this was due to the car overheating at some stage and the valve springs shrunk by 1/8 of an inch and the head was warped 8 thou. The car was then backed out into daylight where we power washed all of the engine bay, after doing this we found out that the bulkhead was rotten. So we got straight on with our work and removed the engine and gearbox, we then stripped everything out from underneath the bonnet leaving the area accessible to work on and then we would get a better understanding of what needed to be done. The engine bay was then naked.

The bulkhead wasn't a pretty sight. It was even worse when we cut into the bulkhead to reveal yet more grot!

We were wondering what we could do with the bulkhead until Roy Maskrey of RPM workshops came up with a solution that would replace all of the rotten metal with good metal and that would do a really good job.

The following Sunday afternoon Roy came round with his plasma cutter and cut out the piece from under the bonnet to gain access into the problem area of the bulkhead. When the bulkhead was cut open you could then see the shear extent of the rust right through to the inside of the car.

Probably one of the worst we've seen! No wonder the floor was...

At least it was rusty, not rotten. Something which is very unusual when it comes to an ADO16.

After Roy had cut open the bulkhead Dad got straight on with cutting out the old piece of metal and replacing it, by the following Tuesday we were ready to weld in the new piece of metal.

Before welding in the new bulkhead piece we bought some Trafalgar blue enamel paint and cleaned the whole of the inside of the bulkhead out and painted it first with Red Zinc Oxide before painting it with the enamel paint.

All that's left to do is apply a coat of blue, and weld the baffle in, replace the outer panel, and jobs a good 'un!

After that we still waxoyled the whole area. We didnít want the bulkhead to go rotten again for at least another 15 years, or thatís what we hoped anyway. We then realised what deliberate mistake we had made, we had waxoyled before welding and waxoyl is flammable. So we wiped off the waxoyl from where we going to weld and got going, we had no fires until the last few welds when I wasnít watching. The new bulkhead piece was welded in and the car was watertight? Well nearly, just a few blow holes here and there to contend with, but by using sealer on these blow holes we soon sorted the problem.

Finally K-C was watertight again and the engine bay just looked like new.

Engine bay being fitted back out ready for engine to be sat in place.

Our next job was to take the rear subframe out. We knew that there was something wrong with car because there was a rubber bung missing from under the back seat and when you removed the back seat the top bolt that holds the subframe to the subframe mounting was up through the hole. When we got the subframe out we discovered this was due to the mounting being broken. Besides that the heelboard had gone rotten at the drivers side, so Dad had to cut the rotten half out and replace it with half of a new heelboard. This was welded in and the area was cleaned off.

The petrol tank was removed and given a coat of Hammerite and so too was the subframe.

Ready for refitting, the subframe complete with a coat of paint.

The boot floor was repaired and then painted with enamel. The area then was waxoyled and the petrol tank was refitted along with the rebuilt, rear subframe. Surprisingly on removing the rear subframe we found a rusty but an amazingly solid subframe. The car now stood level again and the rubber bung could go back in under the back seat. Finally the last major job was to replace the sills on both the o/s and n/s. A pair of remarkable sills were found at an autojumble at Newark. These sills had the little bit on at the back where the sill joins the wheelarch making a sill change a lot easier to do, and seeing as though our sills had gone rotten just on that part it saved us having to put two wheelarch panels in as well.

With the new sills welded in and the sill to floor closing panels welded on as well the car had sills again! Finally a coat of paint was put on the wings, front panel and the sills. Roy Maskrey of RPM workshops put a finishing coat of paint on for us and K-C shone like new!

The new stills fitted, awaiting a coat of paint. So close to being finished.

Finally after getting the car tested and on the road it was decided that we needed to do something with the hoodlining in the car. And with the hoodlining being the rare tortoise shell pattern we were worrying, until I got on the phone to Trevor Jones who had one in stock. When it arrived it looked like it had just been made the day before. When the new hoodlining was fitted the interior looked better apart from the rear parcel shelf and the door panels. The rear parcel shelf had been fitted with some speakers at some point and two large holes had been cut in it to allow them to fit flush to the parcel shelf. The door panels were light blue like the interior should have been originally but the previous owner had put dark blue seats in the car so we continued to finish the conversion by getting some door panels and pockets off David Canvin. We also got some sun visors to match the new hoodlining as the others were out of another car with a different hoodlining. A rear parcel shelf was found, but it wasnít the right colour. It was a creamy colour and not the white colour it should have been. It looked better than the other though!

The finished product. K-C in 2000.


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