The sun is shining and spring appears to have sprung! Looking out of the front of the showroom there are daffodils pushing up through the grass. We have even managed to have the workshop doors open for a few days to enjoy the sun and fresh air. All this also makes getting cars out to test drive much easier with largely dry and clean roads and none of the dreaded salt or grit. Long may this continue!
Speaking of good weather continuing, tickets for E-Type 60 (12th/13th of June) celebrating the E-Types sixtieth birthday are on sale. This promises to be a great event, so please get your tickets booked. For more information on the event please visit the E-Type 60 website or read the article we published a couple of weeks ago.
In this weeks' update we have a look at air conditioning being fitted to an XK140, a rebuild cylinder head, an Allard J2 and much more.
This is the first time we have fitted air conditioning to an XK. For us it is key to fit these kinds of upgrades in a sympathetic way such that the car retains a standard look. It is also vital that the upgrade is user-friendly and that the controls are straightforward and accessible. This of course can be a difficult balance to strike but, in this case, we are progressing well and are confident that the finished result will be up to our exacting standards.
Pictured here is the dashboard with the central vents and air conditioning control switch trial fitted. This section will then be hidden behind the original walnut veneered draw front. The draw front will be fitted to a hinge at the bottom so all the air conditioning parts are hidden away when not in use. When you want to use the air conditioning you open the draw flap and all the controls are at your fingertips. In addition to these vents there will be two more vents hidden in the footwells.
As we look ahead to the easing of lockdown and being able to get out and use our classic cars, we are seeing lot of customers wanting to get their cars to us for work. This is a challenge with the weather still very changeable and the current lockdown measures still in place. In addition to this demand, we have a number of customers cars which we store in our storage facility over the winter which we are now starting to prepare to be returned to them.
To make it easier for our customers to get their cars to and from us in a safe way we continue to offer a number of transport options using both our own covered trailer and Land Rover Discovery pictured here and our transport partners Straight Eight Logistics. We can arrange to move cars up and down the UK, across Europe and even further afield. If you would like to discuss having your classic car moved please do give us a call.
PPE101 is a very special XK120. It competed in the 1951 Alpine Rally alongside Ian and Pat Appleyard in NUB120. It went on to compete in many prestigious motorsport events through the 1950s. It has remained an active car on the classic motoring scene right up to the modern day having competed in many a Classic Marathon and other classic car events right though the 1990s and into the 2000s.
Today the car is still finished in Old English White although it was retrimmed in black leather, most likely when it was restored in the 1970s, and now has the charming patina of a well campaigned sportscar. PPE 101 remains highly original although it has been lightly upgraded to make it usable in modern events without compromising the car's eligibility for historic events.
This remarkable piece of Jaguar history has recently been sold by Twyford Moors and is now off to be used and enjoyed by a new owner. We look forward to seeing it compete in many more events and writing the next chapter of its motorsport career.
This XK cylinder head belongs to an XK140 FHC which came into us for a number of upgrades including a five-speed gearbox conversion and polyurethane suspension bushes. The owner also asked us to investigate the cause of the car only running on five cylinders. When we investigated it was found that one of the exhaust valves had failed so the head was removed to be repaired.
The cylinder head has now been machined, has new valves and seats fitted and is reassembled ready to be refitted to the engine. Once back in place with everything reattached the engine should once again run on six cylinders and will no doubt feel much more powerful than when the owner last drove it.
We offer a comprehensive range of engine rebuild services. We can build anything from a completely standard XK engine to a race engine. Our most popular option is our 'fast road' specification engine which delivers greater power than the standard unit with a focus on power delivery at low revs and a flat torque curve. We also have a supply of original XK engines waiting for a rebuild so even if you do not possess your original engine please do get in touch if you are looking to have an XK engine rebuilt.
Although our workshops are predominantly dominated by classic Jaguars sometimes other cars do sneak in and here's a classic example. Pictured here are an Allard J2 and a Morris Oxford taxi which we worked on a few years ago.
The Allard was a very interesting project. The car no longer had its original engine but the replacement V8 engine was not in very good condition. The owner tasked us with sourcing and building a more powerful suitable engine for the car. At the same time, he requested a number of supporting upgrades including removing the three-speed gearbox and replacing it with a modern five-speed unit. This car was an absolute delight to drive once finished!
The Morris Oxford taxi had been owned by the same gentlemen for many years and was regularly used for events and weddings. The steering had become unmanageably heavy for him so the car came to us to have power steering fitted. We fitted a hidden electric power steering motor to the steering column in an inconspicuous location and wired the system in so it operated with the original positive earth electrical system.
We have known this lovely XK140 drophead coupe for quite some years. We undertook a restoration on the car which was completed in 2011. At the same time the car was extensively upgraded to include a five-speed gearbox, disc brakes, alternator, electric cooling fan, header tank and a hidden radio.
We have since sold the car on to a new owner who cherishes the car and most importantly gets much use out of it. In its new hands the car has benefited from having power steering fitted to make it even more relaxing to use on long journeys or manoeuvring to park.
On this visit the car is in for its annual service, check over and MOT. We will give the car a thorough inspection and report our findings to the owner so that any work required can be carried out now or can be planned out for the future if it is not pressing. The car will also be having bucket seats fitted to make it even more comfortable for touring.