Another chilly week has passed and the workshop remains packed with classic Jaguars of all shapes and sizes. We would like to remind our customers that our last working day of the year is going to be Thursday the 23rd of December. We will then reopen on Tuesday the 4th of January. This will give all our staff the opportunity to unwind and enjoy the festive season after what has been a very busy year in the workshop.
On the subject of how busy this year has been we would like to thank all our customers, old and new, for their support over the past two years. This has been a strange time for all but we are delighted to have reached this point stronger than ever. No doubt there are further challenges yet to come but we are confident we can meet these head on.
We would also like to thank our staff who have worked tirelessly to deliver their usual high standards of work no matter what the challenges. From working split shifts and being flexible over working weekends in the height of the pandemic through to proactively embracing safety measures when returning to ‘normal’ working, they have strived to make this a safe and enjoyable place to work. Thank you all!
In this weeks’ update we look at a famous MK1 saloon, two E-Type and several XKs.
This lovely Jaguar MK1 saloon featured in the UK television series Endeavour. For our international readers who are not familiar, Endeavour is a detective drama series set amongst the historic splendour of Oxford. It is a spinoff from the Inspector Morse series following a young Morse earlier in his career. Morse was famous for driving a Red Jaguar MK2 saloon but in this series, being set some years earlier, his chosen set of wheels is this stunning Jaguar MK1.
We are given to understand that 31-year-old Shaun Evans (the actor who played Morse) took to driving the MK1 like a duck to water. This may also be a testament to the quality of the restoration, how well the car drives and the addition of practical upgrades. Indeed, there were apparently no major issues with the car during filming other than it looking too shiny for the cameras!
The car is with us for a few jobs including an alternator upgrade but is already in fabulous condition. It has been restored and extensively upgraded by its owner. Although this car would have started life with a 3.4 litre XK engine it has been upgraded with a 3.8 litre unit. This is mated to a later all syncro gearbox and an original Coombs exhaust system.
Pictured here Marc is making up and trial fitting the brass beading for a new set of hood chromes. The correct hood chromes really finish the look of a convertible XK off, however they are often left off. This is because they are costly and tricky to fit so many opt for the cheaper option of fabric beading to cover the hood fixings. We believe it is a real shame to compromise on the finish of a car at such a late stage and fitting the correct chromes is always the best option both in terms of aesthetics and realising the cars true value if one comes to sell it.
The process of making and fitting these hood chromes is a challenging one though. First the brass beading needs to be shaped to fit the contours of the hood perfectly. This means bending and shaping it though three dimensions whilst ensuring the bends look smooth and natural. The two parts of the rear chrome meet in the middle of the hood below the window. This needs to be aligned just so. If they meet slight off centre, it will look all wrong. If one is slightly twisted, they won’t sit at the same angle. Just enough of a gap has to be left between them such that once they have been chromed they will fit snugly together. It is like a moving, 3D jigsaw puzzle!
I think one of the best things about early E-Types is that they have three windscreen wipers. I recall, as a child in the 1990’s, being drawn to an E-Type in a leisure centre carpark and asking my father what it was. That was the beginning of my obsession with classic Jaguars. One of the first things I noticed was the three windscreen wipers and I thought the whole thing was just so stylish. Perhaps I am alone in my admiration for E-Type windscreen wipers, but now I am the man responsible for making them work properly it is probably a good thing that I am enthusiastic about them.
This cracking series 1 E-Type coupe came in to have electronic ignition fitted as pictured and mentioned in last weeks’ post. We noticed when checking the car that the windscreen wipers didn’t self-park so reported this to the owner. He asked if we could fix this as they had never done so in his ownership.
The park mechanism on an E-Type is buried behind the dashboard and is accessed through a 5 inch square hole in the bulkhead. This job really does require small, dexterous hands and the willingness to end up with lots of small cuts and scraped! We found that the park contact was missing altogether, the soldered wire had fallen off and the mechanism was covered in overspray. With a bit of cleaning, soldering, the correct part fitted and a touch of adjustment everything is now working as it should.
Now we are well back into the winter weather our car trailers are working harder than ever. We offer covered transport across the UK and even international collection and deliveries throughout transport partners. If you are considering having work done but do not wish to drive your car in winter weather or it is simply not practical to spend the time driving the car to us, please to get in touch to discuss transport.
We also offer secure storage for classic cars. If you want to know that your car is in safe hands and being looked after well over winter, then look no further.
When it comes to transporting cars experience and understanding count. With many years working with and transporting classic cars, ranging from restoration projects, through non-runners needing repair, all the way to concourse winning restorations, we understand the sensitive nature of moving these special cars safely. Our experienced driver is well versed in how to, and how not to move, start, load and secure classic cars safely. Rest assured your cherished classic is in the best of hands when being transported by Twyford Moors.
We have been sharing the gradual progress on this Series 1.5 E-Type over the past few months. The project started out with a simple respray at another garage, but the project came to a halt for several years. The owner has since brought it to us as a painted shell and a lot of rusty parts in need of serious tlc. We went thought it with the owner and came up with a plan of action to deliver him the car he wants within a budget he can afford. This, then is not a full restoration but more of a major sixty-year service. All parts that needed overhauling have had the work required carried out and the car is being rebuilt to be a smart looking, usable and reliable classic.
It was agreed that reusing the original wiring was not a wise move. This had almost all been removed anyway, what was left in was covered in overspray, was very brittle and corroded. Really the relatively minor cost of a new wiring loom made sense in the context of the labour time taken regardless of reusing the old wiring or fitting new. In our experience having your electrical systems in good order makes such a difference to the reliability of a car.
The new wiring is now in and connected. Pictured here the car is having its lighting systems tested. The next step now everything is wired up is to fit the radiator, fill the car with fluids and get her running.
This XK150 drophead coupe has come in to have bucket seats fitted. This is a very popular upgrade. We find they make a tremendous difference to the comfort of an XK. It is of particular benefit to the passenger giving extra support through the corners. Given so many people use XKs for touring and cover great distances it is little wonder that upgrades to make these cars even more comfortable are so popular.
As the car was with us the owner also asked us to investigate a steering wobble. This required some investigation and a good test drive to recreate the problem. Our mechanic quickly found that under certain circumstances the car developed a quite alarming wobble coming up through the steering. Thorough checking of the steering and suspension traced the problem back to a worn worm in the steering rack allowing the wheels to move backwards and forwards. A fully rebuilt steering rack will soon be in place and the car will be ready to return to its owner.