Saturday, 14 January 2017

Brakes.... Or lack there of!

An interesting fact about the humble Morris Minor... Drum brakes, both front and rear when not working in full conjunction will not effectively bring the vehicle to a stop. It will however make your heart race or possibly stop. Adjustment is difficult and without being driven, the grip on the drums will not be entirely accurate.

When the car arrived into my care, we soon discovered that we only had an operational hand brake. This made the unloading of the car slightly tedious but we got there in the end.
So at first we wanted to see if the cylinders were functional on any or all of the drums so we bled the system praying some tension would build luck!

So, a trip off to Thorpe for some new cylinders for each of the drums. The service he provides bringing new parts to the market is wonderful and the knowledge he is happy to share and was happy to share with myself and my family.  The task then was dissembling the brake lines and removing the old brake cylinders.

And from the experience of doing my own brakes I have learned that I can change all tires within 10 minutes flat! I can also safely say that I can adjust and repair the braking system on a Morris. I also learned that an MM can be fairly easily converted to a left hand drive in the process...

Here's an old photo of Mr GUK!!

Past to Present

The other day whilst underneath the Morry checking out some of the suspension rubbers.... I had a sudden Epiphany that allowed me to really realise how long ago the little thing was manufactured.  So basically as a point of thought for this epiphany i thought about the fact my dad is the same age as the car.

Of course this led to thoughts of a little crying baby Bert Edgley....... Anyhow the fact that really occurred to me is that the car basically looks the same today as it did when it was being driven in 1958. I wonder if the purchase of the car was at a similar time to my dads birth. That would be a little interesting to know.  The next thing that also occurred to me at this stage is that the car has been cared for so thoroughly and is a real attribute to the previous owners for the loving care that Mr Guk received in his hey day. So for this article as a tribute to the loving family that he came from- here is a memory for all of you as readers to join in on.

So as part of a folio piece I completed in 2016 I created this photograph at the Monbulk Creek trestle bridge.

I will soon upload a very old photo of the fine little car :) Perhaps one from 50 odd years ago ?

Tuesday, 6 December 2016

Seats Out and In

Yes I know, for my limited audience it has been a bit of a long wait for another post ... well here it is :)

It was earlier this year that we took out the seats from Mr GUK- Which does happen to be a requirement to reach the brake rigging and the  most importantly the master cylinder. So this posed a chance for me to clean the seats up as well as possible. Although I didn't need to 'technically' remove the rear seating- the convenience of taking out the back seat was too good not to take advantage!! 

So- it may sound a little bit 'odd' but yes; I have sat in an MM seat in my lounge room and watched an evenings worth of TV! Yes. well, you may laugh at me but at the time it was a great idea! So with the seats out and treated I kind of had an epiphany for a second time.... Yes, I knew the seats were in excellent condition but they really are in top shape. 

Seats in the Dining room before treatment 

Tuesday, 24 May 2016

The Beginning.. all over again!

..... so Mick of Mount Busby Motors, a family friend and mechanical genius (highly reccomended) called it to get us on the right track. After he had found the problem he was able to fix it and had the starter motor going within seconds. This was of course with the assistance of a second car feeding charge into the battery. As though the starter was as loud as a booming speaker, and i kid you not...  90 % of our street was in attendance.

The motor began to turn over and clonk as the starter engaged and disengaged, and eventually with one final rattle it sparked into life. Roaring like a singer sewing machine, as quoted by a neighbor. After about 5 minutes on high revs lowing out the cobwebs, we crossed our fingers and pushed the choke in. The motor dropped to its below 1000 rpm and sustained for about 30 minutes. After this it began to chuckle and conked out.

This was a truly exciting day!

Hopefully now i will be able to spend a little time after year 11 exams updating the blog as, Mr Guk has already been on many a journey !!

Keeping up with traffic :)

Thursday, 31 December 2015

Attention under the hood

When the car was purchased there was the thought that the car had been sitting for 15 plus year and that the engine might need a little coaxing to get running. So though it was unlikely that the engine was seized we still had a fear the a little fear that moisture had somehow penetrated the head. The moment of truth came as we attempted to turn the fan drive wheel ( not the fan wheel itself)........ it turned, and turned with not too much effort. At this stage it is more than likely that we got our hopes up a little too much. We imminently placed the 15 year old battery on charge with some hope that the battery would be charged and retain enough charge to start the car.

After charging the battery overnight, there was enough charge to turn the lights on maybe twice for a ten second period if lucky. Deciding that the battery was far gone, out came the jumper leads. We hooked up mums car and had it running while we attempted the next stage of out "start up trials". This time there was however the sufficient amount of charge to keep the lights on and test that the indicators etc were functioning. And they all were working perfectly, with the exception of the brake lights as we had no pressure in the brake lines. The trafficators had been disconnected so that is a job for the future to be fixed.

Still the motor had no movement in terms of being kicked over by the starter, so i became the starter with my crank :) . Still no kick. The next job was to remove all the spark plugs and the rotor button from the distributor and clean them & also check the gauging of the plugs. The points were also cleaned in the distributor and then the motor was tested for spark. This was done with a screwdriver with an insulated handle being touched between the open points. With it being ascertained that we had spark, once again we tried to start the car again. STILL no sound or sign that the starter motor was functioning so we thought that was the problem.......but it was not the case what so ever.

Later on that week mum and i payed a visit to a mechanic friend in kilsyth. We asked him a few questions and he answered them with the solutions that he thought maybe possible. Anyhow two days later i had a phone call from him and he was in the suburb next door to ours. He called in and diagnosed the problem in moments. The starter button had been jammed.....

Wednesday, 30 December 2015

Cleaning him up.

So as the car was cleaned we soon realised that it was in pretty good shape, the body was straight the paint not bad considering the previous nature of it.
With out any further ado we scrubbed and we scrubbed and we scrubbed! Cleaned and cleaned and cleaned until we thought is we cleaned anymore that we would rub through the paint.The car was then rolled down the hill from its current point and then pushed it back up into the driveway. This movement was considerably easier than we thought it would be. The event of the carriving in our street certainly served as a focal point for our many neighbours. They appeared left right and center to come marvel what was now a very shiny little car sitting in our driveway.  Though it was now washed it was determined that the paintwork was still heavily engrained granuals of dirt. This was a big job to come and by this stage the sun what setting, but before the day was out, me, being a grease money set about thoroughly cleaning the engine bay and returning the engine to its original less oily clean state of affairs.  With that nightfall had come and dinner "was on the table " so to speak. After covering the car, dinner was had and many already great memories were shared. 
 As you can see in these two photographs , the majority of the dirt was just dust so that was fortunate and we didnt find any rust hiding underneath

The below pic is of the car after being washed, i took advantage of the little shine the water left behind.

Thursday, 10 December 2015

Getting Him Home!!

The immensity of the dirt.
So, it was a very eventful day on the one i officially became the owner of Mr Guk. We went to the previous owners house to pick the car up; it suddenly became very surreal. I was there, a couple thou cash in 50's in my pocket and i was about to buy my very first car!! So the next issue was... tyres... they were mostly flat but otherwise they were not yet so flat he wouldn't roll full-stop, they had a little air and with my assistance with the ORIGINAL hand pump we were on a roll!!

The cable was duly hooked onto the car and then "winch 'im up". This for me was by far the scariest part of the whole operation. Seeing the wheel ramps bend a little under his weight, and the creaks coming from his suspension ( where the cable was attached). But, alas, Mr Guk made it onto the car trailer safe and sound... then came the unloading... as i will detail later.
Mr Guk on the car trailer.

The trip home was mostly me being excited and looking out the back window every five seconds to make sure i wasn't dreaming; i wasn't! We safely made it home and then came the most crucial part of the moving process. The Unload.
On the road

This was a little too steep ...
So after everything had gone so smoothly so far, i was absolutely sure that something bad was going to happen sooner or later. So once the car trailer was in the driveway we soon realized that the descent was far to steep and that the car would get half way and then get stuck half way when the underside hits its pivot point. So plan 'B' was to unload the car onto our street which is a slight hill and the job was going to be precarious where ever it be carried out. So it went like this: the ramps from the car trailer were down, line up with the cars wheels and slowly but surely we backed him to the beginning of the ramp. We then assessed the situation to find he was being reversed slightly left hand down ( dads fault) so we had to do a straighten up. Let it be know to the reader that this was all carried out before he car's motor was active and without the use of the brake pedal therefore  all breaking was done with the hand brake.Slowly we inched him down the ramp until has back wheels were touching the bitumen, then the winch cable undone and the little cars faith was put into dads reversing skills. It was then decided that it be best to be done fast, so in one sift action the handbrake came off and of he rolled. Much to my delight it came straight down the ramps and arrived on the road in one piece where it was the stabled with the handbrake and bricks.

Next came the ENORMOUS job of cleaning the little car, and boy was there alot of dirt.....soap......water......sponges.................!