So, just over a year ago, I was offered a GT6 that had been off the road for a couple of years. I went to view expecting a rusty wreck, but it was far from that, it was running and had been dry stored since being taken off the road for a noisy rear wheel bearing.

The price being asked, wasn't much higher than some projects in pieces that had recently sold on eBay, so I jumped at the chance to own it. 

There's a few things about the car that make it non-original. From the factory it was Magenta, but was changed to Mimosa in the mid-80s and I'm sure it's had a replacement body tub as there's not a sign of the original colour anywhere on it. However, the doors are still Magenta in the inside. 

The paint itself is a bit microblistered in places, especially on the bonnet, which itself is not quite the right shape along the bumper line. But it polishes up ok, and is all the same colour so I'm leaving it for now. 

It's a very late car, non-rotoflex, with the original number plate being TEJ90M. In 2006 this was changed to KGV142K at the Ipswich DVLA office. No idea why, but I have the receipt. It's also got early gauges in it, probably as part of the tub replacement?

On stripping out the interior, I found the floorpans were a bit holed and thin in places, so April last year it went off to Andy Dann for some patching and replacement where necessary.  

Since then, I've done nothing with it, but my mojo has returned and over the last couple of weekends I'm starting to put it back together.

Repaired floors all painted.

Carpet pegged in place while glue sets.

At some point I've got to be brave enough to fit the windscreen. I shall be ordering a windscreen rubber from COH Baines as I hear they are the best fit.


NASC Streetrod Nationals

Every August Bank Holiday the NASC hold their National event at Trinity Park in Ipswich. It's a 3 day event, but Sunday is their public Show and Shine day. If you bring an interesting car, you get in for a tenner with all occupants. 

It's an amazing show and one I don't like to miss. So yesterday four of us piled into the 2000 estate and took our place nestled amongst the American muscle cars and hot rods. 

Here's a few pictures of my favourites. 


Return to LeMans

So earlier in the month it was the LeMans Classic and for the sixth time we went with the TSSC on the Tertre Rouge campsite. 

It was the Stag's first trip abroad and I'm glad to say it behaved itself, even in the glorious weather. 

I had to take the back seat out to get in all the camping gear, but it was worth it for the benefit of having a larger tent. 

Here we are all pitched up on the Thursday morning. 

Once again, it was a fantastic event enhanced by being so close to the circuit. I can't believe it's 2 years since we were last there. 


Diff Nose Leak Fix

One of the reasons I've been avoiding taking the PI estate any great distances, is because the diff has been leaking quite badly from the front seal. As someone who's destroyed 2 different diffs over the years in the 2000 and TR6 by forgetting to keep them topped up during long trips, I didn't want to kill another. 

The PI has a good one, quiet with minimal play, so I want to keep it that way. 

First task, get the rear end up in the air and disconnect the driveshafts. 

Then remove the rear exhaust, disconnect prop, undo all the diff mounting bolts, haul it over the subframe arms and pull it out from under the car. 

I'd bought a strengthened nose-piece from eBay 11 years ago, that had been fitted with a new bearing, but never used it, so now seemed a good enough reason to remove it from its box and put it to use. 

The photos get rather sparse now, but  the order of events were as follows. 

- Remove old nose piece and drain oil. 
- Drift out old leather lipped seal. 
- Tap in new leather seal, after soaking in gearbox oil for 24hrs. 
- Fit new nose piece.  
- Swap over propshaft flange as the one supplied with the nosepiece was a Stag one and the PCD is different. 
- Fill diff with oil.

Refit diff, with new Superflex bushes, stainless washers and nuts from Chris Witor, as the old rubber ones were well past their best. 

While the diff was out I also took the chance to re-grease the sliding splines on the driveshafts. 

Checked the oil level once the car was back on the ground, then went for a quick test drive. All seems ok, but will keep an eye open for those tell tale puddles of EP90. 


Professional Repair and My Amateur Fixes.

So now the Stag has been back on the road for a bit, I'm ironing out a few of the problems that are arising. 

1. Starter Motor. This has been working intermittently for a while now, even before I took it off the road, and it wasn't getting any better by itself. After considering high-torque examples, I decided to support a local business and took the old Lucas unit to Nacton Auto Electrics in Ipswich. For £40 they fitted a new solenoid and gave it a check over. The brushes they said were 'like new, and last forever on these old motors'. Fantastic service. 

2. Exhaust Manifolds. While I contemplate what to do with the exhaust,  the blowing from the near side manifold was getting annoying. 2 of the mounting flanges had rusted and were allowing gases to escape. My welding is not great, but I thought I'd try and create a repair, by building up the low areas with weld then grinding back. 

Quite pleased with the results. There's still a little blow, but that's mostly from where the down pipe joins the manifold, which is a horrible joint. 

3. Valley Gasket. This is repair I'm not proud of, but it's done the job. I noticed a fairly serious oil leak, with oil pooling in the V and running down the rear of the block. My first thoughts was that the rubber seals at the end had failed, but closer inspection showed a tiny pin hole in a rusty patch on the tin valley gasket, with oil oozing out under higher revs. 

You can just see it on the upper rib in this photo. 

So I had a choice. Replace the valley gasket, which involves removing the inlet manifold and trying to loosen 12 bolts (steel in alloy) that haven't been moved in years ... or decide on a less professional, but less labour intensive repair. 

I went for the second option, and pooled an amount of Araldite over the affected area. 

It does look like someone has sneezed on it, but so far it's holding. 

4. I also cut down my homemade tailpipes, so they tuck under the bumper. They look less like scaffolding now and it's neatened up the rear end a little. 

Before :

After :


The Mule Returns

At last, after over a year off the road, my Stag passed it's MoT yesterday. 

I affectionately call it the Mule due to it's non-standard drivetrain (Rover V8 + LT77 5 speed box) and also because I fitted it with a manual quick rack (and other steering related parts) for a Triumph 2000. 

So now it's back mobile again, I can look at getting a proper exhaust for it. I may go the custom made route if the pricing isn't too bad. 

But it wasn't all smooth running yesterday, I managed to mangle the front number plate on my engine stand reversing out of the garage. 

I think trying to straighten it may be fruitless, so I imagine I'll be ordering another at some point.  


Nearly there.

Good progress on the Stag over the last few weekends, including :

- Car is now running and driving again. 
- Wiring loom that runs down the nearside chassis leg is relocated down the inner wing. This stops it being fried by the exhaust manifolds. 
- Other minor electrical work to tidy the wiring to the electric fan thermostat and washer bottle. 
- Fit another set of 15x6 minilite replicas fitted with 195/65R15 Yokahama tyres. 

So that just leaves me to fit the bonnet, give it a wash and tidy up, and it should be ready for an MoT.