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andos123

Restore or use as-is?

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I'm after some advice and interested in members thoughts- I have a 1959 TR3a which I inherited from my late Father. It runs and drives well, original RDH British car, chassis is solid and original and from what I can see the body is solid and unrestored. It appears to have the original floor pans, boot floor etc with no evidence of welding or past repairs. It has been stored since around 2003 with only occasional use and was heavily waxoiled which seems to have preserved it well.

Exterior bodywork is showing signs of age- occasional rattle can touch ups at bottom of wings but metal is solid underneath.

My question is should I invest in a respray (which I fear will escalate into a body-off restoration) or just drive the car as-is?  From what I can see the values of these are static, I dont have there time to do the work myself but do have a good local mechanic who does good quality work.

Any advice?

 

IMAG1563.jpg

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11 minutes ago, peejay4A said:

It’s a survivor. Keep it as it is. 

+1

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It looks great, I dont think anyone here is going to say yeah, pull it apart and spend 2 years and GBP 20k doing a cosmetic restoration. Just make sure it is safe and enjoy it. You are a lucky boy.

Stan

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Keep it as it is, just drive and enjoy!

Stuart.

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From your photo I would say it is better as it is that some restored ones I have seen.

Make sure it's roadworthy (MOT) then use it & enjoy.

Bob.

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Echo the comments of others.... looks lovely, just use and enjoy :) 

...... Andy 

welcome to the forum BTW

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Keep it, maintain it and use in the summer. Looks superb.

Dave

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2 minutes ago, andos123 said:

Thanks for the comments, the question is how long to 'maintain' it before it becomes a rolling  full restoration?

From the looks of it with a good coat of waxoyl underneath and not too much use on salty days quite a few years.

Stuart.

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Once the mileage gets above 60,000 assuming no major work has already been done, the engine and tranny will start to get tired and will be candidates for a rebuild at some point. You will get some warning like oil consumption, rattling, whining, popping out of gear etc. The biggest issue with cars that dont get used a lot is seals getting old and starting to leak. The TR2's and TR3's also have a sh*t load of grease points that you will need to keep up with annually so those components dont run dry and/or seize. Dont skip changing the oil/filter and checking the gearbox oil level each driving season.

All pretty easy stuff to deal with compared to the pile of rot and rust that you could have inherited.

 

Stan 

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Good comments above, engine and gearbox were rebuilt in 2000 and its only done about 1000 miles since, overdrive just rebuilt, brakes and suspension regularly serviced. My point is should I keep spending money on upkeep of mechanicals without refreshing the body?

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1 hour ago, andos123 said:

Good comments above, engine and gearbox were rebuilt in 2000 and its only done about 1000 miles since, overdrive just rebuilt, brakes and suspension regularly serviced. My point is should I keep spending money on upkeep of mechanicals without refreshing the body?

If plan to drive it (and I would) you will need to maintain it regardless of what you do to the body and interior. We have not seen anything yet that says the exterior is in need of immediate attention. Show us a picture of the worst bit of the body that you can find.

Stan

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Enjoy using it as it is, for as long as possible............Decent restorations are VERY expensive and the budget always goes out of control.

As you start digging, the hole always gets bigger!

 

 

.

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On 12/1/2018 at 9:25 PM, andos123 said:

. My point is should I keep spending money on upkeep of mechanicals without refreshing the body?

Simply - yes. 

Maintaining mechanicals is in my opinion a more straightforward task. Especially as you say the engine and gearbox have been done. So you have a great base line. 

Make sure it’s all Greased up and suspension is good - Ie check the bushes etc. Check out the steering. Replace the lubricants in all areas. Engine, gearbox, back axle, steering box. Renew coolant in radiator/ engine and use a good (correct anti freeze - not OAT type). 

This way you again have a base line as to when it was done to move forward. I use my own service type stickers so I know when and at what mileage. Time flies esp if you done use it much. 

 

Basically the above is making the car future proof ( as much as you can)

Also check it’s safe- an mot could help with this. 

 

Then get out and enjoy it and remember fondly  your dad. 

H

Edited by Hamish
Sp

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12 hours ago, johnhodges said:

Hi Stan

Can you please let me know where you can get a full restoration for 20k

John

You cant John but based on what I can see it needed no more than paint and a new interior to tidy it up so GBP 20k should cover it.

 

Stan

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