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Hello, I have a question. There are two TR3's I am looking at. One 55 model TR3 with a big mouth conversion and a 61 TR3A. They are both equally priced, about 20 000 GBP. The 55 is overall very good, but with a slight gap between bonnet and the wheel fender. The 61 has the 2.1 l engine with overdrive on 3rd and 4th gear. The 61 has a galvanized body, and the paint has peeled off in places. It also has a vinyl hardtop to go with it. Both drives and brakes well. I am at a loss which one to buy, and which one would be the best value. Are there significant improvements from TR3 to TR3A, does the slightly bigger engine, the overdrive and the available hardtop on the TR3A make it a better buy? I am not very concerned with the peeling paint, I can sort that out and I dont need a mint car. Any opinons on which to go for?

Edited by thore.bergsaker@gmail.com
Forgot to write.

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If the 55 has Lockheed drums, hubs and master cylinder, that could be an issue due to weaker axle and parts availability.  The 3A overdrive is huge, both for collector value and fun (is it a factory o/d or added?).  A 55 small mouth with overdrive is certainly desirable, but I think the 61 sounds more reasonable.  Of course, body condition is paramount, assuming no major chassis issues.

 

Dan 

Edited by 2long

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Welcome to the forum. Ordinarily the small mouth TR3 would be the most desirable but since it has a TR3a nose then cosmetically they are very similar from 10ft. The actual 3a has exterior door handles and the actual 3 probably has the factory mounts for aeroscreens if that is important to you. The overdrive is huge especially if you do any highway driving. Mostly though all those things can be sorted and I would go for the one with the best body and if what I really wanted was a small mouth TR3 I would buy the TR3 and find the correct apron for it.

Stan

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Chassis condition is the main consideration. The back end is always a problem. On my 3A I had to hang the exhaust off the boot floor in the end. It needed a new chassis which took many years to fit and rebuild. It would probably cost more than the car is worth if you had a specialist do it for you.

The Girling brakes and the o/d  help you to decide to go for the later one once you have the chassis checked.

My Moss catalogue shows a price £1,633 for a small mouth panel. Will it fit ???

It is unusual  to have  the body galvanised and it could be a problem with new paint. The chassis may also be galvanised which could be a plus.

Good luck,

Richard & B.

 

 

Edited by Richardtr3a
Adding price of the new panel

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Thanks for replying. I went for the 61 model. It has a few paint spots to be fixed but it felt better on the road, steering and brakes were a lot better. Next thing is new wheels and tires. The wife wants to drive, and I need it to be as easy on the steering wheel as practically  possible. What is the smallest recommended rim width? 4" or 4.5"?

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9 minutes ago, thore.bergsaker@gmail.com said:

Thanks for replying. I went for the 61 model. It has a few paint spots to be fixed but it felt better on the road, steering and brakes were a lot better. Next thing is new wheels and tires. The wife wants to drive, and I need it to be as easy on the steering wheel as practically  possible. What is the smallest recommended rim width? 4" or 4.5"?

Welcome to TR ownership.

Post us some photos if you can. 

Original steel wheels were 4".  Wire wheels come with either 48 spokes (4" rim) or 60 spoke (4.5" rim)  The limitation on tyre size is the hole you have to keep the spare wheel in.  The regular tyre size would probably be 155 x 80 x 15  but 165 section is often used because of price and availability.  Again be sure it will go in the spare wheel hole!

To lighten the steering there are a couple of routes. 

1.  Stay with the steering box and renew the relay rubber blocs and pins (silentbloc and pin 105063 or track control pin kit) with phosphor bronze arrangements https://www.revingtontr.com/product/105063uk/name/track-control-pin-kit-2-x-105063u-bush-pb  and perhaps fit a bronze bushed steering idler.  Ensure the vertical post lower trunions and all ball joints are fully lubricated.  Consider the Revington TR improved Ackerman angle steering levers - they really work, and take away that skipping on bumpy corners problem.  https://www.revingtontr.com/product/rtr3314k/name/steering-geometry-imp-kit-tr2-3b 

2.  The other route is a steering rack conversion - some are good some are horrid but they all mean your quirky centre horn push and indicator assembly in the centre of the steering wheel will be compromised. The item is either removed completely and other switches are added or a slip ring set up is used.  With the slip ring set up the horn push assembly will then always rotate with the steering wheel and the indicator will not self cancel.  Originally it is held fixed from rotating by the stator tube and lower olive and clamp nut, the rotation of the steering wheel actuates the self cancelling indicator mechanism.

Enjoy your TR

Cheers

Peter W

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When working properly the TR3 steering is not that bad at speeds above parking speeds. You have a lot of leverage with that big steering wheel and lots of elbow room with the low cut doors. The thing I notice more than the effort needed to turn the wheels is the 1920's steering geometry especially the lack of castor. There is no relaxing, you have to steer the whole time.

Stan

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The Revington mods Peter mentions are simple, cost effective and work, add the adjustable steering box top plate and you have a nice car that steers very nicely.

Iain

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2 hours ago, iain said:

Add the adjustable steering box top plate and you have a nice car that steers very nicely.

I would only add good quality 165 tyres, easier for steering.

Many fit wider ones.

I have compromised for 175s, Bridgestone Weathercontrol. Many swear by Vredesteins, either Sprint Classics or the more reasonably priced T Trac 2, 165-80-15 is the size.

The Bridgestones have lower profile but excellent on wet and snow. Sturdy. 175-65-15 

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I have original steering on both TR2s with the Revington kits. They are very good just a little heavy at parking speeds.

I have just put 175 tyres on my daily driver TR2 after 40 years of 165s. If anything the steering is a bit lighter with the new 175s, the old tyres were very old and worn.

175s weren't economically available down under previously.

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I go with 155 tyres, which was stock for my 2 and which provides lighter steering, along with 28 -30 psi in front and 30 psi in the rear.  Most folks go for the wider tyres for grip etc, but I like the 155s.

Dan

Edited by 2long

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3 hours ago, 2long said:

I go with 155 tyres, which was stock for my 2 and which provides lighter steering, along with 28 -30 psi in front and 30 psi in the rear.  Most folks go for the wider tyres for grip etc, but I like the 155s.

Dan

I thought of 155s for my long door car but went with the 165s I knew. In hindsight the 155s on the original 4" steel wheels would have been nice.

 

Complete RHS.JPG

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1955 will not be a 3

Roy

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Could be, my '3 (TS9551) was made on 16th December 1955 (but 1st registered in1956)

Bob,.

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FirstTR3 is TS 8637 from September 1955.

Stuart.

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18 hours ago, roy53 said:

1955 will not be a 3. Roy

And mine built on 17 November 1955, but registered in August 1956.

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I fitted 165 tyres on my TR3 and regretted it a short while later as I think they look better on 155 size and the spare will go in the spare wheel hole without deflating it a bit or using brute force and ignorance.

Mick

Edited by Mick Forey

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sorry guys realised my mistake later after posting.

Roy  -_-

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We forgive you  (this time :D)

Bob.

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No. Drums, & a rear axle with rather weak half shafts (ask me how I know !)

Bob.

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Change to discs and Girling hydraulics and axle at TS13046 Mid 56.

Stuart.

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