The biggest job with the exterior, apart from the spraying itself of course, was the chroming. I used Colonnade Chroming in Wembley (http://colonnademetal.com/) on Bill's recommendation, and whilst they aren't they cheapest, they are almost certainly one of the best chromers around. I've had a fair amount of chroming done in the past, to varying degrees of success, but these guys will give you an honest opinion about whether something will chrome or not, and what the end result will look like. They even managed to get a fantastic result with the rear light cluster, which most chromers won't touch as it's made from a material called 'mazac' (also known as 'monkey metal'). They did the bumpers, headlamp surrounds, rear lights, inner and outer door handles and window winders, hood handles and wing mirrors (I could have just had these polished as they were in stainless steel, but I wanted them to match the rest of the car). Additionally, they also did the thermostat housing, plenum airbox and polished the top of the SAH rocker cover in the engine bay… I think the results speak for themselves.
I wanted to replace the windscreen glass with a laminated screen for safety reasons, and whilst I was at the NEC Classic Car Show I spotted that Pilkington Glass (https://www.pilkington.com/en/us/automotive/pilkington-classics) made replacement units for classic cars. I gave them a call after the show and ordered a replacement windscreen and the nearside and offside door windows. All looked great on delivery, until fitting… check out the location of the logo on the side glass!
I contacted Pilkington to explain the problem (I think they thought I was making it up initially until I sent them photographs), and they agreed to replace both side glasses with ones that didn't have a logo on at all… oh, and asked if I wouldn't mind returning the original glasses with the logos marked in the correct location!
Whilst we're on the subject of windows, the window regulators needed replacing, but the new ones that are currently available seem to rattle and have a lot of play in them. I managed to find a pair of new original stock items from TR Shop, but needless to say, due to their rarity, I had to sit down when Lucas told me how much he wanted for them. Whilst I was there, he had a pair of new original stock weather strip kits for the tops of the doors, which again I purchased as these look better than the ones that are currently available. I also needed a full set of window channels, but it seems that they are manufactured by The Roadster Factory (http://www.the-roadster-factory.com/indexmain.php) in the US and only certain channels were available. I phoned around a few suppliers in the UK and none of them had a full set…it seems each of the four channels were different (front and rear nearside, and front and rear offside). I then called TRF in the US directly, and even they didn't have a full set, so I ended up ordering what they had and then made up the missing ones by ordering from suppliers who had them in stock in the UK.
The windscreen wiper motor, wheelboxes, nylon spacers and jets were all replaced with new items as I knew they were pretty badly worn based on the way the wipers used to work.
Wherever possible, I also replaced the body rubbers and gaskets with new original stock items. I found that in many cases, the new rubber items didn't seem to fit particularly well, for example the front scuttle air vent rubber was too thick and the vent wouldn't sit flat, and the windscreen to body rubber seal had the holes for the windscreen frame in the wrong place.
The original headlamps on the TR6 were almost pointless, I'd probably have got more light out of a candle! I found some replacement H4 Lucas headlamps into which I fitted some LED bulbs from Classic Car LEDs in Cheltenham (https://www.classiccarleds.co.uk/). In fact, they do a full kit for all the lights, so I replaced all the exterior bulbs with LED units from them. The difference is truly night and day, and since fitting them to my car, I know a few other TR owners who have approached them to do the same.
I really liked the look of some grille-mounted driving lights that I saw on another forum member's TR6 and he was kind enough to let me know that his were from a Triumph Stag, so I sourced another pair of H4 Lucas units to use for this purpose.
The rear light lenses looked pretty filthy but most were in good condition. I replaced the reversing lenses with new ones (I must have bought about four or five before I found two that were the same colour). The red reflector part of the brake lens was actually removable, although you have to be careful how you do this in case it's been glued on by a previous owner by something more than what the factory used. Once this was dismantled, I removed the silver foil behind the reflector, and the all the rear lenses went in the dishwasher for a good clean. Can I suggest here that you do this when your better half is not around! I replaced the silver foil and reassembled the rear brake lenses. With the LED bulbs installed, they look as good as new.
One of the areas that suffered the most from rust was the front plenum drain off area in the corners just by the A-posts.
So rather than just leave a small rubber pipe to divert the water from this area into the inner wing, I asked the guys to run a pipe all the way down and through the stainless steel wheel arch baffles so that the water would flow away completely.
I was never a fan of the 'Le Mans' petrol cap, so I did some research and found a company who sold the 'Monza' petrol cap. I purchased two, one for the petrol cap and the other one for the SAH rocker cover so they both matched and it kept the coherency of the car.
I purchased some wheel arch liners from Revington TR just to try and reduce the amount of water and road debris being thrown up and getting into the gaps between the wings and the inner arches. I had them sprayed up in body colour before fitting and they seem to fit and work pretty well, in addition to tidying up the look inside the wheel arches.
The front spoiler was also sprayed in body colour at the same time as the wheel arch liners and then wrapped in Paint Protection Film (PPF) to try and protect it from the inevitable stone chips. I also had the front valence panel wrapped in PPF as this is another area which seems to suffer from stone chip damage on most TR6s.
The hood frame was sent off for refurbishment to TR Trader, and once it was back, about a week later, the whole car was shipped off to Trimmania in Finchampstead (https://www.trimmania.com/) so that the soft top hood could be custom-made to fit the car. I know that you can buy off-the-shelf hoods, but the fit is not always great, and I wanted to go with a red which matched the interior. I actually had fewer choices than I had initially expected, but they did have a mohair colour which was pretty close, so I went for that option. They had to modify the hood cover slightly due to the roll hoops, and I had a zip-out rear screen so that in situations where I might not want the hood down, I could still get the feeling of air in the car. I also asked them to not cut out the rear quarter plastic windows… I could never see out of them anyhow, and by doing away with them, it made folding the hood down much easier.
Finally, again an idea stolen from Bill, I fitted a stainless steel MX5 MK1 luggage rack to the bootlid. I went for the MX5 unit as the build quality was much better than the original TR6 ones and it was a little smaller so looked better when it was mounted on the boot. Since the audio amplifier was going to take up some of the boot space, and I still wanted to be able to take the car away for holidays, I figured this was a good idea… I even managed to find an old-style suitcase manufactured by the Morgan Motor Company which looked and fitted perfectly.