I'm Back! '63 FHC

I thought with U owning a 63 that our cars would be similar. Sorry.

The pictures are a better description. Please see the attached.

I hope we can stay in touch. Over last 40yrs I have accumulated a good deal of spare parts. I could send U a list with pictures

Harold Houpt

On body Prop Bracket Close Up.jpg

folding luggage matt snapped down.jpg

(Attachment 63 Deck Matt.bmp is missing)

No, mine is a 69, a Series II, FHC.

But, sorry I can’t help you.

Hi Harold, I’d be interested in a list of the parts you have. As it turns out, I also have a rear door with the glass. Used, but in excellent shape. And as I move along perhaps you wouldn’t mind me asking questions? I like that Blaupunkt guarantee, that’s cool. I have a Blauunkt as well. On the stop arm assembly, I’ll look at what that part is. I may have a spare, but I do not think so as most of my interior was stolen and I bought another complete insides. I’ll look. The floor mat I would not have.

Does anyone have that part attaching to the rear body that holds the rear door strut? You can see it in Harold’s first pic showing the red rear mats.

Harold_Houpt I only have the two luggage stop arms I need. Sorry, Scot

Progress to date: 9/6/2020. I’m going to use this thread to report the overall progress on the Jag. It has been an education thus far and I know the car far better now. The plan was and still is to get the engine running by starting at the rear of the car and working forward. Out came the gas tank thinking I could simply check it, update the fuel sensor and pump and re-install it. Well, no so simple from two aspects. 1) the wiring harness was set into the car but not hooked up anywhere and most of the grommets it passes through were missing. So I replaced the grommets and re-threaded the wiring harness. I made a ground post in the area behind the gas tank and close to the tail light. I just could not identify any previous location where the grounding lug was attached. After buying snap connectors and sleeve bullets from both Rhode Island Wiring and British Wiring and Grommets from SNGB and scratching my head as to how this all fits together, I think I’m making progress. Here’s a list of the grommets and their function for reference. I had a tough time sorting out the bag of unidentified grommet one gets in the “kit”. Grommets.pdf (109.7 KB)
Then came the bumpers and I still have not conquered them. It is apparent the left rear bumper needs to be mounted on an early Series 1 car with the captured nuts in the bumper because it’d be difficult to insert the bolts through the body with the gas tank in place. Then I discovered bumpers and body don’t readily match up. Right?! I ordered new-made bumpers offered by Welsh. These are manufactured by Martin Robey, shipped to Ohio and chromed there. The chroming is superb, but they still don’t fit! The little tabs that align the bolts are welded in inconsistent locations from one bumper to the next and the arc of the bumper changes from one to the next. This presents a fun time to be had when trying to mount them. They’ll eventually need to be ground so as to match them to the car’s fender shape. I’m only working on the rear bumpers, saving the fronts for when I tackle the bonnet. Here’s a useful idea that helped me locate the bumpers without marring the car or the bumper. I took wooden dowels, threaded the ends with a tap and screw them into the bumper. That holds them securely in place on the car while giving adequate time to lament how these tiny bumpers could be so screwed up.
The left bumper was pretty but had misaligned bolt tabs and an over radiused arc. Welsh replaced it but I’ve no doubt it still need to by fitted.

While waiting for the bumpers to come and go, I moved on to other areas. First the radio. I decided to restore the Blaupunkt Frankfurt TR DeLuxe US Model 32471. This is a two-part radio with a receive (tube based) and an amplified (transistor based). With a lot of help from the J-L forum, I got schematics and found a shop to rebuild it: VintageBlau on Long Island. Here’s a pic of it ready to ship to them. It’ll take about 6 weeks to be completed.

I don’t expect a great sound by modern standards and I’m searching for speakers. I can re-cone the ones I have, but it’s probably better to replace them. By the way, my car was positive ground and I am going to switch it to negative ground. This radio allows the polarity to be switch as well as the voltage (between 12 volts and 6 volts). That’s pretty cool. Now to figure what to do with the clock in terms of polarity.
With the radio sorted, and still waiting on the exhaust system to come from England, I moved on the the headers. This was just going to be a simple paint solution to the original headers; some day I’ll send them off to have them ceramic coated in black. For now I just took a die grinder and some 3M Buff and Blend Cross Bluffs to prepare the surface for simple flat black header paint. Then I dressed the mating surface by hand with a file. Came out good enough to get the engine going and to mount the new exhaust system.
As I got this car with much work done by a restoration shop 25 years ago, there’s a question as to what was done to the engine. Supposedly it was rebuilt along with the all-synchro trany and the rear-end. Here’s what the exhaust ports look like - that’s a good sign as they’re clean a fresh (they all look like this No. 1).
While fitting the exhaust manifolds yesterday, the exhaust system arrived. This is Barrett’s all-304 polished SS system. It does not use the 409 SS in the pipes, so it’s corrosion resistance is high and the pipes won’t turn brown. This is probably overkill for this car, but for about $100 more, you get the best. It was $800 including all the mounting hardware. In addition, I fitted new heat shields underneath the car. As the transmission is an all-synchro version, I had to use a 3.8 shield in the rear and a 4.2 shield in the front along with a bit of fiddling to make it work. The protective plastic on the shields will come off now that the exhaust is here. Here’s the exhaust still being unpacked. More pics to come.
So I’ll fit the exhaust today and then get back on the wiring. I’ve moved forward to wiring up the dash and I’ve finally ordered a large size schematic; these old eyes just don’t see the fine print anymore. Anyway, wiring is a pain, but it’s just a case of buzzing the wires to assure which one you’re connecting and then getting it to the right circuit. Sounds easy. It isn’t!
I’ve got some needs: my ignition switch is missing the nut to fasten it to the panel and also the panel light switch is missing the same. Anyone know where to find these small parts? Also, on the lighting switch I wired it with the wires to the inner diameter vs. to the outer diameter. I don’t know if this is correct, but it seemed logical to me. Here’s a pic.

That’s all for now. I have more questions than answers, but I seem to be moving forward.


I’ll be following along on your journey as well. My FHC is only a few weeks older than yours, 886939. Resurrecting mine after the prior owner had it off the road for about 25 years. You’re making much faster progress than I am.

Another Scott

Hey Scott. Pretty close number-wise…less than 100 LHD coupes between ours. Yours built 18Sep62, mine 26Sep62; Jaguar was on a roll then! I don’t know about me making faster progress…it’s taken me 17 years to get to this point! Mostly that was sitting. Now, though, I am on it! I will stay on it until I’m done. Interesting that yours also has the roadster seats, I have an engine turned center console and gauge panel; they were jumping back and forth between parts bins.

If you remove the gas tank, you might consider moving and improving the ground connection.
The small bullet ground connection is impossible to get to with the gas tank in. I moved the ground connection to the access hole that the interior panel fits over. I drilled a hole for a small bolt and removed the bullet connectors from the wires. I replaced the bullets with eyelet connectors soldered to the ends where the bullets were, removed the paint from the body and bolted the grounds to the edge of the opening.

The wiring harness wires were long and this allowed me to have enough wire to pull back through the grommet hole and make connections outside the car in the future. I loosely tucked them in the area above the grommet hole and they can be pulled down very easily.

The wire hanging down below the new ground location is the gas tank sending unit wiring.




great progress Scot. like the idea of the wooden dowels and the bumper blade…Jeff S.

Thanks Jeff. We haven’t talked yet, but we will!
Jeff1, I like your ground idea and had thought to something similar at that access port, but chose instead to make a ground bolt accessible through the turn signal. I’ll get a picture up soon. The turn signals, backup light, reverse lamp and the harness ground eyelets are now all bonded to that bolt.

Working in the same area of the trunk, left side, rear, I added a ground lug. My left-side wiring harness came with 3 ground wires in an eyelet and I used those to make a body ground to service the tail lights, license and reverse lamps, fuel sensor and probably the fuel pump as well. I drew dashed lines on the rear “bulkhead” depicting where the bolt is below that grommet.

By removing the tail light access is easy and I used an existing hole in the body panel below that visible grommet.
Pics below are through the tail light hole and behind the panel. I think this will provide a reliable ground and I can add additional grounds by using a second nut. In this case I ran a black wire just above the license plate panel to provide the common ground to the right side tail light. I have no external fuel pump, but it would make a good ground if I did.

The underside heat shields have been in for some time now and I finally removed their protective plastic as I’m fitting the exhaust system.

I got the exhaust from SNGB. It is their 304 stainless offering. This is full 304 SS including the pipes, so they won’t turn brown…not that anyone will see them if they did. Still, 304 SS provides more corrosion protection than 409 SS does and it was less than $100 more…$800 all told.
I did run into a problem fitting the mufflers: the header pipes are about 3/8" too long to fit into the mufflers. It appears they bump into the weld joint where the inlet tubes attach to the muffler so I cannot insert them far enough to align the support brackets. On the early Series 1, the mufflers come with a welded strap on their top side and a simple locator strap on the bottom side. Also the UPS guys damaged the package and that left me with bent brackets on the muffler. So, a little cutting and a little bending and I should be able finish the exhaust. I am hoping to be able to leave the mufflers and front pipes in place now, but I have to remove the rear suspension to work on it so I’ll just be fitting the rear pipes and the resonators. Actually, the “muffler” is the “sport” exhaust option, so it is just another resonator. Hope it sounds alright and not too boomy.

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Scot, I’m sure mine originally had the metal gauge panel and console. My understanding from the elderly friend I bought it from is that a prior owner who restored it in the last ‘70s lived in Palm Springs and he made a few modifications for the desert environment. One was that he upholstered the seats in a high quality synthetic material rather than leather due to the arid climate. I suspect that he may have gone with vinyl on the console and the black gauge panel to reduce glare. Just a theory. At some point I will be putting the proper overlays back on.

Scott. A lot of respect for you and that car. An early E just demands it.
Good luck…Hopefully its on the road real soon

If you don’t mind, I would like to tag along. I am new to the forum, but have been stalking it and BaT for a while. My knowledge base is Austin Healeys (big and little). I have lusted after a S1 FHC since the early 70’s while driving/fixing a wore out '68 Triumph GT6 and later a new '74 Midget while commuting to college. Every time I thought I may be able to afford one, life got in the way or they appreciated beyond my reach… Two years ago (June/2018) my sons friend who is like a son to me, stumbled on a true barn find 20 min from my house. '62 FHC 886380; V3111 build 7/2/62 #'s match; 35,000 miles. 2nd owner (68/69) turned out to be a car eccentric hoarder. He ran off the road, buggered the bonnet, put in a dry storage building and over the next 40+ years covered it over with stuff. After his death, his son was tasked with cleaning up his stuff that was spread over 3 or 4 locations while dealing with his late dad’s live in lady. The son knew what it was worth, but did not want to sell it to someone who would flip it for a buck. I paid way under market and promised him he would be able to take his young son a ride in grandpa’s favorite car someday. I don’t sell off my foster children. It is complete and mostly needs dis-assembled, cleaned, painted etc. The bonnet is at Monocoupe Motorworks on Chucks short list (I had to do a lot of talking to get him to take me on). The carbs have visited Joe Curto. I have promised myself to complete my BJ8 Jule frame swap (eta spring 2021) before I get the pleasure of attempting to doing justice to the Jag. Jake Jacobs in Cincinnati Ohio

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Welcome aboard, Jake. I’ve got a ‘63 Midget as well, so appreciate your affinity for the little guys.

Thanks Joey. I look to your posts often. I need to do the LED conversions and tires, and, etc.
Scott, my guess is your car was original with vinyl on gauge panel and the center console. I have seen more of my vintage with that than with the machine turned aluminum. You can open the gauge door and look at the back side. If you see a metal - as in silver color - panel, then yours was vinyl. If you see copper, then it was covered over. At least that is my understanding and what I have actually seen for myself.
Jake, glad to have you on board and welcome to the J-L Forum; it has been invaluable to me. Sounds like you have a great car to start with. A damaged original bonnet is a fabulous place to start compared to a replacement. good luck with it.

Scott & Scott, I read through the various discussions on early FHC seats on BaT last week and the post you referenced here. My car has the OTS (pointy vs. flat top) seats with the recess behind the seats. It has never been restored or damaged other than the bonnet. Another data point…
On the Spridget front, between my son and I we have had 5; 3 Bugeye’s (2 LHD - 1 RHD) and 2 Midgets. John bought a really nice '62 MKI Midget; that I had to refine/sort out. He has a habit of buying nice looking cars that are about 80% there and dad takes them across the finish line. It went when he started a family. We share my Bugeye that I have had for 30 years. A real solid fast road that has all the upgrades.
Looking forward to following the progress. It helps me develop the plan for mine.

I’ve finished the installation of the exhaust. This is just a temporary fitting as the rear end has to come out to make sure it is all complete and ready for service as it was slapped together by the “restoration” shop 25 years ago. I probably should give them a call some day to find out the rest of my sorry story. But I am now working on the wiring and the rear bumpers. Welsh replaced the left rear bumper with one that has significantly less arc to it…it fits much much better than the initial. It’ll still need to be fitted, but at least I have a better starting point. The exhaust came out nice.

Scott, I think this statement may be unclear: what I meant was if you see copper, and you do not see the machine turned aluminum on the face of the gauge panel, then someone has covered it over with vinyl - because the copper was the correct backing for a metal face whereas a tin backing was the correct facing for a vinyl covered gauge panel. It’d be interesting to know what Jake finds inside his gauge panel and whether his center console is vinyl or metal.
Looks like you’ve had a few Sprites Jake. I can assure you they are much easier to work on than the E-type!
The radio is completed! VintageBlau decided to attend to mine once they got into it and saw how unmolested my radio was. It’s ready to ship back now and all functions operate as they should. Even the switching to Negative ground went without an hiccups…not always a guaranteed thing I understand. Onwards to the rear bumpers and finish the wiring. The 11X17 plastic schematic finally came, so I can stop wearing my magnfifiers!

Does anyone have a picture of the fuel tank junction box showing the wiring inside?
Anyone have the finish nuts securing the panel switch and the ignition switch to the panel?