Reviving 1973 E Type

Hi all, new member here, nice forum !

The Jaguar that brings me here is a 1973 E Type. It has a tad under 30k miles, v12 engine with 4 stromberg carburetors and automatic transmission, probably the original tires as well.

It had been parked/stored in our garage, since about 1980. It was driven to where is sat and hadn’t been started since, until recently.

The short term plan is to at least have it run, drive and brake correctly so it can move about freely. Long term plans are undecided other than keeping it around.

For now, here are some pics taken after it was washed, before it was moved on a flatbed to a more suitable location.

A more suitable location.

Will try and add more pics and updates soon.

Thanks again for the knowledge and experience you all share on this forum.

Welcome Marley (first name?)! It appears that you have an excellent starting point for whatever you decide to do with this car. It appears to be in very good shape- the only real issue I see from your photos is some under-paint rust behind the passenger side rear wheel. Rust is the biggest/most common issue with these magnificent cars- I would start my thorough inspection with that. Also, do not drive on those old tires (see recent thread on old tires). There is a wealth of expertise and knowledge (not me) on this forum- use it the greatest extent possible. Do purchase the requisite workshop manuals and parts lists as these will be required for your journey.

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What is stored with coolant in it? If so, there is almost certainly some major corrosion in the cooling system. Over-heating is not to be trifled with on the V-12s, so this should be explored before trying to even run the engine. You should also, of course, do everything possible to ensure the engine spins freely, and is well-lubricated BEFORE trying to start it. Failure to do that could do serious damage that could otherwise be avoided. Given that an engine rebuild can easily cost $10-15K, don’t take chances.

At a minimum you should change ALL important rubber parts immediately - ALL hoses, thoroughly flush/bleed the brakes and clutch, etc. Sitting for that long, there will be lots of things needing attention, and a careful, methodical approach to “resurrection” will likely save you thousands of $ in the long run.

Ray L.



Plan on rebuilding every inch of the brake system. Then if you do make it a runner, drive it every week weather permitting. These cars hate to sit.

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Hi Marley,
I just revived my Series III after 12 years in storage. The comments from the other folks are very good and I would add a couple things from my recent experience. …
As you go thru the brakes, have the master and servo cylinders sleeved. I omitted that step and found even after rebuilding them, there was hidden corrosion in the bores which caused leaks and soft brake pedal.
Another area to check is the fuel system. Im not sure if you drained the gas before storage, but I did not. That was a mistake because I had sludge in the tank, lines, and carbs. Significant time spent cleaning/ rebuilding those areas. The rubber in the carbs will probably be shot, so I suggest rebuilding them and opening the drain on the fuel tank to check for sludge.


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I noticed that you said that you have started the engine already, or did I misunderstand?
If you have done, did it start relatively easily and how did it run?
Mine was in storage for about 25 years but I started the engine at least once a year, or tried to! (meaning that sometime
When I had it recommissioned three years ago, everything rubber was replaced and all hydraulics rebuilt… its mileage is a tad over 31k.
Oh, and there was loads of crud in the fuel tank, I was surprised that it would start!

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…meaning that sometimes I forgot!)

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If the coolant had the correct percentage of antifreeze/inhibitor, would it not be OK?

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Yes: 50/50, changed every 2-4 years, will work fine.

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At least the 1980 vintage gas is non ethanol so no separation and no rust. Nowadays if you read going to put a car away for more than a few months, you re better off draining the fuel tank. In your case I would drain and clean the tank thoroughly

As others mentioned make sure you replace all rubber parts and hoses. Don’t forget the brake lines, clutch lines as well as the small pieces of fuel hoses between the carbs

When cleaning the fuel system on a V12 disassemble and clean the return valve on the driver side. It a probably gummed up. If it sticks open you will not have enough fuel making it to the carbs. It a just a spring and a ball.

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If flushed and re-filled every few years, yes. If just left sitting all that time, not likely.

Ray L.

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Hiya all,

Thanks for the warm welcome and sorry to keep you waiting.

The engine does seem to run well.

FWIW, I did turn the motor over by hand/crank before attempting to start.

The car came with a blue binder service manual, a reddish brown owners operators handbook and two white paperback body work/quick reference guides.

The car held about 4 1/2 gallons of green antifreeze all those years(looked good too).The only place I found visible cooling system corrosion and buildup was near the rubber coolant hose between the right side intake and thermostat housing. The aluminum was deteriorated a bit at the hose barbs ends
and the coolant passage and hose was pretty well clogged solid, but only about the length of the hose(seems like this was due to air infiltration at that hose), easy to clean out and the new hose cleared the slightly corroded ends of the barbs.

Thus far I have basically…

Drained 4 gallons of old rotten fuel(more like varnish).
Replaced all fuel lines(some rotten, cracked and leaky).
Cleaned fuel tank(was really rusty and sludgy).
Freed up stuck fuel pump(was not pumping).
Rebuilt carbs(stuck floats and chokes etc).
Fashioned new strainer for fuel pickup in tank(old was missing,deteriorated).
Added 2 temporary inline fuel filters(to protect fuel pump and carbs).
Cleaned EGR pipes (clogged solid,prob long before it was parked).

Replaced all coolant hoses and clamps(rusted clamps, leaky hose).
Cleaned water rails/thermostat housings etc(while carbs off).
Replaced thermostats(one was stuck closed).
Sandblasted and painted steel coolant pipes and header tank.
Replaced cooling fan relay(was defective).
Filled and drained cooling system several times(with tap water).
Refilled with Zerex G-05 antifreeze.

Replaced flexible transmission lines to radiator(while doing lower rad hoses)

Removed OPUS amplifier, ballast resistor, distributor pickup and coil (would only run for 10 minutes or so before losing spark).
Installed Pertronix LU1122A distributor pickup and their 3.0 ohm flamethrower coil. (haven’t checked timing yet, starts and runs good).
Added 10K resistor between coil- and RPM gauge wiring(seems accurate).
Wire that went to the start connection on the ballast resistor is no longer being used(taped off).

(surely I have forgot something done already)

Things that I think need immediate attention…

Replace oil and filter(was changed just prior to parking/still looks and feels good).
Brakes, I don’t dare press the brake or shift from park until completely re-built (brake reservoirs look like they have semi crystallized/solidified fluid/rusted calipers rotors etc).
Wires and plugs need replacing(all look original).
Ignition timing needs to be checked and or adjusted.
Exhaust crossover pipe is rusty/leaky(needs repair).

(surely I have forgot something)

Worth mentioning I guess…

Someone had the cooling fans rigged/bypassing the fan relay, so the fans had been wired to the ignition cylinder/switch, fans would come on when the key was rotated to the run position.
Otter switch was good, seems to be functioning normally, switches the fans on when engine warms up, then cycles off and on.
Oil pressure gauge works.
Temp gauge works.
Fuel level sender is kaput(obvious break in connection/open circuit).
Fuel tank was cleaned with pine sol and hot water then with evaporust.
Bought most of my parts from Terrys Jaguar.

Sorry again for the wait and my poor writing skills.

Any and all suggestions/recommendations/criticisms are appreciated.

Thanks again, hopefully I will update soon with more info and replies.

On to some pics…

Ps: When she first started, about a 1/2 pound of rust dust blew out of the tailpipes(over a 5 minute period) and the engine needed to be shutdown due to spiderwebs burning and dust cooking off of everything, otherwise she ran well.

Also, the fuel pump has been remounted(trunk back to normal) and the red squeeze clamps between the carbs have been replaced with screw type.



Wow. Great work! 20char


looks like you handily beat the “flat rate”

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It has been a while, figured an update is required (sorry, should have been sooner).

Things are slow going but progress has/is being made.

She starts and runs good and finally moves under its own power, have been running it monthly. Moved off of the lift and onto the driveway for a exterior wash(no back brakes yet). Found the passenger carpet damp after the wash, at first glance, it seems as though maybe the water came through the door/glass sweep(will invesitgate further at later date).

The oil, filter, plugs and wires have been changed.

Had a bit of a mess on initial startup after oil change, leaked from filter housing gasket/bolt needed more tightening (couldn’t find a torque spec for that).

Found two different numbered spark plugs in use, nine of the N-9Y and three N-10Y.
Two of the N-10Y plugs had been screwed only partially way down (not seated), those two plug holes needed to be cleaned with a tap to get the new plugs seated properly. Seems as though there was carbon buildup in the threads, maybe from previouse owner running with plugs that had not been fully seated. The N-10Y plugs came from the three cylinders being fed by the left hand rear carb.

Used some pink lipstick to verify plug body didn’t interfere with fitment into the plug recess(s).

Worked on the front brakes, cleaned up rotors, rebuilt calipers, removed/cleaned fluid reservoirs, replaced rubber vacuum hoses, reservoir hoses and front caliper flex hoses, painted reservac tank while it was out and installed a new reaction valve.

Manged to cut/break the new seals for the larger pistons(my first time rebuilding calipers).

As far as the rear brakes go, am assuming there is air in the brake lines and/or the calipers are probably seized in their non-braking position. So far have only cleaned and filled the rear reservoir and replaced the reservoir hose. Am expecting the rears to not function until repaired(hopefully soon). Both front and rear reservoirs are holding fluid (not leaking down) and the PDWA seems to be functioning/illuminating the brake warning light(as expected). Fluid level sending units are functioning (the cork floats etc.), have removed those aluminum tubes for now.

Also replaced the voltage regulator, the voltage was reading way too high, above 17, and seemed to be causing a ignition stumble, besides boiling the battery. A new regulator from Welsh seemed to cure the problem(since I managed to break the original Butec on disassemble/diagnosing the unit).

Have disconnected the vacuum retard (probably for good) and fine tuned the carbs a bit more, so finally installed the air cleaners and such.

Discovered the original Otter switch was bad (stuck closed/fans on when key rotated forward) so had to replace that, new one is now working as it should and the antifreeze looks good(drained/filtered and re-filled).

Have discovered the steering rack is leaking from the left side, so now that is on the (high priority) list of things to do along with the rear brakes.

Hopefully will be making more progress in the near future.

Best wishes to all, and thank you for all for your knowledge and information, posted here and elsewhere around the web.


Inch by inch, row by row…:grimacing:

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Hi Marley,
Looks really good, nice job.
I rebuilt my rack, did what I thought was an outstanding job (if I do say so myself;-), even had the rack seal area polished as I had read in Kirby Palm’s Book that they were notorious for leaking after rebuild. Lasted about a year till it started leaking again. Sent it off to Dick Maury at Coventry West and got a rebuilt unit, no issues since. JM2CW