Well, We Did It . .

(Scott Johnson) #1

Good morning, dear readers. You may or may not have caught the earlier installments in this saga, wherein I told you about my friend who has a slight car hoarding problem and an overwhelming desire to see me purchase his ‘63 FHC that’s been off the road for a couple decades. See, Not an E-Type Owner Yet, but lots of questions.

When I last left you a few weeks ago, he had an offer from a broker who was going to ship the car overseas, but he really still wanted to find a way for me to buy it. My friend Robert, Interweb Star (with E-type content) As I mentioned, I convinced myself that the timing just wasn’t right, so I set that dream aside.

Well, if anything, my friend is persistent and said I could change my mind any time up until it got loaded on a truck to head east. So my wife and I had a good talk last night, which ended in her saying the magic words, “OK, fine.” :wink:

I guess I’ll get to hang out with you kind folk a little longer. Be prepared for lots of questions as I start the work to bring her back to life.

(Kevin) #2

Scott - Congratulations! You are guaranteed lots of fun mixed with a little pain and frustration along the way, but when you drive her, you’ll be unable to remove the smile from your face. Enjoy this new adventure.

(Ole Würtz) #3

Congratulations !
But, don’t you know that when a woman says that, it means the opposite ? :thinking: Sometimes :face_with_raised_eyebrow:
Well. at least you’ve got your dream car and you’re in contact with a bunch of E-type knowledgeable people, all willing to help.
Welcome to the roller-coaster of classic car ownership …

(j limongelli) #4

Love it! Smell it !make love to it baby!
It’s like no other…

(Scott Johnson) #5

Ole, I’ve been on that rollercoaster for at least 20 years now. I have a '63 MG, '47 Merc and '25 Dodge currently taking up garage space. (Anyone need a '25 Dodge Touring Car? It’s for sale)

(Paul Wigton) #6

Oh, man: the disease runs deep!

The Dodge would be cool…NO.


(Scott Johnson) #7

Like yours, it’s genetic; passed down through the males of the family. :smile:

(Mitchell Andrus) #8

Don’t get go fever… do it right before hitting the road.

There are usually good reasons for a car to get parked and not running again. Figure this out if you can, that’ll be at the top of your list.

For safety and less aggravation:
Change all the brake lines, rubber fuel and clutch lines, clean out all the wheel bearing grease and replace. Grease all other nipples and make sure old grease comes out. At this point it’d be best to rebuild all the calipers, you can wait til one leaks, then do all of them. Check EVERY hose clamp with your fingers. If found the one below broken out of eye sight, it looked tight at was dug into the hose. Tires and tubes are a given of course. While they’re off have a good look at the spokes and splines.

I’ve got a Model A Ford. Pretty much useless these days. Clubs are into cars that go 65 on the highway.

(Scott Johnson) #9


Yep, those are all on the list. I suspect it will be mid-summer at the earliest, before it is on the road. The engine will be coming out for new rear main seal, which then of course begs the question of what else to do while the engine is out. :slight_smile: Trying not to make too big a snowball.

Re: Model As and old Dodges, you’ve hit the nail on the head there as well. I drove it a lot when I lived in town (a small town), but we moved to a place out in the country in 2017 and I just don’t drive it anymore, because I have to drive on highways to get anywhere.

(paul spurlock) #10

Congratulations, you won’t find a better place for help and commiseration!! Hope it goes well with the purchase.


(Mitchell Andrus) #11

I just pulled and installed my engine for a clutch (press plate, release bearing, surfaced flywheel, new clutch slave. Here’s my ‘might as well’ list:

Water pump,
high-torque starter and wire connector,
iffy coolant hoses and clamps. For the big on at the bottom radiator, there is a Ford truck hose that fits easier than the ones at the usual sellers. Use the bottom 5" and chuck the rest. Amazon Part #Dayco 70812.
Motor mounts, uprated ones in front,
Trans work: new syncros (see my thread on these rings, some are not cut right), bearings, seals, gaskets, cluster gear shaft (I’ve yet to pull a British gearbox apart and NOT find this shaft needing replacement), shift lever bushings.
Moved engine ground strap to front engine mount (out of the way of the torque tube re-install, less corrosion.
Cleaned and touched up paint.
Replaced iffy wiring.
Re-covered the shifter tower and new boot (gaiter).
New exhaust system install.
Every gasket that came apart of course.
tighten every bolt you can now reach with ease.

I lifted the car off the engine leaving the nose in place. At 30" high there’s plenty of room to work.

All this took about a month of evenings.

With the trans on this stand, it slid back in with 5 seconds of jiggling. Easy-peasy.

(69 FHC ) #12

Does it come with a couple of Tommy Guns? It looks like a Capone mob car, which isn’t a bad thing. .

(69 FHC ) #13

Now the fun begins. Congrats.

(Scott Johnson) #14


Thanks for those excellent suggestions.

(Scott Johnson) #15

I do have a co-worker who owns a Thompson submachine gun, but I had not thought about working a package deal. :wink:

(69 FHC ) #16


(Scott Johnson) #17

Well, technically his 95 year old mother owns it. He is an Illinois resident, while she is a resident of Florida, where such things are allowed.

(Erica Moss) #18

So you left the bonnet on, and the car was elevated 30"? You must have taller ceilings than I do. I don’t think I could raise the bonnet high enough to manipulate the crane that way. I guess it could help with balance though as it would counterbalance the IRS. What are your jack stand points?

(Paul Wigton) #19

Just get a Roof OHC conversion: 65 mph, solved!

There’s still the matter of stopping it, though…:grimacing:

(Robert Thomas 68 FHC ) #20

Congratulations! Ok different approaches… I would not pull the engine for a new main seal. Wait till you NEED a clutch or SOME MAJOR reason to pull an engine. I agree with safety concerns, but you risk the possibility of tearing this car apart, and it becomes a multi year project of piecing it back together. It’s not fun for you or the wife.

Instead I suggest check all the fluids for level and condition. Flush the brake lines and clutch, Inspect all rubber, ( brake lines should have date codes) and get the car running, and driving assuming anything truly past it’s prime gets replaced.

Then you, and the wife, can drive and will enjoy the car. Then start your “ rolling restoration “. One month you can redo the cooling system, then drive the car. Next month, do the engine mounts, then drive the car some more. Then do the brakes, drive the car. Etc

This is what I have been doing with my 68 FHC I bought in August. It’s a nice balance of driving pleasure and tinkering.
As the saying goes YMMV