Tuesday, November 18, 2008


BOB's been getting fairly typical usage recently - weekend trips out into the woods, mainly. We had a 'fun' incident the weekend before last, when an errant branch disconnected the fuel line underneath the car. Fortunately we were stopping 1km down the track anyway. Just as we pulled over the engine cut out... I thought it was something ignition related, but the stink of fuel and trickling noise gave the problem away. We didn't lose too much fuel. I guess the 30 year old fuel line clips are a bit brittle, so i've replaced some of them with cushion clamps now.

Last weekend we decided to try our first Triumph Sportscar Owners Australia (TSOA) Victoria EMR... the Sunday Early Morning Run. Having a quick checkover the car on Saturday night I noticed with some annoyance the almost complete lack of clutch fluid in the reservoir! Topped it right up and had a bit of a poke around and decided it was obviously a leaking slave cylinder seal ... but a very slow leak. It can wait.

Next morning it seems that the poking around had filled the bloody thing with air. Bleeding kit tucked away in some box somewhere or other, so a quick spanner to the nipple let some air out and the clutch was back to life. Phew ... made it to the start of the run 10 minutes late - but these things never run on time. The local Daimler club was at the same meeting point which added some confusion, but there were a lot of tasty looking Triumphs all just setting off. A kindly TR8 (4.3l) owner who was clearly hanging at the back said we could follow him - probably a bit concerned we might not be able to keep up.

So we headed off towards Ballarat on the highway behind three droptop TR8s and a Porsche 911 (?). I'm always a bit reticent about these sorts of runs, concerned that they'll be a bit tame and slow. First impressions were that speed limits were being treated with just enough respect (that's good) and we made reasonable time to the end of the highway stretch before heading north up the good roads. Lots of nice fast twisty stuff and the TR8s didn't hold us up even if they were a little slow up the hills :-)
A nice coffee stop in Daylesford was the first chance to see just how many TR4s, 6s, 7s, 8s, Stags and even a GT6 (rare in Australia) had turned up. No sidescreens to be seen. I got talking to Barry (4a), Jim (Stag) and Geoff (7 in excruciatingly bright yellow). Barry is the first person i've ever met who unwittingly bought a car with overdrive. There was an unusual wiring set up and the seller didn't even know it was installed - it was only discovered on a rebuild (which has included some nice mods too).
Forgot the camera (again!) hence the dodgy phone shots.

The rest of the drive was less exciting, just the run into a festival at Ballarat. But it was interesting to see people's reaction to the Saloon - normally a bit looked down on as they're not 'sportscars', these guys seemed happy to see it, even if it was a bit scabbier than most of the TRs (yes even the wedges were 'pretty'). The TR8 owner was impressed by its 'go' and one of the owners said it sounded wonderful. I might have a crack at some sprints or regularities in the new year to see if I can soften them further on the saloon.

... and the slave cylinder seal held out and can be changed next weekend.

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