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OLaF Restoration No 2 Part 1

Darren Sharp

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Ok so it must have been the photo's. Olaf was purchased in October 2011 having had two previous owners one of whom was an older lady from North London who had him wax oiled from new and kept him beautifully maintained. by 2011 though Olaf had some serious mechanical ailments. He was my first six cylinder saloon having had Triumphs on and off since the early nineties and having graduated through Heralds (3), Spitfires (4), Dolomites,(3)' and a TR6. I bought him on the recommendation of CT members as a vehicle in which to complete the RBRR and 10CR in, having already done it in Spitfires and Dolomites. Shortly after his purchase I experienced 'spline lock' on a wet roundabout in Essex which necessitated the fitting of a pair of rebuilt driveshafts and some new underpants ! An epic boys day out from Essex to Cheddar Gorge and the Haynes Motor Museum in Sparkford was much enjoyed until the middle two pistons melted on the motorway. To his credit Olaf limped home on four and was subsequently fitted with one of Mr Barker's special recipe 2500cc high spec replacement engines. At this time, Olaf's body was inspected and held to be holding up well having only ever needed some attention to the R/N/S Jacking point and a small patch on the nearby sill bottom. Although the paintwork was  now flat and a little bruised in places. Olaf then took part in the 2012 RBRR which he finished well except that the auto box may have lost a few gears in the process . In stepped Nick Peskett who helped me to change Olaf from an Automatic to a manual O/D and then we swapped the Auto Differential for a PI item. Later the gearbox was uprated to a 28% reduction one from Mike Papworth who also replaced one of the drive shafts and the prop shaft. At this time Olaf was stripped and prepared for a repaint. He came out spectacularly shiny and featured at a number of car shows twice gracing the CT stand at Stoneleigh and Shepton Mallet.  

There followed daily use as my main car come rain or shine for the next four years, two Welsh tours, the 2013 10CR, many trips to the Isle of Wight, four HCR's, a couple of rallies and an unfortunate auto solo, (it's built for comfort and cruising not for racing around cones) and last year, the Coast to Coast run. Olaf has been a brilliant car and I am far to fond of him and he is now showing his age in the body department last year he scraped through another MOT and I was amazed that he got through again this year but it was not without the sucking of teeth that can accompany these occasions. Options were all considered.

  • Buy a better body and transfer all the mechanical bits
  • Bury head in sand
  • spend the same amount of money on the best one out there
  • put all the 'goodies' onto a Mk 1 shell.
  • Bite the bullet and pay up!

I have chosen the last option and Olaf is currently back with Nick in Essex. Work has started and currently the frilly front wings are being striped as well as the wheel tubs and rear wing bottom corners. It will all get much worse before it gets better and it will take a fair while so I should be able to download all the pics on here before its back! 

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