Really enjoyed our 3rd gathering of D6. Pulled a complete Stromberg apart, went into my 2 weeks of karate on the pieces laying on the bar table. What is lovely is the consensus of who and what Ken/poolboy is to this mark. Its great to be able to disassemble, reassemble a willy wonka machine, but its entirely different to think that when assembled, it’s a well sorted fuel delivery system. But people – me included, have this fear of this rig – and having a spare to tear down, and poke around on – is healthy, if just for my brain. More to come on those meetings, our facebook group, and members coming in from all over.
Its gross and grey outside, which comes with the January territory of Dallas.

Whats new
Still tinkering with my ignition switch. I popped the clutch to make that meeting – and to leave too. I know between that switch and that starter, is a connection issue. I suspect jumper in my 75 seat harness….whatever the hell that thing is under the dash near the glovebox. RatRidge Jim is helping me test a few things and I will get to those soon, Jim, I promise. I have my color coded wiring diagram out, which helps me trace and relearn some things. I took my pdf to office max a few years ago. Enlarged it. Laminated it. And keep it rolled up like a tube in the car. In case that helps someone.

Tech tip. Starting out of gear
The Lure
Throwback. Finding Leland Heath

Tech tip. Foot off the clutch
I’m adding this tidbit to the blog cause I might be the only one enjoying my ramblings. At least I can pay back with some commentary about stewarding this mark. I added this first tip to my the blog signature a while back. I replaced my thrust washers like many of us have. I ended up having someone do this cause that rear cap seems easy to replace, but I was worried about orientation, and just stuff I am not trained to do. But thickness, types, and even how to remove them – all interesting stuff, including engine design and the lack of oiling in that area.

The consensus is – and this is arguable – is to always start the car with the car out of gear, and foot off the clutch. Clutch pressure pushes the flywheel? Pushes the crank forward, and squishes the thrust washers on the rear of that main brace, I reckon. With no significant….or even oil at all, back there, its metal on metal until oil finally gets there, and when you take your foot off the clutch. I mean, can it hurt to make this a practice? We have to understand these are not Honda accord motors. They aren’t designed to go 500K miles without an engine rebuild. At 70K, the manual suggests you replace the main bearings. Do that for the rod bearings too, while you are in there. But think about that 70K. I mean, I think most are lucky to get to 100K without any significant work. Tolerances, wear, engine design, all come together for heavier than normal wear by today’s standard. Normal as in what we are used to with modern cars running 0-20 weight oil.

So, my personal tip to you, and it might take a while to get used to – handbrake, left foot on the brake – maybe no foot on the gas, with the choke out. Bump that starter, let the choke back in a touch, a good 30 seconds of warm up? Then maybe a foot on the clutch, select a gear, and ease away.

The TR6 magnet
I don’t think I am the only reluctant steward of this mark. I am pretty sure it’s a small club. I am jealous of those smitten. As in, from the beginning. I caught some of that on my second one – and it was almost paralyzing. My hobbies tend to be that way. It is exciting and warm when you read a prospective owner speak up. There is addictive undertone. Almost like a new member at AA. Hi, I’m LO Guvna, and I am a TR6aholic. You can feel the energy in their words – almost see their eyes light up.

The filters of vintage cars….starts with that first filter – why an old car? Why not woodworking? And then, why corvette, mustang, or even if you are a triumph person, why this TR? German’s love David Hasselhoff, so says Norm Macdonald of Saturday Night Live. They also love the TR6. So says me. I base that on demand rumors of a burst in popularity in the 90s to buy US models and ship them to Germany. Each mark has a following, and I have no idea how that works or why. It’s a bit defining. Those that are smitten, love the styling, sound, stance. What else. There is something, much more actually, and I can’t put my finger on it. Maybe its that. And for those that don’t like the car, hit the bruises quickly – lucas, leaks, and the ability to run. If they really want to punch, they call it an MG.

Today, the gremlins are fading. The lure builds. The mystique grows. And to see someone who never had the bug before, find interest now. Always a fan, or at least aware of the mark, stepping up, standing, embracing their fear of first saying they want one, and then facing their fear of buying one. Thinking they are alone. There is so much we want to say to them on a thread, or in person – we end up talking so fast or so much that we sound psychotic and scare them away. Our jobs as stewards are not only to take care of the ones we own, but the ones someone else does, or will.

First 6, first owner
That tired 72 car that sucked me into this rabbit hole lives in my memory, and will most likely be the subject of ramblings as I age into that bliss of old man. From wth is this, and why did we buy this, to I don’t know much about any other car. We were the 3rd owner, and all I knew at first about the car was that the previous owner took a stock 6 and modified it. Light mods, exhaust and tires, best I can remember. I don’t think there was much engine performance available for the car during production. Maybe. If so, Johnny didn’t know about it. And why he painted it **** blue I will never know.

Either with paperwork or some light investigation, we found who bought the car from the dealership. A chevy dealer, local, which eventually was purchased by my high school friend Don’s family. Its what drug Don and his family from Detroit to Kinston. Almost witness relocation program – to think of that now, is still odd. Why Kinston? Anyway, Leland Heath, a young lawyer, had just passed the bar. He purchased the car, new, in Kinston at this dealership, and sold it soon afterward to Johnny. In 4 years, we were the 3rd owner, with 50K miles on it as we drove off with it, parts falling off in my memory just to make this appropriate.

I know Leland’s name, and we know he lived in Kinston when we did, and stayed there as we moved away. It wasn’t until 2011 that I made any attempt to find this guy. The internet is helpful in this regard, but come on. I could have found Leland anytime if I tried. I call. He answers. And we spend 20 minutes talking this car. At this point, retired, and a Methodist pastor. I share general things about the car, and how we restored it. I don’t tell him the fun stories. Genuine, lovely man. Foolishly, we often ignore time, or the big picture. And it hits you. When you think about him again, like this weekend, google his name again, and find his obituary in 2018. All I can think of now is – maybe this blog, and others I have written about it may provide some warmth to a good family, and how his purchased helped me. So my next few moves after this blog is to find his family and share some of this with them.

That’s enough for today
Your Triumph TR6 is a great diplomat. You help people around you with this car without even knowing it. You bring happiness, and thumbs up, leaving a memory with a guy in a truck on his way to work. You are a steward, responsible for it, and to it. Please start the car with it out of gear and foot off the clutch. This helps save your thrust washers, which have poor oiling at startup. So, smile when you drive, and whenever possible, take a kid driving.

L.O Guvna