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The Lobby
Enjoy the blog this week with James May, and the Honda Clarity

Expecting some vintage rock, huh? Me too. This week, with world tensions, oil supplies, lithium mine concerns, and everything else including covid, I thought I would share this clip from 2007. I’ll chat more on it in The Wax.

A good week, except for the freezing rain and the 1 day shut down that hit Dallas on Thursday. More delays for my car repair, but that’s ok – I have a lot to work on with trim clean up anyway. Family is good, business is healthy, enough firewood, and plenty of beer nearby. I must say, confine anyone for any length of time, and the claws can come out. They haven’t here at the Guvna compound. I don’t know if I should be proud or scared.

Whats new: wreck update. 2.19.22
At some point, the front clip dismantle begins. The first round of parts are in, I think. I need to get with Alex on the front valance as the replacements don’t have the clip for the finisher – either read that somewhere, or noticed it. I need to show Alex where those tabs are now, let them recreate and weld new on, and move on. I’m ready to start sourcing the next round of parts – should be good with those parts as most should be available in the TR6underground. Or at the supply houses. Who knows.

I have had a good week of bits and pieces clean up. My write up last week on the bullet mirror – the new replacement mirror is in, and is really nice. On the backside of the original mirror, there is some double stick tape I think to keep the spring in place. I will Permatex Right Stuff instead. Sharing for those reading along, but for the original bullet owners, replacing this simple glass improves the experience.

I may not get a full engine bay spray, and I won’t lean on Alex to do that. But he will get front fenders, inner and outer, and everything up to the firewall. I think I can handle that with my touch up spray, and do that in sections, at home, akin to ChefTush and his 250 project. So much going thru the brain right now. I have a rough draft of sequence, but when that clock starts, I may panic and throw that out the door. It helps to trust others, and right now, with Alex at Sure Shot Collision.

The Wax
Back to the Honda Clarity. I have blogged on this car before, but it has been years since I wrote this up. What inspired to write on it was a blurb on one of the news outlets that Toyota and GM, where they are working again on hydrogen fuel. The clip at the top of the blog is a portion of the whole segment, a good 15 minutes, finishing with these old farts talking about the evolution of transportation. In the whole clip – which is blocked by the BBC, James May is in Los Angeles, talking cars with Jay Leno. Celebrities were allowed to rent this car for 500 a month. Each unit was near a million in price tag. But to take transportation away from fossil, to process hydrogen, and deliver an electric car that has water out the tailpipe, well, that is a great concept. Batteries are not the answer. Electric motor – yes, and to make it operate, yes. We aren’t there with solar for obvious reasons. But this marriage may end up being the solution.

A machine, that will still need oil products like lube, but lives better in the eco system – that is the solution. Battery power is going backwards, sorry. While cars are the dartboard, the culprit are coal plants, and the big producers. Like Tesla who was muscled out in mass electrical service, money and influence will drive the future direction. I marvel at Tesla, and how amazing that car is. But those toxic batteries…..I mean, there is no positive downfield. Its all now, and the pops and whistles of the left and right, media, all distract from the issue. And this is as political or non TR6 as I will ever get. What we know is, if given to some of us, we could motor on with vintage cars and have a harmony of travel with water spitting hydrogen powered electric cars.

Tech: Tail lights
More resto
70s driving

Tech: rear lights
I won’t be sharing too much Aha! Here. But, I will share what I am doing, and thinking about. I have both assemblies off, one apart. Like everyone, the lenses are cleaned up, and polished. I have new mount cushion, thanks to D6 J.D. Miller. We are in this window of LED and I am prepping for that. When you think in those terms, you look at your assemblies differently. I do anyway. I look at the entire assembly as if – all of it can be brighter and more effective. With my 72 car, I had those off at one point, found out how to use rubbing and polishing compound, and took old outside plastic back to a shine. My 72 reverse lenses were opaque – even then, they “whited” up and weren’t clear. I thought the lens was supposed to look like that, so I left it alone. To improve reflection, I added aluminum foil to my turn signal domes, and also under that reflective section. Today, I am planning on replacing the unreflective silver sections in the lenses, and making them more rigid. My turn signal domes are very clean and very reflective, so just polishing those. But my brake lights – I think that whole area needs help for everyone. I’ve seen pics of our systems under braking. In some pics, its like a tiny red dot on the back of the car. I think that whole area needs lighting in that whole rectangle.

The last thing I’ll say that I am suggesting is inside the lenses – the rubber seals take up a lot of space. You only need to seal the edges, and this might improve the lighting and reflection. More to come on all of this. One last tidbit – I am using some of my 88 ford escort tail light assembly lessons learned on that to help on this.

Resto continued
Friend Rob is restoring a 70s El Camino. His neighbors car that he bought new. Rob has been watching this car for years, and as the gent is retiring, agrees on a price, and takes it away. Rob is hard to describe. Take Gas Monkey guy and feed him 10 espresso’s. Has a contemporary Camaro with 1000 or so at the rear wheel. Addicted to speed and power. We talk this El Camino at a superbowl party. Simple, clean resto mod. Crate LS and gearbox, fuel injection, and everything else that comes with gutting and reassembling with a nice original color paint job. And in the leftover pile is the 327 that was in the car. 40K in all this including the purchase price, and if it rolls over mecum, 50K, so upside even before he turns the key.

I still watch powernation daily – but not in big chunks. I’m up to speed on a few projects, and some of them are a few years old, but the world we are in now, pushes us in TR6nation to at least be aware of survival. Rob never once considered pulling that car apart and cleaning that original carb and tank. He knows to run that car, and have it function with today’s standards, it has to have FI. My car, in a body shop, won’t run for a month or so. In that time, unless I go run the bowls dry, the gremlins will get out their picks and hammers and begin eating away at the guts of my strombergs. Once back on the road, a week or so of stumbling, and then consistent driving again. Hopefully.

Throwback. The 70s
Staying with this energy theme, I started drifting back on what it was like to drive this car in the 70s, during production. I’ll spend this week with some of that – around town, gas prices, oil changes, etc.

Before the 80s, fuel was cheap, and leaded. I think there were unleaded pumps for choice, but I ran leaded regular gas. 81 cents a gallon. It was nice to fill up for less than 10 dollars, especially as a teenager. I should mention, this is eastern NC, so my 81 cents was higher in other areas, lower in Texas, I suppose. Looking back, the little things I focused on were different than today. Under the hood, for example. Today, I will check the oil level, check the carbs, the air cleaners, and I might pull a plug occasionally to test. I’ll also, today, dump my overflow bottle, and replace with fresh coolant. Back then? I don’t remember lifting the bonnet, unless the car wouldn’t start. I don’t think I considered an oil change until the oil change shops started to open up. The strombergs were a dark science. I guess I pulled the dip stick.

What worked on this car then were the header and blower motor, turn signals, brake lights, and reverse lights. There was less rust or corrosion around the contact points in that tail light assembly then. My pop up vent worked well, as did my trip odometer reset. My rheostat worked, and I don’t remember having it all the way up, but I do remember the blue hue and the ability to see the gauges. That’s simply eyesight. My gauge bulbs didn’t work then, so the only way I could tell if my blinkers worked was by listening to the relay popping.

I liked washing the car, and waxing it. I’ve mentioned this chit paint job on the car, but after a wax, it looked pretty good. There was no Armorall then. I think STP made something, and by college I used that on some surfaces. I was on goodyear low profile, whitewall, then later on my Michelin redlines. Tires then, looked normal without the dressing. I should note my soft top – it was white, and I’ve shared pics of this car in the driveway, but that bit is hard to notice. A white amco top, with the silver stripe – wishing now I would have packed that in some sealed plastic. When we painted the car back to white, I installed a black robbins top – there was nothing wrong with that top. It just looked odd on a white car.

Car care is better today. Approach to maintenance is stronger – the awareness is better. I can remember thinking American cars didn’t need maintenance, as if they were made better post war. The impression then of routine fiddling was a mark of a poorly made car. Sure, we had and have some of that. We weren’t in the mindset then of preserving this mark. It was a car that we would drive until we got the next car. This happens with anything, frankly. The bell curve of contemporary to collectible never changes. The collectible does, but in our case, we are on the backside of that curve, with plenty of life left in it and us.

That’s enough for today
Thank you for caring for your Triumph TR6, and a special thanks to those considering one. Owning this car isn’t scary and you have an amazing network around to help you. Your TR6 helps people around you, without even knowing it. You bring happiness to the someone pausing at your parking spot. Please start your car with it out of gear and foot off the clutch to save your thrust washers. Please pop your hood and have a good look around the engine bay. Please put fresh gas in your car each week, even if just 1 gallon. Please have good insurance, and review your policy today.

And I always say. Smile when you drive, and whenever possible, take a kid driving.

See you on down the road,

L.O Guvna

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I am the steward of CF50460UO, born September 1975 with paint code 19 and black interior. Nicknamed “the school car”, is now over 100K in miles, with the original paint. I am the 3rd steward. Car was delivered with original hard top and factory overdrive. Current upgrades include Volvo overdrive gearing, Konig Rewind 16x7 rims, Falken 205s, 4Runner calipers and 7/8 rear wheel cylinders. Poolboy carbs, FlexAlite electric fan, pertronix ignitor ignition, TR5 cam, pacesetter header, 70amp Lucas direct fit alternator, Silverstar Halogen headlights, WBC blueprinted oil pump, Bastuck 9 pound flywheel, Goodparts suspension on all 4 corners, Goodparts sway bar, Goodparts trailing arm brackets, Uprated Armstrong lever shocks with cycle fork oil, JVC audio with 4 speakers, high torque starter, solid state Rheostat, pending LED dash gauges.
My wish list: r200B diff with goodparts cv joints and hubs, fresh head with roller rockers, new interior, and new paint. At some point, a fresh motor with lightened crank, cam bearings, improved compression and roller rocker valve train. Oh, and AC.