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The Lobby
Enjoy the blog this week with Billy Squire, Lonely is the Night

This heat won’t stop. Well, it did, sort of. But north of 100, during the day, doesn’t gel well with this mark, and life, frankly. 105 in Dallas is hot, but relative, cause 105 in phoenix may feel like 90. My inlaws live in Bull Head City, AZ. That’s across from Laughlin, NV. Retirement on one side of the Colorado River, Gaming excess on the other. 122 in the summer. And on a jet ski, on that river, the faster you go, the hotter it got, in that heat. Very odd.
Getting a few things done around the house – sadly, several rooms are my storage for my car repair – hard top glass wedged into sofa cushions, dining room table covered in dash parts. I need to sort all that before I find myself bunking in a hot garage.

Kids are good – oldest has the new covid strain. Just a bad head cold. Replacing a sprinkler head, light toilet repair. Work, family are good and we have a decent weekend ahead. Normally, this time of year, we are in Galveston for a week with 2 other families. This year had wrinkles, so we skipped, but will make it back to a beach next year. I hate that. I grew up near one, and miss it terribly.

Whats new
According to the shop, I should have a roller by mid August. If I plan on Lexington in September, I will need to have things ready to bolt on, or my thrashing will be into the night – have done that before, so why not. I am in the middle of a dash and windshield restoration, ordering some door panels from BobbyD, and sorting my steps for this car reassembly. Oh – I get new tires. At least the front ones. Those bent fenders cut into my 205x60x16 tires down to the belts. So, moving to 205x55x16 and Michelin pilot something from Walmart.

I’m at that point for decision time. I mean, I have until the last minute to decide on a few things, but I am leaning to the TR6 letters on the rear wings instead of the Union Jacks. I mean, there is this part of me, and you should know this by now, that just feeds on antagonism. This car, partially sorted, at a show, with some expert looking it over, bumper overriders, and those rear wing letters? Having to sit down and calm him or herself from how worlds are colliding in this vintage car.

Did you put gas in your car? Go do that, even if it’s a gallon.

The Wax
In my last installment of what still needs attention. The misconceptions

When I typed that, the very first thing that came to mind was …well, I won’t type the letters cause I don’t want to give any credit. Its 2 letters and its for this sad other brit car, and those letters stand for a person’s last name and where you got car repair done. The most common misconception is that this mark, is that mark. Or part of that mark. “Is that an $%?” We smile, grit teeth, and say the nicest thing we can think of. Until the fool moves along, but the irony is, the world slows down as this clown continues about their expertise and knowledge. Seconds seem like hours as they spout off leaks, electrical, comfort and price – that they paid back in the day. Thank you, no, this is a TR6, and today its more reliable than a Honda Accord. And that’s when they think you want to pick a fight. Especially when you say it in front of spouse or group. Sadly, while the other misconceptions tend to die off, this one is growing, simply from the fact that youth know about these cars thru friends of friends of friends of Lee Iacocca.

So, this can still happen – a engine bay fire. This isn’t tied to just our car or lucas -any old car, with old wires, gauges, and so on, simply don’t conduct as they were designed for. But LED is a savior in that the energy thru the pipes is dropping, so the load is less, therefore the risk is less. Still, we should tend to our wiring, replace a harness, or a connector, add wiring….whatever. We have discussed electrical a few times, and should keep that fire going as it is simply a good risk management exercise. The misconception is these cars have bad electrical problems and lucas sucks. The latter may be true, but we have worked thru most of the bad things, and are still improving the nagging stuff.

Late friend Jim Collier told me once that the only drip free brit car is one with no fluids in it. We have solved so much in the fluid-on-the-garage-floor stigma. From front to back, maybe 90% of it. We still have a few gremlins – the front and rear engine seals, but the rest is, or can be, bone dry.

That’s most of the misconceptions, right? I guess there are a few others – carbs, tune ups, running gear…..We can wax on that another time. If I keep typing, I’ll run out of space on this blog.

Tech: Fuse box
The Hermit
Throwback. Stunt car gearbox

Tech: Replace the fuse box
I know we have chatted this up before – but there are some items I feel like I need repeat, cause some miss it the first time, or frankly, we need to hear it more than once. I’m one of those, so forgive me for shaking the finger.

I have systems that stop working – typically, my overdrive and temp gauge. I think my fuel too, can’t remember. All are on this one fuse, so I go to the fuse box, pull the fuse, clean the contacts, and put the fuse back in. Perfect. For a day. Then it happens again. I go thru this routine until it finally stops – in other words, I clean further, or more, or I go to the contacts on the spades – on the outside where the wires plug in – and I clean those too. So, here’s a simple solution that works for concours all the way to upgrade. Replace the fuse box. 22 dollars. At The Roadster Factory. Not much is this simple. You could disconnect the battery, but I don’t know that you need to. That rig screws into the fender, and you can even use the old screws. New fuse box, even old fuses, plug the new box as the old one, mount it, and we may never have to talk about this again, right?
Here is the plate where to order the fuse and the cover – in fact, you probably still have a cover, so keep the old one. This assembly comes with a new cover, so you can use your old one if you want it to look original, or swap it out for a nice new one.

Good luck.

I always wonder what brings us together. I can stand at a Triumph meeting, event, pick one – and while I enjoy everyone, part of me looks around and thinks – if we didn’t have this car, I wonder if we would hang out normally. I know we are all kind, and if in public, would be kind to each other. But we have to remember that the car brings us together at events, widen’s our scope, expands our world. I’m on a bowling team, and I doubt I’d hang out with many of that circus folk. I love them, trust me, but its not my natural habitat. That sounds rude – cause it sounds like I live in a mansion, or in some ritzy area with kids in private school. Its none of that.

As we try to grow our local Dallas group, I’ve always said, drive down any street, and in one of those garages, there is a TR6. This mark is everywhere, certainly in our modest town. That is a stretch. But I will put money on that fact that there are more TR6s in any given city that isn’t part of a car club. Running or not, they are hidden. The hidden sports car. What causes that?

Is it a stigma? I mean, I can go under hypnosis and start mumbling what I remember only thru that facility, but there is something about this mark that says – yeah, I really don’t want to hang out with you. Or anyone. That is almost hard to type, or even say out loud. But I can go back and remember owners like this. The bearded skinny guy at that foreign autoparts store with the sienna hard top car – selling dad and I tune up parts, and sharing zero – I mean zero – about his journey with his TR6. I mean, dude – give us something. We did business with you only because you park that car out front. We drove past 5 auto parts stores to meet you, do business with you, and hear the words of Yoda. One sentence answers. Then, our receipt and change.

This mark is catnip to the introvert. At least I think so. A car popped up this week for sale on TR6 Marketplace on fb – car is maybe 10 miles from me. No club member, no affiliation with anything, including 6pack. It has every upgraded I know of. I mean his bullet points on the stuff he did to the car was at least 2 page down’s on my laptop. Endless. I mention this because without a club, or 6 pack membership, how do you know about goodparts roller rockers, or the r200 diff? or the HDVA 5 speed? He has it all, and is selling it. Even typing this, I am still shocked on how anyone could live in a cave, and still push out a car like that. And lovely to boot.

I take this listing on marketplace and wave it around – See? This mark is everywhere. Its down the street from you. In a garage with boxes stacked on the hood. Its dirty, and still has old leaded gas in the tank. Or, its polished up, but never leaves the driveway. Who knows. But just because we hang out together and talk shop doesn’t mean everyone with this car wants to. Or even feels the need to.

Throwback. The Gearbox
Each time I get to this section I think – what have I missed. Or, should I reshare something. There are a few that I think help others – like discovering this car for the first time – sitting in our driveway, after school, and putting the top down for the first time. That moment of zen when you connect with a TR6 for the first time. Maybe I’ll share that again in a few weeks. Today, I’ll share one that I don’t think I’ve share before. Having our gearbox rebuilt on the 72 stunt car.

I share this story for a couple of reasons – one is the closure I need to get over this pain, and the other is to remind everyone what it was like trying to find a mechanic partner while Triumph was still around. In my small town, we find a local foreign car shop to work on the car – they rebuilt the motor, which I have shared before. All sorts of service there, including trunions and rear hub brackets, which cracked down the bolt axis. When we leave NC for TX, we are alone with this car. We find a british mechanic while looking for a paint and body shop. The mechanic and the painter shared a warehouse in a car repair jungle in Dallas, off Harry Hines. Paul Mellinger. Who probably isn’t with us anymore – he was a seasoned old guy at the time, and had a decent business, mostly sedans – Jags and Bentleys – the old stuff. That pulls at you like, he must be good. Well, the quality was fine – it was his method that bothered us. You see, when the gearbox finally gave out – His solutions was to rebuild it. At the time, we don’t think about the efficiency. I shared also before the diff journey – with the broken tabs. Instead of repairing it – which we did – get one from a yard for 200. This gearbox issue was the same – replace it with a used one.

I’m back from college in NC, with friends over the summer, when Paul calls me to share this bad news about the gearbox – even says to this 19 year old – I hope you are sitting down. 1500 dollars to rebuild this box. In 1982. After I hang up, I have to call dad. This was a big pill to swallow, which we did, and I don’t recall having any further issues, except that it leaked a little. And that bugged me, liked dude – you just went thru this whole box, and its leaking? His response was it was just a drop and the drop spreads, stop worrying about it. So, 2 foolish british car stewards, trusting someone, not doing enough homework, or tackling the problem. Today, we share, and talk and even learn stuff. If my gearbox failed, I might get one locally, or on ebay. I might have it rebuilt, or I might go HDVA. We have better choices now, and we have better knowledge today. I shouldn’t be so hard on us – but I can’t help it. I know writing about it helps me, and I hope it helps others in that category of what not to do. Regardless, the memory of that car, as rough as it was, was an overall great experience, and filled with great memories.

See you on down the road,

That’s enough for today
Thank you for caring for your Triumph TR6, and a special thanks to those considering one. This is a great mark for young and old. This mark is blessed with an amazing network of owners, experts and suppliers. Your TR6 helps people around you, without you even knowing it. You bring happiness to the man and woman leaving the restaurant. 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 regularly. And please drive your 6 defensively, as if it was a 4 wheeled Harley.

And remember. Smile when you drive, and whenever possible, take a kid driving.

Please join me and the journey here:

I am the steward of CF50460UO, born September 1975 with current paint code 19 and 11 black interior. Nicknamed “the school car”, is now over 100K in miles, in the paint shop, moving to Cayman Blue Mica 2 stage paint. I am the 3rd steward. Car was delivered with original hard top and factory overdrive. Current upgrades include Volvo overdrive gearing, König Rewind 16x7 rims, Falken 205s, 4Runner calipers and 7/8 rear wheel cylinders. Poolboy carbs, FlexAlite electric fan, Patton Machine Fan Eliminator, Pertronix ignitor ignition, TR5 cam, pacesetter header, 70amp Lucas direct fit alternator, Silverstar Halogen headlights, WBC blueprinted oil pump, Bastuck 9LB 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. Adding Vietnam bumpers, flip up scuttle vent, hidden antenna, window tint, custom gear knob, and several more bits

My to do list
New carpet, new panels, custom dash.
r200B diff with goodparts cv joints and hubs
fresh head with roller rockers.
At some point, a fresh motor with lightened crank, cam bearings,
Hard top inside insulation, and dome light.
Oh, and AC.