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The Lobby
Enjoy the blog this week with Elton John, The Bitch is Back. ZZZOK5B5H

My Kraco 8 Track retro, installed in the school car, was a fun time. Buying up 8 tracks from Half Price Books for a dime, driving up the price on 8 tracks alone as if I was a Hunt brother cornering a market. In 6 months, those 8 tracks went to 25 cents. If you leave an 8 track on a shelf for 40 years, that tape don’t play so good. Some 8 tracks play better than others, and my Caribou 8 track was one that played very well on that 8 watt stereo. So that cartridge, and this song played a lot in the school car when I drove it.

Feels like I am in car service mode. Spending a lot of time on the 99 tahoe, prepping that for a handover for a teen driver. I forgot how much I enjoyed that boat. Oh, I broke my starter last week – went to start it twice by mistake, and the gears must have meshed – clunk – like, damn. Well, the starter worked, but sound like springs had popped out of it. So, swapped that, oil change and some other bits with my new mecca for modern car service. And I might let this shop do my r200B diff install. I have found a new Chris Hampton, so the stars are lining up for me again.

Family is good, work is good. My garage is cleaner. Even my fitness is good – I never talk about that. I lost 40 pounds this year since May. Big change in lifestyle, eating home made soup for lunch almost every day. Our girls are off on trips this holiday weekend. Youngest is at the beach with her friends, oldest in Stillwater for her alma mater game today. Me, the D6 bruncheon breakfast gathering on Saturday, the OSU game with Tech, and few honeydoos around the house this weekend in very comfy Dallas weather.

Whats new
Well, its not back in the garage, but close. Paint is done. Front end bumper, grille, spoiler back on the car at the shop, then back to the house this week. I went to the shop on Saturday, got a a short vid of a walk around. Those reassembly items should take a day, and then on the flatbed, hardtop in my tahoe, along with the bent panels and that spare front valance. I’ll have spares, and may have mentioned, I’ll post those items on TR6 Marketplace.

The garage, clear enough to roll that rig in, and we start the process that I’ve shared here a dozen times like my grandfather telling the same joke over and over. More new parts on order – I have a few left, this one for the headlamp assemblies.

As always, the diary of the The School Car Wreck Blog is here
Stewards, I regret to inform but I ran a red light, and tagged a VW Passat. No injuries, and we are already working on getting the school car back together and pointed straight. cheers #guvnal

Did you put gas in your car? Go do that, even if it’s a gallon. And please drive with your lights on – we need all the visibility we can get with other motorists.

Lets have a pint
Pull up a chair, and lets have a pint together.

I’ve written a lot on this year, its impression for me. Its almost a new day for this commission number. Change comes at us in so many forms in our lives. We adapt to anything. I have my priorities together and my wife comes into our spare bedroom 22 years ago and tells me she is pregnant. Instantly, my life changed, stuff that was so important, not even on the shelf from that moment on. This wreck was somewhat like that, except that I knew we would have children. You don’t know that you will have a wreck, although its possible each time we bump that starter.

In younger days, I was handy. I could build things, and enjoyed using my hands. Maybe not as handy as some, certainly not as technical as many of the works TR6 guys on 6pack, but I have this engineering brain that likes to solve stuff. I look back at redoing my dash in college – I mean, I didn’t have a manual, I just started unscrewing stuff, reaching behind the dash for those J hooks on the gauges, cleaning glass, marking wires, and so on. Before this collision, I was content on handing my car over for any service. Today, I am faced with minor restoration from bumper to bumper. I could let the shop do all of it, but I didn’t send them a car that had all the stuff on it, and I’d like to do some of this myself. In other words, I’m using my hands again.

I got inspired to make a gear shift knob out of leftover wood flooring. I join a woodturning group, learn to turn on a wood lathe, and now I have a custom gear knob. I’ll do custom trunk liner stuff when the car returns, and I’ll even make a rear interior panel that is 1 piece instead of 3. I’ll have a hood release on the passenger side. I will have learned how to apply car vinyl wrap. None of this stuff – and I mean none of it, would have happened if I hadn’t bent the school car. Before, comfortable with a car that the ignition switch would fall out, and a driver seat diaphragm that had collapsed. Telling you, me, and everyone that I’ll get to that next week. Well, its next week, and I’m out of my chair, doing stuff again. Blessings come in many ways, don’t they.

Ok – on the rest of this ramble.

Tech: Ignition
Supply and Demand
Throwback. 1984 F1 Dallas

Tech: Ignition Switch
Been pondering this for a while, and I think I finally have a solution. Most TR6 switches fit into the back of the column housing. My 72 and 76 cars are like this. The 69 crowd have a switch in that plinth area, old school. But mine, and most of us, have this tiny screw that holds our switches in this housing. Switch goes in, and you take that tiny screw, and screw it through the housing, into the switch. Simple design. Easy for a teen or child with small hands, great eyes, and coordination. Like anything Nigel the Coventry engineer came up with, no downfield consideration. Doubtful even Nigel even tried to replace the switch in a finished car – most likely, he sat at a desk with the housing on stand of sorts, and he had great light and plenty of extra screws.

These screws aren’t available. I’ve tried other tiny screws. They failed after a week, falling out due to fitment. I considered a paper clip, bent end, poked thru, electrical tape around the whole thing. I know I am not the only one with this dilemma, and for those that still have their screw, you should have a plaque on your wall reading something to the effect – Survivor of the Switch Screw Dilemma.

So here is my epiphany. Hardware store. Buy three 4-40 cap head screws that are ¾ inch long. Find a drill bit that is slightly smaller than this screw. With the switch out of the housing, drill out the screw hole, resizing it. There are 2 holes in the bottom, only 1 is accessible, but in case you can get to the other hole, drill that out too. I think 1 will work, but just anticipating. Take two of these bolts, chuck them in a drill with the head inside the drill so the tip is sticking out. Spin the drill on high speed, hold a file against the end to form a tip, maybe 45 degree angle. Take the 3rd bolt and file down the first few threads to create a simple tap, using this same method with your drill. With this tap, screw that threw the newly resized housing hole until it bottoms out. This will tap the hole for those other screws. Remove the tap screw, put the switch into the housing, and screw in 1 of the new tip screws. The switch can only go in one way, so the holes will be lined up. The new tip shape of this screw will center into the switch hole, and the threads will keep the screw in place. We might need some blue Loctite on this, but I think that metal should be fine as long as we don’t over tighten. The trick here is to just center the screw, get it in place to lock the switch and stop. No need to wedge it, or overtighten.

Good luck, McGiver

Demand Bubbles
Driving around, I realize half the cars I see need repair. Is that because there is a shortage of new cars? Even new cars have crushed bumper corners. Or a Bend in a door. And then I think, are these cars leased? Maybe a few. And for those that are, how do you manage that when the lease is up? My point here is, these cars, wrecked, insurance claims, estimates, checks cut, and the owner/leasee chose not to fix the car, but cash the check. This is single opinion, based solely on my observations. But if true, this would be a great time to start a body shop.

When the school car needed a shop, all were too busy. Even the one I ended up using was swamped with work every week. Body shops are everywhere, but I assume there aren’t enough. When good friend Rick, owner of Rite-Co in Rockwall told me to take a number, well, that’s good enough for me and this ramble. I looked up the leading cause of wrecks and its distracted driving. Laws can help curtail this, but people will continue to look down at that text or tiktok video.

This upside down transportation world where used cars are 3 times what they should sell for, cannot continue. It will bust at some point, but in the meantime, the industry and the consumer, will see a new wave after the dust settles. Fossil will be hard to push out, common sense will prevail, but watching this circus today, you’d think that the whole world was under hypnosis. I think fossil continues for a while, regardless of the green energy push, but in this new automotive transport world, we might see a change to dealerships, and certainly to the service industry. I’m not going to open a body shop, but that industry has to be increasing if that stat is true.

Throwback. The Circus in Town, 1984
There is a chance I blogged about this before. If I did, it was in that era of the blog where my content got cut off. Those early years were impacted by the 6pack website merge to a new platform, and I assume there was a volume restriction on how much moved over. All my blog beginnings are there, but the throwbacks were cut off. I guess that gives me some freedom to relive some of that. Regardless, this skip down memory lane is about the F1 show, and landing in Dallas.

Detroit was a stop for F1 at that time. Downtown, city streets, popular. In the big picture, F1 had downsized from US East and West to this venue, and 2 cattle rustlers decided to step up and woo Bernie Ecclestone. The buildup was all Texan, as Larry Waldrup and Don Walker went to Monaco, schmoozed Bernie and everyone else in F1, put up some money from somewhere, and got the event for July. You can google these tools, and my light reading just now on these charlatans paints a much kinder picture than what I remember happening. They hosted the event, then, when it was time to renew and pay Bernie, they took the pile of cash, and vanished. Like to France or somewhere. Dallas, stuck with a hole, and Bernie insisting he would never return – and rightly so. But what an event. Drama everywhere.

I won’t go into great detail, but the track was around the state fair, and laid out by some friend of a friend of a friend of Tom Landry. That’s made up, but the lay out was a joke. What was worse was these clowns thinking these 800-900 horsepower cars would not plow up the pavement. Which they were doing in every corner. Hot like you can’t believe, I remember seeing Eddie Cheever, shirtless, sitting, head almost between his knees, exhausted from session. Dry ice packed around the fuel tanks, as there was no refueling that year. Elio DeAngelis, sitting in the garage, foot up, wrapped from an injury and crash. And Keke Rosberg navigating thru it all, including Mansell pushing his car to the finish line cause he ran out of gas.

As bad as that event was, it was a blast for me. I have some photos of Alain Prost, Lauda, many others, up close in the hot pit area. My first F1 race. Family had good seats, and pit passes thru my dads work. I even got to meet Rosberg at an oil barrons event the week before. F1 drivers are tiny, let me just say that. Racing would return to Dallas, but in very limited form, starting in the same area as the F1 track, moving to an airport venue in north dallas by the time it finished. Today, good circle and road racing at Texas Motor Speedway, and F1 now stable in the hill country of Texas. As long as Bernie is still around this sport, don’t expect those cars to be anywhere near Dallas.

That’s enough for today. See you on down the road,

Thank you for caring for your Triumph TR6. Lets also thank those considering one. This is a great mark for young and old. This mark is blessed with an amazing network development, parts, owners, experts and car availability. A TR6 helps people everyday, lifting spirits, bringing smiles. A TR6 brings happiness to Lynn, a previous owner, missing her car. Please start your car with it out of gear and foot off the clutch to save your thrust washers – they struggle with oiling at start up. 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.

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A collection of music related to my TR6 experience. Music before, during and after production of the car, and music that reminds me of either of the 2 that I...

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I am the 3rd steward of CF50460UO, born September 1975 with paint code 19 and 11 black interior. Nicknamed “the school car”, is now over 100K in miles, with new Cayman Blue Mica 2 stage paint, and 11 interior. Car was delivered with original hard top and factory overdrive. Current upgrades include Volvo overdrive internals, König Rewind 16x7 rims, Michelin Pilot Sport 205.55.16s, 4Runner calipers and 7/8 rear wheel cylinders. Poolboy carbs, FlexAlite electric fan, Patton Fan Eliminator, Pertronix ignitor ignition, TR5 cam, pacesetter header, 70amp Lucas direct fit alternator, solid state Rheostat, Silverstar Halogen headlights, Wishbone 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, high torque starter, JVC Bluetooth audio with front and rear USB, 4 speakers, stainless steel bumpers, flip up scuttle vent, hidden antenna, window tint, custom gear knob, and other concours frustrations.

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 square motor with lightened crank, cam bearings,
Hard top inside insulation, and dome light.
Oh, and AC.