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Lucie: The vehicle

Mid -  2004. Part 1 of 1

If this article was a film, this would be a “Pre-sequel”.  Thanks to Peter Vowles, one of Lucie’s former keepers. I now have photos of Lucie before restoration started.

In 2004 the van was spotted at a Classic Car Show in Shepton Mallet (Cornwall) where Peter Vowles spotted her.  In the windscreen, partly as a joke, was a sign saying “Anyone prepared to take on this fine example of British Engineering”.  The car came was in bad condition but came with numerous spare parts and so  Mr. Vowles decided to purchase it as some of the parts would be useful for his 1947 Reliant.  It was touch and go for Lucie for a while though the decision was taken to restore Lucie and get her back on the road.  At the time though she was called “Jitterbug” and the plan was to restore her and paint her bright pink.  The restoration took some doing due to the amount of missing parts and a lot of parts have been made up from other vehicles like the steering rod made up from Triumph Herald track rods.  One of the biggest jobs was pulling the half shafts in the rear axle as there were broken studs each side.  Pretty much everything, including the engine, was stripped and rebuilt. A lot of the parts came from other vehicles with most of the electrics from a Triumph Herald and front indicators / side lights from a Morris Minor.

The car presented a few running problems, the biggest one being the coil as it would overheat.  As it was situated next to the manifold, it was moved to the other side of the engine bay and the problem was cured.

Go to August 2008


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