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Lucie: The vehicle

April - June 2013  Part 1 of 1

With the completion of the new A-Z of Three-Wheelers book at the end of April there was a bit more free time again.  In April Lucie went for her annual MOT and passed with flying colours.  The MOT man also commented that cars like Lucie will probably be the oldest he sees now as in the UK a new law has been passed that states that an vehicle manufactured before 1960 does not require a MOT.  With Lucie being a 1961 vehicle she unfortunately just misses this.  That say, I say unfortunately whilst a MOT can be an unpleasant thing depending on any faults find, it also acts as a good third party check on the vehicle that highlights any potential issues with it.  One thing that was highlighted at the MOT last year is that the rubber grommit around the petrol filler cap was badly cracking due to old age.  Finding a new one would be an almost impossible task though about 3 years ago Wilfried Dibbets made one up using silicone sealant for his Mk 6 saloon and he gave me one of the spare ones he made.  It fitted in minutess as the back of the filler pipe is easy to get to from inside the van.  The new one was not such a tight fit as the old one that squirting in an extra dose of silicone sealant to take up the slack worked well and as a result it passed through the MOT without comment.

Regular readers will know that Lucie has had a cough for far too long now, on some days she will run absolutely fine and on others she will do a mile or so and they develop a periodic misfire.  It only ever seems to happen when she gets ho, so on a cold day she is happier far longer. As I have already changed the headgasket, fitted a new carburetor, new spark plugs and new HT leads etc, my next task has been (for ages) to replace the coil.  I bought one for her a couple of years ago and one one sunny day in May finally got around to fitting it and indeed changing the plug in type HT lead to the coil to the old fashioned screw in type as the coil (like the distributor) now has a screw in lead.  I also planned to replace the coil until I found out that the new coil I bought (also a few years ago) was a different sort.  So I thought I’d leave that for now, reset the gap on the points, cleaned the spark plugs and took her out for a test drive.   It was quite a hot day and all seemed fine, in fact so much so that I made an additional lap of the usual circuit a round Tamworth and then after a few miles, cough, splutter.  It seemed that replacing the coil has helped a bit but there is still a cough there that appears after a few miles so I shall have to investigate a bit more.

Elvis Payne.

June 2013

Go to July 2013

With the petrol filler pipe removed the cracks in the existing grommit were very apparent.

The homemade replacement made from silcone.

New old fashioned type coil for screw in HT leads.

Bonnet up for much awaited TLC.


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