Happenings since I finished number 7 – Thursday 16th January, sick of being fobbed off by the Port Authority where the body is for steam cleaning so approached the shippers about the possibility of moving it to another place. MAF Ok’d this so it was shifted to Ag,Stop, what a different in attitude, I was asked to be there at 8 am the next day to unpack and prepare it so they could do the job. All done by 10.00 so it was arranged to have it delivered to our place on Saturday using a truck with a Hyab.

Set to immediately to alter and strengthen the base of what was left of the crate to use as a dolly, (it had come with 4 large casters, by the holes in the middle it started out with 6 but the centre two have been torn out and lost in transit) and lifted the body 6″ so the sills can be scraped. It is now 4th Feb and my wife and I have spent many hours scraping and sanding so I can now describe what we have bought.

Ex factory the car must have been burgundy and at some future time has been repainted British Racing Green. In general there seems to been no serious accidents but over the years many minor dings that have just been bogged over leaving the glass with cracks, these will have to be ground out and properly repaired. The serious part of the fire damage was what I expected but what was describe as scorched paint was in fact paint baked right through to the glass and this covered most of the body. The baking had the effect of causing the paint to harden like concrete and is very difficult to remove. The bonnet has at least 6 areas of serious stress cracks and these are only the ones I have investigated, pity as it fits really great. Will use the one off the original car if it fits OK. Even though the boot lid seems sound it is badly burnt so will use the one off the old car. The worst find was that the bottoms of the “A” posts had completely rusted away, this was never mentioned and seeing the condition of these I hate to think what the chassis it came off of is like. The fastenings for the “B” post right side were also rusted away, this was caused by a hole in the wheel well that I think had been there since new allowing water etc to enter the cavity. The shell has been stripped of everything, even to the point of breaking off bolts and screws to do the job. I would say the car had had a fairly hard time of it, no major prangs but a number of minor dings that were not repaired but just patched up and re-sprayed over, these will all have to be repaired properly. To be honest if I had known the whole extent of the damage I would have looked elsewhere to see if there was a better offer, as it is, it is here now and we must carry on regardless, it is still a better bet than repairing the original body. I suppose this is what you get dealing from 12000 miles.

After the accident 12 years ago we had Steven Carr fabricate for us, at a considerable cost, all that was needed to make an A spec. into a B spec., we were hoping to be able to offer these for sale but virtually all will be now used to replace the rusted parts. Steven says now, he would not want to repeat that job so we were lucky as even if they are available it would cost a small fortune to source it all today. The new “A” posts had no holes drilled and the fittings for the door hinges still have to be made and attached, this has almost been done, just a trial fit and then paint it all before permanently fitting in place. In the meantime still trying to get all the old paint off and down to a solid acceptable base.

One set of parts we are missing is the 8 pieces for the door locking mechanism, the ones off the original car are some odd ones and require the doors to be altered, plus the RH one was badly damaged in the accident. I managed to trace original ones in the USA some from Carl Christiansen and the rest from John Carey who it seems has a huge inventory of SP parts. Anyone interested his e-mail address is daimlerusa@yahoo.com or phone 978 356-4745, I think there would be 001 in front of that. John is a bit lax in the e-mail side of thing but he does answer in time.

One little task we have done for the Club is go to AC Fibreglass where the moulds are stored to locate them all, and take an inventory, we found them all except one, number 19 on the list. It still could be there, but just in case has any member out there and has it please let the committee know.

It is now Saturday 1st March, a red letter day as we have now removed all the paint off the body, doors boot and bonnet, right down to the gellcoat. I have certainly lost track of the hours my wife and I have spent on this job, all done by hand with a tungsten carbide scraper and sandpaper, we tried several power tools but in the just honest toil did the job better and faster. Some might say we have gone to too much trouble but this is the only way to find all the areas that need attention. As well when we come to prepare for painting the whole surface should be of the same density, no hard or soft spots.