|1955 Triumph TR3 Australia-assembled. Standard Motors (Melbourne)
build number 043
Commission Number DTR 9380
Engine Number TS 7391E
Black with red carpets and red leather trim originally red with
Previous known owners are Bruce Mackay of Avalon in Sydney who bought it for between $5,500 and $6,600 in the late eighties from the owner of a Triumph (or other British car) dealership in St Ives in NSW. He sold it to Kevin Jones of Bungendore in NSW for $27,000 who on sold it to the present owner in August 2001 for $20,000. It has since undergone a comprehensive ground up, body-off and mechanical rebuild to original specs 2002 2003. Its original colour scheme of red with black trim has been reversed and it is now splendid in gleaming black with red leather trim. Only the TR4 head, intake manifold and gearbox, Vanguard steering wheel control head, high torque starter motor and VH 44 brake booster have been retained or added as non-original equipment. In all respects it is otherwise as it was built.
Body work, chassis and trim
An early rebuild in 1978 meant that all panels were sound and without rust. Body was removed from chassis, dismantled and taken back to primer. Panel gaps trued. Repainted in two pack black. Chassis stripped of all suspension components and running gear, sandblasted, checked for dimensional specs and painted. All brake and fuel lines replaced with copper coated steel bundy pipe.
Windscreen surround rechromed and rebuilt with new glass, pegs and rubber. Other body chrome and brightwork redone and all seals and rubbers replaced. Most instruments rebuilt. Retrimmed per original specs with red Connolly leather facings (two seats and seat backs, occasional seat and seat back and cockpit surrounds) and off-white piping. Recarpeted in red wool. Other trim parts in red vinyl. New hood and sidescreens.
Suspension, steering and brakes
Suspension components (vertical links, ball joints, steering idler, trunnion bushes, shock absorbers) replaced where necessary. Upper and lower wishbones polyurethane rebushed. Steering box dismantled and checked, bearings replaced endplate adjustment reshimmed and steering peg rotated. Rear spring bushes replaced in polyurethane. Lever shock absorbers and links checked and replaced. Lockheed brake system dismantled. Lockheed master cylinder already re bored with chrome inserts but rekitted. Ditto for clutch slave and wheel cylinders. Brake lines replaced. Brake shoes checked and brakes adjusted. Rebuilt VH 44 vacuum brake booster added.
Engine, drive train, and electricals
Engine dismantled, dipped and painted. Original pistons, rings and liners retained as tolerances still close to standard. Crankshaft ground and reverse scroll machined off to accommodate Chevrolet oil seal (no more leaks and marking of territory). Big end and main bearings replaced. Rotating parts fan to clutch balanced. Cam shaft rebuilt and reground to standard. Head dipped, crack tested and reassembled with new valves, seats and valve guides. Stellite valve seats for unleaded petrol. Gearbox rebuilt and a rebuilt overdrive unit added. Recently recored radiator was flushed, pressure tested and replaced and the original fan replaced with a more efficient one of six blades. Pressurised radiator overflow recovery system added. New generator and high torque starter motor ex The Register. Carburettor spindles and butterflies checked and carburetors rebuilt with new kits. Fuel pump rekitted. Fuel tap cork replaced with brass piston and polyurethane rings (ending the stink of petrol in the garage). Oil pressure now 80 PSI at speed and 30 PSI at hot idle. Compression 160 PSI on all four. Engine stays cool at 170 degrees. The differential was not dismantled but the axle seals were renewed.
Rewired with a braided harness. All bulbs replaced. High torque starter motor necessitated reversing of battery polarity. Regulator rebuilt. New generator. Davies Craig manually-operated thermo fan installed upstream of radiator.