THE RESTORATION OF 1EMO 954 (ex HTR 333)
At first appearance the car seemed to be in a little “above” average condition for its age. The steering was found to be “suicidal” on the trip from Chequered Flag Stables to Springvale South!!
The restoration commenced early October 2009. The first lot of parts were ordered on 14 th October, which was followed by a steady stream of deliveries or local purchases almost until the end of the restoration.
By 20 th October the body was totally off the chassis, and by the beginning of November the chassis was totally stripped awaiting straightening, repairing and painting.
What can be found in a 50 year old chassis!!! This car had obviously been involved in motorkhanas given the amount of grass stalks and the 3kgs of dirt that emptied out of it.
By mid-November all chassis repairs had been completed, the chassis braced front and rear and straightened. Supports for the rack and pinion steering had been welded in at this time. The chassis had been sandblasted and painted in POR, leaving an excellent base to begin again from.
By the end of November, the modified Ford Escort rack and pinion steering was in place.
Inner and outer sills – replaced
Right hand door pillar – replaced
Bottom of both guards – replaced
Nose of the left hand guard – repaired … all of this due to either rust and/or bodgy repairs in the past.
AT the same time, the body was strengthened with bracings on both sides and other modifications to the master cylinder area of the engine bay were done, with the elimination of the separate reservoir.
Brackets were made for the steering column supports and supports for the brake power booster.
It was found that virtually every spot weld in the engine bay and scuttle area were broken (or never welded from manufacture!) causing massive scuttle shake. HTR 333 would now have to be one of the tightest TR3s in Australia.
By the end of January the motor had been bored/balanced/rebuilt/lined bored with modifications to the head. The flywheel had been lightened, clutch strengthened, a narrow belt fan belt conversion fitted. WE struck problems with the conversion because of Moss Europe changing their product line. The 3 pulleys didn't line up … oh the headaches of a full restoration!!!!!
The fitting of an alternator, high velocity water pump, high torque starter motor was next.
Silver CERAMIC coated extractors
extractors with a full s/steel exhaust … what a great sounding car!!
The gearbox and overdrive were sent up to Geoff Kelly for his TLC. The overdrive was found to be Vanguard instead of TR. - a costly exercise to rectify!!
The tailshaft completely overhauled and balanced. The differential was found to be in very good condition so only the seals had to be replaced. There was a complete overhaul of the hydraulic brake system.
There was a complete front suspension rebuild. Spax adjustable shockers were fitted. An extra leaf was fitted to the rear springs and the springs re-tensioned. Shockers were uprated.
26 th February – the paint was ordered.
March. What a difference a coat of paint makes! By the end of March, the brand new wiring loom was in place, the clutch and brake master cylinders and power brake booster were fitted and the dash was covered.
The starter motor had an upgrade. Dayton 72 spoke wire wheels were ordered, a new thermal fan and switch kit fitted, and the tailshaft was overhauled.
April saw work continuing in progress. New push rods, slave cylinder, Petronix ignition and coil, cam bearing, conrod bolts, new radiator and alternator, spark plug leads, battery cable – you name it, it's been replaced!
Mid-April the engine/gearbox/overdrive were being put in place.
The reconditioned carburettors looked stunning. The polished inlet manifold looked great. All the rechroming was collected and fitting to the car commenced along with all new handles, bonnet/boot hinges, badges and letters.
Yokohama tyres were fitted on the Dayton wheels in early May, with brand new spinners.
In May, HTR333 was trailered up to Robert Watson at CentreLine Motor Trimming in Bayswater for a new soft top, tonneau, tonneau cover , complete interior fit out with contrasting carpet and mats. What a beautiful, meticulous job and what a stunning looking car.
Then HTR333 came back to Brendan for the all the finishing touches. The RWC was obtained and HTR333 driven (on the foulest day you could imagine, with every truck on the road throwing up unimaginable dirt onto this beautiful car and its new soft top!) to VicRoads for registration on the 25 th June 2010. Two trips in this dirty weather for this little baby as the compliance no. wasn't stamped into the chassis (just because it wasn't from new made absolutely no difference to them). An engraver was purchased, the no. engraved on the chassis and the registration was finally completed, much to Roger's great relief.
HTR333 then returned to Brendan for a good cleanup and more finishing touches.
Roger finally took delivery of his baby in early July 2010.
By Brendan and Pat Kelly