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Standard Teignmouth Restoration Feature

1930 Teignmouth Restoration, Part 1

Hi, my name is Steve Birt and I have been a member of the Club for about 2-3 years.

I am a pattern maker/modelmaker and have always had an interest in cars. I built a kit car a few years ago which was great fun to do, but then sold the kit car in order to fund this, my new project.

On 16th July, my 1930 vintage Standard Teignmouth was taken to the Uxbridge Auto Show and displayed as restoration in progress, and it seemed to generate a large amount of interest.

I had spotted an advert in Classic Car Weekly for the car, which was offered for sale and in need of complete restoration. He wasn’t kidding, can you imagine a complete car dismantled in a small lockup garage?

In a complete moment of madness and after some bartering we came to an agreement on the price and it was mine. Two trailers and two car loads later, the parts were put in three garages due to lack of space at home.

At the same time, I was also about to start an extension to my house and garage and once the garage was extended; the car was once again all in one place.

I decided to start on the chassis, axle and brakes, in order to get to a rolling chassis stage. The front axle needed new king pins and the bearings, hubs and brake shoes all needed to be renewed and overhauled. All ball joints were ok, but just needed to be stripped down, cleaned and greased.

However, the back axle was a different story, this was damaged and I believe this is what took the car off the road back in 1976. It was dismantled right down to the last nut and bolt, but revealed the casting was broken on the brake pivot. After some consideration, Ken House; club member, said he could weld it back together.

Once this was completed the axle was reassembled thanks to the help of the parts book which showed the axle dismantled. It all went back together successfully, but the back plates did not fit, so new ones were made. After this new U bolts were made, one spring was broken, so a new one was also made. The previous owner had purchased new shackles and pins, so it wasn’t long before we had a rolling chassis.

Once this was complete, we started on the engine and gearbox. There were two engines, one was worn and had no flywheel, and the other was in fairly good condition, had a flywheel, but no clutch. I think this engine had been in a boat, or used as a donkey engine for a generator or pump, so upon dismantling and inspection by Brian Parkes; club member, it was given a clean bill of health and put back together.

Meanwhile the starter dynamo and magneto were restored and a clutch was found in Coventry. The gearbox appeared to be in good condition, only a clean and inspection was needed, and together with new oil, this was mated with the engine and installed in the chassis. All we needed now was the link between the gearbox and back axle, but yet another setback, yes you guessed it, no propshaft.

After some phone calls, one was found, but unfortunately it was too short, as the donor vehicle was a Standard Selby, which has a shorter chassis. However, the flanges were ok, so after some thought it was decided to have a new propshaft made by a company in Birmingham. The flanges from the short propshaft were used as a pattern so when it was returned, it fitted perfectly.

All five wheels needed attention, they had all rusted inside so all were shot blasted and Ken House brazed up the rims to replace lost material, five new tyres were found at Beaulieu Auto Jumble, plus two head lights and two shock absorbers.

I was now at the point of connecting the brake linkage together.

All new pivot pins were made and the cross tube was cut, and new tube was welded in place to bring back to original diameter. Once this was assembled we had very little play in the brakes. Two new cables were purchased from Speedy Cables; this car has cables at the front and rods at the back.

I only had a silencer for the car exhaust so I managed to find a stainless exhaust from a Morris Minor. After some cutting and bending I managed to create an exhaust system. It was now time to start the engine; after connecting up a petrol supply the battery was connected, and it burst into life. The engine ticked over with no trouble but when the throttle was opened flames shot out of the carburettor.

After about two weeks of trying different valve settings and altering the timing, I was at my wits end, and asked Brian Parks if he could shed any light on the problem. When he came round, I started the engine and he said straight away that the engine was misfiring and suggested I checked the compression. I checked this and all cylinders were between 80-90 psi, so this was ok. After some more detective work, it was found that two of the ignition leads were crossed over. What had happened was that the engine fires 1342. No. 1 is nearest the bulkhead, what I did not realize was that the magneto distributor cap was from an early Ford which fires 1432. So once 4 and 3 were swapped over, the engine ran as sweet as a nut.

Everything is now painted in black, ready to have the body put back on the chassis.

I am aware that there are other cars and information that could be added to this site to make it more comprehensive, so if you have material and photographs, please let me know.  Please send me, Phil Homer, a message at: Phil Homer