All was looking good. Jerry Peston-Ladd was happy everything was as it should be and a brief road test indicated all was well.
So, the moment of truth. The greatest automotive story ever told (possibly) was coming to an end. Only one thing to do, load up and head south…
Armed with the trusty, and very heavy, transporter I headed sarf of the river, Indian country I’m told…
The sight that greeted me brought a tear to my eye. Lady Marilyn, and one of her sisters, were waiting for me to arrive.
No sooner had I extracted myself from the van after a 270 mile non-stop run than my lady came out of her resting place…
People who’ve built, or restored, a car will appreciate how much of a genuinely special moment this is. She’s far from finished, but she’s mechanically done.
Jerry explained the details of his work and some of the special features installed along the way.
Next we paid a visit to Jerry’s other project, the restoration of a 1917 steam locomotive no. 4253. This is another nut and bolt rebuild, but on a huge scale. Its all done by volunteers and, end-to-end, its likely to be a 10 year project.
The website is here 4253 and if its your thing, or even if it isn’t, why now drop them a few quid? There are a number of goodies in the sales and promotions section.
Back to base and time to load Lady Marilyn…
To be fair, this isn’t the perfect trailer for the job, so we had to adapt. The triple carb configuration requires the engine to sit a little lower and this means the sump would catch first followed by the exhaust and chassis. We unhitched the trailer used the rear stabilising legs and jacked it up with the nose wheel to get a good angle. Even then a couple of blocks of wood were required to get an extra couple of inches…
With patience and care we got there…
Nearly time to say good bye, for now, to Jerry Preston-Ladd, without who’s help I’d still be months and months away from finishing. Jerry’s technical ability is astonishing and he knowledge of Challenger E Types unparalleled. He’s become a good friend over the past 5 months too.
Here’s the old boy with his trademark grin 🙂
I managed to dodge the monsoons that typified this years Easter break and later that very evening she was back home tucked away in the snug (as in 2 inches clearance) garage in Yorkshire.
We had noticed one of the headlights had rotated in its pod. Not something we’d had off as the wiring terminated outside the pod. As the next job was an MOT it needed fettling so off came the headlight cover for a look-see.
Here’s the final legacy of the previous owners work. The only bit of original wiring left and the final bodge. Easy enough to replace and that was done. the headlamp was secured and everything bolted back up again.
The next day was MOT day, I set off in between showers for my local testing station where she was driven onto the ramp in nervous anticipation.
Whilst on the ramp it was a good change to take some underside pictures.
and the front suspension
Some time later the good news came along with a pass certificate.
So she’s on the road!
I still have the roof to sort out and the internal trim to improve, but she’s now a rolling restoration.
Next bits on the list
Make the door card fit properly – currently catching on the cill
Repair the roof – its about an inch short at the rear
Interior trim panels – tidy up for now – replace at a later date
new wheels – the 185’s are period, but I prefer the 205 option tyre
Bonnet pushers – make a pair of new ones.
Drive the bloody backside off the car and smile like the village idiot.