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Hillman Aero Minx restoration
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bob2



Joined: 06 Dec 2007
Posts: 1722
Location: Malta

PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2012 11:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Try speedy spares, they cater for rootes cars the most
http://www.speedyspares.co.uk/n1stpage.htm
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1935Hillman



Joined: 06 Apr 2010
Posts: 257
Location: Hampshire

PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2012 7:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I will give Speedy Spares a call in the morning, they are closed on Wednesdays. Usually they are great for stuff from about 1936 but often don't have the earlier stuff. The sump plugs are probably the same for all Hillmans up to the 60's!
Kels, I had a very interesting conversation with Austin 7 man David Cochrane who supplied me with my big end bolts. He told me that despite what the dial says, a large (long) torque wrench will exert far too much leverage when torquing smaller i.e. big end bolts. This all made sense to me. The big wrench which does indeed click had tightened the crankshaft bolts well at 50lbs but was far too heavy for the big end bolts which required far less at about 20lbs. This is well borne out by the fact that torque wrenches are made in different sizes and hence ratings.
Thanks for comments
Tim
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Churchill Johnson



Joined: 11 Jan 2011
Posts: 325
Location: Rayleigh Essex

PostPosted: Wed Jan 25, 2012 11:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

With ref to torque wrenches you get what you pay for i have used click type ones for most of my mechanical working life and have a 3/8",1/2"and a 3/4" the two smallest are snap on and cover a range from 1/2lb ft to 350lbft, would they be accurate from low to high no but should still be within the manufactures limits,that's why more modern engines are better by having elastic type bolts for most critical situations for apart from initial torque an angle gauge is used which should stop over or under tightening of a bolt or nut.
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speedster1



Joined: 26 Jan 2012
Posts: 1

PostPosted: Fri Jan 27, 2012 6:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi - Great reading about your Aero Minx adventures - especially interested to read that you have also bought 2 "life-ex" cars. I am currently looking for 2 rolling chassis, 1 for my brother and 1 for myself to build aluminium specials in the 1930's style, so I wondered if you would like to sell yours, or perhaps know of somebody that could help. The chassis would not be "wasted" but properly and sympathetically rebodied - once I can work out how to attach pictures I will post some of the special that I have just finished using a 1960's Spitfire donor. - If anybody can help that would be great. I can be contacted on 01963 440954. regards Martin.
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1935Hillman



Joined: 06 Apr 2010
Posts: 257
Location: Hampshire

PostPosted: Tue May 01, 2012 9:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bit of an update.
Backing up a bit here to go back and look at something I forgot to feature before.
Front engine mounts had completely perished and proved to be slightly tricky to locate so I approached a company called RH Nuttall in Birmingham who are mentioned in the excellent Wheatley and Morgan book 'Vintage and Thoroughbred Cars' Nuttalls seem to have been there for ever and provide excellent old fashioned service. I cannot praise them highly enough. They made my bushes exactly to my dimensions and while not cheap the finished article says it all I think.




Sump and gearbox filler / drain caps have now been fabricated in brass by my local (and brilliant) engineer. I had several made at the same time so that I can also replace the old ones on my road car some time.
Gearbox fun and games next. I spent weeks thoroughly cleaning, freeing up and painting the gearbox only to find that the bell housing that I had also spent many hours preparing didn't fit it! It turned out that the bell housing is the right one and the gearbox the wrong one. Luckily I have accumulated three other 'boxes and quickly ascertained which was the best one and began again. Having got back to square one I then discovered the next problem. The gearbox is mounted on the chassis by means of a couple of rubber blocks anchored down by a bracket and strap (photo to follow) I got everything prepared and went for a fit. It was then and only then that I realised that the bottom bracket that bolts to the chassis is completely wrong. After a great deal of rummaging in boxes I found another slightly different bracket - which also turned out to be wrong. I contacted my prewar Hillman guru who said he might have one and popped up to see him. After only a few minutes of searching we found one which looked right. On returning home I discovered sadly that it also was wrong. I now had three very similar brackets, all clearly very close to being right AND all apparently Hillman but none of them correct. I had to do something and so got to work fabricating a bracket. An afternoon with some angle iron, an angle grinder and a welder and hey presto, a bracket.
After painting and fitting the gearbox is now successfully mounted and we can move on.
Alloy cased remote gear change has been cleaned and polished and fits nicely. The original gear lever was entirely usable but quite pitted and a bit worn at the UJ so back to my engineer who made me two beautiful copies one of which is now fitted. I made a small error when attaching the gear remote the first time which was to fit overlong bolts. One of them actually rubbed on the gearing very slightly and if I had not been vigilant could have been left like it. Check that you always use the exact length bolts for the job. No longer, no shorter.
.
Once fitted correctly the gearbox although still dry at the moment changes well through the gears in a definite and clear way with no sticky areas. I love the look of the remote now it is fitted as it instantly conveys that prewar sporty look.

Yes I have been engine turning again and yes I know it is not as original but I like it doing it and it looks great in my opinion. Purists look away!
I also realise that the aperture for the starter is unpainted. For some daft reason I thought it wouldn't be seen, Doh! I will go back and attend to it.
Just finish with a totally gratuitous picture of my road car (as I laughingly car her) in the garage.
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1935Hillman



Joined: 06 Apr 2010
Posts: 257
Location: Hampshire

PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2012 10:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The last picture shows my road car with the Blockley tyres on. I am near to getting the wheels on the red car and let her down off the axle stands so began looking around for tyres again. I saw that Longstone have begun producing their own block pattern period looking tyre and that they are significantly cheaper than the blockleys. I ordered a set of the Longstones which were delivered very promptly. It was not until I had them fitted that I realised how much smaller than the Blockleys they are. They are skinnier and lower in profile.However, on discussing this with other vintage car bods came to the conclusion that the Blockleys are possibly a bit big and chunky, especially for the lighter car. This was borne out as soon as I drove the car on the Longstones which seemed lighter and nippier on the road. In conclusion I see the benefits of both I am perfectly happy with both and there is room for both. The image shows my car with the Longstones on my other refurbished set of wheels.
[img][/img]
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1935Hillman



Joined: 06 Apr 2010
Posts: 257
Location: Hampshire

PostPosted: Sun May 27, 2012 11:44 am    Post subject: throttle linkages Reply with quote

Hi all,
Can anyone advise me about throttle linkages rods and ends. I have found lots of different types on the web but a recommendation is always helpful. I like the idea of making up my own so individual components would be my preference.
Thank you
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Kelsham



Joined: 18 Jan 2009
Posts: 349
Location: Llandrindod Wells Powys

PostPosted: Mon May 28, 2012 7:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I always enjoy reading about your progress of your Aero Minx. I would have thought you would want to use ends that look as similiar to the original equipment as possible ?.

I have just been remaking the ignition, slow runing control rods for my BSA fourwheeler. I used stainless rod available off Ebay to make them and polished it to match the chrome ends.

Kels.
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1935Hillman



Joined: 06 Apr 2010
Posts: 257
Location: Hampshire

PostPosted: Sun Jun 17, 2012 9:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Kels and others for your messages. I will probably go the ebay route for the linkage rods as suggested.
Well the time for this chassis to be rolling is overdue so a push needs to be made. I therefore decided to get all of the engine side and end plates polished and fitted and leave the engine for a bit now that it is largely complete.
I began with the front axle. I had previously prepared the axle, tapered hubs and king pins and put them away so it did not take long to get everything ready for action. the great thing about having done so much of the work was that significant progress can be made quite quickly. This was to be the case and in an afternoon I had axle fitted, king pins fitted and splined hubs on. It was then seconds to stick the wheels on.

It became clear that the inner and outer bearings in the hubs were almost new and leads me to think that this car had been restored quite recently but for some reason had been dismantled and left to decay. I did replace them anyway as I had already bought new bearings and it seemed silly not to. I was to be reminded of why it is always a good idea to be thorough when I got to the rear axle.

I began by dismantling the rear axle and depositing the proceeds into a couple of plastic buckets, one for each end and marked near and offside. The parts would be cleaned and repainted and reassembled as required.

The half shafts came out fairly easily complete with the splined hubs attached. I then took them over to the workbench to remove the hubs in order to inspect the keyways and tapers on the shafts. The first one popped off quite easily with a few turns of the hub puller and again the condition was perfect, even the black nylon seals looked brand new. With a quick wipe over and re-grease I put it back together for refitting later. Now for the second one. Grease cap retaining grub screw out, grease cap out, and surprise, surprise, NO HUB NUT! Well, well, good job I looked. I had just read an article in a magazine about a chap had decided during a rebuild that a certain part could not possibly be worn/ damaged and would not require restoration. It was this part that failed on the car's inaugural run requiring a significant strip down to find it.


I had therefore to get the hub off to examine the shaft etc. Easier said than done. Will it shift? will it hell! I cannot get the hub off and I wonder if the previous owner had the same problem and decided to leave it alone, then forgetting to put the hub nut back on! I tried a new hub nut but cannot get it started in the thread which I suspect is damaged through taking a beating while trying to get the hub off. I have bought a bigger hub puller on ebay to see if is will do the trick. Should come this week so i will get right on it when it arrives. In the meantime i whipped the diff cover off to find a near perfect set of teeth so quickly re-sealed and refitted the cover. I also bought a couple of rubber keel blocks to fit to the underslung chassis. They act as buffers for the axle for when it settles onto the chassis. They are modern boat jobs as the name suggests but fitted perfectly into the holes on the frame!
The axle can now be fitted to the springs and await the half shafts (if I ever get that blasted hub off.
Something that you may also find interesting and I can show you now, the Aero Minx was fitted with spinners with removable plugs in their centres, This enabled the hubs to be greased without taking the spinners off. An interesting and confusing fact is that each hub is marked with its position on the car, for example RIGHT SIDE OFF SIDE and LEFT SIDE NEAR SIDE respectively. However, the one marked RIGHT SIDE OFF SIDE also carries the mark LH (Left Hand?) and the one marked LEFT SIDE NEAR SIDE is marked RH. Very odd. Any thoughts anyone?

I have also been told that some of these plugs had an enamel Hillman badge on them which could be turned out with ones thumb but I haven't seen photographic proof of this as yet.
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47Jag



Joined: 26 Jun 2008
Posts: 1458
Location: Bothwell, Scotland

PostPosted: Sun Jun 17, 2012 11:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A word of advice. When you get your bigger puller on, tighten it as hard as you can, STAND BESIDE NOT IN FRONT OF THE HUB, then give it a whack on the end of the puller. If it's anything like my Jag. was the hub will fly across the room.

Art
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Kelsham



Joined: 18 Jan 2009
Posts: 349
Location: Llandrindod Wells Powys

PostPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2012 7:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would also apply some heat with a blowlamp. Lucky you checked.

Regards Kels.
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1935Hillman



Joined: 06 Apr 2010
Posts: 257
Location: Hampshire

PostPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2012 11:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks chaps I will report back when the beast arrives. It will not beat me thats for sure!
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JC T ONE



Joined: 30 Oct 2008
Posts: 1109
Location: Denmark

PostPosted: Mon Jun 18, 2012 2:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello Smile

thats some really nice work, you are doing.

nice to see some proper hand made items Cool

Jens Christian
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1935Hillman



Joined: 06 Apr 2010
Posts: 257
Location: Hampshire

PostPosted: Tue Jun 19, 2012 10:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Jens, much appreciated
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1935Hillman



Joined: 06 Apr 2010
Posts: 257
Location: Hampshire

PostPosted: Wed Jul 04, 2012 8:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Big puller was completely ineffective despite all efforts. I asked a local garage owner who suggested going to see a nearby heavy engineering company specialising in heavy hydraulics. A very nice man took the shaft from me and disappeared into the workshop. After about ten minutes he reappeared with hub and shaft seperated, the threaded end of the shaft somewhat distorted! 'Took over ten tons pressure on that small end, thought I was going to have to give up' he said. It was nice to see it apart though as I hate to be beaten by anything.

I don't know that the engineer's press was entirely responsible for the distortion as the castle nut was missing which might indicate that the thread was already damaged and the nut couldn't be refitted by the previous owner who felt that if he couldn't get the hub off by any means, there was no way it was going to just fall off!
It forced me to make my mind up about something that I had been procrastinating over for some time, whether or not to use the brand new shiny half shafts that I had made a couple of years ago. With one old one now damaged the choice was quite easy. Put them in. I don't know why I was holding on to them but I tend to fluctuate between re-using original parts and replacing anything I can replace depending upon the mood I'm in! Someone once told me that if you are replacing one of a pair of any component it is better to replace both so that is what I am doing. I'm not sure if the thread on the half shaft can be repaired but will take it along to my guru and ask the question.
So, The shafts and hubs are in and this is how they look. Not too bad but the camera seems to pick up the faintest of surface rust and magnify it enormously. They look almost completely clean to the naked eye!


Last edited by 1935Hillman on Wed Aug 01, 2012 3:30 pm; edited 1 time in total
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