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Homepage. This page: A 'new' Standard 8 arrives
Standard 8 with my 10 in the background
I'd not set out to buy another cheapo classic car, this Standard 8 kind of found me, honest.

The day began all innocently, when I decided to pop out to a friend's place for a cup of tea and a chat. Pulling up outside their place my eye was instantly drawn to the shapely lump sat outside. The tantalising lines of a baby Standard were right before me, the colour even matched my own '57 Standard Ten.

Negotiations and swift bargaining resulted in a modest sum being paid for the car, and it appeared at our house soon afterwards, in June '05.

Someone had begun to do some work on it, and had partially stripped it down. The structure is actually quite good, the sills and floors being more solid than many 8s and 10s that turn up unrestored. Handily included in the deal were spare front wings, front and rear panels, and a couple of good front seats. The rear seat however is not very good, so a replacement would be nice (ideally in red). The engine hadn't run for many years though, so the mechanical state of the car was unknown.

A week or so passed and the Standard was delivered. Fortunately it rolled ok, so it wasn't a problem to roll it down and park it up in the shelter attached to the side of my garage. My original idea was that it would be a good donor car for my own Ten, not that it needs much but I like to have a spares car around as it makes maintaining the running car that bit easier. A close look at this car though suggests that it should really be restored, it even came with a new-style V5C and retains its original registration number. The floors look solid and just need rubbing down and painting, the sills and A/B posts look to be in decent fettle also. So I'm in a bit of a quandry. Do I hang on to it, with a view to restoring it later down the line? or do I pull it apart for bits? Chances are I'll leave it as it is, and either rebuild it or sell it on at a later date.

One fine Saturday I thought I'd have a go at starting her up. Needless to say the original ignition key had long since disappeared, so a flick switch was substituted. A fully charged battery was fitted and amazingly a healthy spark was visible across the points, and at the plugs. More of a problem was old stale fuel in the tank. So that was drained away and fresh unleaded poured down. I cleared out the gauze filter on the fuel pump, and hand primed fuel up to the carb. Spinning it over on the starter the 803cc engine would cough but not catch. Further investigations highlighted that plug leads No 1 & 2 were in the wrong order. Once rectified, and after a quick re-charge of the battery, the engine was tried again. Some more churning, and finally she kicked into life, much to the amazement of er indoors who was doing some gardening.

Read about a Standard 8 that featured on the cover of a 1955 issue of Hotspur comic, one of Britain's Modern Marvels no less! (Hotspur comic cover).
Link to Hotspur feature
Not sure whether it'd carry on running for long, I hopped inside and promptly fell backwards into the rear compartment, an acute reminder that neither front seat was actually bolted down. Once I'd restored my decorum, a tentative test of the clutch and gearbox suggested that things were well in these departments. So well in fact that I was able to conduct some exploratory test drives up and down the lawn, under the wizened gaze of er indoors, studying the grooves I was leaving in the lawn as I sped up and down in the little car.

Feeling quite chuffed that the old girl actually ran, and didn't make any untoward noises or rattles, I parked her back under the shelter and retired to make a cup of tea, partly to moisten my throat that was now quite dry thanks to the fumey cab of the Standard (side exiting exhaust you see), and partly to butter-up 'er indoors who was still lamenting the grooves I'd left in the freshly mown lawn.

Late in 2005 I heard a rumour that my old Volvo 122S was back on the market, but now fully restored, so reluctantly I sold the Standard 8 (plus the 10) on to new homes, to make room for the return of the old Swede. The 8 was bought by a guy who lives not far from me, perhaps as a donor for his own restoration project, although if it turns out to be in better nick than his current car, my old 8 will get the green light. As of 2006 it was last spotted sat in a farmyard looking a little forlorn :-(

(PS This page is just one of hundreds of pages on www.oldclassicccar.co.uk, stuffed full with articles, photographs (including a free image archive!), visitors stories, memorabilia, postcards, advice and more, all dedicated to classic cars and their enthusiastic owners everywhere!!)
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