Robin Allum - LPM 949

This photo was taken at the Thames Valley Sports Car Day May 2007 at Hambledon near Henley. This was last time I drove the car with its original engine and I only just managed to get home.

I bought the car in June 2006 but after a couple of months I began to get engine trouble, after four breakdowns I decided the engine needed some serious investigation. Repairs would be very expensive and, wanting to keep the car on the road, I have fitted a Ford Essex 3 litre V6 engine and a 5-speed gearbox. The original engine is in a garage waiting for repairs.

I will continue with the non-original engine; some purists may frown at what I have done but I am on a very tight budget and the car is still on the road.

The Ford Essex 3 Litre V6 engine mounts fit onto the original mounting points. The Ford type 9 5-speed gearbox makes driving better as top gear reduces the engine revs while on the motorway, the gear lever ended up in the original position but central, the DB gearbox lever being just off centre. The mount for the gearbox was more or less in the same position but the chassis needed drilling to allow the gearbox to fit. The only problem was the prop shaft as the Ford box had a spline output but a narrow universal joint was available that enabled the prop to slide through the chassis.

This photo shows the new pedal rubbers I made as I was unable to find anything to replace the original ones that were in a dangerous state. I could not find any replacements, so I made up a mould and cast them with Devcon Flexane rubber.

When I was getting the car ready for a show at Easter 2009 I found the anti-roll bar bushes were in urgent need of replacement. This was mentioned at the last MOT.

When I bought the car in 2006 I did feel that the bushes needed replacing and on contacting various specialists I was told that if they were not the same as those for an Aston Martin, then they would not be available and would have to be made. A quote I had was very expensive so I forgot about them until it became obvious that they needed replacement. I decided to remove the anti-roll bar and take measurements and then contact some manufacturers. The bushes were indeed in a poor way and with approximate dimensions I went on the internet for information. I discovered that they are a very common type of bush as fitted to a lot of British cars from the 1950s to 1980s. Unfortunately, when it came to removing the connecting pins they were beyond use due to severe corrosion and one broke. I made up new pins and had the car back on the road in a couple of days.

This photo shows completed repairs.

Robin Allum