My Damascene Conversion

Discuss anything Morris Minor related.

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Myrtles Man
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My Damascene Conversion

Postby Myrtles Man » Thu May 17, 2018 4:08 pm

A big hello to everyone - I'm a new member with a newly-acquired car. A bit of background; although I used to travel as a passenger in them fairly frequently (two of my pals owned them) I never really 'got' the Morris Minor thing and, to be fair, they were then at the stage where they were regarded as old-fashioned, middle-of-the-road (often literally) cars, with far more exciting and appealing stuff about (minis, Mk1 GTI etc). Thus my own mechanically-propelled career took a different tack - motor bikes then, when finances would permit, Fiat 500 (couldn't afford a mini but how I wish I'd kept the Fiat; I sold it for 250 quid in 1969 and it would be worth maybe thirty times that now) Ford Corsair (stylish but rubbish), Austin Maxi (greatly underrated car in my view), Rover 3500S etc, etc.

Latterly, in my dotage, I've had a modest collection of old oil-leaking motorbikes and a Lotus Elan, which I sold when I realised that I wasn't using it much but still needed to use the spanners fairly frequently to keep it in order. Occasionally, Mrs MM who's not into motorbikes, would ask if I might be inclined to get another old clunker (oops! sorry! I meant classic car of course) and, at various car shows would show an interest in Mk2 Jags, Triumph Stags and Morris Minors, which would cause her to coo with delight but tended to leave my enthusiasm lukewarm only. However, being a considerate and caring spouse (and knowing which side my bread is buttered) I decided recently to look into Morris Minory, what it costs and what it's likely to entail. Upshot was that, a couple of weeks ago, I decided to buy the car, photos from the advert for which appear below and, which I feel sure you will agree, do a pretty persuasive job of convincing the doubters. After a thousand mile round trip to complete the purchase I'm now at the stage of familiarising myself with this (to me) alien machine, although the 500 plus mile motorway drive back certainly removed some of the rough edges of my ignorance. Please prepare yourselves for an ongoing catalogue of questions, queries and general observations on Morris Minors in general and Myrtle (for such is now her name) in particular.



https://ibb.co/fYMOad
https://ibb.co/bYOEgJ
https://ibb.co/m24bvd
https://ibb.co/e4mOad

BaldyTone
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Re: My Damascene Conversion

Postby BaldyTone » Thu May 17, 2018 7:34 pm

Welcome MM, you seem to have yourself a beauty there, no worries about getting help, the guys here are brill!
Good luck and enjoy. Cheers :D

MikeNash
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Re: My Damascene Conversion

Postby MikeNash » Thu May 17, 2018 7:46 pm

Hmmm,
Lovely car but Myrtle is missing some regular bits. Where's the oil drips from the clutch housing and the diff? And where's the knobs of grease that should hang from the front suspension and the hand brake cables? (But don't worry; I can sell you some if you want true authenticity!)
Welcome aboard - and remember there's no mistake you can make that we've not already done ourselves! Ask anything you like.
Regards, MikeN.
Morris Minor, the car of the future. One day they will all look like this!

shoebone
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Re: My Damascene Conversion

Postby shoebone » Thu May 17, 2018 7:48 pm

What a great looking car .... it just looks so .... cared for. Well done to you.

Mark Wilson
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Re: My Damascene Conversion

Postby Mark Wilson » Thu May 17, 2018 10:13 pm

Never mind the car (which is indeed a beauty), we always need people on here who can use words like "Damascene". (We've probably got some members who think it's the shade of green the previous owner clearly had a big tin of....) 8)

Mark

Myrtles Man
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Re: My Damascene Conversion

Postby Myrtles Man » Thu May 17, 2018 10:35 pm

Many thanks for all your kind words chaps. I have to say that, having taken the plunge and bought myself a moggie I'm an instant convert - I now 'get it'. Even the initial 500 mile drive down the motorway, noisy and relatively slow though it was (55 to 60mph, occasionally 65 to 70) did nothing to dampen my enthusiasm and Mrs MM is delighted (brownie points there, I think). The one aspect that I need to address however is the braking, or rather lack of it! Had it not been for my sometime ownership of an Ariel Leader, the application of the front 'brake' of which seemed to actually make the bike go faster, I'd have been appalled and terrified in equal measure whereas, with the bike experience to forewarn me, I was merely slightly nervous and very careful. Still, I would like to improve matters as much as possible (short of converting to front discs, as I prefer to retain as much originality as I can) and, to that end, I'm about to pull the drums off to do a detailed check on the condition of everything in there. I initially thought of adding a servo but, on finding that the Moggie, weirdly, has no brake reservoir and a master cylinder hidden inside the chassis rail, I've since realised that it's maybe not such a straightforward 'add on' as I had assumed. Any thoughts, experiences or recommendations on this aspect would be very welcome.

PS - Mark, I don't see how anyone could possibly be so confused as to think that Damascene might be a shade of green; it's obviously a type of grey as demonstrated in the further picture below:-

https://ibb.co/ns8EgJ

Monty-4
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Re: My Damascene Conversion

Postby Monty-4 » Fri May 18, 2018 8:31 am

I found the brakes to be "okay" in standard form but they must be well bled and adjusted (and readjusted) fairly frequently. I have recently fit larger drums from a Wolseley 1500 to mine and the enormous Riley 1.5 drums can also be fit - you've just got to be lucky enough to come across a pair.

Welcome and I must say your car looks fantastic - certainly the cleanest I've seen underneath!
68' 4-door Saloon, another 'Monty'.

Mark Wilson
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Re: My Damascene Conversion

Postby Mark Wilson » Fri May 18, 2018 9:22 am

Fitting a servo will reduce the effort at the pedal, but will not improve the "three days written notice" stopping performance. I've fitted Wolseley 9" drums and a servo, but can't report on their effectiveness as my project has yet to leave the garage.

My earlier aside on colour referred to the fetching green used to pick out the components under the bonnet - unusual, but rather like it! Looking at the newspaper in your photo collection I'm trying to resist calling it Outlanderish....... (Failed again)

Mark

Myrtles Man
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Re: My Damascene Conversion

Postby Myrtles Man » Fri May 18, 2018 9:33 am

Thanks for your advice about brakes Monty (and also your kind words about Myrtle). I've now read your thread about fitting Wolseley drums and if a) I could locate a set and b) were mechanically competent enough to fit them I'd be on it like a shot. As it is though, I'll pursue the correct any faults/carry out regular maintenance routine you advocate instead, at least for the time being. After all, a million plus moggies were fitted with brakes such as Myrtle's and, as far as I'm aware, they weren't all crashing headlong into stuff back in the day. I do recall seeing several that had collapsed to their knees by the roadside however as a result, presumably, of insufficient kingpin lubrication. But that's a different story.

Mark - as usual, the penny was slow to drop with me, but I did eventually suss out that you were referring to the colour of Myrtle's mechanical bits and, as far as your outlandish thoughts are concerned, you are in fact spot on - watch the return of the series in October to see Myrtle's flirtation with stardom (or so I'm told by the vendor).

myoldjalopy
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Re: My Damascene Conversion

Postby myoldjalopy » Fri May 18, 2018 10:30 am

If it were me, assuming the engine is standard, I'd certainly leave the brakes as they are for now (correctly adjusted etc. of course). As you long as you drive carefully and sensibly, the standard braking system does its job perfectly adequately. You soon get used to it. You might be surprised at the number of people on here who have optimistically fitted some sort of new-fangled gadget to their car, only to find it then causes problems of one kind or another. And yes, your new machine looks a beauty! :D

Myrtles Man
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Re: My Damascene Conversion

Postby Myrtles Man » Fri May 18, 2018 11:40 am

Thanks MOJ; that is very much my own inclination for the brakes, at least for the time being. One other aspect of moggiedom that I quickly became aware of on my long journey home is its apparently total inability to absorb road imperfections, crashing and banging over even the slightest broken road surface and, negotiating speed humps, even at about 5 miles an hour, creates the most horrendous crash from the rear (which may well have been the enormous, boxed Morris Minor toolkit in the boot - see picture below). I'm assuming that this behaviour is normal and inescapable for cars blessed/cursed (delete as appropriate) with cart-spring rear suspension.

https://ibb.co/bSatAd

BrianHawley
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Re: My Damascene Conversion

Postby BrianHawley » Fri May 18, 2018 12:03 pm

Lovely looking car.
Brian

Image "Jodie". '67 Traveller, 1275, discs, suspension mods etc.

Myrtles Man
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Re: My Damascene Conversion

Postby Myrtles Man » Fri May 18, 2018 12:22 pm

Thanks Brian; I'm delighted to have found it.

Mark Wilson
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Re: My Damascene Conversion

Postby Mark Wilson » Fri May 18, 2018 12:34 pm

Myrtles Man wrote:
Fri May 18, 2018 9:33 am
as far as I'm aware, they weren't all crashing headlong into stuff back in the day.

Ermm - I crashed (fairly gently) into the back of other cars three times in my 1957 Minor in 1970. At the time I put it down to having just passed my test, but with hindsight I think the brakes must have been a significant contributory factor. And remember, the cars in front are stopping a lot more suddenly now than they did back in the day! All depends what you intend using it for - I've upgraded mine to use it as a regular daily driver, hopefully also to be driven by my wife.

Admin
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Re: My Damascene Conversion

Postby Admin » Fri May 18, 2018 12:59 pm

Hi 'MM'
It's good to see my 'investment' in you is paying off already :lol: :lol: ! I hope you'll have plenty of fun among like-minded (or perhaps not, given your Damascene reference!) victims on the board here. You'll be pleased to note that, as per the image here,
screenshot.jpg
screenshot.jpg (76.82 KiB) Viewed 904 times
the difficulties you faced are still making their presence felt in Chez Webmaster, as I'm currently writing an auto-reply to support requests which will hopefully stem the current flow that mean its my better half outside cleaning the car ready for Minors On Tour next week when it should have been me! :wink:
Mike Dean
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ManyMinors
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Re: My Damascene Conversion

Postby ManyMinors » Fri May 18, 2018 1:10 pm

A 1957 Minor would have had slightly smaller brakes of course and maybe they weren't working very well! I've not felt any need to "upgrade" the brakes on my later 1098cc Minor. If kept in good condition and fitted with good quality parts and lining materials they are perfectly adequate for all normal daily use. I firmly believe that the reason Minor brakes have a poor reputation is that, in many cases, they are simply not working properly. There is no doubt that the brakes CAN be improved upon by fitting brakes from other cars but I do not feel it is necessary. It is all too easy to over-complicate what is a nice, simple and well designed car :wink: .

Shropshiremoggie
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Re: My Damascene Conversion

Postby Shropshiremoggie » Fri May 18, 2018 3:15 pm

Agree 100 %

Myrtles Man
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Re: My Damascene Conversion

Postby Myrtles Man » Fri May 18, 2018 3:23 pm

Interesting but, I suppose, unsurprising differences of opinion as to the suitability for purpose or otherwise of MM drum brakes. I certainly take your point Mark that traffic movement today, both speeds attained and stopping distances, is a long way removed from the halcyon(?) days of the Morris Minor, when the danger might well have been of an Ariel Leader crashing into the back of an emergency-braking moggie! As Mrs MM continues to express a wish to drive Myrtle too, I really must ensure that the anchors are as good as they can possibly be, albeit within their well-documented shortcomings. Maybe I'll end up in agreement with Many Minors and Shropshiremoggie in the matter. We'll see.

Mike - having been a thorn in your side (one of many, apparently) for the past few days I thought it only right to put my forum-contribution money where my complaining-about-not-being-able-to-register mouth is sooner rather than later. Still, Mrs D having to clean the car perhaps demonstrates that every cloud does indeed have a silver lining.

TDV102
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Re: My Damascene Conversion

Postby TDV102 » Fri May 18, 2018 5:00 pm

I used to be able to lock up the fronts on my 55 with standard drums. If well set up, regularly maintained and you don't tailgate they are certainly adequate. If you modify, disks are a must.
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liammonty
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Re: My Damascene Conversion

Postby liammonty » Fri May 18, 2018 5:01 pm

Mark Wilson wrote:
Fri May 18, 2018 12:34 pm
Myrtles Man wrote:
Fri May 18, 2018 9:33 am
as far as I'm aware, they weren't all crashing headlong into stuff back in the day.

Ermm - I crashed (fairly gently) into the back of other cars three times in my 1957 Minor in 1970. At the time I put it down to having just passed my test, but with hindsight I think the brakes must have been a significant contributory factor. And remember, the cars in front are stopping a lot more suddenly now than they did back in the day! All depends what you intend using it for - I've upgraded mine to use it as a regular daily driver, hopefully also to be driven by my wife.
To be fair Mark, if you make a habit of crashing into the back of people, it's because you're driving too close to them :wink: :lol:


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