A very slow build of a custom traveller

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Steve Phillips
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A very slow build of a custom traveller

Postby Steve Phillips » Wed Mar 27, 2019 9:37 am

Hi Boys and girls of the Minor Forum, Specifically the custom section,

I thought I should start a build thread of my traveller, it will only be a mild custom, nothing to cleaver, it was a one owner car form new, two owners now I have it, I’ve owned it about 10 years but just had it stored up, so I figure now is a good time to make a start on it,

Now this will be a very slow build as it will have to fit in with life, work, walking the dog etc etc, so don’t expect updates every few days, but I’ll post an update as soon as there is something worth posting,

The plan is to build it mainly out of parts I have laying around already, so not looking to spend a fortune on it, I have a criteria for the build which currently is as follows (but may be subject to change)

Fully restored shell, not patched and bodged as I only intend to restore the shell once, not keep re patching every year for its MOT, now although the floors and chassis legs are really showing their age I want to restore the shell not cut the bottom out and put a full chassis under it, why? Because I still want a Minor traveller not a full blown hot-rod, with the amount of rot in this shell a chassis would be the easier and possibly the more sensible route but that’s not the route I wish to go,?
The suspension will have to be modified to make it practical and reliable for daily use (so no more trunnions for me) front will be a fabricated setup and rear will be a trailing link design rather than leaf springs, it’s got to be a comfortable drive even with a slightly lowered stance,
Brakes, discs all round so no drums to mess about with on the back, and duel circuit for safety,
Engine 2ltr fiat, why? Because I have one sitting here, and it’s still the prettiest engine out there, ok so a YB is a close second,, but for now fiat is my choice,
Interior subtle but very comfortable, if it’s a daily driver then it needs a good heater, good seats, some sounds, phone charger, cup holder etc etc, all the goodies we expect from our plastic modern cars,

Body almost standard in appearance, not looking for radical bodywork here, just the odd nip and tuck to tidy everything up, I grew up around minors and so I like the relatively factory look more than I like radical body mods, I would like the great unwashed to walk past and say “that’s nice” and for those of us with an understanding of minors to see lots of subtle little mods all over, mods like no front overrides, better rear lights for safety, improved door locks and possibly handles, central locking for convenience, all that sort of thing, for me subtle is the road I wish to follow, (so it will probably end up chopped with a V8 in then),,,,, lol, well V8s really not the plan so hopefully I won’t be drawn to the dark side,

The biggest thing is it will have to be completely useable 7 days a week, for 20,000 miles a year as it will replace my modern daily so it has to be enjoyable and reliable,

So there you go, that’s the plan and hopefully in a couple of years’ time I’ll have a finished traveller and I’ll be able to say “I love it when a plan comes together” (oh now what TV show was that)?

Oh one last thing, the traveller will have to carry 2 passengers every day, one of which you will see in some of the pictures I'll post.

Regards to all

Steve
Attachments
traveller first shot.jpg
Just needs a polish.
traveller first shot.jpg (185.64 KiB) Viewed 1116 times
trav wood.jpg
Hmm perhaps a local repair to the wood.
trav wood.jpg (208.14 KiB) Viewed 1116 times
trav gove box.jpg
A nest but for what?
trav gove box.jpg (146.87 KiB) Viewed 1116 times
traveller side.jpg
Now where's the varish.
traveller side.jpg (224.42 KiB) Viewed 1116 times
traveller rear.jpg
Oh no I lost a rear light.
traveller rear.jpg (208.5 KiB) Viewed 1116 times
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Bowie69
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Re: A very slow build of a custom traveller

Postby Bowie69 » Wed Mar 27, 2019 10:23 am

You are one brave man :)

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Steve Phillips
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Re: A very slow build of a custom traveller

Postby Steve Phillips » Wed Mar 27, 2019 10:29 am

Trust me it’s worse than it looks in the initial pictures,
As will be seen in the next "thrilling instalment"
But I figure it still looks like a traveller so it must be repairable,

Steve
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pgp001
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Re: A very slow build of a custom traveller

Postby pgp001 » Wed Mar 27, 2019 11:56 am

Looks like the wood will need a fresh coat of preservative :D
Good luck with the rebuild.

Phil

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Steve Phillips
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Re: A very slow build of a custom traveller

Postby Steve Phillips » Wed Mar 27, 2019 1:16 pm

Thankyou,
I feel i may have a couple of local repairs to do to the wood before re varnishing,
but shouldn't take long,,
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Re: A very slow build of a custom traveller

Postby Myrtles Man » Wed Mar 27, 2019 3:41 pm

A decent detailer should be able to sort that in no time. :o

cococola
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Re: A very slow build of a custom traveller

Postby cococola » Wed Mar 27, 2019 6:47 pm

Good luck with the rebuild it will be very satisfying I will follow with interest :)
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Re: A very slow build of a custom traveller

Postby Steve Phillips » Wed Mar 27, 2019 7:00 pm

Thankyou,

I'll post again once soon showing the strip down,

I already know how bad it really is, but ill leave that for my next post,

so you can all have a little chuckle at just how bad it is, (iI did)

and we do this for fun??
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cococola
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Re: A very slow build of a custom traveller

Postby cococola » Wed Mar 27, 2019 7:12 pm

Ive just replaced the wood on my traveller and it is a very satisfying job, take your time and be prepared for welding once the back has been removed. :D
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Steve Phillips
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Re: A very slow build of a custom traveller

Postby Steve Phillips » Wed Mar 27, 2019 8:47 pm

Thank you for your encouragement.
I agree wood replacement is very satisfying.
I've always enjoyed restoring travellers most out of all minors.
For this build though the rear frame will be a custom build not off the shelf from Mr Forman or similar.
And I'm under no illusion about the amount of welding that awaits me. I think I'll measure it by the yard rather than by the inch.
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Re: A very slow build of a custom traveller

Postby Steve Phillips » Thu Mar 28, 2019 5:18 pm

So we pulled the engine ot of the bay and stripped the front wings off,

and well I think a picture says a thousand words well two words in this case "OH bugger" lol
Attachments
traveller engine bay.jpg
Opps, no wonder the tracking was out...
traveller engine bay.jpg (196.96 KiB) Viewed 1044 times
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Re: A very slow build of a custom traveller

Postby Steve Phillips » Sun Mar 31, 2019 5:26 pm

Made a start on clearing out the back of the traveller today,
Well it is made of wood so it has been used as a shed for the last few years,

We also started to remove some of the wood today, amazingly we needed spanners and screwdrivers for some of it, although some of it came off with a gentle tug and shake, some of the wood has gone so soft it just breaks up in your hands, (hmm not sure I’ll get away with just a re- varnish)

And you won’t be surprised to learn we can see even more rot now, No big surprise really,,,
Attachments
traveller in rear.jpg
handy for storage these travellers, so the mice tell me..
traveller in rear.jpg (189.8 KiB) Viewed 1011 times
traveller boot floor.jpg
Hmm another hole theres a surprise
traveller boot floor.jpg (208.53 KiB) Viewed 1011 times
traveller NS wood.jpg
yeh it will clean up ok.... i think
traveller NS wood.jpg (210.24 KiB) Viewed 1011 times
traveller OS waist rail.jpg
definately beyond help.
traveller OS waist rail.jpg (212.19 KiB) Viewed 1011 times
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Re: A very slow build of a custom traveller

Postby irmscher » Tue Apr 02, 2019 1:27 am

Hi Steve will be following this with great interest .The body looks really bad but you must know what you are doing and have the skill .Your dog looks lovely :D

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Re: A very slow build of a custom traveller

Postby Steve Phillips » Tue Apr 02, 2019 2:07 pm

Hi,

thanks for your comments,

No it’s not in a good state, I think I’ll need more panels than are available for minors, and lots of the panels I’ll need will be need modifying from what’s available so I’ll be fabricating quiet a lot of them.

Surely half the fun, is taking something that is this dead and resurrecting it, Life would be too easy if I started with a good shell, and where would the fun be in that.. Lol

Its slowly coming apart, once it’s all stripped I’ll bead blast it and see just how little I have left to work with, have to say I don’t think I’ll have much left after blasting.

But then the fun of the build can really start, and hopefully I know what I’m doing but ask me again in a couple of years,, and I’ll answer you then.

Yes he is lovely thanks, he was cute in December 2018 when I got him, (that’s him in my signature) but a bit bigger now as you can see,

The wood foot fell off the other day as I moved the car, see its trying to strip itself.. Clever little car..


Well should get the rest of the wood off this weekend, fingers crossed.
Attachments
trav wood foot.jpg
opps it just fell off.
trav wood foot.jpg (177.64 KiB) Viewed 962 times
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cococola
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Re: A very slow build of a custom traveller

Postby cococola » Tue Apr 02, 2019 6:07 pm

I replaced all of my Traveller wood recently Steve complete with alot of welding and new panel replacement. One of the best suggestions that I had was to purchase Ray Newells book, Morris Minor Traveller: The Complete Companion which is so informative and was a big help to me.
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Re: A very slow build of a custom traveller

Postby Steve Phillips » Wed Apr 03, 2019 10:15 am

Thanks for the suggestion but this will be a bespoke frame built on the car so unless Young Mr Newell has finally turned to the dark side and published a section on bespoke custom builds not sure it will help, but thanks for the thought, :)

many years ago (about 1992-3) I bought the practical classics book which followed the restoration of their traveller, seem to remember it started out in Trafalgar blue but ended up light blue, it was started at one of the minor specialists but ended up at pool lanes classics after it got a got out of shape, not sure what happened to the traveller in the end I heard it got broken up as it was so cut about but don’t know for sure,

but anyway that was a very helpful book, I probably lost my copy years ago but was a very good book.

Ahh just found these links below one showing the book (poss. out of print now) and one from this forum mentioning the car.

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Traveller-Rest ... 1873098308

viewtopic.php?t=18960

Anyway, need to get the old girl stripped and bead blasted first, then I can look at where to start.
I want a very ridged shell as it will get lots of regular hard use so lots of improvements planned to the structure and rear frame
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Re: A very slow build of a custom traveller

Postby Steve Phillips » Fri Apr 05, 2019 10:55 am

So a little more progress, well I think its progress,,

The engine bay floors and chassis legs are err…. Well to be honest absolutely dead. Once it’s on its side I’ll take pic of the chassis leg, it’s not pretty I warn you now… lol

As for the wood and rear bodywork, well I think the pictures speak for themselves, but fear not my lord I have a cunning plan,,,
Next will be to remove the gearbox, front and rear suspension wiring etc. then I’ll see about bead blasting it. I think I’ll only blast the parts of the shell that are staying, (so that won’t be much then…)

But I’m hoping to re-use the front wings, bonnet, front panel, bumpers, front doors, and poss. rear wings, all the panels on the car except the front wings appear to be the original’s as far as I can tell, so I will try to restore and modify the panels I have rather than buying new.

As you can see in the pictures a lot of the wood has disintegrated as it was stripped, so it’s all destined for the bon fire this weekend.
Attachments
eng bay floor 1.jpg
opps, just a little rust.
eng bay floor 1.jpg (199.03 KiB) Viewed 875 times
rear doors off.jpg
dont think these will be any good,
rear doors off.jpg (203.54 KiB) Viewed 875 times
side panels off.jpg
think its all beyond help.
side panels off.jpg (197.93 KiB) Viewed 875 times
stripped rear.jpg
needs more than varnish.
stripped rear.jpg (195.72 KiB) Viewed 875 times
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Re: A very slow build of a custom traveller

Postby irmscher » Wed Apr 10, 2019 12:03 am

A lot of work too do but will save another traveller :D

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Re: A very slow build of a custom traveller

Postby Steve Phillips » Tue Apr 23, 2019 12:43 pm

So over the last couple of weeks we got the shell completely stripped (although these pics show it with wheels on still)

So now the shell is sitting on its dolly and in the blast room ready to start blasting it, (carefully) so here’s a couple of pics showing what we have to work with, which isn’t much I can tell you.

I’ll post a few more rotten floor pics in the next few days for you all to laugh at while it’s in being blasted, once blasting’s finished I can sweep up what’s left of it and form a plan on how to resurrect it.

First pics show the floor pans, including a fist size hole in the O/S pan,

Next is the N/S A post, as rotten as it is the door still fitted correctly and opened and shut ok, although I don’t think it would need much force to move it out of place.

Next is the N/S rear inner wheel arch, it’s been repaired in years gone by, and has rotted out towards the very rear,

Last is the boot floor, well actually it’s not the boot floor, it would have been but it fell off when we took the wood off,

For all of you that have been in the minor / classic car scene for a few years you’ll be looking at this saying “Yeh and” as you will have seen all this before, and probably spent too many days / weekends welding up your cars, after all its just rusty metal,
Attachments
trav NS floor.jpg
trav NS floor.jpg (199.3 KiB) Viewed 685 times
trav OS floor.JPG
trav OS floor.JPG (169.33 KiB) Viewed 685 times
trav NS door post.jpg
trav NS door post.jpg (196.64 KiB) Viewed 685 times
trav NS rear arch.jpg
trav NS rear arch.jpg (194.38 KiB) Viewed 685 times
trav boot floor missing.jpg
trav boot floor missing.jpg (202.82 KiB) Viewed 685 times
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Bowie69
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Re: A very slow build of a custom traveller

Postby Bowie69 » Tue Apr 23, 2019 1:38 pm

Actually that's a lot less bad than I imagined it to be :)

One of my travellers essentially fell into two parts and the b post completely separated from the sill.


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