Morris Minor Specialists

Discuss anything Morris Minor related.

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KeithL
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Morris Minor Specialists

Postby KeithL » Sat Apr 06, 2019 9:45 am

For servicing and routine maintenance of our Traveller I currently use a one-man garage about 25 miles away. He used to specialise in Morris Minors but as that business has reduced he probably does more modern cars than Minors. That got me thinking. If anything ever happened to him I would be scuppered. From a selfish point of view it would also be nicer to have someone closer to home (Bromsgrove in Worcestershire). I was talking to another member who lives in Oxfordshire and who currently does all his own work, but said that if he didn't he has no idea where he would go instead.

I appreciate most small garages probably know enough to do the basics on a Minor but should we be creating a list of garages who either specialise in Minors or have 'above average skills' in this area who members can recommend (especially if they are in or around Worcestershire)? This list might be of particular value to those who are new to Minor ownership.

If such a list already exists on the Forum then I apologise but I couldn't find one earlier.


Blaketon
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Re: Morris Minor Specialists

Postby Blaketon » Sat Apr 06, 2019 10:40 am

You could try these people - http://www.midlandclassicrestorations.co.uk/ to see if they do regular servicing.

philthehill
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Re: Morris Minor Specialists

Postby philthehill » Sat Apr 06, 2019 11:41 am

For the link above you can have two for the price of one as that is also the location of Peter May Engineering who are 'A' series specialists, especially MGs.


myoldjalopy
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Re: Morris Minor Specialists

Postby myoldjalopy » Sat Apr 06, 2019 12:07 pm

The issue Keith alludes to is not just a problem in Worcestershire, but all over the country. Unfortunately, we have arrived at a time when most of the old-time mechanics who worked on, knew and understood old cars in general, and Minors in particular, have either died or retired. I do all my own servicing and repairs as much as possible, but of the three mechanics I trusted to do the more difficult/long-winded jobs, one is dead and the other two retired. I don't know what I would do now if a job was required that was very difficult or impossible for me to do, either due to lack of skills/confidence or the necessary equipment. We have all heard horror stories on here of modern, so-called 'mechanics' who have made a pig's ear of working on someones car.
I would expect local branches to have a 'recommended' mechanic for those less mechanically-minded. If not, they ought to.

King Kenny
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Re: Morris Minor Specialists

Postby King Kenny » Sat Apr 06, 2019 2:10 pm

Many years ago I took my Traveller to HAL#*DS for an MOT. A young man told me it had failed on the suspension. He went on to tell me that they prised the suspension with an iron bar to check for any movement. He said it moved when levered. I told him that the suspension had rubber bushes and should move when prised with a bar. He quoted the book and maintained his position. Immediately I took the Traveller to an old fashioned garage and a mature man past it with no problem. Lesson learned, don't take it to a modern, profit orientated garage full of young mechanics.

Blaketon
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Re: Morris Minor Specialists

Postby Blaketon » Sat Apr 06, 2019 2:30 pm

This will become more of a problem as time goes on and it will mean travelling further afield, than would have been the case when most cars were still like Minors etc. In the same way, at one time, you could get parts from the local BL dealer (I had some for my MG Midget when I first owned it).

FBHVC are trying to address the issue by arranging for apprenticeships to be offered in the requisite trades but even so, the qualified trades people are bound to be spread more thinly. With my mind on a West Midlands based organisation, the Severn Valley Railway have their own apprentices (Not as volunteers but as paid employees) in order to keep the necessary skills alive.

Speaking personally, I grew up when most cars were still British and my father always worked on his own cars. When I first had a car, you could still do that without running an old one but there were signs (Especially with imported cars) that things were changing. The most recent car, I ever owned, was a 1987 VW Golf GTI and that wasn't bad to work on but I think it's gone downhill since and I have no wish to use a laptop to work on my own car!! Whilst I had an interest in Vintage (In car terms that basically means the 1920s), Veteran and pre war cars, as a youngster, I was interested in all cars. Since the 1980s, my interests have tended to not move forward with the times and it's a sobering thought to realise that the pre war cars I used to see at VSCC Prescott, as a child, weren't then much older, if any, than my cars (One of which is of the same type and year as my father then owned) are today.
Last edited by Blaketon on Sat Apr 06, 2019 6:55 pm, edited 4 times in total.

pgp001
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Re: Morris Minor Specialists

Postby pgp001 » Sat Apr 06, 2019 4:49 pm

I am able to do most of my own jobs on the car, I say "able" but not always "willing" :(

Luckily I have a local garage run by two brothers who live near me in the village, the garage is two minutes walk away.

A week on Monday my Traveller is going in for the new rear suspension kit to be fitted for me, they did the front end last year and made an excellent job, so it was an easy decision to let them do the back end as well. They are also going to give it an "MOT style" check over just for peace of mind.
If I buy all the parts they will just provide the labour and that arrangement works out very cost effective when paying by cash. :D

I am in West Yorkshire between Keighley and Skipton if anyone needs details.

Phil

Monty-4
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Re: Morris Minor Specialists

Postby Monty-4 » Sat Apr 06, 2019 6:10 pm

Stephen Baimbridge or "Mostly Minors" in Welling Green is a minor specialist, not too far from Worcester. PM me if you'd like his number.

There are a few hidden gems like him scattered around the country but they often don't have websites or advertise, yet tick along nicely by word of mouth. Half the problem is finding them!
68' 4-door Saloon, another 'Monty'.

KeithL
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Re: Morris Minor Specialists

Postby KeithL » Sat Apr 06, 2019 6:51 pm

Monty-4 wrote:
Sat Apr 06, 2019 6:10 pm
Half the problem is finding them!
Exactly so, which is why I think we need to create a directory of sorts.


Mark Wilson
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Re: Morris Minor Specialists

Postby Mark Wilson » Sat Apr 06, 2019 7:14 pm

Blaketon wrote:
Sat Apr 06, 2019 2:30 pm
it's a sobering thought to realise that the pre war cars I used to see at VSCC Prescott, as a child, weren't then much older, if any, than my cars are today.
This telescoping of time always fascinates me. When the film Genevieve, featuring vintage cars, was made in 1953 the car in the title, a Daracq, was 49 years old. My Traveller, one of the last, rolled off the line 49 years ago in November. I always refer to it as one of the "new ones".

Chief
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Re: Morris Minor Specialists

Postby Chief » Sat Apr 06, 2019 11:25 pm

Exactly so, which is why I think we need to create a directory of sorts.
One of the local branches I once contacted did have a list of garages though they weren't recommended garages, just local ones in the area that may be okay to use. Sadly their main recommendation was a garage that I had already used previously and which I was eager to avoid at all cost.

In the past the MMOC were (and I presume still are?) against any negative accounts of work done being put on the forums while equally supporting positive experiences being shared. Perhaps a directory of positive experiences organised into a list by county/country would therefore be an accepted idea or a per-branch thread with local branch member experiences? This way no one gets named and shamed, only praised.

As an aside I thoroughly recommend Minor Services in Witchford (near Ely) :-)

ianmack
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Re: Morris Minor Specialists

Postby ianmack » Sun Apr 07, 2019 8:34 am

The FBHVC website used to have a list of garages recommended for repairs and mots on old cars, but after a quick browse I couldn’t find it. Chatting to local enthusiasts is probably as good a way as any of finding the good ones in your area.

The only answer to a silly mot fail is simply not to go there again. It is worth also having a regular place, not only for you to trust them but also so they know you. Apparently the powers that be have people visiting garages with cars to see the quality of testing and a local garage was picked up for not spotting a missing fuel cap seal. The penalty for this is suspension of the tester’s approval for a period of months, a major blow for a small business. This might make them wary of strangers.

And frankly Halfrauds is the last place I’d go!

Blaketon
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Re: Morris Minor Specialists

Postby Blaketon » Sun Apr 07, 2019 12:18 pm

Mark Wilson wrote:
Sat Apr 06, 2019 7:14 pm
My Traveller, one of the last, rolled off the line 49 years ago in November. I always refer to it as one of the "new ones".
My Traveller is also a late one. Was yours 49 last November or will it be 49 this coming November? I only ask, as when I asked for a Heritage certificate for mine, they said none were available for Adderley Park cars. I think yours would be one and if so, I'd be interested to know how you know it dates from November. There might be hope for me finding out more about mine.

I have the Genevieve film on DVD.

SteveClem
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Re: Morris Minor Specialists

Postby SteveClem » Sun Apr 07, 2019 7:03 pm

So lucky here, the local garage is owned by an old car enthusiast and his son will take over from him in a few years. They are all steeped in classic cars, and the place usually has lots about. 5 minutes walk :D

SteveClem
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Re: Morris Minor Specialists

Postby SteveClem » Sun Apr 07, 2019 7:05 pm

PS. They run a microbrewery behind the garage...'Hairy Brewers '

Mark Wilson
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Re: Morris Minor Specialists

Postby Mark Wilson » Sun Apr 07, 2019 7:19 pm

Blaketon wrote:
Sun Apr 07, 2019 12:18 pm
I'd be interested to know how you know it dates from November. There might be hope for me finding out more about mine.
My date isn't definitive, it was extrapolated from a couple of dates I came across. Looking back through old threads we have both been here before!

viewtopic.php?f=1&t=65705&p=596761&hili ... er#p596761


Looks like my calculation then was that mine was built in October 70. Although only registered in July 1971, with a chassis number of 1286055 it seems to be definitely before the end of 1970, so not competing with yours for newness!

KeithL
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Re: Morris Minor Specialists

Postby KeithL » Sat Apr 27, 2019 8:34 am

Monty-4 wrote:
Sat Apr 06, 2019 6:10 pm
Stephen Baimbridge or "Mostly Minors" in Welling Green is a minor specialist, not too far from Worcester. PM me if you'd like his number.
It's Steve Baimbridge (in Twyning, near Tewkesbury) that I currently use and he's brilliant. We picked up our Traveller from him yesterday after some work and it's running like a dream now. I'm just terrified that if anything happens to him, or he packs it in, or moves away I'm scuppered, although it appears there are some alternatives Ombersley way if that happened.


Nickol
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Re: Morris Minor Specialists

Postby Nickol » Sat Apr 27, 2019 9:14 am

This Forum to me is my "local MM expert".

I cannot recall the number of times, when faced with a Problem that many have contributed ideas or indeed knew the solution. As can be imagined, there are precious few MM specialists in my part of the world so the Forum is all I have............but up to now, more than enough.
Gott schütze mich vorm Sturm und Wind und Autos, die aus England sind.
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TDV102
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Re: Morris Minor Specialists

Postby TDV102 » Sat Apr 27, 2019 8:31 pm

My local old car specialist retired a couple of years back. Always used to enjoy going there as you never knew what would be there at the time. Used to be loads of MGs, occasional Astons and Jags and much other interesting oldies along with the moderns. He was also very reasonably priced
Good home offered for custom splittie

Apolaustic
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Re: Morris Minor Specialists

Postby Apolaustic » Tue May 28, 2019 9:29 am

Dear All,

I’ve just fitted LED headlights to my car, and would like the alignment checked properly (I can’t readily do it at home and I’d like to know it’s (a) right and (b) going to pass the MOT. Is anyone able to recommend a friendly workshop in Preston, Lancashire, which could help?

If so, please could you let me know?

Thank you, Paul
Apolaustic
1966 white/red convertible (1098cc with alternator, electronic ignition & brake servo)


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