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Mini Magazine - Summer 2018

CLUBMAN SALOON THE BUILD

CLUBMAN SALOON THE BUILD CONTINUED... Stunning red interior was cleaned using only mild detergent to ensure its ’70s smell was retained! The driver’s seat was repaired by Auto Retrim. During the build Calum and Trevor were keen to repair and save as much of the vehicle as possible, a process that involved cutting out bad metal and painstaking fabrication. It also saw several oversills removed - a process that Paul likens to an archaeological dig, as when each layer was stripped back it revealed years of cheap MoT-style welding and repairs! Where panels were beyond repair only Heritage panels were used, and due to Calum and Trevor’s dedication over several months, a large percentage of the original shell remained when it was treated to fresh coats of that lovely Antelope paint. Paul and Francesca describe it as one of the finest restorations they have ever seen, and it’s not hard to agree with them. Naturally, the work has extended to every part of the running gear too, which Gear lever is another original component. is now pristine throughout. Paul was keen to keep the smooth-riding hydrolastic, which was phased out in 1971 and is a rare sight nowadays. The rear subframe and hydro pipes are new, but the original displacers could be retained after being re-hosed. Everything else has been faithfully rebuilt to factory spec, save a few sensible upgrades. “We only had a disc brake conversion purely for safety and driveability as we use the car regularly, and we also had polybushes put on the front – again for additional safety and driveability,” says Francesca. Turning his attention to the wheels, Paul had the original 10-inch steels refurbished and then powdercoated in silver by Kingswinford Alloys. Having sourced a period 1970 Clubman brochure to use as a guide for many of the details, Paul sourced a set of new old stock wheel 18

Looking fab from every angle, especially on those refurbed 10-inch steels. The finished Clubman looks model-perfect. All instruments are original or period-spec. Complete with period embellishments! embellishers and refurbished the original hubcaps. A brand-new set of Dunlop 145-section SP Sport Aquajet tyres were also purchased from Vintage Tyres at Beaulieu as they were the closest to the original tread patterns of the era. PERFECT CONTRAST When it came to fitting the car back up, Paul wanted to preserve its original and distinctive red interior. “It was in great order considering the age of the car, but the driver’s seat needed repairing where it had torn next to the vinyl-welded centre, and the rear-wheel arch covers were damaged, so we went to Dave Tedstone at Auto Retrim in Cradley Heath as he’d helped us with our other classic Minis,” says Paul. “He repaired the driver’s seat as though nothing had happened. He also colour-matched and made some new rear-wheel arch covers. We then set about deep cleaning all the seats and doorcards “We set about deep cleaning the seats and doorcards using elbow grease” using elbow grease and mild detergent as we didn’t want to ruin the patina or get rid of the lovely old car smell.” The remarkable attention to detail was notched up even more for the carpet, which was in a shocking state. “We took time to order samples from lots of different suppliers as we were not happy with some of the smooth cheaper types of carpet that didn’t match the original,” Paul explains. “The only company that came close was Tech Autos. Its Claret Red tufted deep-pile carpet was a great match, but was only supplied with no heel pads or two heel pads, which were the wrong type as it’s not a Mini-specific supplier. Our car only had one pad from the factory, so we spoke to Josh at Tech Autos and he asked us to supply our own. We scoured the web looking for a piece of original carpet of any colour that had the correct single pad of the correct pattern, which was cut out and hand-stitched on to the new carpet so that could be as near to original as possible. We were very pleased with the final result.” Staying inside, the top rail was badly damaged on the driver’s side, with ripped vinyl and chunks of foam missing. Luckily, Paul managed to wrestle the top rail out of the car without removing the windscreen – no mean feat – before he and Francesca repaired and re-covered it with a matching textured black vinyl. Again, the end result is fantastic. Of course, there was still the small 19

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