Dud Cars.....

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Dud Cars.....

Postby RapidAssistant » Mon Mar 25, 2013 1:18 pm

After reading moonbeam's excellent suggestion on the "Lost Car Dealership" thread, who want's to have a rant about the awful motors either you, your parents, family, best friends, etc had....and the Glasgow car dealership it was bought from.

I'll kick off - ours was a white Fiat 127 - a '77 S-reg, bought from Prossers (British Leyland garage in Blochairn/Royston area), which was quite possibly the worst car we ever had. Apart from redefining the word rust - no car since has ever managed to turn to iron oxide faster than this one, one replacement engine, duff electrics, was broken into twice. My dad had the season ticket to the parts department at Ritchies on Shields Road. This was the car which I was forced to be taken to primary school in during the early 1980s when I were a lad - and it was painfully embarrassing when the other kids were being picked up in Cavaliers and Sierras at the school gate, and we had this desparate heap. I was almost envious of the kids that were being picked up in new Ladas bought from Peat Road Motors..... To this day my dad still goes on about it being the biggest automotive mistake of his life, and he still blames my (late) mother for choosing it!!!
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Re: Dud Cars.....

Postby ibtg » Mon Mar 25, 2013 3:49 pm

We bought a Chrysler Alpine from the Car Market. It looked in reasonable condition when we bought it, but we discovered it to have some flaws….

Such as, it couldn’t seem to pump the fuel to the engine successfully when we went up a hill (Unfortunately at the time, we lived at the top of a hill). It got there eventually, but very slowly. We had to resort to be pretending to look for an address to save embarrassment.

It also rusted extremely quickly, to the extent that when a friend leaned on the wing while talking to me, his elbow went right through the metal.

We sold it very cheaply, (having told the buyer of all its faults, I might add), and went off on holiday. On our return, the police called and told us that the car had been found at the bottom of the Clyde, with no-one in it, thankfully, but with a toolbox in the boot. The toolbox had our name and address in it, despite it not being ours! The registration of said car began TDS – you can see why it was christened Tedious. :roll:

My brother bought a three-wheeled Robin Reliant second-hand as his first car. It used to blow over in moderate winds on Great Western Road. He would just sit in the driver’s seat until some kind soul stopped and righted it for him, so he could continue on his way. ::): Luckily someone always did stop.
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Re: Dud Cars.....

Postby moonbeam » Mon Mar 25, 2013 8:16 pm

My brother bought a second hand Allegro. Two days after he bought it went round a roundabout down at Bowling on the A82 when the front wheel sort of fell off. It got taken back to a Leyland dealership to be told -they all do that. I had a Marina and the petrol tank rusted through.The car was only 18 months old.Quickly got rid off. I mentioned my neighbours Moskovitch.The guy bought it new. Spent every day polishing it and showing it off. His first new car. Felt really sorry for him when it went on fire and the petrol tank exploded just as the fire brigade arrived. Another friend bought a new Lancia. Took it for its first MOT. Failed due to rust. The engine mounting brackets had rusted right through and the engine was not really attached to the rest of the car! Yes I did buy a Fiat. Rampant rust under body filler. Yes a friend lent on a wing and his arm went right through! It was a Fiat "Sport" 850. I think the "sport" was getting the thing all to work at the same time.The starter motor never seemed to work. There seemed to be two types of starter motor as I had the "sport" it had a slightly different mounting from the ordinary 850. The wiper motor had a mind of its own.The suspension/shock absorbers were replaced and the headlights filled with water. A saturday morning season ticket for Shields motors. I got a regular customer discount! What annoyed me was it would take maybe 5 weeks to get an exhaust or a suspension part. Then something else would fail like some sort of obscure electrical part that meant the direction indicators would not work.
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Re: Dud Cars.....

Postby MacotheIsles » Mon Mar 25, 2013 8:23 pm

There's something about the dodgy car that's truly hilarious in a Fawlty Towers branch-thrashing, or clownmobile, sort of way: espaecially when it's other people's dodgy cars. Not being a driver myself I'm something of a passenger in this and I can truly say my sides are aching with laughter. Bring on the cut'n'shuts!
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Re: Dud Cars.....

Postby Boxer6 » Mon Mar 25, 2013 8:44 pm

My first car was a Mk1 VW Golf I bought for £50 from a mates' mate. It had an automatic choke (fairly rare for the time IIRC) which didn't ever go off, meaning I could trundle down the road at 30mph without touching the throttle!

It was red (originally!), but faded very quickly to a less-than pleasant dusky pinkish sort of colour. Then, to cap it all, after about 6 months of ownership the brake master cylinder "let go" as I was going down one of the steepest hills in Kirkintilloch! (Washington Road - Warbaby will know it by now, I'm sure!)

Sold it for £75, with the master cylinder sitting on the passenger seat - the only car (of many) I've ever made a profit on! 8O
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Re: Dud Cars.....

Postby moonbeam » Tue Mar 26, 2013 4:45 pm

That Fiat sport thing I had. It had a major design fault-not the rusting as they were all made from regurgitated washing machine steel. OK it was built for hot sunny days on the Adriatic etc. They put ruddy big louvres in the rear over the engine-every time it rained the rain got into the engine bay and in the snow-just forget it! Then I had the Escort Mark 1 (CHS380J) what tin of baked beans are you now! Every time it rained the passengers footwell filled with water. The floor rusted through and an ex-girlfriend put her foot right through the floor. The front suspension strut came through the inner wing top when I hit a nasty pothole on a dark wet night in Maryhill Road. Same Escort going with ex gf to posh "do" in Edinburgh -the gear lever came away in my hand. So there we were going along past Haymarket Station with me saying "We have a problem" holding the gear lever up. We got train back and AA dumped it at my door.I got that Escort at a car auction for around £300 in the 1970s.
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Re: Dud Cars.....

Postby RapidAssistant » Tue Mar 26, 2013 4:49 pm

Probably the biggest stinker I ever owned was a Datsun Sunny 150Y estate that was foisted on me by our neighbours shortly after I passed my test. Cost me £50, the paint was probably all that was holding it together, complete with Fred Flintstone floor - something I only discovered when I started to hear the carpet squishing under my feet when it rained.
One hilarious episode was when the alternator regulator failed and the battery overheated and burst – the rancid smell of rotten eggs (hydrogen sulphide gas from boiling battery acid), everyone on the street wondered where it was coming from!!

Later I put it into a ditch on an icy road yet that still didn’t kill the effing thing!! But it finally got its comeuppance when the cylinder head gasket blew and I cracked the head.

Suffice to say, no tears were shed when I saw it getting towed on its final journey to its date with the crusher….
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Re: Dud Cars.....

Postby MacotheIsles » Tue Mar 26, 2013 4:53 pm

I have memories of being able to watch the road going by through holes in the floor of some of my dad's old cars. I think that was more or less normal in those days. He had one (a Cotswold-Blue Wolsey or somesuch) where the gear lever was little more than a spindly steel rod . It eventually snapped off somewhere near Balfron where the locals were cannibals, and to be stranded was a matter of life and death.
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Re: Dud Cars.....

Postby RDR » Tue Mar 26, 2013 8:50 pm

Where do you start with dud cars?

Almost a rite of passage for young males I think.

My dad had a Vauxhall Ventura, which managed to vent the exhaust fumes into the passenger cabin, which made us kids in the back quite ill, until they worked out what the problem was. Steering went, one trip to the lake district and we ended up in a ditch at the back of the Sun Inn, Grassmere.

First car I had was a Hillman Imp. Awful car, mechanically, fan belt went in Eglington Street one night. It was hard up against the rear bulkhead and was practically an engine out job to change it. I was with my girlfriend who ended up my ex-wife and needless to say didn't have any tights on and her socks didn't quite work the same as a temporary fanbelt!

Then had a Renault 16. Nice spacious car but couldn't pull the top of a rice pudding. No door handle on the front passenger door, which had to be opened with pliers. I hadn't explained this to my girlfriend (yes the same one destined to be the ex-wife again!) and when I leant over to open the door for her was rewarded with a slap for touching her knee. Handbrake, which was the umbrella sort, under the dash, wouldn't work, so I carried a brick in the car to wedge under the wheels whe I parked.

There followed a sucession of clapped out minis (the orginal ones). I loved them and had one in British Racing Green, they weren't however the most realiable of cars. Sub frame went on one, when I had the three kids in the back, in the middle of West Lothian.

Two Skoda Estelles followed. Build like tanks they were. Steering went on both. Prone to overheating. I used to leave them unlocked outside the Manchester hospital I worked in at the time, but nobody would steal them!

I could go on......
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Re: Dud Cars.....

Postby Boxer6 » Tue Mar 26, 2013 9:07 pm

I had an Imp too!

Magic wee car it was, despite needing loads of new head gaskets (head got skimmed in the end, to no avail; the place that did it - behind the Kelvin Hall, but name escapes me - is still there) and a new thermostat. Engine out took 15 minutes from a standing start - the rear bumper came off with about 4 bolts, undo the rubber "spiders" on the drive shafts and unclip the throttle and choke cables and fuel line, simply roll the car away with the engine on blocks! Easy peasy - my dad and I did that at least half-a-dozen times!

Another time, I had to brake hard to avoid someone who pulled out in front of me and the front wishbone detached completely from the bottom of the spare wheel well! Tied it up with a bit of rope, drove around in it like that til I could get it to a welder.

Ah .. those were the days!
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Re: Dud Cars.....

Postby Vinegar Tom » Tue Mar 26, 2013 10:50 pm

MacotheIsles wrote:I have memories of being able to watch the road going by through holes in the floor of some of my dad's old cars. I think that was more or less normal in those days.


I have memories of holes in floors too. Dad had a Morris Oxford and an Austin Cambridge. At least one had holes repaired with sheet metal and pop-rivets. Mind you we had it lucky in Waterfoot; the main risk there was in-breeding, not cannibalism.
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Re: Dud Cars.....

Postby RDR » Wed Mar 27, 2013 7:25 am

Boxer6 wrote:I had an Imp too!

Magic wee car it was, despite needing loads of new head gaskets (head got skimmed in the end, to no avail; the place that did it - behind the Kelvin Hall, but name escapes me - is still there) and a new thermostat. Engine out took 15 minutes from a standing start - the rear bumper came off with about 4 bolts, undo the rubber "spiders" on the drive shafts and unclip the throttle and choke cables and fuel line, simply roll the car away with the engine on blocks! Easy peasy - my dad and I did that at least half-a-dozen times!

Another time, I had to brake hard to avoid someone who pulled out in front of me and the front wishbone detached completely from the bottom of the spare wheel well! Tied it up with a bit of rope, drove around in it like that til I could get it to a welder.

Ah .. those were the days!


:) Maybe I expected to much of a vehicle that cost me £75!
You'll mind that the rear window of the Imp was a curious affair on hinges, maybe the forerunner of the hatchback. In mine it used to fall out on a regular basis, giving great amusement to bus drivers, as I used to have to stop, scuttle round the back and pick it up.
I had the wishbones go as well, on at least one occasion when going round the roundabout at Croftfoot!
The gearbox finally fell out of it and it went to the great scrappy in the sky.
My very first own car, so despite all that, I do have fond memories.....
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Re: Dud Cars.....

Postby banjo » Wed Mar 27, 2013 8:12 pm

guy round from me is working on a talbot campervan at the moment,good luck mate.i spotted a bathroom installing firms van tonight with the registration number W33 BOG.
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Re: Dud Cars.....

Postby Doorstop » Wed Mar 27, 2013 9:34 pm

::):
I like him ... He says "Okie Dokie!"
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Re: Dud Cars.....

Postby DickyHart » Fri Mar 29, 2013 2:26 am

My dad had a hillman avenger, the engine exploded on keppochhill road one day, and we just pushed it down to the scrappy about 100 yards away next to possil road. he replaced it with an allegro and the windscreen fell out when he drove it out of the place he bought it from!! :roll:
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