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Restorations and Renovations

This lovely hand built car and 10cc racing engine first appeared in 2016 and ended up with John Goodall who did an amazing job of restoration. At some point in its life it did have scale wire wheels, but only a couple of hubs remained. One suspects that these could not deal with the power from the quite advanced motor. It is most unusual to find a home build, full race 10cc motor from that period, especially using magnesium castings. A rare feature of this car is a magneto running off the crown wheel at the back of the gearbox. Makes timing the engine an interesting operation though.

Dr Rankin lived in Barnoldswick, close to the Davies Charlton engine factory. During the late 1940s he built a couple of tethered cars using only hand tools, both fitted with Wildcat motors that came directly from Hefin Davies. Any machining that was required was carried out by colleagues at the local model engineering society. This car has the complete engine and drive unit sprung along the lines of the early Drysdale plans. Gearbox is from 1066, as are the wheels and tyres. The tyres were still good enough to run, even after nearly seventy years in storage. Hours of cleaning and freeing off a completely gummed up motor had the car running again in 2019.

There were a number of clubs and tracks up in Yorkshire and the car below most likely came from Guisely. Two of them were discovered and offered for sale on ebay back in 2014. They were both based on the Ian Moore #7 design that held the British record in the hands of his wife Ivy. One of the cars had a Dooling engine and was complete, which went to the States and this one as a bag of bits had little interest so was snapped up by a British enthusiast. After a good clean a root through the bits, it was found to be all there and required little more than careful assembly It still had the remote glow connecting lead and plug. The top had seen better days, but thanks to Oliver Monk's expert welder, that was soon restored to its former glory.

The second of the two cars built by the late Dr Rankin. This one has independent, swing axle front suspension, controlled by three large leaf springs. It was originally fitted with a DC Wildcat Diesel that was radially mounted on a beefy steel mount. This was later replaced with a 10cc Westbury Ensign, turning the ZN wheels via a massive Westbury gearbox. Unfortunately the tyres had perished badly, but with four new tyres, a great deal of elbow grease and a spare 1066 body, the car lives again. 

This 1066 Conquest car was discovered at Old Warden in 2004, and by the strangest coincidence its original Conqueror motor was for sale from another engine enthusiast elsewhere on the field. Both car and engine had originated from the collection of Gerry Buck but nearly twenty years apart. The same enthusiast also had the original front axle assembly lurking in one of the many boxes he had just picked up. A Conqueror replaced the Nordec seen here to complete the rebuild of an original car.

The late Roger Howe started building this Buck 2A from an Electra chassis kit but made the unusual choice of a Gerald Smith Redwing motor. This in turn led to the chassis and motor being parted after it failed to sell at Gildings auction in 2004. Luckily, a Retro Club member was able to reunite them after the Watford swapmeet in 2005 and complete the build. The body shape is wrong because the Redwing is much taller than a Bunch, which was also mounted angled downwards to give even more headroom. The late John Scott-Scott was able to provide the unique and original ignition connectors to finish off the build.

The remains of this E&M Special were discovered many years ago by the late Mike Patience. What made it so interesting and worthy of renovation was the very early chassis number, 1019, when they were still stamped onto brass plates and the original ignition tray and clips. Also seldom seen was the semicircular, factory fuel tank, with twin outlets and pipes for CW or ACW running. Now, how did that work? Although it looked a basket case, apart from two broken radius rods, everything else was able to be salvaged and another two Cressite tyres unearthed. M&E fitted both Cressite and Dunlop Fort tyres to their models, although the tyres are very different diameters.

Thanks to Retro Club members who have shared these rebuilds and renovations with us over the years.