My 74 - year old mistress is 75 next year!

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Captain Bobo
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My 74 - year old mistress is 75 next year!

Post by Captain Bobo » Fri Dec 09, 2011 4:53 pm

Hi everyone, allow me to introduce you to my 1937 Daimler 15 Mulliner Sports Saloon (family nickname "Daphne"). She's the oldest of my small collection of 3 classic cars that I have as running restorations now that I'm retired.

Very advanced technology for her years. The engine is a straight 6, 2166cc, driving a fluid flywheel (yes, a fluid flywheel) into a 4 speed Wilson preselector gearbox. The brakes are a very advanced mechanical Girling system that Daimler used in 1937 to replace the hydraulic systems used on this model in previous years.

Note the headlights, one pair for main beam, the other for dipped beam. Running at night is tough because it's a dynamo, so revs need to be kept up to prevent too much battery drain. In any case, the purpose of headlights in those days was more so that others can see you rather than helping you see in the dark, so I try to avoid driving in the dark if I can.

She sports a (working) sunshine roof and, one of my favourite features for hot summer days, a windscreen that winds open (hinged at the top) so that I can get the flies in my teeth if I want.

I've resisted the urge to fit flashing indicators. I use the trafficators and hand signals. Youngsters today don't seem to know about hand signals: the puzzled look on their faces seems to say "what's that old fart gesticulating about?" but at least it gets the attention of other drivers!

The tyres are 5.50 x 17 inches cross ply: fairly easily available still - several companies still manufacturing (but not cheap).

Spare parts, although not common, are available if I'm persistent. I've got a spare cylinder head and a spare gearbox. I've also just managed to get hold of a rare Lucas RJF20 regulator / cutout unit.

Planning a big family party in April to celebrate her 50 years on the road!

So, if you're stuck behind me as I drive around the coutry lanes in cambridgeshire, give me a friendly wave after you've overtaken me.

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Best wishes, Dave B
Dave Bennett
1998 Rover 820 Sterling
1937 Daimler 15 Mulliner Sports Saloon
1969 Daimler V8 250 (Mark 2 Jaguar body)
2005 Volvo S80 D5 SE Lux

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CHR15E
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Post by CHR15E » Fri Dec 09, 2011 5:37 pm

That's looking very well for it's age indeed.

Have you had it long?
Chris
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Richard Moss
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Post by Richard Moss » Fri Dec 09, 2011 7:23 pm

A lovely piece of motoring history. You'll have a few things in common with John Turner (47p2) who has a lovely Rover P2 - dating from 1947, surprise, surprise!
Out in the desert with a 1998 Grand Cherokee V8 and 1996 Grand Cherokee 4L. Back home: 1969 MGC GT

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whitelion58
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Post by whitelion58 » Fri Dec 09, 2011 7:45 pm

That is a lovely, quality motor. Nothing like the feel and smell of a proper old interior and wafting along the lanes on a summers day.

Here is a short clip of our much loved vintage transport

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L5Fmgg9gvGw

We have had this over 20 years now - but it was modified with flashing indicators back in 1953! I also fitted radial tyres which did improve the already good handling quite significantly. I do miss the howl of the cross-plys when pressing on through the bends!

Anyway, enjoy the Daimler for many years to come.

Cheers
Tim
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Manalishi
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Post by Manalishi » Sat Dec 10, 2011 7:44 pm

Absolutely lovely car! I'm a bit of a vintage nutter myself with two oldies in the family. As you say most parts are still available! Fascinating!
Henrik
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scooters
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Re: My 74 - year old mistress is 75 next year!

Post by scooters » Fri Feb 17, 2012 9:25 am

that is a wonderful car - I'd love to tackle something pre war but lack the storage and workshop at the moment (not to mention money, young family, work etc)

I absolutely understand your point about hand signals.I had a '53 Moggy with trafficators - I used to use hand signals as well as the trafficators - I was always surprised that it was young 'ladies' in hatchbacks who would usually be the most aggressive.

Do they still teach hand signals in the theory exam?
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Captain Bobo
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Re: My 74 - year old mistress is 75 next year!

Post by Captain Bobo » Fri Feb 17, 2012 12:08 pm

Mt daughter & my son took their driving tests within the last 10 years. Neither the theory nor the driving test had any mention of hand signals. I remember telling them about the fact that incorrect or inappropriate use of hand signals would constitute a failure in my driving test 45 years ago!

I'm still getting the rather puzzled looks from young motorists. The "older" motorists seem to know what's going on!

Best wishes,

Dave B
Dave Bennett
1998 Rover 820 Sterling
1937 Daimler 15 Mulliner Sports Saloon
1969 Daimler V8 250 (Mark 2 Jaguar body)
2005 Volvo S80 D5 SE Lux

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thamestyres
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Re: My 74 - year old mistress is 75 next year!

Post by thamestyres » Thu Mar 01, 2012 1:42 pm

so the party is at yours then captain :lol: april the first then :lol: the only hand signals they learn nowadays are telling you where to go, rather than where they are going :lol: nice looking daimler though.. regards ricky
Rover Sterling KV6 V.reg 4 tailpipes and rs5 wheels
home of the "Mad Maestro"
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Captain Bobo
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Re: My 74 - year old mistress is 75 next year!

Post by Captain Bobo » Fri Nov 28, 2014 9:21 pm

This summer I had to rebuild the door cards and re-carpet the interior (76 years of use tends to wear things out a bit!).Here are the results which I personally find quite pleasing.

Also blew the head gasket. Try finding a head gasket for a 1937 Daimler! Found a source and bought 2 (just in case).

Image

Best wishes, Dave B
Dave Bennett
1998 Rover 820 Sterling
1937 Daimler 15 Mulliner Sports Saloon
1969 Daimler V8 250 (Mark 2 Jaguar body)
2005 Volvo S80 D5 SE Lux

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TDHFastback
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Re: My 74 - year old mistress is 75 next year!

Post by TDHFastback » Fri Nov 28, 2014 9:45 pm

Ahh your on the right forum to talk about head gaskets :lol: :lol:

Beautiful car and interior

Kate :D
D reg Rover 820Si Saloon. No space for a a saloon in this rootin tootin town
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Richard Moss
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Re: My 74 - year old mistress is 75 next year!

Post by Richard Moss » Sat Nov 29, 2014 10:13 am

I love the fact that older vehicles like this can be kept up together using traditional skills and materials. Class on wheels.
Out in the desert with a 1998 Grand Cherokee V8 and 1996 Grand Cherokee 4L. Back home: 1969 MGC GT

Captain Bobo
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Re: My 74 - year old mistress is 75 next year!

Post by Captain Bobo » Sun Dec 14, 2014 8:33 pm

Oh dear! I was driving the Daimler 15 recently (with the driver’s window open) to celebrate passing her MOT with flying colours, in the local country lanes. A large truck was travelling at high speed in the opposite direction.

The “pressure wave” created by the truck blew in through the open window and forced the front of the sunshine roof out of its slider mechanism. The front end of the sunshine roof lifted, but the rear end was under the main car roof. Travelling at 35 mph, my speed was fast enough to catch under the front of the raised roof which acted as a sail.

Consequence? One sunshine roof bent back on itself with broken wooden frame struts and bent metal side frame, plus damage to the runners in the hole in the roof.

I managed to strip it all down, so I now have a Daimler 15 with a 1 metre by 1.5 metre rectangular hole in the roof!

Parts have been found and ordered, and repairs are under way; in the interim I have screwed some mdf in place of the sliding roof.

The photo below shows what I discovered as I stripped down the sliding roof. The bottom left of the picture shows one of the rear sliders which should be in line with the side piece. To the right of the slider is the metal side frame which should be straight! The entire rear end of the roof needs replacing: the old wood has partially disintegrated with the damage.

Image

Best wishes, Dave B
Dave Bennett
1998 Rover 820 Sterling
1937 Daimler 15 Mulliner Sports Saloon
1969 Daimler V8 250 (Mark 2 Jaguar body)
2005 Volvo S80 D5 SE Lux

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SJG
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Re: My 74 - year old mistress is 75 next year!

Post by SJG » Sun Dec 14, 2014 8:45 pm

Ouch, will you be able to sort it out easily?
Rover Vitesse Coupe - 1997

Captain Bobo
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Re: My 74 - year old mistress is 75 next year!

Post by Captain Bobo » Fri Dec 19, 2014 3:51 pm

Sort it out? Yes! Easily? No!

You can see from the pics that the sunroof is out of the car (the passing truck had already done most of the work for me!). Fixing the sunroof itself isn't too bad: I was going to replace the headlining anyway so I will start with the new headlining on the sunroof once I've fully rebuilt it.

The real problem lies with getting the sunroof back into the car. I've had to remove the rear half of the roof (it's ok, it's a screw-on section) which revealed a plethora of other small jobs that need doing: the membrane to prevent water ingress, the drainage channels that lead to lead pipes (yes lead pipes!) that run through the car framework and discharge into the rear wheel arch, that sort of thing.

Having sorted that out the real challenge is getting the thing back into the car. There is a gripper arm across the front of the sun roof that activates a "pincer" at each side when the lock handle is rotated, these pincers lock onto slide rails each side of the sunroof. Because the sunroof is curved to follow the curvature of the roof, the arm is wider than the gap between the rails. Having spoken to two people who have restored similar Daimler 15's, the answer appears to be that I have to remove the rails, clamp the sun roof onto the rails correctly aligned, and then screw the rails (6 screws each side) back onto the wooden frame with the sun roof in situ. Sounds easy until you see the tiny amount of workspace between the rails and the roof edge!

I will need a couple of warm dry days in the spring to attempt the re-installation. In the meantime the reconstruction of the sunroof is going very well.

Best wishes, Dave B
Dave Bennett
1998 Rover 820 Sterling
1937 Daimler 15 Mulliner Sports Saloon
1969 Daimler V8 250 (Mark 2 Jaguar body)
2005 Volvo S80 D5 SE Lux

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Richard Moss
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Re: My 74 - year old mistress is 75 next year!

Post by Richard Moss » Fri Dec 19, 2014 4:56 pm

Sounds like you need plumbing and sail making skills as well as woodwork and metal work :)
Out in the desert with a 1998 Grand Cherokee V8 and 1996 Grand Cherokee 4L. Back home: 1969 MGC GT

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