In article <200108300104.AA257622326@141.com>, Laura Gharazeddine
>I am curious and looking forward to taking Nigel up to San
>Francisco for a long-ish weekend in November. I haven't been on
>that long a trip with him before (about 8 hours of driving)-and
>all alone! (Eeee!) I've only been as far as half way there-and
>felt totally battered at the end!
An eight hour drive in any car is too much for the average human being.
Long before you get to the end of it your reaction times will be shot,
you'll be feeling tired and groggy, and your chances of having an
accident will have increased dramatically. In a car like a Spit, with
no power steering, no cruise control, and none of the other modern
devices for making driving boringXXXXXX easier, the effect hits harder
and faster. Plan to break the journey - or plan to break the car!
>So, based on the performance, I made my decision. Mike-if you ever
>get out here, you've got to have a drive.
I'd love to; thank you. The chances of me getting to California seem
pretty slim at the moment, but one never knows...
>>What is more important, to my mind, is to preserve examples
>>cars as they came off the production line. The number of people
>>swapping standard gearboxes for OD gearboxes at the moment
>>me that in a decade or so, you and I'll have the only Spitfires
>>standard gearboxes left in the world!
>Well, Nigel's engine is a little too tweaked to be "as they came
>off the production line"... but it is the original engine. Of
>course there's the Weber and the oil cooler, but at least it's not
>some sort of engine switch. (Augh!)
These were not uncommon modifications carried out when the cars were
still being produced - and the good thing is that they are easily
reversed if you wanted to go back to a "concourse" car. Engines and
gearboxes are a different matter...
> When I looked at the Spitfire
>racing at Monterey, her engine didn't look that different from
>mine! (Of course, that was on the outside-who knows what's been
>done to it on the *inside* where no one can see!)
I'd rather have a rebored original engine than a stock engine from a
>With all the engine swapping and gear box swapping, someday Nigel
>and Carly might be two very rare beasties indeed!
I wonder if the Spitfire Database ought to start tracking which cars
have been modified (and how), and which cars are original?
>With the clutch and tranny-and a new spring on the throttle
>cable-(and the brake adjustment of a couple of weeks ago)-it feels
>like such a different car now! The pedals all feel stiffer, the
>gear shift tighter, the noises and vibrations not what I'm used
>to! It's like getting accustomed to a whole new car! (Ok, half a
>new car!) It needs a bit more aggressive driving style than I've
>been using on him for the last 6 months or so since he was
I'm very much looking forward to getting Carly's engine stripped out,
and the piston rings replaced. It will be very pleasant to drive her
like a sports car again!
>I wonder what will be next-because (altogether now!) "It *never*
>ends! There's *always* something!"
The thing that strikes me is that even those things that you think have
been "fixed" can still go wrong. I had the rear suspension done a few
months ago, which made a tremendous difference to the ride, and to the
position of the rear wheels. I've noticed over the past few weeks that
the driver's side rear wheel has started to lean in again at the top -
quite dramatically. I presume something needs tightening up, or a bush
replacing, but unfortunately my mechanic is on a fortnight's holiday at
the moment, and so I can't get him to look at it for another ten days or
so. :-( He put it in; he can fix what's wrong with it!
Michael Hargreave Mawson, author of "Eyewitness in the Crimea"
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