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Re: LBC article in NY Times

Subject: Re: LBC article in NY Times
Date: Sat, 08 Jun 2002 06:30:26 -0500
Cc: spridgets@autox.team.net
References: <008801c20e58$777f7d70$cf48fea9@FX3402> <3D012151.73166437@ix.netcom.com> FILETIME=[538842D0:01C20EDF]
type79@ix.netcom.com wrote:

> I read this, uh, "non-fiction" piece and it quickly became apparent that the
> premise of the article was to again describe British
> cars as unreliable.

I have just read this article and it will now be my pleasure to piss off the
I heard a similar story from a ex-Bugeye owner who was the uncle of the man that
painted our 68 Sprite. He told tales of intermittent electric's, leaking hoods 
headlamps falling out of the bonnet, bucket and all. He sold it and was glad to 
shed of it, but he was impressed with the appearance of our Sprite. Despite his
glowing accolades, I still pursued, now own and will one day drive MY bugeye
(frogeye in progress)
In the 5, almost 6 years that we have had the 68 Sprite, it has served us well. 
arriving home with it, (I drove it off the trailer, the PO said it wouldn't 
run) I
spent the first few days of ownership delving into the electric's, the turn 
didn't work. For those who don't know, on cars with flashers, the circuit is 
through the hazard switch. After rebuilding the switch, all was well, the car 
inspection and it was on the road legally. Along those years I have, rebuilt the
carbs, replaced a water pump, genny rebuild, and as of now, it is needing a 
pack replacement. No electrical problems, other than rebuilding the heater 
switch by
taking one that I got from a LBC wrecking yard that was in such poor shape they 
it to me. Disassembled both, took the best parts from each, reassembled using
lithium grease, and viola, heater!!
The car was voluntarily off the road for a year and a half while I had the car
painted and redid the interior. Shoddy American workmanship on the paint 
the car to need to be re-stripped and repainted by friends on the weekends. A 
accident delayed my re-installation of the interior.
About a year after getting the car, my company bought a Selco CNC Panel Saw from
Italy (one of the reason I despise anything mechanical from that country). The
gentleman that was responsible for getting it assembled and running was from
England. One evening when I knew he would be there late, I ran home, got in the
Sprite and took it back. I asked John to come outside, upon seeing the car he 
me a bit of background on them. According to John, these little cars fit the 
for a rich man's wife to have a car in the garage to pop into town for groceries
without bothering the hubby or chauffeur. He was surprised to see one in such 
shape (this is prior to my partial restoration) and still running. He maintained
that they were intended to be disposable.
In talking with a boy named Sue a couple of weeks ago about his 61 Bugeye he 
new here in 62, I somehow upset him with my theory. Sue doesn't upset easily, 
those that know him. It is my feeling and belief, that these cars were the Yugo 
it's era. They were built on a budget, with the emphasis on cost rather than
quality. But much like the showroom quality Yugo Cabriolet that was brought to 
attention not long ago, for $20,000, how many of you out there with restored
vehicles would part with your car for that?? And who on this list of Spridget 
would pay it, much less someone that doesn't know and love the quirks these cars
offer!! Like the much maligned Spitfidget, even our early cars need some 
tweaking in
some areas to make them more dependable, we are just lucky it isn't in the 
department!! Upgrade to a Datsun 5 speed, see Peter C. for better that original
shocks, we all know of something that these cars need to improve dependability. 
then, we all know better than to buy a Triumph (except for Robert Houston.)
But despite our cars being what they are, the Japanese Auto Industry, Nissan in
particular, owes BMC a HUGE debt of gratitude for doing it's initial research 
development for them. While in Comfort, Texas last weekend visiting Elizabeth 
Fisher Jones, I met a gentleman off the Roadster list by the name of Mark Tyler.
Mark is restoring an early Datsun pickup, on my initial glance under the 
bonnet, I
would have sworn that it was an A series with smoothcase tranny. The only 
difference was the starter was not as long as ours. The dist, genny, carbs,
everything else was identical in placement to ours. He had even used a British
intake and exhaust on his engine since he couldn't find the original. Fisher 
told me
that with a bit of fiddling, a British cam can be used in a Datsun engine!! 
That is
a touch to close, and those Roadster guys bad mouth our cars.................Yet
they name their websites things like oilleak................... They may as 
well be
Well, I don't usually write this much and my hands are tired. So get out your
lighters, matches, and used oil, and FLAME AWAY!!!!

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