They love their American cars in Scandinavia.
This is a typical Saturday night - a bit like the Kings Road runs in Chelsea - or used to be in my day. It was good to be in Karlskrona again and I met up with a couple of matelots from previous offshore trips - it's a very small world.
Back home the following week, I had a few cars to collect for the auction. In one particular batch of barn finds, three left-hand drive cars - two Sunbeam Alpines and an MG Midget - we had to remove the doors of the sheds to get the cars out.
Despite having stood for thirty years, all twelve tyres held air when pumped up. That made the job a lot easier than it might have been.
Fortunately, the weather was with us and remained fair for me to collect an early Volvo P1800 and a Morgan.
This Singer Le Mans was probably the star of the show - a pretty car in cracking condition. But I'm afraid to say that other than a chance encounter on the road or perhaps seeing them in action at Goodwood, any desire to own a production vintage or veteran car has long since gone. I drove The Great Collector's Bayliss-Thomas to the auction and whilst it went very well, the centre throttle and only rear wheel brakes were not ideal down the country lanes. Vehicles flew around corners in the middle of the road - most not even bothering to brake or steer away from a potential accident.
This 1924 Renault KJ1 was interesting because it had a dynastart on its diminutive 950cc engine; the rear of the cabin opened up, and the back seats folded down to easily accommodate livestock and whatnot to take to market.
Floating about the countryside collecting cars, I had time to think about the radiator on the new Special. Mr Holmes had kindly donated an old 6/80 example for me to experiment with. It was the work of a moment to remove the rusty side and bottom supports with a blowtorch, and offered up, though not so convenient, it was clearly the way to go as the Honda Civic radiator was likely to be too small. The sloping front subframe brackets will do the donkey work for the new setup.
Then I turned my attention to finding a solution to the misfire on the Hillman. Having rebuilt the distributor, overhauled the carburettor, and renewed the capacitor, the coil was all that was left. I had several coils (to none of which I can attach any history) and so strapped one to the original and gave it a whirl. It started and ran perfectly for a few minutes before the misfire returned - so no change. Despite pouring over the internet for information on coils, I could find no list which gave the modern equivalent of the Lucas Q12 - the manual's recommendation - with details of resistances expected. I picked out another coil and after taking readings of the primary and secondary windings (which flagged up a problem with my first 'new' coil) gave it another go.
Perfect! No misfire after a good high-speed run - narrowly avoiding inclusion in the next auction.