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Thread: Austin-Healey’s and the Austin Healey Car Club of NZ and Others

  1. #881
    World Champion Roger Dowding's Avatar
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    A125 Jensen 541

    " The Jensen 541 is an automobile which was produced by Jensen Motors from 1954 to 1959. It was first exhibited at the London Motor Show in October 1953,[4] and production started in 1954.

    The 541 used fibreglass bodywork mounted on a steel chassis and was fitted with a straight-six engine, three SU carburettor version of the 4-litre Austin engine and four speed transmission with optional Laycock de Normanville overdrive.

    The body consisted of three major mouldings and the entire front was rear hinged and could be raised for engine access. The doors were aluminium. Suspension was independent at the front using coil springs with a Panhard rod located rigid axle and leaf springs at the rear. A choice of wire spoked or steel disc wheels with centre lock fitting was offered.[3] At first the car had servo assisted 11 in (279 mm) drum brakes but from 1956, the newly introduced 541 Deluxe version featured Dunlop disc brakes both front and rear—the first British four seater thus equipped.

    It was also a luxurious car with the well equipped interior featuring leather seats as standard. The individual seats in front separated by a high transmission tunnel and the rear seats had a small centre armrest and could also be tilted forwards to increase luggage space. Standard colours (1955) were black, ivory, imperial crimson, moonbeam grey, Boticelli blue, deep green and Tampico beige.[3]

    By employing lightweight materials, Jensen managed to make the car significantly lighter than their contemporary Interceptor model, with a dry weight of 1,220 kg (2,690 lb) as against the older design's 1,370 kg (3,020 lb).[4] Performance benefitted.

    In 1957 the 541 R was introduced, and in 1960 the 541 S arrived with wider bodywork and revised grill styling. Production of the Jensen 541 ended in 1959 and the 541 S early 1963 when the range was replaced by the C-V8. "

    When the Austin Healey Car Club ran our Hill Climb at Otaua in the 1980's a coupleof Jensens turned up to spectate. One was owned by a Mate of Reg Whittaker who was the " Man on the Ground " in Otaua, being a Waiuku Boy born and bred, and a local schoolteacher,was living in Bothwell Park Road which is the next road over from Maioro Rd.
    As has been mentioned Reg organised the " toilet " for the day, not a portaloo, but a genuine " Longdrop " .. don't think OSH would permit such things today.

    Those Jensens ;.

    Name:  AHCCNZ Otaua Hill Climb 1985 - 88 #27 Jensens CCI04122015_0003 (780x515) (2).jpg
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    The CV8

    Name:  AHCCNZ Otaua Hill Climb 1985 - 88 #28 Jensen CV8 CCI04122015_0002.jpg
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    The Longdrop by Reg of Waiuku - R.O.W - known as that and it was his initials to Reginald Orton Whittaker.
    Chris Watson in his TR5 races past.

    Name:  AHCCNZ Otaua Hill Climb 1985 - 88 #34 TR5, Chris Watson !! v2, CCI05122015_0003 (2).jpg
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    As an aside ; A group of Healeyites all past and some present members of the Austin Healey Car Club of New Zealand Inc - were at Manfield for the Classic Races last weekend.

    This was sent to me by BMC BOY

    Name:  AHCCNZ events #1001 The lads at Manfield 2019 (2).jpg
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    Left to right;
    BMC BOY Ross, Standing ; Chris White [ former racer ] Reg of Waiuku, Frank Karl AH 3000 and F5000 Racer, Barry Moon former Ford Escort and Austin Healey Racer. - drinking Orange Juice too !!.

    Ross - Thanks for the photo. Great to see some Old mates.. Think I am one of the oldest though, at 72, Chris is 70, You are way younger, not sure about Frank and Reg, Barry about my age !! If he is not my apologies.
    No doubt You and Barry would have caught up with John McKechnie and others. !!
    Last edited by Roger Dowding; 12-08-2019 at 12:41 AM.

  2. #882
    World Champion Roger Dowding's Avatar
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    Sports Car World an other Magazines

    The Austin Healey connection - the SCW magazine on the right - has a Road Test of an early AH 3000 - the test is in 1961 of a car owned by a Cambodian Diplomat - apparently there were no AH 3000's in Australia at the time.
    Milan Fistonic posted the Magazine Cover many months ago on this thread.
    There are about a dozen 1961 - 64 SCW's .. The writings are very old fashioned and the SCW help pages on tuning and modifying cars is interesting - the 1961 version of Google or other web - surfing .. Write a letter wait a couple of months for a reply in the Magazine,
    The New Zealand correspondent for SCW was a Grant Howard who had a column every month - they too are worth a read. - could go on the Dunedin thread - for South Island events, or Pukekohe - for the Northern Races.

    The Road test and another by an American Magazine " Sports car Illustrated will follow soon, once ;
    1, I get my Camera back
    2, Am home to use my scanner.
    It is complicated, I am in Auckland very briefly,[ so can't collect those magazines ERC ]
    Camera at Te Poi,
    and
    Scanner at Omokoroa.

    The TRS connection the Magazines came from BMC BOY - in the box that they are lying in.

    Name:  Magazines #61 SCW and others R Cammick (640x376) (2).jpg
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  3. #883
    World Champion Roger Dowding's Avatar
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    Sprite wins Hillclimb.

    On the thread about a set of photos on the 1965 Hillclimb at Station Road, Fordell, was this comment by " 225sloper " and a series of photos ;
    " Found these photos in a old Photo News dated 1965 of the Wanganui Car Club at one of their hillclimbs. . . . .Bruce Lester in his Healey Sprite who won the event with a 46.5 sec run. ".

    The Sprite ;

    Name:  AH Sprite #101 1965 Hillclimb Wanganui Bruce Lester W Photo News 225sloper .jpg
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    Name:  AH Sprite #102 1965 Hillclimb Wanganui Bruce Lester W Photo News 225sloper .jpg
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    Wanganui Photo News archives had the photos - Hillclimb event not a Trial - as noted in the comments on the photos.

    The Registration Plate " CF1100 " is not current but may have been requested as the Sprite was probably an early 1098cc Mark 11 ..
    The Lester family were / are a well known Motorsport Family in the Manuwatu / Taranaki area. Presume Bruce is part of the family, another competitor was his brother John in a Mini.

    The Mini .. thanks again for the post .. 225sloper..

    Name:  Cars #926 John Lester Mini Wanganui Hillclimb 1965 WPN 225sloper .jpg
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    Last edited by Roger Dowding; 12-09-2019 at 06:29 AM. Reason: correction bold *** and notes ### 47 ..

  4. #884
    World Champion Roger Dowding's Avatar
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    281,281 .. love sequences .. the number of view as at now 6;10 on 8th December 2019..

    and a picture A-H of course ..

    Name:  AH 3000 #194 Bill Bolton racer Xmas card 1983 CCI01102019_0018 (800x396).jpg
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    The car is /was a Ruddspeed and I am hoping for more information for a story on it - Yes it is in the USA .. but all part of ;
    " Healey-istory "

    Car was owned by a great American friend - Bill Bolton, from Corvallis Oregon ..

  5. #885
    Thanks for that photo, Roger...



    It really puts the mockers (sp?) on anyone who tries to tell us that the C-series is derived from the truck engine, and it really emphasises the size and apparent weight differences.

    Gauging what you can from the picture, it must be about four inches longer in the block and a couple of inches higher. Both are endowed with the heavy lower-block skirting, and it's obvious that the camshafts are on different sides. Didn't we establish that the C-series was a design from the Morris drawing rooms?

  6. #886
    World Champion Roger Dowding's Avatar
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    The " A " .. " B ".. and " C " of BMC engines..

    Ray Bell, your comment.

    " Didn't we establish that the C-series was a design from the Morris drawing rooms? "

    Got my hands smacked [ not on TRS I might add ] for saying that the Austin A40 Devon and Somerset engine was the first version of the "B " series, I still believe the concept was, even if the block is not the same.

    so keeping away from that.

    However you are probably right.

    I understand Austin did and A and B series, Morris the C. Austin had the big four Morris had a Wolseley Six, Riley had stopped the big-ish 4s..

    An " A ".

    Name:  My Cars #82 1965 Sprite the engine 1, 1974 CCI11102016_0007 (767x800).jpg
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    and A " C " ...

    Name:  AHCCNZ events #149 1980 Rotorua Rally Ross Cammicks 3000 the engine CCI19052016 (768x800).jpg
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    Sorry haven't got a " B " ..

    but do have a Truck engine well 2/3rds of one the AH 100 2660 cc which precedes the A B and C engines..

    Name:  AHCCNZ events #58 1989 Masterton Rally  Engines 100 4 2, CCI16032016_0002 (800x547).jpg
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    Last edited by Roger Dowding; 12-09-2019 at 06:12 AM. Reason: A C and pre B ####47

  7. #887
    I don't know what the differences in overall specs were between the A40 and B-series, but the B-series was a way more robust engine which probably 'learned' from the mistakes of the A40 unit...

    There's no doubt that BMC (or the ADO) didn't really plan for the B-series to go as big as it did. Nor the A-series, for that matter, which finished up larger than the A40 unit anyway. Siamesed bores became the norm, as you will recall.

    The A40 had a bore of 65.5mm and an 89mm stroke, the first of the B-series had the same, then went to a 73.025mm bore and the stroke was the same as the A40. That's 8mm less metal between the bores if they were on the same cylinder spacing. But they weren't but I don't know how much the castings grew. A note on Wikipedia says they were both longer and wider, and the head was too.

    I don't see any connection between the Wolseley six and the later C-series. It was probably a 'work in progress' at the time of the merger.

  8. #888
    World Champion Roger Dowding's Avatar
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    Thanks for " your inputs " Ray Bell,as Ken H says.

    I need to do some more looking as there was a 6 cylinder engine of around 2.4 litres at one stage was used in Australia [ used in the Freeways and maybe other vehicles ], but I don't know its origins at the moment.
    The Big Wolseleys 6/80's and Rileys RM's of the early 50;s became a different style of car by mid 50's with the Riley Pathfinder and the Wolseley 6/90 - pre the " Farina " styled era, by which time it was the " C " series motor, 2639 cc and 2912 cc.

    Have some work to do.

    Cheers

    Roger D

  9. #889
    Quote Originally Posted by Roger Dowding View Post
    Thanks for " your inputs " Ray Bell,as Ken H says.

    I need to do some more looking as there was a 6 cylinder engine of around 2.4 litres at one stage was used in Australia [ used in the Freeways and maybe other vehicles ], but I don't know its origins at the moment.
    The Big Wolseleys 6/80's and Rileys RM's of the early 50;s became a different style of car by mid 50's with the Riley Pathfinder and the Wolseley 6/90 - pre the " Farina " styled era, by which time it was the " C " series motor, 2639 cc and 2912 cc.

    Have some work to do.

    Cheers

    Roger D
    Roger, the Wolseley 6/80 motor was a single OHC design by Hispano/Suiza they had very large diameter valve stems with an adjustable platform on top of valve, no bucket's or rocker's, where very hard on valves, just about everything metric like post war morris engines

  10. #890
    World Champion Roger Dowding's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kevin Hirst View Post
    Roger, the Wolseley 6/80 motor was a single OHC design by Hispano/Suiza they had very large diameter valve stems with an adjustable platform on top of valve, no bucket's or rocker's, where very hard on valves, just about everything metric like post war morris engines
    Thanks Kevin,
    and today I saw a photo of the Riley Two Point Six - which had the original version of the " C " series the 2639 cc with the restricted manifold that made the 100 Six so wheezy.

    That Wolseley engine is interesting, didn't they make them quite small as well, around 1500 cc for some of their smaller cars ?

  11. #891
    Roger, the 2.4-litre engine was a B-series with two extra cylinders...

    Everything was the same, pistons, rods from the 1622 engine, porting and cylinder block construction. The oil pump was bigger and it became the salvation of the MG A twin-cam which needed a better oil pump.

  12. #892
    Quote Originally Posted by Roger Dowding View Post
    Thanks Kevin,
    and today I saw a photo of the Riley Two Point Six - which had the original version of the " C " series the 2639 cc with the restricted manifold that made the 100 Six so wheezy.

    That Wolseley engine is interesting, didn't they make them quite small as well, around 1500 cc for some of their smaller cars ?
    Did not know of any smaller engine of the same type as the 6/80, but could be, loved the car but let down by the engine, would like to find one today in restorable condition, very smooth motor when in good nick

  13. #893
    Wolseley engines post-war would have been mostly carry-ons from before the war.

    They had a model called the 18-85 which was very popular, it was also SOHC at 2312cc.

    The 6/80 had the 2215cc engine described above and the 4/50 had a 3-cylinder version of that.

    Phasing these out were the 4/44 (1250cc XPAW version of the MG XPAG engine) and the 6/90 with the C-series.

    Strangely enough, though the Riley 'Two Point Six' looked so much like the Wolseley and had the same mechanicals, a lot of body panels were different and they had 16" wheels in lieu of the Wolseley's 15". Check pictures and you'll see the difference in the shape around the wheel arches.

  14. #894
    And if you find it relevant, I always thought a 4/50 with a grey Holden engine would make a neat car...

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