9th October 1998

Over the last few days, I have been getting ready for the big day when the new head arrives. Terry at Triumph Tune suggested that lightening and polishing the rocker gear would allow the engine to rev more freely, and increase the top end power. Any thing for more top end! I did not realise that this would be such a time consuming task.

The rockers originally weighed just over 75 grams each, I have managed to get the weight down by over 15 grams to 58.75 grams each, and each one has been highly polished to increase the strength. I am now toying with the idea of doing away with the standard spacer springs, and using the Triumph Tune spacer set. this is supposed to cut down on the friction caused by the springs, and allow the rockers to move easier.

rear01.jpg (30K)     rear01.jpg (30K)

19th October 1998

For the last few weeks, there has been an annoying rattle coming from somewhere in the engine. After spending a couple of hours trying to identify the source, I discovered that the nut that holds the crankshaft pulley had completely come off. I guess that it is lying in a gutter somewhere! The problem is I do not know what damage it will have done to the engine, the noise appears to be the timing chain rattling in its housing. The next problem is, where that hell do I get another one from, and quickly. Off to the breakers yard tomorrow.

17th December 1998

At long last Moss London told me that the new head was ready. The promised 4 weeks has grown into 2 1/2 months. No apologies, no discount for the inconvenience... nothing... But who's bitter!

The head looks good. All the ports have been polished and the valve guides replaced. The new bonze guides will allow me to run it on unleaded petrol. The spec is quite impressive.:

  1. Reshaped Triumph Tune valves
  2. Larger inlet valves (1.475")
  3. New Valve springs
  4. Modified chamber design

Here are some pictures

head01.jpg (30K)     head02.jpg (30K)     head03.jpg (30K)     head04.jpg (30K)

26th December 1998

I eventually fitted the head. What a change. The ability of the engine to rev is incredible. Although I haven't yet put my foot down hard, one thing is evident, its quick!. It also seems to use less gas. All I need now is some good weather to put it through its paces. I suppose next year, I will have to upgrade the brakes.

18th February 1999

I have spent the past 2 months cleaning the car inside out. I have fitted new carpets and new panels in the rear of the car behind the seats. At the same time I upgraded the stereo. There was nothing wrong with the old one, but I couldn't hear it if I go above 50 mph. The new one has a separate amp, and powers 2 x 100 W woofers and tweeters, and 2 x 100 W Kenwood 3 way speakers. The amp produces 4 x 30 W. To limit the treble to the woofers I fitted 2 treble inhibitors cutting off the treble at 100 Hz. At full volume the bass is quite punchy.

The car has also been on a rolling road for the carbs to be tuned. If you live in the UK around London you must try Tony at Redline tuning. His number is 01753 655522. Prior to the tuning it registered 60 bhp. at the wheels. 2 days later, and after numerous jets were tried it now produces 85 bhp. at the wheels. I took it for a spin, and for the first time put the pedal to the floor. The acceleration in all gears including overdrive 4th is incredible. The acceleration at 80 mph is better than my wife's 1800 Escort Cabriolet. There is one problem however, and this is above 65mph the back of the car vibrates badly. Despite having all for wheels balanced on the car, the vibration is still there. I am a little concerned that a drive shaft UJ has worn out.

10th July 1999

It has been some time since I last updated this page, and a great deal has happened to the car.

Firstly new wheels, my father in-law, gave me a set of Wolfrace slot mags, they had been in his garden for years, and required 4 weeks of polishing to bring back the shine. They had originally been drilled to suit a Ford, so I had to get the holes slotted to suit the Triumph. A company in the midlands supplied wheel nuts and centre caps and my local ATS swapped over the tyres.

Check it out!

Wolfrace wheels Wolfrace wheels

The universal joints have been changed, so no more vibration at speed.

My thanks to Jon Wolfe of Jon Wolfe racing, who kindly pointed out that the oil cooler was upside down. This was the reason the car took a while to get oil pressure when first started. In the course of changing the oil cooler, my hand slipped and a screw driver went through the radiator core. OUCH. I managed to find a company locally who could re-core it at a fraction of the price of a new radiator. Heathrow Radiators, well worth a visit.

I am now talking to Jon about buying an engine from him. The spec is cool:

CRANK                 Ground, Stroked, Indexed, Tuftride Lead/Copper Bearings 010/010

CAMSHAFT        KENT TH3 (Large bearings) New Followers, Duplex timing set

BLOCK                 Bored, Rodded, Acid dipped, New Core Plugs

PISTONS            AE Hepolite +030

FLYWHEEL        Lightened, Balanced, Drilled for Escort clutch


My wife has sort of agreed, and I hope to have clinched the deal in the next couple of weeks.

Add on to that my new stage 3 head, and we should have a rocket. I am buying a set of uprated front disks shortly, they should be capable of stopping the car without giving it 5 minutes warning.

I have also found a company that can re-upholster the 6 year old Cobra bucket seats and fit a new soft top. This will I hope get sorted in the next month or so, before Autumn.

The one thing I have never done, is tided up the bulk head, the car has been 3 colours since new, and the bulkhead was all 3 colours. Yesterday, I stripped everything off, brake cylinders, clutch cylinder etc. and sprayed it. At last all one colour and very clean!

Under the hood