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On 1/28/2020 at 6:03 PM, oldcar said:

To progress to the next stage it is really a quite simple, "have to"!

Of course there are those who would question the "need to" 

 

Everyone is driven to do something everyday and how boring life must be for those who are only driven to get out of bed to use the toilet. Aging or injury, when it happens you notice that the less you do, the less you can do. An old guy, more than several years older than you, says that when you stop you drop. You do what you need to do to accomplish the task at hand, but you don't have to do everything on your own and if someone is available to give you a hand, take it. The old boy was 98 last May, he still works a bit every day, and not because he needs money. 

 

Having the fire that drives you to do what others question is what keeps me going. and I imagine it does the same for you. 

 

 

 

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Hello Digger

"but you don't have to do everything on your own and if someone is available to give you a hand, take it."

It must be something about my deodorant, I have a huge circle of "aquaintenances" but very few "friends" who even if asked would find some excuse not to "get their hands dirty" ! 

Now I just accept that anything that need doing, I do myself. That way I can be reasonably certain that the job will be done. You get into a habit of not even asking for assistance.  If I need some help, it just means that I have to work out how best I can do it by myself. At least if something is "buggered up" I know who to blame!

Anyway, there is just not room for more than one person at a time in my "Garage/workshop".

 

Bernie j.

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Bernie,

 

Glad to see you back and great to hear that the Lagonda is good to go, once again.  I am looking forward to hearing about the work on the Singer re-build.  Your metalworking skills are incredible.  I have always enjoyed following progress on your many projects (Yes, somewhat of a lurker on the forum).

 

Safety Fast!

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Hello DrData

Thank you for your kind comments. Unlike many of you, I tend to confine myself to the one topic/project at a time.

I am a firm believer in the old adage. One at a time makes for good fishing. I believe in having just one project car and working on it until finished. 

Apart from anything else I am very conscious that we only have a set amount of time in this life. I would hate to think that I am leaving a shed full of unfinished "stuff" when I finally "Chuff off". You tend to see it all too often, that some old codger has shuffled off leaving it up to a grieving wife or family to sort it all out.

Worse still, that family having no interest in clearing out a garage full of assorted bits, simply take the line of least resistance and call in the "Rubbish Removers".

 

Bj.

Edited by oldcar (see edit history)
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11 hours ago, oldcar said:

Hello DrData

Thank you for your kind comments. Unlike many of you, I tend to confine myself to the one topic/project at a time.

I am a firm believer in the old adage. One at a time makes for good fishing. I believe in having just one project car and working on it until finished. 

Apart from anything else I am very conscious that we only have a set amount of time in this life. I would hate to think that I am leaving a shed full of unfinished "stuff" when I finally "Chuff off". You tend to see it all too often, that some old codger has shuffled off leaving it up to a grieving wife or family to sort it all out.

Worse still, that family having no interest in clearing out a garage full of assorted bits, simply take the line of least resistance and call in the "Rubbish Removers".

 

Bj.

Hi Bernie,

 

While I agree with you in principle, in practice I am having a little difficulty so I take and try to work on one piece of a project at a time.  Right now it is the Tbird engine rebuild that I screwed up.  I had to put it on the shelf to attend to some "Honey Do's" last year and then my wife was in an accident just before Thanksgiving so I was nurse and chauffeur as she recovers.  I think that regardless of the number of projects, you should at least have something that requires you to get up and think about.  Exercise the body and the mind!

 

Keep on, keepin' on Bernie!  You are an inspiration (at least to me 😁).

 

Frank

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Hello Frank

I trust that your "better half" is well on the way to a full recovery. I really do not deserve all the compliments. I am just doing what is necessary and that I cannot afford to be paying other people to do. Even more especially if I have to redo work I have paid someone else to do. Having said that  I actually enjoy working on my car. I have the greatest admiration for Tim Ashcroft, the designer of the Rapier Engine. 

What is the engine that you are working on and where are you having a problem. 

There is another old saying. A Problem shared is a problem solved.

 

Bj.

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Hey Bernie,

 

Thank you for the well wishes for my "better half".  She is getting better slowly.  Much too slowly for her liking!  lol

 

I am working on the 55 Tbird engine.  I had assembled it and put it in the frame and wanted to test fire it, but it seemed to turn over very slowly and something felt like it was binding when I turned it by hand.  So, I posted here in the technical section and on the HAMB forums where there are alot of guys that work on old Ford Y block  engines.  The consensus was that I needed to go back into it and check the clearances.  So, I took it back down piece by piece, checking as I went.  It looks like I over tightened the connecting rods to the crankshaft.  And I have a scratch on one of the journals.  I will talk to the machinist that did the work on the block and crank today and see what he says.  

 

Frank

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Hello Frank

Perhaps one of the most important things to do when assembling any engine, I have no knowledge or experience with any Ford engines but the principles are the same for any engine. Before I do anything else I check the Piston ring gap. Even before fitting the rings to the pistons. I check all the rings to be fitted to one piston usually three or four rings.Carefully take the ring and insert it into the top of the cylinder making sure that it is straight in the bore and measure the "Gap" with your feeler gauges. There are a number of sites that you can find on the internet that deal extensively on this subject. If the gap is too small you may well experience the drag that you are encountering. With too little gap there is a danger that you may find broken rings after some short time of running the engine. Checking the fit of big eng bearings is also critical. Again before assembling the engine trial fit each con-rod big end to the crankshaft journal it is to be fitted to. They should have sufficient clearance to permit the rod to rotate around the journal smoothly without any tight spots. 

This PRE-ASSEMBLY trial fitting is possibly more important thant the actual engine build. It certainly takes the drama out of engine building. It takes a little time but can save you all the strife you seem to be experiencing.

 

Good luck

 

Bj

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Thanks Bernie!  I have double checked my clearances and gaps and have started reassembly.  I am going slowly to make sure I have everything properly put together and torqued down.  Everything turns smoothly now, with just a bit of ring drag.  My rod to crank clearance is on the tight side of acceptable.  I would rather it be a little tight.

 

I did a really good job of installing the gaskets!  Cleaning them off all the surfaces so I can re-install new ones is a pain in the tail!

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Good Luck with the rest of the assembly, I have learnt that it is something that you cannot rush. There is a very old saying, If a job is worth doing, then it should be worth doing properly. Specially with hobby jobs, there is no reason to rush them or try to take short cuts.

If you do not finish them today, they will still be there tomorrow.

 

Bj.

Edited by oldcar (see edit history)
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Some of the USA based readers may have already heard of this association of Old Car Enthusiasts. The Information came to me from an old friend based on Long Island, NY, USA. I can only recommend joining at the first possible opportunity. Some of you may already be members.

 

Bernie j.

 

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What Is going on here?

I really should not be giving all my secrets away but it is probably too late now.

Now you have seen all my "state of the art" up to the minute tools and equipment.

The funny part is that I actually do get things done.

 

Bj.

 

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On 1/13/2020 at 3:54 PM, DrData said:

Bernie,

 

Welcome back and I am glad that things are getting sorted on your Lagonda Raper.    I am fascinated by the concept of the "pre-seIector" gearbox. I certainly hope you will continue to post about the Lagonda as well as your current (and future) restoration projects.  They are some of the best reads on any of the car forums that I belong to and I very much enjoy your wit and style.

 

Best regards,

 

Dr Data

1950 MG TD...currently undergoing engine rebuild...sigh...

 

 Could not have said it better.

 

  Ben

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On 1/28/2020 at 6:03 PM, oldcar said:

Hi Digger,

It is not really a question of "want to" ?

To progress to the next stage it is really a quite simple, "have to"!

Of course there are those who would question the "need to" 

But we could go on for ever finding excuses for "not doing anything".

It is probably, at least to some peoples thinking, very sad that some of us "have no say in it."

It is just that we are "driven to do something every day".

There are times when I wish that I too could simply shut the door, find a comfortable chair, 

and sit and read all day.

Of course and I hope very sincerely, "that this never happens to me",

there are those who "just sit ! "

Very often with people, like me, who have lived their "Three score years & ten "  

are just "waiting to die".

"What for ?".

I hope that this is not "too deep" for you.

Could it be just a case of "You have dug your hole, now lie in it"?

 

BACK TO WORK!

 

Oh yes! "Don't forget to smile!"

 

"You don't have to be mad, but it helps!"

 

Bernie j.

 

 Dang, you can be humorous!😄.

 I, too, thought I had lost you.  Finally awakened and came "down under" so to speak.

  Keep up the good work. And no, I do not know half of what I see on your car, but like what I see.

 

  Ben

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Hello Ben

Sadly it is a special type of humour, one that only very few privileged people can appreciate. I am glad that you are one of those people. I am afraid that I have very little or no say in what I do.

These very sad little orphan motor cars keep on finding me.

They say, Please help rescue me!  

How can I refuse?

Sometimes the rewards make it all worth while, Only sometimes!

 

Bj.

DSCN6682.thumb.jpg.821f26c50e52280bf2d4b48d502c6c19.jpg

 

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Just changing the subject for one moment I was going through some "old stuff" and came across this photograph. No prizes for guessing but photographs like this one remind me that I am wasting my time playing around with things like the Singer.

 

 

Bj.DSCN5296.thumb.jpg.2dd16fa1b3c3d1747c2df2d71831f3cf.jpg.496cb877fdd7c377fd2b7f8042ecbe92-1493912950.thumb.jpg.8b7ce9ef1ea1e2ab46e3dcfaf0eeff5b.jpg

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Moving right along, I now have finally filled up the remaining bit of vacant wall space in my little "dog kennel".

It may be just as well we have no more trips to Europe planed. Last but not least I have added the slightly travell damaged Cantaloup-les-Vignes Hillclimb. For anyone whose French is slightly rusty this celebrates the "First and so Oldest Motor Hillclimb in the World". The "Patron" for this event is Patrick Delage; Grandson of the founder of this famous Motor Car Manufacturer, Louis Délagé.

Bj.

 

.DSCN6683.thumb.jpg.1788a128d59cb070bf3629a7a15b325b.jpg

 

 

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Edited by oldcar (see edit history)
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Bernie,

 

Glad to see you are back working on the Singer and it looks like some great progress on the tub.  Your picture reminds me of the current state of the engine in my MG TD.  Having overcome some other obstacles, we are now trying to locate the odd sized compression ring that a prior owner used in the last rebuild.  The joys of old British cars.

 

I love your dog kennell...out does any "man cave"

 

Safety fast!

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The good thing about this Singer is that it has been literally "no where" The Speedo reads just over 6,600 miles from new! (1935)

I know that  I have talked about this before but everything I look at tends to confirm this. I will get around to taking the cylinder head off eventually. Meanwhile I have been told that looking through the spark plug holes with one of those special cameras, the "cross-hatching" on the cylinder walls is quite visible. After 85 years!  I will just have to find some one with one of those cameras so I can check this for myself. Meanwhile the body continues to "evolve"with more than half the side panels in place. I will need to buy another half sheet of aluminium. I probably did not plan cutting the various panels quite accurately enough. Oh well!

 

Bj

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Sorry, not very much happening right now. Suddenly, which is typical of  Melbourne weather, it has turned cold and very wet. As much of my work happens outside or with the garage door wide open there is not a lot I can do, come back next week and we will be back to some reasonable weather again, I hope.

Bj.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi,I just saw a 1930 Singer on Fl.Space Coast Craigsist for $6000. I offered him a trade for my chromed bumper 74 MGB ,I don't know if it's a good deal or not. Doesn't appear to have seats or rear window. Sorry,not sure how to send pictures.Greg.

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Our British friends will tell you that provided it is drivable and the interior / seats etc are clean and tidy you have an almost perfect "Oily-Rag" car. It also appears to have the wrong headlights but provided they work they are all you need. All that is required. is a rub over with an "oily rag" and you will have a very nice, ORIGINAL Singer Junior four door sedan. It also appears to have new tires including the spare. It is certainly far too good to start pulling apart.  All too often these cars are NEVER put back together again.  If you think that it is just a "restoration project". Please don't buy it!  If you do buy it, leave it exactly as it is today. As we say in the "Colonies", Don't bugger it up!

 

Bernie j.

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You can all go quietly off to sleep now. I will be away with the Lagonda Rapier for two weeks motoring in Tasmania. 

That is the Island State just south of Eastern Australia.  It is an overnight voyage in the Passenger/Car Ferry from Melbourne. 

Bj.

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20 hours ago, oldcar said:

You can all go quietly off to sleep now. I will be away with the Lagonda Rapier for two weeks motoring in Tasmania. 

That is the Island State just south of Eastern Australia.  It is an overnight voyage in the Passenger/Car Ferry from Melbourne. 

Bj.

 

 Dang, Bernie, you have ALL the fun. Envious.

 

  Ben

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hello Ben

No Problem! As mentioned above, we  have been away, firstly competing in the VSCC (Victoria, Australia) Alpine Rally. This year the three day road/navigation event was run in Tasmania. It could have just as well been called the "Dirt Road Rally". as around 75% of the time we were driving on gravel roads of varying quality. 

For those who do not know, Tasmania is the smallest Australian state, It is also our only "Island State" found across the Bass Straight to the south of Victoria, our home state.

Tasmania Is reached either by air or by an Overnight  Ferry. As we were taking the Lagonda Rapier this meant taking the ferry  From Melbourne to Devonport. 

You really need to look at the map of this part of the world. We decided to extend the trip to include  visiting two of my nephews who both live in Hobart, the principal city and Capital of Tasmania. One of the features of Tasmania is the number of "Gravel Roads. Again you really need to look at the map! Staying away for two weeks meant that the luggage space behind the seats was virtually "full to the top". I did not bother to make a note of the milage and the trip milage counter is not reliable so I cannot tell you how many miles we did but iit did mean re-filling the fuel tank every day, so most days we would have covered over two hundred miles. We had two minor problems, The water pump failed which meant the car ran most of the time at about 90 degrees C, but it never boiled. the other problem was that the Voltage Regulator was not doing its job which meant the we had to charge the battery over night, each night. 

Tasmania has some spectacular scenery with a number of lakes and extremely rocky mountains. which when combined with gravel roads makes a popular holiday escape. Fortunately for us, the world wide Virus epidemic meant that we were driving most of the time on deserted roads. It also meant that we slept almost every night in a different bed. You will need to look up Tasmania, Australia on Google. 

The over night, return sea voyage arrives back in Melbourne at 5.30am, so we drove home in the dark but as a conciliation there was not a great deal of traffic.

 

Thank you for your concern.

 

Bernie j.

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Carrying on from yesterday, I have now looked at the water pump problem, the two drive "prongs" had sheared off. Discussing this with the Rapier Register "Technical Advisor" Paul Nickalls and the "Spares Registra" Mike Pilgrim via email they were able to tell me that this was part of the original design intended to protect the Timing Gears is the case of the water pump freezing in extreme cold should the owner omit to add anti-freeze to the water. At the time when the cars were new (1934) "Anti-freeze" was still in its infancy. While this may, to the owners of other rare makes, be a serious problem, remember, there were less than 400 Lagonda Rapiers built!  Looking in the 22 pages of "New Spares" listed as available through the Register's Spares Scheme; about halfway down, on page 9, there it is "Water pump driving flange, (Bolts to front of dynamo gear)". UK Pounds 62.45. While this may, to some people, sound expensive, compared to the cost of having one made as a "one off" especially when I can have it on my work bench in a few days it is fantastic. After all this is for a car that was built in very limited numbers EIGHTY THREE Years ago! 

This and considering that there are just 169 members of the Rapier Register world wide, speaks volumes for the enthusiasm of the owners! AND just one in a multitude of reasons to be a member of the club dedicated to these fantastic little old cars.

Thankfully, there does not appear to be any damage to the timing gears. I now have a week or so to clean up all the road grim resulting from our two weeks driving on mainly gravel roads on the remote island of Tasmania. I expect to have the new replacement drive flange in a week or two.  

Fantastic!

 

Bernie j.

DSCN6691.thumb.jpg.a14da97003308b4707a6866e612251fa.jpg

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1703687565_KG1977.jpeg.650d8492993a02cb3ca8dfa4a432180c.jpeg941037969_KGJuly1977.jpeg.6a98fe966c8dcc3e4d077abfcbdd89e9.jpeg

 

Now This has nothing to do with a virus of any sort; but it is a slice of ancient history.

While going through some old copies of the Rapier Register "News" I came across these two interesting photographs of KG 5363 while still in England before coming to Australia in the late1970s. At that time it was owned by the late David Seath.

When I started on "my restoration" of the car in 1978, some dedicated enthusiasts complained bitterly that I was "destroying a "historic car".

Forty + years later I have owned the car for longer AND driven it more miles in its "current form" than any of the previous owners!IMG_2037.thumb.jpg.6d4dc47d24b756c2cd28051ca2b76312.jpg.

 

I do not feel the least bit guilty for what I have done with the car. It is seen here in a village in England during our 2014 visit. Apart from the absence of the (detachable) luggage rack and the "Equipe Australie" on the bonnet,  it looks very much the same today.

 

.

Edited by oldcar (see edit history)
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Bernie,

 

Glad to see you made it back safe and more or less sound from your jaunt to Tasmania.  Your restoration of the Rapier looks fantastic, I only wish my old TD looked as good.

 

A lot of the MG folk are very intent on getting T-series and later cars restored back to "new" condition...putting wire wheels on a TD is considered a venial sin.  While I do appreciate that POV, I  just really enjoy driving my TD and do not fret over the occassional stone chip.  Also, I am not above using non-original replacements for things like water pumps, master cylinders, etc. 

 

Stay safe.  We are still in shelter-in-place mode in Northern California.  Our little town is eerily quiet.

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Thank you DrData

Thank goodness we are still allowed to go out into our garage and can find plenty to keep us amused.

I have just in the last couple of days  been plagued by a person with nothing better to do but pretend that he wanted to buy the Singer. After two or three days of sending photographs and detailed information. I very politely gave up and told him to "go away".

 

Bj.

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With the "Lock-down" taking effect here in Australia, I now have another "Time-waster" with nothing better to entertain himself asking that I send precise details and copious numbers of photographs of the Singer under the pretence that he "may" like to buy it. 

Just how he intends to do this when we are all prohibited from leaving our homes I have yet to discover.

 

Bj.

 

 

Please make a note :- Here is a new way to help fill in your days.   Starting from the top, reply to all the adverts in the various "old car" magazines offering exotic cars for sale. It will help fill in the hours of boredom. Remember to ask for lots of  fine detail photographs!  Also remember to include in your request for some of underneath the car, front and rear. Don't forget to ask for lots of the interior, Dash, instruments, seats, "top" both in the up and folded positions. A close up of the individual tire treads is a good one too.  Better still, some of the wheel centres, right and left sides, front and rear, and do not forget the spare wheel and its mounting. 

 

Bj.

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One of my favorites is whenever I get a call from "Bruce from Microsoft" who tells me my computer has a problem.  I like to tell him that I know that he is not who he says he is, since I have no Microsoft products,  I then ask him how he can look himself in the mirros in the morning, knowing his job is to scam people.  About that time they hang up and I do not receive a call for several months. 

 

I tend to look at old cars on various websites, but that's as far as it goes until I win the lottery. I would never think to hassle others knowing that "she who must be obeyed"  would never abide with springing the funds from the retirement account for an XK 140.

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Interesting old  cars need not be either exotic or expensive. Attached is a photograph of a humble 1936 Morris 8/40 that passed through my hands some years ago. A fraction of the cost of the Jaguar and possibly just as much fun. 

Bj.

2008966785_MowogSpecial.jpeg.492b941d14b371f91fd4e755244b11fa.jpeg

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I know that we all have different values. To me the $$$$$ value is not necessarily the same as the enjoyment value or even the pride of ownership.

Having owned several Jaguars I really do not want to own another. To me the greatest amount of satisfaction across a broad spectrum of ideas can probably come from restoring and enjoying all the satisfaction in actually driving an early 1920 or late teens light car.  This may only have a maximum speed of something like 45 to 50 mph but at that speed "everything is happening". This I know is probably beyond the imagination of more than 90% of the people reading this. Believe me it is your loss......... 

As this "thread" is supposed to be all about Singers lets go back to the start.1224014467_1929SingerJunior_3.thumb.jpg.df942e97521a606b11a9cc549b2557c6.jpg

 

With only about 850 cc and two (rear) wheel brakes only,  this little charmer may have been capable of almost 50mph on a good day but at that speed it offered  all the thrill and excitement of a Brand new Jaguar at more than three times that speed. But speed really has nothing to do with the basic fun that is what "Old-cars" are all about! 

 

Body profile817.jpg

 

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Bernie j.

Edited by oldcar (see edit history)
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I know that we all have different values. To me the $$$$$ value is not necessarily the same as the enjoyment value or even the pride of ownership. Having owned several Jaguars I really do not want to own another. To me the greatest amount of satisfaction across a broad spectrum of ideas can probably come from restoring and enjoying all the satisfaction in actually driving an early 1920 or late teens light car.  This may only have a maximum speed of something like 45 to 50 mph but at that speed "everything is happening". This I know is probably beyond the imagination of more than 90% of the people reading this. Believe me it is your loss.........

 

Bernie j.

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Now some news about that other Singer.

Despite only owning it for little more than a matter of weeks, it will shortly be on its way to a new owner. Yes, it is the 1935 Singer 11 hp that I am talking about. After two weeks touring in Tasmania, the Island just south of south eastern mainland Australia, (Perhaps you can find a look at a Map of Australia.) I had decided that I really did not need a project the potential size of the Singer one. For the time being I will have sufficient work to keep me occupied. While we were away the Rapier's water pump drive failed and I am now waiting for a new drive flange to come from the Rapier Register, Spares; England. Once it is back together the Rapier will require a thorough cleaning and a Polish. Then when the Singer is finally gone,  the Rapier it can go back into its garage.

 

Bj.

Edited by oldcar (see edit history)
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Oh dear! it seems as though I have shocked you all. 

It must be something to do with growing old. It is all very frustrating for me. Once the Singer is gone, I will be able to sort out  my garage again. 

One problem is that given the current state of the world, it is difficult to make any positive plans, let alone carry them out! 

I am sure that I am not the only one with these problems. I suppose we will all eventually become used to living in "isolation". I do hope that all that "look in" to this thread are keeping well and avoiding the dreaded virus.

 

Bernie j.

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