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I'm excited to finally have my site live and ready to share Betsy with the rest of the world!

before (when the car was original)

I have to point out that when I purchased the car in 2008, I had been "away from cars" for about 25 years.  The last time I tinkered with a car, was with my Mk1 and Mk2 Escorts back in 1992/1993 (yes, I had a Mk1 1300e [with webasto roof] and a Mk2 Escort with a 1750cc engine that I built for it [it went like st!nk]).  This meant that I was a little hesitant to work on the car in any great depth and whilst it was in pretty good condition, it did need some work doing to it.

 

For instance, the interior was in a pretty bad way, but was acceptable to use.  The body was in reasonably straight shape, the car had had a blow over within the past 5-7 years, so it "looked alright".  Mechanically, it was okay-ish....

 

I literally drove the car as-is for a couple of years.  Not needing to do anything major and a local old skool garage was happy to work on the car for the MOT each year.  There was one point where the brake master cylinder pretty much exploded and they had to get it rebuilt for me by a specialist, apart from that, as I say she was pretty good....that is, apart from the wiring gremlins!

 

The car would start first time, everytime.  It was just when you were driving along that she would have a problem.  For instance, if you braked too hard for a roundabout or a set of traffic lights, the car would cut out and would then refuse to start.  Literally doing nothing for 10 minutes, she would start again, no problem.  This caused great issues when taking the car out for a 40-60minute drive.  Most of that time was spent trying not to stop/slow down!  In the end I narrowed it down to the 1950s old and cracked wiring, it was shorting out all over the place.  then one day the enevatable happened, the dashboard had an Amp readout that meant both + and - wires were connected to the back - yep, the + sheared off and rested onto the bodywork (as the dash is metal and grounded), needless to say the fabric covered wiring caught light and went up in smoke, so did the roof lining!  Luckily, I did have a fire extinguisher to hand so the whole car didn't go up.

 

 

 

We then moved to the "West Country", where I tried to drive the car around every other weekend.  Due to the very high ride height, the cars handling was hilarious around the country lanes, but it always put a smile on my face.

 

These two photographcs "came with the car", they were original black and white photo prints (from the non-digital days) and looked to be authentic.  I'm not sure if they are of the same car or not, but they are at least a piece of history.  (The number plate now is non-transferable, so I guess the original number went a long time ago)

 

As I say, we moved to the "West Country" and then I started to get a bit more hands-on with the car.  I was working away a lot, mostly in Europe during the week, but also quite long stints in Austin, Texas, San Francisco, California and Dallas, Texas, so I only got to have the odd drive here and there, but I did have the odd fiddle around with the car.  Yes, that's a side-exit exhaust pipe...well, it was different.... you can also note the bubbles of rust starting to appear on the bottoms of the rear doors...

 

 

Then I got bored one Xmas to New Year and decided to strip the paint off the car, there were a few rust spots that needed sorting out, but overall, she was still pretty solid underneath those six (yes, 6!) layers of paint.....the car was even gold at some point in the past.

 

Then it was time for the car to go visit those nice people at Valley Gas....

 

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