RESTORATION UPDATE - PK 2613 (Update No. 2)

(1928 Trojan 3 Door Tourer ex Joe Pidgeon)

Last year I was able to report that since collection from Common Wood Cottage in July 2007, the car had moved to Steeple Morden near Royston and a big leap forward had been made with restoration. The front scuttle, mudguards, running boards and side panels were taken to Morden Classics where after dismantling, stripping to bare metal and repair have been primed, painted and refitted to the punt.

At the Trojan Owners Club Annual General Meeting in April I was voted on to the committee as the Club Secretary. This has been quite an absorbing task but has also given me access to substantial amounts of free advice and helped me to acquire some of the missing parts needed for the restoration, including a mixture control lever and carburettor parts.

The problems with the front axle and the associated steering geometry I reported last year have finally been resolved. It had been assembled incorrectly. Not by Joe but by a workshop in West Wycombe. It was upside down and the hubs were fitted to the wrong ends. Dismantling and reassembly with the correct orientation miraculously solved the geometry problems and the steering column and steering wheel have now been installed.

When I investigated the original fuel tank, internal cleaning with a length of chain and an alkaline cleaning fluid produced large quantities of rust and revealed 11 leaks. Joe must have known this as he had acquired a second tank which when treated in a similar manner was found to be sound. This tank has been internally coated and fitted to the car; a new cap machined from solid aluminium bar has been made to fit. I have installed a keep chain to ensure that this cap remains with the car.

I have started to strip the engine to check for corrosion or other internal damage before installation in the car. An early Trojan has recently been found in a barn in Southern Ireland with a similar “PH” engine to that fitted in Joe’s car. When dismantled this was found to be full of a rust coloured oily sludge. (I was sent a set of digital pictures for encouragement). I hope that I am not in for a similar surprise.

Restoration of the gearbox, transmission and engine ancillaries has still to commence before rebuilding the rear bodywork, restoring the seats and weather equipment and refitting the electrical accessories and wiring so there is still plenty to do. I have however restored the carburettor with spares from the TOC stores and the spare wheel and distributor have been rebuilt by specialist firms.

The Trojan always displayed a large GB plate which Joe fitted when based at Castle Archdale NI. From here he visited the Republic of Ireland which at the time was a neutral country and not subject to rationing. When removed from the car it was so battered that it was beyond repair. Tippers Vintage Plates have however located an old stock item which looks identical. I am looking forward to fitting it when the rear body is complete.