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Sunday, May 3, 2009

Kenny begins work on the car......

Ken Day, owner of Day Auto service in Great Valley, NY started working on the car after I ordered a bunch of parts from Delta Motorsports, and across the pond. Jeff Peterson was given full "power of attoney" in my absence to make all decisions on the car restoration. He has done this three times before, so he has plenty of experience and I trust his judgement.

Brake System:

Kenny started out releasing the brakes and overhauling the Brake system on the Jensen GT. He repaired the Emergency Brake and flushed the brake lines. He replaced the front brake rotors and rebuilt the calipers. He added new high performance disc pads from Delta Motorsports. On the rear brakes, he turned the drums and replaced the drum brakes, wheel cylinders and wheel bearings. Kenny found the master cylinder was leaking badly. Instead of rebuilding the original, I elected to replace the master cylinder with a brand new direct replacement...... a TR6 Master cylinder. Once completed the car was topped off with DOT 4 brake fluid and tested. The brakes were now complete.

Fuel System:

The fuel tank was lowered from the bottom of the car and sent out for cleaning. The fuel lines were flushed and replaced where needed. The older mechanical fuel pump was removed and replaced with a new SU electronic version. The fuel filter was replaced with one placed before the two stromberg carbs.


The 2 stromberg carbs were leaking badly. The seals were worn. The rebuild kits contain about 12 different gaskets and 4 replacement parts. This will usually get them running well, and since the car only has about 26,000 miles, this should be enough. The cost to rebuild a set of carbs is about 2 hours labor and the cost of the rebuild kits. This usually runs about $150.00. If this doesn't work, the carbs have to be sent out to a specialty shop which will promptly replace all the worn items..... valves, fuel metering needles, as well as any adjusting screws, and will rebuild the entire linkage. This costs about $500.00. Usually, unless the condition of the carbs is obvious, most people try the cheaper route first.

Cooling system:

The original water pump was leaking badly and making a little noise. In a Lotus, this is never a good thing and it a sign of bad things too come. I had Kenny remove the water pump and send it out for a complete rebuild. The new water pump design really improves the cooling efficiency in the lotus. My other Jensen also has the new style pump, and I have never had a problem.

The Radiator was not as easy. The car was missing a radiator. Most people would think this is an easy thing to replace. Well, not really, as there are only about 250 of these car shipped to the United States and it is a completely different radiator than the Jensen Healey. When attempting to equip the Jensen GT with a radiator, there are only two options.

1) Go to a specialty radiator shop like, and pay them to design and build a custom aluminum radiator.

2) Call rejen across the pond and talk to Alison. She and her husband own the place and completely restore all models from Jensen motors. They have stockpiles of NOS ( New Old Stock) parts for the GT. She just happened to have a Brand New Jensen GT radiator in stock sitting on the shelf. I bought the radiator from Rejen and it arrived about 3 weeks later. It was in perfect condition, but I wanted to modify it correctly so it would not overheat as easily. The local radiator changed the internal cores from " 2 Row" to "3 Row". This will greatly improve the cooling ability of the radiator. At the same time, I had the radiator shop add a drainage tap so I can drain the coolant easily. Now, I just twist a lever and the coolant pours out of the radiator without removing the radiator hose and spilling it all over the garage.

Hoses belts and other things.......

Kenny replaced the timing belt ( which is very critical), the alternator and air conditioning compressor belts as well as most of the other rubber hoses under the hood. This car needs a timing belt replaced every 8- 10,000 miles or so. Kenny removed the original brake hoses and replaced them with custom stainless steel brake lines. It is only good maintenance practice to replace the radiator hoses, vacuum hoses, heater hoses, and oil cooler hoses.

Next up is the engine and bodywork.....

1 comment:

  1. Hey, great blog. Nicely done. I'm now reading about Jensen's from the pro!