My Dad bought TC 3841 in 1954 from someone, whom, I assume, maybe mistakenly, purchased the car in England after the war and sent it to California sometime after October '47. Dad commuted to his job in Santa Monica, Calif. (about a half mile each direction) for three or four years until we moved to Switzerland in '58. The car was then put into storage, tires removed and up on jacks. My Dad remained in Europe for the next 26 years and TC3841 remained high and dry in a warehouse in LA.
In 1984, Dad moved back to Washington State and had the car shipped up from California. He decided to have the car completely restored and engaged a Mr. Ron Thompson to do the work. The first photos are of the car when Mr.Thompson received it and prepared the car for restoration. Dad was moved back to Europe in '85 for two more years and able to buy a variety of parts in England for the rebuild. He retired in '87 and moved back to Washington. The project was completed in 1988. It is spectacular! See photos. I have never met Mr. Thompson, although I have tried to find him (any tips on this would be appreciated). He and my father did extensive research on the TCs coming out of Abingdon at the time TC 3841 was built (October 16th,1947…thank you T-types.org) and endeavored to rebuild the car as close to the original specifications as possible. One example, and I know this will open much discussion, was that my Dad spent months when he was in England, trying to find the surplus, post-war, green-gray camophlage paint the factory used as a primer for the firewall and engine. Which he finally did! Their attention to detail was repeated throughout the rebuild. Parts came from well-known suppliers (eg. facia panel from Craig Seabrook…80 USD in May of ’82; restored original “speedo”, “rev counter”, etc from Vintage Restorations in Tunbridge Wells, Kent). I have the project’s log and receipts.
Now, some other things. My father was an aviator through and through, flew almost anything that could fly, was an aeronautical engineer and worked professionally in the aviation field all his life. When he retired, he bought an airplane and spent most of his retirement flying. TC3841, as pristine as it was, was driven infrequently, only occaisionally to classic airshows, but spent most of the time in the garage under a cover. When I would come to visit from Europe with the kids, the car would be uncovered, the battery charged, and the kids would get a ride around the block. Then back TC3841 would go, covered, into the garage.
My Dad and I always had a great common interest….race cars. We would follow the Formula 1 circuit around Europe (he always managed to somehow get pit passes). We ralleyed together as a team in France with an old Ferrari he bought in Italy and did hill climbs in Switzerland in a used Lancia HF. We had great fun.
My Dad passed away in November 2010. He was 89.
I inherited TC3841. The car is now in Sweden, where I have lived for the past 25 years. I have promised myself that the car WILL BE DRIVEN. It is being checked out and readied for the swedish vehicle inspection and will be licensed next week. I’m signed up for the European MG Event 2012, here in Sweden, in August.
I feel a lot of guilt for not have blooded my knuckles yet from a stubbern bolt, and fear, when I read all the members writing about broken half shafts, polarity reversals, carburator settings, front breakline orientation, etc. and my TC3841 doesn’t even have the sniffles . . Yet!
I KNOW, my friends, that soon, I, too, will be having sleepless nights because something, something will need to be fixed. After all, it’s a TC..post hoc ergo propter hoc.
But I am now in the company of trusted, knowledgeable MG-TABC afficionados and I feel good..da da da da da da da!
Your friend, Steve
PS. Pictures taken the day the car arrived in Sweden