OT [car, not home, repair]


OK, those subthreads in my recent humungous όber-thread on "made in China" about automobiles has me thinking about a long-ago car I used to own, and whether in retrospect I could've gotten it running.
Bear in mind this is completely hypothetical at this time, as the car is long gone, as are the days when I enjoyed tinkering with cars (hate it now).
I used to own a cute li'l car that I got for next to nothing; a Sunbeam Minx. Not an Alpine, mind you: instead of a sports car, this was a little 4-door sedan. Really compact. Ran but needed a whole shitload of stuff, from the drive train to headlight trim to who knows what else. This was back in the 19-ought-80s.
Back then, in the days before the Internet (is it actually possible that we used to survive--nay, thrive--back in the days when you had to use these black instruments called "telephones" and look up stuff in catalogs and mail order stuff?), I found a place that had all that stuff needed to restore Rootes Group cars. Forget the name, but it was an outfit up in Canada, if I remember correctly.
So I'm just wondering if it would have been possible to fix up that little car, and how much trouble and money it might have taken. If it were running today, how much would it be worth? Haven't seen one of them since then.
--
I am a Canadian who was born and raised in The Netherlands. I live on
Planet Earth on a spot of land called Canada. We have noisy neighbours.
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David Nebenzahl wrote:

Sunbeam(as well as Alpine). Worst car I ever had to keep it running. Wife insisted on driving Tiger in our younger days. Not a single part of the car was reliable. Stromberg side draft carbs. fuel pump, electrical system with Lucas semi alternator...... I had to bribe wife with new car to make her give up the Tiger. Now I am gonna have a nightmare tonight thinking about Sunbeam, LOL!
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Tony Hwang wrote:

Sure, get her a Fiat Sipder instead.
I remember Lucas electrical stuff. The Duke of Darkness.
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Ed Pawlowski wrote:

She got Datsun PL510, much better than either. Now my family is fan of Subaru, Honda. I may buy a Toyota next for myself. Probably my last vehicle in this life. Season's greetings. Snow next three days here. Just -10 C today.
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Tony Hwang wrote:

I used to laugh at people that would buy a Hyundai. I just bought my second one last week. The first was an '07 Sonata that was trouble free for the three+ years I owned it. Traded it at 67000 miles becuase the dealer made me an offer I could not refuse.
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Ed Pawlowski wrote:

Heck, Hyundai has a plant in Montgomery, AL that's supposed to be the most advanced auto manufacturing plant in the world.
TDD
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On 12/20/2009 22:04, Ed Pawlowski wrote:

Just had a rental of a new Sonata for almost a week. Really solid car and it handles well.
It just took them a while to figure out how to build quality. I have been to S Korea a number of times for technology transfer with the first trips around the time when "Lucky Goldstar" meant you were buying total junk. Now LG is one of the premier manufacturers in the world.
Meanwhile we decided manufacturing is not important and are twittering and voting on American idol as we circle the rim.
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I agree...I bought SWMBO an '06 Elantra new...Been a GREAT car....Especially for 14 grand.....
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No,Lucas is the "PRINCE of Darkness".
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Jim Yanik
jyanik
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Why English drink warm beer.....
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Christopher A. Young
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On 12/20/2009 4:24 PM Ed Pawlowski spake thus:

As in "Lucas, I am your father. Come to the dark side, Lucas!"?
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I am a Canadian who was born and raised in The Netherlands. I live on
Planet Earth on a spot of land called Canada. We have noisy neighbours.
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David Nebenzahl wrote:

"We have cookies."
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Oh, I'm still in pain from laughing.
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wrote:

a Hullman, though?) Same thing and possibly sold under more than one badge (come to think of it, I think it was also sold as a HUMBER????)
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On 12/20/2009 5:22 PM snipped-for-privacy@snyder.on.ca spake thus:

I thought so too.

The one I had was definitely a Sunbeam Minx. As I remember, there were actually two of them at the time in Flagstaff, AZ, where I was, which was pretty remarkable for a small town. I have no idea where they came from.
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wrote Re Re: OT [car, not home, repair]:

Yep. Ditto for the 1961 Alpine.
--
Work is the curse of the drinking class.

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On Sun, 20 Dec 2009 15:07:01 -0800, David Nebenzahl wrote:

Interesting. I'm familiar with Sunbeam (tinkered with the idea of buying a Tiger or Alpine at one point in time) - Hillman made the Minx in the UK, but Google tells me it was rebadged and sold as a Sunbeam product for the US market and so they're the same car. However, the Minx name - at least in the UK under Hillman - covered quite a long period and a variety of different body styles., and I'm not sure which of them were rebadged and sold as Sunbeams.

Pretty much anything is restorable. For a few years I used to pass a little Singer Gazelle (Singer* were another Rootes Group member, and I believe the Gazelle used 1950s Minx running gear) sitting on its side in someone's driveway, half-covered by a tarp. Moved away from that area, came back about a decade later, and there it was, fully restored and back on four wheels.
* no relation to Singer US, makers of sewing machines.

Not sure - probably depends on what year your car was. Rootes Group stuff from the 50s and later seems to survive pretty well, but I bet pre-WWII Minxes are hard to come by these days.
cheers
Jules
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David Nebenzahl wrote:

The first (and last) brand new car I bought was a Sunbeam Alpine in its first year of manufacture. I chose it because it had roll up glass side windows while all the other two seater convertible roadsters I could afford used flimsy plastic "side curtains."
The car had numerous faults, the xmission had to be opened up and fixed after a couple of thousand miles because a snap ring which kept things stacked on the main shaft snapped and had to be replaced.
The trunk latch was inertia sensitive as I found out when I went over a bump at about 35 MPH, the trunk lid popped open and a pile of my laundry blew all over the road, some never to be found. (I fixed that one myself by adding a stronger spring to the lath mechanism.
Thanx for the mammaries. Since then every car I've purchased has been a 1 to 2 year old mid to high end vehicle, and I've been very happy about letting the first owners take the major depreciation hits and the first few door dings.
Jeff
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