I'm Chris, 26, and currently restoring a 1989 Racing Green 998cc Austin Mini, and I absolutely love it.
I'm an Outdoor Instructor by Trade and although fairly useful in a workshop had no substantial experience working on cars, so was glad to see more and more up and coming youtube videos working on these little gems. Similarly to most I'm a big believer in learning by doing (and sometimes getting it wrong). Hopefully I'll be able to keep you updated with whats going on.
Look at this little Beaut! Bought off eBay last year and work started in November 2016. I was told the car hadn't been on the road for 15 years. It only has 14000 miles on the clock, and after inspection under a ramp looked to be genuine, The car was incredibly clean, probably garaged for most of its life.
After managing to start it, it ran and after a short test drive it was apparent the brakes were pretty useless, the engine could do with a service and the lights didn't work. There were some repairs to the a panels, wings, scuttle and doors that had been started and left and a bit of detective work tells me the car at some stage had also been parked very near another car that was being painted white at the time, what with all the dots and over spray covering the front end and passenger side.
Below are some pictures of the car as I got it, damage on doors and a panel, hole in the passenger sill and some rust in the scuttle. (also some drug dealer style rear tinted windows that I wasn't into, they were the first to go.)
Work began with stripping the car, lights, bonnet, bootlid, mirrors, grill, brightwork, trims. This allowed me to inspect for more rusty/damaged/need fixing bits. I also noticed that many rubber hoses and plastic gaiters had perished.
The engine then got stripped of its knackered radiator, the water pump that had a hole in it, thermostat, and anything that needed a paint/clean including rocker cover, alternator, thermostat housing, ignition coil, fan, washer bottle.
The water and old oil were dropped. and the perished bulk head insulation was removed,
Then every inch of the engine block I could get at (most of it) had a going over with the original mini 998 yellow.
Between layers of paint the front got some attention, new track rod ends, top&bottom ball joints, new calipers and pads, new CV boots, grease and steering rack gaiters.
The block after 3 coats of yellow, a new thermostat and a freshened up housing and new water pump fitted
New radiator (which took an hour and resulted in some badly cut hands) and hoses, cleaned up fan, freshly sprayed radiator housing and alternator.
The glass and interior was stripped out ready for some welding, (bar the roof lining after watching Tom have a go, I wasn't fancying it)
I put the car on the largest set of stands I could set my hands on allowing more room to get at the sills they were welded where needed, rubbed down then primed.
The rear hubs and shocks were then removed for painting.
The old shoes were also replaced (After a lot of swearing and fiddling with pointy nose pliers )
The arches then etch primed ready for paint, and hubs re-attached.
The scuttle was next to get the chop, given I want to get this project on the road as soon as possible and I'll be keeping it for as long as possible I was happy to patch the rusty section. This was cut out and replaced with a some solid metal found on a donor car.
Clamped into place before welding.
MORE TO COME!
Whilst restoring it, I have also gone and bought myself a 1988 Mayfair, bought stripped, bits missing and parts in boxes, with substantially more rust and holes in it than the racing green. (what was I thinking?!) Hey ho! I'll let you know when I jump into that one!