Everyone's a comedian

Since our mad dash to get the Davrian ready for (the aborted) Blyth show, this month has been mainly about "running in" and snagging.  We've had the car out and about, on longer and longer runs, and so far, so good, although I'd quite forgotten how hard you have to push to make four drum brakes (without servo assist) stop a moving vehicle.


Photo of Davrian with Bonnet and Engine Cover openWe started with a few niggles  in the wiring: mainly the facts that putting on the brakes a) stopped the indicators from working and b) lit up the dashboard like a christmas tree.  The Davrian shows its racing heritage in the easily removed bonnet and engine cover, with the wiring for the lights at each is connected to the car via a trailer type socket and plug for quick removal.  (See Pic) When we've installed the new loom it was taken as far as the two sockets, the wiring for the lights being left alone at this stage.  That turned out to be a mistake as the wiring for the stop lights was back to front at the bulb holders putting power to the common earth when the brakes were applied. At that point the indicators would stop working and power would leak back through the sidelights illuminating the dash.  Once the wiring was corrected at the bulb holders, all worked as it should.

We've done some fit and finish - carpeting for the drivers side has been installed and new rubber mats in the footwells.  A new gear knob and a centrepiece for the steering wheel all help to make it look more like a car than a project - the forty year old fibreglass shell notwithstanding.  In an effort to get full value from the Triumph warning light cluster, a brake pedal switch has been repurposed and hitched to the choke lever, so we now get a warning light when the choke is applied.  However, the law of uninteded consequenses has intervened: the spring on the switch is so strong it pulls the choke off when you let go, so the choke has to held on to start the engine (negating any need for a warning light!).  Some adjustment required, methinks.

Anyway, our latest test run was to take the car to the Classic Car and Bike Night at the Great North Air Ambulance Service base at Urlay Nook, Darlington.  To make the run a bit more interesting, once we were through the Tyne Tunnel, we went via the coast road from Whitburn, through Roker, Ryhope and stopping in Seaham for a cup of coffee.  We'd parked in one of the sea front car parks and were a little dismayed on our return to spot a Police car parked right next to the Davrian - though we could think of no reason why, we wondered if we were in trouble. 

As we approached the car we were as nonchalant as we could be as we unlocked the doors, and then it began "Excuse me", he said "what kind of car is that?" I explained she is a Davrian, built in the seventies, registered as a historic vehicle etc. etc. in the hope heading off any further investigations.  At this point another Police car arrives and parks behind us, effectively blocking us in.   He continues " We were just saying how difficult it must be getting in, with the car being so low and then look, probably the tallest guy in the North East turns up - we'd love to see how you do it".  I think he thought he was funny!  Especially, since it seems he'd got his mate to come and watch too!

By this point, Denise is already ensconced inthe car, so I do my little jig and fold myself into the car.  Police car number two moves politely out of the way and they all give us a wave as we drive away heading for GNAAS. 

Photo of Cars (Including a Robin Hood) at GNAAS

The car and bike night was well attended - they had to close both car parks (one for bikes and one for cars) and redirect latecomers to an overflow space. 

We had no sooner parked (not even got out of the car) when we were accosted by a guy exclaiming "Oh My God a Davrian!"  It turns out he's from Yarm, had turned up in a Hillman Imp, has a Clan and says he has a Davrian "in progress".  We all know what that means...  

There were all sorts there, a good mix of vintage, classic and sporty types.  We spotted a Robin Hood and had a chat with the owners. It had a luggage space very like ours - full with a Tow Rope, Jump Leads, and a gallon of petrol - just in case! 

We stayed for about 90 minutes having availed ourselves of the coffee and doughnuts (mainly as an excuse to give the Air Ambulance some money) used their Toilets and then we set off for home.

As always, click on the photos below for more detail


Photo of Davrian with Bonnet and Engine Cover open
Photo of Cars (Including a Robin Hood) at GNAAS
Photo of Cars 2 at GNAAS