What was the worst legal shed you had , or drove in your formative years

#41
Thinking about it, the volvo 240 was ancient but pretty good* until the day it decided that turning off the ignition wasn't necessarily going to turn the engine off.



*no, it was awful. Legal, but awful
 
#42
drove one like this for 20 years till it died
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it had only done 240k so the engine was still running in
 
#43
I had a 2 door Mk1 Escort 1.1 that had seen better days. I never had it serviced, and neither had the last owner. It was on it's 3rd set of front inner wing suspension top plates, and at least one wasn't even fully welded. When the underseal shrank, you could see the road through the gap between it and the inner wing. It was a 1970 model, with drum brakes all round, and they were shit. A full brake application had it diving violently to the right.

One day, a front suspension strut snapped, but I carried on driving it for a few weeks until I could find a cheap back street garage to fix it. One of the rear leaf springs snapped as well, and luckily our local scrap yard at the time employed a bloke who would fit replacement parts for an extra few quid. Even better, the springs he fitted were off a 35cwt van, so once fitted, the car had very little body roll.

There were holes in the front floor pans, and the water got in and rotted the carpets. One summer I repaired some of the holes with filler and an old Rapid Shave can. I didn't quite underseal over all of it and from a certain angle throught the wheel arch you could see the Rapid Shave logo in red and black.

I crashed it into the back of a van one day whilst messing with the tape player. It creased the bonnet but a friend of mine stood on it while I bent it straight again.

The propshaft UJs wore out and made the car vibrate so much it was like driving a dildo, and the rear mirror shook so much the view of the road behind was a blur at 40 and above. Top speed was about 75 on level roads, and 50 on hills. I used to get on the A3 at Petersfield and overtake slower cars on the chevrons to maintain a half decent speed. If I slowed down, it took about half a mile to get up to 50 again. Traffplod in an E28 pulled me one day for doing it.
The diff went as well, and the noise was horrible. I think it must have run out of oil. And the clutch pressure plate went as well. This resulted in a very soft pedal and a lot of clutch slip. A mate repaired it for me, and it plodded on for a bit longer, until at the next MOT it failed on loads of rust round the front suspension turrets, inner wings and sills, so I sold it for £25 to some bloke my sister knew who bought shit cars. Crazy thing is, I bet it would be worth 5k now, even in that condition.

I was given a Fiat 127 by a friend who was moving abroad, and it came with 2 weeks tax and a week's MOT. It was a 1050cc OHC with a 4 speed gearbox, and shit brakes. Some 127s had alloy front brake calipers, and when the piston came out far enough, it would move over at a slight angle and oval the bore, so the piston couldn't retract properly, and the brakes on that side would constantly bind afterwards. Anything other then very light braking caused this, and you could tell because the car would have hardly any acceleration. I used to carry a Peter Sutcliffe starter kit (hammer) with me to hit the back of caliper to release it.
One evening, a Ford Transit crashed into the back wing, putting a large dent in it. Worse still, a load of paint and rust fell off, leaving it full of holes. I used parcel tape to cover them up, then sprayed over it with red oxide primer.
It had a flat spot, and one day, I floored the throttle and it stalled. When I took the top of the carburretor off, I found a dead moth covering the jet in the bottom of the float chamber. Once cleaned out, the car was quite quick off the mark.
When the tax ran out, I broke it up for spares. I took all the window glass out, and prior to this, the tailgate wouldn't stay up on it's own, due to knackered struts, but without the weight of the glass, it went up so quick you had to jump out of the way or get twatted in the face by it. The engine lived on in another 127 for a few more years, and we fitted it using a lot of swearing and a trolley jack. When it was just a rolling shell, we towed it to the scrap yard. They didn't give any money for it, but they didn't charge us for it either.
 
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#44
I had a 2 door Mk1 Escort 1.1 that had seen better days. I never had it serviced, and neither had the last owner. It was on it's 3rd set of front inner wing suspension top plates, and at least one wasn't even fully welded. When the underseal shrank, you could see the road through the gap between it and the inner wing. It was a 1970 model, with drum brakes all round, and they were shit. A full brake application had it diving violently to the right.

One day, a front suspension strut snapped, but I carried on driving it for a few weeks until I could find a cheap back street garage to fix it. One of the rear leaf springs snapped as well, and luckily our local scrap yard at the time employed a bloke who would fit replacement parts for an extra few quid. Even better, the springs he fitted were off a 35cwt van, so once fitted, the car had very little body roll.

There were holes in the front floor pans, and the water got in and rotted the carpets. One summer I repaired some of the holes with filler and an old Rapid Shave can. I didn't quite underseal over all of it and from a certain angle throught the wheel arch you could see the Rapid Shave logo in red and black.

I crashed it into the back of a van one day whilst messing with the tape player. It creased the bonnet but a friend of mine stood on it while I bent it straight again.

The propshaft UJs wore out and made the car vibrate so much it was like driving a dildo, and the rear mirror shook so much the view of the road behind was a blur at 40 and above. Top speed was about 75 on level roads, and 50 on hills. I used to get on the A3 at Petersfield and overtake slower cars on the chevrons to maintain a half decent speed. If I slowed down, it took about half a mile to get up to 50 again. Traffplod in an E28 pulled me one day for doing it.
The diff went as well, and the noise was horrible. I think it must have run out of oil. And the clutch pressure plate went as well. This resulted in a very soft pedal and a lot of clutch slip. A mate repaired it for me, and it plodded on for a bit longer, until at the next MOT it failed on loads of rust round the front suspension turrets, inner wings and sills, so I sold it for £25 to some bloke my sister knew who bought shit cars. Crazy thing is, I bet it would be worth 5k now, even in that condition.

I was given a Fiat 127 by a friend who was moving abroad, and it came with 2 weeks tax and a week's MOT. It was a 1050cc OHC with a 4 speed gearbox, and shit brakes. Some 127s had alloy front brake calipers, and when the piston came out far enough, it would move over at a slight angle and oval the bore, so the piston couldn't retract properly, and the brakes on that side would constantly bind afterwards. Anything other then very light braking caused this, and you could tell because the car would have hardly any acceleration. I used to carry a Peter Sutcliffe starter kit (hammer) with me to hit the back of caliper to release it.
One evening, a Ford Transit crashed into the back wing, putting a large dent in it. Worse still, a load of paint and rust fell off, leaving it full of holes. I used parcel tape to cover them up, then sprayed over it with red oxide primer.
It had a flat spot, and one day, I floored the throttle and it stalled. When I took the top of the carburretor off, I found a dead moth covering the jet in the bottom of the float chamber. Once cleaned out, the car was quite quick off the mark.
When the tax ran out, I broke it up for spares. I took all the window glass out, and prior to this, the tailgate wouldn't stay up on it's own, due to knackered struts, but without the weight of the glass, it went up so quick you had to jump out of the way or get twatted in the face by it. The engine lived on in another 127 for a few more years, and we fitted it using a lot of swearing and a trolley jack. When it was just a rolling shell, we towed it to the scrap yard. They didn't give any money for it, but they didn't charge us for it either.
That reminds me of my 127 I owned ages ago. Think I paid £80 for it.

Being a surveyor at the time I stopped at a house in the sticks and did whatever I was supposed to do and drove off. I noticed that the brakes weren't up to much and required more and more effort to stop the car. This continued until I got back to the office, I was using the handbrake by then to stop. Having to get home I had a mate in the office who had an equally shite car, so he agreed to drive in front as there were some hills in the way, If my judicious application of the handbrake wasn't stopping me, the back bumper of the car in front would. Anyhoo, we managed to get the car to a fixer-upper mate without too much bumper bashing and he fixed the problem (although a little surprised at what he saw). A few days later I was back at the house I visited to do something, and they handed me a plastic bag with the caliper piston and other parts in it. You left these behind last time you were here they told me.
 
#45
Austin Montenogo,1600 for me. Bought it about 1998 or so, hauling out to Grain at silly o clock in the morning pitch black and it dies. Sat there scratching me head, fuel, etc. Then after about five minutes tried the starter and off we went. Clocked off passed the pub on the way home did exactly the same. Got home rang a few people oh yes.. Electronic sensor in the bell housing for timing, clutch gets hot it damages the sensor. Decided to get rid swapped it with a dealer chappie for an SD1 2Litre. Best move ever. Brill car, bags of space a tad underpowered but a real little trojan.
 
#46
Years ago I was given an ancient but nippy Fiat uno 1600 by a friend who was going to scrap it, bodywork was rusty holes held together with red paint which got bigger every time you shut a door or slammed the boot. I used it for a summer of commuting through some unsavoury parts of Leeds, where it blended in nicely. Then came autumn when I discovered that the sunroof leaked over the driver’s seat, and the wipers only worked in the dry... minor inconveniences until I slowed for traffic lights in Chapeltown (where it gets dark early) and the gearbox selectors broke, and I was stuck in second (this is why you don’t drive with your hand on the gearstick kiddies). I managed to get it into a McDonald’s car park where the selectors broke some more and left me in second and reverse. Handily, mobile phones had recently been invented so I called herself for a tow, to which she replied “Chapeltown, rushhour, pïssing down” which I took to mean ‘No’. Eventually she turned up and dragged me home, when I discovered that the clutch was really heavy when you have to hold it down for 30mins... It then sat on the drive until the weekend when it was towed to the scrapyard...
I did get £20 for it though.
 
#47
Thinking about it, the volvo 240 was ancient but pretty good* until the day it decided that turning off the ignition wasn't necessarily going to turn the engine off.



*no, it was awful. Legal, but awful
Thinking about it, the volvo 240 was ancient but pretty good* until the day it decided that turning off the ignition wasn't necessarily going to turn the engine off.



*no, it was awful. Legal, but awful

Exactly the same on a Volvo ... errrr.. 340 was it? I had, early 90s. Had to deliberately stall it to turn the engine off.
 
#48
My first car, bought in 1979 , a 1960 Mini Cooper in very sun-bleached orange with matching rusting chrome. I say it cost £30 but actually I knocked the guy down to £22 and the cans of spray paint to turn it black cost £8. A Tesco shopping bag was kept in the door map pocket in case it rained, it was then worn over the left foot as there was a leak. It did 45 on the flat, 55 downhill, 10mph, in first, up not terribly steep ones. It was technically legal due to a bent MOT every year until 1985 when the wheel bearing went but Mrs F sold it for £60.
In days of yore I always found that a "blind man's MOT" (ie genuine article, but issued without so much as walking around the car) was inevitability cheaper than perpetual purchases of gaffer tape and expanding foam.
 
#49
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I'll get my coat.
 
#50
I bought a " Classic" red MG Midget with the cash I had saved in the Falklands in 1987.

The thing looked OK ish but found out it was a shed.

It was 69 vintage with wire wheels , painted silver with a can from Halfords.

After buying it I bought the Haynes manual to find the car needed oil changes for about everything , rear diff, gearbox, motor, webber carbs after 4000 miles or so.

First change of the oil in the gear box, nice big nut on the left side, I did not have a spanner big enough so walked to a local garage and asked to borrow one. Nice enough the mechanic said yes.

Back the the car, tried to "un screw" the bolt, thing fell out, last owner had , as a guess cross threaded the steel bolt into the alloy gearbox housing and had simply filed the bolt into a triangle and hit it home with a hammer.

Driving home weeks later , refuelling in a garage in Hereford, filled up, paid , went to car and . Wirrrrrrr, wirrrrr thing would not start.

Bloke behind walked up with a hammer? WTF ?

Hello , I am a collector of MGs, your bendix is jammed. Just try again and I'll give it a tap. Worked .

Few weeks later I skidded it and went through a hedge. Luck would have it I was in the AA and they recover me and took it to a MG specialist in Newcastle.

On inspection for the hedge damage the mechanics said..

" You do know this car not road worthy, the front end is shot, the back end is shot and most of the body work is plaster of Paris"

Spent the rest of my savings 1800 quid to get it road worthy.

As I was serving at RAF Boulmer at the time, on going back I put it for sale in the NAAFI , a young RAF Lt came up, must have thought the same as me, WOW red MG I'll have that.

Good job , I only lost 1800 quid on it.
 
#51
My first car was a 1978 S Reg Cavalier 1600 Mk1. It was a nice little car and comfortable to drive distances. I only got rid of it as I slid it on a roundabout and knocked the back axle 2” to the side.

I needed a car quick and ended up with a Y reg Mk2 Cavalier. This thing was a real shed but I needed a car quickly to get back to base. The brakes didn’t work as well as the Mk1, but hey it’s a new car, so they’re different. Over time they got worse, needing a really good shove to get them to work.

The car burnt oil as quick as it did petrol. I would fill up at Wootton Bassett before driving down to Helston. A quick top up of fuel and oil at Exeter then fill up in Helston. Run around for 6 days then repeat back to Lyneham. Lots of filling up with fuel and oil. The fuel gauge did not work, so I ensured I always kept it topped up. The valve stem seals were knackered so would leave a huge cloud of blue smoke behind on the overrun.

The cars party trick was for the engine to stop randomly. The cable for the electronic ignition to the distributor would randomly fall out. Being a highly trained and skilled aircraft technician I fixed it. With black nasty. After it failed a few more times due to the black nasty not liking the heat and oil all over it I finally did it correctly with a tie wrap.

I hated that car and only kept it a few months before changing it for a 1983 Opel Manta 1800 Coupe. That car was nice car to drive. I felt at home in it as it was basically the same as the Mk1 Cavalier.

RP.
 
#52
1957 Ford Squire ... no, I know that only a few of the older cognoscenti on these hallowed portals will be aware of this beast. I was 16, my Old Man bought it for my mother to drive (yes, they were at that stage of their relationship) and for me to be taught by him how to do car maintenance. It was the Ford equivalent of the Morris Minor Traveller, equipped with similar wooden sidebars. An 1172cc 4-cylinder side-valve engine and three-speed gearbox ... every hill encountered required you to stir this thing from a screaming second gear to a chugging third ... backwards and forwards ... and the windscreen wipers were operated from a vacuum tank connected to the inlet manifold, so as you accelerated they would stop, and when you slowed down they would flap madly like your aged aunt having an attack of the vapours. It was black; my mates called it 'The Hearse'. It had a top speed of 70mph, at which point driving it was like being in a Lancaster at Mach 0.99.
 

greyfergie

MIA
Book Reviewer
#53
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A Moskvitch 408 estate. It was the reason I never ever feared the Russians. Weighed about the same as the moon with a 1400 engine.... completely feckin useless...
 
#56
My first car was probably the worst shed, MK1 Escort 1100, brought it off one of the VMs in Hildesheim. I had had 2 weeks when the McPherson struts came through the mounts and the bonnet. To be fair to the VM he did weld them back in place for free.

I could mention the Lada Riva that boiled over, the Vauxhall Victor that I had to drive from Manchester to Bournemouth, in third gear cuz it kept jumping out of 4th, even with me holding it in gear along with my then GF, legs and hands trying to keep it in 4th.
 
#57
Citroen Visa. The first one was bought cos the missus insisted it looked nice.
It scraped through the first MOT and failed on the second, owing to being patched up with fibre glass.
It was fully loaded with velour seats and everything.
The night I got rid of it a mate came around and told me he was emigrating the next day to Canada and needed to offload his car for nothing.
I asked what it was and he said "Citroen Visa".
It was bog standard poverty spec but came with tax and MOT.
Ran it for six months and never opened the bonnet.
It was not strictly legal but ran better than the first one.
It was never registered to me and i left it on the street somewhere.
 
#58
Although I had decent cars, the wife decided that we needed a second car.
First one was an Allegro 1100 in baby nappy beige. The hydrolastic had never been replenished, and so it cornered like a kart, I went round the outside of a Lotus at speed on a roundabout by simply not slowing down. One fine day clouds appeared from under the bonnet not steam but petrol vapour, seems the ht leads were better than I thought. Eventually the steering column switches broke up and the car would fill with smoke I would poke the hot wires until the smoke ceased and on we went. I gave the car to a mate who ran it for a few months until it burst into flames.

Second was a Skoda Estelle, top of the range 3 years old and 400 quid. Half the electrics didn't work but most did after a squirt of wd40 and a tweak with pliers.
After a while the oil pump failed, a mate worked for a breakers and a replacement engine was fitted as the breakers just wanted rid of the one they had...
While stationary a Rover 600 drove into the back, writing off the Skoda and doing £1500 of damage to the Rover. I bought the salvage back and repaired the car for £25.
Eventually the head gasket went and shortly after the oil pump died, and that was the end of the beast. It was great in the wet, 360 degree spins at 30mph round corners if you floored it and the sort of excitement that would need a racetrack for in anything sensible. It was comfortable and rode well, no rust on it when it died, but it was only about seven years old.
 

greyfergie

MIA
Book Reviewer
#60
My first car was probably the worst shed, MK1 Escort 1100, brought it off one of the VMs in Hildesheim. I had had 2 weeks when the McPherson struts came through the mounts and the bonnet. To be fair to the VM he did weld them back in place for free.

I could mention the Lada Riva that boiled over, the Vauxhall Victor that I had to drive from Manchester to Bournemouth, in third gear cuz it kept jumping out of 4th, even with me holding it in gear along with my then GF, legs and hands trying to keep it in 4th.
See that? That was your mistake right there... thieving bastards
 

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