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Mini 25 Full Rebuild


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#1 Ben_O

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Posted 03 May 2013 - 10:05 AM

Hi all.

For those interested, this is hopefully going to be a full build diary for the resto of my Mini 25.

So first a history lesson!

I bought the car in 2003 for £30 to save it from the scrap yard and planned to do a few repairs etc to get it on the road as to be fair it was in remarkable condition despite several bodge it and run repairs! However I only owned it for a few days when I was talking to my uncle and he took a liking to it and made me an offer I couldn't refuse! so it changed hands again.

 

He took it to a local Mini specialist who fitted new outer sills, a couple of patches to the front floors plus a few other minor bits and m.o.t'd  it then on the road it went!

 

He ran it for a few months before being made an offer by his mate so once again it changed hands.

Then it sat in its new owners front garden alongside a donor Metro GTa for 5 years with plans for the K-series conversion but nothing came of it. 

 

I passed by his house in 2008 and could barely make the Mini out behind a mass of undergrowth! Needless to say I was shocked at the state it was in, especially as when it was parked there it had a long M.O.T and Tax. Such a shame.

 

I decided to knock his door and make him an offer. It was surprisingly difficult to persuade him to sell but after a cup of tea and a chat he decided to sell it to me for £100 

I emptied gallons of water out from the foot wells and cut back the weeds etc and managed to tow it home.

 

The following pictures show its condition at this point.

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Pretty bad but all do-able so I set to work stripping out the interior which went in my mum's loft as it was pretty good!

I threw out all the bad bits and ended up with a rolling shell + engine.

Sadly a few weeks later it was starting to look like I would need to sell again as we were moving from Kent to the Isle of Wight and just couldn't afford to have it transported there so I spoke to my cousin who was looking out for a Mini and he bought it from me for £250! 

 

Anyway, Fast forward to 2011 and I was speaking to him on the phone and he mentioned that the garage he was storing it in had collapsed around the Mini and was in danger of completely falling down and perhaps crushing the mini and he had nowhere for it to go so I did some sums and got some quotes to have it transported and before I knew it, it was outside my house on the Isle of Wight on a trailer covered with a sheet!

I had no idea what to expect as I hadn't seen it again since selling it to him years before and I bought it back blind (Idiot, I know) So I peeled back the tarpaulin and was surprised when I saw what state it was in!

Pictures!

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I'll leave it there for now as I have to go out but I will post more updates later.

Comments welcome of course!

 

 



#2 TheMiniDream

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Posted 03 May 2013 - 04:22 PM

£30 in my eyes you have got an absolute bargain. and defo kudos point for saving it :D



#3 TheMiniDream

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Posted 03 May 2013 - 04:24 PM

so is £100 :D



#4 Ben_O

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Posted 03 May 2013 - 05:39 PM

£30 in my eyes you have got an absolute bargain. and defo kudos point for saving it :D

 

 

so is £100 :D

I know!

Its going to be a long job ahead as a lot of the panels are rotten.

There is a hole in the front corner of the roof that has been letting water in for a long time now and it has rotted out the windscreen frame and the adjoining door aperture frame, the inner wing and flitch as well as the top corner of the bulkhead has completely gone and so has the top and bottom dash rails on those ends. the whole front corner of the car has started to collapse where there is nothing to hold it together. If only the bloke who bought it off my uncle had popped a bit of tape over the hole or even bodged some filler or fibreglass in the hole then perhaps none of this would have happened. Oh well it will all go back in place with a little skulduggery!

What made me mad is that when my cousin abandoned it in his garage he left the bonnet off and where the garage roof was leaking, it has done a hideous amount of damage to the front cross member on the bulkhead! Idiot!!

Further updates to follow.

Ben



#5 Ben_O

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Posted 03 May 2013 - 05:55 PM

O.K More updates.

The following pictures and work were done last year at the start of the project. I will let the pictures do the talking.

DSC02492-1.jpg

First things first, after I removed the remaining few parts from inside like the steering column, pedal box etc, I took the grinder to the front panel and wings and whipped the engine and front subframe out. 

Notice the extensive rust to the aforementioned cross member, the bulk head itself has quite a few nasty holes in it too.

DSC02675_zpsd821654d.jpg

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Now its already to begin the panel work!

More later!

Ben



#6 Ben_O

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Posted 03 May 2013 - 06:56 PM

At this point The car port at the top of the drive where I was working on the Mini was needed to put the old jalopy Volvo under for some much needed work so I had to move the mini to the back garden down the side return so four of us carried it round the house to the back where it was placed on a makeshift stand over the steps!

Oh well at least I could still continue the work.

Pictures:

DSC02763_zps93cff085.jpg

I cut the inner wings back as they were scrap and started to remove the outer sill, door step, aperture frame and eventually the rest of the inner wing arch.

The eagle eyed among you will notice that I have not welded any strengthening poles in place but I didn't see the point as it was all rotten and there was a lot of movement in this area so I think I will have to start again and with careful measuring and plenty of trial fitting of panels it should be ok.

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Also I removed the front drivers floor pan quarter

This is what I was talking about  regarding the front cross member. I am aware of the fact you can buy the cross member and also cross member repair sections but I decided I'm going to make my own.

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The inner sill is beyond patching so that will have to be replaced in its entirety.

 

After this stage we were moving house and I was very happy when we chose a place that had a large garage with power, light and even a huge radiator! woo hoo!!

More on that soon.

 

Ben

 

 

 

 



#7 rally515

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Posted 03 May 2013 - 07:00 PM

Seems a goid project, these type of project layouts always intrigue me haha

Looking forward to your next installment ;)

 

Cliff



#8 Ben_O

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Posted 03 May 2013 - 07:24 PM

Right, Mini safely unloaded from a Transit Luton and into its new home.

 

I decided to start by tipping it on its side and remove all the under seal to see what the floors were like.

 

I was quite pleasantly surprised by what I found and apart from the two front floor sections which I knew I would be replacing the rest looks ok!

Oh, apart from the boot floor which is going to need complete replacement!

000_0080_zpsc0ccc01c.jpg

You will notice that I also removed the ropey old inner sill as it was doing nothing structurally.

Next I set about repairing the front cross member. The plan is to get the bulkhead and cross member all repaired first then move down the drivers side then the passenger side so basically work front to back.

 

Anyway my first issue with the cross member was the tapered holes for the tower bolt bushes. I needed a way of replicating this on the new section at home so I drilled a 30mm hole in a piece of scrap and mounted it over a 32mm socket then using a suitable size socket on an extension bar I hammered it through and the result was... well.... a result!

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You will notice I have also fabricated a section of the lower bulkhead panel above the toe board which is now tacked in place.

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And with the front piece made up and tacked in, we have this.

Just need to take some final measurements to make sure the subframe will go in ok and then I can weld it up fully and finish that bit up.

And this is where I am now!

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The Block of wood and scissor jack are just there to raise the bulkhead slightly as after taking measurements of the windscreen aperture, it had dropped 4mm this side, with the jack under its exactly right so good start I think. 

Cheers for now

Ben

 

 



#9 rally515

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Posted 03 May 2013 - 07:35 PM

Some good fabrication started here, that tower bolt hole idea was a gooden haha.

Top job so far ben, hope you keep it up.

 

Cheers

 

Cliff



#10 megamini_jb

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Posted 03 May 2013 - 07:52 PM

Will be following your project :)

#11 Ben_O

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Posted 03 May 2013 - 09:06 PM

Some good fabrication started here, that tower bolt hole idea was a gooden haha.

Top job so far ben, hope you keep it up.

 

Cheers

 

Cliff

yeah mate, couldn't think of any other way of doing it! I was going to heat it up before knocking the hole through but it didn't need it! I'd recommend this method to anyone needing to do this.

Cheers all!

Ben



#12 Ben_O

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Posted 15 May 2013 - 05:00 PM

Well, I know its been ages but I haven't been slacking too much, I've just been fabricating repair panels and small patches for the bulkhead so nothing interesting.

My Mig is on the fritz at the moment so I need to get that sorted, but on the plus side my mother-in-law has given me her M.O.T failure 1995 mondeo before it goes off for scrap so I have removed the bonnet, wings and am going to take an angle grinder to the door skins, tops of the quarter panels and any other panels that have pre-formed curves so lots of lovely free metal to use on the mini!!

I have been scratching my head trying to think of any other parts on the mondeo that I could save to use on the mini but im at a loss!!

 

Cheers

Ben



#13 Ben_O

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 08:57 PM

Well while I get my self sorted out and repair the welder :shy:  I have decided to start refurbishing some of the bits to go back on, As it was so neglected a lot of it was crusted up so required quite a lot of work.

Well this is the first bit I did.

The distributer:

Before and after pictures. sorry for the poor before pic but its the only one I have

 

More to come.....

 

Cheers

Ben

 

 

 

 

Attached Files



#14 malcs_miniturbo

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Posted 16 May 2013 - 09:39 PM

Good project I will be following this

#15 Ben_O

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Posted 10 June 2013 - 07:04 PM

Well I haven't posted much up lately and it's sad to say that the mini has been a bit neglected lately. 

I keep looking at it when I pop into the garage and think I must get my finger out.

I'm going to order some more panels next week and crack on. I'm going to get a dash top rail, a scuttle, a windscreen frame boxing panel and a door post boxing panel so I can get some strength back into the shell.

I will report back when I begin

Cheers

Ben






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