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1979 Mini City 850


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#1 pusb

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Posted 04 July 2017 - 08:35 PM

This is my Mini in all her glory:

 

 

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I have owned it since February 2014, using it as my sole source of transport for the first year, and then as a second car since then. I have done around 8k miles in it, and I am fortunate to say it has never let me down.

 

From the records I have I know it had its current paint job in 2006. It is finished in New Holland Blue with a David Brown White roof. That is tractor paint for those of you that don't know. The previous owner considered tractor paint to be the best at keeping rust at bay. 

 

I was unable to cope with the colossal power of the original 850 A series engine! So I replaced that with a 1275 engine and stage 1 kit last year (stupid really as I should've waited and done all this work at once. I still have the 850 block so if required the car can always be reunited with its original engine at a later date. 

 

I have never restored a car before, so I hope I can pick it up.

 

So a few general pictures of how it is right now:

 

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As you can see from a distance it still looks ok. However, up close you can see the signs of rot setting in. The most serious is in the dreaded oversills:

 

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And in the rear companion bin

 

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Then a few bits around the rest of the car

 

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I know the floorpans aren't great either, I hope I am capable of sorting these bodywork issues out.

 

I hope to take the car back to originality as much as possible, whilst keeping the 1275 engine and disc brakes.

 

The 850 City model was in production for only 14 months, and I have seen no others in original condition. I am under no illusions of this being a valuable model, but original examples of an 850 City must be extremely rare these days.

 

 



#2 pusb

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Posted 04 July 2017 - 08:41 PM

I imagine this will take me a couple of years. I do not yet know how to weld, also my budget needs to be tight!

 

A good spray job will then be needed, so I am sure that will hit my wallet hard! I hope to have the whole car redone in Pageant Blue.



#3 slidehammer

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Posted 06 July 2017 - 02:12 PM

Nice looking mini, that must have been getting near the end of production of the 850cc engine. I think they finished them the following year (1980) and went over to the 998cc engines. Good luck with it.

#4 Avtovaz

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Posted 06 July 2017 - 06:07 PM

i dont know if the engine i had in my first mini was the original, but i think it was and that was a 82 and it was 850...

 

 

nice car, looking forward to the progress.



#5 pusb

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Posted 10 July 2017 - 07:51 PM

Had a busy weekend, so didn't get a great deal done.

 

Got the seats and the steering wheel out but that was about it. Think I'll have to pick up the pace to get this done before the end of the decade!

 

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#6 mini_matt_106

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Posted 10 July 2017 - 08:15 PM

Looks like a lovely little mini. Pick up a cheap mig and get practising on some sheet steel

#7 pusb

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Posted 14 July 2017 - 09:14 PM

So got some more of the interior out today.

 

If you think I am going slow its because I am being meticulous about the strip down. I am recording where all the parts go and taking lots of pictures.

 

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An example of the fine detail paid to the last respray!

 

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Found some major corrosion here. Looks a lot worse in reality than the picture suggests. The small flat bit just in front of the wheel arch is flaking, and it is no longer attached to the lip bit by the actual wing (sorry for my non technical language!).

 

 

 

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#8 pusb

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Posted 29 August 2017 - 07:27 PM

Doesn't feel like I have got very far yet. Due to my way of noting everything down it has taken me a while, also I get distracted easily!

 

So the interior is mostly out and stored away now, the boot lid and rear loom are out, along with the fuel tank. I've been trying to get the soundproofing up off the floor but its a nightmare.

 

 

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Rear window frames seem ok, no serious rust under there

 

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However the passenger door has a fair bit of rust

 

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And then there is this. A 4 inch gouge where the passenger inner sill meets the rear floorplan. What would cause it to rot like this in a straight line?

 

 

 

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Also I discovered this hole on the drivers rear quarter panel. Goes right the way through

 

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Front passenger footwell looking a bit of a mess, but I can't see that it hasn't rotted through from what I can see

 

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Also the paint peels off so easily. When I get it resprayed it is going to need all the old paint to come off I think.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



#9 pusb

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Posted 29 August 2017 - 07:36 PM

Also a very small hole in the boot

 

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And some general pictures

 

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#10 Vinay-RS

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Posted 30 August 2017 - 08:07 AM

The body really doesn't look too bad. Will you be getting new doors and other panels or is some of it just surface rust? 



#11 pusb

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Posted 31 August 2017 - 07:45 PM

The body really doesn't look too bad. Will you be getting new doors and other panels or is some of it just surface rust? 

 

It doesn't seem too bad. I think I read before that 70's Mini's were pretty good at resisting rust.

 

So far I think it will need two new doors, new sills, heel board, and then whatever else I find.



#12 lawrence

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Posted 01 September 2017 - 07:18 AM

Looks like the previous owner spent some money on sound deadening there, personally I wouldn't rip all that off if the bodywork is solid underneath :) keep up the good work
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#13 pusb

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Posted 15 October 2017 - 02:05 PM

The snail pace continues!

 

Got the rear end up on stands now.

 

Have been soaking the subframe bolts in penetrating fluid for a couple of days, had a go at undoing one of them today. First attempt resulted in snapped bolt  >_<

 

I didn't even turn it that hard, I was very gentle with it. I guess the others need more penetrating fluid.

 

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#14 73MkIII

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Posted 15 October 2017 - 04:57 PM

Looks good so far. Lots of rust pockets so I wish you all the best when you start digging.

#15 Hedgey

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Posted 19 October 2017 - 01:34 PM


 

 

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Possibly time for some new shelves?






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