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1997 Mini Cooper Mpi


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#1 M700FGT

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Posted 21 January 2018 - 12:08 AM

Hi all,

 

Im back on the Mini scene after a few years away from a classic. My last was a 1993 Mini Mayfair, i think it was a daylight edition as there were so may holes!

 

Im not a mechanic, but im keen to learn (slowly while i get my confidence). I had to get rid of the last one as it was just beyond me, so its gone to a good home to be restored.... 

 

So i have just brought my 1997 Rover Mini Cooper MPI in Hawaiian Blue.

 

Already we are having issues. After the test drive the water pump started leaking. I did a deal with the owner to knock money off of the price to take care of that and a few other issues. Had to stop a few times on the way home, but i had forgotten just what a Mini means. Lots of smiles and waves, and even a very kind bloke came out offering to top up my water as my Mini pee'd brown water outside his house. 

 

Reverse appeared to be an issue, and the following day we managed to snap the clutch pedal thing to get reverse - to be fair the peddle was clearly not right and i had picked this up on the test drive. 

 

Got the car recovered to my local garage to assess the damage - I promised my wife i would get the Mini fully checked before we put our 15 month old in a death trap. We got a nice long list of parts needed: Clutch kit, clutch pedal, cluctch slave, header tank, water pump, steering arm, rear radius arms, oil pressure switch and two tyres.

 

There is also an issue with the wheels and spacers - i have opened a technical help on this issue (click here

 

So parts are on order from Mini Spares, Mini Sport and Somerford Mini - once they arrive the Mini will go back to have these fitted. Once thats done i will start working on the other issues.

 

Issues / Problems

 

1. Car was sold as a sports pack, however looks like It may be a Cooper with Sportpack options - Still investigating.

2. Wheels have spacers and may not be correct - Still investigating.

3. Engine bay is a bit messy - will need a tidy up and repaint.

4. Doors are full of filler and will need re-skinning at some point.

5. front end is the wrong one and will need to be replaced. 

6. Lights need tidying up - sports don't work.

7. Interior is original and untidy - will need replacing. 

8. Few bit of bubbling paintwork in the usual places.

9. Negative Camber on the front with no adjusters - Will replace with standard rods. 

10. Chrome bumpers and grill dent and need to be replaced. 

 

So thats the start. Going to be a long project as my wife and are are also refurbishing our house and dealing with a stroppy 15 month old Redhead. A few start pictures below, including my first Mini (before the bodywork disintegrated) 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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#2 jamesquintin

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Posted 21 January 2018 - 08:26 AM

Missing a boot badge too ;)

Has it had any panels replaced at all? I poked a small rust hole on my MPI with a screwdriver and now I'm doing a bare shell restoration...

#3 MacGyver

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Posted 21 January 2018 - 09:13 AM

Missing a boot badge too ;)

Has it had any panels replaced at all? I poked a small rust hole on my MPI with a screwdriver and now I'm doing a bare shell restoration...

Same here! 😁 a 5 minute job turned in to two years full stripdown and counting! 😉
I'm sure you'll be on the road in no time and enjoying every minute of it, even if you'd like to strangle them sometimes.
A mini is like a pet, you hate it when it pees on your carpet but you just can't resist the eyes it throws at you! 😶

Edited by MacGyver, 21 January 2018 - 09:14 AM.


#4 Steve220

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Posted 21 January 2018 - 09:37 AM

Only spacers your car should have are on the rear wheels 3-5mm. Your negative camber maybe from the car being so low at the front. New cones and knuckles. Not sure they ever did a cooper in that colour but the livery isn't original.

#5 M700FGT

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Posted 21 January 2018 - 11:25 AM

Ha ha, i know what you mean. Although think this project is going to be more expensive then the dog!

 

All the panels are original except the front, which for some completely unknown reason they fitted the wrong one. I will replace at a later date when i start working on the bodywork more. At the moment I'm concentrating on the mechanics.

 

As for the boot badge......... It was in the boot!  Clearly the last owner thought it went inside rather then on the outside. 

 

The spacers are an issue and i will be look at them shortly. 



#6 g111mds

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Posted 21 January 2018 - 12:50 PM

Really nice colour combination.

#7 jamesquintin

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Posted 21 January 2018 - 01:31 PM

How is the front panel wrong?



#8 M700FGT

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Posted 21 January 2018 - 07:32 PM

Thanks g111mds - loved the colour as its such an unusual blue.

 

Jamesquintin - Looks like they fitted an earlier version panel, not the MK7 type. Its not obvious from the outside, but when your under the can, you can see where they bodged the lower section that connects to the wings. Looks like thy used a hammer to fold the edges at the bottom round. The rest is strong so im not worried at the moment, but will be changing when i start working on the bodywork. I think the later type was also slightly different for spot light fitting, but don't quote me on it. 



#9 minidizzy

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Posted 22 January 2018 - 12:36 AM

In answer to the first item on the list the Cooper Sports Pack was not a model in its own right until 2000. Earlier MPi Coopers from 1997 on could be ordered from the factory with the "Sports Option Package":

Additional gauges, 13x6 wheels and tyres, extended wheel arches, Koni shock absorbers, 2 fog lights (in addition to two

standard driving lights) and large bore chrome tailpipe finisher.



#10 minimissions

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Posted 22 January 2018 - 06:50 AM

This is a nice looking MPI and looks solid which is the main thing with these, love the colour its one of the nicest later colours they do.... that a volcano orange, I hope you get those issues sorted and you will be motoring for the summer :)



#11 Steve220

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Posted 22 January 2018 - 11:04 AM

If the lower panel has a cut out for the front fan, its right.

#12 jamesquintin

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Posted 22 January 2018 - 11:24 AM

this is the correct one on mine (including correct wings with headlight cutouts)

m4ocS0p.jpg



#13 M700FGT

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Posted 22 January 2018 - 07:02 PM

Thanks Super Mini Mad, thats clears things up a little as its been getting confusing. Your rebuild looks fun! Once my mechanicals are sorted, i plan on replacing a couple of panels and respraying a few areas (Same colour).  As for the front panel, i haven't actually taken the front  grill off yet, but section near the inner wings ave been bodged to fit - will try and get some pictures on here at some point. 

 

Thanks mini missions - we actually went to look at 1998 Sportpack in Maserati Flame Orange. Funny really, as the guy had it painted in that colour after an engine fire. The rest of the car was a complete dog unfortunately, but the colour was amazing. 



#14 M700FGT

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Posted 29 January 2018 - 10:58 PM

My parts have started to arrive. Still a few parts on back order though. Should be with me within a week or so. 

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#15 jamesquintin

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Posted 30 January 2018 - 09:33 AM

Nice!

Have yo considered the Cooper 'S' Kit...?

 

Q
 






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