Well then, I've posted nothing for a long time. Sadly my daughter-in-law was diagnosed with cancer and went through 3 serious bouts of chemo with first good then not so good news. Tragically gone from my younger son and only grandson's lives in September 2017.
And other things got in the way, first a return trip to Australia to cross the Gibb River Road in Western Australia's Kimberley. And, since a friend pointed out an OEM 12G295 head For Sale in California, I could see a Russell Engineering inspired power unit built off the factory 1098 in the Australian Van. So...I took the head across the Pacific Ocean, on a bus to Sydney and Rivercat to Parramatta, New South Wales where Graham Russell met me at the dock. 5 hours later I had a modified head (hardened ex. seats, seats cut for Paul Ivey race valves & Graham also cleaned up a little under the seats), had a fresh RE 266S cam grind, RE +100 piston/rings/pins, RE intake, RE faced lifters,...back to Sydney for bus to Brisbane. Then the trip north & west in a Toyota 100 with camping trailer.
The Cooper head buy & RE inspired build followed a challenge from a friend in California to enter the ALCAN 5000 Summer Rally in August 2018. So, early 2018 saw the front end of the OZ van cleaned up painted, new steering rack refreshed front subbie, rebuilt wiper motor, recored rad, etc. etc. and a +100 build of the 1098 with the RE bits.
A friend from Sweden came to Co-Drive and we had great hopes for an adventure...well we got that & more but brought the Mini back from the Yukon on a tow dolly (details of the bearing failure on another post).
The 1098 is being rebuilt again with all new engine & tranny bearings and both replacement case & housing & new drop gears.
And, my body/paint man took a break from autos & boats to concentrate on his art...then got sick.
Now, we expect to have LUCKY in paint in April (after a big boat project is completed).
Lastly, in this 60th Anniversary year for the Classic Mini, we will head for Colorado, USA for Mini Meet East Meets West in Snowmass Village...and...to England for a Vancouver Mini Club tour centred on IMM in Bristol!
After that I will spend the fall/winter/spring building up LUCKY...and LUCKY will go to my son & grandson.