1933 Morgan Supersports 3 Wheeler 1100cc OHV J.A.P.
£55,000 | Location: United Kingdom
The best of the best. Ex Beaulieu Motor Museum.
The previous owner of the Morgan purchased her with the view to undertaking a rebuild. She was stripped down and parts placed in tea chests and left in that state until purchased by my father who, being an Engineer, wanted me to follow in his footsteps, rather than going into medicine, as was my want at the time, and gave me the Morgan bits with the view to my getting it on the road and to develop a taste for engineering. I was 14 years-old at the time.
The 1100cc JAP V twin engine was sent to J.A. Prestwich Industries Ltd for a complete rebuild and service. Fortunately, we had a double garage with a courtyard, so space wasn’t an issue. For the following 9 years I commenced a long campaign of renovation, working on farms and warehouses in order to earn the much needed funds to pay for materials and parts. Unfortunately the original log book had been lost so we applied for a replacement, which was issued in 1963, despite our having purchased the car in 1958.
When we moved from Rotherham to Esher in Surrey, the chassis and body were hoisted through the window of the attic, which allowed me to continue work in the evenings after school and then as an engineering student.
The chassis was sand blown, rubbed back to bare metal and coated with the best quality paints: the body work was ground back to bare metal and primed, undercoated and many coats of Dulux “98” paint were painstakingly applied by brush. (That paintwork is still sound and unblemished).
The ash wooden frame was sanded back to the wood, treated, primed and painted.
The hoop at the back of the car had broken in parts and was rebuilt by way of laminating several strips of ash, glued with Cascomite and then steamed to shape, before winding it with tape to increase the strength.
The gear box was stripped down and then polished on reassembly. New front and rear springs fitted. The fuel tank was ground down to the bare metal and painted, as was all metal parts. The entire wiring system was replaced and CAV solid cast allow headlamps fitted in place of the originals, which were ineffective. New mudguards were supplied by the Morgan factory to replace those which were badly corroded. The Morgan factory also supplied new exhaust pipes and Burgess silencers, together with securing blocks and brackets.
The interior was covered with a red vinyl material to match the colour of the wheels, and the floor was carpeted which made her more amenable to lady passengers, assuming of course they could manage to clamber in and not get burnt on the hot exhaust pipes. The steering gear and controls, stress bars, engine fastening nuts and washers, as well as the brake handle and gear shift were new and supplied by Morgan and were then diamond hard chromed, with a 10-year guaranteed, and have been rust and stain free to this present day.
Petroflex armoured fuel lines were added and the generator and starter sent off to Lucas for a thorough service. The drive chain was replaced by one supplied by Reynolds Chains. The brakes converted to twin floating cams to improve its braking performance. The engine securing plates and bracket tubes were replaced with polished cadmium metal.
With the assistance of the bemused neighbours, the parts were lowered from the attic and into the garage where they were assembled. The exposed parts were undercoated and with the help of members of the Morgan Three Wheeler Club she was started up, tuned and run on the road - the first time since the mid 1950s
Unfortunately, I had to leave home to study engineering at Toulouse University in 1963. However, my father was good friends with Bunty Scott-Moncrieff and Lord Montagu who kindly offered to store her, as an exhibit, at the then Montagu Motor Museum in Beaulieu, (now The National Motor Museum). She was housed there between April 1963 to April 1978 and as such featured in many books and calendars.
On returning from studying and working overseas, I took her out of the Museum and enjoyed short runs around the Surrey country side before I had to join the World Bank and United Nations overseas. She was then brought by trailer to the Bentley Wildfowl and Motor Museum in Halland, E Sussex where she was exhibited from April 1982 to August 2004.
Having built an 8 to 10 car garage at my present home, she was brought back from the Museum on a trailer where she has been nurtured in the good company of my other collection of vehicles.