Traveller Resto
John Kinghorn's loving restoration of a Morris Traveller.

I bought my 1964 Oxford Traveller in October 2007 as a restoration project.

This will be my 6th Oxford over the years (my dad always had Cambridges).
I’d been looking for a Traveller for about 2 years and over that time had shifted more to doing one up rather than paying big money for one that could be hiding any amount of trouble

 

The car was in a colour scheme I liked (smoke grey over old English white) and had such a sentimental story (the gent who owned it passed away 20 years ago and the car had stayed in his garage kept by his widow until it went on eBay)  

I was at a wedding half way between home in Manchester and where the car was on the outskirts of London, so decided to take a look while it was still listed.  

I didn’t think it needed too much work and so got up at 1:00 a.m. to watch the bidding, slipping a bid in during the final moments to buy the car at a little over what I first thought it would go for, but I'm happy with the price I paid considering how rare these are getting.  

 

 

I went with a trailer to collect the car two weeks later, and the whole family was in attendance to see her go – it really was a 'lump in the throat' day.

I promised the widow that I would do as good a job as possible and take it back to show her.

 

 

 

 

I brought her back and parked her in a friends garage for another two weeks until I could move other cars about and have her at home to start the restoration

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Once we got her back I soon got the engine running and then got the whole car jacked up so I could look at the brakes and clutch (the fluid had turned to crystals). I had to boil all the brake and clutch cylinders in a pan of water to get them working again.  

 I spent most of November in Australia and as soon as I returned I began the strip down, removing lights, bumpers, grill etc  

It soon became apparent that she needed a lot more work than I’d first anticipated. I read this all the time in Practical Classics, so didn’t feel like I’d bought badly, it's just you can’t possibly see what’s what until you start striping a car, which you obviously can’t do til you own it.  

We like a challenge and we’d made a promise to Margret, the owner's widow, and family do the job properly, so off came the doors, tailgate & wings.

 

I stripped the interior (now stored in our back bedroom along with new rear quarter panels and front wings)

I was able to get advice from a local lad who I used to race cars with, and who is an A60 expert and full time auto-jumbler. 

He was able to source me all kinds of panels through his contacts and the car came with masses of mechanical spares.

Next I drilled all the spot welds to carefully remove the sills and found most of the original sills underneath  

I bought an original BMC front wing from eBay, which had been sprayed badly in primer so I took that down to bare metal inside and out.

I got the other front wing, again an original BMC item from one of Pete’s contacts, along with original outer sills.

Pete got me the quarter panels and is taking my bumpers etc in for re-chroming now I've dressed the insides.

'Maggie Sue' (based on a combination of her original name of Suzy and the owner's wife Margaret) looks a bit of a mess just now but we've really enjoyed doing it so far.

Caz has been underneath for hour after hour scraping off the old underseal and I've been doing the rest.

 

 

I'll send updates as she progresses.

I hope this gives others inspiration - I'm not a mechanic or anything, I know a bit about cars, but this is my first real attempt at a restore - so if I can do it - with help I reckon anyone can.

John Kinghorn
jkinghorn38@yahoo.co.uk

 

 

UPDATE - MAY 2008

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Update December 2008

Some further progress on the traveller restoration
 
We found quite a bit more to do than originally anticipated, but we're doing it properley and enjoying it, and it's coming on
 
A lot we've done that you can't see, mainly underside
 
Hoping to get her in for paint by May and it has to ready for our wedding in September

 The Finished Project