Category Archives: Classics

Tunes on Tuesday ~ Rod Stewart

even the thought of her made his heart beat faster

This isn’t a classic Rod Stewart song from the old days, back when I used to go out partying, but it’s damn good, and I like it.  (Actually, I never went out partying, I just made that up.)

Perhaps this will bring back tender memories for some of you.  I hope so.

This is for a woman I like, admire, and respect.

Please listen to the lyrics.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

the kind of car a woman like that should own

Jaguar V12 E-Type

Triumph TR7 V8

so, after a lot of committee work they came up with a curate’s egg

Here in England there is a long tradition of curious and interesting sports cars, with a few names being right at the top of the list when it comes to cars the classic enthusiast admires.  Sadly, the Triumph TR7 was never a car to put stars in the eyes.  Mostly that was because it was so different to it’s better-looking and more hairy-chested predecessors.

The original TR7 was a two-seat fixed-head coupe, powered by an overhead-cam four that churned out some 100 bhp.  Underneath was a fairly sophisticated suspension for the time, bolted to an incredibly strong monocoque, which made the little car heavy at just over a ton.  (Trust me, if you are ever going to roll a sports car, and expect to live through it, then make it a TR7.) But, deep down, the TR7 was a great car waiting to get out from under something far more ordinary.

The TR7 had two basic problems; #1 it wasn’t a convertible  #2 it was underpowered for its weight.  Despite that, and despite its terrible build quality it sold very well in the USA.

To give the TR7 more power the designers chose to drop in a 150 bhp version of the Rover / Buick 215 cu in aluminium V8, producing what was either a TR7 V8, or a Triumph TR8, (depending on who you talk to).  This thing went like shit off a shovel.  Then, to make it more appealing to Californians the steel roof was chopped off.  The thing was, the original TR7 was so strong that not at lot of additional strengthening was needed to compensate for the lack of a roof and those hefty C pillars.

What resulted was a pretty little proper sports car that was fabulous to drive,  so long as you remembered all that weight up front.

I’ve never driven a TR8, but I did like its less powerful TR7 FHC variant.  Imagine a stiffer and more powerful MGB and you will have an idea.  The ohc four up-front revs better than the venerable B series four-pot, and the shorter wheel-base makes the TR7 more nimble.

If you want one of these things, then first of all they are rare.  The TR8 drophead is a rare as hen’s teeth.  Finding one in as good condition as the gold number pictured here could take a very long time indeed.  Outside of California any un-restored example is likely to be infested with rust.  Any original car is likely to have problems with the electrics, cooling, gearbox, rear axle, suspension…..  But do not let that put you off.  Given a decent garage / workshop I could rebuild / build one of these things from the front spoiler backwards.  Just about everything is available, and there are thousands of bits languishing from other British Leyland cars of the era.  In fact you could take a rotten TR7 FHC shell and build a convertible with as much performance as you want / dare.

Some say the Triumph TR7 is like a curate’s egg, good in parts.  And that only a hairdresser would want to own one.  All I know is that the TR7 intrigues me ~ in any form it’s like a beautiful woman hiding her charms.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

you might want to do something about that ‘period’ interior upholstery

 

Tunes on Tuesday ~ The Italian Job

you’re only supposed to blow the bloody doors off

Matt Monroe sings On Days Like These which was the main theme from the 1969 classic heist / chase movie, The Italian Job.  This song doesn’t really fit the movie, other than it’s a Lamborghini Miura on a fabulous mountain road.  I’ve driven the Great St. Bernard Pass, but in a Triumph TR6, not a V12 Italian Supercar.

Please listen thinking about vacations in the Italian Sunshine.

Or a Mini Cooper.

Or Sophia Loren.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

Scenes on Sunday ~ English Sports Cars

life’s too short to drive boring cars

Morgan Roadster

Lotus Europa

V12 E-Type Jaguar

MGA Twin Cam

Lotus Elan 2

Marcos

MGB GT

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

the Seven

you’re not a number

Scenes on Sunday ~ Cars

I thought I said to blow the bloody doors off

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jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

it’s all about the car

chicks love the car

Tunes on Tuesday ~ Blondie

some say there is no blonde like an older blonde

Back in they day, when I drove a red TR6 sports car and went to New York a lot, Debbie Harry was considered to be very HOT.  By some at least.

Great legs, nice shoes, shame about the scarf.

Please listen responsibly.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

very hairy chested

With A Little Help From My Friends

where you are right now is where you were meant to be

Earlier this week I treated myself to the Beatles album Sgt, Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, on vinyl of course.  This is a brand new pressing re-mastered to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the original release in May 1967.  There is something very atmospheric about recreating the days of one’s youth.

Obviously I would have like to have bought an original ‘first pressing,’ and there are a couple for sale; on Amazon yet!  But, even I’m not going to pay something like $750 for 12 inches of black vinyl that I would never have dared to play.  Ergo this new pressing is a great buy for me.

There are some fab, groovy tracks on this album ~ but I’ve chosen this one because right now it’s very meaningful for me.

Ringo wasn’t a great singer, but then he wasn’t really a great drummer either.

I wonder where I can buy a pair of loon pants?

Or an original Mini Cooper?

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

Try not to go all 1960’s on me

 

Bond Themes

Bond.  James Bond.

The 25th Bond Film No Time To Die is out soon, with a theme song by Billie Eilish.  Nice song, great lyrics, cute singer, but Billie Eilish would never make the cut as a Bond Girl.  (Maybe that’s why there isn’t a great video to go with this theme.)

But there is only one true Bond theme.  This has been played sometime in every single Bond movie. (Don’t know why the Old Glory, there is nothing American about Bond films, Bond is a quintessential Englishman if ever there was one.)

Please listen without striking a pose.

~

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

an Aston Martin features in more than half of all Bond Movies

Monochrome Monday ~ Bond, James Bond

I like to do some things the old-fashioned way

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jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

 

Bond was not always saintly

but there’s a devil in all real men

Scenes on Sunday ~ Cars

most women would rather cry in a jaguar than on a bus 

V12 E-Type Jaguar

Jaguar XJ S V-12 Convertible

Series One Land Rover

Caterham 7 de Dion

Caterham 7 with a girl riding shotgun

Ford Mustang

my other Ford Mustang

Triumph TR5

jack collier

jackcollier7@talktalk.net

Triumph GT6

a miniature Aston Martin

 

I’ve owned, rented, or just driven examples of all of the above.

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