I trust you all had a good Christmas with plenty to eat to drink, and lots of ‘pressies’. By the time you read this, you will all no doubt have started back to work after the holiday, and if you are anything like me, looking forward to the Spring and the start of the Rally season which is quite exciting this year, as a number of us are off to France on April 3rd which is only 11 weeks from January clubnight!!

I received a telephone call just before Christmas from Mr. Jim Calenaghar of Highcliffe. He wanted a valve chest cover for his Austin Seven.  I told him I could help him out with one and the following day he called round to collect it. It transpired that he owns a Tickford bodied A7, a very rare beast. A handle is wound to raise and lower the hood, and Jim explained that he had to make a new cog wheel out of a solid piece of steel by filing to shape. He hopes to go to Switzerland and Germany this summer for a fairly extensive tour. He says he is going alone unless anyone cares to join him. A future new member perhaps.

Have any other members experienced difficulty in getting A7 spares by

mail order recently? Gary has been waiting some weeks for Ruby seat
frames from The Clubs Association, and I have been waiting for weeks for brake linings from John Platts. I have telephoned him four times, and on the two occasions I managed to speak to John in person, he assured me he

would dispatch them that day.  I am still waiting at the time of writing!!
I could do with come help please in the form of letters and articles

from you.  I am sure you could manage just a few lines on your car or

restoration, or SOMETHING!  Drop me a line or give your contribution on
club nigh.   Even a couple of paragraphs would do. Also some technical

tips please, these can be very useful and sometimes save a lot of time.
Our numbers were down for the December club night at the Nags Head, but those of us who cams had an enjoyable evening, talking, and listening to

windup gramophones whivh were brought along by members.



The year was 1921, Citroen and Peugeot of France both had 4-cylinder, water cooled cars. The Peugeot also had its crank running in ball bearings.  A 3-speed gearbox was combined with a differential-less back axle, springing was by transverse leaf front and elliptic rears. Sounds

familiar doesn’t it? No doubt Si Herbert must have snooped at all the
small cars on the market at that
time (and a few larger ones) and one amazing feature was his 4-wheel brakes (albeit operated separately) which was unheard of at the time on a small car.



Do not regard your ignition control as a heaven-sent substitute for a gearbox. On the other hand, do not despise its use because you can rub along without it.  Actually, the control should be set in conjunction with engine speed and varies as the speed rises and falls.  Without automatic control, the ideal is impossible but an effort must be made to keep    the setting as nearly correct as the driver is able to judge.

Too much advance means pinking and roughness; too much retard gives over-heating and loss of power.


FOOTBRAKE Never use your brakes to the full except in an emergency and

then apply them gradually if you wish to avoid a skid. When you are not pressed for time, let your engine slow you, and save your brakes for times when you really must hurry. Always slow before corners, not on them.


HANDBRAKE Never leave your handbrake hard on when your car is at rest for a period in the garage. This may put unnecessary strain on the rods or cables and cause them to stretch. A better plan is to leave the car

in gear and apply the handbrake lightly; this divides the strain.



Don’t forget our annual social at the Monmouth Ash, Verwood on 9th Feb

at 7.30pm. The cost .. 75p. each including a plowmans supper or
£1.50p. each including chicken in basket. Send cheque to Mrs Elizabeth Wragg, 239, Station Road, West Moors, Wimborne, Dorset for your reservation.



There is still just time for you to enter for this event organised by the Solent Austin Seven Club. We will be leaving Southampton on the morning of Thursday 3rd April (10.30 a.m.) there is a choice of return

dates, they are Wednesday 9th April (17.30), FridaY 12th April (17.30) or Monday 14th April (17.30 hrs.)  The first 3 nights are to be spent 15 miles from Cherbourg and the remainder at a site near Mont St.

Michael (about 100 miles from Cherbourg). Prices - Car £28 return + £3.50 per person (incl. children) return, + camping fees of £9 per night for a 4-berth caravan. At the time of writing there are 5 cars from our club going. If you wish to come, see John Page this Clubnight or phone him on Christchurch 473207. He will require a deposit.




Many members have still not paid their subscriptions. Please give your cheque or whatever to Lawrence this clubnight or post to L. Rideal, Diprose Road, Corfe Mullen, Broadstone Dorset. This is positively the last newsletter you will receive unless you renew your membership now.   Membership is £3, excluding the Assoc. Mag. or £4.75 if you require the Austin 7 Clubs Association magazine as well.



I have recently purchased an A7 not quite as old as some of those recently mentioned in dispatches from one of the members.  It is a LWB Box built approx. March 15th. 1934.

The last time I had a ride in such a car was back in the 50s and I have always longed to be the owner of one since. This particular one was being used for simple runs around and I was quite happy to use it likewise but it soon became evident that the steering was too different from my 1978 Saab and that the list to starboard should not have been there. So with winter here I thought I should do like so many other Club members have done and that is to take it apart and sort it all out for the Daffodil Run 1980. I knew Gary and Derek weren’t far away if I got stuck!

On taking the seats out, the floor looked remarkably good, but then I noticed that it was plywood riveted on the drivers and front passengers

side, so I removed it. Then I found what was once metal floor was just

a riddle of holes. I carried on removing items - doors, windscreen, door handles, lights, in fact my sun lounge is now full of dismantled pieces as well as the garage.

Garry told me the correct number at bolts holding the body on to the chassis, so I started to try and undo them. What a terrible job. I even snapped a bolt cracker and rendered it useless. After several days we reached the stage of lifting the body off. Four of us lifting with my daughter holding the chassis steady, but it wouldn’t come away. We found the petrol pipe was still connected to the tank - I told you we are beginners. Of course you will understand all the wires had to be disconnected, the clutch and accelerator and the steering wheel. To remove the steering wheel, we had to remove the roof which had been sort

of restored a few years ago with chicken wire and  2”x1” timber and P.V.C.

We did eventually manage and Derek very kindly helped me take the body to my other lock up garage where it is hoped we will put in a new floor where needed to the car, a sliding roof as it should have, two new rear mudguards because of extensive corrosion and two new running boards. After this lot of course it has he be resprayed in its origin colour.

Back at the base the chassis is in good order with rust and road dirt

no doubt going back many years. I want to remove the leaf springs now
which I think must be the original ones because I cannot remove them.  I can't even get the pins out, so the springs are held in two places, can anyone help

The front half of the car is in good order because the engine was rebuilt four years ago so who am I to tamper with that, other than keep it clean and covered for the big day - next year 1980?

Gerald Ridge,

143, Wollaten Road, Ferndown Dorset.

Thanks for an interesting article Gerald, perhaps you could let us know how you are progressing occasionally. ED.


The following article was seen in the local press by Bernard, who substituted the words Austin Sevens in place of Motor Cycles.

There must be many men who had a quiet chuckle when reading a report in the 'Nationals’ recently, concerning a wife who was granted a divorce on the grounds that her husband was a hoarder and that among the many things that cluttered the family home were parts of five Austin Sevens!!

With the understanding that luckily many wives, or mothers, have a man’s love for his Austin Seven, it is very surprising and almost unbelievable what parts are stored in various locations in some households. Particularly, in connection with restoration or rebuilding projects.

Many a magneto or newly chromed radiator find their way into an airing cupboard (must keep them dry dear, for a few months or a carefully

Reconditioned engine goes under the bed. Probably because of their
convenient size, Austin Seven engines, and things, have something of a reputation for being repaired on the kitchen table.


RESTORATION OF WL 1133 cont. from last month

Since overhauling the rear axle last month, I have stripped the

engine and rebuilt the bottom end still waiting for parts on the rest!
Dad has been busy “bulling up” all the aluminium and brass parts of the

engine, which, I hope, will be on display at our 'Table top Concours’ this month. Apart from the engine, we have got the body back completely restored from Chris Smith, and must say it is a credit to his expertise, a really lovely job – Many thanks, Chris.
The body is now bolted to the chassis and the restoration of the body parts commences, ready for France or the Daffodil run.



RESTORATION OF OW 3654 cont. from last month

The brake linings have arrived at last, and I have riveted them on to the shoes. Then I checked the wheel bearings, and fitted new hub felt seals, the wheels were then fitted and at last I had a rolling chassis.

The next operation was to refit the body. As I desperately need room in the garage I decided to refit the body before painting it. So I rounded up all the neighbours and we managed  to wiggle it over the steering column and on to the chassis. On standing back and looking at it, it didn't look any different than when I bought it!! I then spent all afternoon re-drilling the holes in the floor and bolting the body on. (It should be remembered, if you have not got a sunshine roof, you should fit the steering wheel and ignition and hand throttle levers before bolting down, as the body must be lifted in order to get enough
clearance for the tubes that slide down the column).

I shall have to leave it at that for the moment, as I have to do some work on the Ruby to get it ready for the French trip at Easter.