Outside trim


Following on from the bodywork rebuild in 2008, I decided to make my Coupe look more original by  putting some things back onto the car that were missing when I bought her in 2003, things like BL badges, side stripes and wheel arch trims.  Easy to say but not always as easy to find though.  The picture above is post respray and the only thing that I have done is to add the pinstripe.


Side stripes

The Mk1 SDL should have two narrow stripes running parallel along the side body moulding below the door handles.  They are meant to be a dark brown against the Harvest Gold.  They are no longer available in any colour so I had to think again.  What I settled on are single line blue stripes that run like a hockey stick around the rear side window.  Early TC Coupes had similar hand painted pinstripes from new.  I wasn't sure whether I would like them, so I bought some three millimetre wide stick on pinstriping, dark blue to match the interior colour.  You can just see them in the picture above.  I like them so much that I'll get them hand pinstriped at some point, but not yet.


BL Badges

This is one for the anoraks, BL badges come in different styles dependant on the year and can be found on all BL cars and light trucks of the period.  My Coupe had one cast aluminium one on the offside when I bought it but nothing on the nearside; I originally thought that the other one had come off at some point over the years (unlike other badges on the car they are stick on, although some versions had pins on the back).  Speaking to some of the Marina old hands, it transpires that cars came out of the factory, with one, two or none on a random basis.  To complicate issues a little further there are three different versions of the badge;


New badge

  • A cast aluminium badge, with a Leyland blue paint inlay - as shown

  • A shiny steel badge with the same BL logo as above but screen printed on - blue against the shiny background

  • A shiny steel badge with the BL logo in reverse colour - blue background with shiny detail - also screen printed.

Although common to Minis, MGBs etc. the cast aluminium ones are like hens teeth, but they turned up on EBay.  I had to measure up an original car to get the position correct.


I had spent 3 years looking  for good wheel arch trims and then I found three of the four new old stock at the BMC/BL Rally at Peterborough in August 2008 - the fourth came as good used from Frank Philips on the Isle of Wight.

The trim strips are clipped onto little metal brackets, which in turn are pop riveted through the wheel arch.  I have shown below the fitting process as I put them on at the restoration show at Stoneleigh in October 2008, Dave Richardson wielded my camera for me.

  • Protect the paintwork with masking tape first or you are bound to scratch it.

  • Trial fit the trim, the shape will only be approximate and you'll have to bend it slightly to get a good fit to the body.  Also work out where you want the rivets to go and mark up the masking tape before drilling.

  • Carefully drill out the rivet holes, I managed to snap a drill bit by pressing too hard and the broken end scratched the paintwork, time for some touch-up.

  • Before I pop riveted the trim clips on I dipped each one in black underseal to protect the clean metal in the drill hole. When each arch was done, I then sprayed all the back of the wheel arch in underseal to protect it.

  • Fit the most difficult parts first, that's the end pieces as they slot into the back of the trim.

  • It should be possible to push the trim over the other clips with just hand pressure, however everything needs to be accurately aligned.

  • If all else fails use a little force!

  • Job done!

This shot was taken by Fuzz Townsend from Practical Classics magazine, as I overtook him on the M45 outside Coventry after the show - thanks for the pic Fuzz.